Categories
Crowa Religion

Lich in Berwickshire

Lich in Berwickshire

From the journal of Epona, Rose of Crowa

1. Its name should not be said as it summons its power to the speaker

2. It had disappeared but came back in the 6th month of 995. It had been belived gone in s.992 but he was released again by the party that retrieved the Scales of Sidhe. A demon called Yosseroth did ritual on a book and the lych reappeared. Sir Jhani foresaw this but judged the scales of sidhe of enough value to do this. the book given by a demon – the knowledge demon which according to Obediah had helped before [andthrax became lich due to treachery but was eventually destroyed by a scheme of eldritch happenstance, revenants of the original party helped.] why did the knowledge demon set this up?

3. It can cast magics at great distance.

4. It is served by a wraith who claims that his power is greater than that of the gods.

5. The lich tries to corrupt people to his service to do this he blocks all sense of the god and tries to persuade the victim to his service when he tried this with Blodeuwedd of Sidhe, she refused, she was magically forced to attack us.

6. A Guard named Arran was not so strong. He yielded, his heart burst out yet he stood up and attacked us, after he was taken down the lich appeared to force us to heal him. The guard then spoke of the power of the lich.

7. This lich can also strip the skin of a mans leg at a long distance. This requires more healing then a mere bandage.

8. It can cast illusions, can make a man belive that he has worms in his heart and make things appear in wounds, and make people appear to look strange. It made the symbol of my faith appear to bleed.

9. Whilst I was wounded he appeared before me and pulled out my heart and squeezed it before my eyes. This happened also to Vincent of Tralda. I also saw this image in the dream plane.

10. His name spoken on the wind as far afield as esca summoned by a minion in vicinity of a Longstorian shrine with a holy book. The minion was killed for its pains, wanted holy item – then lich tried to kill others – enchanted poisoned diseased sword. got the book. What was this book? Some relic of Longstor?

11. I went to lirron to prevent an undead army being raised and given to it. It needed the banner of the last legion of axir to destroy the white witch had been the clan leader – we succeeded.

12. He can prevent priests from casting magicks by choking them, this may be him or may be one of his wraiths.

13. A man named Tosca appears to have some information he comes up now and again, he supports the lich, ogre skeletons are his.

14. Gromit challenged the lich – it declined to fight and magically forced Gromit to set fire to the local shrine which was totally destroyed.- the fire was uncontrollable. Gromit given a quest to find knowledge of how to destroy the lich. Also rumoured that the lich was connected with the incident at the rolborian shrine where two men attempted to destroy the shrine, but were killed by H.F. Simon.

15. After attacks where book was gained, a man came and helped to heal. He remembered lich as power hungry man
 Would be found where lich was – no love
 Spoke of necessity to destroy – said no-one has seen full power
 Would recognise him + should not be named (deser. of tim, cloak, hood up) was _____from the lich – his powers are undead
 Said that he would be around when the lich was – he wishes that the lich should not have it all its own way.

16. There is a mission to mountain ebb territory tonight to recover the grimblade. If successful then this is the first step to destroying the lich. If not then chances are reduced as Mortex will die if she fails and only a priest of karach can recover this item.

17. Rituals done to deny power of land to lich. This suggested by the dragon. This seemed to work yet it angered him and his minions have destroyed the shrines of Newcroft. The undead could enter holy land – the Scales of Sidhe saved that temple, no other was spared. Hopefully he is now weak enough to be destroyed. Gromit was lost to the mission, these undead have influenced the area terribly since then.

