Career and Family Life of Mages

  • A while back I wrote a little scene based of Tyry & Kat's recent chronicles, for Valentine's Day. Originally I wanted to write a real story with a plot, but I'm lazy. But when I was piecing the story together in my mind, I had a couple of questions about Mage life in Cythera.

    The first thing I wonder about is whether all mages have to serve as judges after graduating school. The book Basis of Magic implies they do,

    Basis of Magic said:

    ...The Way of a Mage begins as an apprentice, who studies under a master so that one day they may become a student at the Magisterium in Pnyx.
    It is as a student that they gain their grimoire and learn their first spells. Under watchful eyes, they learn spells from scrolls using the information in their grimoire....
    After the Magisterium, the young Mage begins a period of public service as a Judge, using their powers and learning to arbitrate disputes in the land, as well as help to enforce the laws of Alaric.
    If they wish to expand their powers, they then begin a period as a Freemage, living as a hermit so they can devote all their time to study and learning.
    Finally, after a period as a Freemage, they return to the Magisterium to prove their powers and skills, attempting to become a Master. Once a Master, they can live wherever they’d like, even teaching at the Magisterium or taking up an apprentice of their own.

    However, the students in Pnyx imply that Clytemnestra is going to straight into Freemage studies after she graduates,

    Pnyx students said:

    Clytemnestra is another student – she’s been here longer than the rest of us. She should be Freemage soon.

    I wonder if that's just a mistake, or if, since there's only four cities in Cythera (& as far as we know, only one judge per city), not all mages have to serve in the judicial system. (For the purposes of the story-scene I wrote, I pretended all mages were expected to do a period of some sort of voluntary service, but not necessarily as a judge. I doubt that's true, but it seemed to fit the story alright.)

    I also wondered about having families, since Protesilaus was getting married in the story. Protesilaus was not yet a freemage, so how could he live in isolation if he's married? Are spouses/families allowed to live with hermit freemages? Or do they have to temporarily leave their families? Or do they just not pursue further study/mastery if they already have a family? Are they expected not to get married until they become masters? (which doesn't seem very practical considering how old the masters seem to be)

    Then I wondered, are mages even allowed to get married? I can't think of any married mages in the game. If Alaric is the closest thing Cythera has to a god, then are the mages like priests? But if mages don't have kids, how are there so many of them? Doesn't magic run in families? Eioneus and Semele are mage siblings. But I guess they're the only mage-characters I can think of who are related. Timon's sister Larisa isn't a magess, so maybe it's just random. I think it's likely that gandreas just didn't bother making NPCs for mages' families. There's not very many families in the game anyway, and those ones are pretty small. If that's really the rate Cytherans are reproducing, they'll die off before long : ****x

    So, opinions? Do mages have to serve as judges? And are they allowed to have families? Can they have a family and pursue freemagery/mastery? None of this matters, but I figure this board could use a new thread. Maybe.

  • As far as I know, the game does not indicate that there is a specific prohibition against mages marrying. That said, there are no known married mages, and the requirements of the job seem to suggest that it would be difficult for a mage to have a family. It is also worth noting that most people in Cythera are still wary of the mages, trusting them because Alaric wishes them to. It is possible that marriage is permitted but is almost unheard of.

    My guess is that the isolation would include families, although there seems to be no prohibition against visiting a freemage or a freemage passing through a town. Timon actively joins your group which would seem to violate the requirements, but Lindus might have granted him leeway given the circumstances.

    Given the relatively low number of judges, it is possible that every mage has to fill the position at some point or other but that it can be deferred until after one has served as a freemage. Alternatively, there may be more judges than seen in the game or, as you suggested, mages might meet this requirement through some period of a civic service.

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