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The Horizon and BeyondEdit

The Shadow Realm extends out to the edge of Earth's atmosphere. Beyond this is the Horizon. To breach the Horizon, Mages must either use the Spirit 4 Road Master spell to cross the Horizon, find one of the rare and typically well guarded gateways between the Shadow Realm and the Horizon, or they can use the Space 4 spell Teleportation to teleport beyond the Earthly sphere. The Spirit 3 & Space 3 are both insufficient for such epic journeys.

Once beyond Earth, the vastness of space has a Gauntlet of 1, but with a vast number of verges – outer space is not identical to the Shadow Realm, but it is easy to move back and forth between them, sometimes dangerously so. Known as the Deep Domain, the Shadow Realm equivalent of outer space is very sparsely inhabited, but does contain a few creatures, both vast and small that navigate the solar winds, feeding on one another, and occasionally attacking travelers. Such threats are very rare, and are exceedingly uncommon inside the orbit of the Moon, but these creatures have devoured several mundane space probes sent to Mars and have attacked a few ships sent out by the Void Engineers and the Sons of Ether.

Visiting other planets requires either the Space 4 spell Teleportation or some sort of technological, magical, or technomagical vessel capable of traveling through space. These planet are barren of humanity and thus has a Gauntlet of 1. Mages with the Spirit 2 Place of Power rote can lower the Gauntlet at any location on these worlds or in outer space and create a temporary Verge. In addition, there are a number of natural Verges on every planet and moon in the solar system. Various planets also have associations with various Arcana:

World/Arcana

Sun/Prime

Mercury/Space

Venus/Life

Luna/Fate

Mars/Forces

Jupiter/Matter

Saturn/Time

Uranus/Spirit

Neptune/Mind

Pluto/Death

The Shadow Realms of the various planets are exotic places that are associated with both the particular Arcana associated with that planet, and also with some of the legends and stories about that world. The second is true in large part because each planet contains a gateway between the Astral Realm in Temenos associated with legends of that world, like the astral realm of Mars (see Astral Realms, pp 158-166). Through some unknown mechanism, astral creatures from these realms either slip through into the Shadow Realms of these planets or their influence reshapes the spirits that inhabit these realms. The associated Arcana also make these portions of the Shadow Realm particularly strange. In the Mercury Realm, buildings often have Escher-like qualities, with doorways leading to distant rooms and a variety of exotic shortcuts. Meanwhile, the Venus Realm, life abounds, further reinforcing the aspect of this realm as a primordial jungle filled with all manner of living things, including everything from vast predators to hideously mobile protoplasmic horrors. Similarly, the Mars realm features violent storms, and the inhabitants regularly use technologies and magics that manipulate vast energies and energy weapons are used instead of firearms in the more technological portions.

The Deep RealmEdit

The asteroid belt is another barrier, known as the Deep Horizon, one which can only be pierced using a Spirit 5 or Space 5 spell, or by finding one of the various gateways into the deep horizon. Most of these gateways are found upon various asteroids, and each gateway can lead to a series of destinations, most of which are on or near one of the outer planets.

The asteroid belt is also the physical representation of the limits of the Consensus. Out beyond it, reality begins to fray. Past the Deep Horizon, the Gauntlet falls to 0 and there is no difference between the Shadow Realm and the physical world. In addition, creatures from the Abyss can appear beyond the Far Horizon of their own accord, without being summoned (accidentally or deliberately), and while it is a constant effort for them to remain here, sometimes this effort is worthwhile.

The Jupiter Realm connects directly to the Hollow Worlds (see below), but the realms of the other outer planets are strange and dangerous places that most mages avoid. The Realm of Pluto is exceedingly deadly, and mages who visit the Realm of Saturn rarely return.

Beneath the Earth – The Hollow WorldsEdit

The Shadow Realm also extends into spaces that correspond to locations below the surface of the Earth, into various exotic caves filled with chthonic spirits. However, the depths of the Shadow Realm also offer access to other realms. These spirit caves offer gateways that go directly from the Shadow Realm to the Underworld, and which anyone who can get past the guardians can pass, without a knowledge of the Death Arcana. Unfortunately, various powerful underworld denizens guard almost all of these gateways. In addition, there are also gateways into the exotic region know as either "Innerspace" or the "Hollow Worlds". Mages who journey beneath the surface of the Shadow Realm and who use the Spirit 4 Road Master spell can create their own temporary gateways into the Hollow Worlds", or they can find one of the various permanent gateways. Mages who have visited this realm can return using the Space 4 spell Teleportation.

The Hollow Worlds consists of a maze of tunnels, some of which lead back to the Shadow Realm or to the Underworld, others of which lead to a variety of strange and exotic parallel worlds, such as the exotic Hollow Earth, various realms filled with prehistoric creatures, and other lost and mysterious lands. Some have human inhabitants, others have no native intelligent life, and some are home to non-human intelligences that are alien to humanity, but not necessarily hostile. All of these realms are relatively small, with none being more than 1,000 miles across and most being smaller. Awakened magic is exceptionally rare in these realms, but the inhabitants of some of these realms use exotic technologies or some form of unawakened magic. Some Mages believe that the realms of Innerspace connect Earth to various parallel worlds. Thus, while Atlantis and the Hollow Earth are clearly not parallel worlds, they may contain gateways to such worlds, just as both realms contain gateways to our Earth. See The Infinite Tapestry – pp. 114-116 for ideas and inspiration.

Unlike the various planetary Realms, the small Realms found in Innerspace are actual physical worlds, character can use spirit magic to step from these worlds into the Shadow Realm or into Twilight.

Horizon RealmsEdit

In addition to maintaining astral constructs, some mages also wish to have isolated safe havens with some degree of physical reality. These locations are all found in Inner Space, and most can only be accessed through a gateway located somewhere on Earth, or via the Jupiter Realm.

NotesEdit

Breathing in Outer Space: Mages who travel beyond the Horizon in their physical bodies can breathe without external life support if they can make a successful Gnosis + Spirit roll. Failure means they will suffocate if they do not have some external air supply. Experienced travelers who have successfully made this roll three times in a row need never do so again.

Using Mind Magic: Mages who excel in the Mind Arcana can use the Mind 5 spell Shadow Projection to visit any of the above realms. Mages visiting other planets can only visit the Shadow Realm of the planet, not the actual planet, since as a projection they have no physical substance. The only way around this limitation is to use the Prime 4 spell Marionette, to create a body they can automatically inhabit or to possess the body of someone visiting this planet. In addition, if a Mage uses this spell to visit any of the worlds of Innerspace, they remain as projections in Twilight and cannot physically appear without either possessing a body or using the Prime 4 spell Marionette, to create a body they can automatically inhabit.

Sources: Both the Mage 2nd edition supplement The Book of Worlds, and the Mage (rev) supplement The Infinite Tapestry are used as inspiration for this piece, and while the goal is for something closer to the realms described in The Book of Worlds, rather than the destruction and doom that filled The Infinite Tapestry, these realms are not the same as the one being described here.

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