In my story's world, witchcraft is a respected institution, with the most powerful practitioners being at the top echelons of society. Due to this, society traces its lineage through matrilineal lines. Witchcraft is usually exclusive to females, however there is a way for males to gain access to magic abilities. Magic works through incantation, in which an individual says a phrase while using their mana to power the spell. A witch has the ability to share her power with another using an advanced, ancient ritual. They can open up their connection to magic with the respective individual, creating a "warlock". Warlocks can draw on a percentage of mana of the respective witch to conduct spells, up to 50%.

Some rules with this system:

  1. A witch can use her max limit of 50% in different combinations. Ex: she can share fully half her power with one other male or spread it out over 5 people with 10% each.
  2. When a witch dies, the warlock loses access to their mana and can no longer use magic. When a warlock dies, the amount of mana that was siphoned off by him returns to the witch.
  3. Advanced spells that require a certain amount of mana become harder or impossible for a witch when a warlock is siphoning mana from them.
  4. A witch can revoke the connection between her and the warlock with an equally advanced, complex spell without him being present.

Under these circumstances, what would be the benefit of creating a warlock when it makes the witch weaker? Why would one invest in this process?

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    $\begingroup$ @Empischon If you assume that "witch" is a term for female magic practitioners and "warlock" is a term for male magic practitioners it starts to make more sense, as only females can use magic and therefore keeping track of which females in your family tree were able to use magic would be useful. Also, you should be careful when copy-pasting. You accidentally added "5 down vote favorite 2" to the start of your quote, which looks quite awkward. $\endgroup$ – Secespitus Aug 8 '18 at 7:22
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    $\begingroup$ @Empischon Absolutely! And thanks for doing that. It should definitely be clarified by the OP. I've just seen quite a few questions from users with similar behaviour that were focused on "magic only to the women", so I jumped to the conclusion as it's the only thing that makes the second sentence logical. Witch is also defined as a woman, so it's not completely unreasonable for the OP to jump to the conclusion that witchcraft must be reserved for females, too. And I wanted to point out the copy-paste thing :D $\endgroup$ – Secespitus Aug 8 '18 at 7:34
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    $\begingroup$ Can 1 warlock have multiple witches? if yes then covens come to mind with a warlock more powerful than any individual witch. $\endgroup$ – ratchet freak Aug 8 '18 at 9:19
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    $\begingroup$ My guess is that's impact of the Harry Potter series, that distinguished between "witchcraft" and "wizardry" (check Hogwart's full name). $\endgroup$ – Ister Aug 8 '18 at 9:20
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    $\begingroup$ For what it’s worth, the notion that “a warlock is a male witch” described common usage in USA before Harry Potter was created. $\endgroup$ – WGroleau Aug 8 '18 at 11:51

21 Answers 21


Many of the other answers have said some of the things I was going to say, but nobody has mentioned these two:

Warlock as Prince

In feudal times, who married whom was very much a political affair. Marriage was used to cement alliances and political connections. In the same way, choosing to make someone your warlock will bring your house and theirs together. Making someone a warlock has huge political benefits, and comes with the great side benefit that now they're invested in your well-being (where maybe they weren't so much before).

The merchants in House Terramille giving you too much trouble over something that's not worth starting an out-and-out war over? Find a few minor sorceresses and get them married off warlocked-up to second or third sons of lesser branches of the House.

The Earl of Preston is getting antsy because he shares a border with you and worries that trying to compete for resources with the Sorceress' Tower will ruin him? Convince him of your goodwill by making him one of your warlocks. In fact, let's just cut this off at the pass. Any ruler of any kingdom sharing a border with us should just be one of our warlocks.

This works best with middling, weak-but-not-TOO-weak sorceresses. The pratical drawbacks are much less. Really powerful sorceresses actually care that the power gets used how they want, leading to ...

Warlock as Cannon Fodder

When a warlock dies, nothing much happens to the sorceress. When a sorceress dies, that's all, folks!

So for certain types of really dangerous missions - ones that don't require access to the demanding spells - you want to send a warlock. If they accomplish their mission, great! If they fail, no big deal.