Categories
Crowa Religion

A Vision of Swords

A Vision of Swords

Primate Elspeth

The vision began with the time I received the Crowablade but I felt the presence of My Lady as she gifted me Her Most Holy Sword… I felt pride and honour as I received it – perhaps even more than I did on the real occasion… However, the scene changed and I was kneeling before (I believe) The Emperor of Sharda and he gave me his sword – a massive two-handed sword that throbbed with power as I took it… demons fell on their knees in praises to me… I was to lead them into battle, we waited for a sign… After a time around the camping army, seven rifts appeared in the earth… 2 of these were filled with liquid, the others empty… My army divides itself around 4 of the 5 empty portals in waiting… I left with a hound and slept, the hound watched over me, the sword laid upon my chest…

I knew the sword was the Emperor’s sword and its power was absolute and could slay a God…

When I awoke I had a sense of waiting, the army and I… My hand was in pain and burned across the palm where I held the great golden sword…

Categories
Religion

The Gods and Their Impact on Our Lives

The Gods and Their Impact on Our Lives

By Novice Logue Colton of Kharach, Summereve MVIII

The Journey of Life

All of us on this world of Arda tread upon a journey created by the Gods. In this document I hope to explain the journey and the impact the Light of the Seven has upon our lives.
First, we are born, which is itself the greatest gift given to us by the Lady Vleybor. She gives us the spark of life, and helps to nurture us as we grow. She encourages the crops upon which we feed, and helps the harvest grow strong and bountiful, as well as granting healing powers when we are ill or hurt.
As we grow up, we are helped in many different ways by the Gods, often without us thinking about it.
The Lady Crowa guards us in our sleep, and ensures that we can live with courage in the face of adversity. She grants us strength to do what is right, to stand firm in the face of danger to protect those we love.
The Lord Rolbor grants us the knowledge of trade, allowing us to share what we have with others, receiving what others have to give in return. This enriches our lives, allowing knowledge and wisdom to be shared and built upon, and allowing the comfort to enjoy ourselves.
The Lord Longstor looks over the wilderness, ensuring that there is always majesty in living things, and that the cycle of the seasons upon which we rely is steady and unchanging.
Lady Tralda shows us that in everything there is luck, and offers her sheltering wing to those who would feel uncomfortable elsewhere.
And throughout our journey, the All Father Lord Sidhe watches over us, teaching us justice, truth, honour, and above all, that the balance must be maintained in all things, lest the world spiral out of control into destruction and darkness.
Lastly, we die. All of us die, it is the fate of us mortals. For how can we appreciate life without the knowledge of death? And it is with death that my Lord Kharach provides his gift to us. He shepherds and cares for the souls of the fallen, ensuring that those who come to him in his halls are ensured of restful slumber for eternity, either with him, or with one of the Seven. So the Seven have an impact on all of us, from the day we are born through to the day we die, and beyond.

Aiding and Sheltering the People of Ithron and Arda

As true followers of the Seven, it is our duty to teach the ways of the Seven to those not yet in the Light of the Seven. Many people in Ithron will not choose to follow one of the Seven, but will venerate the Pantheon of the Seven as a whole, and they should be encouraged and cared for.
Some, however, will receive the calling to become a lay follower, devoted follower, or even priest of one of the Seven. These people should be supported, whatever faith they choose. For finding the correct religion for the correct follower is far more important than enlarging one’s church at the cost of others.
Whilst encouraging people to join the Church of Kharach is most import to me, I do not baulk at explaining the pantheon of the Seven, and the impact of the Gods of the Seven on our lives, to those who wish to know. It is our religious duty as priests.

