The Outer Gods (Fleshforge Legacy Supplement)
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When time began, the outer planes were a chaotic morass of raw energy. Slowly, though the countless ages, this power began to coalesce into the very first of what we would, today, recognize as gods. These tiny gods were weak, unsure of their powers, learning. Then one infant god struck at another, destroying him. The loser’s essence flowed out of his broken form, and the victor consumed it, doubling it’s own power. Seeing this, the multitude of gods began to clash. Those gods with no interest in fighting, out of fear for themselves, joined together one by one, growing in power to match those who consumed the essences of the others. Some made deals, others simply slaughtered all those nearby. And in this fashion, the gods grew fewer and fewer in number, those remaining towering over their infant forms, huge and powerful beyond anything they could have imagined.
Many millennia later, their infinite numbers were reduced to just eight, each infinitely powerful, and all of them equally matched, though utterly different from one another. Thus, for ages, an eight-sided war was waged, each deity solidifying their powers and creating servants and warriors. However, no matter how hard each side fought, there was no movement, the eight were locked in a stalemate, their powers matched evenly by all others. However, only recently a new plane has come into there view. Tryor, long hidden to them from behind the barrier of the elemental planes and a nigh-impenetrable shell. However, the world was ruled by ‘Shapers’ a twisted race that mutated and warped the denizens of the planet. While the hearts of the goodly gods cried out to put an end to their cruel tyranny, and the evil gods craved new souls to toy with and torment, they all new that to divert their forces to destroy these shapers, even for a moment, could spell their own doom. But then, something happened, and shapers were driven off, into the far distant planes. Free from the threat of another war, the gods eagerly spread their message to the world that freed itself from it’s tyrants. Some wanted to heal the wounded world. Others wanted to become it’s new rulers. Still others wished to destroy it’s inhabitants. But all wanted the souls offered up by the mortals as they died. Each mortal soul held a shard of divinity, and the outer gods saw these shards as a chance to finally break the age-spanning stalemate.
- The Glorious God, Belenus takes the form of a massive, muscular male angel. His head and face are shaved, showing strong, handsome features. His flawless skin and four massive, feathered wings glow with an inner radiance. He has no eyes, only glowing pools of pure white light. When he opens his mouth to speak, his mouth too pours forth white light. He wears very little, only a pair of silvery gauntlets and a set of armored greaves. He carries in his gauntleted hands a massive hammer, with an angular, intricately carved head capable of dealing terrible, terrible blows to the enemies of justice and light.
Belenus controls the plane of Celestia. There he rules over armies of angelic warriors with a harsh but fair hand. The plane itself is a titanic mountain of marble. The mountain has been carved down into a seven-layer tiered city. His angelic legions soar freely from layer to layer. The cities are perfectly ordered and regulated. The lowest layers are populated by his common follower’s souls. The middle layers are populated by the more powerful or more faithful of his mortal followers. Above them dwell his angels. At the very peak of the mountain is a massive fortress-palace, where his most powerful angels dwell, and Belenus’ ivory and gold throne sits.
Belenus is a staunch ally of Bahsemat, and finds much in common with Xelorut. He would likely respect Balamati‘s order and dedication, were she not so ultimately evil and her methods so underhanded and honorless. He can, on occasion, get along with Atarah, but ultimately, her flighty, irresponsible nature simply is too grating for the god of order. He’s not entirely sure what he thinks about Azazel. He despises the man’s methods and unflinching greed, but his forces have been extremely helpful at times when he thought his enemies would overwhelm him (Though they cost a great deal more gold than he was entirely comfortable with parting from). Sargon, or whatever he’s calling himself these days, deserves nothing but contempt in Belenus‘ eyes. A flighty, irresponsible lunatic, too wrapped up in his own hedonistic desires to care about anything. But one enemy holds a special sort of ire in Belenus’s heart. Throughout the many ages, the Angra have been a thorn in his side, but Angra Bahram stokes a rage within him unlike any before. When these two warriors clash, their mighty blows shake the planes beneath him
Portfolio: Justice, Order, and Light.
Domains: Glory, Good, Law, Nobility, Pride, Strength, Sun, War.
