?

Log in

No account? Create an account

Reference: The Forbidden Spells

The Forbidden Spells are called as they are because using any one of them causes one of two things to happen--either an enormous surge of mana is drained from the Mana Tree or the target's soul is afflicted so heavily that the Goddess, the Elementals, and in turn the Wisdoms respond to it the way a normal person might respond to a migraine.  As such, using them grants the wielder immediate banishment of his soul to Hell, instant eradication, given an aura so vile that everyone around that person will become hostile towards him, or some combination of the above or possibly some other punishment.

The general populace by large is aware of the spells, what they mean in legend, and some scholars are even aware of the names of them, but primarily they are relatively "unknown."  They can't even be properly studied since they can't even be used against inanimate objects without raising some flags.  There are nine "natural" spells plus eight "created" spells.

The natural ones are considered so because of how long they've been around; most people assume they've existed since Fa'Diel itself was created, but this isn't entirely true.  Rather, they were created in Ancient Fa'Diel, possibly by the Artifact Mages or the Seven Angels themselves.  Why they were created is anyone's guess.  These nine are the most legendary, the least researched, and the most powerful, one in particular leagues above the others.

The created ones are considered so because they were devised during current Fa'Diel history, most of them developed by the Paladir family or by Cirius himself.  And where the natural ones are tied to the primary elements, these eight are tied to the sub-elements.  There is a bit of a workaround from the punishment regarding these--as they were definitely man-made, there is no immediate "divine punishment" for them, a fact Cirius personally takes advantage of with his rampant abuse of one spell in particular.

The Opposites and Elementals are each capable of their respective elemental spells while each Angel is fully capable of all spells, though fewer are aware of this knowledge.

Natural Forbidden Spells

Immolation:  the Fire spell.  Burns the very soul away, preventing a person from passing on through the after life and leaving behind an empty husk of a body.  Joshua is capable of this spell.
River of Power:  the Water spell.  Pulls water from a random source on the planet and channels it into pure power, creating a devastating "rail beam" that, if pointed downward and left uncontrolled, for example, could possibly sever the planet in two.  Elazul is capable of this spell.
Wind Shear:  the Wind spell.  Generates a radial burst of high-pressure vibrations that separate the flesh and muscle from bone and organs in a sickeningly precise manner (as impossible as it should be anatomically speaking), doing so (unusually) very slowly and keeping all nerves intact so the target(s) feel every second until the vital organs have fallen and stop functioning.  Only Xinnj has any mastery over this spell, and he frequents it.
Medusa's Javelin:  the Earth spell.  Grants the target's hand an aura that, upon touching anything, will petrify it instantly and cannot distinguish between animate and inanimate, friendly or hostile.
Armistice: the Light spell.  Gives physical form to the target's free will and then destroys it, rendering the target a complete slave to any suggestion from the wielder.  Unlike standard hypnosis, the target cannot be freed, and while hypnotized victims generally retain some "sense" in that, if you tell them to build a house and they do it then they acknowledge they are done and await a new order, the target must be told to stop doing something upon completion or it will continue to do it, either adding on to the house or building more and more houses until the target has killed himself from exhaustion.  Just as people need to breathe, the target will have an "involuntary need" to continue with the order given until told otherwise.
Gates of the Underworld: the Dark spell.  Creates one, possibly two, up to three framed double-doors several thousand feet in height and proportionately wide.  Anything that passes through will be sent straight to the Underworld unless it is "godly" in power, in which case the second will attempt to send it straight to Hell.  If the second fails, the third will erase it from existence.  With any door that opens, the Dead and Demonkind may freely leave their domains, and the more doors that open the more can escape.  Used as a last-minute barrier.  Amos is capable of this spell.
Infinity Barrier:  the Metal spell.  Generates a small, possibly larger barrier that is impenetrable so long as the caster remains alive, and it cannot be removed once in place without the caster's death.  Nothing without the caster's permission, living or magical or transient or whatever, can pass without the caster's oral, explicit permission.  Generally the "safest" of the spells to cast and the only one that does not immediately create a punishment provided the barrier is not too large.  This is the most understood and well-known of the spells.
Yggdrasil:  the Wood spell, the most powerful of all spells.  Generates a perfect replica of the Mana Tree, complete with its own infinite supply of mana that it attempts to distribute to the realm, and then explodes with enough force to destroy the world itself if not checked.  Only Dryxad has both the knowledge to manipulate it properly and the stamina to even create the spell--without the minimum enormous requirement of stamina, the caster will blow himself up in an attempt to create it.
Luna Divider:  the Moon spell.  Severs a person into each of his primary traits, giving them physical manifests and cloned appearances.  For example, an arrogant man may be split into his anger, his jealousy, his intelligence, and his pride, and thus four pure manifestations of these traits will appear as clones of the person, capable solely of displaying that particular emotion, and the leftover will be unable to display any of the severed emotions.  Only Elazul has been struck with the spell and reclaimed his "selves."

Created Forbidden Spells

Black Night:  the Sun spell.  Blankets an area in permanent darkness that cannot be lifted under any circumstance except from the Goddess Herself.  Lorimar is plagued by this spell when the Paladir family banished it to eternal night.  As such, the temperatures drop and nothing will grow.
Diamond Husk:  the Ice spell.  Similar to Immolation in that it freezes the very soul.  However, where Immolation will completely erase the soul through its fires, Diamond Husk will permanently fix the soul where the body once stood, ensuring that only the end of existence and time itself can let that soul move on.  Though by then, what is there to move on to?
Indignation:  the Lightning spell.  When struck with the dangerous bolt, the target is immediately thrown into a terrible fit of convulsions as the target's body and soul are put through an endless torture that the body can never numb itself to.  The target will not die, either, prolonging its suffering indefinitely.  It's agony of the worst kind, and Cirius is a master of the spell and also the only one outside the Goddess Herself that can cure someone from it.
Rose Princess:  the Sand spell.  Embeds a sand rose in the target's mind that will spread to anyone the target touches, and in turn whomever they touch, theoretically ad infinitum.  Impossible to detect, it puts powerful thoughts of suicide or rage in the person, depending on how passive or aggressive they are.  Dangerous in its ability to completely annihilate any city without drawing attention to the caster since no target will be aware they have anything at all in them.
Hand of Fate:  the Heaven spell.  Generates a beam that, when touched by anyone, will immediately cease their lives and force their souls to skip the cleansing/waiting in the Underworld, sending them immediately to Heaven or Hell, whichever they were destined to go to as of that moment in their lives.  Joshua is capable of this spell.
Demon Deathcase: the Death spell.  Forces the target to live in his own Hell for just one minute, though weeks, possibly years will go by to the target's perception.  Most Necromancers know this spell.
Vacuum Imploder:  the Gravity spell.  Generates a giant implosive field that pulls everything, caster and targets and immediate area, into its point of singularity.  It is not known if the radius of the field can be controlled, though Cirius doesn't believe so.  Each cast of it rips roughly five square kilometers, up and down included, apart from the world.  Depleted 15% of the world's oceans once after a miscast placed it in the ocean.
Desertification:  the Life spell, the most powerful of the created spells.  Sends out a fanning wave that immediately rips all mana from anything in contact with it, turning everything to dust.  Only Yggdrasil or the Mana Tree can withstand it and nullify it, for they have infinite mana and thus overload the spell.  It's random and cannot distinguish hostile or friendly targets, and it cannot be controlled once manifested, appearing in random locations around the immediate area and spreading outward in random directions.  When cast, Dryxad has immediately appeared to stop it in all cases, but it's rumored that without Yggdrasil or the Mana Tree, Desertification could go on endlessly and, through the destruction of Fa'Diel itself, could be sent all over the universe.  Desertification is powerful enough even to turn the Angels themselves into dust, and has actually been used against the Angel of Death.

