A Corruptor (kor-rup-tor) is a Whisper that has gained material form in our world, typically through Scarring. Corruptors can have their own form (more rare) or borrow one, such as an object, animal or human that embodies the nature of the Whisper. A Corruptor has three key attributes: autonomy, freedom, and willpower. It has both ancient wisdom but also is akin to a newborn baby with a rush of new senses and powers and limitations in our world. These Corruptors take nearly endless forms and have been known by many names across the history of our world.
Through centuries of observations, we now understand that a Corruptor is neither good nor evil when it enters our world and takes form. It is, like all new beings, trying to make sense of its new life. Brand new Corruptors have a clean slate, or “tabula rasa.” Corruptors, even ones who have been to our world and have been banished back to the Realm of Whispers, are adjusting to their newfound power, will, influence, and most importantly, identity. New corruptors have just gone from only a vague notion of being a self, and then suddenly presented with the separation from everything around them and are oftentimes experience a period of disorientation. Corruptors who have been repeatedly banished and re-entered our world have a much stronger identity and will adjust to our world with greater predictability and facility.
Although the word for an entity from Psythyros (also known as The Whisper Realm) with material form is “Corruptor,” that simply means that it does not belong in our world, not that all Corruptors have bad intentions. The word “Corruptor” is a category created by the Magimundi, in an attempt to understand and distinguish them from other entities. Often, they are known by titles and nicknames that do not include the word “Corruptor” itself. There are a number of benevolent Corruptors permitted to continue to reside in our world. These range from mildly annoying (The Laughing Gremlin of Virginia Isle) to innocuous (Rock Sprites of eastern Thunderbird Province), to friendly (the 6-legged white stag of Mount Greylock). Benevolent Corruptors seem to seek to aid or have positive influence on the entities and environments they interact with. This could, of course, be our own attribution of ethics and morals on an extraplanar entity, but nevertheless, so-called benevolent Corruptors are much more tolerated and even defended by Wizards.
Banishing a Corruptor back to the Psythyros is possible. The difficulty of banishing a Corruptor usually depends on how it got to our realm originally. A Corruptor summoned in a properly controlled circle does not have full presence in our world; it is always tethered to the Whisper Realm, like an animal on a leash. When the summoning is finished, the connection is severed, though a degree of scarring remains from the hole formed between our world and The Whisper Realm. The longer the summoning lasts, the greater the scarring, and an improperly closed ritual summoning circle creates a constant connection to the Whisper Realm, enabling an even wider scarring. Thus circle-summoned beings must be handled with great care and for only as much time as necessary. A Corruptor who enters our world unbidden through a scarring, or as a stowaway on another summoning, will not be tethered, and thus behave like an unleashed and uncontrolled animal. An untethered Corruptor requires a new Scarring to open a route for it back to The Whisper Realm. Generally, Corruptors are banished back to Psythyros in this way. However, an untethered Corruptor can be slain; its slaying takes enormous power and will leave a lingering affect in our world that takes a long time to mend, if ever.
For many magical beings, such as many Miroven, names hold power- Corruptors are no exception. Every Corruptor has a name, which it holds in high regard. Because identity is only gained by entering our world, it is dear to that being. It may be open with its name, or it may keep it a secret. Names are sometimes given to Corruptors by mages and wizards. Learning the name of (or naming) the Corruptor allows a wizard or mage to gain a Corruptor’s attention, respect, or ire; it depends on the nature of that Corruptor how it reacts to its name. Some wizards have used a Corruptor’s name to issue a direct challenge. The nature of the challenge will vary depending on the Corruptor. In the case of Benevolent Corruptors, knowing its name may be used in soliciting the Corruptor’s aid. A banished Corruptor loses that identity upon returning to the Whisper Realm, where it may be combined, merged, and reformed amid the chaos. However, a memory or echo of the name remains, and in many cases, a returned Corruptor can be re-summoned through the use of the name they were known by in our world. The more powerful the Corruptor and the more often it has been summoned, the stronger of a memory of its identity it retains.
There are many kinds of Corruptors that are known and have been studied. While this is by no means an exhaustive list, some common ones are:
Corruptors come to our world from Psythyros, and thusly can be found throughout the world, but in more abundance where powerful or uncontrolled magic has been used, as these create more significant scarring between our world and theirs.
It is difficult to study the biology of a Corruptor, however it appears to be that their physical state of being exists complimentarily to their purpose or intent, though oftentimes they will assume the shape of a person or thing that is readily available to them. A Time Corruptor may appear to look like an animated clock, an Elemental Corruptor of fire might look like a flaming human figure, or even a levitating fireball.
Corruptors seem to humans as immortal, but in actuality they live very long lives of thousands, or even tens of thousands of years (the exception are Time Corruptors, see above). This was learned through conversations with the Reflecting Pool of Rumination, whose location is a guarded secret of the Council of Five and a handful of trusted researchers.
While Corruptors are driven to their intent, or purpose- it is unclear if they gain sustenance from them or if it is merely due to their intense desire that they seek these things out.
Because of the variable nature of their form, it is difficult to address corruptors as a whole for their value as magical components. Despite many prior attempts by ambitious mages and Wizards, Corruptors do not make good familiars. Whispers seek out objects and/or people similar to its nature. They will not bond with things that contradict their nature. A Pride Whisper will not become a Pride Corruptor with a person who is very humble. A Whisper whose nature is similar to water will not seek to appear in stone tower.
Corruptors are immune to most damage, physical or magical, except that which directly contradicts their nature (e.g. a fire Corruptor is weak to ice, though it will take more than cold, even extreme cold to slay it). Thus, discovering the nature of a Corruptor is of utmost importance, and powerful Corruptors will not be forthcoming with that information, and will seek to confuse, contradict, and lie in order to protect it. Destroying the physical form of a Corruptor generally does not end its life. One’s best strategy is to create a controlled Scarring through a summoning circle, steer the Corruptor back to the Whisper Realm, and close, ward, or bind the Scarring to prevent its return. As it will latch onto anything similar to its nature, one must rid the surrounding area of anything that resembles it.