This works especially well if you can un-warlock somebody. They sign a contract where they agree to undertake several near-suicidal missions in place of Archwitch Weatherwax, and if they survive, they get to keep their warlock powers for a year and a day, and probably a bunch of cash and in general the kind of good things that follow having someone like Archwitch Weatherwax owe you favors.

You can field an army of (say) 20 of the best witches you have. And sometimes that's great, and sometimes you need them at their best. But it's often better to have an unending army of (say) 20 not-quite-as-badass warlocks, that you can simply replenish as needed.

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    $\begingroup$ It is hard to imagine a more un-Weatherwax-like approach to solving a problem. You are braver than me risking her wrath like that. $\endgroup$ – Martin Bonner supports Monica Aug 8 '18 at 14:11
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    $\begingroup$ Well, they didn't say which Weatherwax... $\endgroup$ – Stackstuck Aug 8 '18 at 19:38

The simplest answer to this is productivity.

Just because a witch has access to a specific amount of Mana, it doesn't mean that every spell that needs to be incanted requires that much Mana at once. Think of it like electrical engineering; you may have a 10 amp line (with a 10 amp fuse in it), but that doesn't mean you can only run one device off that line; if you have 3 machines, each of which draw 3 amps, you're good.

So, your witches are in the same boat. Creating their warlock may impede their peak load, but having a warlock available means that (assuming it's someone they trust) they can generate multiple spells at once because they (and their warlock) can operate in parallel.

You might actually find that the normal 'practice' would be to create a warlock at around 20% of Mana draw. That way, he or she can handle all the 'legwork' spells, all the light stuff without impeding the prime witch too much, and actually allowing her to focus on all the high value and more dangerous work directly. Also, this would really help with warlocks that turn on their witch; the warlocks don't have the capacity to beat the witch in a fair fight with magic.

Ultimately, it comes down to whether you want to spend a week doing something (most of which is mundane or boring work) or if you want to outsource the easy stuff to someone and get on with the interesting stuff directly, which you keep for yourself because your subordinate warlock doesn't have the capacity to do it anyway. Also, you'd probably find plenty of takers among the Muggle crowds, willing to do the legwork on grounds that it's better than no magic at all.

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    $\begingroup$ I'll add that if a witch is a healer, having multiple warlocks being able to heal many sick people works much faster/better than a single witch trying to run from door-to-door, trying to heal the same amount of people. The warlocks could take care of the routine stuff, like colds, plague, and gout, while the witch can come in for the big stuff, like cancer, AIDS, multiple sclerosis. The OP doesn't explain a time frame, so any of these could be plausible. Maybe cancer, etc. was discovered in the Middle Ages, due to witches? $\endgroup$ – computercarguy Aug 8 '18 at 13:38
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    $\begingroup$ @computercarguy - cancer was discovered by the Ancient Egyptians in this world. $\endgroup$ – Martin Bonner supports Monica Aug 8 '18 at 14:07
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    $\begingroup$ @MartinBonner, I guess I should have looked that up before I put my foot in my mouth. I made the all too common "modern life only" assumption. Sorry! I guess I should change my comment above to read "Maybe cures for cancer, etc. were discovered...". $\endgroup$ – computercarguy Aug 8 '18 at 18:59
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    $\begingroup$ This is the answer that came to mind when thinking of it in D&D action economy terms; investing a warlock and bringing him with you effectively doubles your casting speed. Sure, the split mana means you run out of mana twice as fast, but killing your enemy twice as fast means they have less time to damage you (which reduces the mana required for healing afterward). The only real negative is if the warlock betrays you and it is slow/impossible to recover the power from the warlock without killing them. (Edit: And checking comments, OP says it's slow, but not impossible, to revoke investiture) $\endgroup$ – ShadowRanger Aug 8 '18 at 20:01
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    $\begingroup$ Another (perhaps needless) analogy in CS: a witch is one thread/process on a duo-core machine. Why not create another thread of control that can do work in parallel while sharing the same address space. Yet another non-technical analogy: husband and wife share the same house & finances, but can do different work during the day. $\endgroup$ – flow2k Aug 9 '18 at 1:59

I can see a few different useful applications for a warlock, assuming smaller spells don't typically require substantial amounts of a witch's mana to be cast.