Reference: JEM (Pre-Crisis)

Set place between Generations 5 and 6, not actual "Heroes of Mana" themselves, their goal was different.  JEM stands for Jumi Elite Militiamen, and refers to the fact that Jumi all bear semblance to gemstones and in fact evolved from minerals of some sort.  Of the Jumi military, these were the elite of the elite, and only sixteen were active at any given time.  This group in particular was quite exceptional, not just in power, but in their effects on the world.  They remained active for one century, disbanding and choosing to let their lives end (as Jumi do when they feel they have served their purpose) when they became the cause of a terrible cataclysm involving Lazale, son of Elazul.  They come in groups of fair with two male/female pairs in each group, and they pair off as Guardian/Knight within their own group as well.

Group One
Members:  Xander (leader, unpartnered), Pearl (unpartnered), Perry (Guardian to Florina), Florina (Knight to Perry)
Mentor:  Elazul Lazuli
Info:  The most powerful of the four, and the last group surviving from the previous generation.  Any one of them alone was more than a match for the combined efforts of the other three group, and these four are likened to gods themselves because not only are they individually powerful, but against any enemy or enemies, their skills complement each other in an almost too-good-to-be-true way, as if the Goddess Herself formed the group.  Combined with their experience of having been part of the previous generation, the toughest missions go to this group.

Xander
Gemstone: Alexandrite
Elements:  Heaven and Hell
Weapon style:  Sword & Shield
Info:  Xander, being an Alexandrite, had two distinct personalities, and each one took a corresponding element.  He was awful predictable in this sense, that his Heaven side was more mellow and kind while the Hell side was more aggressive and dark.  He is the leader of the group, and he believed only in his own power, having no faith in the rest of his partners.  So much so, in fact, that he refused to let any of them actually participate in the missions they were sent on, forcing them and even their mentor to stay behind at some campsite while he singlehandedly finished the mission.  Feared by all, and believed to be uncontrollable, he wasn't always an angry, judgmental person.  Before he ever joined JEM, because of his power and kindness, he was next in line to be the Clarius.  Now, however, he cares only for himself, and he has no qualms with letting the others be sacrificed should they get between him and his enemy and his power.  He stays exclusively in his Hell form.  Because of his unique elements (the second Jumi in all of history to be aligned with these almost mystical subelements), he is considered the first and last Heaven and Hell Knight (both at once) since five hundred thousand years ago, when the two were thought to be extinct.  He even knows their trademark spells and fighting styles.  He is the oldest of the group, ten years Perry's (the second oldest) senior, though as it is with Jumi, he's chosen not to age past a physical appearance of about twenty-two.  He is believed to be the most powerful Jumi, even excelling Lady Blackpearl in his much shorter life.  He is the only Jumi capable of flight, as well, which comes naturally to a Heaven or Hell Knight.

Pearl
Gemstone:  Pearl
Element:  Gravity
Weapon:  War Hammer
Info:  Pearl was saved by Xander as a child which prompted her to join the military and learn to fight that she might join his ranks.  She got her wish, though Xander refuses to acknowledge her, and she uses that to push herself further.  Unfortunately, this makes her come off as a lovetorn floozy, her eyes more on Xander's acknowledgement than actually doing what's right, and she takes a similar haughty attitude that both Lady Blackpearl and Xander give.  Once she joined JEM, she was trained by Lady Blackpearl herself.  Pearl, however, lacks confidence (again, going back to Xander), and is easily frustrated and irritable as she isn't allowed to prove herself to Xander because Xander won't let anyone work alongside him during missions.  What she doesn't realize, however, and neither has anyone else, is that her power has already skyrocketed well beyond Xander's, and it is in fact Pearl who is the most powerful Jumi.  She is basically a modern version of Lady Blackpearl, only Pearl can perform magic which Blackpearl could not, and given her element of choice, what Xander can do to any one individual, Pearl can in fact do over a very large area.

Perry
Gemstone:  Peridot
Element:  Life
Weapon:  Puppets
Info:  Perry is Xander's much younger cousin, and in fact the youngest in the group.  He's not a very talented fighter, in fact he has no skill at all with any weapon, but his puppetmastery is second to none, having more than perfected the late Gideon's abilities.  He is capable of controlling ten thousand puppets at once without any strain for days on end, and, if he is willing to hurt himself, he can control up to one million for an hour.  Like most puppeteers, he hides his real body in the shadows, and the walking/talking Perry is in fact one of his own puppets, his voice thrown in via ventriloquism.  Perry, seeing that Xander and Pearl treated each other the way they did, immediately became the Guardian to Florina.  Unlike Pearl, he's not concerned with Xander's refusing them to fight alongside him.  In fact, he prefers reading and playing chess, and he typically has his head in the clouds as he daydreams endlessly.  He is a genius, however, a real strategist for the team, and either that or his blood-relation with Xander will occasionally make the senior ask his advice should a mission appear more complicated than "blow everything up."  Perry's strategies have never failed, and he rarely needs time to come up with them, exceptionally adept at spatial thinking and reasoning.

Florina
Gemstone:  Fluorite
Element:  Moon
Weapon:  Flute
Info:  Like Perry, Florina isn't concerned with fighting.  A very carefree spirit, she prefers song and dance to anything violent.  However, as a member of JEM, she is certainly something to be feared; a master of illusions, buffing spells, and debuffing spells, she's very quick to weaken any enemy to near infantile power while giving her own team the power of gods, and she's even been able to trap Masters Akura and Elazul in illusions that only she could dispel (where Aki and Elazul are well-known to be so resistant to mental attacks that they're considered immune); she learned from Aki herself.  She is Perry's Knight, and is oddly affectionate of the dreamer probably because she is one herself.  And even though most other Jumi shy away from Pearl and Xander given their personalities, Florina is quite loyal to them and considers them her friends, even if Xander has never spoken to her directly.

