Romance of the Jade Kingdom
The existence of magic is very important in shaping life within the Shenyue Empire and throughout Cyrene. Magic is not common place, but practitioners of magic lie within all parts of the empire, though some are not as open about their abilities as others. No one knows where magic itself comes from, but many credit the god of magic (Wenchang, the Enlightened Scholar), the goddess of the mystical arts (Erlang Shang, the Third Eye Seeress), and the god of the dark arts (Jum Sum, the Shadow Man), as the progenitors of much of the magic in the world.
Like other disciplines, a variety of schools can be found throughout Shenyue if one were so inclined to seek them out. The most renowned school for magic is the Academy of the Scholars Arcana, an institution that focuses equally on each of the eight schools of magic. Along with the arcane, the academy also expands upon their students’ scholarly pursuits, teaching students about wise counsel, philosophy, history, and stratagems of war. Many graduates become advisors and strategists for province lords. The main campus can be found in the capital city of Tianyu, but seven other campuses exist: some are located in civilization, including within the walled city of Chi Bi, the exotic trade city of Rajapur to the west, and the southern capital of Tzankara; others can only be reached by magical means or found within the most remote locations. Although all types of magic are taught, each academy has mastered one of the schools of magic, with a Grand Wu Shi (or master wizard) who presides over the whole school. In Tianyu, the Wu Shi is Zhu Liang, a powerful and benevolent scholar who has long over mastered the art of Evocation.
The other noteworthy school of magic is tied to the teachings of the four elements: fire, water, earth, and air. Four ancient monasteries scattered throughout the Shenyue Empire instruct dedicated apprentices in the way of an elemental power. Known as the Way of the Four Furies, each monastery allows the initiate to follow the path of a monk or, if the initiate displays a preternatural gift towards the arcane arts, as a sorcerer. Often the student knows before stepping foot in the school where their destiny lies.