Types of Distortions:
Distortional categories are defined as subjective groupings of effects which can overlap. These groupings are the most common method of categorizing Ouroborics, though they can be validly interpreted differently (for example: amplifying strength in a person can be categorized as Type 1 or Type 2 Distortion since to gain strength, resources in the body need to be converted into glycogen for the muscles).
Another way to consider Ouroborics is defining their capabilities around their restrictions. In theory, any desire outside the restrictions is reasonably manifestable by a Distorter.
In order to manifest will, sometimes multiple Strings need to be pulled to achieve the desired effect.
1) Rand - Amplify/Weaken
Exchange: written word, symbols, runes
Description: Enhance or weaken an effect which is already happening.
If a person is shouting, amplification can make this person louder and weaken can make this person’s shout to a whisper.
Candlelight can be brightened or dimmed.
Physical strength or mental stamina can be enhanced, but this type of Distortion is limited to the resources stored in the body. The spell can convert existing cells into fuel or draw plaque away from the brain, but in doing so, will leave the Distorter thinner and overall weakened afterwards.
Hide something visibly: Let’s say a path from location A to B needs to be hidden from sight. The spell cannot erase the actual path but it can play on the observer’s senses. Other stimuli (such as the environment around the path: colour of the grasses, chirping birds, loud river) will become increasingly attention-seeking to the human eye, causing what’s truly in front of a person to become ‘invisible’.
If there exists a Distortion before a Distorter which hides a path, and the Distorter know there should be a path there, then at the appropriate location an amplify/weaken Distortion can reveal the path by either dulling irrelevant stimuli in the environment or increasing focus of the senses in the individual.
Decrease the velocity of a falling object.
2) Dorin - Change/Revert or Repair
Exchange: hand shapes, flexing certain muscles, combination of acts in a pattern, memorization, time allotted familiarity.
Description: Alter appearance but the mass of the transformation must be same or less of the original form. Length of life cannot be altered to match that of the thing you are transforming into. When reattaching flesh though reversion, the flesh must be within arm’s length proximity (what is known as the Half Span of a Distorter). Types of cells can be changed from one form to another but the overall conversion must conserve mass.
A Distorter can change themselves into an animal. Let’s say a person weighs 60kg and they decide to turn into a cat. There are two options for the transformation: Preserve mass and become a large cat weighing ~60kg (see next example regarding tissue conversion) or become a regularly sized cat and shed the extra kg. But, in the latter case, there is excess mass. That extra flesh is shed into a pile external to the autonomy (unmarred, simply rearranged to lie outside the conscious autonomy of the Distorter). Contamination is possible to the flesh during this time, so it is not recommended that Distorters ‘downsize’ their transformations. If they do, the excess flesh should be stored in a cold box to slow decomposition. Upon reverting to their original forms, a Distorter only need be within arm’s reach of the flesh to perform the Distortion to tie the body back together. If the flesh decomposes to an unrecoverable extent, the Distorter will not be able to revert back to their original form.
Types of cells inherent to the Distorter can be changed: for example, if a Distorter became a bird, their muscle cells could change into beta-keratin proteins to make up the feathers. However, since the transformation would need to preserve mass in the overall new physical form, one cell of X does not necessarily equal one cell of Y. An example of physical transformation adhering to the preservation of mass is if a Distorter (human) changed one of their fat cells into a fat cell of a seal (who’s base fat cells are slightly larger than humans’). The Distorter’s seal body’s fat cells would either take two human fat cells to make one regular seal fat cell or make a seal fat cell which is smaller. The resulting transformation would be a seal that appears underweight or a seal relatively smaller than their real-life counterparts. [For any biologists reading this, I don’t know the exact comparison of seal adipocytes to human. I am just using it as an example to explain this magic system].
Although dead or injured flesh cannot be healed, tissues can be rearranged to seal a wound with the remaining healthy tissue. For example, if a Distorter lost their arm, a seal made of skin tissue could be formed to stop the bleeding. If the Distorter wishes to reattach the arm, the arm itself must be within the Distorter’s Half Span, and only the
If a ceramic shatters, it’s constituents can be rearranged back together. The ‘fixed’ ceramic may be slightly misshapen in comparison to its former self, depending on the skill of the Distorter.