Group Two
Members:  Rubis (self-proclaimed leader, Knight to Turlis), Turlis (Guardian to Rubis), Affix (Knight to Olga), Olga (Guardian to Affix)
Mentor:  Lady Tempest
Info:  The "endless youthful versatile brigaide that can overcome any obstacle with grace and determination," an overly long title that nobody cares for except for Rubis and Turlis themselves, they are indeed at least considered the most versatile group given that they are composed of equal parts weaponplay and sorcery and are host to the four primary elements of Earth, Wind, Water, and Fire.  In raw power, however, they are probably the weakest of the four groups, though they are certainly fearsome, and of all the groups, their teamwork is the best bar none.  In fact, their teamwork allows them to accomplish greater feats their "more powerful" friends can't always accomplish.  They act more like a family and are very close, though it certainly took them some time to reach that point given their personalities, and their tightness perhaps serves as a role model to future JEM applicants.

Rubis
Gemstone:  Ruby
Element:  Fire
Weapon:  Fists and Feet, supplemented by specially designed boots and gauntlets
Info:  The self-proclaimed "Red Beast of Etansel" and self-proclaimed leader of his group, he is a wild boy to the very core and believes eternally in the "springtime of youth," which has made him stop aging himself at around seventeen years in appearance.  He is the twin brother of Turlis who is just as hotheaded as he.  He loves getting into fights he shouldn't be in, and he is almost too protective of his friends which has sometimes nearly cost him his life in heavier battles.  Originally, he was considered too weird with his endless supply of red jumpsuits (his only attire) that was as red as his giant mane of spiked hair and bright red eyes.  He considers himself the personal guardian of Etansel, and can be seen frequently running along at high speeds.  Actually using his fire element to boost his speed, he is perhaps the fastest of all the JEM, and his reaction is easily the highest.  He is a proud martial artist, an expert in numerous styles and is more than capable of mixing them all and changing his stance at any moment's notice.

Turlis
Gemstone:  Turquoise
Element:  Water
Weapon:  Staff
Info:  The self-proclaimed "Blue Devil of Etansel," he is just as wild as his twin Rubis, though in a different way.  Where Rubis is more hotheaded, Turlis is "too romantic," going into poetic diatribes when they're unwanted (which is always), and trying far too hard to flirt with every female he sees.  He's even passed a few kind words to Lady Blackpearl and even the Clarius herself, and given how frequently he is seen flirting with women, he is almost always seen with a blue rose in his mouth.  Just as Rubis is red, Turlis is everything blue.  He wears a blue suit, a blue tie, his hair is blue and geld ever so perfectly, and even in battle he has a blue jumpsuit to match Rubis's.  He is a mage, staying in the background to cover Rubis's assaults so as not to mussle his hair, his abilities with water extend so far as to even create massive tsunamis in the Duma Desert, and, if pressured, he is even capable of pulling all the moisture out of his target, rendering them a pile of dehydrated dust.  He hates to kill, though, much preferring one of the others delivers the final blow, but he certainly has no qualms with weakening any enemy.

Affix
Gemstone:  Sapphire
Element:  Earth
Weapon:  2-Handed Broadsword
Info:  Affix is a fighter through-and-through, and a real tomboy and toughie.  In fact, when she and Rubis first met, they immediately got into a brawl, and they proceeded to brawl almost every day.  She's a heavy drinker, too, and if she's not fighting, she's at the local bar, probably going to cause a fight very soon.  Her weapon of choice is most peculiar; she has a fairly average frame (though her body is more solid than it appears), but her broadsword is roughly twice her size and too heavy for her to actually life.  She drags it around, having dulled the blade, and she uses it more as a blunt weapon.  She uses her element, however, to compensate:  making pillars of earth push up her sword for her, she creates various changes in the immediate area surrounding her from the ground that allow her to manipulate her blade freely.  Let the earth do the work for her, she figures.  And true enough, she's never had to strain to carry her blade.  Their mentor, Lady Tempest, uses the same fighting style, and in fact was from whom Affix learned, the Jumi quite fascinated by a smallish woman wielding a blade much too large for her.  In battle, like Rubis, Affix is quick to rush in, pummeling everything in sight with her blade, but make no mistake; although she's good at using the earth to propel her blade along, she's just as talented in using it to push her blade back and defend herself.  Rarely has Affix ever taken a beating.

Olga
Gemstone:  Opal
Element:  Wind
Weapon:  Boomerangs, Chakrams, Shurikens, anything throwable
Info:  A bookworm of a bookworm, having taken a liking to Erid, Elazul's oldest son, she always has her nose in a book and is always learning something.  She's fairly quiet and softspoken, and it's nearly impossible for the others to gauge her mood without going into her Core directly.  This frequently leads to Rubis and Turlis speaking for her, usually as a prank, which leads brawls with Affix.  When she does speak, it's usually in one or two word responses to questions.  When she's not with her group, she's studying in the library with Erid, or she's lying in the gardens reading.  In battle, though, she's an accomplished multitasker, able to send every weapon she has (which is a lot) out through wind manipulation and give them all very discrete, individual, and prioritized tasks.  Most multi-weapon users just send all weapons on the same path, but she's able to manipulate up to fifty or so individually.  Her wind magic is also impressive, as she can create multiple cyclones within one another that rotate in different directions, allowing for impenetrable shields and easy nullifying of spells.  She's probably the most magically inclined of JEM, and it all starts with those books of hers.

Group Three
Members:  Marina (leader and Knight to Taz), Taz (Guardian to Marina), Amy (Knight to Harold), and Harold (Guardian to Amy).
Mentor:  Akura "Aki" Ross
Info:  Considered "The Impenetrable," all four members have some ability or abilities that perfect their defenses, and they are the first to be summoned for any defensive missions.  Unfortunately, their teamwork is a little off.  Harold is a bully to Taz, which upsets Marina, and Amy doesn't seem to care.  When they get sent on missions, they tend to split into three directions, all going their own way except Taz who goes with Marina, and they all seem to have their own idea about how to get the mission done.

Marina
Gemstone:  Aquamarine
Element:  Ice
Weapon:  Rapier
Info:  Although Jumi are considered to be "perfect" in physical beauty, Marina's is so far up there she's likened to a goddess of beauty.  It doesn't help that her personality matches as well.  And to top it all off, she studied under Elazul Lazuli himself in fencing, and she is easily the best of the swordsmen (and women) of all the Jumi, JEM or otherwise, second only to Elazul himself.  She sees the good in everyone, including the local terror/bully Harold, and as such is Taz's only true friend and has been his friend since they were children.  It was no surprise, then, that these childhood friends became Knight and Guardian.  Along with her unrivaled swordplay, she is a very excellent manipulator of her favorite element, ice, and mix all of her talents, her beauty, and her personality, not only was she made leader of the group by Aki, because of Xander's hostile nature, she is now next in line to be Clarius.  There isn't a single person who dislikes her, and when she isn't dealing with JEM related issues, she can be seen playing with children in the park or tending to her family's gardens.  Unlike other Tier Two Jumi, because of her nature, she is quite wealthy, wealth that she passes on to her family, and they enjoy a luxurious life at the top of Etansel.  If she becomes Clarius, she will be the first Tier Two Jumi in all of Fa'Diel history to be such.

