The Circle of Magi would first become an idea when James and his best friend in Kieth Schwartz a powerful Magi discussed how much good Magi could do for the nation if it was controlled and kept safe. The Circle of Magi would change from its original mandate after James Lovie became obsessed with the chaotic book Mysticism and wished for more and more information on Magi. To do this he begin changing from the original vision that Kieth, Khadgar, and he had shared and instead of gathering knowledge for the betterment of the nation they became obsessed with keeping it hidden. The Circle became a very secret order whose existence was known to less the a handful of people in the entire Kingdom, and to keep this secret all members were sworn to secrecy and the Valley of Tarnbooth became a place that no one was allowed to go or leave. The Circle of Magi would be responsible for nearly the entire spree of violence that was purported by the evil mind of James Lovie, and they would thus the lower echelon of the Circle of Magi would become sacrificed as well in order for the leadership to escape the Valley of Lucerne. Following James Lovie's exile the Circle of Magi is now operating under James Lovie inside the ruins of the former Bretonian city of Orleans. Here they work for James in gathering more and more Magi knowledge to him.
The Circle of Magi is governed under the overall leadership of the Grand Enchanter who elects the members of the Council of Deacons. Standing beneath the Council of Deacons are the sworn members of the Circle of Magi who are organized into the First Enchanters who control divisions of the Circle, and beneath them lie Senior Enchanters who stand as lower level commanders.
The Council of Deacons stood as the senior leadership of the Circle of Magi and was the top commanders standing beneath the Grand Enchanter. The Deacons were notable in that once elected they could only be removed through death and once removed there Title was replaced by a new Deacon with their personal title being left blank.
Within the Circle of Magi stood the circles of which were different branches of control within the overall of Circle of Magi with each being controlled by a Deacon. The Circles could be created to serve individual purposes or in the case of several of the towers of the Circle as a means of controlling what went on at the location in question.
The Harrowing is a test that every mage apprentice must go through to become a full Circle mage. The test involves the apprentice entering the Fade through the use of lyrium. Once in the Fade, the mage apprentice must face, and subsequently overcome, a demon who wishes to possess the mage's body and enter the living realm. The demon is summoned by the mages of the Circle of Magi to the same part of the Fade the mage apprentice enters and is promised a living body will be waiting for it when it arrives. If the mage apprentice succeeds in resisting the demon, they granted the title of mage and become a full member of the Circle of Magi.
However, if the mage is overwhelmed by the demon, or takes too long to complete the task, the mage is killed by a group of templars who are standing by so the mage does not become an abomination. (It should be noted that one templar is designated with giving the killing blow, and the rest are on standby in case the appointed templar fails.) Because the Harrowing ritual requires a significant amount of lyrium, only promising mages are deemed worthy of attempting it. Those who are not are either forced to become one of the Tranquil or are executed. A mage can also elect to become one of the Tranquil if they wish. Since passing the Harrowing theoretically proves that a mage is capable enough to resist possession, Chantry law forbids making mages who pass their Harrowing Tranquil.
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