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A Witch, though typically considered female in most folklore, can be either a man or woman. A Witch is a user of witchcraft, an ancient and volatile form of Magic, one of Demonic origin. Witches are considered malicious and sinister beings, as they have oftentimes been corrupted by Demonic influences.
A Witch can gain their powers through one of two ways. Witches can be born from at least one Demon parent, known as Cambions. Having been born with an innate attunement to witchcraft, these Witches are typically considered to be the most powerful of their kind.
The second method is to perform the Ritual of Debasement. An old and powerful spell, a Witch is born when they have completed the Ritual and altered both their spirit and physical self. This is the most common method of becoming a Witch, as many mortals are tempted into such taboo acts by Demons seeking to bolster their own strength.
While Mages who have refused to join the Exorcists are also called Witches, they are not always users of witchcraft. While every Witch is a Mage, not every Mage is a Witch.
Magic and Witchcraft
While it is said a Mage uses Magic, a Witch uses witchcraft. Witchcraft draws upon the darker Essence of the world, the latent emotions of rage, despair and avarice. Witchcraft is incredibly potent, involving many high-level spells with devastating effects. The dark Essence necessary to fuel such spells is very potent but extremely unstable and dangerous to channel.
The use of Witchcraft, as powerful as it is, can lead to many complications. A spell that backfires can be fatal, leaving little room for error. Channeling the dark Essence is also incredibly destructive to the mortal body. As such, many Witches must also sustain themselves through life-stealing or leeching rituals. For Unari, she came to realize that her lifespan was being stolen away with each spell she cast. She came to realize that by becoming a Demon, she could mitigate the effects of channeling dark Essence. Only when she became a Curse did she realize that the harmful effects were completely neutralized, but at a severe cost.
Killing a Witch
Witches are still mortals to a degree. However, they are particularly difficult to defeat due to the wide variety of powers and abilities they possess. To combat Witches, Exorcists often employ the use of enchanted weapons, ammunition created from silver or iron and engraved with spells and runes. The most commonly used form of ammunition is one that causes a Witches Essence to be drained or depleted, known as Silencing. Silencing a Witch effectively prevents them from casting spells. Once a Witch has been sufficiently weakened, they can be killed like any other mortal. Of course, that is assuming the Exorcist has destroyed their Demonic Familiar first.