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    Dedestroyt [dee-dae-strawt]  

(The Destroyer, The Killer, The Guard of the Dead)

The most feared deity on the Counsil.  Dedestroyt is the gate guard between the mortal world and the other.  He is the judge that decides where a mortal will go after death; either to their own deity, or to his unforgiving realm.  He is entrusted with stopping as many cultists from reaching their deities after death as possible.  Dedestroyt is seen as an armored skeleton, taller than an ogre, who wields a mighty serrated greatsword.  Once, before the Counsil had been formed, Dedestroyt tried to kill to the world.  He fought the creators, and defeated all but Habastly, whom shattered Dedestroyt’s slaying sword with his life force.  Seeing the power of this new deity, and not being able to destroy him, Habastly offered to share the cycle of existence with Dedestroyt, who gladly accepted the role.  It is also said that since Dedestroyt failed in his mission to kill the world, it will turn pass to one of his progeny to do so.

           

The followers of Dedestroyt fall into two categories.  Those that respect death and help others to respect it and not fear it, and those that want to bring death and destruction to Habololy.  Fortunately, the former, who have a shrine or temple in nearly every city, outnumber the latter, who generally hold no temples or shrines.  The two sects do not interfere with each other and in fact there are two different clerics held as the high cleric by the two factions.

           

Malcolm leads the majority of the religion, traveling from temple to temple, ensuring that the faithful are in line with the teachings of Dedestroyt.  He wages a constant evangelic war against Vistrani Fell, the current Dead Stalker and leader of the other sect.  (See sidebar).

           

Dedestroyt has always supported the Counsil; his symbiotic relationship with Habastly has existed for millennia.  However, this support does include a great deal of scorn, especially towards Quan Yin and Falan.  Dedestroyt loathes the cults, with the exception of Loomashyn.  His clerics, of either sect, will openly attack any clerics of Hemator.

           

Unlike most of the other deities, who give the quasi-deities the opportunity to prove themselves, Dedestroyt has never voted for the elevation of a quasi deity to the Counsil.  His religion calls for the persecution of the followers of any quasi-deity.

           

The appearance of Dedestroyt always bodes poorly for those that see him.  The hulking 12 foot skeleton in plate armor never sneaks in or quietly appears.  His entrance is booming and his presence is felt at the end of his massive serrated greatsword.

 

Power:  Greater God

Symbol: A human skull with serrated sword through the eye sockets.

Alignment:   Chaotic Neutral

Aspects:  Death, Destruction

Plane of Existence:  Prime Material

 

Domains:  Death, Destruction, Repose, Terror, War

Prayer Time: After the sun sets for the day

Favored Weapon:  Serrated Greatsword

Turn Undead:  Turn Undead

Back from the Dead:  None

Favored Class:  none

 

High Temple none

High Cleric:  Malcolm the Dread

Number of Faithful:  200,000

Associated Groups:  Huntsmen, the Dead Stalkers

 

Dogma:  Death is the only inescapable truth.  Respect it and make sure those who do not learn to do so.

Feast Day: 17th Leenot

 

Divisions in the Religion

 

The religion of Dedestroyt is split into several parts.  Some tolerate each other, while others do not.  None are openly hostile towards each other.  Within the religion, the divisions are: The Killers, the Destroyers, the Overseers, and the Stalkers.

 

There is a debate, which caused the most significant split in the religion, as to which division most closely resembles and follows the life of Dedestroyt.  It should be noted that the faith believes that Dedestroyt was once alive in the normal sense, but that he was not born in the normal way, nor was he bound by the normal rules of mortal life.  The two divisions that believe each follows that truth path are the Killers and the Stalkers.  The Killers are much more numerous, and are allied with the Destroyers and the Overseers.  The Stalkers are fewer in number, but are more individually powerful.  The Destroyer and Overseer sects are both recognized as true devotees of the religion by the Killers, thought all three agree that those two sects do not embody the actual life of Dedestroyt.  The Slayers hold those two sects in contempt, and typically do not consider them worthy of their time.  For their part, the Overseers and the Destroyers stay out of the way of the other two sects, showing preferential treatment to the Killers, but never opposing the Slayers.

