This week for Magic Mondays we bring you another array that is ubiquitous and yet invisible.

This week we show you the Firestarter array.

Notation: Create and Sustain a Fire if Wood is not present and Contain that Fire to the boundary of the array.

Description: A wise man once said that the greatest of magics could be found in the most mundane aspects of life and, like most idioms and sayings, it is truer than we would like to think. One could talk all day about the immeasurable work that goes into hand crafting a single glass, or all the inventions that were needed before our homes were so comfortably heated that we never give it a second’s thought. But this is about arrays, not engineering, so let’s take for example the Firestarter array.

There is not a single gentleman in Middelburg that has a Firestarter array more than a minute’s frantic search away from him. Most men keep one tidily tucked away in a pocket and ask any barkeep, or even a priest and they would be quick to produce one. This is not because most men in Middelburg are raving arsonists, but rather that the Firestarter array is used to light pipes, hookahs, candles and even a stubborn hearth or two.

A firestarter, the contraption not the array, is a small wooden cylinder with hinged wooden cap that can be tightly closed. On top of the cylinder, and enclosed by the cap, is the Firestarter array. Needless to say, that is all there is to this array. Flick open the cap, and the array is activated, creating a small and manageable flame. Close the cap and the presence of the wood will deactivate the array. Because of this If-Then statement, the array absorbs energy throughout the day while it is not in use and then expends it when it is. The movement inside a man’s pocket is more than enough to charge an array that you only need for a few seconds at a time.

Of course, a firestarter can be made of many materials and the wealthier a man becomes, the richer his firestarter. When this is the case, the Wood rune in the centre is simply replaced by whatever material the firestarter’s cap is made from.

If you want to get more arrays, check out our Journal of Array Design over on DriveThruRPG, now also available as a deck of magic cards.

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