Rules of the Elements
The elements air, water, earth, fire and spirit were the basics of all things in the universe. Some people were born with extraordinary powers, while others had more modest powers that were useful in the everyday life of a person. While most people could control one or two elements, there had been moments in the turbulent history of the world when men and women with special powers had emerged.
For example, people whose element was air were good with arts and music while people controlling water were most likely sea farers or fishers. Earth provided people with powers of agriculture and closeness to nature and its metals and minerals. The element which had the most potential to good and bad was fire; it was the element of war, but also of passion and leadership. The element that was most revered was of spirit. The people, who were adepts of this element, were priests, priestesses and seers. A more rare manifestation of the spirit element was the so called spiritshifters. Spiritshifters were people who appeared to have the ability to obtain skills, abilities and knowledge of a specific art or profession for a period of time. They could perform everything with expertise that was usually only acquired by years and years of practice in the specific field.
Since spiritshifters weren’t very common, there is certain knowledge that is not widely known. When a spiritshifter acquired certain abilities and professions, they were calling for the spirits of the past and giving them the permission to enter their minds and body. The dangers with allowing a past spirit enter ones mind were many, you could become mad or be possessed by the spirit. While spirits were usually controllable by the spiritshifter, there were malicious spirits that would try to take over the mind of the spiritshifter and become them, if the spiritshifter had a weak mind. A spiritshifter had to have a strong will and strong mind to be able to control the spirit and not allow the spirit to take over the soul. While allowing the spirit to enter ones mind, the spiritshifter would only allow the spirit to occupy a fraction of the mind itself while holding the spirit in check. The spiritshifter would still talk with his or her words and his or hers own mind when holding a spirit. Depending on the situation and person, a spiritshifter would have a fixed number of spirits they could call for. In the past, some highly skilled spiritshifters had been able to call for half a dozen different spirits according to their needs.
Another interesting detail about the spiritshifter ability was that when a spirit was on the works, the body would metamorphose itself to look like the spirit. When the spirit left, the spiritshifter would go back to what they looked like in reality. Every spiritshifter would eventually develop his or her set of abilities and they would need to call spirits less and less.
The price for using the elemental power was physical exhaustion and drain of energy. When using any elemental ability, it was important for the person to take care of the body, mind and the soul with food and rest. Without energy, the power of the elements would be diminished if working at all. For the spiritshifters, holding a spirit in check would require little energy; only the strength of the mind and soul would be enough. But when the spirit started working with the skills and abilities, it would cost the same as if the spiritshifter would be working on those naturally.