Taz
Gemstone:  Topaz
Element:  Metal
Weapon:  None, though he supports two shielded gauntlets and carries a very large shield on his back.
Info:  Unfortunately, not all Jumi are perfect.  Taz is the "ugly" Jumi, a boy with a lazy eye, a slouch in posture that makes him appear almost hunchbacked, his tone makes him appear dimwitted, and his legs are uneven, giving him a limp.  In fact, his limp is so severe that he physically and athletically cannot keep up with any other Jumi.  His physical appearance made him the target of bullying throughout his life, and only Marina ever showed him kindness.  As a result, he has vowed his life to hers, and although he tried to learn how to fight to one day protect her, his body refused.  So instead, he learned the arts of the Defender Knight, and his determination and desire were so powerful that he became an almost impenetrable shield (which also helped deter his bullies).  In fact, it was his so strong defensive spells that were one of the only reasons he was even considered for JEM.  The other reason was that Marina, then heavily sought after by JEM, refused to join if Taz couldn't be her Guardian.  He is inseparable from her, and they have worked together long enough that they don't even need to speak for him to support her properly.  Unfortunately, he is still the target of bullying, but since he still has Marina, and now that he's capable of defending himself, he doesn't mind so much anymore.  Still, he has confidence issues, which is very rare for a Jumi, and he lives a very poor, impoverished life given that Topazes, like Lapis Lazulis, are considered "the bottom of the bottom" in Jumi gemstone hierarchy.  He keeps this a secret from Marina and everyone else.

Amy
Gemstone:  Amethyst
Element:  Thunder
Weapon:  Bow
Info:  Amy is one of the most "humanized" of the Jumi in JEM in that her personality makes people forget sometimes she's a Jumi at all, only remembering since she has her Core.  With the help of the Clarius, she even, like Elazul, reduced her Core to act as a mere pendant on a necklace chain instead of the large, gaping orb in the center of the chest.  Although she is an archer, she specializes more in support than assault, and she is frequently the creator of massive cage-like electrical bolts from her arrows that offer her and her team protection.  As a thunder practitioner, however, she is quite skilled in manipulating it to make her arrows travel as fast as lightning, ensuring no enemy can dodge them.  She's a gambler, though, and has no problems running off for the nearest casinos.  She's also a heavy drinker, actually a close friend of Affix's, and the two are frequently seen in the bars together when she's not gambling.

Harold
Gemstone:  Emerald
Element:  Sand
Weapon:  None
Info:  Harold is the "neighborhood bully"; a very large, powerful looking Jumi (as most Emerald Jumi are) who delights in torture and mindbreaking.  Easily the strongest of all JEM in musclepower combined with his deadly manipulation of sand make certain that nobody is willing to stand up against him.  Except for Marina, who, though able to see the light in anyone, has no fear to Harold and can frequently be seen shunning him.  He doesn't counter, though, either out of some respect for her or merely because she was made leader of their four-man cell.  In spite of his bullying nature, he is actually an animal enthusiast, particularly the smaller, defenseless ones (such as Rabites), and he has shown loyalty to Etansel (a bit of a necessity to be a part of JEM).  Not much else is known about him, though he seems to have favorited picking on the poor Taz for his appearance, his "uselessness," and how attached he is to Marina.

Team Four
Members:  Damod (leader, Knight to Adam), Adam (Guardian to Damod), Celes (Knight to Garnet), Garnet (Guardian to Celes)
Mentor:  Kaburi/Noah
Info:  The last of the groups, and the most hated because of Adam, this group really can't get along with itself.  The girls swoon over Damod, Adam hates everyone, and Damod, though polite, seems awful apathetic to the JEM cause.  Not only that, but their mentor, Kaburi, or Noah, is a drunken pervert who shows no real indication that he wants to seriously guide the four to be anything great.  They are frequently under the target of Group One, even though Kaburi is Elazul's master and a demi-god, whom they were originally supposed to replace should Group One ever fall given their overall power.  Indeed, if not for lack of cooperation, they are the most powerful of the three new groups to JEM.

Damod
Gemstone:  Diamond
Element:  Dark
Weapon:  Scythe
Info:  The most polite of them all, he and Xander rival one another for the girls' affections.  Though whereas Xander is cold, Damod is warm to the others, and he has no qualms at all with openly dating women of any race or closeness to him.  Still, he seems oddly unattached to anything at all, coming off as one who is simply going through the motions of life, never complaining, and always smiling.  He is exceptionally skilled in battle, however, acting as a true stereotype of an "assassin," and he has no problems with putting himself in danger to protect the rest of his friends.  Well, except Adam.  He was only made leader, however, from a random picking from their mentor Kaburi, who actually changed his mind fairly frequently before settling back on Damod.  His politeness has put him pretty high with Marina, whose sincerity rivals his niceness, and the two are actually good friends because of it, having been so since before they joined the military, let alone JEM.  He even treats Taz with friendliness, and the three are seen together after missions fairly frequently just talking about this or that.  As a Tier One Jumi, he was originally in line after Xander for the title of Clarius, but his detachment and lack of interest quickly pushed the decision over to Marina, a decision he actually openly supports and encourages her to accept.

Celes
Gemstone:  Celestite
Element:  Light
Weapon:  Spear
Info:  Celes is perhaps the most girly in JEM, spending a great deal of time looking pretty for her various dates with Damod when he accepts, and she acts awful attached to him.  She would rather go shopping than fight, and she loves to gossip about the other Jumi and is quick to get emotional.  However, there is no mistake in her power--as a spear wielder, she is considered second only to Marina in actual skill, and she is fiercely competitive with her fellow JEM (even if Marina doesn't return it).  She keeps herself very busy with anything, even if she has to train, just because she doesn't like to sit still, fearful it might make her become lazy and thus "not pretty," either in battle or looks.  She isn't a frequent magic user, and her spells are never spectacular, but she's more than shown herself to be extremely adept with light spells, even so powerful as to flash incinerate a small area (not a feat easily done.  Flash incineration even requires Aki to manipulate at least ten thousand handsigns to cover a "decent" area), though not without a good deal of strain.  She is close to Garnet.

Garnet
Gemstone:  Garnet
Element:  Sun
Weapon:  Bo Staff
Info:  Close friend to Celes, she is similar in attitude, though lacking the fiery spirit of Celes.  And being around Marina and Celes who certainly outshine her in looks, she spends more of her time honing her fighting skills and studying the other groups than flirting or prettying herself up.  Most of her training time is spent with the other girls in JEM, and she shows a slight aversion to boys for currently unknown reasons; she's not afraid of them or disgusted with them in a way that might indicate something traumatic earlier in her life, no, she just prefers the female company.  She's one of the few Guardians to prefer the frontlines in battle, typically gluing herself to Celes so Celes doesn't "ruin her makeup" or whatever Celes might whine about, not at all afraid to get down and dirty herself, nor judgmental on Celes's overtly feminine nature.

