Syn (3.5e Deity)
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|Symbol:||A black skull, shedding a green tear out of the left socket|
|Portfolio:||Defense, Protection, Good, Darkness, Repentance, Psionics|
|Clergy Alignments:||NG, LG, CG|
|Domains:||Good, Darkness, Protection, Mind|
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Syn is known to be a soul of constant repentance and lamentation. He very rarely made mistakes or strayed from the path of righteousness as a child, but when such acts were committed, he immediately made amends. His titles include: The Repentant One, The Guardian Mind, and The Black Light.
Syn was born on the material plane to a lustful mercenary captain and a succubus. Very early in his youth, he realized that his parents were not ideal and pure. His father would task him with collecting food while he would stay at the house, planning his next job, whether a raid on a church because the priest had stolen food for the needy, or guardianship for the politician planning to collect taxes in order to fund his favorite brothel. His parents were unrelentingly cruel, pointing out flaws in Syn's work in anything he tried; combat, art, literature, even simple homemaking, as well as consistent physical abuse. Syn noted that his father simply ordered him to collect food, not to hunt. He would take his two black kukris that he would use to collect berries in the dark swamp that neighbored his house, and would secretly train with a shaman priest (a druid) of Ehlonna and his sister, an ascetic (a monk), in the art of combat, particularly defensive parries and quick strikes. Syn's mentors noted his intense drive and prowess, occasionally manifesting as a strange black psychic energy that surrounds his head while he repents for any failure, even trivial errors, such as a cough while excorising combat forms. After many years of the torment of his parents, as well as the training of his aging mentors, Syn, a mere fifteen years, challenged his father in a duel to the death in order to put a halt to his lustful and bloody existence. His father responded with a hearty laugh and a mouthful of ale: "Ha! You're going to be sorry you ever talked back to me, you worthless shite!" as he walked into his bedroom to equip his plate armor. "You'll never forgive yourself for this spur of idiocy, you dim-witted lunatic. You'll be bleeding before you even raise those toothpicks that you call blades." Syn was unfettered by the harsh words coming from his own flesh and blood. He stepped outside without a word, only a small tear out of his left eye. "Oh boy!" his mother giggled. "The little piggy is weeping! How does it feel to stare death right in the face? Hey, when Nerull comes to take your bloody soul, make sure he gives your good eye to Vecna! Ha!" Syn met his father outside, fifteen feet from each other. His father proudly wore his half plate, complete with a heavy mace and a heavy shield, painted with the uncleaned blood of his many victims. "Last chance to back out, boy. Maybe even earn my forgiveness." Syn shook his head, and raised his kukris. His father charged with a barbaric roar, wildly swinging the mace to his son, only to be halted by Syn's blades cutting his arms. As the blood fell and the muscles tore, the proud warrior stared at his son to see a tear drop from his eye. Syn spoke as his father could feel the muscles in his body dwindling, and those of his son engorging with black and green light. "Many mistakes I have made... For those, I repent. This act is not one of them." Syn evaded a wild swing from the mace and embedded his blades into his father's eyes. The blood dropped like tears as the limp man roared in pain. "Forgive me, son! Spare me, please!" Syn closed his eyes. "I forgive you father, but i do not forget." The blades dissected the man's skull as Syn pulled his blades up. His mother watched in horror. "You spineless cur! That was dirty! You'll live with this act for the rest of your pitiful life!" The succubus' arms began to wave as purple energy formed in her hands, launching it at her son's face. Syn turned away and sheathed his blades, as the purple beam was launched away by a black veil surrounding him. He left the house with only these words. "I am sorry, mother."
For the next few years, Syn would travel, defending innocents from injustice, and lamenting in place of others. This would lead him to be an agent of good, and at long last, a god of purity and goodness.
Syn is infamous among good-aligned deities for his appearance. He wears a dark green outfit, tightly fighting clothing that house a small amount of padding to protect from the elements. His shoulders hold a black torn cape, crowned by his holy symbol perched upon his left shoulder, radiating a dark green light. His face is often hidden by shadow, but has been seen as a young, clean shaven man with black hair that reaches his shoulderblades. He often appears with a tear falling from his left eye. Syn has a lean physique, unheard of among strength-based warriors such as Kord and Pelor. This asthetic often results in others mistaking him for an evil deity.
