Nicknames: Will workers (polite), astral gazers, (derogatory)
Aesthetic Hermetic Wizards unlock their magic through rigorous practice, study, and great self-discipline.
Aesthetic hermetic wizards can and do use arcane foci, spell books, and they teach that these things are to be used as tools, not crutches. Much like a warrior can use a sword, but should be able to fight competently unarmed, an aesthetic hermetic wizard is expected to be able to use magic without any tools or at least aspire to be able to cast magic without tools.
Most aesthetic hermetic wizards aspire to be well-rounded. They are often less magically powerful than other mages but they tend to develop a wide variety of mundane skills in addition to their magical abilities. They tend to be make due with a relatively small number of utilitarian spells that enhance their routine activities rather than seek magic for its own sake.
All eight schools of magic are fairly commonly studied by Aesthetic Hermetics. Many, by no means all aesthetic hermetics opt to be jack-of-all trades dabblers learning a few utilitarian spells from many schools rather than focusing on one or two schools primarily.
No magic school is especially common or uncommon. Aesthetic hermetics usually pick magic befitting their personalities so a mage is more likely to be a stereotypical diviner or a stereotypical necromancer rather than a stereotypical will worker.
Apprentices and Training
Aesthetic hermetic wizards always learn their craft from individual mentors, usually in one-on-one apprentices. It is uncommon but not unheard for a mentor to take more than one apprentice at a time.
Most aesthetic hermetics view their magical advancement as a personal journey so aesthetic mentors can frustratingly vague and indirect. They also kick their young ones out of the nest fairly early after their apprentices master the basics.
History and Spread
Aesthetic hermetic wizards claim they practice the oldest form of wizardry in Scarterra and that all other magical practices are derivatives of their art. In support of this, aesthetic hermetic wizards tend to be more flexible about using the lore and tools of other magical traditions relative to other mages who are hidebound in their methods.
Aesthetic hermetic wizards are widely spread, but they are also thinly spread. They can be found almost anywhere among almost any culture but they are almost never seen in great numbers.
One exception is monastic orders which sometimes encourage the spread of aesthetic hermeticism, especially in Umera. A lot of monasteries train some of their monks and nuns in aesthetic hermetic wizardry if they have an interest and aptitude in arcane arts.
Compared to other mages, aesthetic hermetic wizards are disproportionately likely to be adventurers or nomads hence why they strive to self-sufficient, well rounded, and not irrevocably tied to mystic talismans that can be lost or stolen.
Compared to other forms of the wizardry, it generally takes an apprentices longer between when they start their studies and when they master their first magic spell. While there are plenty of human will workers, aesthetic hermetic wizards are disproportionately likely to be found among longer lived races.
Aesthetic hermetics give fellow practioners of the art professional courtesy but they are not especially likely to form fellowships and organizations to advance the interests of their craft. Most aesthetic hermetics that are socially inclined or seek to network are more likely to join generic mage organizations than to join or create aesthetic only clubs.
Aesthetic Hermetic Wizard Character Creation Guidelines
Required: Arcane Spell caster Merit
Willpower 5+ and Intelligence 3+ and Wits 3+ OR Willpower 8+ and Intelligence 2+ and Wits 2+
Highly Recommended: Cross Disciplinary Mage Merit
Recommended: a high Willpower score, at least a few dots of Enigmas, practiced silent caster, practiced still caster.
Forbidden: Bardic Mage Flaw