Lorraine: "The central focus of my stories is on character growth, believable conflicts, and social interactions: the human experience. Giving any more influence to [magic] would take the audience's attention away from character development and place it more on the technicalities of world-building. Still, the chart is available for those who want to understand the inner workings of this added story element!"
A Brief Overview Edit
Magic is the great equalizer in the Eflasiaverse. Element bending is considered a far more valuable commodity than crossbows and firearms. Such purely physical weapons, which hold limited ammunition and can be promptly deflected by expert magic users, are more likely to be favored by fighters who do not have element bending talents.
Eventually, element bending falls to the wayside as magic begins to disappear from the world and technology takes over as the force powering civilizations. This gradual shift from magic to machine, along with the switch from magic-based short range weapons to firearms powered by technology or a magic-technology blend, occurs in the centuries following the fall of Fontis.
In fifteenth-century Fontis, almost everyone has the potential to use magic. Actually putting it to practice is equal parts nature and nurture: to be considered for a main element-bending position in the Fontisian military, an individual must be able to demonstrate a natural average potential in casting magic (the ability to summon a wall of fire with available flammable resources present is average; barely being able to light a match is arcane ineptitude) as well as fluency: those with arcane potential can bend any element, but often choose to focus on one element because it takes years to bring that potential to fruition. Most parents usher their children at a young age to element-bending academies because it is a valuable commodity often connected to a secure life.High arcane potential does not necessarily mean high magic usage. An individual with great arcane potential may not have an interest or the focus to cultivate magic beyond the ability to charge a cell phone or heat up milk to make a nice cup of hot chocolate. Hey, maybe that person makes some killer hot chocolate, but in that sense those we see honing their elemental skills as careers make about 30% of Fontis's population.
There are those who cannot use magic at all, and those who are at a terrible disadvantage if they try it.
Samson, having no magic ability, grew up comfortably in the commerce of Fontis following his hard-working father's footsteps as a sheepdog until he (accidentally) joined the military as a high physical-ability knight.
Princess Eflasia's arcane potential is off the charts; as a rare case of a mortal spring (an individual being a magic source), trying to tap into that raw potential herself would tear her mind and body apart.
Ice Kingdom citizens often have magic potentials above the 130 mark because their kingdom was built around a spring, the crater of an extinct volcano. Unfortunately, such close proximity to a raw source of magic has altered their reasoning and empathy skills, so they are considered insane by the outside world. They are usually kept as pets outside their kingdom, and their magic is sealed with an enchanted collar they cannot remove by themselves.
Nyxis is probably the most favorable of arcane potential and magic usage of all these examples: she had a high talent for magic and an interest in cultivating it, resulting in notable skills that helped land her present job. She can also get a good boost of magic from Eflasia with no negative consequence to either of them.
Necromancy is a difficult magic still undergoing heavy research, and those who can summon the dead are held in high regard. It is not uncommon for necromancers to put their talents towards careers in medical, forensic, or mortuary science fields. Being able to test if they can manipulate "dead" bodies means that necromancers can detect if a body is actually dead; this has saved many from being buried alive. Specialized necromancers can also detect if certain tissues are dead, for example to help a family decide if they should euthanize a comatose loved one. Necromancy can be used in battle as well, although it's not as often utilized as other magics. The control a necromancer requires in raising more than one body is similar to a puppeteer trying to maneuver an increasing amount of strings. With little time to pick and choose, a necromancer in the flux of battle might end up raising all fallen bodies, creating confusion due to the mix of uniform color.
Zombie apocalypses are the stuff of fiction. Necromancers have much more interesting things to do than sit on a graveyard bench for months, waiting for corpses to somehow coordinate digging themselves out of coffin and ground all at the same time.