Halshim [birth name unknown], or 'Magus', as he was called in Ancient Greece, may be one of the earliest mortal wizards. His exact age is unknown, though his land of origin has been confirmed to be Mesopotamia. Though written records actually quoting him are exceedingly rare, one of the few existing has him claiming to have been the court wizard of 'the great king' of his home kingdom. Potential candidates for his original benefactor include Gilgamesh of Uruk, Sargon of Akkad, Hammurabi of Babylon and Shamshi-Adad I of Assyria.
Before the destruction of the Library of Alexandria, credible records of Halshim's life existed starting from around one thousand years BC. One of these stories claimed the great prophet Zarathustra, also known as Zoroaster, was Magus' last student before he gave up on such things in favour of self-perfection. It was also hinted that Zarathustra's patron meta-entity Ahura Mazda [dead, killed by the Sealing] may have been a partner in Magus' studies of the Arcane.
Until the months before the Sealing, it was unknown how Halshim lived for centuries without aging a day. Persistent rumours among the wizards of the day spoke of the Philosopher's Stone, sometimes citing his work with Egyptian alchemists. Other stories that existed among the lost scrolls of Alexandria claimed he was one third a god (meta-entity) by heritage. Magus himself spent his extended life travelling the known world of the day, meeting wizards and mortal-minded meta-entities and sharing his extensive knowledge with them to gain more information and power himself.
Come the age the Archmage lived in, Halshim had grown seemingly desperate, enough so that when the idea of sealing magic came about, he accepted it. The Archmage and her apprentices, who would later form the Umbra, were suspicious, since Magus thought his magic defined him and would never give it up unless there was no other option. When questioned about his motives, he shared the story behind his immortality, which is one of the few records that has been preserved to this day instead of being destroyed by special orders from the High Council:
"In the day and age when I was a mortal, born from a mother and brought up over many a year, I saw my father grow old and die a white-haired, toothless man. I could not accept his destiny to myself, and so I travelled to the desert to die a young man, with my grace and power intact. In the hour of my death, a figure approached me, tall and grim. It spoke to me with a booming voice and said I had a power within me, a force greater than that of anyone I had ever known.
It said it could help me use the power if only I promised I would give myself to it when I passed away. I refused, asking what good this power was if it would only last my fleeting human life, and the thing stared at me for a while. Then it told me that in my defiance, my worth to it had increased, and promised I would live the duration of many a human lives if I accepted. After I had worded my agreement, I asked its name and it told me it was Pazuzu [fate unknown, presumed dead]. I woke up the next morning in my home city, fully healthy and awakened to my gift of magic.
I travelled the world for many years, growing more powerful and more knowledgeable, but never older. And yet, everywhere I went, I saw people doomed to die, which reminded me of my own deal and its limited duration. As wizards grew more numerous and some of the Gods came to openly communicate with them, I asked in many places of Pazuzu and eventually heard of it. They told me it had claimed the very souls of many a human and God alike, selling some service in exchange for their core being and magic capabilities. I was horrified at the fate this revelation presented to me, and sought to find a way to slay a powerful demon such as Pazuzu so I could save myself.
Many a year I have sought and I have found nothing, for Pazuzu is impossible to find unless it wills to be found. But then I ran into something useful: there was a claim that Pazuzu himself had grown too old to live naturally anymore, and was seeking the souls of others to keep itself alive. Your sealing may not kill it directly, but it will lose its sustenance and die the unthinkable death of old age which I seek to avoid."
Halshim revealed that Tiamat, the Great Mother of the meta-entities of Mesopotamia [dead, killed by another meta-entity in 722 BC], had taught him the secrets of the Astral Plain, which meant that his knowledge was essential if one was to ever seal magic. While the Archmage's magic alone was enough to cover the corporeal world, Magus' would be needed to prevent meta-entities from circumventing the block through this alternate plane of existence. The plan was agreed to and the preparations were made.
Ever since the Sealing [see full details in chapter two], Halshim has been trapped under the island of Atlantis, presumably still unable to die but yet incapable of using magic to escape (certain supporters of the Law of Magodynamics claim that the spell keeping him alive must have ended by now, but it has been scientifically proven that magic cast by powerful meta-entities works on its own rules). All knowledge currently held points at Pazuzu dying from the sealing, as Magus has predicted.
— Umbra's Lexicon of Magic and Notable Wizards
chapter unchanged since year 1795
ADDENDUM FROM YEAR 2014: Two wizards were sent to study the site of Atlantis under orders from the High Council. The ruins have exploded from within. Investigation on the possible return of Halshim pending...