I’ve been thinking about magical transportation — namely, the problem with instantaneous travel over long distances, or teleportation. How and why does it work? Even in a setting that makes use of magic, I’d want a sense of consistency to how it works, like having “lightspeed” or “hyperdrive” engines on a spaceship. Except, I’d want to know how it works, even magically.

I’ve been coming up with methods of travel based on the Seven States system I’m designing, and I’ve come up with a starting point for each State so far — Natural movement covers most methods of movement we’d expect to have access to: walking, running, sliding, falling, climbing, crawling, burrowing, flying, swimming — and the movement modes that utilize the other types of magic are inspired by these.

The world is layered — each layer dominated by one state, but affected by its neighbors, with the most distant ones exerting the least pull. The layers with the most influence on the Natural world are those of Light and Darkness, sources of Wonder and Mystery. Traveling via the magic of Light or Darkness transports the caster to a realm of primordial trees or caverns, respectively. Navigation is the main obstacle.

Other forms of movement are more perilous to mortals — the magic of Entropy hurls the caster down an endless abyss, where they must maintain themselves and find their destination as they hurtle downwards infinitely at impossible speeds — the magic of Chaos folds the world over the caster again and again until they arrive at their destination, possibly overwriting and destroying the traveler’s mind in the process.

The last two movement methods, while the fastest and easily the most powerful, are the most dangerous — Spirit travel requires the caster to abandon physical and mental form, which often results in total dissolution for the unfortunate party, while Aethereal travel — requires the caster pay tribute to the Boatman himself if he hopes to ever reach his destination.