Witches are the most similar to humans out of all of the magical species in Ilysia, looking no different than their mundane counter parts on the outside. They go through adolescence around the same age as humans beginning around the age of ten and reaching full maturity at age twenty-one. After this is when they become much different from humans, physically aging three times slower with a life expectancy of about two hundred years. Like humans, they have some of the most varied appearances with skin tones ranging from porcelain to midnight and a multitude of eye colors. Witches are also the only species to have natural red shades of hair, making the color a mark of witch blood in any Ilysian.
Like the Fae, the society of witches is also divided. They split with the Fae over the same issues of ethics with their magic after first attempting to police the conflict with their priestesses. Witches are the chief guardians and rulers of religion in Ilysia, with assistance of the Fae and Elves. When the Fae Civil War split both species down a moral code, it also created another religion across the land that fell in line with those that followed the dark path’s way of living. This path that is considered unnatural was what lead the dark witches along with the dark fae to create the vampires and werewolves during the war. Those that stood with the white fae and labeled themselves as white witches saw themselves as guardians of the balance of nature and life, standing against those that lived by rules that only satisfied the self.
Witch magic is very powerful. It is known that the strongest and most powerful oracles in Ilysia are witches. While there are Fae and Elven oracles, it is the witches that are able to see the threads of time the best. It is rare for an important prophecy to be delivered by an oracle that is anything other than a witch. These special gifts also are the reason that the witches are in charge of protecting the religious history and culture of Ilysia.
With witch society being split into the white witches and the dark witches, it also divides how they are ruled. Both societies of witches do have a ruling witches council but they also fall under the rule of another. The white witches are ruled by the human monarchy, which now carries significant amounts of witch blood thanks to several having several witches as Queens. The dark witches are ruled by the Queen of the Dark Fae, who now calls herself the Empress of all Ilysia. The councils oversee the witches but still answer to their chosen King or Queen, as if they are a kingdom within another kingdom. It is a society that is not matriarchal or patriarchal but based on full equality of the sexes.
Witches are powerful allies on both sides of the divide. They carry similar weaknesses to humans, as undead vampires can bespell them. The toxic bites of werewolves are painful and crippling, with the ability to kill them in a matter of days if they don’t receive an antidote. Out of all magical species in the lands, they carry the most similarities to humans. Witches are even genetically like humans. The only differences between a witch and the only mundane Ilysian species are the genetic markers that extend their life and the ones gift them with their abilities to manipulate and control elements. While appearing almost human, witches very much hold their own in the hierarchy of power in Ilysia.
Top photo: Lady Anna Corvíanés: Head of Affairs on the White Witches Council and Head of Witches Affairs on King William III’s council. A descendent of Queen Anna the Beloved’s brother Lord Arthur Corvíanés. Concept art by Le Fey Designs
Bottom photo: Legendary Queens concept art (White Fae Queen Maelyn is on the left and Queen Anna from the monarchy that rules the Humans and White Witches on the right) by Le Fey Designs