An orc male who dislikes the hard warrior life, has disguised himself as an orc female and is learning how to become a Shaman. If uncovered as a male, his fellow orcs will be disgusted enough to kill him.
A group of wizards who will give others temporary magical powers, but the price is high and those who can't pay or won't pay get very badly hurt or even killed.
All magic is suddenly gone. No mage can sling sorcery anymore. This upsets all empires and civilizations. It is soon discovered though, trough the combined work of mystics, scholars and dreams, that all the magic has been drawn into a single orb in a vast tower located at one of the poles. Whoever gets there first wins the greatest price in history, access to all the magic in the world. But who owns the tower?