 

The true animosity among the divisions is between the Slayers and the Killers.  The divide between these two was born differently than the divides that created the Overseers and the Destroyers.  In both of those cases, the division was born out of necessity.  First, a need for clerics that managed the bodies of the dead and looked after funeral rites everywhere.  Second, the need for the destruction of things that could not be killed in the normal fashion.  The harsh divide, between Killer and Slayer, came about around the time the Dedestroytian Empire was gaining power.  Clerics of Dedestroyt had always played a role in the nation on the Dedestroytian Peninsula that became an empire.  The majority of the warriors of the nation were faithful servants of the deity.  Their embracing of death made their army feared.  The backing of a powerful deity, before the creation of the Counsil, meant respect and power.  The nation grew quickly, only slowed by the death of leaders that by religious edict could not be kept alive using extraordinary means; which at the time included powerful healing.  Later, when the nation an empire, some of the clerics began to rethink their role.  They thought that the constant drone of battle and war would lead to a massive backlash.  The world could not be ruled by Dedestroyt alone.  These clerics were also the ones that at the time favored creation of the Counsil of the Deities.  A struggle began in the Dedestroytian Empire internally between the those clerics, and the ones who saw an unneeded break with tradition occurring.

 

In the records of the nation, the struggle is known as The Reckoning of the Clerics.  The religion of Dedestroyt uses the term Two Sides of Death to describe the tumultuous period in its history.  It began with debate between the leading clerics of both sides.  For two years the clerics debated.  It is believed that during the debate and the time that immediately followed, the sects of the Overseers and Destroyers gained significant power.  At the end of those two years, the leading proponent of the more traditional side, the side that disliked the idea of a Counsil, had enough of talk.  His name was Tyvedak Skullsmith and ah slew his counterpart and half of the other clerics of the high temple in what was then Mevil City.  Word spread quickly through the city among the ranks of the clerics, and sides were taken; lines were drawn.  For almost five years, the clerics fought and killed one another, thinning the ranks of the clergy.  In the end, it was the side that favored the Counsil that won.  They were seen as the more reasonable sect, and earned the backing of the army and the leaders of the nation.  The others, the few that remained, were driven from the empire, and remained barred on penalty of death from returning.  That law existed until the time of the Destroytian Republican hundreds of years later.  The names of the two sects were coined by the clerics of Habastly.  Clerics of Dedestroyt, on either side, called themselves clerics and their opponents heathens.  The name given by the clerics of Habastly stuck and was adopted by the rest of the world.

 

While the Killers remained the dominant force in the Empire, it took them many years to claim that same dominance over the religion elsewhere.  After fifty years, they had taken control of nearly every temple and holy place in the world.  Slayers were arrested and killed as a matter of edict for the next five hundred years.  In that time, the world in general knew little of the division in the religion.  It was not until the rise of the Umanin Kingdom and the reign of their high cleric Kendall that the division became evident.  Kendall rose to become one of the best known clerics of Dedestroyt, but it was not until after his greatest accomplishment, the Elven Slaughter, that he let it be known that he was a Slayer.  From then on, he would be known as Kendall of the Slaughter.  For longer than any human normally lives, he was able to fend off the Killers and train other clerics in the ways of the Slayer.  It is ironic that the restorer of the sect would eventually be worshipped in his own right by a cult which is much more ruthless than either the Killers or Slayers.