Cleric Training: Clerics of Belenus are trained both in scripture and in combat. Nonviolence is not an option for the clerics of belenus. Evil festers in the world, and it must be destroyed, purged by the glorious light of Belenus. The monasteries of belenus produce warrior clerics and paladins, with a sizable number of crusaders as well.
Quests: Belenus sends his followers on quests for one reason. To destroy evil, no matter it’s form, no matter where it hides. There is a particularly high number of quests to destroy the churches of Angra Bahram, Belenus’ most hated foe.
Prayers: Prayers to Belenus most commonly take one of three forms. The first is a the pre battle blessing, where a warrior prays for strength and guidance in the coming battle against evil. The second, is the dedication of a kill, which is usually little more that a few short words shouted in praise as each enemy falls. Each monastery teaches a different phrase, and followers of Belenus often use this prayer to identify their orders to one-another. The third form is the post battle gratitude, where they give praise and thanks to Belenus for aiding them in battle
Temples: Temples to Belenus show up in many cities scattered across Tryor. These temples usually are strongly present in their communities, often with members of the congregation involved in the city guard, sometimes with honest-to-goodness paladins patrolling the city looking for wrongdoers. The temples themselves are usually impressive, all-stone structures, usually two or more floors tall, often with battlements on the upper walls. The temples serve as sanctuaries for the righteous in times of danger. There have been several occasions of Belenus’ clergy staring down angry mobs and even invading military forces to protect those within their temples.
Rites: Belenus’ most famous rite is the ritual of lighting. Immediately after sundown, the priests of Belenus perform a short ritual in front of their temple, asking for Belenus to keep his light alive in the world, so all can be safe within it’s embrace. The ritual is completed by lighting all the lights in the temple and a large light in the front of the temple. This can be a giant brazier, a simple lamp, or in larger temples, a lamp post with a permanent daylight spell on it.
Heralds and Allies: Belenus’ herald is a particularly powerful angelic warrior, wielding a great hammer much like Belenus’ own. His allies are the flights of angel created in his image.
Favored Weapon: Belenus’ favored weapon is the greathammer.
- Bahsemat, the Blind Lover, is a tall, full-figured woman wearing a white gown with a hood. The hood is always up, and pulled down low over her eyes. The hood bears a golden sunburst emblazoned in the center of her forehead. The gown is sleek and hugs her figure as it runs down to the ground, except for the flared sleeves that drape from her wrists. She almost always depicted with her arms out to her sides, welcoming the faithful and the faithless alike into her soothing embrace. She carries no weapons and wears no armor.
Bahsemat rules over Elysium, where her faithful’s souls and guardinal servants live. The plane is a glorious paradise, an eternity of grassy fields dotted by fragrant wildflowers and cool shade-trees. However, this expansive paradise is marred by the high marble walls that surround the field on all sides. In the very center of the plane is a towering marble palace of smooth lines. A single marble-paved road leads from the palace to the edge of the plane, constantly patrolled by warrior guardinals. The palace opens onto the road in a huge hospital structure separated into wards for each plane of origin, with leonals patrolling between them. The hospital serves all comers. Elementals, other outsiders, even demons and devils, all come to the Elysium hospitals. Occasionally, even powerful mortals will make the journey to cure terrible curses and plagues.
Bahsemat is non-aggressive. She remains neutral in the eight-sides war, holding the door of her hospital open to all comers, though she has no patience for those who would try to take advantage of her kindess by using her hospital to attack their wounded enemies. She tends to get along the best with Benelus and Atarah, who are both relatively benevolent. Xelorut is too unreasonably focused on his laws for her to get along with properly, and Sargon is much too unpredictable. Angra Bahram provides an impressive number of victims for her hospital, and as such their relations are less than friendly. Still, she continues to treat his devils. Balamati similarly is responsible for a great many victims, as well as some of the more fearsome curses that Bahsemat has had to untangle. Azazel, however, continually irritates her. His minions strike with deadly force and accuracy, and while they produce many bodies, it’s very rare they leave their targets wounded.