First, having a warlock means the witch can now cast two spells simultaneously, effectively doubling her casting speed. Should she find herself in a combat situation with another witch she will be able to fire two fireballs at the same time, or otherwise delegate defensive measures to her warlock while she focuses entirely on offense. The warlock uses her mana to block incoming projectiles while the witch launches attacks. The rival witch, while able to pull off much bigger spells, will be overwhelmed, as she won't be able to keep up with the casting speed of two individuals at once.

Secondly, having a warlock means the witch need not be present in order to use her magic. A witch could easily send her warlock to another location to carry out whatever spells she needs doing without putting herself at risk. Sure, she may be less powerful now, but she can be in a safe location where she isn't likely to be targeted while still exerting her influence through her warlock. If the warlock dies it's not much of an issue for the witch as she gets her mana back anyway and can just create a new warlock later.

Thirdly, if there is no way to determine who is a warlock and who is a witch, the witch could use the warlock as a proxy without revealing her own identity. The enemy may kill the warlock thinking they killed the witch and lose her trail, or they might not be able to figure out which witch was empowering the warlock in the first place. The witch can effectively act without repercussion until her enemies discover her plot.

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    $\begingroup$ I think the second and third points here are the biggest factors. The fact that the death of a warlock would not cause the witch to lose her power (in fact, it would return to her) would be a driver to use warlocks for risk mitigation. If, as you say, the witch's identity could not be discerned readily through the warlock (which I believe is an assumption, not verified by the OP), this just serves to further make risk mitigation through proxy the primary driver. $\endgroup$ – oliver-clare Aug 8 '18 at 8:03
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    $\begingroup$ Careful though with overusing the second point! Capturing the warlock without killing and locking away would weaken the witch for prolonged time or even permanently. $\endgroup$ – wondra Aug 9 '18 at 7:26
  • $\begingroup$ @wondra Good point! Hmm! Perhaps warlocks could be conditioned to take suicide pills to prevent this from happening, although clearly not a 100% guarantee they won't be captured and incapacitated as you suggest. $\endgroup$ – oliver-clare Aug 10 '18 at 13:16
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    $\begingroup$ (A witch can revoke the connection between her and the warlock with an equally advanced, complex spell without him being present.) - doesn't matter if warlock is captured, as long as witch figures it out eventually. $\endgroup$ – Jeutnarg Aug 10 '18 at 14:29

Could love be a factor?

The sharing of power with another would almost certainly create a lasting bond between the two. A connection that goes deeper than the mere practical exchange of power. It might be possible for one to have some sensations or feel limited emotions of the other through the bond, which could strengthen the longer the bond is held.

After all, witches are still human and still feel that need to be with another. And the ancient ritual is not undertaken lightly. The witch must give a part of herself to the warlock.

Should the warlock die, the witch would feel this loss instantly in the regaining of her power. Similarly, should the witch die, the warlock would feel the sudden emptiness as their source of power dies with her. Such intimate knowledge of another could only serve to strengthen a bond between two people.

EDIT: As suggested by @T. Sar in the comments, a common trope is that magic users age differently* to non-magic users, such that both the witch and warlock could end up with longer lives. This would support the love theory in so far as the magically bonded partners would be able to age at similar rates (assuming the sharing of power would also share that ability and assuming the magic users in this world age differently), thus having more time to spend with each-other.

*Lord of the Rings, Dresden Files, Harry Potter and I'm sure many others.

