Alethia

Alethia’s symbol is the crown of resolve, at once a diadem of authority and a weapon.
Aspects: Resolve, Law, Cruelty Domains: Forge, Knowledge, Life
Common Follower Alignment: Lawful (All) Place of Power: Throne rooms, castles, sports fields
Other Names: The High Queen, Mother of Mountains Spouse: Selnoir

Description:

When Compassion held Mab in the dream world, she realized that it would take all of her attention to keep her there, leaving her no time to look after the rest of the universe. Out of need and resolve, she split to form her sister goddess, Alethia, and charged her with the duty of holding the chaos of Mab’s imagination in check within the dream world. And, Alethia did so, with great intent and purpose. Alethia’s strength was unquestionable and her power unrivaled. Against her grip Mab struggled and writhed, but Alethia’s single-minded focus upon her duty kept her arms strong and her grip tight. For a time there was balance in their conflict, neither could escape nor completely overpower the other. Compassion, however, despaired as she could see that both Mab and Alethia were bound only to their conflict and opposition, and neither were happy in their roles. She crafted forth two great gifts and formed two more sister goddesses to deliver them simultaneously to distract each from their conflict and allow them to understand their place in the universe.

To Alethia, she sent Gien with a charge of joy: the Eternal Rose of Life from which life in all of its minor chaos bloomed across the waking world. From this Alethia found an order and logic in the randomness of growth. She loosened her grip upon Mab and, just as Mab found acceptance with her gift, Alethia found joy in hers. And the world fell into a healthy balance between order and chaos.

When the Fool pledged himself to Compassion, Alethia created a spouse that would be as strong as her resolve, and so Selnoir was formed of her anger at being spurned by the Fool. Only her resolve could stand against him, so none of her sisters could endure his great power nor could their spouses stand against her great strength. Between them all things were a competition, and soon that competition gave way to a passion that shook the earth itself. From their love was born the Giants of the earth. They were stronger than any of the other races, and far larger, and they lived for their purposes and conflicts. Yet none of them understood the consequences of their actions until Compassion came and laid her hands upon a few of them. These Giants lost much of their strength, but gained a collective understanding of all that they had done before as a species, and passed this collective memory on to their children. They became the first Clont, and while diminished from their Giant cousins, they were still strong and proud and Alethia loved them greatly.

When Compassion was locked away after her confrontation with the male gods, Selnoir, overcome with fury after his defeat, struck Alethia with such great anger that he overcame her. He threw her from her mountain throne into the seat and bore down on her to drown her beneath the waves. Alethia, enraged herself at this sudden betrayal, tore at Selnoir’s eyes, ripping them from their sockets and in doing so became cruel and uncaring. From this union of cruelty and anger, a great demon was born known as the Leviathan. A being of great strength, malice, and cruelty, the Leviathan, with its ten thousand arms, pulled Alethia and Selnoir to the bottom of the deepest sea and drowned them both. In their rage and hatred for each other, they refused to work together and actively harmed each other’s chances of escaping from its terrible maw until both were consumed by it entirely.

The Fool eventually came and was swallowed himself, arriving in the stomach of the beast where Alethia and Selnoir still fought even though their strength had been all but consumed by the Leviathan. In his blindness, Selnoir could not see to fight back against Alethia. In her cruelty, Alethia could not see that with each blow the beast consumed more of her strength. The Fool confronted each and, urging them to confront not each other but the long series of wrongs they had committed against the other, found a way for them to reach resolution. Together the three fought free of the Leviathan and drove it to the farthest depths of the ocean.

Alethia, seeing the damage her cruelty had wrought upon Selnoir, and seeing him grow from a being she crafted from her own anger to something more, offered him not forgiveness, but mercy and would guide him with her strength for the rest of his days. Selnoir, knowing what pain he caused her with his rage, accepted that the loss of his eyes was justice and resolved to atone for his wickedness. To this day, these two oversee law, the rulers, and the fair treatment of criminals throughout all societies.

Manifestations:

Alethia always appears as a woman of great strength, often the size of a Giant. While her nature in this guise varies from race to race, she is almost always unarmed, preferring to fight with only her own strength.

Orders:

Circle of Law

The largest, and near universal practice of worship of Alethia and Selnoir is the Circle of Law.  Found in nearly every settlement, a Hall of Law is a place where rules are made, justice is determined, and trials of sport and strength are exercised. In the smallest of hamlets, the Circle of Law may be but a ring of stones or posts at the center of town where elders hear the disagreements of local farmers and on feast days wrestling tournaments might be held. In the largest of towns, they are frequently great courtrooms and arenas, serving both as recreation in adversarial sport as well as trying criminals under the law. Those who govern, keep the law, and represent the wrongly accused frequently worship Alethia and Selnoir.

The Arcane Universities

Alethia is respected more than any other god by those who would harness and control magic through careful study and through logic and reason. Alethia respects power of both the body and the mind, and the very intelligent frequently find solace in her blessings with the greater places of magical learning on the earth. While more wild sorcerers and witches find their inspiration through Mab, or occasionally other gods, those seeking logical, rational development of their arts always praise Alethia. The Versity Magic Academy boasts a massive statue in her honor in the center of the university, as do most similar institutions across the realms of Falleron.

Orlandian Empire

Alethia herself is believed to have once ruled from the Clairmont in the Orlandian Empire. From this high summit, her and Selnoir fell into the great crater of Orland, which shattered the earth upon their impact, and upon which a great temple was born. From here the first Empress of Orland ruled in the name of Alethia, and from here her divine might spread across all of her lands. The Orlandian nobility claim direct divine right from Alethia herself, and she was the cultural god of the entire kingdom until the preachings of the Church of Amalas began to sow chaos into this divine order several centuries ago.

Cults:

Some worshipers of Alethia “take the cloth” and become monks in her name, using their own strength to represent what they feel is their own law. Relying upon their strength of arm and conviction to make their own form of justice, such groups have both liberated the oppressed and destroyed fairly governed kingdoms in the name of their own version of law. Innumerable monasteries to the physical and emotional resolve of Alethia exist throughout the land.

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