From Sanctuary Shard
Sanctuary is a world heavily steeped in magic which is now easily accessible to both native people and travelers. What then differentiates the Witch from the rest of the population? What makes him or her worthy of being considered a separate sub-race? Is it simply natural talent that puts them at the top of their class? An early understanding of the spirit world? In another world, in another time, perhaps. But not so here.
We must remember that during the entire time of the Thorn King, magic was viewed with derision and suspicion at best and murderous intent at worst. What allowed the Witch race to survive, and in some places thrive, was their natural ability to charm and glamour. With a toss of their hair, they might charm the witch hunter as he turned the corner, or with a flick of their fingers change their appearance and slip into the crowd.
Surely, witches have a natural talent with magic compared to other native humans, but in a world now exploding with magical non-humans, they will have to fight for their place as teacher's pet. But their origins were of survival. Each witch has the ability to charm another with one physical attribute; the tossing of hair, the licking of lips, the turn of an ankle, the flex of a shoulder, the flash of a smile, or the wink of an eye. And each might change their human appearance; age, hair color, eye color, body shape, vocal inflection, and height at will.