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    $\begingroup$ You could add that, if magic causes longevity, creating a warlock would ensure that you have your husband for quite some time. $\endgroup$ – T. Sar Aug 8 '18 at 12:09
  • $\begingroup$ @T.Sar I could indeed! I was wary of going too far off-piste from the OP's original rules. Good call though, definitely supports the love theory. $\endgroup$ – oliver-clare Aug 8 '18 at 13:00
  • $\begingroup$ I could see this also working for a witch's male child $\endgroup$ – Reed Aug 8 '18 at 13:04
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    $\begingroup$ @Reed I think that, in the case of a child, the focus will probably be in marrying the kid to a witch instead of the mother making him a warlock herself. This could create all sorts of intrigue - lesser witches marrying with the sons of more powerful witches to gain favor, effectively turning the court mechanics of medieval europe upside down. $\endgroup$ – T. Sar Aug 8 '18 at 15:12
  • $\begingroup$ @T.Sar I've added your suggestion as I think it's a great fit for this theory and it's not a big stretch to imagine that magic users age differently. $\endgroup$ – oliver-clare Aug 8 '18 at 16:25

Witches need to sleep or conduct rituals that cannot be interrupted.

Warlocks are the guards they need to protect them when they cannot protect themselves.

The lost mana isn't really an issue as it's returned when the warlock dies so a suicide run against an enemy is a great way to get your power back and weaken an enemy at the same time.


Increasing the chance of magical female offspring

You could make it so that magic is inherited via the X chromosome and true permanent magic users must have two, hence be women. Perhaps the ritual transmitting magic abilities temporarily affects the male‘s X chromosome, making it certainly carry the magic gene. Then any female offspring of witch and warlock would be a guaranteed witch! You could even go further and say that male children from such a union make very good potential warlocks as they have f.e. one unexpressed magic gene.

I could see, why both witch and warlock would want to ensure their offspring are magic users...

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    $\begingroup$ I wouldn't go into the genetics of it. I think it's better to leave this type of mechanism undefined. More like, "Odds of a child being a witch, born to non-magic parents<1%, born to witch~20%, born to warlock~10%, born to witch and warlock~50%" They know the probabilities, but maybe not the "why". $\endgroup$ – Kyle A Aug 9 '18 at 15:40
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    $\begingroup$ @KyleA it was meant as a model for the world building author. No need to divulge it to the reader ;) $\endgroup$ – Ludi Aug 10 '18 at 6:53


If a single warlock can have multiple witches that have bound him you can create super powerful warlocks that can do stuff no single witch could ever hope to do.

It's a requirement to bring a child to term

An unbound witch' mana is incompatible with pregnancy. A warlock siphoning off some of it calms the mana down enough that the fetus can survive until birth.

As a variation the physiological changes during pregnancy can make using magic impossible and the warlock provides a means to still use magic during pregnancy.

This makes the warlock ritual a lot more like marriage.

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    $\begingroup$ That coven idea is interesting. If a bunch of weaker witches don't like getting bossed around by a stronger witch, they can band together and make a strong warlock to challenge her. $\endgroup$ – eyeballfrog Aug 8 '18 at 22:37
  • $\begingroup$ Given Incognito's other questions about this world, it could be a requirement to bring a familiar to term. $\endgroup$ – No Name Dec 19 '18 at 23:57

Advancement as an incentive

"Wychguild Incovenated is the world's top private magic contractor. At Wychguild we believe in building a better, more meritocratic society and seek to lead by example. That's why we offer our employees the chance to advance themselves and the world through scholarships and magi-sharing."

-Esmerelda Weatherwax, spokeswoman for the Wychguild Weathertop Department

Delegation of responsibility

The ability to share a portion of their magical power(I assume the witch can control the amount given out) improves productivity as mentioned by others by allowing witches to increase their presence through proxies. Witches can assign work that is not worth their time to warlocks. It also allows for greater gradation of response in fields where there is useful. For instance, in law enforcement warlocks could be the equivalent of beat cops and witches could be equivalent to SWAT.

Separation of powers (in multiple senses of the word)

Reducing the power of individual witches can be a part of the constitutional checks and balances that ensure that competition within society remains peaceful and constructive. Greater concentration of magical power implies greater concentration of authority, making it easier for individual or small groups of rogue witches to cause unrest or in extreme cases, civil war.

