Tools of Magick: Natural Sources of Mortal Mana 

In addition to using the elements as portals through which to draw what mana he can, the magicker can also seek out the substances in which nature stores mana that can be tapped at any time. The number of points of mana carried in what quantity of these materials will be entirely up to the GM, but the magicker can find out the specific number of mana points through the Sense Mana/Magick ability or the Read Object or Reveal Magick dweomers.

Before it may be tapped for use it must first be awakened with a “Magick Charm”, such as is also used to awaken the magickal properties in herbs and animal substances, as described in the passage on “Talismans & Amulets” and also used for making Touchstones (as follows). Once awakened in this way it must be attuned before the Wizard can tap the POT of mana within it.

Alternately, if the wizardly owner has the luxury of time to wait until he has carried it around and/or kept it in his private chambers with his other personal possessions long enough for it to fall within the bounds of the parameters of ownership as defined in the “Read Object” and “Finding” Spirit Skills or dweomers. When that point has been reached, the object or substance will have picked up the owner’s vibration naturally, so that the process of attunement is unnecessary. At this point, the mana resident in these substances or items can be used in exactly the same way as the POT drawn from the Ambience for casting, or to decrease the WND cost of a casting, instead, but in the manner of a Touchstone, either a little at a time or all at once, at the player’s discretion.

For this purpose, each crystal and gem in its rough state will hold a number of points of Earth mana equal to [(d5) x (d5)] multiplied by its carat weight in POT. Gems of various types carry different types of power in them along with their Earth mana, the specific power resident that may be drawn from it aside from the Earth mana will be determined by the particular type of gem. The POT in an Aquamarine may be drawn out as water mana, for example. When the POT is drawn from it, the type of power it is drawn as will be up to the Wizard’s discretion.

Nuggets of native (alluvial deposit) metals will also hold power. Of the gems, the mana contained by garnets can be drawn out as either Earth or Fire (player’s choice). Gold and diamonds will hold mana that can be drawn as either Fire or Earth or Sun mana (player’s discretion). The mana in copper may be drawn out as either Earth or Fire (player’s choice). Silver holds mana that can be drawn out as either Water or Earth or Moon mana. Mined metal ores will hold mana, too, but that will depend on the purity of the ore and the GM’s generosity. Much better to smelt the ore down and extract the metal, or use magick to perform the same task.

The actual amount of metal in a piece of ore, which will determine the amount of mana waiting within it, will be determined by the purity of the ore, the percentage of metal within it. If the volume of ore is known and the percentage of purity (the portion of it that is metal content), then the volume of metal is known, and the weight can be determined and converted to grams.

As a rule of thumb, native gold, 24k pure as found in (alluvial) placer deposits will have 10 points of POT per gram weight. Native silver will have 5 points of POT per gram weight. Copper, mercury, and all other lesser metals will have 2 points of POT per gram weight.

Alloys made by the hand of Man after the smelting out of the raw metal will have no mana left in them at all.

Air and Water mana will be contained in hail stones, at least until they melt. They will each have 10 points of POT in them for each inch of diameter (1/8th inch diameter = 2 POT; 1/4th inch diameter = 3 POT; 1/2 inch diameter = 5 POT), but losing 1 point of mana approximately every 10 minutes unless somehow held or stored at a temperature that prevents their melting. The player and GM will please note that such hailstones MUST be naturally occurring, not the product of some magickally orchestrated or inspired storm.

Water mana can also be found in pearls, coral, or seashells. Of these, pearls will carry the most power.

Pearls are measured by size but also weight. In size, 6.5 to 7mm pearls should be most common, 7.5 mm weighing about 3 carats. (1 carat = 4 grains = 1/5th gram) The largest pearl in the world is 238 mm in diameter, almost 9.4 inches, and weighs 6.4kg, which is 1,280 carats, or 14.1 lbs.!

In the same fashion as precious gems in the rough, pearls will hold a number of points of POT in mana equal to [(d5) x (d5)] multiplied by its carat weight in POT, though Water mana instead of Earth. For those pearls that are perfectly round or at least close enough to the naked eye, this will be [(d5) x 5] in POT.

Baroque or fresh-water pearls will have only half this amount.

