Be aware that much of the following is hypothetical in nature, and that further study will be necessary to confirm my suspicions. With the recent Reality-Shift, it is possible that some or all of my data thus far has been rendered invalid.

Those mortals who are gifted with the ability to manipulate the reality-warping forces which we refer to as "magic" are one of the greatest mysteries of our hidden world. the "Mages" are undeniably human, and are possessed of the usual human frailties, yet they command power which surpasses all bu the most powerful of Kindred. I have encountered a handful of these beings during my Requiem, and the sheer variety of their extramundane capabilities is astounding.

From the evidence I have seen, Mages are capable of manipulating forces such as light, heat and gravity; manipulate the flow of time; alter their own physical forms; directly drain the lifespan of another being in order to extend their own and even temporarily manipulate the suprnatural characteristics of other beings (a talent which myself and some others of Newcastle's Kindred have been disconcertingly subjected to).

Magic takes on a number of forms, and different types of Mages seem to be versed in the manipulation of different varieties. "High" magic (for want of a better word) encompasses all magical effects which can be cast at will in a short space of time. This is the type of magic which is usually attributed to Mages in the various stories of their kind. High magic literally seems to allow the mage to alter reality through simple application of will, and it is easy to see why the stories of the mages describe them as being so terrible when angered. While I am certain that mages attempt to codify their abilities much the way our kind has codified the Disciplines, I can only imagine the futility of trying to catalogue a system of power by which the fabric of the universe can be so wildly changed. This may lead to the fully justified question of why the Earth itself does not shake to the rhythm of mage wars, as magic-users compete with one another using reality itself as their weapon. I can only say that my research indicates there was a time when that was the case. The oldest mortal myths describe the actions of demigods who wielded enormous power, and it is my belief that the Mages are likely responsible for such legends (though ancient and powerful members of our own species are hardly blameless in their propagation of similar stories about their own triumphs).

Why this state of affairs does not endure into the modern nights is something of which I cannot be entirely certain, but I do not think it purely coincidence that with the rise of Rome and documented Kindred influence over mortal society, the power of the Mages began to decline. Perhaps the spread of our kind was anathema to them in some manner, or perhaps reality itself simply began to reject the worst excesses of magely power. Either way, we seem to have supplanted their kind as the puppetmasters of the human race.

Other forms of magic exist in addition to the High magic of the mages. "Lesser" magic seems to work on the principle of static rituals which achieve specific effects. The results of these rituals are often low-key and difficult to achieve, and seldom compare in power to what can be done using High magic or the preternatural abilities of our own Blood. All the same, these sorcerous spells appear to be a part of reality, almost as if they exist as loopholes in the laws of physics. I have encountered certain mortals who have mastered a great many of these rituals, and have become quite a power in their own right. I have even called upon Lesser magic during my Requiem to achieve small things which are outside the purviews of my Disciplines.

The last form of magic of which I am aware is the Blood Sorcery of our own kind. Practiced primarily by the Lancea Sanctum and my own Covenant, the Circle of the Crone, Blood sorcery appears to be based on the principle of sacrifice to a higher power in order to receive a portion of that power's blessing. In truth I would wager that the Sorceries of our kind bear little difference to other Disciplines, and simply rely upon our Blood as a conduit to chanel spiritual energies into the physical world, in order to achieve effects somewhat more arcane than those of more "normal" Disciplines. This does not mean that the sacrifical element of such sorceries is meaningless - Spirits are universally proud and arrogant beings, which seldom are willing to deal out power to those who come to them in anything but supplication…continues

Excerpt from Alexander Gideon's Treatise on Cryptofauna

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