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    $\begingroup$ Why do people keep risking the wrath of Esme?! $\endgroup$ – Stackstuck Aug 8 '18 at 19:38
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    $\begingroup$ @Stackstuck It's amazing what you can convince people to do with headology $\endgroup$ – nullpointer Aug 10 '18 at 8:36

Two persons are better than one, especially when one is dispensable

  • Maybe some special spells need special rituals or casting that require two witches to cast it. But if you don't have another witch friend, you could make a warlock and together cast it.
  • Warlocks are dispensable. If a warlock dies, you just need to make another. You can send your warlock to dangerous missions because if it dies, it won't be a huge problem finding another.
    If your question now if, how/where can I find and convince a person to be my warlock, it's quite easy to answer:
    • Power. You lend to your warlock the 50% of your power, so he is able to cast magic. If he works for you, you will let him use magic at will in his free time, everybody wants to be special and do magic, someones are ready to sacrifice for it. Maybe, you could send your warlock on a dangerous mission, and if he survives you will let him "free" for holidays for some months, time where he can use it's magic for himself. Maybe, being a warlock means age slower...
    • Fame. I don't know if in your world warlocks and witches are famous, but if that is true, any person with a high ambition would love to be your famous warlock able to cast magic.
    • Money. If witches are able to cast magic it's quite probable they may have a lot of money. You could hire your warlock as a magical mercenary.
  • Youngness: Witches transfer 50% of the power to the warlock... but nobody knows that warlocks without noticing transfer the same amount in lifeforce to the witches. That is how witches are always young an live forever.

Force Multiplication

If I need a couch carried downstairs, I would rather have the help of a friend than I would two or even three times my normal strength.

For many tasks, having multiple people of weaker strength is far more effective than one stronger person.


Because mana is destructive

Harnessing and controlling mana is taxing, both on the body and the mind. It starts eating away at you, especially when it's not being used. And for the most part, you don't need to cast powerful spells in your everyday life. So you siphon off a portion to someone you trust, to safeguard your own health.

Because some spells are too complex

Some spells require multiple people to cast. One to provide a some base level of magical current for the other to do the complex casting with, for example. Partnering up with another witch is riskier than having a warlock that's dependant on your magical ability.

Because being too powerful is a risk

Other witches can detect your magical power. They may see you as a challenge or a rival. Witch hunters, a sect of crazed terrorists, go around killing off powerful witches in secret. Ordinary folk are superstitious and are, at best, unnerved by your presence. Whatever the reason, casually pointing the magical equivalent of an AK-47 at random people isn't for you. So you take the target off your back and plaster it on someone else's.


Sorry to be late to the party, but this question got my mind working, so here is everything I could think up. Hopefully it's of some use.

Magic as a mundane force multiplier Suppose the warlocks are really good at some mundane skill. Giving them magic - especially if the magic didn't require years of study and practice since that would have been done by the witch - would make them that much better. Examples: Commandos who can infiltrate enemy lines, sabotage equipment, and carry out assassinations with strength magic or stealth magic / veterinarians who can speak to animals / day traders with minor precognition.

Team spells/rituals Many real world artisans work in teams, with one master craftsman and some assistants. Maybe magic is similar with some spells and rituals requiring multiple casters. The warlocks don't have to be masters, just proficient enough to do their part. Maybe everyone casting the spell has to have magic from the same source.

Protection against aging or disease Maybe men and/or women die young if they don't transfer magic. Worse yet, maybe they come down with a debilitating degenerative disease, like a magic Alzheimers or Parkinsons. Maybe without a transfer their mind eventually gets possessed by demons, spirts, alien intelligences, or magic itself.

Palace intrigue The royal family has two daughters, and of course the eldest one is going to get the throne. The younger daughter, or her allies, finds Joe Conman off the street and turns him into a warlock. Using his new magic to buff his appearance and charisma he becomes Courtesan McStudly. All he needs now are some official documents and an expense account and he's off to seduce the eldest. Options include making her elope with him, getting her pregnant, converting her to a heretical religion, luring her into a dark ally and stabbing her - whatever works in your world to disqualify her from the throne.

