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Cosmere Catalog #4.2: Magic System of Cosmere - Komashi & Canticle

Read Time: 7 minutes
Published On: March 25, 2024
Cosmere Catalog #4.2

Cosmere Catalog is a series of articles that will delve deep into the inner workings of Cosmere and all the books in this shared universe. This is part 2 of the 4th guide on the Cosmere Catalog.

Cosmere Catalog #1: A visual guide to Cosmere books

Cosmere Catalog #2: Planets in Cosmere and their mentions

Cosmere Catalog #3: Overarching Cosmere Physics & Mythology

Cosmere Catalog #4.1: Magic System of the Cosmere - Metalic Arts

Cosmere Catalog #4.2: Magic System of Cosmere - Komashi & Canticle

Komashi: A World of Contrasts

Torio City: From Majesty to Decay

Torio City, once the vibrant heart of the Torio kingdom on Komashi, now lies in ruins, a poignant reminder of its former glory. Its majestic structures, crafted from enduring stone and crowned with roofs of vivid red, once stood as symbols of prosperity and power. Streets adorned with verdant trees, bubbling fountains, and imposing dragon sculptures painted a picture of serenity and grandeur.

However, the advent of the father machine heralded a dark chapter in Torio City's history. With its activation came the consumption of its inhabitants, plunging the city into desolation. Today, its crumbling remnants stretch across the landscape, a haunting testament to the destructive power of unchecked ambition.

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Kilahito: A Beacon of Modernity

In stark contrast to the ancient ruins of Torio City, Kilahito emerges as a beacon of progress and innovation on Komashi. Its skyline, illuminated by vibrant cyan and magenta lines, pulsates with the energy of modernity. Despite the perpetual twilight cast by the planet's shroud, Kilahito thrives, fueled by the relentless pursuit of technological advancement.

From sleek skyscrapers to bustling streets teeming with life, Kilahito embodies the spirit of resilience amidst adversity. Powered by the luminous Hion Lines that crisscross the cityscape, it stands as a testament to humanity's indomitable spirit in the face of darkness.

Hion Lines: The Lifelines of Komashi

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Hion Lines, ethereal bands of energy that course through the veins of Komashi, serve as the planet's lifelines, sustaining its inhabitants and powering its cities. These radiant conduits, varying in thickness and intensity, represent the boundless potential of investiture on Komashi.

In the battle against the encroaching darkness of the shroud, the Hion Lines stand as stalwart guardians, pushing back against oblivion with their radiant energy. Through cultivation and extension, they facilitate the expansion of civilization, forging connections between distant cities and enabling technological progress.

Functions of Hion Lines:

  • Power Generation: Harnessing the latent energy of the Hion Lines, Kilahito's inhabitants generate electricity to power their homes and industries.
  • Communication: High-frequency transmissions traverse the Hion Lines, facilitating seamless communication across vast distances.
  • Visualization: Utilizing the Hion Lines, advanced displays conjure vivid images and projections, enriching the lives of Kilahito's denizens.
  • Transportation: Maglev trains and spacecraft harness the energy of the Hion Lines for propulsion, enabling rapid transit across the city and beyond.

Yoki Hijo Magic

Yoki Hijo, or "Girls of Commanding Primal Spirit," are select individuals deeply connected to the planet's essence.

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Through the art of rock stacking and imbuing them with ancient spirits, these Chosen Ones harness their abilities to craft powerful tools. Only a few women possess the innate potential to become Yoki Hijo, with a strict limit of sixteen individuals at any given time, each chosen annually without regard to lineage.

Assigned a guardian known as a kihomaban, these Yoki Hijo undergo rigorous training to master their abilities. Their profound connection to raw investiture grants them powers comparable to the legendary Elantrians.


Nightmares, the harbingers of fear, are manifestations born from the souls consumed by the father machine. Feeding on the fears of slumbering individuals, these shadowy entities haunt the dreams of the inhabitants. Gradually taking on recognizable forms, they pose a significant threat to the populace.

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Stable Nightmares:

As Nightmares gain solidity through repeated feeding, they evolve into stable entities, exhibiting heightened danger. Elite painters, known as the Dreamwatch, are tasked with neutralizing these formidable adversaries by rendering them harmless through artistry.

The Role of Painters:

Operating under the Nightmare Division agency, painters defend the populace by depicting Nightmares as innocuous objects, effectively neutralizing their malevolent influence.

The Father Machine

An awakened construct (concept will be explained more on Bio-chromatic Magic System from Warbreaker in later cosmere catalog), the Father Machine was designed to harness Yoki Hijo magic to construct and power Kilahito's infrastructure. However, its activation proved catastrophic, resulting in the creation of the planet-shrouding veil and the transformation of Torio's inhabitants into Nightmares.

The machine was created by a team of scholars in Torio City University and was activated at the Festival of Reveal when Yumi was 19 years old. But due to some technical error, the machine started to draw human souls instead of the spirits of Hijo. It absorbed the souls of all inhabitants of Torio city and surrounding area creating the shroud.

Yoki Hijo souls were too powerful to be permanently destroyed. So the machine manipulated the memory of the women by setting up a single day in a loop to repeat endlessly for over 17 hundred years.

Canticle - A Burning Planet


Sunhearts, known as cinderhearts when corrupted, are a form of Investiture on Canticle. Sunhearts are special objects made from people who are transformed into power cells. This transformation happens when they're caught between the sun of Canticle and the planet's core.

How powerful a sunheart is depends on how invested the person was. But most of its power comes from the intense heat of Canticle's sun transferring to the planet's core, with the person's spirit resisting this energy.


Cinderhearts are special types of sunhearts that have been corrupted by a particular kind of magic. They're used to create Charred by stabbing someone in the chest with them.

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Once a cinderheart is inside a person, it starts heating up, causing sparks and flames to burst out, burning the body. The person's chest muscles, ribs, and heart burn away, leaving behind charred and blackened skin, with the cinderheart glowing at the center of the wound.

All Charred, those created by cinderhearts, are connected through their cinderhearts and can sense each other's presence. Cinderhearts consume the identity and connections of the Charred, similar to a creature called Yelig-Nar.

Cinderhearts look like glowing embers that give off a bright light. If the corruption is removed from them, they'll glow softly in a red-orange color. When a cinderheart burns something, it keeps smoldering for a long time


Charred are super strong, fast, and tough. They're really good in fights and are always ready to act. They can even use their cinderhearts to set off explosions. Their bodies are hotter than normal, so if you touch them, water can evaporate quickly.

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A big weakness of Charred is that they'll collapse if you take heat away from their bodies. They can't survive modern weapons like guns, and they're not strong enough to break chains. They can also die if they can't breathe.

Sunlit Ones are the leaders of the Charred. They're made by taking away some of the heat from the cinderheart right after it's put in. Sunlit Charred keep most of their skin and organs, and they still have their memories because the cinderheart doesn't burn away their soul completely. Sunlit Charred can absorb a lot more magic than regular Charred, but just being Charred doesn't mean you can do that.


The Chorus on Canticle refers to groups of trapped spirits, called shades, which are different from regular spirits. When people die on Canticle, they become shades, forming the Chorus. Parts of the Chorus are placed in special jars and taken to new settlements to help them grow.

Each settlement has its own Chorus kept in a glass container called a Reliquary. The Canticlites believe that those who die without becoming sunhearts join the Chorus. The Chorus holds the history of the people who came to the planet and helps sustain the inhabitants.

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