As a companion to Tuesday's post, I wanted to give a couple of examples of magic-using character concepts from the world of the City.
First though, a word about magic in general. The divide in this world is not so much cleric vs. magic-user (though, a similar divide does exist, in a fashion) but thaumaturgy vs. mysticism. Thaumaturgy is the applied science of magic, the exploitation of forces and principles as real as physics or chemistry are in our world. There are many competing models as to the "hows" and "whys" of magic, but whatever their differences, they all typically involve spells/formulae, magical aides/tools, and experimentation. Mysticism, on the other hand, is less rational and more intuitive. It relies on idiosyncratic (or even lack of) explanations. It's tools are things like meditation, physical conditioning, and/or use of drugs to create altered states of consciousness to achieve sudden insight.
With that in mind, here are two men of magic from the streets of the City:
Nightshade's got a one-room office with "Nightshade Investigations" stencilled on the door. He solves problems. Particular sorts of problems. Kinds the cops won't.
He used to be a cop himself, but that was before the War. Then he had uniform and a badge. Now he's got trouble sleeping nights--and magic. He used to think he was just lucky, but luck had nothing to do with it. The ageless man that visited him in that hospital overseas clued him in, and gave him a book--a grimoire--the first of many.
The upside of insomnia is a guy's got a lot of time to read.
Sikandar the Sorcerer