Covert operations At 10 am a warlock stealthily casts a spell causing a guild building to explode killing everyone inside. At 10:05 am, the witch who created the warlock reverses the transfer erasing all traces of her magic from him. The city investigators immediately try to track the magic to it's caster but they can't (the witch is in a different city, the warlock has no trace of magic on him), so now the only way to find the culprit is good old fashioned investigative work.

The transfer isn't unidirectional Maybe the warlock gets magic, but the witch gets access to something of his. His knowledge and skills? His senses? Maybe a witch can transfer fractional percentages of her mana into dozens of individuals. So the entire palace guard could be linked to a witch allowing her to see everything that is going on and help coordinate defenses.

Microtransfers Continuing the idea from above - giving some guy 0.1% of your power in exchange for access to his sight or hearing would be very useful. And who says the guy needed to volunteer. Get some enemy soldiers or dignitaries drunk, do the ritual, then sit back and take notes as they reveal the layout of the camp, their battle plans, their negotiation strategy, and everything else.

Puppets Maybe a suitably powerful witch can usurp the mind of the warlock and make him a puppet. Combine with forced transfer for tons of fun. Maybe trigger a self destruct spell and turn the unwitting warlock into a magic IED. Just one more way to get rid of that elder daughter in line for the throne.

Power transfer What if the witch creates a warlock and then has him gather additional mana and transfer it back to her via the connection.

Area of effect Create four warlocks and station them at the cardinal points of a city or castle. Then the witch can create a shield around the boarder of the square. Or maybe drop a plague inside the square. Or maybe the warlocks can function like pylons in Starcraft allowing other magical effects to happen within a certain radius of them.

The power of love Maybe a power transfer is like a wedding band and marks the couple with a visible brand (like a Bindi or something). This is necessary for the marriage to be officially recognized by the society. Combine with higher chance of magical children, or the ability to have children at all, as described by other posters.

Hive mind Not just a power transfer but the option to join consciousness as well. Maybe leads to better problem solving, faster learning and mastery, synchronized combat tactics, and the risk that the witch and warlock lose their individual identity.

Sacrificial spells Maybe magic is so powerful (or tainted by evil, or whatever) that many spells require the caster to sacrifice themselves or parts of themselves (why else would you have 2 kidneys?). Witches create warlocks to soak the damage. When they die, just make another. Combine with unwitting warlocks for a real dark scenario.

Releasing hidden power Some men harbor insane magical energy inside them, but it can't be used unless a witch transfers a certain amount of her power for a certain period of time. Maybe if Joe Accountant gets a 20% transfer for a year he gains the ability to Hulk out and smash his way through an enemy fortification.

Warlocks protect the witch (variant of some of the above) The universe itself doesn't like magic and actively seeks to punish witches for using magic. For some reason warlocks are immune to this and confer that immunity onto the witch.

Warlocks unlock the witch's full potential Although she gives gives some of her magic power to the warlock, the bond allows the witch access to some greater knowledge or power. Maybe witches can only cast Yin magic unless they have a warlock, then they get access to Yang type magic. Alternatively, only Warlocks can cast Yang magic, so if the witch's ritual needs Yang type magic to function she needs a warlock.

Magic affinities Variant on the above. Maybe a given magic user can only access a certain number of magic forms. Saraphina the witch is skilled in water magic and necromancy, and that's it. If she wants to use flame magic she needs to find a guy who has an affinity for fire. Not all guys do, so she has to search, bargain, bribe, seduce, and outcompete her rivals. Maybe some rarely occurring affinities lead to high status guys. If you're the only guy in the kingdom with access to earth magic, the ladies will literally be fighting over you. Combine with palace intrigue above.

Men without a connection become monsters (variant on some the above) After a certain amount of time, men not connected to a witch become malevolent and powerful monsters. Maybe they're scheming and cunning, or maybe they just rage out and start indiscriminately destroying things. Either way, they are a major threat. Now society has to decide whether to wait for them to transform and fight them, or encourage warlocks to be created (via bribery, threats, etc).