Adam
Stone:  Adamantite (not a gemstone)
Element:  None (forced into Wood by Kaburi who noted "everyone do everything but you and wood.  So you do wood!)
Weapon:  None (forced into axes by Kaburi who noted "everyone do everything but axes.  So you do axes!)
Info:  A mistake, no doubt.  Nobody knows how he got into JEM:  he can't do anything; he can't fight or cast magic.  He's not very intelligent, either, and he's extremely headstrong and brash, jumping into situations he can't deal with at all, insulting the other party members for their "stupid" fascination with Damod, his clear jealousy toward the others and willingness to make Celes and Garnet fight between themselves in spite of how close they really are--he's generally just a jerk.  And he gets picked on for his uselessness, too, and in spite of that, he has the nerve to even pick on Taz, who at least can do things for himself.  Adam was never part of the military, so his sudden acceptance into JEM without passing any tests at all has more than angered the other Jumi, and even Marina in all her kindness occasionally loses her temper with him.  It was thought he had some hidden special talent within him, but even in the most desperate of times, Adam has proven himself time and time again that he's incapable of doing anything at all for himself or for others.  Harold, brash as he is, even went so far as to point an angry finger and curse the Clarius herself over this "atrocity."  Nobody even knows where Adam lives or if he even has a home, as he's seen just wandering Etansel at night.  Heck, a few weeks before the initiation of the new JEM members, nobody even knew Adam existed.  Unfortunately, Adam is not a "true" Jumi in that his Core is not a gemstone but a typical mineral.  The Clarius's son, also named Adam, was known for this as well, but that Adam was a well-respected Jumi who earned his place among the Jumi in spite of his Core's shortcomings.  This Adam just gives everyone a migraine.

Reference: Heroes of Mana - Generation Two

Oldwyne:  an Onion Knight who was known primarily for his spherical vision that could see for miles on end.  He was rumored in life to, under intense strain and prior heavy meditation, be able to see the world and view into the darkest corners of the farthest and deepest caverns (though obviously he couldn't do all this at once since he has to focus on a point like any other person).  He was a true master swordsman, having copied Elazul's variation of the Jumi Sword Dance, modified it, and improved it heavily.  Outside of Elazul, there was nobody who could compete with him in swordplay.  He valued speed and swiftness above all else, and as a result generally lacked power--he would later lament his weakness by being completely useless against the Mana God Beasts, unable to penetrate their thick, armored hides.

Like all Onion Men, he could produce multiple limbs and regrow, only because of his own power, he could regrow limbs near-instantaneously, and he's one of the VERY few Onion Men who could regrow his own head and any vital organ.  He also possessed a third eye that allowed him to see into the minds and hearts of others, and, unfortunately, he became a jaded individual.  Distraught by those who sought to only use the Goddess for power (Onion Men follow the Goddess absolutely and consider Her their mother, developing the appropriate affection even), he would eventually abandon the group when it came to wield the Mana Sword.  He would later return, though, at the beckoning of the Goddess Herself, and he would sacrifice his life to protect Elazul and Nunuzac.  In death, he was granted the title of a Wisdom, and he was appointed gatekeeper of the Underworld.

Elazul would later forge an oath with Oldwyne, allowing the Jumi to use him as a summonable ally.  The Underworld is where he currently resides, dead, but still very much alive.

Nunuzac:  considered the most powerful conjurer on Fa'Diel, Nunuzac surprisingly had no interest in his main skill.  His preference was instead curses and anti-curses, and he frequently theorized what it would mean to curse the Goddess (Elazul would ultimately later do this very feat, basing the skill of his ability entirely on Nunuzac's research), or really any immortal, and he frequently drafted up ideas that turned into magical paradoxes.  His most well-known feat was destroying the curse of the Beetle Armor, the most powerful armor ever forged that granted its wearer invulnerability to any harm or illness, but once the wearer took it off, the wearer became nothing more than a beetle--all magic and physical power lost--and just as easily squashed.  Nunuzac was able to don the armor himself and then take it off and retain his normal form.

Unfortunately, his curiosity got the better of him, and, in a freak accident that occurred during an experiment he and Paladir were trying to perform, his body was switched with that of a mere throw rug.  He retained his ability to move, think, and speak, but it was as limited as the rug could ripple about.  In spite of this, he was able to, with absolutely no magical power at all in that rug, craft the ability to teleport to any location he had memory of, another testament to his prowess.

Though no longer able to use magic other than teleporting (and only himself), he would still prove a valuable asset to the other heroes.  Nunuzac has a clarity in teaching one, anyone, no matter how dimwitted or inexperienced, to use very powerful magics that should have been impossible in their own right.  And so during the final battle against the Goddess's avatar, it was his guidance that led everyone to victory as he shouted commands left and right.  If nothing else, Nunuzac is also certainly an accomplished tactician and more than mastered the art of war on theoretical, strategic, and tactical standpoints.

Nunuzac currently is a professor at the Geo Academy, a small school that tries to teach underprivileged students the ways of magic.  His lessons are on curses and conjurations.

Demitri Paladir:  known simply as "Paladir," his name's legacy is truly a marvel.  The Paladir family is well-known as the creator of magic, the creators of all magical styles, and the pioneers of all magical research.  Everything known about magic has come from the Paladirs.  Demitri, hereafter Paladir, fathered Necromancy.  One would expect this would make him a fairly dark, morbid individual.

On the contrary, Paladir was a connoisseur of the arts, romanticism, and a real social, charismatic man.  He was quite the charmer, too, a trait he would pass on to his finest student Cirius Morlock.  Rather than being gloomy in a dark corner, Paladir fancied himself ballroom dancing, took up fencing (of which he was exceptionally skilled at), and almost always had a woman or two on his arm or arms.  He was charitable, too, and he happily took on any student strange enough to want to learn the art of the dead.  Unfortunately, for all his nobility (of which there was a lot), and all his intellect (of which there was a lot), he was strangely naive, and he was forced to kill most of his own students who turned out to be the evil sort once they had gone on their way.

When the world was in danger, it was actually Paladir who jumped at the chance of bringing about peace, and he was the one who united all the heroes.  He also frequently acted as mediator, since not everyone was willing to get along at first.

Generous and playful though he was, he was a fierce warrior.  Though merely a fencer, because of his heritage and the magical secrets he no doubt knew, he was capable of splitting spells in half with only his blade (a feat nobody could do beforehand, not even Elazul, who in fact learned the skill from Paladir), and singlehandedly he brought down five of the nine Mana God Beasts, and he played a significant role in the felling of two others.  He never underestimated his foe, and in fact Elazul held him with high regard, saying the secret to Paladir's strength was Paladir's infinitely assuming that he was always weaker, dumber, or slower than his foe, even when the discrepancies in skill were glaringly obvious.

Paladir also has the unique title of being the only one to have ever bested Elazul in a mock duel, though it was by no means an easy feat.

However, during the final battle against the Goddess's avatar, something inside of Paladir snapped.  In one mere instant, everything he ever was vanished, and in his stead was a crazed, paranoid madman who no longer desired the company of others.

