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Psychic Link
"You might know everything I'm going to do, but that's not going to help you since I know everything you're going to do. Strange, isn't it?"

A Psychic Power that establishes a permanent or semi-permanent connection between two (or sometimes more) people's minds. The effects on the linked individuals may vary: they may simply be able to read each others' thoughts or emotions, or the linkage may be thorough enough to cause a complete loss of individuality.

What distinguishes this from normal Empathy or Telepathy is that these individuals can't use their mind-reading powers on the general population, just on the individuals they're bonded to.

If the people bonded happen to have other magical powers, the individuals may be able to borrow or influence them, making them stronger. Conversely, the mixing of different styles might have a negative effect.

A Psychic Link can be the result of either magic, science, or technology.

Technically, the link is mental, but sometimes physical Synchronization also occurs because Your Mind Makes It Real.

Subtropes include:
  • Bond Creatures: A creature that links with a human in order to share its power.
  • Hive Mind: A link so strong that the individuals function like a single mind.
  • Mental Fusion: A link between magicians, telepaths, or technopaths.
  • Mindlink Mates: A link between lovers, often used to emphasize just how inseparable they are.
  • Twin Telepathy: A link between twins, sometimes for no reason other than the fact that they're twins.

Also, the powers of some Technopaths essentially function like a Psychic Link to a machine. If the power detects the presence of nearby people, it's a Psychic Radar.

