The Magi are Magic Users, those who draw on the 13 arcane powers of the world, born from the links of the 7 realms, and bend these powers to their will to use to aid them and their allies, and to use against their enemies ...
Civilization and Culture
Many Magi keep whatever name they were given as a child, while others choose to adopt a new name when they master their powers. When Magi used to be accepted as Mages of one of the 13 schools, some schools would actively encourage Mages to take new names. Some of them would insist on it. Chosen names tend to invoke power and mystery, and usually relate to the particular school of magic. Many Magi use the names of ancient and long dead great Magi as a way to inflate their own importance, but wiser and more humble Magi tend to either use their birth name or a new name of their own devising, recognising the arrogance of naming oneself Tesh, Suhor, Nxasana, Lucius or Morganna.
There at 13 Schools of Magic: The Six Outer Realms: 1) Heaven 2) Hell 3) Light 4) Dark 5) Creation 6) Destruction / Death There are two Intermediary Realms, situated between Creation and the Middle Domain and Destruction / Death and the Middle Domain respectively: 7) Life 8) Undeath There are 5 Magics that gather and effect on the Middle Domain, Netak Neti, itself: 9) Earth 10) Air / Storm 11) Fire 12) Water / Ice 13) Nature
Magi emerge regardless of gender. In a number of more sexist and patriarchal old societies this could lead to issues, with women Magi shunned while male Magi were accepted. In the many places where magic has been banned, female Magi have been punished as "Witches", facing the death penalty. Many male Magi have met a similar fate. However, some have been able to wheedle their way into the position of royal magicians in the courts of seemingly more permissive and open minded royalty, yet royalty who nonetheless seem quite entrenched in a patriarchal mindset.
Magi tend to be highly secretive, even before the massacres and purges. They will rarely reveal their powers to any but those they trust the most. Magi frequently form relationships with other Magi, but many do so with non-Magi. The fine balance of trust and secrecy is often a difficult and volatile one to navigate in nearly all Magi relationships.
Some Magi seek only to be accepted, to live with a partner who loves them for who they are and who they can trust. Others seek to change the world to try make it more accepting, who seek out passionate partners they love and trust who will help them in trying to restore a world were Magi and non-Magi can live alongside, if not in peace then at least not at constant war. Others seek to dominate the world, to restore Magi to their former place of supremacy, and seek ambitious and powerful partners who with aid them to this aim.
Common Etiquette Rules
It is considered common etiquette to not betray a fellow Magi (especially of the same school), to not kill a fellow Magi (especially of the same school) and to aid a fellow Magi in a time of need (especially if they are of the same school). These three rules are frequently broken however, especially between Magi of rival schools, but often of those of the same school.
Common Dress Code
The old school colours set out were: Heavens - Purple Hell - Maroon Light - White Dark - Black Creation - Yellow Destruction / Death - Grey Life - Green Undeath - Red Water / Ice - Various shades of Blue Nature, Earth, Air / Storm and Fire had no set colours, they simply required that what Magi wore could sustain the magic they cast (fire casters wore material that would not burst into flame).
For as long as can be remembered, there has been magic in the world. Ancient cave paintings show Shamans turning themselves into beasts to draw animals near, or to help find fresh fruits and roots to gather. They show Magicians bending rivers to allow clans to cross, or sparking fire from their fingertips. In these ancient times, the mastery of magic was localised. Those with the gift learned as they went, testing their often limited and rudimentary powers, sometimes with disasterous effects. The links between the realms are volatile. The powers elemental. An unwary Magi can freeze their body solid, drain themselves of all their life trying to restore a single dead flower, set a whole forest alight trying to summon a single spark ... But we learned. Slowly, steadily, painfully, we learned. And the non-Magi loved us. Most of them anyway. It was we who formed trees when there was no food to be found. We who saved children bitten by deadly snakes from certain death. We who destroyed there enemies with the click of a finger ... And it is we who paid for it. Spending years learning the subtle complexities of the connections, drained of energy from even the simplest spell, driven half-insane by our connections with those raw, ravenous rips that rambunctiously rear to ravage this realm to ruin. We who strain to control and limit them just as we seek to access and unleash them. And all we sought was to help. All we ever sought was to help. Well, not all of us to be sure. There were some who sought to exert their own foul will upon this world. Those who sought to rule it with harsh brutality. Those who succumbed to the madness and let the raw power consume their very minds. More than a few perhaps, many even. But not most. Not all. And yet when they came for us, they came for us all. They slaughtered us. Massacred any of us they could find. Man, woman and child. Our blood ran red in the streets, and over ruins, and over snow, and desert sand, and grassy plain. It turned rivers red. Turned our Universities to abattoirs. Turned our homes to tombs. And they laughed. And they rejoiced. And then they went back to hunting us. They drove us out, drove us into hiding, drove us to the very edges of existence. Here we came to dwell, among others pushed to the edges of society, stains on their perverted ideals. They grew fat and complacent, lazy and arrogant in their dominion over the world. They turned on one another, divided by petty squabbles, tearing each other apart, banishing us to distant memory, to mere mythology. And out here in the darkness, they forgot about us. But I have not forgotten. I have not forgiven. They will remember. And by the time they do, it will be too late for them.
