Sorcery is the magical science of the power of raw amorphia subjected to the manipulation of the mind through the Orb. In its most basic form, it consists of the drawing of energy from the Orb then forming it according to one's desire and directing it at the object of one's desire. Sorcery should therefore have two defining elements: amorphia and necrophia (the term is possibly interchangable with trellanstone in this context; necrophia is found in trellanstone which the Orb is crafted from and is the element which responds to the direction of sentience). Sorcery is considered Dragaeran magic, and the art of using it requires precision.
Only Imperial citizens (those who belong to a specific House) are granted access to the Orb.
Also, some sorcerous spells can be purchased and released according to the will of the user.
Some Uses of Sorcery
- most basic offensive spell: blowing stuff up
- checking the time or weather
- teleport traces
- teleport blocks
- internal bleeding
- individual protection (magical and/or physical) spells
- physical shield (commonly used for rain)
- compensating for night blindness
- genetic examination
History of Sorcery
Long ago, in the mists of prehistory the gods kicked the Jenoine off of Dragaera. This event proceeded the occurence of the Greater Sea of Chaos. Somebody (possibly Kieron or one of his relatives, as the ability is inherited in his line) figured out that they could manipulate the amorphia in the Sea and use it to do things. This was Elder Sorcery.
Using amorphia directly, or through purplish or bluish stones of solidified, handleable amorphia, is very dangerous. Adron's Disaster is an example of a way Pre-Empire sorcery can go awry.
Then Zerika the First created the Imperial Orb, which is made of a substance called trellanstone, which channels amorphia to allow citizens of the Empire with sufficient ability to use its power without the risks of playing with it directly or nearly directly.
Sorcery has made metal armor dangerous as large amounts of metal attract sorcerous energy. Metal weapons pose a lesser threat, due to the fact that a weapon's mass is much less than the metal mass of a suit of armor - Lyorn warriors likewise rely on metal vambraces in combat, again due to the fact that this amount of metal represents an acceptable risk in return for the protection they provide a trained warrior.
How Sorcery Relates To Other Branches of Magic
As mentioned above, the distinction between Elder Sorcery and its contemporary descendent is that the former is the science of amorphia but the latter is the science of amorphia and the Orb - or more precisely, necrophia, which is the element within the Orb allowing it to refine amorphia so that the mind may manipulate it without risking dissolving matter into nothingness.
Sorcery is distinct from witchcraft in that witchcraft draws on one's internal power, whereas sorcery draws on an external power source. Sorcery is also much more culturally acceptable in the Dragaeran Empire; witchcraft is considered Eastern superstition (even though some Dragaerans can and have learned it). Furthermore, sorcery is always a solo practice. If a sorcerer casts a spell, its effect relies solely on him - none other may boost its range or its potency, for he has no way to add his own power to that of the original caster. Witchcraft, on the other hand, can be a group activity, where covens of witches combine their abilities to achieve greater effects (such an act was involved in keeping Castle Black floating a half-mile above the ground). Another, more subtle difference is that sorcery becomes more difficult in proportion to the complexity of a spell, not in relation to the amount of power that is used. In other words, a sorcerer may draw large amounts of energy without encountered much of a problem, but once he begins applying them he or she must exert effort based on the nature of this application. Witchcraft is demanding according to how a witch choses to spend his or her energy to achieve a goal; if one is creative, it might produce great effects with minimum effort.
Necromancy is related to sorcery, focusing on death, becoming undead, and traveling to different dimensions or planes of existence. Since the Interregnum, some necromantic spells have come into common sorcerous usage, such as revivification and counterspells preventing one from revivifying a body. The Necromancer and Loraan are two known necromancers in Dragaera; certain members of the Left Hand of the Jhereg are also likely to be necormancers.