Syn is known to fight with his two kukris, Repentence and Rememberance, identifying heavily with his "forgive, but do not forget" ideology. Repentance is a +5 Holy Evil Outsider Bane Kukri of Defending, and Rememberance is a +5 Holy Evil Outsider Bane Kukri of Warning
Syn's followers are always taught to repent their misdoings publicly, often holding services in temples strictly for that purpose. In addition, he teaches that to defend the life of another is the ultimate penance for a misdoing, which often results in his more devout followers putting their lives in significant danger in order to protect another. Very often, militarized followers of Syn engage in suicide missions, seeing it as the ultimate defense of others, as well as a great penance. Often, such warriors are honored as some of the greatest followers of Syn. Some even tell that Syn accepts these souls, as long as they are pure and repentant, into his private armory as part of his Blacklight Guard, his great missionaries of penance.
Syn teaches the use of lamentation and repentance, as well as darkness, as an atmosphere for meditation and defense of innocents. This philosophy of darkness puts him at constant odds with Pelor, god of the sun. Syn uses the darkness as a meditative tool in order to lament any acts of misjustice committed in the world. He repents for the crimes of mankind, even though he had no hand in these misdeeds. He weeps for those who are mistreated in the material plane.
Clergy and Temples
Syn accepts all good-aligned clerics. These clerics prepare their spells by ritual lamentation and weeping. When a cleric of Syn commits even the most trivial mistake, such as stuttering during a sermon, they must perform an act of ritual penance. Normally, the cleric is struck with a merciful weapon in a public ceremony, normally held at dusk in front of the many followers and clergy at the temple. This ceremony is typically started with the lamenting party announcing their misdeed(s), and being handed the weapon to be used. They weep and strike themselves one time per misdeed. The congregation then stands and weeps as an act of prayer as the lamenting party is healed of their wounds as a metaphor for their misdeeds. It is not uncommon for the lamenting party to fall unconscious due to the damage they deal to themselves. It is because of this that most clerics of Syn follow this ritual every night, as humans are not perfect.
Traveling clerics of Syn often do not follow this ritual, due to the dangers it presents. Instead, they dedicate themselves to protecting their companions and consider an enemy striking them as an equivalent ritual penance.
A non-clerical follower of Syn follows a slightly different ritual. The typical mass provided by priests of Syn starts with a short tale of lamentation in the local area, and how the community may work to defend the other members of the local community. Next, the priest calls upon a fellow priest to strike him for the misdeed. Commonly, the priests count down from ten, and a few members of the congregation are expected to rush to the defense of the priest to be struck. They leap in front of the incoming nonlethal blow in order to defend the priest. The follower who is struck is healed and honored, as the rest of the congregation weeps for the sins of the world. The penultimate stage requires members to line up and confess acts of misdeeds to the priest. The priest weeps for the misdeeds, and the follower follows suit. Upon completion of the ritual, the priests encourage the followers of Syn to defend others and repent for the misdeeds of man.
Temples of Syn are extremely dark. When sermons are not held, the temple is dimly lit. During sermons, a capable caster may cast darkness, or a priest extinguishes all the torches in the temple to create an aura of pitch black darkness.
Many followers of Syn are psionic in some way. Syn himself is told to be a Psychic Warrior, and many who can manifest psionic powers are seen as blessed in the eyes of those who worship Syn.
Common worship of Syn is extraordinarily rare in areas where Pelor is a major presence. Syn is a god of darkness, an opposing force to Pelor's portfolio of Light and the Sun.
Syn is a member of the D&D pantheon. He lives in an armory in a mountain of Eronia, a layer of Elysium. Syn finds peace here. The violent weather represents his lamentation of man's misdeeds. He resides in the Hall of Weeping Darkness, where the Blacklight Guard congregate. These outsiders are his agents on the material plane. They defend the innocent where Syn finds it most appropriate, while Syn attempts to overthrow the evil deities, particularly Nerull. Syn believes that the darkness is an atmosphere where penance can be be performed, and Nerull blasphemes the use of the darkness as a tool of murder.
Syn keeps to himself, but he is on good terms with most good deities, particularly Ehlonna. Kord notes that Syn is physically weaker than most deities, but his true strength is his speed and his mind. Bahamut enjoys the company of Syn, particularly his intolerance of evil.
More notably, Syn has a non-hostile feud with Pelor. Syn uses the darkness as an atmosphere for his lamentations, while Pelor, god of the Sun vows to destroy darkness. They also inhabit the same plane, which often results in heated, but never violent debates. While the two are not on especially good terms, they have fought side-by-side in order to fend off a crazed Erythnul who invaded Elysium.