Examples

    open/close all folders 

     Anime and Manga  

  • The Digimon in "Digimon Tamers" have one with their Tamers that allows them to know where they are and when they're in danger. Interestingly enough, Impmon and Renamon have one as well that's been shown to let them feel each other's presence, helps Renamon identify him as Beelzemon, and at one point allows her to hear him screaming when he gets electrocuted by a herd of Chrysalismon.
  • Hayate and the Wolkenritter in Magical Girl Lyrical Nanoha. The link allows Hayate to know whenever something very wrong happens to one of her knights.
  • The supersoldiers of Gundam 00 (Allelujah and Marie in particular) are able to utilize quantum brainwaves in a way that allows a form of telepathy; moreover, they can sense each others' presence from miles away. The Innovators take this many steps further; not only can they all communicate psychically, but (according to Regene Regetta) they also use their quantum brainwaves in conjunction with GN particles to create direct links to Veda, and see through each others' eyes. They also have the ability to locate each other and warp the minds of the unsuspecting, as can be seen when Regene scouts out his genetic twin, Tieria Erde, and proceeds to Mind Rape him so hard that he begins to hallucinate.
    • It's a little unclear whether the ELS have this or a Hive Mind in The Movie. It is stated that they maintain contact with each other via quantum brainwaves, in much the same way advanced humans can. Handily, this allows Innovators to contact them... not so handily, the ELS are capable of processing several orders of magnitude more information, and bringing a human into that link places the brain cells under so much strain that they actually begin dying from overexertion.
  • Though one of the characters can already speak telepathically in Mahou Sensei Negima! (plus a minor ability by the lead), the pactio cards allow the two partners to communicate to each other and only each other; this is done with the mage's power (these pairs make up most of the cast). The partners of the mage don't seem to able to communicate with eachother, emphasizing the autonomous nature of the pact. This effectively subverts the nature of the series.
  • Omamori Himari: This is how Tama communicates, since she never actually SPEAKS. It's also made explicit after she lets Himari live instead of eating her: Himari hears Tama's voice inside her head.
  • In Harukanaru Toki No Naka De, the main character and her eight guardians possess the Dragon Gems that, among other things, allow them to feel if the other one is in trouble (though this kind of link does not exist between the guardians themselves). In the manga, Yasuaki goes beyond this with the ability to "read" Akane's emotions... which turns out to be a consequence of him lacking his own ones — once he starts to develop feelings for Akane, the ability is gone for good. Of course, when the characters start to get amazed at how strong their bonds are, the Big Bad finds a way to cut the link off.
  • Soul Eater has this in the form of characters' souls. Soul Resonance allows thoughts to be conveyed between two people, and within groups. Soul and Maka seemed to have gained the ability to decide on their next move without actually saying anything. At least one character can communicate with others through their soul wavelengths (Azusa stays in contact with Ox this way during the Baba Yaga arc).
  • In Dangaioh, the psychic enhancements that the four kids (Miya, Pai, Roll and Lamda) received allow them not only to handle their Psychic Powers, but lets them read each other's thoughts and feelings with relative ease. This is revealed when Miya starts having flashbacks of her life in Earth, which her companions can see too. This gives them the motivation they needed to rebel against their masters and run away.
  • As implied by the page quote, in the Sonic the Hedgehog OVA, Sonic and Metal Sonic are mentally linked, so each of them knows and thinks what the other knows and thinks.
  • Masters and Servants in Fate/stay night seem to have a low-level mental connection — enough at least to tell them if their contract gets severed. The anime, which follows Saber's route from the visual novel, sneakily uses this to reveal something we only find out in Sakura's route. When Rider dies, watch for which character feels it.
  • Skewered hilariously in Princess Resurrection. Hiro's sister Sawawa can feel it right away whenever he's horribly injured or killed — but she always dismisses it as her imagination and goes back to eating her parfait.
  • In the manga adaptation of The Legend of Zelda: A Link to the Past by Akira Himekawa, Link and Zelda are first brought together by her psychic distress call, and continue to maintain the bond throughout the rest of the story. It's hinted, though not outright declared, that they retain the connection throughout their lives. (Psychic Link indeed...)
  • InuYasha: It's hinted at in a few places throughout the manga but only directly commented on once. There's some kind of Psychic Link between Sesshoumaru and Jaken that's acknowledged, but never explained. It doesn't matter where Sesshoumaru goes, Jaken can always find him again with unerring accuracy. When Sesshoumaru experiences something he doesn't want to convey, Jaken immediately conveys it on his behalf (sneezing, which was exploited for comedy, and crying, which was not so comedic). In the end, it's Miroku who puts a voice to the hints that have cropped up throughout the manga after a moment of pure comedy in the middle of a fight reveals the fact to everyone:
    [Sesshoumaru has been entangled in dog-form by the bad guy's tentacles and his response is to... shake like a wet dog.]
    Jaken: Thinking to himself: 'He's not escaping?! Even though he wields his true power in his dog-youkai form, isn't it also true that he has no use of his arms or legs? Well, he's a dog. Doesn't seem like he's that bright. It looks like if he broke the transformation and became smaller, he could just slip through, but... does he not realise this?! He is a dog, after all!'
    [Sesshoumaru escapes in the exact manner Jaken was just thinking about.]
    Jaken: 'Sesshoumaru-sama!' [Cringes at Sesshoumaru's glare] 'I wasn't thinking anything!'
    Rin: 'Jaken-sama, yes you were.'
    Miroku: 'Oh? I get the feeling their minds are connected.'
  • A Psychic Link forged by God is made between the main characters of the oneshot manga Half & Half. For the week they are forced to live together, Shinichi and Yuuki can sense any emotions the other is feeling (hard to lie to your partner when they sense your guilt for being deceptive) and physical sensations (cue Yuuki feeling herself up to see how Shinichi would react). The link does not grant telepathy between them, however.
  • The Mu in Toward the Terra have a semi-conscious telepathic link with each other. This means they can understand the other person much better than an ordinary human, but also leads to complications during the battle. The Mu are strongly distracted by the death of their companions and hearing telepathic screams during the destruction of Nazca turns Jomy into The Unfettered.
  • The MISAKA network of A Certain Magical Index, which is a telepathic link between the 10,000 Misaka clones, allowing them to share information and experiences. In the A Certain Scientific Railgun spinoff, a similar network is created through the Level Upper program, which let one person link to and use the capabilities of thousands of espers at once (while said espers were all in a coma).
  • The bonded partners of Sekirei have an empathic link, with the more powerful able to share dreams. An Ashikabi with multiple Sekirei is also able to act as a psychic intermediary, allowing them to combine their powers together to form new attacks.

     Comic Books  

  • The X-Men 'verse had a few:
    • Scott Summers' psychic rapport with Jean Grey eventually led to them becoming Mindlink Mates.
    • Wolfsbane and Mirage, but only when Rahne was in her wolf form.
    • In Ultimate X-Men, Xavier and Magneto. They used to talk constantly via telepathy when they were still friends. To the ruin of both their marriages. Talk about Foe Yay.
  • The title character from Omega The Unknown and young James-Michael share this, because they are the last of a race of genetically-engineered superbeings.
  • The Falcon has this with birds.

     Fan Fic  

  • In the Star Trek: The Original Series fanfic Insontis, Spock mind melds with McCoy, who then pretends to be willing to help the Klingons. This enables Spock to change authorizations without getting out of the brig.
  • In Keepers of the Elements, the Keepers all share a telepathic link within their own generation and with their individual predecessor.
  • In Revelations, Túrante (the female vampire) feels a "connection" to Legolas (the male elf from The Lord of the Rings). Túrante enjoys the feeling of peace when Legolas is nearby. The connection is why Túrante chooses to reveal herself and save the life of Legolas at the beginning of the story. By chapter 25/26, Túrante can use the connection to see what Legolas is doing. Legolas also feels the connection, which causes both of them to continue falling in love even as they avoid each other through most of the story.