Portfolio: Forgiveness, Purity, Cleansing
Domains: Family, Good, Healing, Protection, Purification, Renewal
Cleric Training: Bahsemat’s clerics are trained well in the healing arts. Most take their training in hospitals. As their skills improve, they rise higher and higher through the ranks of the hospital. Her clerics are required to take an oath on her name against using their medical skills to cause harm, and providing healing for anyone who comes to them wounded.
Quests: Bahsemat’s clerics are sent on quests to cure plagues, or clear up the sources of curses. Very seldom are they sent on violent quests, though the goddess does realize that there are certain situations that violence is required.
Prayers: Bahsemat is invoked in a number of prayers, usually said over the sick or wounded. These can range from short cursory blessings to long, detailed pleas for her aid. Another prayer is the lighting of the candles. Most temples and shrines to Bahsemat are equipped with racks of candles. These candles are lit when a person becomes sick, with a short prayer. After that, a new candle is lit each day, until the patient has either recovered or died.
Temples: Bahsemat’s temples usually double as hospitals and healing houses. Those hospitals that aren’t temples themselves usually feature at least a small shrine to Bahsemat. All shrines and temples to bahsemat center around a central figure, a statue of bahsemat, traditionally made of ivory or marble.
Rites: Bahsemat has two main rites. The first is the gathering of faith. This is the more common of the two. Usually, a cleric or other follower of Bahsemat will gather the friends and family of the patient at their bedside, and lead them in an extended prayer for the well-being of the patient. The second is more solemn, the blessing of passing. When a patient passes away, a cleric of bahsemat says a prayer over them, praying for their swift passage into the welcoming arms of bahsemat.
Heralds and Allies: Bahsemat’s herald is a powerful avoral cleric. Her allies are guardinals as of all sorts.
Favored Weapon: Unarmed Strike
- Atarah, the Radiant Maiden, takes the form of a beautiful, lithe-muscled woman. Her most distinctive feature is her hair, which flows behind her as though she were constantly looking into a stiff wind. This hair ripples with color, waves of red, orange, yellow, green, blue, purple, black, white, and every color in-between rolling through it from root to tip, always changing in pattern. She wears light, silvery armor that constantly shifts and warps over her body, changing in style, design, and decoration. In her hands, she carries a long, sinuous chain, one end terminating in a sickle-like blade, and the other ending is a dense, heavy weight. The weight and sickle shift materials as the situation demands. As the situation call for it, her physical form dissolves, her body becoming a tornado of scintillating colors and powerful, chaotic energy.
Atarah presides over Arcadia, a vast, vibrant realm, where life and energy intermix freely. Great, free-floating islands drift through the plane, her follower’s souls soaring freely through the air alongside the glowing, flickering forms of her eladrin. Each island is drastically different from each other in terms of terrain, climate, and season. One may be an autumn forest where her followers frolic among the brilliantly-colored fallen leaves. Another, a green, rolling field dotted with spring flowers and shade-trees. A third could be a pristine winter wonderland. Others hold still more exotic locales, such as deserts, jungles, even otherworldly, alien terrain.
Atarah cooperates easily with Bahsemat, who’s generosity is an inspiration, even if she‘s not as much fun as Sargon, whose hedonistic ways can be a bit unsavory at times, but knows how to throw a party. She does not, however, get along with Belenus, whose strictness grates her, even if she can respect his honor and strength. Angra Bahram is an incredibly powerful warrior, and even if she dislikes his use of that power, the fact that he has triumphed over such adversity is enough to earn her grudging respect. Xelorut has all the infuriating stiffness of Belenus, but none of the benevolence that she respected. Azazel’s sleazy nature and his constant betrayals paint him as an underhanded coward in her mind. But her most destructive fury is reserved for the cowardly, conniving whore, Balamati. Hiding behind her magic and her servants while wreaking terrible, terrible destruction on the innocent, the dark lady is her sworn foe.
Portfolio: Freedom, change, conviction
Domains: Chaos, Competition, Courage, Good, Liberation, Pride, War, Wrath
Cleric Training: Clerics of Atarah are trained on a one-on one basis, with a single more experienced cleric training one or two prospective clerics at a time. The experienced cleric tailors the training to the strengths of the individual. Thus, the clerics of Atarah are more diverse than most groups. Atarah’s doctrine stresses the strength of a follower’s conviction over the strict adherence to her word. This training produces a good number of paladins of freedom, favored souls, and other unconventional brands of divine power.