Magic as a drug Having magic flow through your body is addictive and messes with people the same as drugs (hallucinogens, stimulants, depressants, or effect varies with the person). Men pay women to transfer power to them for a period of time which gives them a magic high. Maybe women need to dump some magic energy onto men in order to reduce the psychological effects of having that much magic power within themselves. Lots of questions about how this society holds itself together. Maybe the drug effects only affect a subset of the population. Maybe warlock creation is mandated to occur when women are young and the drug effects haven't kicked in. Maybe there is some kind of twisted 2 child rule where each family has to have a boy and a girl. Or all births are twins (one male and one female).

I think I'm out of ideas for now. This was a very fun exercise.


The ritual acts as a contract between the witch and the warlock

When the witch casts the ritual, she can make a magically enforced contract that both memebers would have to acknolledge and willingly agree to. However, they would not have to understand, so once the items on the contract are agreed to, either party can lie to each other. The contract requires both parties to do their part, as it is magically enforced.

Lure a powerful figure from the town into your witch hut, and show them your manipulation magic, and offer that they can gain power by using it on other important figures in the town. Then say that you don't want the magic used against you, so how and when the magic is used must not be against you. Then a assure the person you are tricking that these terms do not allow for manipulation of him. If the person is nervous still, offer them a way out, you can get out of the contract if you return the magic within a month. They will ask how, and just tell them that they should come back to your hut. Teach them the spell that they use to manipulate.

For the first month, show them how advantageous your power is to them, then after that, force them to do magic to get the t nearby town to do what you want. When = you must do magic now/you must not do magic now, my plan fails, which is against me. How: you must use your magic in this way, or may plan is ruined. Use as scrying ball to see the response of the people that were manipulated so you know how to manipulate them more out of their doubt if necessary.

Congratulations, you just gained control of a town!


Faster Advancement

If, you can increase your magic power by training, then having a warlock, who is also increasing his power (borrowed from you), then your magic improves faster. Even if the warlock won't improve as fast as you, every little bit helps. Although the author never mentioned if the base amount of mana can be increased...

Everything else has been said... politics, higher chance of magical children, love bond, double casting speeds, bodyguards...


Magical power summator

A witch can have only one warlock, but a warlock can have more witches form which to draw power. Let's assume a group of four witches want to cast a very powerful spell to break a ancient magical barrier that can only be cast with 1000 mana and kills the caster. But they only have 500 mana each. They cast a mind control spell on an unsuspecting human and each make him their warlock with 50% of their power. The warlock is forced to cast the spell, consuming all his mana and killing him. The barrier is removed and there are no lose ends.

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I like to add that the warlock might bring other abilities to the table, an 80 year old witch might be a powerfull spellcaster but when you need a spellcaster on a battlefield properly the young knight with half of the magic power is properly the better choiche. Especially when the witch still can work at another place, maybe as tactical advisor in a far away castle or as a medic close to the battlefield. And as mentioned if the 'war Warlock' dies, which shouldn't be that unlikely the magic power can be transfered to another person.

I believe you can made up thousand of others scenarios, where the skills or physicality of another person are necessary that a spell is usefull. For example opening a door with magic won't help you much at home.

Another reason to transfer magic, is that you ain't expect a man to have magic powers so that this might be helpful to infiltrate some places with a spellcaster.


Division of labor.

There are some spells that only warlocks can cast, and some spells that only witches can cast.

Do write the book so that both sets of spells are crucial at some point.


They can become useful servants, plus they would retain their individuality. A warlock, in your tale, could travel to other places and take actions in the witch's place. Or maybe she would be physically incapacitated and the warlock could do lesser magic works untill she is fully healed. It sure has lots of drawbacks but sometimes two heads think better than just one. Maybe a Warlock would have access to more practical knowledge and it could help the witch in more ways we could imagine


What if the witches can stack the mana given to a single Warlock. Like 5 witches on the same Warlock. Could he become a super weapon. Or even a bomb because he is overwhelmed with mana...


It is essentially a pragmatic decision, or, perhaps, an economic transaction.

The witch gets an extra pair of hands. The warlock could function as a bodyguard, an assistant, a representative, a spy, or all of these things. Due to the magic, he is more effective at all of these roles; he also has a strong incentive not to betray his patron.