Standing Resolute in the Face of Heresy

As there are the Seven Gods of Light, so each of Lord Sidhe’s Light children has a Darker brother or sister.
Now, these Dark Gods, or the Dark Six as they are often known, are true Gods, Children of Sidhe, and should be respected as such. However, they encourage the darker side of our nature, and worship of them should be heavily discouraged.
Within Ithron it is considered Heresy to worship the Dark Six, and by extension undermine the works of the Seven Gods of Light. Below I have described to the best of my knowledge the views and practices of the heretics, so that they may better be destroyed.
The Church of Beqwifus, Lady of Pain and Suffering, is currently in disarray at the time of this document, Summereve MVIII. Late in Shielding this year, Bequwifus was found guilty of breaking the Pact, and was cut off from her followers by the Keeper of the Seven Secrets. This shocked the religious community, but I am only assured that this is possible due to the direct intervention of the Emperor of Sharda himself, working through a demonic creature known as a Sablewalker. What manner of creature this is, I know not.
A recent mission of which I was privileged to take resulted in the Heretical Primate of Bequwifus and his Faithful were defeated atop the Mountain of Rockholme by the Primate of Kharach, Chaplain of the Griffin Order and Acting Primate of Crowa, and the Lady Mayoress and General of the Mercenaries Guild. I was there to bolster the forces, and we sent many souls of the followers of the Lady of Pain on to the Halls of Kharach.
The Church of Beqwifus dress in red, the colour of blood and suffering, and are often wearing bloody robes holding the tools of their heretical acts. I understand that their spells include being able to grant the pain of Bequwifus, as well as the ability to cause painful wounds in the arms and legs of their victims. I have also heard that higher level priests can take on the form of the skeleton, to allow cutting blades to score the skin, causing pain, but stopping the blade from going further. The holy symbol of the Church is of a scorpion.
The Church of Abraxis venerate the Lord of Slaughter, and wear white to allow the blood and gore of their enemies to be visible as a testament to their faith. They also ware much armour, with the Priests wearing as much or more than most knights! Their holy symbol is an axe.
The Church of Krygon worship the Mother of Monsters, and often wear the hides and furs of mighty, corrupted creatures they have slain. They believe that strength through survival of the fittest is the only way to better themselves, and this is often achieved through the corruption of natural creatures. Their divine prayers can cause a fatal disease, amongst other things, curable only by a swift death. The holy symbol of Krygon is a spiral.
The Church of Fygol worships the Lady of Greed, and her followers wear the richest, gaudiest clothing they can find, although often these are simply discarded once used. Their divine prayers centre upon waste, and can shatter weapons and warp shields, and their holy symbol is of a golden coin.
The Church of Githas venerate the Lord of Vanity, and dress often in Green. Although they share some penchant for healing the wounded, especially if the wounded are attractive, they are quick to spitefully kill any they consider better looking then themselves. The holy symbol of Githas is a mirror.
The Church of Sereklan the trickster is the most difficult to describe. The followers of the Lord of lies never reveal who they are, and often successfully masquerade as members of Ithronian society, including Knights and Priests of the Seven, even using their holy symbols. Finding them out is difficult, as they can deny their faith, unlike followers of the other Gods. I have heard in passing that a High Priest of the All Father can reveal someone’s true faith, although I have never seen this done. The holy symbol of the Church of Sereklan is a two toned mask.
Needless to say, it is the duty of every follower of the Seven to root out and destroy the heretics that sadly lie within out midst, poisoning the citizens of Ithron against the true Light of the Seven. In some cases, especially if they have not yet taken faith, heretics can be taught the error of their ways and forged into followers of the Seven, but in most cases the only thing to do with heretics is their swift and painless execution.

A Priest’s Work is Never Done

Sadly, a priest’s work is never done. We flawed mortals have made Arda a flawed place, and the struggle against the followers of the Dark Six, of the Ravages of demons, and of the endless threat of the Abomination of that that is the Plague of Undeath continues.
But with the true faith of the Light of the Seven, we followers of the Seven will stand firm in this, the Holy Land.

Novice Logue Colton,
Priest of the Ever Merciful Lord Kharach, Keeper of the Halls of the Slain.
Summereve MVIII

Categories
Religion

The History of the Gods

The History of the Gods

By Father Logue Colton of Kharach, Shoring MIX

In the beginning

In the beginning, Sidhe existed, and summoned his powers to create the Heavens of Elysium. Yet, despite the wonder of the place, it was empty. So he thought into being six children, and each would have its own portfolio within the Pantheon of the Gods.

To Logan, he gave the wild places, of nature both wild and terrible and also calm and friendly.

To Githor, he gave the realm of Life, both healing and perfection.

To Kharifus, he gave Death, both quick and painful.

To Abrowa, he gave Battle, both the bloody slaughter and the noble sacrifice.

To Rogal, he gave Wealth, of trade and knowledge and possessions beyond imagination.

To Serelda, he gave Fate, luck and quick wits and quicker words.

For himself he retained truth, justice and keeping the balance between things.