     Film  

  • The 1980s version of Flash Gordon had a telepathic telephone that would establish a Psychic Link between caller and receiver.
  • In Chronicle, there is a mild version of this. After Andrew, Matt and Steve get Psychic Powers from a mysterious flashing thing in the ground, they are somehow linked. They cannot read each others minds, however when one of them is upset or hurt, they both get nosebleeds
  • "Drifting" in Pacific Rim is a medical and scientific showing of this.

     Literature  

  • The Kendar and the Highborn in PC Hodgell's Chronicles of the Kencyrath. The Kendar have a basic need to be bound to a Highborn. The link allows a Highborn to find and feel the health of the Kendar, but also makes the Kendar susceptible to the emotions of the Highborn. It is easily abused, and is by many Highborn.
  • Gerald Tarrant and Damien Vryce get a Psychic Link in the Coldfire Trilogy. Tarrant first makes it so he can feed off Damien's fear during his nightmares. The link becomes more powerful at the very end of the novels.
  • The Aes Sedai and their Warders in The Wheel of Time. Their bond allows them to read one another's emotions.
  • In the Apprentice Adept books, Mach and Bane could communicate across dimensions, but only if their physical locations on their parallel worlds matched. Their kids, Flach and Nepe, could do it regardless of location.
  • In Harry Potter, the protagonist has a psychic link with the Big Bad of the series, causing him to feel Voldemort's emotions.
  • Wizarding partners in Young Wizards tend to develop psychic links with each other.
  • Dracula (the original) forms one of these with Mina Harker as a step towards Mind Control. Unfortunately, he's forced to block the link himself when he realizes that, if he can spy on the heroes through Mina, Mina can spy on him and share information with the rest of the heroes, which is how she eventually leads them to him.
  • The Dark Tower series by Stephen King has a form of this that goes by "khef". Roland and his fellow ka-tet members can often share ideas or points without ever expressing them.
  • Madeleine L'Engle introduced the idea of "kything" in her book A Wind in the Door. Apparently it's much stronger and more immersive than telepathy, as it allows Meg to see through her brother's eyes and provide him with an anchor point later in the series when he's traveling through time.
  • In Vampire Academy, best friends Rose and Lissa have a one-sided mental bond through which Rose can see through Lissa's eyes at will. This comes from the fact that Lissa used her rare ability to control the element Spirit to unknowingly bring Rose back to life after a car accident. Lissa's power is also Power at a Price and can make her very depressed or downright insane with overuse, and Rose can take the effects away from Lissa and suffer them herself.
  • In Tamora Pierce's Circle of Magic series, the four main characters, Daja, Tris, Sandry and Briar all have a pyschic link formed when one of them weaves their magic together. They can communicate telepathically, they can borrow each other's strength, and their magic becomes much stronger when used together.
    • However, the link is weakened by distance. "The Will Of The Empress" deals with the four of them reunited after several years apart, and readjusting to the lack of privacy (as well as their own personal demons).
      • Also, in the same book it is revealed that the four can block the link, preventing mind-to-mind communication. While Sandry can brute-force open the link using the thread that bound them together in the first place, she doesn't because it would be very rude Until she gets trapped in a box and needs her siblings to bust her out
    • A more minor example, but people with similar magics can also sometimes communicate telepathically, especially if they’re close (e.g. Briar with Rosethorn and Sandry with Lark, as student-teacher pairs).
  • Daemons in the His Dark Materials series have a psychic link with their person. Justified as they're really just physical manifestations of the soul.
  • Aaron and Lulu in Pocket in the Sea have a permanent telepathic link. These are not entirely uncommon and are described in the universe as a mental door that can be opened and closed. When one partner of a link dies it's considered a medical emergency for the surviving partner due to the shock.
  • In the Animorphs book The Other, Mertil and Galfinlin share a link that allows them to hear each other's thought-speech even over long distances. It's not clear, or as easy to decipher as if they were near each other, but they can still pick it up.
  • Ilox and Phlarx in The Wild Boy have one. It was hoped Ilox would be the culmination of the Lindauzi project for just such abilities.
  • In the Sherwood Smith installments of Andre Norton's Solar Queen series, four of the crew develop an empathic link, as a result of events in previous novels. They're not especially happy about it, particularly the emotionally private Ali Kamil.
  • In Andre Norton's Ordeal in Otherwhere, Charis and Shann develop one. And use it to argue with the Wyverns. In Forerunner Foray, their son recounts how the Wyverns trained him because of it.
  • Played with in Relativity: When Augustine Fennis gets psychic powers, he can read anyone's mind if he's close enough to them. But he's psychically linked with Ravenswood, meaning that he can read his mind from any distance. He also "transmits" to Ravenswood as well: Ravenswood can read Fennis's mind, but no-one else's. The upshot, unfortunately, is that Ravenswood can see when Fennis commits murder, but can't block it out. He also can't alert anyone without Fennis knowing.
  • Between Thomas and Teresa, and later Aris in The Maze Runner Trilogy. Brenda, momentarily, who hacked into the hotline to tell Thomas things are gonna get worse.
  • The Parshendi Rhythms of The Stormlight Archive act as a low-key version of this. Each rhythm represents an emotion or mood (Resolve, Amusement, Joy, etc). Parshendi automatically attune themselves to the rhythm that matches their mood at the moment. They can deliberately attune a rhythm that does not match their mood, but this takes concentration and is detectable. They seem to exist in some kind of gestalt awareness, and are sometimes used as a marker of time (i.e. a meeting might be at the third movement of Joy or the second movement of Regret).
  • Inadvertently formed between Paige and the Warden in The Bone Season. It turns out that when two psychics save each other's lives too often, the spirit world decides to make things easier for them by forming a permanent psychic tether. Oops.