In return, the warlock gains the ability to use magic, and the understanding that he can use it for his own purposes at least some of the time.

You could have a variety of social customs around this arrangement. In modern times, several professions have special rules that affect how practitioners behave. Lawyers, doctors, therapists, and engineers often have codes of conduct governing interactions in the workplace, out in public, and in the presence of other practitioners.


Something I don't think anyone pointed out is that the Witch is giving magic to the man, which transforms him into a warlock. In other words, it's possible the magic becomes his!

I would suggest in this case that the magical factors that make a witch powerful be mental and spiritual (sense of self, willpower, cognitive ability, focus, and so on) and are the same for the warlocks, which means the warlock permanently gains powers of his own.

In other words, the man becomes a caster, and because the witch and warlock is magically linked, this causes the power of both to increase. Let's say the Warlock's power level is 5 out of 10, whereas the Witch's is 9 out of 10. The Warlock's newfound power automatically would change to 45 out of 50, while the Witch's power would become 45 as well.

In other words, this wouldn't make them weaker, it would make them stronger, but what if something goes wrong and the warlock betrays them? What's the catch?

I would suggest that due to the magic being spiritually powered, a Witch and Warlock cannot harm each other, as they essentially become an extension of one's own self. As for catches, take your pick:

  1. The Witch and Warlock's very lifeforces are bound-this makes the two harder to kill, as they share life force, but if one of them dies, both are dead! This makes it possible for one overwhelming attack to kill the Warlock on the battlefield, and then the Witch, who's taken a well-deserved break miles away, suddenly dies.

  2. They're emotionally/mentally bound-When you really want to do something, it's hard to keep yourself from doing that thing. The same would apply to Witches and Warlocks-let's say the Witch really wants to have revenge on this one guy, a noble with reputation. The Warlock normally wouldn't even consider taking part in a revenge plot on a rich, powerful man, but he feels the Witch's desire in his own heart and thus takes part in her internal struggle.

Appealing to emotion works for ads, it works for politicians, it works for manipulators everywhere. But instead of merely trying to persuade someone to feel a certain way, the partner is making their counterpart feel as they do, whether they want to or not. This is going to extremely effective, but also a major disadvantage.

Additionally (or alternatively), the minds of a Witch and Warlock may be open to each other. In other words, you can't keep secrets from your partner. The lack of privacy will come with extreme consequences of its very own....

  1. One and Done-A Witch can only be bound to one warlock, and vice versa. Furthermore, she can't unlink the Warlock without due cause and/or his free will (he must want to unlink). Otherwise, the Witch is reduced to the power level she was born at, literally being reduced to the power of an infant. Alternatively, her power is decreased by the power level of the Warlock she was linked to (for the above example, that would leave the Witch with a power level of 2 out of 10-hardly respectable!) Another option is that unlinking without both parties consenting or due cause not only reduces her power but leaves the Witch with an emotional void, a longing for a male connection. This may not seem like a real drawback. Wrong, the longing is so extreme that the Witch has to seek out a male to connect with.

This could lead to a crazed stalker and/or ex(girlfriend or witch? Perhaps one term has the meaning of both ex-girlfriend and ex-witch?), a witch who'll date and/or flirt with anyone who crosses her path, or possibly worst of all, a witch who goes looking for guys in bars (a very very bad idea!)

In other words, this means she can't just cast a Warlock aside when a better potential Warlock comes along (essentially using him) without leaving herself vulnerable to being used herself.

It's possible that one of the three options in Category 3 above could happen upon one member of the Witch/Warlock pair dying, which would be a huge drawback in and of itself. This would result in a Witch doing everything in her power to keep her Warlock alive, save dying herself because that would potentially ruin his life! And if he dies, her life could very well be ruined!

This would be a very strong incentive to keep mages off the battlefield, and could open up all kind of story opportunities for you.

  • $\begingroup$ Okay, I'd like an explanation for the downvote. What did I do wrong? $\endgroup$ – Alendyias Dec 19 '20 at 6:20

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