Quests: Atarah sends her faithful to correct grievous wrongs. Breaking the control of tyrants and warlords, attacking slavers, and disrupting oppression. Atarah only rarely calls for quests personally, instead urging her followers to follow their own convictions to strike down injustice.
Prayers: Prayers to Atarah are most popular among prisoners and slaves, usually silent pleas for freedom from their bonds. But these prayers aren’t the only ones that reach the radiant maiden’s ears. Chaotic warriors and freedom fighters pray to her for strength, and sorcerers and war priests pray to tap into her raw, untamable energy.
Temples: Temples to Atarah are rarely as large or impressive as the temples of Belenus, but there are usually several of them in a city, small shrines devoted to the Radiant Maiden, either in small buildings or as miniature personal shrines. The temples are less busy than others, as Atarah doesn’t demand slavish, ritualized prayer and worship. Her faithful keep her ideals in their hearts, and she receives her prayer in their thoughts.
Rites: Atarah doesn’t have many standardized rites, and those she does have tend to vary widely from place to place, as each new master teaches his students slightly differently. However, Atarah is not a stickler for detail. As long as the intent is there, she will gladly provide her blessing.
Heralds and Allies: Atarah’s herald is a powerful eladrin warrior-mage. Her allies are eladrin of many types.
Favored Weapon: Atarah’s favored weapon is the sickle-and-chain.
A androgynous figure, wearing fine silks and jewlery. Long, black, silky hair and eyes that change color with it's moods. Carries a whip that writhes like a serpent in one hand and an apple in the other. Forms are etrememly temorary, and it changes names, faces, and almost every other feature of it's body on a whim. Delights in hedonism and physical pleasure. Utterly unpredictable.
- Angra Bahram, the Blood Lord, takes the form of a humongous demon with blood red skin. Below the neck, his hulking form is completely covered in thick, layered black plates, armor that shows it’s use with countless scratches, gouges, and dents. Each and every plate is studded with short spikes. From the elbow down on each arm, the black armor is coated with blood which constantly drips from the spikes and claws of his gauntlets. His facial features are strong, but rough and scarred. Two long horns curve up out of his forehead and arc back over his short-cropped hair. Gold, slitted eyes glow from beneath a heavy brow. Hovering above his head is the Crown of Angra, a black iron crown of ornate, shifting design that constantly sheds a foul, reddish light. The upper rim is studded with a dozen short, crimson spikes evenly spaced.
The Crown of Angra is not merely a symbolic item, or even an artifact. The crown is a sentient mass of divinity, lacking in any true form beyond the constantly changing crown. The Crown chooses the most powerful demon of the Abyss as the Angra. Usually, it remains with one host until the demon in question is slain or defeated in combat, in which case the Crown transfers to the victor and they become the next Angra, empowered and transformed by the divine power of the Crown. However, even this is not guaranteed, and if any demon becomes more powerful than the current Angra, the Crown will know, and transfer to them. The Crown cannot be removed by any means unless it chooses to take a different host, and hovers immovably in the air about a foot above the head of the Angra. On becoming the Angra, the host demon is often changed physically, given a form more suited to it’s battle tactics and preferences. The demons have taken on a tradition of renaming themselves when they claim the title of Angra. Angra Bahram has held the title of Angra for longer than any demon before him, but his long term has only served to give his multitude of enemies time to rally against him.
The Angra rules over the Abyss, if anything can be said to truly rule over the Abyss. The Abyss consists of several hundred layers, each vastly different from all the others, but all horrible and maddening in their own ways. At the very bottom of the abyss, the 666th layer, sits the throne of the Angra, encased in a titanic fortress of iron, blood, and bone, the remains of those who have failed to claim the Crown impaled on stakes of iron outside it‘s wall, forming a forest of undying usurpers, forever trapped in endless agony, their screams of pain forever echoing through the layer. The multitude of layers are all studded with portals that connect to other layers of the abyss, some work both ways, others only one direction. Some planes are controlled by powerful demon lords, others are massive battlefields where demons clash amongst each other or against incursions by the forces of other planes.
