Witches inspire awe. Witches share a connection with the universe – the earth, the elements, Mother Nature herself – common people cannot even dream about. Witches maintain the order within what has no order, within the chaos that reigns naturally. They are kind. They are the kindest people, the first to break up conflict, the first to share their bread, the first to offer their magic for free. And the witches' magic, oh what glorious sight! Between their whispers and gestures the world bends and twists and shifts – but the world does not take orders from witches and witches respect Mother Nature too much to give the world orders. What happens during magic is a fair exchange. All witches have a contract with Mother Nature, and all parties honour it. My witch was fond of warmth. She would wear more layers than necessary – a regular cloak underneath her fur cloak at times – and sip hot chocolate at all times of the year. At night she would ask me to curl at her feet to keep them warm. My witch's personality was the warmest I have ever known. Her smile lit smiles in those around her and when she laughed she did so loudly and with heart and with the intent of letting everyone know she was happy to be alive.

Witches inspire terror. Witches are unstable and prone to exploding at any moment, and any who has seen villages burn down and mountains collapse and waves engulf coasts can attest to it. The contract sealed with Mother Nature requires a something none can understand but all possess. It is that something that puts a time limit on a witch's control over their own power. For that reason, witches are considered a danger; witches are to the people what wolves are to sheep according to human laws. Guards riding black and white horses gallop on the trail of rumours and sightings. They follow the sheep's words and break into taverns touted as witch safe havens, slam their fists on a table and announce that any witch present is under arrest. When they arrive at the witch havens the witches are long gone. Witches are to the guards what rabbits are to falcons, but witches lack a rabbit's speed and instead must be cunning and careful to avoid their predator. My witch's affinity was necromancy. It is harder to identify a necromancer than a pyromancer or terramancer or cryomancer, but that comes with the burden of necromancy being the most taboo of magics. My witch could be crueller than the guards we constantly fled from. Sometimes the chase became so exhausting she could do nothing but cry and scream and yell at me and berate me and tell me that everything was my fault and that she wished she could have another familiar. We were alone in the world. My witch was an oddity among her generation, too old for the fledgling witches who had only just forged their contract with Mother Nature and who were beginning to discover perils that had remained hidden until then; too young for the wise and experienced witches who distrusted strangers and young strangers especially because they had survived the guards and their own loss of control for so long and could never anticipate whether the next sunrise would bring their demise along with it.

My witch's name was Penelope and I will avenge her death.
mother nature

Mother Nature is the first witch. She is worshipped as the world's creator and destroyer - her worship is referred to as the old religion, its followers are few due to discrimination. Followers of the old religion are allies to witches. Mother Nature is not a physical being. She assumes whatever form she desires - be it human or animal - but discards those shells when they are no longer of use, and those shells then dissipate into the wind.


All magic in this world comes from Mother Nature and is channelled through witches. For the channelling process to work, a woman must form a contract with Mother Nature to become a witch; however, the contract's terms are unknown.

As with all things associated with Mother Nature and the old religion, magic too is illegal. While enforcers of the law are quick to terminate witches when found, followers of the old religion welcome magic as Mother Nature's gift, and aid witches as best they can.

Not all magic is equal. Upon forging a contract with Mother Nature, a witch will find that her magic will not be like other witches. Not unlike fingerprints, magic too is unique to each witch - both in terms of element (a witch with an affinity for pyromancy, for instance, cannot communicate with the dead as a necromancer can) and range of spells. Witches can destroy and create, but no one witch can do both.


The perquisites for being a witch are not fully understood. Only women can become witches and thus wield magic; the kinds of women who become witches tend to be social outcasts, women who feel society has failed them and, either by choice or obligation, alienate themselves from it. There are two paths to witchhood.

The most common is to be approached by Mature Nature - disguised as an elderly woman - and be offered a chance to forge the contract. Mother Nature knows when and where to appear, the women she selects are desperate - none have the heart to turn down the contract. Or maybe some do, but none ever hears from them again.

The second way is to summon Mother Nature. Although the consensus is that none would voluntarily become a witch, there are those who desire Mother Nature's power above all else. Summoning Mother Nature is a gruesome business the details of which are kept secret. Witches who voluntarily choose to become so are frequently fuelled by rage, hatred and vengeance; it shows in their magic, which is exclusively destructive.

Aside from the persecution, the life of a witch is made miserable by the knowledge that any second, she could explode. When discussing witches, the term explode refers to the utter loss of control witches display shortly before their end. When this happens, it is civilians who pay with their lives - and it is for that reason that witches are seen as a danger. Nobody knows why explosions happen or if there are any ways to prevent them.

Due to the world's hostility, witches frequently band together for safety. Nowadays these groups hardly reach half a dozen members, a stark contrast to the covens with hundreds of members that used to exist in the past. Groups of witches do not welcome new members, sometimes aggressively so.


As Mother Nature channels magic through witches, witches too can channel magic through a familiar. Familiars are animal companions to witches. Cats and corvids are the most common (having been associated with the occult for centuries) but other animals can also fulfil the role, such as dogs, foxes, or birds of prey.

When selected by a witch to become a familiar, an animal is imbued with magic that allows it to gain near-human intelligence, awareness, and grasp on language. Aside from providing much-needed companionship, familiars also grant witches further control over their magic. It is rumoured that having a familiar can delay a witch's exploding but, as with almost all things magic-related, it is mere speculation.

When a witch leaves a familiar, the creature will almost certainly die soon after. There have been reports of witch-less familiars surviving and living, though such animals are easily identifiable due to their unnatural behaviour and, when found by the guards, put out of their misery.


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