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Magic and I

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Magic and I
Book
Autobiography

A true story
Full titleMagic and I
AuthorVuld Shaik
Year published6 BV (523 years ago)
AvailabilityMostly any library
Average cost20 Mizas
Word count~100,000
LanguageCommon, translations exist

Magic and I is a pre-Valterrian book written by Vuld Shaik and the author's most famous work. While it is Shaik's autobiography, narrating his years spent learning magic in Alahea's most influential academy, it is in fact a powerful accusation towards the inhuman treatment of apprentice wizards as well as a warning against the dangers of magic for both the individual and society as a whole. The book opened a deep, bleeding wound in the Alahean social tissue that never healed until the Valterrian, and forced Shaik to live on the run, always fearing for his life. It is still a popular book in post-Valterrian society.

Structure

"Magic and I" takes place over several years, from the author's induction into the Royal Academy of Magic to his eventual expulsion. Among the hardships Shaik has to face are the permanent disability of his left arm due to a Projection incident and having to kill his best friend who had succumbed to overgiving. Psychological and physical torture to himself and the rest of the students are described with Shaik's trademark sarcasm, though there is heartfelt feeling pouring from the pages in the most emotional passages.

  • Preface
  • I. Dreams
  • II. Induction, or what's in a wizard
  • III. Taking a look around
  • IV. First class
  • V. The boy who just vanished
  • VI. Meet the sophomores
  • VII. The test that couldn't be taken twice
  • VIII. Empty-looking dorms
  • IX. I am Master Qiao
  • X. Those who fail at failing
  • XI. Emptier-looking dorms
  • XII. The girl who hid in the corner
  • XIII. Multiple choices, two outcomes
  • XIV. Spiritism 1, and why it was a mistake
  • XV. You don't really need a left arm
  • XVI. On-the-field experience
  • XVII. Ten students, five hundred wolves
  • XVIII. Run for what's left of your lives
  • XIX. Debriefing
  • XX. Disruptive and unproductive
  • XXI. In which Shaik escapes the brainwashing
  • XXII. Magic and I

Reception

Vuld Shaik, a very prolific writer suspected of being favored by the goddess of memory Qalaya, finihed "Magic and I" in mere weeks. Even though his truths were often whispered in trusted circles, he had a hard time finding a publisher willing to risk the wizard class' wrath. In the end, he self-published the manuscript with the revenues from his earlier works. From that moment on, he never spent three nights under the same roof again, seeking shelter throughout Alahea.

"Magic and I" has been praised as the "deconstruction of the wizard archetype", showing the weaknesses and faults of the dominating magic system in Alahea. Ironically, however, enrollment at magic academies did not decrease following its publication. The harsh reality and the sadism described in the book were so vivid that they created an entire new decadent sub-culture revolving around the values of wizard abuse and pushing magic to the limit. The inhuman treatment of young apprentices came to be viewed as an inevitable character-building experience leading to true power. This culture still exists today.