The Creation of the World

Sidhe then created the world on which we live and asked Logan to help create the wilderness, and the creatures who live in it. Logan then created the Alshanti to shepherd the peoples and teach them the ways of the gods.

Sidhe, Logan, and several other of the gods created the peoples of the world. Humans, dwarves, elves, Halflings were created neutral, so that they would have the free choice to follow whom they wished.

The Split

People started worshipping the gods, but just as there are good and evil people, there are lighter and darker sides of the Gods, with the exception of the All Father, who was balanced and neutral.

Those worshipping Kharifus quickly split into two factions. Some worshipped Kharifus as the god of the dead, one to be venerated as the merciful Lord who gathers and protects the souls of the dead. Others chose to worship him through bloody and violent sacrifices, where the dying were to be tortured over days.

In truth, Kharifus was both of these, with each faction worshipping him in their own way. Eventually, because mortals are flawed, war started between the two factions of the Church of Kharifus. Brother fought Sister, and the Church tore itself apart. Those caught in the middle ground were recruited, or killed.

And with the other Churches similar happened. Followers of Abrowa fought over the right to Slaughter and the right to Protect. Followers of Logan fought over the dispute between the balance of the cycle and the ideal of survival of the fittest. Soon, all of the Churches were in dispute.

And then Sidhe, in his wisdom acted. He could bear it no longer that the followers of his children fought due to the perceived failings of their choices. And so he smashed the great artefact, the Mirror of the Heavens, and where there was once one, there were now two.

Kharifus became Kharach, God of the Dead, and Bequwifus, Goddess of Pain and Suffering.

Abrowa became Abraxis, God of Slaughter, and Crowa, the Goddess of Battle.

Logan became Longstor, God of Nature, and Krygon, Goddess of Corruption.

Rogal became Rolbor, God of Trade, and Fygol, Goddess of Greed.

Githor became Githas, God of Vanity, and Vleybor, Goddess of Healing.

Serelda became Sereklan, God of Lies, and Tralda, Goddess of Luck.

The First Holy War

With the split between Light and Dark, the followers of the light Gods lived in peace, but the followers of the Dark Gods travelled to the Lands of the Konn and began to dominate the people there. For many years they slaughtered and enslave the Konnish people before a powerful scholar learned that the Gods pulled their powers from the fabric of Arda. He learned how to do the same, and taught his followers the same. The First Holy War ground to a halt as the two sides became balanced.

These Konnish, noble in their fight against the followers of the Dark Six, were the descendants of the demon worshippers that plague the region of the world today. Such is the price of power beyond the Gods.

The Second Holy War

Slowly, the followers of the Darkness became jealous of the peace and harmony enjoyed by the followers of the Light Gods, and so the second Holy War started. During this time, the Six Light Children of Sidhe cemented their divine portfolios, becoming the Gods we know today.

The followers of the Seven fought united, whilst the followers of the Dark Six fought each other for dominion over themselves, and so eventually the Light triumphed over the Darkness.

The Imprisonment of the Dark Six

With the Dark Six defeated, Sidhe asked the Gods of Light for their opinions.

“They must be destroyed,” said Kharach, “for others will raise their banners and follow them.” Others said the same, and soon only Vleybor was left. “No father,” said Vleybor “I hate them but I can not kill them. But this evil must not be allowed to rise again.”

And is his wisdom Sidhe decided that the Dark Six should not be destroyed. For what is the Light without the Darkness to shine against?

And so the Dark Six were instead imprisoned in the Heavens, and the All Father took from all mortals the knowledge of the Dark Six, although the Alshanti were allowed to retain this knowledge. Knowing that their brethren the Elderkin did also, they hunted down their brethren and killed them, the survivors scattering into the deep woods, thus ending the Second Holy war.

The Pact

And for many years, the Seven ruled in the Heavens and the mortals went about their business in Arda, praising the Gods of Light and defeating the demons of Sharda.

And in the year 0, the Pact was re-signed in Saleem. Whilst there are no recorded signings of the Pact before this time, there is evidence that the Pact signed M years ago was not the first.

