I rooted through old papers the other day, and chanced upon a couple of doodles of Young Ben and his adventures. Enjoy
I've built up a lot of exposition about Ben's youth - I'm thinking about writing some short novel about it some day.
Most relevant parts take place at Univer City, THE place of learning, magical or otherwise. A wacky place, with not a few teachers that are mad, evil, demonic and/or inflicted with crippling magical disorders. Univer doesn't discriminate - if it did, it'd have to raise its wages.
The city covers a big part of a subtropical island, and is full of students, teachers, staff and permanent inhabitants. Large constructs drain mana from a vast expanse of ocean to supply the magical needs of the people. (A hotly debated question is how to possibly expand magical knowledge to the rest of the world, when calculations show that if everyone in the world was a mage, you would need nine additional worlds to draw mana from, if everyone's mana usage were to stay the same. )
Divinities are politely but firmly requested to stay off the island, because with the magically charged, unstable mess the population is, the last thing they need is for people to start having bloody Adventures there. As a consequence, the island is somewhat of a haven for persons of infernal or necrotic persuasions.
One of the coolest things about the place is their approach to learning. There are a huge number of MYSTERIES and OBSTACLES all over the place. "Is Mr. Drake really a vampire?" "What does Byg-Thuulk
look like under his getup?" "Why does the mild-mannered Mind Magic teacher have horns and a tail?" "Who is the headmaster? Why has no-one ever seen him?" "Has anyone EVER passed DevilDetails101, and how did they do it?!" "Who is the Green Lady I saw in my dreams?" "How can I get past the guardians to visit my boy/girlfriend after curfew?" "What kind of name is 'Univer', anyway?" "Why are the teacher names so ridiculously appropriate?" "What are the 'used meta-memetic constructs' Lucy Venusian sells in the shop downtown, and where does she get them from?" "Is it true that the Creator does guest lectures here, and how do I sign up to hear them?" "Why does the Librarian dress like that? And
with that short dress, how does she manage never to show her underwear?
what species is she, anyway?"
Even the most book-dumb mage is bound to encounter SOME question on campus that makes them think, study, experiment, and - eventually - learn something.
I've had the Librarian planned for a long while, but her current incarnation is admittedly inspired by Adam Warren's Empowered in her guise as a Sexy Librarian
(I haven't decided whether the garter belt has been invented yet, so I'm holding off on that, for now.)
Hearing his nickname from the old days will still make Ben wince. But oh, did he ever deserve it.
Anyone heard of a wizard named Jenkins?