Rasmussen School of Illusion:

The RSI, as it is often called, is one of many mages' guilds located in or around Metamor City. It is also the guild to which Detective Kate Kitaen is a member.

Founded by Ivan Rasmussen in 1736, the RSI is dedicated to the advancement of the illusionary arts, at once the simplest and most difficult of all schools of magic. Simple, because creating a mana field that affects only light and sound (rather than producing something substantial) is an easy and straightforward application of magical theory; difficult, because shaping light and sound into an illusion that is detailed, lifelike and accurate in its depiction of something else requires an extraordinary memory and an attention to detail that is rare even among wizards.

The RSI is a wizard-only mages' guild; sorcerors rarely have the self-discipline to become illusionists at all, and a skilled illusionist depending on intuitive sorcery is virtually unheard of. Like most mages' guilds, the RSI accepts students as early as age 7, and provides schooling and training through the Adeptus Exemptus level. Graduates of the school may return to work or study with their masters even after graduation, but they are also urged to go out and experience the world at large, as a journeyman is meant to do.

Being a society of Illusionists, the RSI doesn't take itself too seriously -- whimsy and humor are part and parcel of life in this guild. Practical jokes run rampant among both the students and the faculty, and an insult by another mages' school is more likely to be answered with clever gags than harsh words. The RSI teaches that laughter is good for the soul, and that people best reveal their true selves in how they respond to a good-natured ribbing. Those who can laugh at themselves are truly wise, for they know a humility that cannot be found in the pious man nor the intellectual. Not that the RSI condemns either intellect nor piety, but all must be kept in balance with a keen sense of one's own innate absurdity.

Kate's mentor at the RSI is a man named Danarr, a kindly mage in his early 50s who wears the somewhat incongruous form of a jackal morph. Danarr is quite fond of Kate and a true illusionist at heart, but he's also a firm teacher who isn't afraid to call her on the carpet when he thinks she's screwing up.