Paladir is currently missing, and it's unknown whether he's even alive or not.

Evelyn:  a curious sort, half-Elf, half-Mermaid, and the only female of the group.  She was a master of Undine magics (water-elemental), and peculiarly never used an ice spell once in her life.  She was looked upon by the others as a wildfire, really temperamental, and frequently berated the others with abusive language.  Considering the calmed nature of most water users, she definitely puzzled the other men.  Well, except Paladir, with whom she had a brief tryst with.

In spite of how frequently she abused and berated the others, particularly Elazul who didn't speak much and thus was always "easy pickings," she was fiercely loyal, and this actually gave the group of heroes numerous problems.  They found it hard to hold title of "noble men and women" when Evelyn was frequently chasing after others and nearly drowning them for so much as scoffing at some of their members, among other things, all of which were only barely stopped at the last minute by one of the other men.

Still, she was a valuable member, and because she had no physical prowess, she was frequently under the protection of the others while she stayed back and used her water magic.  She was powerful enough that she could summon a mighty tidal storm in the middle of the desert, but she was largely unfocused (usually because of her anger), and every now and then one of her allies was caught up in one of her spells.  Sometimes, though, it was just assumed she did it on purpose.

She would be the one to land the final blow on the Goddess's avatar, however.  Nunuzac was able to get her to manipulate the infinite mana of Yggdrasil to amplify her power, and the end result was that she quite literally drowned the entire realm.  She died in the process, though, but was reborn as Seraph, the Angel of Love, which she currently holds the title of and enjoys immortality.

Elazul was the only one not surprised by this turn of events.  Ever the "mind reader," Elazul's description of her about the rest of them was quite impacting:  "Nobody ever cared for us the way she did.  Not your family, not your friends; her love was infinite.  And she was never afraid to show it--you were just afraid to see it."

Indeed, Evelyn, in spite of everything she put them through, not once did she ever stutter in her stance with all of them, and once everyone got to thinking about it, she really was the glue that held them all together.

Elazul:  the final member, the oldest member, one of the first Jumi ever created, Elazul earned the nickname "The Wandering Duelist" by virtue of being considered one of the greatest fighters in all of history and a complete refusal to stay in one spot.  Much of his history will be ignored for the purposes of this post.

Elazul was the last to be recruited, and he was very reluctant to do so for reasons that to this day still remain a mystery.  He was perhaps not only the most skilled of all of them but also the most fortunate; he was trained by a demigod of combat in every known style that was and ever will be, both physical and magical.  There is quite literally nothing Elazul doesn't know, and his age and experience has allowed him to be nothing short of invincible.  Still, his weaknesses lie in the fact that his actual physical and magical prowess are nothing spectacular--many fighters out there are stronger than he is, faster than he is, or capable of greater spells than he is.

He was the quietest of the group, only speaking when something needed to be said, and he was the most tolerant of everyone, particularly of Evelyn's verbal abuses and Oldwyne's jaded attitude.  He wasn't the most liked because of his tendencies toward isolationism, but nobody ever felt more secure in their surviving some battle than when he stood there right next to him, and for good reason.

Elazul is well known to carry with him two blades.  One is an obscenely giant sword--Evelyn frequently joked that he was overcompensating, that is until Elazul just decided to show her how wrong she was--which Elazul uses all the time.  The other, less noticed (the party wasn't even aware of it until the battle against Zable Fahr, Mana God Beast of Darkness, and the last to be slain) is a small scimitar, which Elazul actually declares is his "primary" weapon, apparently not fully understanding what "primary" means.  Elazul keeps this blade at his side at all times, and he only ever draws it when a battle becomes much too serious, and he knows that if he doesn't start putting 100% of his ability in, someone could very well die.

Elazul only uses one fighting style when wielding his scimitar, however, and that is the fighting style of the Jumi, which is dangerous and was banned because the style literally kills the practitioner.  His master taught him to use it with only "serious but nonfatal" damage done to his body and Core, and it's his guarantee of victory.  After the battle against Zable Fahr, Elazul was actually incapacitated for three weeks while he recovered (a Jumi of his age can generally recover even the most serious of wounds in only two or three days).

Against the Goddess's avatar, Elazul had to wield his scimitar a second time, though at least then he was only trying to buy Evelyn and Nunuzac some time, so he didn't over-exert himself, and he was only incapacitated for one full day after.

Elazul, as described by Paladir, was the "flawed sage."  That is, whenever Elazul spoke, he was always correct, and there was great wisdom in everything he said.  However, the group was largely disorganized and bickering, so nobody paid him much attention.  This was made moreso by the fact that Elazul isn't one to speak above others--if someone wants to hear him, they will, and if not, they won't, and they'll have missed their chance.

He was also surprisingly fatherly, or he seemed to come off that way to others.  During regular training sessions, he was always there to carefully guide others to perfection, and he had such a striking knowledge of all things that he was perhaps the only reason the group ever became powerful enough to actually defeat the Goddess's avatar, in spite of everyone else's strengths.

Only Paladir was considered his "superior" when it came to fighting and magic, and even though he didn't use his scimitar in the mock duel against Paladir, he acknowledges that even if he had, not only would Paladir have won but the battle might have become so intense that Elazul might have died accidentally.

He currently now wanders with the new group, only with the times having changed, he is perhaps not the most powerful one anymore...

Reference: Jumi Cores

Where Humans and Humanoids need their heart and brain to live (and most of them lungs or gills or some other breathing mechanism), Jumi need only their Cores, large, globular, solidified mana that bears striking resemblances in both color and crystalline structure to various gemstones.

The Cores are exceptionally delicate, and many describe them as flimsy and frail as tissue paper.  In the early days of Jumi history, Jumi were well known to become very ill when winds became too powerful.  Most fabrics can also irritate the Cores, and many can even outright scratch them; so far, the only natural fabric that consistently proves safe for Jumi is silk--otherwise, synthetics are created.  Even with safe clothing, though, if the the fabric touches the Core, there is a constant "pressure" applied to the Core that is a bit annoying, similar to a waterlogged ear for other Humanoids.  As a result, it is extremely rare for Jumi to cover their Cores at all, even in battle except with spell-based shields or the cover of their surroundings, and nobody important in Jumi history was ever known to always have his/her Core covered.

When Cores are scratched, although they can heal, it is a very slow and painful process.  Minor scratches to the Core are the equivalent of shattering bones to others.  Deep scratches are torture, provided the Jumi even survives.  It takes no effort to harm a Core.

In return for how delicate these are, Cores offer Jumi a plethora of abilities.  The foremost and most common is Jumi Recognition.  Cores can detect Jumi from a particular radius (that changes depending on the Jumi using it.  The Clarius is capable of locating Jumi the world over, and more powerful Jumi like Lady Blackpearl can extend over an entire continent if s/he is at the center) and tell the sender who the Jumi are, where they are, and provide a very detailed history that implants instantaneously, allowing the Jumi to act as if s/he has known the unknown Jumi his/her entire life.