It is said that were the massive legions of the Abyss ever truly rallied together, they would easily overtake all seven of their rivals. But the divisions in the abyss run deep and constant infighting is a drain on their power. Angra Bahram enjoys the wild celebrations of Sargon’s plane, and often will go there to celebrate after a particularly enjoyable battle. Azazel’s forces have often helped Bahram maintain control over the abyss, and as such, the two have a good relationship. Bahram can respect Atarah, whose strength and freedom are values he respects, but her goody-two-shoes attitude is just too repulsive for him to tolerate. Similarly, Bahram respects the cruelty and evil of Balamati, but finds her rationed, reasoned approach and her obsession with rules and regulations insufferable. Bahsemat shares all the goody-two-shoes attitude of Atarah, but without the wild side he enjoys. Still, her hospitals are open to all, and many of his wounded troops go there to be healed. Xelorut is impossible to tolerate, his obsession with fate and destiny infuriates the Blood Lord, who takes every opportunity to foil his plots. But Bahram’s most hated foe is Belenus, who combines the worst of both. The insufferable tyrant constantly preaches his doctrine of slavish worship and ‘goodness’. Bahram adores the chance to crush his troops and foil his plans.
Portfolio: Cruelty, Competition, Strength
Domains: Chaos, Competition, Evil, Pride, Strength, Suffering, War, Wrath
Cleric Training: Clerics of Bahram usually are either trained by tribal shamans in the more savage lands, or trained in secretive underground societies in cities and towns. Either way, the clerics are taught that strength is everything. Power is to be used to subjugate those around you, and only the strong will survive and thrive. A prospective cleric must murder someone and drink their blood to become a true cleric of Angra Bahram. The more powerful and dangerous the target, the better. Bonus points for killing your own mentor or someone close to you.
Quests: Bahram tells his clerics to grow strong, subjugate others, and fight his enemies on Tryor. Beyond that, he leaves the exact tasks up to his clergy. Most commonly, they prefer short and sweet operations, like ambushing Belenus’ cleric patrols, or slaughtering innocent villages.
Prayers: Prayers to Angra Bahram are usually short, and quite often take the form of battle cries. Some dedicate their kills to Bahram, some of the more powerful clerics even going so far as to curse their blades in such a way to send the souls of those slain by it directly to the abyss, to suffer for eternity in the chaotic wastes.
Temples: Angra Bahram’s temples are usually small and portable, or otherwise concealable. Very few societies are welcoming to those who worship the Angra. Some are put to death, others are exiled. Usually, a shrine to Angra Bahram involves the blood or bones of a sentient creature, preferably one that you’ve killed personally.
Rites: Angra Bahram has few standardized rites, but most of those he does have involve ritual sacrifice, corruption of the innocent, or blood, or some combination of the three.
Heralds and Allies: Angra Bahram’s herald is an immensely powerful demonic warrior. His allies include demons of all types, though he generally favors warriors.
Favored Weapon: Spiked Gauntlet
A handsome male, clad in light, flexible armor of black steel, he grins like he knows something you don’t. In one hand he carries a blackened rapier, the other wreathed in purple flames. His long black hair blows in the wind, and red eyes glint with malicious intent.
A seductive female with red shin and a pair of shirt horns emerging from her forehead. Her long black hair is tied tightly behind her head in a bun, and golden, slitted eyes glint ominously. She carries a blackened staff, the tip decorated with a geometric head, a glowing purple orb set into it. She’s clad in a long, black cloak that rests over he shoulders. Beneath it, she wears a black corset, a choker with a snarling demon’s face set right over her throat, and black, armored gauntlets and boots.
A towering colossus of silvery metal, clad in bronze armor. It wields a huge scepter ending in a gyroscopic globe of gears, all constantly turning within others. In the other hand, it carries a huge bronze shield. It’s face is perfectly smooth, devoid of all features. Every inch of the construct’s skin, armor, shield and scepter is finely etched with minute runes, pictographs, letters and numbers. It is said that the god’s skin bears the entire history of the universe, past present and future, etched into it, but those who try too hard to read it go mad.