Friday, 2 April 2010

Why Wizards Need Therapy (#fridayflash)

Extract from Pathos in Magickal Spells by H. R. White (London: Society for Alchemistic Researches, 1721 [censored 1722-1951])


XXI. We have established, dear reader, that Pathos, in addition to Rhetoric, Mineral, and Fire, is essential to the successful binding of any Magickal spell.

XXII. As a magician, you must learn to control Pathos, storing it inside yourself ready to channel into Magickal spells.

XXIII.Pathos should be stored discreetly and should not be shared with other magicians, nor with faeries.

XXIV. Spells cast at the moment Pathos first strikes are always more powerful.

XXV. Casting spells on the spur of the moment, however, is not to be advised, as you may regret the spell, thus necessitating you to wastefully expend Magickal energy reversing its enchantment.

XXVI. Beware, dear reader, of casting a spell in anger. Magickal spells cast in anger are the most powerful of all. Enchantments energised by freshly stoked anger can never be reversed or repelled.

XXVII. Magicians who persistently cast spells in anger are liable to be expelled from all Magickal Societies and to have their license to practice Magick revoked.


XLII. The powers of forgiveness hold no sway in the realm of Magick.

XLIII. Recall the 89th law of the Book of Magick: “The Council of Wizards knows neither mercy nor graciousness. Their memory is everlasting.”

XLIV. Therefore, spells cast with the Pathos of pity almost invariably fail. In the unlikely event of the Magick being successful, the binding of the enchantment will be weak.

XLV. Magicians who persistently cast spells out of pity will soon find their Magickal powers diminishing.



  1. This has a really nice voice. Both that of a grimoire explanatory and the personality of the magician who wrote it also shines through

    marc nash

  2. The wizard's lot is a hard one, then.

    It's not all dancing, laughing, and setting off fireworks with hobbits, eh? :)

    That 89th Law is quite draconian!

    Quite agree with Marc about the voice in this piece.

    Title is inspired. Well done all around!

  3. Do not share the Pathos with faeries!


    Things like this make me remember why I love the creativity of the human mind so much. Well done.

  4. This was a very neat read. Love your framework/style in the story.

  5. Draconian! Yes. This was excellent rulemaking David.

  6. So an ounce of prevention is better than a pound of cure even in realms where mass no longer applies?

  7. I would fail as I don't read instructions...
    Excellent advice/warnings. Liked the flow of it.

  8. oo-er, who'd be a wizard or on the receiving end of their magick. Very clever, strong voice and nicely framed.

  9. Yes, like the format of this. You play the language and the excerpt format so well in this. Well written, with a nice progression.

  10. So many rules, I'm not sure it's worth becoming a wizard. I think I won't bother, after all.

    You managed the style very well here, the language is spot on.

  11. Rules, rules, rules.
    It sucks, really, that even wizards have to play by them.
    Well-written rules, nevertheless.

  12. Whoa, they are a tough, unforgiving lot! Very interesting and I like the format. Very interesting.

    I hope these wizards get anger management training.

  13. "Casting spells on the spur of the moment, however, is not to be advised..." Well, that lets ME out, then - I obviously don't have what it takes to be a Wizard (assuming they HAVE female ones!). Great story - can imagine Harry Potter reading this instruction book at Hogwarts :-)