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Page history last edited by R.A.Ball 11 years, 8 months ago

Magickophores are little micro-organisms that somehow can collect ambient magic energy and process it into biological energy. They are comparable in function to mitochondria or chloroplasts. They have been incorporated into more complex organisms as cellular organelles by beings of the magicka clade.  This gives those beings direct access to magic in the form of active spell casting.  Ambient magic is still usable even without the presence of magickophores in the organisms cells.  Eating high concentrations of magickophores in effect raises the ambient magic available.  This is one of the reasons cloud algae is so popular as a Shashnimyn foodstuff.  There is a subclass of the magicka clade where single cells are primary producers, gaining their energy only from magic.


Magickophores are greatly reduced compared to chemotrophic bacterium.  They are like the mitochondria where the primary cellular mechanism has been completely lost until only the organelle remains.  This is the condition for nearly all magical creatures on Shashnia.  The only exception are the vocanic sludge creatures from inside the planet which appear to be a hybrid chemotroph and magickotroph, and a rare symbiotic bacterium in the digestion systems of some deep oceanic well creatures.


The mechanisms within magickophores have been studied at length, with only a bit of success. 


Magic itself is very hard to find.  It is neither a particle, nor a wave, but may be a field, like magnetism (and maybe gravity).  It can still be sensed, using Detect Magic spells.  The action of these spells is by a resonant process.  A small amount of magic is put out at varying intensities and 'frequencies' until there is some sort of resonant reflection from the ambient magic in the area or target.  Just as sound waves of certain frequencies will excite objects at their resonant frequencies, so works magic.  There are also harmonics in magical fields, allowing quantities much higher than the initial detect magic output to be measured.  The skill at detect magic relates to how much can be sensed.  Advanced users report that intense concentrations of magic have 'asymmetry' or 'colour' which lend themselves better to some tasks than others.


The magickophore has a basic chemical unit which appears to gather or contain magic.  It is similar to chlorophyll or hemoglobin in that it creates a contorted ring that has bonding and detaching with another molecule, the changes between the bonded and unbonded state leading to chemical energy which can then be stored in sugars.  However, in addition to the unbonded configuration, there are six isomers of the bonded configuration, between which the molecule seems to switch at random.  These molecules also tend to aggregate in six molecule clumps and oscillate in tandem with each other.  This leads to 720 (6 factorial) potential states of the group, some apparently more stable than others by their frequency.  In turn, these groups align themselves into disks inside the magicophores, with the electron flowing out between the layers to the transport chains.  The disks counter-rotate relative to each other, sometimes circular or a galatic spiral.  Occasionally, the disks fragment and reorganize themselves.  Disk movement seems to correspond to the type and intensity of the spell they are being used for, but theories regarding this movement are far from reaching consensus.  The sphere of disks can be considered analagous to a thylakoid, and usually has a gap at the center, where resonant detection reveals most of the magic energy is focused.



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