The eighth of the great Races, and the only one not to be shaped by the will of The Eight. Spirits were created through the collective unconsciousness of humanity, in an event that would only foreshadow Humanity’s great potential. Within the delirious, ethereal haze of The Dreaming, humanity’s psychic gestalt began to shape creatures of fantasy. Born of Mankind’s imagination, these creatures begin as mere wisps of thought swirling about in The Dreaming, slowly taking shape as more and more dreamers give it strength and form. Eventually, these creatures gained enough strength to leave The Dreaming of their own volition, spilling into Reality and adding to the magnificence of the magical world. Thus, the Spirits were born.
Spirits draw their strength from Humanity’s collective unconsciousness. In the realm of imagination, anything is possible, and Spirits reflect that. There are a multitude of strains of Spirit, varying by region and era, and each one is more incredible and otherworldly than the last. Though their individual abilities and properties vary by breed, there is one trait they all share, and that is their reliance on belief. Belief is crucial to their survival. The power of the Spirits waxes and wanes in accordance with their believers. They exist only because people believe they do; once people stop believing, they will fade away.
There was a time when Spirits freely walked the earth alongside their creators; but that was a very long time ago. In the wake of The Sundering, and the sealing of previously-enlightened minds, the Spirits suffered. Many of them faded into obscurity, becoming little more than the myths and legends that originally birthed them. Others fled, seeking sanctuary in The Lost Grounds, forgotten places where their existence may stand still, their powers diminished but not yet gone.
Spirits of exceptional power and influence ascended and became The Old Gods, pantheons of deities and mythical beasts that drew power from mankind’s belief. Yet, in the wake of the Sundering, their power, too, was broken. As their worshipers dwindle, the Old Gods’ power wanes. As the old religions began to die, they took their gods with them. Those who fled to the Lost Grounds sustain themselves by the power of the Eight, yet they remain trapped there, clinging to their only source of life. Others were able to retain more belief, as different faiths merged and their legacy continued, albeit changed. Eventually, these, too, were forced to forgo the glories of their past, blending into human society and taking what little prayer they could.
In The Modern Era
One never truly dies until they are forgotten. This, the Spirits take to heart. It is the duty of the Muses to inspire the artists, writers, and scholars of mankind. As long as the names of the old gods are remembered, they will not die. As long as the myths and superstitions survive, so too will the creatures they created. The storytellers of humanity do what they can to preserve the lives of what few Spirits remain. All is not lost. Some day in the future, when mankind reawakens to the spiritual world, perhaps there will be a time when the Spirits can thrive. Until then, however, they watch, and wait, clinging desperately to those who still remember their names.
Notable Spirits include:
The Old Gods