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Patrick Stevens

Former mathematics student at the University of Cambridge; now a software engineer.

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I have stumbled across a LessWrong post on the importance of seeing what is real for just how cool it is. It lists such examples as:

  • Vibratory Telepathy.  By transmitting invisible vibrations through the very air itself, two users of this ability can share thoughts.  As a result, Vibratory Telepaths can form emotional bonds much deeper than those possible to other primates.
  • Psychometric Tracery.  By tracing small fine lines on a surface, the Psychometric Tracer can leave impressions of emotions, history, knowledge, even the structure of other spells.  This is a higher level than Vibratory Telepathy as a Psychometric Tracer can share the thoughts of long-dead Tracers who lived thousands of years earlier.  By reading one Tracery and inscribing another simultaneously, Tracers can duplicate Tracings; and these replicated Tracings can even contain the detailed pattern of other spells and magics.  Thus, the Tracers wield almost unimaginable power as magicians; but Tracers can get in trouble trying to use complicated Traceries that they could not have Traced themselves.

I thought I would give a few more. First, I hereby rename The Eye (as that post’s author names this ability) to Force Perception, and I dub a user of any of these magics a Mage.

  • Modular Incarnation. An extremely powerful technique that allows enormous flexibility of function, Modular Incarnation is a method of creating superstructures out of tiny Modules, each specialised for a specific task. Out of a single generic Module, a huge variety of specialised Modules can be created, which together can be assembled into structures which can channel various other magics, including Modular Incarnation itself. Thus can an Incarnator increase eir abilities by leaps and bounds from the moment of the birth of eir Incarnatory power. The Incarnator must be wary of this ability, for in its nigh-unimaginable power lies the danger of upsetting the balance of the Modules: an Incarnator can become overrun by eir own frantically replicating Modules, the tide of which is as yet very hard to stem, even using the greatest achieved extent of the Ultimate Power.
  • Elemental Shielding. Users of this passive ability are granted a flexible, regenerating defence against fire, earth, air and water. It also gives the user a constant diagnostic of eir surroundings, allowing the Shielder to understand what adjustments to make to eir environment without even thinking about it.
  • Infiltration Adaptation. One of the most successful forms of attack that can be made on a Mage is the insertion of weapons so small that even the greatest of Force Perceptors cannot detect them. These weapons are a perversion of Modular Incarnation, and as such have the potential to be immensely powerful, but users of the Infiltration Adaptation ability can detect and neutralise them by creating a defence consisting of many thousands of Modules, each tailored to be highly effective against a single weapon that was once used against the Mage. In this way, each unsuccessful attack strengthens the Mage: after only a short period to gather eir strength, the Mage recovers, usually with no discernible damage dealt.
  • The Web of Pure Extraction. Among the many ways to apply the Ultimate Power, the WPE may be one of its purest instantiations. Thousands of Extractors have together spent thousands of years in building a magnificent edifice which lies just outside this world, intersecting everywhere yet nowhere tangible. Through this power, Extractors can predict with staggering accuracy the outcomes of events happening at all scales, from the level of the fabric of reality itself up to levels encompassing all that is known to exist, and even further. Extractors can use the structure already created to solve problems that no other art can; and the structure is so well integrated with itself that particularly strong Extractors may use parts of the structure to affect other parts which lesser Extractors deem totally unrelated.
  • The Web of Mental Distribution. Closely related in structure to the Web of Pure Extraction (to the extent that its name even derives from the WPE), the WMD represents the culmination of decades of work to integrate the arts of Psychometric Tracery with the Force. Through use of an abstracted version of Psychometric Tracery, users of the WMD may share thoughts across enormous distances and times, connecting all Distributors to better fuel the Ultimate Power.