|Ceremonial Manifestation Magic|
Shikibatsu no Mahō
Ceremonial Manifestation Magic (式発の魔法, Shikibatsu no Mahō) is a Holder Magic that involves the summoning of Shikigami. Practitioners of this magic are regarded as Shikigami Summoners (式神召喚士, Shikigami Shōkanshi) or simply Summoners (召喚士, Shōkanshi).
Utilizing parchments of paper known as Ofuda, the Shikigami Summoner is capable of binding the soul of the ethereal Shikigami into the paper, and utilizes their own magical power as a medium to summon them into Earth Land. The Ofuda themselves are ornate with various patterns and words, which distinguish the level, element and physiology of the Shikigami in question. Most Shikigami Summoners learn how to read these scripts quite well prior to acquiring spirits, in the hopes of gaining a spirit that will benefit them in the long run. Dependent on the Shikigami, the approximate level of magical power required to summon them is varied. Most multiple summons can only last a short time due to the strain on the wielder, unless they are low-class Earthly Shikigami being used. Furthermore, it is known that the Summoner and Shikigami tend to have a closer bond if they possess the same, or complementing elemental affinities. These elemental affinities are based on elemental magic: Fire, Water, Wood, Metal and Earth. These are decided at a younger age dependent on the interactions an individual possesses with the Ofuda. Notably, one can have a Void affinity to the Ofuda, therefore being able to command every possible Shikigami with equivalent efficiency, albeit the relationships would be strained.
Contracts and Rules
Ofuda can be attained through a variety of methods. One can forge them themselves through assistance from a Charmsmith (札鍛冶, Fudakaji), purchase them from a specific store, or in the case of Cosmic Shikigami, find them in their hiding spots or gain them from other users. When one attains an Ofuda, they simply channel magical power into it and summon the designated spirit to that Ofuda. Notably, when one deals with Earthly Shikigami, the initial result is varied as there is no specific command for any specific Shikigami to appear. This is because of the nature of Shikigami, who live in specific districts and families dependent on their elemental affinity and physiology.
When one summons a Shikigami for the first time, they are immediately provided with the option of making a Vow of Exchange (応酬の約束, Ōshū no Yakusoku). This Vow of Exchange ascertains the loyalty of the Shikigami to the user, and makes their relationship become reciprocal. When the user provides the Shikigami the ability to retain in Earth Land through their Magic, the Shikigami in turn follows their commands in any way that is possible. Unlike the Celestial Spirit contracts, there are no specific days which the Shikigami can or cannot be summoned, although higher-class Shikigami tend to create such conditions as a means to pester their summoner slightly; albeit, they still follow orders to the letter.
Breaking of this contract causes the Shikigami and summoner to have their bond broken, and the Ofuda's pattern is subsequently "reset", causing it to summon a different Shikigami to the one that the user possessed beforehand. Notably, Shikigami will likely not pledge a Vow of Exchange to a summoner who has broken it beforehand.
- Manifestation (発, Hatsu): Manifestation is the act of binding the spirit into Earth Land through one's own Ofuda, before allowing them to manifest into the world through using one's magical power as a medium. It is a simple process, and the level of cost is dependent on the Summoner.
- Multiple Manifestation (多重発, Tajūbatsu): Multiple Manifestation is a unique art and exclusive to those Summoners with a high level of magical power. Utilizing the same process as Manifestation, the Summoner may summon multiple Shikigami at one time. However, the spell is remarkably taxing and only those with the strongest level of magical power can hope to perform it. Notably, if one has control over their own magical power, it is easier to utilize, albeit at the cost of hampering the Shikigami's abilities.
- Force World Separation (強行世隔離, Kyōkō Yogakuri): Through a mutual agreement by the Shikigami and the Summoner, a Summoner is capable of returning the Shikigami to its own world until it is needed again. However, few Summoners have demonstrated the capability to void the magical power of the Shikigami by absorbing it back into themselves through the Ofuda, and therefore causing them to return to the Shikigami World. While normally a breach of contract, in necessary situations, this is acceptable.
- Magic-Induced Telepathy (魔法誘以心伝心, Mahōyū Ishindenshin): Because both Summoner and Shikigami have the same magical source, they are able to telepathically talk to one another with great ease. The level of this telepathy is dependent on the bond and amount of magical power exchanged between the Summoner and Shikigami.