Breath-of-Life and the Toy Lifecycle

A toy's life is a complex miracle involved in lots of mysteries and uncertainties, from its origin to its end destiny.
They have given this process names and lore to try to point down the deceptively fuzzy transitions between states but, tragically, they can only try to understand the rules that govern them, for they can never manipulate them.  

How Toys Come to Be

While the specifics are unclear, most toys come to their world already shaped and on the form they will stay in for the rest of their time.
Parts Bank by Naelin
Most of them originate in a place called "factory" and are then sent to a different location known as "shop", where they are chosen by the All-Mighty to be taken to inhabit their home world.
Others, hugely depending on their world of origin, might be created by the hands of All-Mighties themselves, who put together inanimate materials until the toy is shaped.
The least and rarer among them are known as chimaeras, and are created usually by Breath-of-Life All-Mighties or even by toys themselves using the pieces of disassembled, dead ones to create a new individual. Chimaeras are highly controversial in the toy societies from the World of Plaza, but became more popular the more it developed technologically.  

The Nebulous State of Being Alive

Life and not-life are not clear-cut for toys. Death might happen, or you might just end up unalive for a long, long while.
Consciousness is fleeting, and the tumescence of unaliveness will catch most toys unaware.
An All-Mighty's hand by Naelin

But they can all agree, it all starts with an unalive toy catching the attention of a Breath-of-Life All-Mighty. Those are a small minority of the All-Mighty, and are generally young, small ones. They are directly responsible for the toys' lives and purposes and care for them with nurturing dedication.
Once one of these All-Mighties decides a toy is worth it, their life will start.  


The breath-of-life is the name toys give to the life essence they receive from their All-Mighties when they are around. It gives the toys conscience, goals and identity. These are strongest when the All-Mighty is close to them, and only in some occasions can a toy progress their endeavours while the All-Mighty is away.  


The toy may or may not receive a name, or even a continued identity.
Sometimes, they will wake up one day and live a marvellous adventure, just to become unalive hours later, and wake up again someday in the future, a blank slate with no memories, fresh for a new task. This might sound like a horrifying destiny, but the toy will not suffer, and perhaps one day they will not be reset.   Those toys with fleeting identities are known as stock. Others might pity them, but in the end, they learn to accept their existence as people they will meet once, and that will not be related to the one they meet the next time in any other way than inhabiting the same body.


Wiretail by Naelin
Some of the toys, generally the ones the Breath-of-Life All-Mighty is most fond of, will enjoy a continued life and identity, and sometimes even a unique name. Those are known as heroes, and generally enter the faction they are more appropriate for based on their scale as soon as they arrive in Tierras Mágicas (Or their respective worlds).   Heroes have much better chances than stock at a long life, even staying alive for several years. It is rare for a hero toy to end up dead or unalive while their All-Mighty still has a strong Breath-of-Life. Usually, their identity is only destroyed after years when, for one reason or another, they end up in the hands of a different All-Mighty.

Death of a Toy

When the limits of life are blurry, so are the limits of death and unlife.
Toy life is intrinsically linked to the Breath-of-Life All-Mighties, but not necessarily to just one.
Since an All-Mighty might lose interest in keeping a toy alive for even years, or might pass them on to a different All-Mighty, a toy might go through periods of being unalive, a transition, indeterminate period between losing their consciousness and identity and gaining the same or a new one.
Death is a bit more permanent, and it is often at the whims of a bigger All-Mighty deciding that their time is over.  

Being Dead

Toy death can occur in two ways, by a matter of terrible accident or by All-Mighty action, though many times the occasion involves both at the same time.
A toy is said to be dead when they are destroyed beyond means for their All-Mighty to consider them useful. This can vary depending on the toy and the All-Mighty, as many toys afflicted with brokenness can stay alive or even be repaired.
  Many times, wandering All-Mighties would trample, drop or snap a toy's body as they perform their many inscrutable actions. On some other occasions, a toy's body might break due to old age or on an accident on their adventures, or in the most horrifying cases, some Breath-of-Life All-Mighties may be born evil and attack a toy on purpose.
Sometimes, a dead toy is not beyond repair, but instead, they have been purposefully killed to harvest their pieces for a parts bank.  

Being Unalive

In comparison to death, unlife is a transient state of being that all toys will experience, some of them many times. A toy is unalive when they're not destroyed, but has no breath-of-life.
This might be because they have just been created and no All-Mighty has gifted them consciousness, or for many other reasons, such as them becoming lost, having their faction disband, or their giver of life growing into a state of disinterest, becoming just a regular All-Mighty.   Stock toys go into unalive phases way more often than heroes. It is usual for them to stay unalive for extended periods of time, getting short streams of identity to fulfil a purpose before going back into nothingness.
However, it is more usual for heroes to be kept in an unalive state indefinitely by grown All-Mighties that lost their Breath-of-Life, while their world's stock gets almost always sent to a different world or passed into a new little All-Mighty.
Metaphysical, Divine

Raised from someone else's ashes

There are some rare ocassions where the dead are used to make the alive.
Some toys subject to customization or made as chimeras are created with parts taken from dead toys, and given the breath-of-life once their form is satisfyingly completed.   Courser is the most famous and first example of a chimera, assembled with parts of horse and human clicks.
Knight Sebastián by Naelin

Where is Sebastián?

Is Sebastián dead, crushed by the hands and tools of the wandering All-Mighties, or is he just unalive somewhere, perhaps a nostalgic decorative shell of a hero standing on a shelf?
Is he perhaps alive again, with his wiped memory having left a blank canvas for a new life in a different world?

Cover image: Glowing All-Mighty by Naelin


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27 Dec, 2022 07:50

Damn, Naelin. Why can you always hit me so hard with the way you describe Tierras Magicas? I guess I needed to cry this morning. Way more people need to read this world.

29 Dec, 2022 01:47

I guess I'm glad my little silly project has such an effect on some people. I like this one, I think I managed to put a bit more of what I had to say for it once I tweaked the title to make it a bit more comprehensive :)