Terminus Roads and Arcs
The Terminus Roads are the gateways that allow quick travel around a settled world. Without them, it would take a person days, if not months, to walk the distances that now take a mere instant. The magic behind them is complex and requires Thaumaturges and Sorcerers with extremely specialized knowledge. Even more complex are the Terminus Arcs. The Arcs are the means by which people can move between worlds. Without the Terminus Arcs each species would surely still exist only on its homeworld, unaware of the others out there. Both Terminus Roads and Arcs are keyed to Nodes that form a vast network of travel and communication. An individual who wishes to travel from one place to another will go to a Terminus Node and from that platform be magically transported to another, receiving, Node far away.
While moving between settled worlds is now (relatively) easy due to the Terminus Arcs, the settling of new worlds remains a task of great difficulty and precision. Using the launch Node without a pre-existing Node to target requires the practitioner to maintain intense concentration and to act only after months of meticulous calculations. Even so, the risk of a targeting failure exists. When that happens the best case scenario is that the colonists and supplies will arrive on the correct world but wildly off-target; perhaps even scattered across an entire continent. More likely, they’re simply never heard from again. Thus, one of the first tasks upon the discovery of a new world is to construct a Terminus Node to make further exploration and possible settlement viable.
A variant on Terminus Roads has recently come into more frequent use. Auxiliary Nodes for the Terminus Arc can be built within the approximate area of the main Terminus Arc itself. These are effectively Terminus Roads that lead only to the Arc itself. They allow people to bounce off the Arc and use its ability to project to a location that does not have a Node. Therefore, intraworld travel can be accomplished prior to the building of Terminus Roads. Though the method is far more difficult and costly than a controlled journey through an established network of Terminus Roads.
Terminus Roads and Arcs are built, maintained, and primarily operated by Terminus Engineers. Becoming a Terminus Engineer requires years of specialized training and magical knowledge that most people cannot attain. The most skilled and sought after Terminus Engineers tend to be members of the Givick species who are commonly known for having a natural instinct for the craft. Terminus Engineers are not suitable as player characters.