Familiar Spirits

Overview

All children born with innate magical ability attract a familiar spirit during their first year of life — these familiar spirits are created from the underlying forces of the world when the mage is brought into it and ultimately return when the mage dies. Familiar spirits adopt the form of an animal native to the region and are usually the first indication that a child is special, and even before the young mage has learned to speak they are communicating with their familiar spirit through simple thoughts and emotion. As they grow older and begin to pick up spoken language, their bond with their familiar develops to allow for more complex telepathic conversations, and as the mage matures so does the familiar, which is born knowing its name, the mage to whom it belongs (and who it 'owns' in return) and its purpose: to guide and protect.

The relationship between mage and familiar is more intimate than a relationship between lovers. Familiar spirits are tangible creatures with a physical body and can be killed, and although it is not always a death sentence for the mage that it's bonded to, the mage will never acquire another familiar and lore is filled with stories of mages who spiraled into deep depression following the death of their familiar and chose to commit suicide rather than live with the rift it left behind.

Familiar spirits do not have a sex — there is little point, as they are incapable of reproducing — but will settle on a gender based on what makes the mage most comfortable when the mage is still very small. The familiar's chosen gender is not an indication of the mage's sexuality or own gender identity; it is what it independently decides to be and that is all, though its name always compliments an inherent aspect of the mage's disposition ("Hush", "Shines-in-the-Dark", "Storm Dancer", "Winter's Grief", "Seeks-the-Dead" or "Heart Song").

Familiar spirits are not capable of communicating with anyone other than their bonded mage with the exception of other familiar spirits or skinwalkers in their animal form, and can change form at will (but are always limited to the shape of animals native to the region).

The following is a suggestive list of species native or reintroduced to the game's locale (but is by no means exclusive):

  • adder
  • badger
  • bat (many kinds)
  • beaver
  • crow (carrion)
  • crow (hooded)
  • deer (red)
  • deer (roe)
  • dormouse
  • eagle (golden)
  • eagle (sea)
  • elk
  • fox (red)
  • goose (snow)
  • goshawk
  • hare
  • hedgehog
  • kestrel
  • lynx
  • magpie
  • mallard
  • mole
  • moose
  • mouse (wood)
  • mouse (harvest)
  • osprey
  • otter (river)
  • owl (barn)
  • owl (tawny)
  • owl (snowy)
  • pine marten
  • raven
  • razorbill
  • reindeer
  • robin
  • seal (grey)
  • shrew
  • skua (arctic)
  • snake (grass)
  • sparrow (common)
  • sparrowhawk
  • squirrel (grey)
  • squirrel (red)
  • swan (mute)
  • swan (tundra)
  • toad
  • tern (arctic)
  • vole (common)
  • vole (water)
  • walrus
  • weasel
  • wild boar
  • wildcat
  • wolf

Familiars of Dornie

  • Cold-Front
  • Darklight
  • Forge
  • Greets-the-Sun
  • Heart Song
  • Hush
  • Keeps-to-the-Shade
  • Masque
  • Mercury
  • Midnight
  • Raven's Tongue
  • Sage
  • Sarva-vata-saha
  • Stalwart
  • Stands-Fast
  • Traa-dy-Liooar