Leif: Magical girls need special items to transform, right? Like a locket or a pen? Doesn’t that mean . . . if the item gets lost, they’re sunk?
Thorn: Oh, losing your magic is a lot harder than that.
Transformation items are a little bit like heartswords — they appear “out of nowhere” when the magical girl’s power activates for the first time. Either because you were working to learn it, or because you were in a situation so desperate, your magic automatically manifested in response.
From then on — also like a heartsword — you don’t have to physically carry it around! You can summon it from “hammerspace” at the moment you need to transform.
So these items are basically impossible to just lose. The only way to really get sunk is if someone takes the transformation item and destroys it. Then you won’t be able to transform again . . .
Until some new dramatic situation gives you the power to manifest a replacement. (Usually with a higher power level, and a cool new outfit.)
When a Dark Magical Girl gets caught, they’re usually sentenced to “a period of time in power-blocking bracelets” and “destruction of their current transformation item.”
When a case comes up for bracelet-removal, the reviewers consider whether they’re more likely to manifest their next item out of “a drive to do good” or “a drive to keep doing evil, but this time with more power.”
Leif: So if a dark magical got half their bracelets off, could they only manifest half an item?
Thorn: Either that, or get stuck halfway through the transformation. . . . That’s totally a guess! Not a scenario I’ve seen in person, or anything!