Friday, February 21, 2014

[Qutesthaven Preview] Our Grandfather of Water and Wave

Illustration by James "Devin Night" Hazelett

Our Grandfather of Water and Wave

“Listen and heed the call of Our Grandfather of Water and Wave, be not distracted by other mortals, for they cannot determine another’s destiny, especially your own. You must learn to sail in high winds, and abandon all hope that the sea will ever rest. You must stop standing on the shore and staring out at the water, if you do not, you shall never cross it. ” – Shipwright Sulgen speaking the ritual remarks of the Night of Sacrifice   

“We give thanks to Our Grandfather of Water and Wave. For today, the waves have not flooded our homes. We give thanks to Our Grandfather of Water and Wave. For today, the monsters of the deep have not sunk our vessels. We give thanks to Our Grandfather of Water and Wave. For today, the winds are with us and our sails are whole.”  -The Thrice Given Prayer of The Mariner’s Basin.  

Alignment: CN
Portfolio:  Fishing, Lakes, Ocean, Rain, Rivers, Streams, Sailing, Sailors, Sea Creatures, Sea Storms, and Water
Worshipers: Fathers, Fishermen, Grandfather, Pearl Divers, Privateers, Sailors, Sea Creatures, Whalers.
Aliases: Sovereign of Waters, Master of the Sea, Unending Wave, Unmoved Whale, Raging Shark, Magnificent Dolphin
Domains: Chaos, Destruction, Travel, Water, Weather
Subdomains: Catastrophe, Exploration, Oceans, Rage, Storms
Superior:  Our Queen of Wisdom and Mercy 
Allies: Our Father of Star and Sky, Our Grandmother Earth, Our Mother of Madness
Foes: Their Dark Lord of Fire
Symbol: A sea creature in front of a wave.

The churches of Our Grandfather of Water and Wave collect the outpourings of his worship, and I have found them in nearly every seaport and community that exists near a large expanse of water. The followers pray for rain, seek blessings for sailors and anglers; and ask favor be granted upon new water-going vessels (and I would never set sail upon a vessel that had not requested such favor). For particularly important and epic journeys, they make elaborate sacrifices in the water, cutting open bulls, and letting the blood and water commingle. This is to symbolize that all things owe their life to the water. Sacrifices though are not a common practice. The sacred orders are there only to aid the faithful and I can attest offer guidance. They proclaim they are not necessary for the faithful to form a bond with Our Sovereign of Waters,  for the worship of Our Unending Wave is extremely personal. In addition, while the Basins are a place of devotion and prayer, these temples of Our Master of the Sea are not somber, quite locations, they are home to untamed roaring celebrations accompanied by hard drink and often other carnal activities. They are like Our Unmoved Whale both wild and serene.

The most prominent temple to Our Magnificent Dolphin in Questhaven is the Mariner’s Basin, which is located partly on an actual tidal basin at the edge of the Quay’s docks. They collect massive tithes and sacrifices for their work, along with the fees from the privateers they organize for the Questor’s Society. This grants them a great deal of available wealth though not as much as the Great Church of the Pantheon. The Mariner’s Basin is more powerful secularly than it is spiritually due to effective control over the city’s access to the sea. I will tell you that the rumors I hear, speak to the corruption of the clergy due to this power and wealth, but from my investigations they have not grown so bold, nor so arrogant as to challenge the power of the Questor’s Society.

Questhaven does not have a standing navy, and rather commissions a large fleet of privateers. Commanding each ship are members of the Questor’s Society. The Mariner’s Basin serves a vital function in organizing crews for each of these ships, and many refer to these folk collectively as Privateers of the Raging Shark. If adventure on the high seas is to your liking life as privateer in the service of Questhaven and The Mariner’s Basin is a popular choice.

Hierarchy within the church is unique to each individual basin. At the Mariner’s Basin’s the most powerful cleric who holds the title “Shipwright” rules the Dockhands (clergy)  and he serves as a religious advisor and teacher of the faithful, but spends most of his time dealing with the vast number of tithes, sacrifices, and privateers. The Aesthetics of the Sea (paladin archetype) are utterly uninvolved with the basins short of occasionally captaining a privateer ship; they wander the endless waves doing what they can for everyone but themselves. Finally, the Privateers of the Raging Shark who are a secular mercenary order accept nearly any and all who apply, I myself was a member for a short time before joining the Questor’s Society. 

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