Black Dahlia

A black dahlia, the Night World symbol for witches

Witches have an innate ability to draw on their inner strength to affect magic through spells and chants. Enchantments are often produced with simple and intense focus, but many are accompanied by fire, a complicated assortment of ingredients, and a physical representation of those to be changed by the charm. Members of this clan can call upon Hecate, the first and most powerful witch, for power. They can also call upon their own power as daughters and sons of Hellewise when casting spells, as demonstrated by Thea in Spellbinder.

Some witches also have prophetic visions - either brief glimpses into the future or puzzling revelations that must be unraveled with careful study. Witches who have these tendencies are usually unable to guide or extend their visions, but as this power is rare, prophetic witches are revered and hold a distinctive place in the hierarchy.

This clan is a matrilineal society that celebrates women, and the most powerful witches are the Crone, the Mother, and the Maiden. The witches with these titles have demonstrated their awesome powers for enacting spells and witnessing visions. Witches age like humans with regard to physical appearance and life span, so the Maiden is expected to one day become the Mother, then the Crone. The Crone is the leader of the Inner Circle, a group akin to the Vampire's Elder Council.

The Inner Circle is a governing body composed of nine of the most powerful in the Night World. As Thea describes with awe, "These people were the witch geniuses, the prodigies and the sages, the farseers, the teachers, the policy-makers." Despite the matriarchal emphasis of this clan, the Circle consists of both women and men. In addition to Grandma Harman, the Crone, Mother Cybele, the Mother, and Aradia, the Maiden, the other members of the Circle are Rhys, Belfana, Old Bob, Ursula, and Nana Buruku.

The rest of the witches in the Night World divide themselves between those who practise moderate magic, Circle Twilight, and those who practice the darkest magic, Circle Midnight. All of the Circles mark themselves with the sign of the black dahlia and are sensitive to iron. And all witches can communicate telepathically among themselves.

Psychics are a subgroup of witches whose powers lie dormant, waiting to be discovered. Psychics have been raised outside of the Night World and are ignorant of their legacy. Some psychics, like Poppy North and Gillian Lennox, find their way into the Night World fold by accident. Others, like Gary Fargeon and Iliana Dominick, are sought out by their clan - traced through family and welcomed to their birthright. But some, having only moderate powers or suppressing their talents for fear of being ostracised by their human peers, never connect with the Night World.

Notable WitchesEdit

  • Hellewise Hearth-Woman: Hellewise, the daughter of Hecate Witch-Queen, lives during the Stone Age and is worshiped as the head of the Harman family, the most powerful family of witches. Hellewise is frequently called upon as a source of power in casting and is admired for her benevolence and beauty.
  • Maeve Harman: The mother of Hunter Redfern's daughters, Lily, Garnet, Dove, and Roseclear, Maeve casts the protective spell on the haven that Hunter creates for vampires. Her spell staves off human interference, protecting the Night World residents from discovery. Maeve is not fond of Hunter, despite their blood-tie, and raises their youngest daughter as a witch far from the enclave.
  • Blaise and Thea Harman: The granddaughters of the Crone, Blaise and Thea are cousins and the end of the Harman line. With personalities as opposite as night and day, these two girls are at once intense rivals and best friends.
  • Phillip North: The brother of the well-known made vampire Poppy North, Phil is a psychic who discovers his witch heritage. Linked to the Night World through his father's family, Phil is glad to learn why he can telepathically communicate with his sister - but has no interest in exploring his witch powers.