Gods of Dragonsky
Creation was alone and in loneliness made all things. First came Creation’s eight siblings. Thus the nine greater gods of Telduria. After Creation was through, he/it set about one final task, changing forever to become Knowledge and thus Creation was no more.
The siblings saw one another and being forever true to their natures began to struggle against one another. Knowing the names of these gods, the peoples and creatures of Telduria were as one with them and struggled alongside them.
The Nine Greater Gods
|Alignment||Title / Ideal||Domains||Gender|
|N||Knowledge (was Creation)||Knowledge, Nature||F|
The Ten Thousand Wars
In these times the gods still had their names, and to know a god’s name was to have that god fill one’s being. For many centuries, mortal creatures rose and fell and always fought, each with the name of one of the great gods held close in their minds. As centuries turned to eons those who held Freedom’s name most closely began to realize that although the gods had great power and seemed worthy of worship, the world was doomed to be stagnant while the names of the gods crowded other ideas from the minds of mortals.
So great heroes arose. And they stole away with the names of the gods and bound those names beyond magic and time and beyond even the reach of the gods. Destruction gathered her siblings, all but Kindness and Knowledge, and together seven of the great gods smote the mortal realm. Their wrath destroyed the heroes and all with them and formed the scar in the center of Telduria known as The Crucible. But still the names of the gods were gone, and the creatures of Telduria could now hold many ideas and beliefs at once. And so history began.
Sidebar: From these ancient times come some common sayings. When someone acts in a particularly notable way that is in line with only one of the great divine ideals, it is common to say that the person knows the name of the god. For example, the highest compliment one can pay a paladin is to say that “She knows the name of Valor.”
The History of Mortals
Freed from the names of the gods, the creatures of Telduria began their own history. For just over two thousand years the creatures of Telduria grew, fought, lived, and died. And now the dragon hordes have come.
Gods Without Names
Without their names, the gods of Telduria are ideas. They are not entities.
Without their names the gods are greatly limited. They cannot take physical form, not even as fragments or aspects of their power. Devotion and loyalty to them, worship of them, are always voluntary. Because of this the gods exist within Telduria at all times but cannot walk among it, nor can they force a mortal creature to take a certain action. Even bounded like this the gods have great power, and their essences shape Telduria and its history still. They can and often do reward the actions they favor with great power, pouring much of their essence through the spells and rituals of their clerics.
The Thousand Tiny Gods
The nine great gods were never alone. Around them and beside them stand thousands of minor gods. The nine great ideals spread lesser ideals and ideas at every turn. For each abstract idea there is a minor god. Some devote themselves to such powers and thus there are many types of clerics in the world. Clerics of Peace, clerics of Cruelty, clerics of Passion, and clerics of Truth. And nearly infinite others. As ideas they can lay dormant for centuries without worship, but true devotion can rouse them and their power. It is not uncommon for creatures to reach out to the tiny gods in times of desperation, hoping to awaken some power that gets them through whatever trial they face.
Three Things Everyone Knows About the Greater Gods
- Valor means doing what is right and what is hard, not necessarily battle.
- Light and luminance are often associated with Valor
- Devotees of Valor are often depicted as arrogant
- Dwarves venerate Order above other ideals
- Creatures of earth are shards of Order’s true power
- Devotees of other greater gods often view Order as boring and predictable
- Almost all who follow Tyranny claim to follow order and may even deceive themselves
- Hobgoblins venerate Tyranny above other ideals, all in the name of order
- Of all the greater gods, Tyranny’s power is the most easily disguised
- Many elves see Justice as the highest ideal
- Although often depicted as benign, Justice does not imply mercy
- Malice delights when the ideal of Justice is taken too far, but this is a one-way path
- The forces of nature align themselves with Knowledge
- Creatures made of air are shards of Knowledge
- Greater devotion to Knowledge often leads to inaction
- Undead creatures draw power from Malice
- In ancient times the Shadar-kai made a bargain with Malice for which they still pay
- Many see Malice as the purest expression of evil and refer to it as The Shadow
- The spirit folk see Kindness as the highest power
- Devotees of other greater gods often view Kindness as the weakest of the siblings
- The powers of life and healing are strongest in those who follow Kindness
- Freedom’s influence is sometimes said to lurk in every situation
- The fey, and creatures made of water are shards of Freedom
- It was Freedom that helped mortals become free of the names of the gods
- Destruction gives great power yet it always turns on the user
- Creatures made of fire are shards of Destruction’s true power
- Destruction’s power is greatest at the center of The Crucible