Tuesday, March 31, 2009

Tethys Campaign: Eusebes

The great city of Eusebes is a wealthy city-state whose people are a diverse mixing of cultures. Academic pursuits are of the highest order here, with all who honestly seek knowledge being welcome.
Its potent occupants make this city "off limits" in regards to raids by other city-states. Many of the priesthoods maintain their own small armies, all of whom contribute to the defense of the city itself.
The city is ruled by a council of elders, each coming from the major temples, and two powerful wizards. The main interests of these masters is to pursue greater knowledge.


Areas of InterestSome regions around Eusebes are of interest to adventurers.
Dolym Swamp: Miles of muck and tall marshweed make this swamp tricky to traverse. And the many types of monstrous vermin make even dinosaurs rare. Tales of bat demons stealing travellers are common.
Ncar Forest: The Ncar forest is a large forest that is dotted with numerous small shrines and spirit houses. Penetrating deeper than the outskirts of this forest is very difficult, as a great many plant monsters hunt here.
Shrine of Enek-zsan: Rumor has it that the burial place of the phanaton prince Enek-zsan is located somewhere within the Ncar forest. This shrine is said to contain many treasures.

Cults of Interest
As Eusebes is a city of intellectuals, many clerical groups hold great influence. Below are a few of these groups.

Tethys
Worship of the life-force of tethys herself is widespread. The Oracles of Tethys have many regional varieties, but there are certain doctrines that exist amongst all sects. The cycles of birth, marriage and death are of primary concern, and thus mothers, young and old are revered. Cycles of life, and their reverence are strongly promoted. Society is primarily matriarchal, with all women seen as manifestation and representation of Tethys herself.Those oracles who claim to have had visions of Tethys claim that she is a beautiful and statuesque woman of immense proportions. She is often described as having mixed human, reptilian and piscian characteristics in her form such as a tail, scales and other features mixed with that of a human.
The temple of Tethys in Eusebes is a vast dome, featuring a huge courtyard pool. The temple hosts a great many festivals and ceremonies where great feasts and concerts are common. Art and culture is of particular interest to this cult.
Cleric Alignment: Any non-lawful, preferring good.
Domains: Animal, Healing, Plant, Water.
Favored Weapon: Dagger.
Portfolio: Sea, Jungles, plants, agriculture, childbirth.

Oceanus
The male aspect of Tethys is known as Oceanus, and is given reverence primarily in the long night, as this is a time of frequent battle as the nights predators emerge. Cultists dedicated to the male aspect are trained in battle and survival, prizing physical power and tests of strength as well as ones ability to sire offspring. Oracles dedicated to Oceanus claim that he appears as a ferocious man with a wild beard and features of crustacean, reptile and fish, and that he stands well over 60ft in height.
The temple of Oceanus in Eusebes centeres around a huge ziggurat of stone and capped with electrum. This temple and its surrounding buildings trains and houses a sizeable army and stockpiles of grain and weapons.
Cleric Alignment: Any non-Chaotic.
Domains: Animal, Strength, War, Water.
Favored Weapon: Trident.
Portfolio: Sea, Sea Monsters, Shipwrech, Storms.

Daughters of The Cybele
The Cybele are a Matriarchal people with a tradition of Sacred Sun-Kings. This Sun King is chosen from the people, and becomes the pampered consort of the high priestess, who in turn slays him after a full day and night (Tethys time) to ensure the coming of the dawn. Male Oracles of the Cybele are castrated so as to serve their goddess. Giant Bees are commonly kept as pets amongst the Cybele, and are sacred to them.
The temple of the Cybele in Eusebes is a beautiful beehive-like structure located near the great gardens of Eusebes. This building is adorned with gold plate that reflects the light. The temple itself is home to a large hive of sacred bees whose humming can be interpreted by the priestesses to discern prophecy.
Cleric Alignments: Any Lawful
Domains: Sun, Fire, Protection, Law
Preferred Weapon: Dart
Portfolio: Bees, Civilization, Honey, Prophecy

Artifact Cults (Construct Cults)
The machines of the ancients are many, some of whom continue to maintain the artificially maintained conditions of terraformed worlds. As many such robots are busy with maintaining and protecting planetary life forces, Planetary Oracles are often drawn to work with them, becoming half-mechanics in their own right. Such specialized clerics are called to gain proficiency in Craft (Mechanism) and Knowledge (Technology) or Knowledge (Architecture/Engineering).
There are many artifact cults operating in Eusebes, who maintain the magical mechanisms of the city itself, and seek to serve the laws passed down by their patrons. Good relations exist between the different artifact cults, but all maintain their own shrines and structures.
Alignment: Any Lawful
Domains: Law, Knowledge, Magic, Protection.
Preferred Weapon: Club

Acolytes of Isonont (Gardeners)
Followers of the Artifact God Isonont, charged with the maintainance and health of Tethys plant life. They maintain the lunar beacons (towers that emit soft light to help invigorate plants) during the Long Night, and preserve seeds and cuttings of endangered plants.
The acolytes have a large temple that features large gardens, including fascilities that maintain artificial sunlight during the long night. These gardens are used for meditation as well as for future planting.
Cleric Alignment: Lawful Neutral
Domains: Knowledge, Law, Plant.
Favored Weapon: Sickle


Followers of Olaust (Tamers)
The followers of Olaust watch over the beasts of Tethys. This cult maintains feeding zones, medical treatment and egg-collecting and incubation. The rearing and training of animals is also of interest to this cult, and as such they are much sought for concerning veterinarean and animal breeding purposes.
The followers of Olaust have no temples per se, but maintains impressive hatcheries and incubation fascilities. Most of these are in the surrounding areas, but there is a Olaust-runmanagerie in Eusebes itself.
Cleric Alignment: True Neutral
Domains: Animal, Healing, Knowledge.
Favored Weapon: Whip


Agdistis
A cult centered in and around the Ncar Forest, but maintaining a temple in the city. This cult challenges the Acolytes of Isonont in their role as overlords of the green and growing world. This cult engages in orgiastic rituals inolving powerful narcotics, sex and wild dancing. Their patron Agdistis (a xenogen demon) sometimes attends these gatherings in person.
This cult is indescriminate towards its selection of victims, stealing high and lowborn alike, and thus it is much feared. Wealthy and poweful persons will often approach this cult for assasination purposes and to take part in their rituals.
Cleric Alignment: Chaotic Evil
Domains: Chaos, Plant, Trickery
Favored Weapon: Quarterstaff (see Poisontree Staff below).


Poisontree Staff
The Tree of Death is a tree found in the lowland swamps, from which staves can be cut that will deliver a poisonous death to any victim touched. Any successful strike with the staff deals normal damage and poisons the creature hit. The poison deals 1d10 points of temporary Constitution damage immediately (Fortitude negates DC 14) and another 1d10 points of temporary Constitution damage 1 minute later (Fortitude negates DC 14).
Caster Level: 10th; Prerequisites: Craft Rod, Craft Magic Arms and Armor, poison; Market Price: 19,000 gp.
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I saw Eternity the other night,
Like a great ring of pure and endless light
-- Henry Vaughan