Over the last few centuries, the country of Vestiga has flourished. The power of magic flows strongly through the veins of its residents, and is both studied and used to the full benefit of its people. From a young age, children are taught to control and use their powers in a manner considered both safe and highly beneficial, alongside their normal studies. Gifted adults use their powers to help provide for their families, and to aid them at work. Those who decide to really push themselves can become proper mages, who practice magic for a living, both as teachers and scholars. With almost every person in the country able to fight for themselves if necessary, by way of their magical powers, Vestiga suffers very little in the way of outward threats. Indeed, for another country to even consider challenging vestiga, they would need to be mighty indeed.
Of course, life is far from perfect. Every country has their problems, and Vestiga is no exception. With standards set so high by the larger part of the community, families who are unable to keep up often fall into poverty. Many are forced to work like servants just to get by, and a strict master can push anyone to the brink of exhaustion, magic or no. Worse still, there are those who disregard all ethics and human rights, experimenting on other people for the sake of 'progress'. Many government officials are willing to look the other way, and even assist such scientists so long as their work continues to produce results.
Of course, not everyone is so lucky as to receive the gift of magic. For reasons still unknown, some children are born without any powers at all. In a nation whose success was so heavily built upon magic, such children are often seen as degenerates and useless They are frequently subject to disgusting treatment at the hands of their 'betters'. Even those who manage to survive the rough upbringing destined for such a child are treated just as badly at work, only given the most terrible and unwanted jobs, and for minimal pay.
Enter the city of Zeria.
A city where law scarcely seems to exist, the Zeria is a paradise for shady scientists, arms dealers, corrupt politicians and assassins alike. A place where they can rest, hide, and even build themselves a home without fear of judgement from their neighbours. Dirty, dark and polluted, it is considered a place only for the lowest of the low. Within the city, though, one organisation saw a potential answer for two of Vestiga's problems. They extended an open offer to families all over the country - they would immediately take in any children born without magic powers, and pay a tidy sum to the family's parents to boot.
For many poor families, this was seen as an irresistible opportunity - they would be able to get rid of a useless mouth to feed, and earn themselves a bonus in the process, no questions asked. Within days, those born without powers began to pour into the city, many of whom were never seen again. Of course, there were always rumours...and with the ever-growing need for human test subjects, well...it wasn't too hard to figure out what fate awaited those poor children.
This the story of two such children, a chance encounter, and one impossible dream of freedom.