The Stolen Dream
For hundreds of years, one man has held the Dragon Empire together: the Archmage. While an everyday wizard works magic that can astound or destroy a crowd, the Archmage casts spells that make the civilized world safe and prosperous. His magic quiets storms, enlivens crops, and staves off plague. The Empire has experienced a steady growth in order, security, and wealth, largely because the Archmage wards off chaos, peril, and calamity.
The Archmage is the High Arcanist of the Dragon Empire. His magic sustains the land, preserves the empire, and protects it from threats both mundane and magical. His experiments have produced cities in the clouds, ensorcelled draconic governors, and super-abundant harvests – when they haven’t perverted the laws of nature.
The Archmage’s base of operations is in Horizon, although his organization stretches across the empire. Mage-Militants and Authentic Thaumaturges govern arcane research centers, protecting and maintaining the ley lines that criss-cross the empire.
The Archmage’s plans and projects are beyond the ken of normal people, but even normal people are part of his schemes. The Empire’s farms plant different crops at different times, all coordinated by the Archmage’s schedule. Merchants and travelers consult the Archmage’s almanacs to find the best times to set sail. But the common people have little appreciation for what the Archmage does for them. People even complain about the Archmage’s instructions, as if he were a capricious bureaucrat in the imperial offices.
The Archmage maintains the wards that protect the Empire through a series of magical nodes, placed at strategic points across the land. The nodes tap into ley lines, which occur naturally (although the imperial ley lines are better controlled and more powerful) and channel and direct arcane energy from them to the wards.