Another feature of this is Life-Syncing.  It is well known in philosophy that nobody can truly understand another, that even getting into someone's head, one makes mistakes by simply having a different appearance, a different background, etc. than the other.  For Jumi, however, "true understanding" is not only possible, it's fairly common.  Two consenting Jumi can synchronize their Cores such that they understand each other perfectly--they "create" a "second history" for themselves, as if they had been the other, had looked like the other, had lived as the other had, and had made the same decisions with the same justifications the other had.  However, this must be consensual--even the Clarius cannot forcibly understand another Jumi.

Telepathy is also a feature of the Cores, and actually, the Jumi only developed a spoken language to communicate with nonJumi; they much prefer to speak through their Cores.

Cores also offer healing.  Even if a Jumi is decapitated, that head will simply rot and a new one will grow.  In fact, so long as 30% of the host body remains intact, the Jumi Core will completely regrow the remaining on its own.  The more damage the body sustains, however, the longer it takes to grow, and also the more powerful the Core, the less time it takes to grow.  Jumi can be perfectly separated from their hearts and brains and still function normally, since all the "humanoid" body is is a host home for the Core, which stores all the conscious, subconscious, unconscious, and biological/informational systems.

Because of this, Jumi can also shut down many "human" systems, such as feeling pain, feeling emotion, feeling specific emotions, breathing, and the body's need to go into shock when put under incredible duress, allowing a Jumi to finish any physical task even well after the body itself shuts down.  In fact, many Jumi opt not to feel emotions or breathe at all, particularly those who work in fields where breathing in toxins might irritate their Core (since the Core is still linked to their biological organs, even if the organs are unnecessary, and while the Core can never be destroyed or rotted from, say, overexposure to methane gases, it does produce a mild irritation that, because the Core itself is affected, the Jumi cannot simply turn off).

In battle, the Cores offer all the power for Jumi.  Once the power is used up, the Core becomes "temporarily inert," and the Jumi will black out instantly or become paralyzed, depending on how much power remains.  The Core recharges entirely on its own at a logarithmic rate, though the presence of pure mana can greatly accelerate this.  Thus the more power that needs to be recharged, the faster the charge, and the less power that needs to be recharged, the slower the charge.  The Core is a multitasker, so even completely drained of power, not only will it recharge, but it will actively work to heal all wounds and recover fatigue, which slows down the recharge rate only slightly.

The Core will also divert power from one area to another as it sees fit.  So if a Jumi needs to lift a heavy boulder, the Core will divert power from any speed-allowing muscles and put them into strength-allowing muscles.  It will do so instantaneously and naturally.  Similarly, it can diver power from emotional drives and put it into physical drives, and vice versa.  As a result, an ultimately powerful Jumi can arise, dead in emotion and conscious desires.

Cores are also the source of magic for all Jumi, and thus all Jumi (except two) can use it.  Only Elazul and Lady Blackpearl were ever known to be unable to use magic (though in Lady Blackpearl's case, nobody ever knew).

There is, however, an amazing flaw with Jumi in spite of all these "rule-breaking" bonuses (no matter how delicate the Cores are, Jumi are trained first and foremost to defend their Cores before slaying their enemy) that offer nonJumi advantages.

The first is a lack of potential.  A Jumi is only as powerful as his Core and cannot pull an "act of desperation" and draw power from the world around him.  And so there is no emotion or adrenaline rush.  Only Elazul and Lady Blackpearl have been shown otherwise, though the latter is questionable because of Lady Blackpearl's sheer power, and Elazul was only capable of it because of his trainer, Noah/Kaburi.

The second is tunnel-visioning.  Many battles against Jumi have been won by finding out their objectives and creating the illusion that the objective is much more ferocious than it really is.  The Jumi Cores divert all power to accomplishing this task, and so their higher tactical abilities are greatly hindered, allowing for easy ambushes and guerilla warfare to greatly even the odds.

The third and final is a lack of growth.  Jumi can only grow in power by completely depleting their Core's energy and then resting for a maximal recharge.  But only about 2-3% of an increase is gained with each full rest.  And if anything strenuous is done to a Jumi during an attempt at "resting growth," the Core only recharges to 100%, and they must be drained again.  So when military units see a group of resting Jumi, they attack, and some of the more brilliant tactics have involved "lazy defenses/assaults," forcing the Jumi to work harder than necessary until they fall back into a retreat, whereupon the "real" assault begins.  Only Lady Blackpearl is capable of growing in power without this need for a drain/recharge, and in fact her Core grows in power each and every day.

Finally, culturally, Cores are very sacred to Jumi for all the above reasons.  As such, Jumi do not allow others to touch their Cores, and they frequently won't even touch their own.  However, one will frequently find Jumi with small bits of others' Cores, typically fashioned into jewelry (especially rings and pendants--specially made chains allow for necklaces to drape over Cores without harming them, and Cores cannot harm or irritate other Cores, and in fact many Core-on-Core contacts feel "calming" to other Jumi).  This is an act of great friendship.  Jumi will, if the person is deserving enough, go through an hour or so of misery to offer this person a piece of his/her own Core.  Relatives and very close friends are the recipients of such gifts.  It is an act of honor, and it signifies a bond between the Jumi and the recipient that cannot be easily broken--a "life contract," to most people.

However, lovers will never get such a gift.  Instead, lovers get to touch each others' Cores with their host bodies.  This allowance is an act of the highest trust, faith, and devotion a Jumi can give another.  It is extremely private and sensual, something never done where others can see.  It is the Jumi's version of "marriage," specifically the sealing of vows part of a marriage.  When a Jumi allows another to touch his/her Core (always done by guiding the other person to it, letting their hand rest on it, then letting go to let them do as they please, never lowering it to some "you have my permission"), that Jumi is saying s/he will stand by the person no matter what, even if the act is not immediately returned (it rarely is--Jumi come into these rituals on their own terms and are never pressured by either the other or by their own society/friends/family/community).

And that is, of course, because the Core represents absolute vulnerability to any Jumi.  To touch it, knowing you could destroy it by simply pressing too hard once they have removed their hands from yours, speaks entirely for itself.

Reference: Element Chart & Important Notes

Primary Elementals and Oriental Suffixes

Fire - Salamander - Ka
Water - Undine - Sui
Wind - Jinn - Fuu
Earth - Gnome - Do
Light - Wisp - Yuu
Dark - Shade - Mei
Wood - Dryad - Moku
Metal - Aura - Ko
Moon - Lumina - Getsu

Subelementals and Oriental Suffixes

Sun - Amaterasu - Hi
Ice - Celsius - Hyo
Lightning - Rai - Volt
Sand - Sutekh - Sa
Heaven - Aska - Sei
Hell - Shadow - Aku
Life - Origin - Sai
Gravity - Maxwell - Juu
Omni - Sekundes - Men

Elemental Combinations and Oriental Suffixes

Fire + Water = Boil - Fut
Fire + Wind = Scorch - Shaku
Fire + Earth = Lava - Yo
Water + Wind = Storm - Ran
Water + Earth = Mud - Dei
Wind + Earth = Dry - Kan
Dark + Light = Void - Ie

Elemental Upgrades and Oriental Suffixes

Fire + Sun = Explosion - Baku
Water + Ice = Crystal - Shou
Wind + Lightning = Sky - Kuu
Earth + Sand = Dust - Jin
Light + Heaven = Aura - Kyou
Dark + Hell = Blaze - En
Wood + Life = Restoration - Nao

-----

The Paladir family was the first to experiment with elemental configurations.  They were the first to suppose the idea that not only focused concentrations of elements existed, dubbed subelements, but that there even existed a "sub"-Elemental that, like the Elementals, acted as catalysts in magic forming, making for easier spell casting and mana manipulations.

