Grandmaster is an Imperial title bestowed upon a magician who is a member of a Conclave order. Each order is represented by a single grandmaster, which means that at this time there are seven grandmasters.
Grandmaster is a political title closely involved with the running of the Conclave. Grandmasters encourage members of their order to participate in Conclave affairs, and represent their order during a Conclave session. Most grandmasters also work to maintain cohesion within their order and to encourage members to pursue and advance the manifesto of the order. A strong grandmaster can organise the magicians that are part of their order and help them wield political and magical power throughout the Empire.
Each grandmaster is responsible for supporting the manifesto, advancing the goals, and representing the members of their Conclave order. They receive numerous political powers to allow them to do so. Their responsibility is to their order first, to the Imperial Conclave second, and to the Empire as a whole third.
The grandmaster is also responsible for overseeing the distribution and use of the resources made available to their order. Each order receives a share of the mana from the font, and it is the responsibility of the grandmaster to ensure that the mana they receive on behalf of their order is used in pursuit of their order's goals. Grandmasters have been removed, and in extreme cases excommunicated for engaging in too much brazen corruption at the expense of their order.
Guiding the Conclave
Once per summit, each grandmaster has the ability to add a single declaration to the agenda of a Conclave session without spending crystal mana. They follow all other rules and guidelines for submitting an article for the Conclave agenda (it must be in advance, with the assistance of a civil servant, and they are responsible for any presentation).
Veil of Night
Once per summit, when they submit a declaration to the Conclave agenda, a grandmaster can choose to invoke the veil of night. If they do so, they are not required to reveal any detail of a declaration: it is recorded simply as "The Grandmaster of (Order) presents a declaration under the veil of night." If the Grandmaster wishes to present a Declaration of Candidacy under the veil of night they must inform the Civil Service of this when they put submit the item to the agenda. It is recorded as "The Grandmaster of (Order) presents a declaration of Candidacy under the veil of night" and resolved alongside other Declarations of Candidacy.
|Total Money Spent||Production|
|15 Crowns||12 crystal mana|
|35 Crowns||24 crystal mana|
|60 Crowns||36 crystal mana|
|90 Crowns||48 crystal mana|
|125 Crowns||60 crystal mana|
Funding the Order
The grandmaster has the ability to spend money to buy crystal mana for their order's vault. A grandmaster can spend money each season as if they controlled a ministry. The civil service uses the money spent in this manner to buy directly from other Imperial citizens who have access to crystal mana, and provides it to the grandmaster along with their share of the fount at the start of the next summit.
At the start of each summit, the grandmaster receives a share of the mana in the font as determined by precedence, along with a share of ilium and any bequests made to their order (such as Materials or vis). The grandmaster is the sole arbiter of how these resources are used, within the remit of their responsibilities.
Power of Precedence
During a Conclave session the ability to speak before the Conclave - to address the assembly - is controlled by the grandmasters. After the presentation of an agenda item is complete, the grandmaster nominate volunteers to speak on the topic being discussed, in order determined by the Principle of Precedence.
During the Winter Solstice 380YE, the Imperial Senate voted to grant the grandmasters a stipend to assist in the purchase of crystal mana. The amount of the stipend was, however, set to 0 crowns. A motion to increase the stipend during the Spring Equinox 382YE was defeated. Each grandmaster technically receives a stipend from the treasury, but gets no money for it.
Each grandmaster is selected by full members of their Conclave order. Only a member of the order can present themselves for the title, and only a member of the order can vote in a grandmaster election. The candidate who gains the most votes from the members of their order receives the title of grandmaster. Once a magician has been eligible to vote in a grandmaster election they cannot vote in the election of the grandmaster of a different order until a year has passed.
A grandmaster serves for a year, until a challenge forces their re-election, until they die or step down, or until the start of the next election.
The schedule for annual appointment is:
- Spring - Golden Pyramid and Sevenfold Path
- Summer - Unfettered Mind
- Autumn - Shuttered Lantern and Silver Chalice
- Winter - Celestial Arch and Rod and Shield
At an event where a grandmaster is to be re-elected, the civil service organises hustings immediately prior to the Conclave session on Saturday evening. The Civil Service will not run emergency grandmaster elections.
The Hall of Worlds is ceded to the order in question, and they have an allotted period of time (around half an hour) to decide their grandmaster. While members of other orders (and priests exercising the right of witness) can attend the meeting they cannot speak, and the civil service will exclude anyone who attempts to interrupt the proceedings.
Each candidate receives a minute to state their case, but may spend crystal mana to make a longer speech if they require (at the rate of one crystal mana per minute as usual). Each magician who is a full member of the order may then cast one vote. The candidate who receives the largest number of votes gains the title of Grandmaster of the order.
Crystal mana paid during hustings is not added to the font, but is instead placed directly into the order's vault at the next summit.