Wednesday, August 24, 2016

World of the Godtypes

     The world Mercy Mendoza and Samson Aster encounter on their journey is very different from the standard, ordinary Earth, boasting godlike beings and an atmospheric ether field, which in turn allows the use of what ordinary people call magic: the realization of the "impossible."  This other Earth features three other variations on humans, aside from normal mortals: Godtypes, Remnants, and Theurgists.  It seems that worlds containing aberrant sub-species such as these are more inclined to grow unstable and fall apart sooner.
     Godtypes, commonly seen as a race of ascended humans, or perhaps beings in mortal guise, are in short "gods on earth."  They are essentially ageless, impervious to time, illness or injury, and often in possession of miraculous powers.  Despite being almost completely invulnerable to physical attacks, a clash between Godtypes wielding soul-forged weapons may prove fatal.  The only known way to physically kill a Godtype is to first break them mentally, making them wish for death, before dealing a decisive strike through either the back or heart.  It is known that the murder of a god, along with any other sort of assault or offense, will bring horrible misfortune to the perpetrator.
Though they can live for hundreds upon thousands of years, Godtypes will sometimes vanish, quietly, should they fade too far into obscurity, or find themselves with no further purpose on Earth.  This absence may go unnoticed for years, and no one has ever witnessed the actual disappearance.  As of the moment it is unknown what truly happens to the Godtype after "death."

Notable Godtypes

• Ricia Fraga (domain: resurrection)
• Fulcanelli Paramirum (alchemy)
• Veer Thakur (weapons mastery)
• Ark Townsend (necromancy/incomplete resurrection)
• Remiel Bain (second sight)
• Samson Aster (???)

     Known colloquially as "Rems", the Remnants are an engineered sub-species first created by fusing the human body with a Godtype's genetic material—or simply put, by grafting on parts and splicing genes in a largely occult procedure.  Most worlds with Godtypes do not contain Remnants, since the process of creation requires nectrotized Godtype tissue, and the gods are usually very hard to kill.  Not to mention that even slighting a Godtype can result in bad luck, mania, or death, so it's no wonder most Rems burned out early later on.  The majority that underwent the Godtype enhancement were looking for eternal life or power, but others were just unfortunate experiments used to perfect the surgery.  Like a family curse, the traits of the gods are passed on to future generations as well, but only to full-blooded Remnant children.

     While they do often gain varying abilities after augmentation (with their own form of bastardized Godtype ether production), all Rems are considered dangerous and unstable because, when overloaded by imperfect ether, their bodies and minds melt down in a process referred to as degeneration, which causes the afflicted Rem to lash out uncontrollably.  While they can return to normal in time, high-risk Rems are often sanctioned in specialized areas or outright killed after degeneration due to the threat they pose to innocent lives.

     Looking otherwise human, Rems seem to have greater durability and a longer lifespan than ordinary humans, but their bodies disintegrate upon death, almost in the way Godtypes mysteriously leave the Earth without leaving a trace of themselves behind.

Notable Rems

• Aspasie Trillistos (attribute: telepathy/mind-reading)
• "Saint" (creation of portals)
• "Proctor" (manipulating emotion and rationale)

     A Thaumaturge [thaw-muh-turge], is a mortal capable of bringing miracles into existence: a feat which falls into the realm of what humans call magic. At times a type of "soul variation" dubbed the Akashic Strain will present itself in otherwise normal people, giving them the capacity to channel ether (divine air) from the atmosphere and use it to essentially wish upon the universe.  It is far more likely for Thaumas to appear in worlds inhabited by Godtypes, who basically generate ether with their bodies.

     While most Thaumas are born with the ability to absorb ether, it is also possible to gain this capacity through years of training and exposure to Godtypes, though the resulting magic ability is much weaker than that of a Strain carrier's.

Notable Thaumas (by Akashic Strain)

• Eon Harken
• Caelan Gilday
• Mercy Mendoza (ether-rich worlds only)
• Hugo Lôi, founder of God's Pledge
• Reynaud de Vaux, former captain of the Palatine Guard

Making Miracles from Nothing

     Ether, or the air of the gods, is an invisible, nonphysical substance that is generated by Godtypes (like how a plant releases oxygen) and encapsulates some planets in an unseen energy field, which seems to somehow improve peace and productivity worldwide.  Alternate Earths with both Godtypes and a good ether field seem to be the happiest, but also at greater risk for destruction than those without.  Ether is also what allows for the miracle of magic, but only certain humans can channel it properly for use in spells and other kinds of magic. It's possible that someone from an Earth lacking ether can possess the Akashic Strain and learn to use magic once introduced to an ether-rich world by the Rooms.

     Comprising the most rudimentary form of magic are simple, single word incantations called Spell-Bindings: the easiest vocation for any Thaumaturge to master.  Every Binding is a weaponized wish, a highly personalized plea to the world imbued with the will and intention of the creator, to the point that Bindings are regarded as an extension of the soul. Most Thaumas choose quality over quantity when it comes to Bindings, maintaining a small and specialized arsenal in order to better capitalize on individual potency.

Examples of Bindings

• Eon Harken: Boost (temporarily increases endurance, reflexes and physical strength, at the cost of energy); Restore (repairs any cuts, bruises and potentially broken bones, but only on the user's body)
• Mercy Mendoza: Cushion (softens impacts or falls)

     Aside from Bindings, the most recognized vocation is classical magic, which involves converting ether into any one of the four elements (water, fire, earth and air). Fewer Thaumas are able to master classical magic due to most lacking the necessary affinity for any given element. The rarest of Thaumas--statistically one in five billion--can directly manipulate ether, or quintessence, as the fifth element. The act of affecting the ether is tantamount to seizing the natural law of the world, and allows for the crystallization of even the most improbable possibilities.

     By extension, quintessence can also be fused with the one of the other four elements to create a versatile material called prima materia, which is essentially ether materialized, and the purest form of each respective element. Though difficult to synthesize, prima substances have been a staple in the development of society, providing air free from pollutants, fires which burn indefinitely, arable soil in any environment, and potable water no matter the location


Last chapter:

I - The Torus

 

Next chapter: 

III - God's Pledge and the Pandemic

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