They were also the first to combine elements to create spells that appeared to perfectly blend the two respective elements at once, forcing a "merging" of the Elementals such that a totally new class of magic was born.

They also then proceeded to try and upgrade magic by using the same logic as the above--mix two Elementals in a perfect harmony, only this time an Elemental with its subelemental.  However, at the time, the subelementals were not proven to exist, and so the specific wavelengths needed to reach them were impossible to know.  In the end, 100% of results proved disastrous.

Ultimately, it was Cirius who took their research and ideas and proved every single one of them, including the existence and the proper wavelengths of the subelementals.  He then singlehandedly pioneered the "elemental upgrade" research, done jointly with Mephianse and the Oriental Elves.

Mephianse, of course, is well-known as the master of all elements with a propensity even greater than Cirius's, though he completely lacks everywhere else.  But then, this is elemental research.

The Oriental Elves, however, much like Cirius and all Psions, are incapable of magic.  Where Cirius invented the wand that allowed for "wizardry," the Elves crafted the hand seals.  Of course, the only reason they ever were important to anything was because Cirius had produced a son with one Elf, and so he spent a great deal of time with their kind.  Fortunate, though, that Cirius did choose to do so--had the events never happened, hand signs wouldn't exist, magic would be reserved solely to those with wands and natural talents, Akura "Aki" Ross would have never taken an interest in it, he would then never have developed the "Lifetime of Handsigns" spell, and he and Tempest would not have been able to stop Lazale from destroying the entire space-time continuum (though, it was possible Adam's two students could have eventually succeeded) and erasing all of existence that ever was, is, and would be.

Current known users of Hand Signs who favor them in place of standard spellcasting, in order of expertise and mastery:

Akura
Amaryllis
Elazul
Tempest

References: The Eight High Generals

The Whisper:
One of the few women in the military and one of the most feared of all the High Generals, she is perhaps second most feared for her ruthlessness and skill. She is surprisingly blind and mute, but she can supposedly communicate to her troops subvocally, like through a radio frequency, but not exactly telepathy. They say she can hear a heartbeat from a mile away, that her body reacts instantaneously to any threatening noise from a grunt emanating from a heavy thrust to the air whisking about a blade swiping through it. And she is feared because she puts herself on the front lines, not the least bit afraid of any battle, and this in turn inspires her men with a morale unlike any of the other Generals save one.

The Whirlwind:
The calmest of the Generals, one of the many rarely seen, he is a blacksmith turned soldier early in his life. Coming from a long line of highly skilled smiths, he crafted a rapier of all things whose slices and thrusts can supposedly generate an ethereal force equivalent to a small burst of wind. Small, but deadly, they say just a few slices from ten feet away from his blade can rip the flesh right off a fully armored man. He is rarely seen on the battlefield, preferring instead to keep to his own.

The Juggernaut:
The strongest of the Generals and the largest, when he runs, no rope, arrow, pit, or wall can stop him or even slow him down. He swings a giant axe the way many swing daggers--hardly any resistance, maximal swiftness and agility, and without any loss of balance. He can supposedly cut right through stone, and his axe was forged by none other than The Whirlwind, and it has never broken or dulled. He is a true berserker--so bloodlusted that he'll kill his own men if they stand in his way. He clearly prefers the frontlines.

The Bloody:
The newest of the Generals, he is more of a shock-and-awe terrorist than true warrior. He relies more on the latest technologies to help him raze whole areas to the ground regardless of what's actually in them. He earned his name because his sword has never been cleaned, and in fact has become so foul that one cut brings certain death from the poisons coagulated--and infected--blood can bring. Not the most skilled by far, but he is the wealthiest, and he commands much of the large artilleries, perfect for total annihilation. He has no real special talents other than his name and reputation bring fear--at least the others show mercy or follow their orders wholly--he shows none and seeks only to destroy.

The Watcher:
Nothing is known of his actual skill in battle. What brings him victories in duels is his rumored 360 degree vision that allows him to see not only in all directions, but even behind objects, ultimately allowing him to see his enemies' backsides as he attacks them from the front. He is swift and agile, allowing him to expertly penetrate any vulnerabilities his perfect vision can find. His actual strength and endurance are probably no more than the average soldier's. He is never seen anymore, instead a perfect spy, somehow acquiring a cloak of invisibility that, coupled with his spherical vision, makes him all the more deadly.

The Soothsayer:
The man The Whisper is second to in gaining respect from his soldiers, his mere voice can inspire thousands of soldiers to great feats of strength, skill, endurance, and speed well beyond their own adrenaline rushes. He has no actual skill in combat on his own, relying on his men to fight for him while he ensures their flawless, absolute victories. Some say his soothsaying is so powerful that his men will follow orders even through their deaths. It was rumored he was almost as powerful as The King, and it was perhaps this very rumor that led to his ultimate but unknown demise one decade ago. Only after he died were the enemies of the Empire ever able to begin gaining footholds in assaults.

The Ghost:
The second and only other female High General, she has never actually been seen in battle in war, instead seen regularly in tournaments. To outsiders she moves fairly normally, but for some reason her opponents can never seem to anticipate her attacks. They say she's never been touched in battle, but nobody has ever figured out why her opponents can't seem to lay a finger on her, even when her stances show clear vulnerabilities and her opponents not only recognize them but have the skill to act upon them. For this, she earned her monicker.

The King:
The most feared of all the High Generals, the oldest and most powerful and most experienced. He has never lost a battle he has participated in himself, but that is not what is frightening. Rather, it is how he wins his battles: he has never once been observed lifting an arm or blade against his opponent. Instead, every opponent he has ends their own lives before him. And they do so because he commands them to, and they listen. Thought to be hypnosis, this was rejected when it was witnessed he could command a volley of arrows to stop in mid-air and return to their archers' hearts. Nobody knows where his power comes from, but rumor has it he sold his very soul to the most powerful of all Demons; anything that comes near him is subject to his absolute rule, the living, the dead, and the otherwise inanimate. He was rumored to have killed his own subordinate, The Soothsayer, when it was hypothesized that The Soothsayer's own powers could force men to break The King's rule. The royal king himself fears The King, that should he ever try and overthrow the empire and make himself ruler, there would be nobody to stop him. At least for now, The King seems not the least bit interested in actually ruling over anyone.