     Live Action TV  

  • This occurred between Captain Picard and Doctor Crusher, in an episode of Star Trek: The Next Generation.
  • In Star Trek: Voyager a group of Borg drones accidentally got themselves linked to each other. Apparently only having four voices in your head is more distressing than billions.
    "It was like having three people whispering in one ear" "...and a crowd" "...screaming in the other." "We couldn't cope".
  • Used absolutely ridiculously on All My Children when Ryan managed to find Greenlee, who had fallen into an abandoned mineshaft.
  • The pilot of Fringe features a temporary, technologically-based link between Agent Dunham and John Scott in order to find a missing, unidentified suspect. The drug cocktail used to "open her consciousness" involves ketamine and lysergic acid, also known as LSD. Yeah.
    • In the episode "Bad Dreams," Olivia finds herself psychically linked to a man who is causing people to kill themselves with his thoughts. It is later revealed that the psychic link exists because Olivia and the murderer were both treated with the experimental drug Cortexiphan when they were children.
      • In a later episode, the man has a much better control over his abilities and is in a steady relationship with a woman who can incinerate things with her mind.
  • Stargate SG-1 showed this in an eighth season episode "Citizen Joe", when a man inadvertently linked into Colonel/General O'Neill's mind when O'Neill was writing his mission reports. O'Neill revealed that he had had the reverse visions, but had ignored them for seven years since he found them relaxing.
  • In Star Trek: Deep Space Nine, the Founders (including Odo during his "solid" phase) have the capability to form psychic links with others despite not being telepaths.
  • Yet another Star Trek example: The Vulcan Mind Meld.
  • Doctor Who. Hilariously spoofed in "The Lodger" when the Doctor gives a human a massive Info Dump by headbutting him. There'd been previous examples of Time Lord telepathy in "Girl in the Fireplace," "The Three Doctors," and "The Last of the Time Lords" - in the latter it was Time Lord to Time Lord, though.
    • The Doctor has a permanent psychic link set up with the TARDIS, though its not the transfer of words, but rather emotions and feelings. Companions can tap into the link, too. In "The Doctor's Wife" its used by Amy to open locked doors in the TARDIS, and its how they can understand aliens, no matter where or when they are.
  • Played for laughs several times in How I Met Your Mother. Two of the characters will be in a situation where they can't talk openly, so they have entire silent "psychic" conversations using just facial expressions. Sometimes this works, and other times one of the characters will completely misinterpret what the other person is saying.
  • A more straightforward example occurs in the The X-Files fifth season episode "Mind's Eye", in which a blind woman covers up for her Serial Killer absentee father because she can only see through his eyes.
  • Tracker had a race called Orsians, who were born in pairs, with each pair sharing a psychic link. They often used jewelry or metal collars to better conduct the brainwaves.
  • On Charmed the Halliwell sisters share a connection that certainly borders a Psychic Link, but is never full blown. Phoebe, being actually psychic, can access and manipulate this connection the easiest. When Piper is caught on a separate plane, Phoebe is able to sense her. In the comic continuation of the show, Phoebe, Piper, and Paige all enter a literal and stronger telepathic connection thanks to a spell which lets them communicate across three different planes.
  • A mix between this and a Hive Mind with the Taelons Commonality in Earth: Final Conflict. All Taelons are joined in it, although they are still separate individuals who don't share thoughts. The primary purpose of the Commonality is to keep the Taelons civilized. Without it, they would quickly revert to their atavian ancestors.

