Mages are wielders of elemental forms of magic and first appeared (or perhaps reappeared) in Vheld during the time of the Accordance War and the Cataclysm. Mages are also known as "unnaturals" or "witches" given their ability to manipulate fire, water, air or earth at will.
Due in large part to the Mage Tyrants and their near-obliterations of the Vori Islands during the Accordance War, mages are outlawed in most of the modern nations except the Free Islands. In the Great Republic , the Bureau of Public Health and Safety conducts routine sweeps of the city to find and exile anyone suspected of practicing magic to the Vori Islands, as determined by the Treaty of Paravo. It is not unusual that many Faeblooded have magical apptitude from birth.
To be finished Edit
Clorencia has been hunting these people (mages) for years now. The old man (Many had) has been on the run and hiding out under a variety of identities for a few years now. And most peculiarily, not only can these(Magic) powers be taught, but they must be passed on before (the mage's death) you die, else you rise up as a creature of magic and destruction (hence the firelady of Bralholme).