Apprenticeship in TAHARJIN'S FLAME | World Anvil
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Apprenticeship

Though there are small variances within Traditions, by and large, the path of Apprenticeship is highly comparable in all cases. It takes approximately 10 years in any Tradition to learn what is required of a fully fledged mage. The separate stages are broken down in this order:   Years 1 & 2 – Grunt work. Learning the basics of sourcing spell ingredients, grinding powders, identifying trade equipment, and/or reading one or more Magical Languages while tidying the Master's study. Most quit.   Years 3 & 4 – Depending on one's progress, one is either let go or accepted to take on further study. An Apprentice remains on the hook for a great deal of housework but receives more reading and is required in these years to gain proficiency in at least one Magical Language. Here, the fledgling begins to understand the internal structure of what will eventually become a power.   Years 5 & 6 – By now, the student has a fair amount of knowledge, and may begin to be entrusted with genuinely relevant tasks. It is usual for Apprentices to be given traditional puzzles within the discipline, low-level tasks that require figuring out some magical formula, such as how to light a candle with the Magical Language of Elements. To solve this, a second Language of magical proficiency is generally required in combination with the first, but the Master tends to let the Apprentice learn this by his or herself. By the end of the 6th year, the student not only should have acquired cantrip-like powers based on the sorts of puzzles given, but be poised to take on a major project. At this point in training, isn't usual to be on the hook for menial labour any longer, but Apprentices are often sent out on excursions relating to the Master's own line of magical study. These journeys tend to involve either theoretical or practical knowledge of magic and are more intricate than fetch quests.   Years 7-10 – During these years, the Apprentice undertakes a major project: writing their first spell. This test synthesizes his or her understanding of magical theory which the same time aspires to be a true contribution to the magic community in general. Most applications do not prove useful enough to spread very widely. Choosing a spell area is a declaration of one's identity as a sorceror. One remains restricted to the core Languages the Tradition teaches, but can innovate within these to develop something unique. In special circumstances, the spell may engage Languages from other Traditions.   Mages must determine a suitable description for their first solo work. Should the spell be novel or practical enough, there is a small chance that the Apprentice gains recognition for their work.   Writing a good, solid spell is all that is needed to pass this particular hurdle in one's training, but it's usual for young Apprentices to show an additional measure of ambition to prove something, either to themselves or to others about who they are as a Mage. There is in fact no need for the spell to hold a practical effect: a theory of sufficient complexity shows more ambition, in a way, provided it offers other Mages a clue about how it could be used, given enough time or research. But caution should be taken here: Many an Apprentice has made the mistake of biting off more than they can chew, spending all of their time in a high tower, poring over dusty tomes, dreaming of a ridiculously brilliant but ultimately unachievable application of arcane thought. By the end of the 10 year period, if a student has not produced a spell or spell theory of worth, they are typically turfed out into the world by their Master.   Once this spell has been approved by the Master – sometimes with an added Proving to throw the would-be wizard a few curveballs - the young Apprentice graduates to the title of Mage. They are still a long way off from defining themselves, however. To be considered mature (capable of taking on Apprentices), a Mage must be part of the Circle of Masters, but can teach earlier on under the direct supervision of a senior mage. As a Master, a mage becomes recognized as truly notable within their own community. Those above this Tier hold an honoured (or reviled) place in arcane discussion, provided that they operate out in the open, as making such progress is reasonably rare.   Master and Apprentice may hold a lifelong bond after the training is done, or neither may wish to look at the other again. However, a resonant chord between the two does linger and it is rare to ever be done with one's Master entirely...

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