This Pact is a contract between the Gods and their eternal enemies, the demonic denizens of Sharda, subjects of the Demonic Emperor of Sharda. The Pact ensures that neither God nor Demon can travel to Arda of their own power, although both can have agents on this plane. Therefore the duty of all those who follow the Light of the Seven is to root out and destroy those who conspire with the foul demons.

The Nameless One

From the time of the Imprisonment of the Dark Six, there have been only a few who knew of the existence of the Dark Gods trapped in their Prison, foremost amongst them the Alshanti.

During the year DCCCCLXXXVII, a figure appeared, calling itself the Jester. This creature, who we now know to be Sereklan, led the tribes of Llamanisu to raid and conquer Ithron as a prelude to breaking the Dark Gods out of the prison in which Sidhe had placed them in. Eventually four Gods escaped and merged together to form the Nameless One, a being of evil divine power.

And so the Nameless One and it’s new followers caused much woe. For never before in the last thousand years had the people of Ithron faced such a threat as the followers of this new Dark God.

The Pact is signed again

As the year DCCCCLXXXIX came to a close, it was discovered that the Pact would have to be re-signed. As a result, the Nameless One was split once more, and the other Dark Gods were freed, as only the full thirteen Primates of the Gods could sign the pact. Anything else would break the Pact, and war of a scale not seen would descend upon the plane of mortals.

Thus the Pact was signed by the representatives of the thirteen Gods and the demons of Sharda on the fields of Haddingsbury. Thus Ithron became the Holy Land.

The War of the Gods

In the year MVIII, Bequwifus was judged to have broken the Pact. Her crime was to strengthen her followers with the creation of a great eye above her Catherdral near Fernham, and her punishment was the stripping of her power for a year and a day. The Keeper of Seven Secrets commanded this act, and it was carried out by a demon powerful enough to kill the Gods.

Whether this sparked the War is unclear, but the Gods have now been fighting for many months, their armies in the Heavens slaughtering each other. On Arda, Heretics and Faithful alike have been fighting to gain ascendance over the other, and wounded servants of the Gods fall to Arda as falling stars.

And during all this, Sidhe waits, keeping the Balance and not wishing to show favour over one group or the other.

The Communion

It now seems that a Holy Communion is required, that a meeting of representatives or ‘Paragons’ of each of the Gods are required to meet during the last days of Shielding. And during this meeting they shall find ways to agree a ceasefire, or surely all shall be lost as the Heavens themselves are brought down.

As of this date, the IXth Shoring MIX, there is much hope that the War in the Heavens can end. For now, Lord Kharach has commanded that we continue the fight, that we kill and Lay to Rest any Heretics that we can, and that Light should succeed over Darkness.

Praise be to the Lord of the Dead,
Praise be to the Seven

Father Colton of Kharach

Categories
Religion

Of Gods and Men, A Theological Essay by Shannen Charwood

Of Gods and Men, A Theological Essay by Shannen Charwood

In the beginning, there was the darkness. Into the darkness came the lord sidhe and he took the darkness and shaped it and created the world. Onto the world he placed man, elves, dwarves and all the other creatures that swarm and multiply across the face of the world. Unto his children he gave dominion over different aspects of the world;
To his son Longstor he gave the dominion of the wilds and the cycle of nature
To his daughter Vleybor the dominion of life and healing
To his son Kharach the dominion of death and the afterlife
To his daughter Crowa the dominion of courage and honorable combat
To his son Rolbor the dominion of trade and generosity
To his daughter Tralda the dominion of luck and fate
To his son Abraxis the dominion of unchecked anger and rage
To his daughter Krygon the dominion of corruption and the unnatural
To his son Sereklan the dominion of lies and trickery
To his daughter Bequifis the dominion of pain and vengeance
To his son Githas the dominion of vanity and false pride
To his daughter Fygol the dominion of greed and selfishness
And over them all Sidhe himself, the eternal judge and point of balance.

Also into the world came the demons, sworn enemies of the gods. Chaos and destruction were their goals, wishing only to tear down the great works of the gods themselves in an orgy of flames and suffering. So from the pit of Sharda did they plan their eternal war against the gods.