The Horned Woman - The first recorded Magi, a Magi of Nature, depicted on a cave painting in Safri. Little is known of her, but she appears to have led her small clan to abundant natural resources. Arch-Mage Unam the Powerful - Magi of Heavens and First Arch-Mage. Arch-Mage Surosi the Eternal - Magi of both Heavens and Life. Unlocked the secrets to extended life when he was 55. Overthrew the Orazim of Kushar when he tried to curtail his power and put the Orazim's pro-Magic nephew on the throne in his place as a puppet ruler when he was 89. Effectively ruled Kushar for 453 years after that, before eventually being killed by his brother, Tesh. Arch-Mage Tesh the Diabolical - Magi of both Hell and Undeath. Brother and ally of Surosi. Masters secret to extended life through Magic of Undeath, as opposed to his brother, who did so through life magic. Grows tired of waiting for his time to rule and overthrows and murders his brother Surosi. Raises an undead army when a number of Magi and humans rise against him. Deposed after 101 years by an alliance of non-Magi and Magi, defeated by the combined power of his nephew, Suhor, and the young Magi Lucius Ferrum. Arch-Mage Suhor the Great - Magi of both Air / Storm and Life. Son of Surosi. Defeats his uncle Tesh with the aid of non-Magi and Magi alike, including the brilliant Magi Lucius Ferrum. Rules for 56 years. Towards end of reign allies with King Aeris of the non-Magi to defeat Lucius Ferrum when he and his "Bringers of Glory" seek to dominate the entire world. Seals Lucius behind the door with the aid of 12 other Magi. Created the Key of Storm. He is destroyed by Lucius in the process. Nxasana - Considered the greatest Magi of Nature of all time. Xasana led her armies of Magi, non-Magi humans and beasts alike to help defeat Lucius Ferrum and his "Bringers of Glory". Created the Key of Nature. Died as a result of the battle. Legend says her body sank into the ground and a tree grew in her place. Lucius Ferrum - A Magi of Heaven who mastered all 13 Schools of Magic. A young Lucius helped Suhor defeat his uncle, Tesh, using a combination of the magics of creation, destruction and heavens to do so, showing off his mastery of three of the highest schools of magic at the age of just 21. Traveled the World and eventually mastered all 13 Schools of Magic. Sought to unify all beings in peace, yet grew disheartened when saw endless infighting between Magi and non-Magi and among themselves as well. Created the "Bringers of Glory" and tried to master the "Untouchable Magics" of Love and Time in order to bring peace to the world through dominating all who threatened this peace. Eventually defeated by an alliance of Magi and non-Magi alike, and trapped behind a door by 13 Keys. Arch-Mage Anorus the Proud - Magi of Heaven. An ally and friend of Suhor. Helps to defeat and imprison Lucius Ferrum. Created the Key of Heavens. Becomes Arch-Mage following Suhor's destruction. Wipes out the royal family of Kushar in an attempt to cement his direct rule. Fought with various Magi schisms. Ruled for just 5 years. Deposed and murdered by a mass non-Magi revolt led by the common fisherman, Syed. Morganna - A Magi of Nature who often stood against King Tharur and his knights. Considered a hero among many Magi and a villain among many non-Magi. Apprentice and lover of Myrrdin. Myrrdin - A Magi of Nature who aided King Tharur. Considered as somewhat of a hero to many non-Magi and to some Magi, yet a villain to many other Magi. Teacher and lover of Morganna. Lilith Ferrum - Magi of Dark and Daughter of Lucius Ferrum. Lilith fled after her father's defeat to the isolated and frigid island of Malaa with the remnants of the "Bringers of Glory". Despite being near death, she steadily built up a mighty fortress and slowly rebuilt the "Bringers of Glory", warding off the attacks of numerous Magi who sought to destroy her once and for all. Survived the great purge due to her isolated and strong position. Many Magi fled to Malaa afterwards and rallied to her side. Has fought off numerous non-Magi attempts to seize the island since. Has slowly been regaining her strength and building her powers over thousands of years. Believed to have mastered all 13 Schools of Magic like her father before her. Possible that she is now even more powerful than he was.