3) Voki - Summon /Banish
Exchange: [Sound, music, song, spoken word, rhyme] + previously have visited land of summoning
Description: To bring something close or further away from the Distorter. Only master Distorters are able to perform long distance Distortions of this type.
If a Distorter wishes to travel to a far away location, they can summon the land towards them through utterance of sound. This kind of Distortion temporarily folds planar reality in front of the Distorter to step through to the desired location (a location which they have visited once before).
Banishment works in a similar manner in that planar reality is compressed in front of the Distorter, so when stepping though, it leaves them stranded at some location within the compression (now uncompressed). The location of banishment is uncontrollable as the compressed reality is geographically indistinguishable. Banishment does not require the Distorter to have previously visited the location.
Summoning can also be called ‘conjuring’ (although it is reliant on an existing source of the conjured item). A Distorter can call upon a torrent of water if the source of water has been visited by the Distorter in the past. The conjuring works in the same way of land summoning in that planar reality is folded shortening the distance of travel.
4a) Iseppt - Share or Imbue/Steal or Nullify (one-time exchange)
Exchange: ingestion, chewing, swallowing ingredients
Description: Sharing one’s Ouroboric abilities with another person(s), or imbuing a Distortion in an object which permanently alters the object.
A Weave is an example of a share type Distortion. It involves a Primary Distorter offering his/her blood to be drank by other Distorters to share each other’s Ouroboric stamina and aptitude. This type of link is permanent until the death of the Primary.
Distorted objects are an example of imbuing an effect into an item. There could be a cup which is constantly thermodynamically converting cold liquids into hot liquids. After the initial exchange is made, the Distortion’s effects will remain imbued in the object eternally (unless altered by a Distortion in the future).
4b) Essept - Share or Imbue/Steal or Nullify (continuous exchange for duration of Distortion)
Exchange: Time allotted familiarity, Memorization, Pain, Discomfort (mental or physical)
Description: Sharing one’s Ouroboric abilities with another person(s) or imbuing a Distortion in an object which temporarily alters the object.
Animate an Object. For example, in chapter 1, Brona Distorts her buckets into collecting water for her while she continuously kneels in the cold creek shedding her warmth.
Freeze the movement of a dynamic object without breaking eye-contact.
5) Qa - Project
Exchange: The exchange for these types of Distortion are usually involuntary, and the results are generally uncontrollable. The exchange is a primal response; strong emotion, self-preservation, the necessity to eat, safety, sacrifice for a loved one, spilt blood, fear.
Description: Projection is a type of Distortion without a clear desire from the Distorter. An Ouroboric String will filter through a lens of the exchange to create the effect.
Blood Echos are an example of projections. A living Distorter drinks the blood of a deceased Distorter and filters will-lessly directed Ouroboric Strings through the blood. The result is a Blood Projection who has free will and cannot be controlled by their host.
Distorters (also known as: Humans, Apartenantoj)
Life span: ~10,000+ years
Humans able to pervert the world around them and manifest their will through Distortions.
The degree of strength a Distorter has with Ouroborics varies person to person. A high aptitude for Ouroborics is related to a Braided relationship of Ouroboric Strings in the blood and bones of the individual. Since the Strings are inside them, and therefore closer to them, Braided Distorters can offer less in Exchange for a String’s power.
Distorters age as Leavers do from birth to puberty, at which point Distorters age to a point and then remain as looking such for the remainder of their lives, even at death.
Although the word ‘Distorter’ can be used to identify anyone capable of Ouroborics, it is usually contextualized to mean humans who can perform Ouroborics when the word is used on its own.
Giants (also known as: Vast, Glutantoj, O’Apartenantoj)
Life span: ~10,000+ years
Human in appearance, giants stand over 200 ft tall and have a strong stamina for performing Ouroborics.