This is what the churches would have you believe. That the gods are eternal, omnipotent and omniscient.

They are lying.

History has shown the gods to be far from these things. Witness Kharach and his disfigured face, Longstor with his severed hand and Sereklan who had his eye torn out, was beaten senseless and cast into a prison by mortal hands. Even the gods can suffer and know pain. They are not all powerful.

See how the usurper Hellmourne hid himself from the eyes of the gods. How he plotted and schemed for years before revealing himself. They are not all-knowing.

These are facts of history. They are beyond dispute, ask any learned man and he will tell you the same. I tell you this also, they are not eternal. This plane, this place, existed for thousands of years before the gods came to it. The peoples of this place lived simple, untroubled lives filled with song and happiness untroubled by whims of the gods. It was a time of plenty, a time of learning, a time of peace. Into this time came the gods; interlopers seeking refuge from their war with the demons. Yet even here they were not safe, the demons followed them, hounding them. With them came war, suffering and death to this plane shattering utterly the peace that had been known.

In their desperation, the gods placed mortal man here on this place to act as their proxy warriors. Ever since we have fought and died endlessly at their command, foot soldiers in their war. Through us do they fight their war. Through our sweat, blood and tears do they keep the demon hordes at bay. And why? So that they do not have to suffer themselves. They exist safe in their realm of Elysium secure in the knowledge that men will die by the thousands defending them. This is why you suffer. This is why you must live, toil and die this harsh existence. All to serve the thirteen who set themselves up as gods over men to save their own skins.

I do not deny that the gods are powerful or that they are worthy of respect; the respect that the unarmed man gives to a heavily armed mercenary. Any sane man respects those with the power to strike him down with a word. Neither do I deny that the gods care for their followers. But it is the care of a shepherd for his flock. A shepherd tends to his flock, regards them with care and warmth, eases their pains and heals their hurts. Make no mistake however that when the time comes for a meal to be served he will pick a sheep without remorse and slit its throat with practiced ease.

So it is with the gods. They care for men as a shepherd cares for his sheep and when the time comes to sacrifice Man to serve the god they do so without thinking, without pause and without regret. We are nothing more than animals to them, disposable warriors and servants to be thrown into the bloody fray without end.

Is this the life you want for yourself? Is this the life you want for your children, and their children and their children after them ever onwards into eternity?

Friends it is time we turned as one and cried enough! We want no part in a war that does not concern us. No more will we give our lives to defend those who would not lift a finger to save us. Let me tell you, brothers and sisters, that they are afraid. Afraid of what man could become if he were to take his eyes from them for a moment and realize the power within himself. Why do they instill such hatred of the so-called abomination of undeath into those blinded into following them? Why is it, do you think, that they command their mightiest warriors, the knights, to shun the power of magic?

It is because they fear that which they cannot control. Through magic a man can be reborn more powerful and more alive than they could ever conceive. They call us abominations and destroy us without a second thought for we represent a threat to their dominion over man. They are afraid of power that does not flow from them, that they cannot withdraw on a whim if man gets too powerful or disobeys their desires.

Listen not to the lies with which they seek to control you. Open your eyes and see for yourself the self-serving hypocrisy and domination within the churches. Understand how they have manipulated you and mislead you since your very birth. Look and understand that the gift of unlife is not one of eternal torment and damnation but of transcendence from the shackles of mortality and freedom from the domination of the gods. See the mark I bear and know it not as the mark of the dammed but as the mark of the truly free!

I tell you again that the mark of the ex-communicant is not the mark of shame they tell you it is. It is the mark of one who has opened their eyes and seen the truth and been cast out for their impertinence. It is the mark of the truly free man. All of the gods preach that free will is the most important gift given to man yet at every turn they seek to curtail and remove that freedom. Free will is not a gift from the gods given out of their beneficence; it is the inherent birthright of every man, woman and child! It is a birthright that they would strip you of for fear of what you might choose to do with it.

The path to freedom is a long and hard one but those courageous and wise enough to embrace the birthright of men will know what they must do.