     Tabletop Games  

     Toys  

  • Takua and Gali in BIONICLE.
    • It becomes a plot point when a corrupted Takanuva is mistaken for an enemy by Pohatu; the Psychic Link with Gali is the only way to prove his identity.

     Video Games  

  • Both Knights of the Old Republic games feature Psychic Links between the player character and one of their companions, Bastila in the first, Kreia and every party member, even the 3 droids, has another form of link in the second. While Bastila's is almost an Informed Ability that does nothing more than share a few dreams, Kreia's is of more importance to the story, as if either one of you dies, the other dies with you (and mechanically, you share buffs).
  • Morrigan in Dragon Age: Origins gives the player character a ring that forms a minor mental bond between the two.
  • First Encounter Assault Recon has the link between the Replica forces and their psychic commander which enables the commander to monitor the Replicas' activities from a safe distance, receive instantaneous feedback from the field troops, and telepathically issue orders in response to that information. While the Replica soldiers are perfectly capable of acting on their own once activated and given orders by duly authorized people, they work best with the psychic commander coordinating their overall activities.
    • There is also a link between Alma and her Children The first time she linked with Paxton Fettel, things went terribly wrong. The second? It turned an entire city into a Warzone, and eventually to it becoming a paranormal hellhole.
    • Also, between Becket and Alma
  • Appears in the visual novel Songs Of Araiah. Magicians form "blood links" with other people allowing them to cast "internal" spells (eg. Mind reading, manipulating senses, immortality)
  • Dragons in the Panzer Dragoon universe form mental bonds with their riders, showing them their mission of destroying the Towers as well as to coordinate their attacks.
  • Aurin of WildStar have a deep emphatic connection to trees and plant-life, to the point where the forests are considered friends and family.

     Webcomics  

  • Zimmy and Gamma from Gunnerkrigg Court can only speak with each other telepathically, since neither knows the other's language. Additionally, Gamma's presence has some unspecified therapeutic effect on Zimmy's mind. It's implied that their psychic link was simply there the very first time they met.
    • It has been explained since that Gamma's powers work as a sort of white noise generator that covers up Zimmy's uncontrollable psychic bursts with calming stream of consciousness.
    • A number of fans are convinced that Zimmy and Gamma are also Mindlink Mates.
  • The Magus Brothers from Twokinds. Their mind-link wasn't inborn, but rather the result of the elder merging his soul with his younger sister to save her from dying when her soul was torn by dark magics.
  • The protagonist of A Beginner's Guide to the End of the Universe is able to communicate telepathically with both of his pets; the bigger their RAPPORT, the more advanced the link is, starting at simple detection of when the pet is in danger and ending with a full-fledged two-way telepathic conversation.
  • For a while, there existed a psychic link between Monica and Jin of Wapsi Square. It had something to do with an accidental sharing of demons, and it resulted in them being able to communicate telepathically.
  • Susan and Anna Enfield from Sire share a body and can communicate via their thoughts. Especially useful after meeting people who can perceive both girls, even when they are not inside the body.

     Web Original  

  • It is thought that the Slender Man is somehow able to do this with both his victims and his proxies.

     Western Animation  

     Real Life  

  • Not Truth in Television so far as out-and-out mind reading goes, but there have been many (claimed) incidents where a mother just seemed to know that something was wrong with her child, or that the child needed her to call them, or that they were hurt. There have also been (claimed) accounts of a non-twin sibling just "sensing" that something has happened to their brother/sister, or at least finding themselves upset for no apparent reason.
  • Three words: Rodent Mind Meld. Scientists have successfully found a way to link one lab rat's mind to another. What is basically an electronic form of telepathy, experiments found that one rat's mind can communicate with another rat from halfway across the world when both of them are hooked up to the same electronic device. One rat is provided with a problem, and the other knows the solution and tells it to the other. Both of them usually act in tandem, both flipping a switch at the same time or what-have-you.
  • Very intense friendships and relationships can appear to be like this.


Neural ImplantingOne with the IndexRemote Body
Power of the VoidMagic and PowersBond Creatures
Psychic ChildrenSpeculative Fiction TropesPsychic Powers
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