They feed themselves by growing the flora of the nearby environment (although this Distortion has its limitations: Additional food matter is summoned from around the world to make a complete giant plant. For example, if a giant were to grow an apple, ordinary apples around the world would lose some or all of their mass, which would be summoned to make-up the constituents of the giant apple).
Worga (also known as Blood Screamers, Sango Trinkanto)
Life span: Infinite.
Children of Giants bred with Distorters.
They have a blood lust, usually feeding off the blood of the giant parent until their death, at which point the Worga children become mad with hunger. They are known to attack others for their blood through biting.
They can use Ouroborics, though they have trouble controlling it.
They also have a ‘beast form’ which they can realize. The beast’s appearance is different from individual to individual. Some have been described as long canine appearing animals with eight legs and serpentine tails, some have been seen as bipedal bat-like humanoids, and so on. Often a Worga’s beast form is their ‘resting’ physicality.
They emulate death through deep sleep.
Wood Folke (also known as Arbo Homoj, Whores for Stones)
Life span: ~20,000+ years
Anywhere from 2 – 8 feet tall.
Their faces are pieces of wood with three holes carved into them: two eyes, and a mouth. Their faces are static (they cannot move), but their emotion can be heard through voice.
They live in forests, often immobile unless disturbed.
They will be more willing to help passerby’s who will give them nice looking stones.
Those who Stay (also known as: Ekvilibro Establita)
Life span: Infinite.
Those who have found the ultimate equilibrium in existence, having found the balance between one’s happiness and one’s daemons.
If marred, their blood returns to them clean and filtered of any impurities.
They do not need to eat and emulate death through deep sleep.
This race is only known through Scrier rumour, but none have been recorded historically to prove their existence.
Leavers (also known as: Humans, Foriri)
Life span: ~90 years
Those who weren’t meant to stay in the growing world. Their short life spans reflect that.
They are incapable of performing Ouroborics and are a people who are generally mocked/pitied around the world (for both their short life spans, and that they cannot perform Ouroborics).
They are phenotypically identical to Distorters.
Scriers (also known as: O’Focus, Registrilo)
Life Span: Dependent on their Focus.
People who remember the lives before the current.
They are connected to another person which they will follow through every iteration of life. They, select others, and their Focus are reborn in a seemingly never-ending cycle of lives.
Scriers always outlive their Focus and tend to find themselves reborn near their Focus in the next life.
Focus (also known as: Sekvis Amato)
Life Span: Dependent on species
A person whose past lives are recorded by a Scrier.
The Focus themselves cannot remember their past iterations.
Black Eyes (also known as: Witch Kissed, Nigraj Okuloj)
Life Span: Dependent on the primary Distorter
Individuals who have drank the heart blood of another Distorter, sharing their stamina through a Weave. The Primary Distorter can lend his/her power to their Black Eyes, and their Black Eyes to them.
The trade-off for having Black Eyes is that it may drain the Primary if there is a Black Eye who is of lesser Ouroboric stamina.
A Leaver cannot become a part of Weave.
Black Eyes are called such because upon drinking the heart blood of the Primary, their right eye becomes an entirely black orb.
Blood Projections (also known as: Sang Amikoj)
Life Span: Dependent on the Distorter.
When a Distorter drinks the blood of a deceased Distorter, they can corporealize the likeness of who that person used to be into a semi-physical form. The Blood Projection can eat and drink food, though there isn’t a physical necessity to do so. They can also go between a corporeal form and non-corporeal state at their will.
The Blood Projection can recall their past and even the events of their death (irrelevant of the extraction date of their blood). When a Blood Projection is asked about life after death, the Projection looks as though it is prevented from speaking.
The Blood Projection can perform Ouroborics, though their stamina is solely reliant on their host.
The bond between a Distorter and their Blood Projection is permanent until the death of the host, so it is imperative that a Distorter only drink another Distorter’s blood if they can bear to have that person around for the rest of their lives.
Using Brona as an example, she drank her deceased mother’s blood, and projects her past impression into a corporeal form. The age appearance of the Blood Projection reflects the age which the past Distorter stopped ageing. If a deceased child Distorter had their blood drank, then the Blood Projection’s age would be the age of death of the child.