Growing up in Wyrlde means growing up within the traditions and expectations that have held firm for over a thousand years. It means having lived with the history and values and duties and responsibilities that come for all of us. And it also means that we can group the process of growing up into stages.
The first is as an Infant. Infants are just born up through the age of 4. Life begins with the Quickening, which happens at first breath. The second stage is when they are a Child, from 5 to 9. It is in childhood that the ability to use magic becomes more apparent, and that there is a risk of being kidnapped by Urmages. Sometimes people will talk about “kids”, and when they do, they are always talking about Children.
The third stage is Youth. Youthhood is between 10 and 14 years, with coming-of-age rites around 14 or so for most, but connection to the broader community and responsibility are delayed. Upon Wyrlde, development is uniform among the sexes. As a result, women and men mature physically at the same rate, and around the same time, instead of distinctly in different times.
Youthhood is where the first inklings of the person you will become is seen, and those parts and things affixed here will carry over throughout one’s life. It is during this period that some of the most famous adventurers learned much of the unique qualities about themselves.
Starting at 15 is when they are called Apprentices, only in part because it is the age most folks are apprenticed out. The term is used more commonly than the more officious Juvenal (derided as Juniors), because ultimately, it tends to be true.
Adulthood comes following that at the age of 20, and most apprenticeships are given over to Novice status or the individual heads into the world proper. This is the age at which it becomes described as Age of Majority and Age of Consent, and there are elaborate rites of passage for this. It is also the age at which responsibility for one’s actions kick in, regardless of other factors – many a ‘prentice has been enslaved or imprisoned or branded for some damn fool thing they did. Fortunately, the young are more likely to claim Ordeal.
Senior is when they generally become what folks think of as “old”. It is when infirmity and depredations of time have firmly taken hold of the body, and it begins to become more and more difficult to remain hale and whole for nearly all the peoples, this happens starting around 20 years before the end of their lifespans, or about the last 20% of it.
Lifespan is a general end point for most people, assuming illness and disease or violence do not claim them. This figure can vary as much as ten years in any direction for all but the Goblin. They seem to be almost programmed, having a variance of only about a year to either side. The rest can vary 3 to 10 years in either direction.
Death is not the end upon Wyrlde. When one dies the spirit is reborn within one of the seven Mortal Realms, and there is always a chance that they will recall some or much of their past life. The Realm you are born into is determined by your actions in this life, but eventually you will return here, for we all go through all the Realms at least seven times.