Magickal Wells

 
 
Magickal wells are instrumental in performing magick. After all, who can wield a spell if they have no power to complete it?   But beware: refusing to practice until you can wield with the minutest power possible from your personal well, claiming you have comfortable access to our pool, will mean your death in battle and in the field.  

~~Savae Meun, Artiste of the Water's Light, Kandioh Academy

All artwork by Shanda Nelson unless otherwise stated
orig. photo jolajan36 from Pixabay
Lightarts pool at Kandioh Academy, in Laovelos, Condioh
 
Description
 
Magickal wells, in the most general sense, store magick. The magick within the wells can be used by mystery artists to wield spells. Without wells, there are no spells.   Each magick user has a limited internal well, though the depths vary greatly (sylfaodolon have wells deep enough they might as well be infinite, while hearth wielders might be drained after conducting a single broken bone healing). When this well is empty, the magick user must rest and let their energy repopulate on its own, or refill their reserves from an Abyss. All can instinctually access an Abyss for this purpose, though not all draw from them with the same efficiency and speed.   Injury and sickness cause most magick users to refill their wells more slowly. The more severe the injury or sickness, the longer the well takes to replenish, just as the body takes longer to heal.
 
Wells are housed in what scholars term "the magickal body". The magical body inhabits the same space as the physical one, just in a different layer. All beings and things have this body, whether they have the capability to use magick or not. Non-magickal religious thinkers think of it as the soul, though people who wield never view it that way.   In living creatures, this well is found just below the breast, in the center of the torso.
 
Types of Wells
  There are several types of wells.  
  • The Nine Abysses

    Each Abyss stores magickal energy for use by sylfaodolon and wielders. The Abysses that align with magickal natures are the ones that refill wells most quickly. For instance, Sikode refills his power from the Ice or the Greenroot Abyss. While he can use other Abysses to re-energize, it will take longer for him to do so. In principle, there is no reason for a magick user to draw from a well outside their magickal nature. In practice, certain spells and situations can place the appropriate Abyss out of reach, and the magick user must use a different one to re-charge.
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  • Personal Wells

    Personal wells are as varied as magick users themselves. Some have the equivalent to a drop in a bucket, and those people cannot perform spells. Others, like sylfaodolon, rarely run dry unless they are engaging another sylf in battle. Typical, well-trained human wielders have enough energy to constantly wield basic spells for around eight 'marks before tiring. Once more advanced spells are employed, the amount of time until a well runs dry is quickly diminished.   A child trains to draw magick from deeper and deeper in their wells, usually reaching their limits by age twenty-five. There are no exercises that can increase the depth one is born with.
 
Spells targeting the most powerful wielder on a battlefield and limiting their ability to refuel are common. This explains why governments tend to classify wielding power as top-secret and why mystery artists who work for royalty and nobles try to mask their power natures. Results vary.   These targeted spells are only as powerful as the being wielding them, and strong mystery artists can break or worm around those cast by weaker opponents--whether they are able to do so in a timely manner is a different tale.
 
A wielder can act as a well for another person. The transfer of power is normally purposeful, since attempting to siphon magick from an unwilling other tends to use up more energy than is gained.
 
 
 
  • Objects

    Some magick users fill an object with magickal energy that they can directly access at a later date. These objects can be anything, though some hold magickal energy better than others (a feather is a shallow well that might help a wielder perform a single basic spell, while a similar-sized crystal can hold a couple of days' worth of energy).   Magick users can draw power directly from an object and use it, rather than absorbing it to refill their personal well. Most wielders place spells on these objects so no one else can use or tamper with them, though items used for training purposes are available to all students. Access to the objects, whether locked or unlocked, is through a spell key.   Battlewielders and healers tend to carry object wells because, during stressful situations of life and death, it is not always convenient to connect to an Abyss and wait while their well refills.
     
      Objects that are good power sources
    • Bluedrop Crystals
    • Nemble Island Gold-touched Beach Sand
    • Fossils
    • Glass/Mirrors made with Silver Water Sand
    • Water
    • Blood
     
      Objects that are poor power sources
    • Feathers
    • Pumice
    • Untreated dirt
    • Fur/Hair
    • Cooked foods
    • Iron
    • Anything that's very dry
 
Bluedrop Crystal, a favorite magick container for shadowartists
 
  • Pools

    Pools are magickal wells maintained by institutions. They are larger than personal wells and meant to be used by numerous individuals. Pools are typically found beneath ground, encased in a magickally-protected fountain-like shell with one or more projections that funnel the magick to a tip. The tip is where wielders linked to the pool access the magick, using a spell key.   Tips can be the jut of magick into the air (like water in a fountain) or a solid projection, like a vane.   Pools can either be refilled by members of the institution, or linked to an Abyss and refilled from that magick source. Power given by individuals meld into a general essence that anyone can use without difficulty, but when drawn from an Abyss, the magickal nature of that Abyss remains with the magick. Typically, institutions prefer a general essence to one of a specific magickal leaning, though healing centers tend to use the Greenroot Abyss as a power source.   Pools have a variety of uses, from refilling personal wells, adding energy to research spells, to powering defensive wieldings. The only limit to what a pool can power is its size.
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  • Lakes

    Lakes are vast, deep wells. They are employed by royal palace complexes, militaries, dragon lairs, and similarly large entities that need a lot of magickal power to fuel a variety of tasks.   Lakes, like pools, can be fed by individuals or Abysses, but can also draw power from their surroundings using magickal lines or lattices that suck up earthen/plant/animal residual energy. Due to their size, they must be maintained; unlike pools, they rarely dwindle and fail, but sit and gather energy. If this energy is not siphoned, bad things can happen if it breaks through the containing wall.   Once created, the only way to access a lake is through the projections. These projections are always keyed. If a brave someone decides to chance a dip without the key, they normally burn to ash within moments (does not apply to deities, though they can be burned by the lake, like one burns their finger on a stove). This means, if something goes wrong, chances of containing the magickal fallout are slim.
 
 
The royal palace in Shayd has a lake deep beneath the physical structure. It is fed by a religious order called the Sacrificials, who, by sylf ordinance, drain themselves dry keeping it filled. The lake powers the palace's magickal defenses, but also allows scholars and mystery artists to conduct power-intensive studies.   If triggered, the lake places an ancient, magickal defensive wall around the old city borders, and those left outside must use specific, keyed entrances to gain access.
 
 
Glass Volcano's lake
  Dragon lairs get their energy from lakes. These lakes power the everyday workings, which include things like lighting and temperature, defenses, and other uses. The Glass Volcano's lake runs the Rock Garden, an underground space designed to reflect a Condi forest garden. It even has a fake sun and moon that rise and set with the real ones, kept in motion by the well's magick.

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