In this world, all humans are born with wings. Phoenix wings -a gene that, when activated, grants near-immortality to it's wearer- are the rarest form of these, and the products that can be taken from their wings can be used to power spells of extreme power. For this, they are hunted. Our story will be following a group of phoenixes on the run after a fire at the market activated the hidden gene. After suddenly discovering their true nature, they must escape capture from various governments, organizations, and individuals seeking to use them for profit (or worse).
This will be a medieval fantasy adventure with many chances for collaborative worldbuilding as they travel across Aerynthia in order to complete this roleplay's end goal, finding a way for our phoenixes to live without fear of capture. The plot will be mostly character driven, but I will provide plot points when necessary, and I plan on everyone working together to make a story that we can all enjoy. This rp will likely have some found family themes as well as some darker moments (they are trying to escape being used as human spell-component farms, after all), and possibly some heists, political intrigue, and even pirates.
Characters don't have to be phoenixes, but they must be linked to the main group. I will be allowing up to two characters per person (although we may have later rounds of characters where you could make more), but at least one character must be either a phoenix or allied with the main group of phoenixes. If you would like your secondary character to be a phoenix hunter, then please DM me about it. This rp will not be first come first served. I am aiming for a group of 3-6 people and weekly posting (life comes first, so I understand if you don't post every week, but please make an attempt), and I will be picking participants based on character sheets at the end of January 29th (PST). This rp will require participants to have a Discord, as I will be making a Discord server for the OOC once everyone has been picked.
Of course, remember to follow RPnation rules. Be civil to one another and please don't do any 18+ content. If you fail to follow those guidelines, then I will not hesitate to kick you out of the rp.
And, just a reminder, we're all roleplaying to make a story and have fun. If you have any questions that haven't been answered by the other tabs, need help with your character, or anything else like that, then feel free to DM me!
1. Follow RPnation rules
2. No 18+ content
3. Be civil to everyone else in the rp
4. Have a Discord
5. Please try to post at least weekly (it's understandable to miss here and there, but make an attempt). If you can, please tell us when you won't be able to post
7. General RP guidelines (no being overpowered, no Mary Sues, etc)
8. 2-3 paragraph minimum post length
A sheet of parchment lays blank before us... or does it? As we watch, a blot of ink drips onto the page and begins to branch outward, detailing a landscape of fluffy clouds and jagged mountains. A flock of dragons zip through the treetops of a forest with no clear ground. Whales dip in and out of the clouds as easily as if they were water. A herd of perytons disturbs the freshly fallen snow of one of the many peaks that pierce the unknown fogs below.
Welcome to Aerynthia, world of clouds and stone. Here, almost all known life has been gifted with flight -an essential ability when ninety-three percent of the world drops off into a mysterious (and presumably deadly) abyss. The only landmasses are mountains, particularly tall trees, and the occasional floating kingdom.
~The Floating Kingdoms~
We zoom in to face a bustling city housed on the back of a whale. Its composed of open-air tiers supported by a thick, middle pillar (and -on some of the lower, larger ones- a handful of extra masts) and capped with a castle gilded in vibrant metals that give the illusion of flame. This mainland is orbited by numerous, smaller islands of earth and stone -most of which being used for farming. Each island is tethered to the whale by a bright pink beam of light borne from one of the many brilliant purple crystals sprouting across it's form like barnacles. It is for these crystals that the Kingdom of Amethyst is named.
This kingdom is where we will begin our adventure (specifically in the Diamond Plaza, a popular marketplace on the mainland), but it is far from the only floating kingdom we will see. These kingdoms are as diverse as their inhabitants (which is to say, very), but they tend to take on a couple specific characteristics. They are mobile, and through their mobile nature they often become trading hubs for merchants with airships or immobile settlements.
Inhabitants of the floating kingdoms -often referred to as drifters- are often from a variety of backgrounds. Due to the fact that these kingdoms operate as trading centers, many different people mingle upon them, resulting in their diverse populations. They become melting pots of culture and knowledge. While drifters aren't without their various prejudices and stereotypes, their laws tend to be more tolerant of various religions and doctrines (whether this is because it brings in more business or because they are exposed to more of them, no one is quite sure).
~The Grounded Kingdoms~
We turn to the mountain that the Kingdom of Amethyst is flying away from. It flourishes with trees, rice paddies, goat pastures, and barley fields. Various entrances dot the surface, most accompanied by a small, balcony-like structure to serve as takeoff and landing pad, and some adorned with a sturdy rope-bridge for transporting items too heavy to fly with. From here we can't see it, but the inside of the mountain is hollowed out. Mining operations expand inside, creating various tunnels and caverns that follow veins of ore. Grand bridges and towers are carved so skillfully from the rock that it seems as if the stone itself grew to accommodate the people within. A solid panel of quartz gives the mountain a flat top and allows diluted sunlight to beam in from above.
This is the world of a dweller -what the inhabitants of the grounded kingdoms are often called. In the mountains, the majority of people spend their live -quite literally- beneath a rock. Much as the expression suggests, dwellers don't get much news beyond their kingdom. Their access to the skies beyond is limited to what's within flying distance and accented by the occasional visit by an airship or floating kingdom. Their life isn't as varied as the drifters, but they are mostly self-supporting, and provide many raw materials that the floating kingdoms couldn't live without.