Pearls are not dense like gemstones, but made of an organic secretion called nacre from the living organism in the oyster, the same as the iridescent substance coating the inside of the oyster shell. One pearl is found for every 30 to 40 oysters opened, but those that are perfectly round are rare among them. Pearls may come in shades of white or cream, light brown, pink or rose, gray (silver), yellow (gold, champagne), green, blue, all the primary colors as well as peach, blue-gray, dove gray or even black. A hint of blue could indicate that Air mana may be drawn from it as well as Water, but this is entirely up to the GM’s discretion.

Whether saltwater or fresh, pearls can come in a number of shapes. After 50 to 75 years or so of common wear or use a pearl may start to rot, the layers of nacre breaking down and crumbling away. When treated well, kept away from heat, kept clean of acidic body oils and cosmetics, or worn seldom and stored so it cannot be scratched or scarred by other, harder gems or pieces of (metal) jewelry, a pearl may last as long as 300 years, but averaging 150 years, freshwater or “baroque” pearls averaging only 70 years. As the pearl ages, it will lose its POT, crumbling away to nothing as it loses its last point.

Coral here refers only to the dead husk the tiny sea creatures who make it leave behind, not to living coral. The type of coral is irrelevant (brain coral, stag horn, etc.), all will bear the same amounts of Water mana.

All coral carries (2d5) points of POT in Water mana per ounce of weight avoirdupoids.

Seashells will carry the least, and then only those that are whole and undamaged. Part of their power comes from the living organism that dwelt within it for its lifetime, like coral and the organic origins of pearls. All Water mana in a seashell will be released into the world at once when the shell is damaged, to dissipate at a rate of 1 point per CS until gone.

Seashells will carry (d5) points of POT in Water mana for each inch of the shell’s measure in its largest dimension. This makes the giant clam shell a great find, at as much as 4ft across and 440 lbs.

Once awakened and attuned to the Wizard, points of POT in mana can be retrieved for casting any dweomer from any of the mortal sources described above in the same manner as any Touchstone. There will be no limit on the number of points of POT that may be drawn at any one time. A source may be emptied in a single casting if the Wizard desires.

Of the materials discussed above, some can be recharged, like a battery, or a Touchstone (as follows), but only if some power (at least a POT of 1) is left in it. Crystals, precious gems, and metals must be buried at the dark of the moon and left undisturbed in the earth for 1 full cycle of the moon (28 days) for each point of POT to be restored. The only exceptions to this will be silver and gold. Silver must be buried under the full moon on a cloudless night (GM’s discretion) and retrieved only under a full moon. Gold must be buried under the midday sun on a cloudless day (GM’s discretion), but it must also be retrieved under the midday sun only after the spring equinox and before the autumnal equinox, when the sun’s influence rules, flowing through the earth.

The player will please note that this practice will only restore Earth mana. If the character wants to recharge Fire mana in a diamond, garnet, gold or other fire-ruled substance, he must put it where the light and radiant heat from a fire can be felt and let them to sit there continuously without allowing the fire to die for one full cycle of the sun (day), beginning at either sunrise or midday, for each point of POT to be restored. These substances can hold either Earth or Fire mana, or the magicker can imbue points of both. If he recharges it with both, he may draw the mana out as either Earth or Fire, regardless of the number of each with which he imbued it. The mana in pearls and coral can only be renewed by returning them to the sea or ocean under a full moon, pearls buried shallowly in the water’s bed, coral and shells simply sitting in the waters on the sandy bottom. There they must stay, never knowing the air for one full cycle of the moon (28 days, until the next full moon) for each point of POT in Water mana to be restored. The player will please note that the freshwater pearls can only recover their mana from bodies of fresh water. To restore Water mana to silver, the metal must be put in some natural body of water (not man-made) under the full moon, salt or fresh water makes no difference, where sunlight will not touch it, again for one full cycle of the moon (28 days, until the next full moon) for each point of POT in Water mana to be restored.

These restrictions are intended to make the Wizard conscious of the true value of the mana in the objects.

The only way around the methods described for restoring the POT of natural mana in an object or substance is through the Naming magick “Quintessential Charm”, which must be performed as Low Magick and in accordance with the restrictions on timing as far as phase of the moon or sun described previously. The mana in an object or substance IS in effect its quintessence as defined in that dweomer’s description.

Those who do not have this dweomer in the repertoire will have no idea that this short-cut exists.