Soon after everyone has awoken, a man appears in the middle of the circle formed by the beds, flickering slightly, suggesting an astral projection instead of his actual presence, and examines each of you carefully, before speaking.
"I have brought you eight here to perform... Well, let's call it an experiment. The most powerful of the magi under my command have sifted through your minds to find your wishes for power. You are the few that I found acceptable.
"Upon my discovery of your wishes, you were altered, infused with magic that you beasts may not have before witnessed or accessed. You won't have full control of your powers yet, and must work towards learning the extent of them, working together to stay alive while you learn.
"This process is not without its downsides though. I cannot supply power without a price. In your case, you may have lack the strength you once had, leaving you insufficient in combat capabilities, and some of you may have been so unlucky as to have your mind fracture slightly. Not to worry though, as these defects should not leave you too vulnerable, and the presence of magic has likely replaced the need for weapons to defend yourselves... And possibly coherent thought.
Now, on to the aim of this experiment. Giving a being magical abilities is not a common occurrence. Yes, all beings are born with an innate magical awareness, but most are unable to tap into this, and the only real effects they feel are a slight prickling of the skin, which is their subconscious trying to warn them of the magic nearby.
You are the first group with whom I have tried the procedure of bringing forth this subconscious, giving you access to this power. The process has not had a chance to be refined, which is the cause for the side effects, and you may not be as powerful as a naturally gifted being, but there should be no permanent damage. Your memories may return given sufficient time, and your bodies will recover, grow back to their previous strength if you work hard enough.
You will be set to a series of tasks, which will hopefully be enough to challenge you, to encourage what is still locked to reveal itself. Now, before you become too enraged for my tampering, I am not simply abusing you, using you as testing dummies. I offer a trade of sorts. If you manage to make your way through the tests, then you will be free to go, to return to your families and villages, to keep your newfound power. In exchange, I shall be observing, learning. I hope to eventually find a way to optimise the process of accessing the inherent powers everyone has.
You may think I simply want to find a way to make my soldiers stronger, improve myself, but this is not so. My people have been facing danger for some time now, and this is the last resort to protect them. I have not the numbers to take my own men to test, and not the time to send word to others of my need for willing subjects, so I am forced to fall back on the like of you, who have no business being pulled into this."
You cannot be sure if the man is truthful or if he is trying to trick you into going through with this. There is no real option here though, so you'll just have to find out.
"An exit will shortly open in the northern wall, and you will be supplied with several staves, which will make it easier for you to channel your power, in the next room. I would suggest you get accustomed to the effects before you proceed any farther than the next few rooms."
At this, the projection vanishes, and a door opens in what you assume is the north wall shortly afterwards.
SPOILERS:Derp. I forgot about the stat change. Players have no natural attack, which is why it may have seemed like I was focusing a bit much on combat oriented spells. The amount of disabling spells that you guys have should carry you through fights though.