Dwellers, of course, aren't limited to mountains. Many of the grounded kingdoms take residence in Aerynthia's forests, creating worlds of treehouses and rope-bridges. Though they aren't physically living under a rock, they are in a very similar situation to the mountain-based kingdoms. Dwellers tend to have extremely localized cultures. Many are famous for specialization (one might even say perfection) of various skills, such as farming, crystal growing, blacksmithing, etc. It's hard to make any generalizations of grounded kingdoms aside from their extreme differences, as their isolation breeds the various specificities that make them stand apart.
As you have likely gleaned from the premise, phoenixes are born from the combination of a rare mutation and an "activation". Knowledge of the activation isn't common (although most phoenix hunters and active phoenixes know of this). In order to activate phoenix wings, you must set your wings on fire (which is dangerous for obvious reasons). Activation comes with a physical change in the wings (they become particularly shiny, have a slight glow, and turn red, orange, yellow, or a combination of those colors), and access to the abilities associated with a phoenix.
Phoenix abilities vary between individuals, but the one they all share is rebirth. If a phoenix is killed, then they will revive within a day and revert back to the state they were in when they were activated with their memories intact. This usually leaves them weak and tired for around a week afterward, but it this can go on for a month depending on how much energy it took to reverse their death. The only way to permanently kill a phoenix is to remove it's wings, otherwise prevent them from using the magical energy within them, or make them use up all of their magical energy without giving them time to replenish it.
Phoenixes may also have secondary abilities, such as fire resistance, fire manipulation, or healing tears. These vary greatly, but they all are at least somewhat linked to what abilities we would imagine a phoenix having (fire related, healing related, etc). Keep in mind that they already have self-revival, so try not to go too overboard with these.
The phoenix mutation is not limited to bird-based wings. Anyone could have the phoenix gene and no one (themselves included) would be any the wiser. However, pre-activation phoenixes tend to have no secondary abilities related to their wings (regular secondary abilities explained under "Wings"), and -if they do have them- then they will lose them upon activation in exchange for their new abilities.
Parts of phoenix wings (feathers, scales, wing dust, etc) can be used to power strong spells due to the large amount of magical energy within them. However, phoenixes cannot use these components for themselves. This is because these magical energies are already harnessed to them for the purposes of sustaining their life-force and/or powering their secondary abilities. Even an unrelated phoenix trying to use a phoenix-based component cannot, because the component is naturally predisposed to sustaining the life-force/powering the secondary abilities of phoenixes.
Secondary abilities are not limited to phoenixes. Wings come in all shapes and sizes, and oftentimes come with abilities secondary to flight. A person with dragon-based wings might be able to breathe fire, for example. Some bird-based wings may come with air current manipulation. These abilities may be similar to spellcasting, but -while they technically may be powered by magical energy- they are not considered spells. They're just something that some people can innately do. Not everyone has secondary abilities, but they're fairly common (it's about a 50/50 split).
Some wings also come with secondary physical traits, such as claws, patches of feathers, or sharper teeth. These traits are almost always somewhat minor, and never alter a person to the point that they are unrecognizable as human. For example, a person with dragon-based wings may have sharper teeth, but they won't have an entire dragon head. A person with bird-based wings might have eyes similar to an owl's, but they won't have a beak.
Wings are genetically inheritable. Excepting odd mutations, a child will have wings of a similar type to their parents. Two people, one with falcon-based and one with hummingbird-based wings, may have a child with seagull-based wings, or various other types of bird, but they will likely not have a child with insect-based wings.
Magic as we imagine it is far less defined than the magic of Aerynthia. What we may think of as magical -dragons, flying whales, etc- are just their everyday. When they use the word "magic", they are referring to a broad field of science that focuses on magical energies, their sources, and how to harness them. It has many subfields, such as alchemy (the conversion or purification of various materials), enchantment (permanent spells, usually placed upon items or locations), and divination (predictions of the future, usually only finds the most likely events). Like many fields of science in our world, magic overlaps with other sciences. An alchemist needs have just as much knowledge of chemistry as a physicist needs of mathematics.
Like most fields of science, magic has laws. The only one you will likely need to know for this rp is that magical energy follows the law of conservation of energy. Magical energy cannot be created or destroyed, only converted into a different form. This is why most spells and other magical processes must be powered by components (such as jackelope horns, amethysts, phoenix feathers, etc). Some animals and items (such as gemstones and jackelopes) naturally gather these magical energies, making them optimal sources for magical energy. Spells that take larger amounts of energy require either more components or more focused/pure components (meaning they have more magical energy).
Harnessing magical energy is difficult, often requiring complex runes, rituals, and other processes to be completed properly. The education on these subjects, combined with the cost of components, makes the study of magic very difficult and expensive. It is for this reason that most accomplished mages are wealthy. The common person may know how to cast a few spells, but most are simple, small, and only help with housework or cure a mild ailment.
LINK TO CS THREAD: Fantasy - Flight of the Phoenix CS Thread
(CSs due at the end of January 29th PST)