 

With a return to notoriety, the Slayers were able to establish their own open temples.  With the specter of Kendall over the religion, the Killers dared not challenge them.  It had been so long since they had to battle their own, they had lost the will to do it.  Finally, one hundred years after Kendall's apparent death, the Killers rose up and demanded the Slayers bend to the will of the religion.  They refused and the Cleansing began.  Another war within the religion, this one occurred in many areas of the world.  This time, after several years, peace was brokered by the other religions.  Seeing the horror that could occur if it were allowed to continue, Habastly, Han~Sui, and Tyrogatore brokered an accord.  The two sects would each be allowed to keep temples currently in their possession.  Each side would be forbidden for one thousand years from attacking the other's temples.  While this gave an advantage to the Killers, who had many more temples, the Slayers had to agree.  Since then, a relative peace has existed.  Only when a new temple or shrine needs to be set up is their tension and bloodshed.

 

 

 

 

Commands of Dedestroyt

 

The rules of Dedestroyt's religion are ones that are unquestionable.  Those in the religion that break a command are harshly punished.  The commands are very specific, and they do not deal with behavior at all, only certain actions.

 

  1. Leave the dead dead

  2. Respect the corpse of the dead

  3. Allow nothing to subvert the natural path of death

 

Edicts of Dedestroyt

 

The edicts of Dedestroyt were created long after the commands.  They all deal with how a faithful member of the religion is called upon to treat certain groups.

 

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The cults seek to twist the natural progression of life and death on Habololy.  They cannot be tolerated.  Do not associate with the cults or cultists.  Bring about their death when it is convenient.

 

Temples of Dedestroyt

 

The temples of Dedestroyt can e split into two categories: large mortuaries and locations where a huge number of deaths occurred.  The high temple is located in Freeburg.  It is considered the high temple mainly due to the fact that it is the oldest temple in the faith to never have been destroyed; although in the days of the Dedestroytian Empire, it was the high temple for other obvious reasons.  It should be noted that the Stalkers division of the religion does not have any temples.

 

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Freeburg, The Final Home.  The temple has become a complex to rival some castles in the world.  The original temple sits near the center of the complex, and dates back over two thousand years.  Since then, the complex has grown larger through the years.  After every major war, after every time the temple withstands an assault, the emperor increases the size of the complex.  This is a temple of the Killers sect, with heavy Overseer representation.

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Jaswap, The Old Capital.  A huge temple located in the ruined southern portion of the city.  The many wars of Jaswap have left a massive area of ruin and death in the southern fifth of the city.  Here, undead began to rise, and spirits were abundant.  The clerics of Dedestroyt, a major religion in the city, took it upon themselves to move their temple into the ruined city after the last war.  Since then, it has attracted many new faithful and is home to three dozen clerics.  The temple is devoted to Overseers and Destroyers, the former of which is much newer, but more influential.

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Allied Deities

 

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Habastly, the antithesis to Dedestroyt is not an ally in the traditional sense.  The two deities recognize the need for one another.  They understand that without life there is no death and without death, life is meaningless.  The religions are less allied then the deities themselves, but there is an understanding among most of the clerics of each religion that no harm should be done to the other religion in most circumstances.  This is true of all divisions of Dedestroyt's religion.  The clerics of Habastly hold to this, although they are noticeably less trusting of the Destroyers.

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Falan, the rise of Falan's religion was welcomed by the religion of Dedestroyt, as the weight of responsibility for hunting undead was considerably lifted.  The two deities share a common disposition.  Dedestroyt and his religion sees Falan and his religion as useful in the efforts to make the cycle of life and death normal.

 

 

 

Nemeses

 

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Quan Yin, there is possibly nothing more disgusting to Dedestroyt than the idea of pacifism.  The glorification of love and childbirth are foreign to Dedestroyt as well.  The religion of Dedestroyt has no time for Quan Yin and her religion.  Clerics are ordered to at best ignore her clerics, to never aid them, and to speak out against her religion.  The Stalkers have been known to hunt down her clerics.

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Hemator. the patron of healing and a cultist, Hemator angers Dedestroyt and his faithful more than virtually any other deity.  The Killers, Slayers, and Destroyers are give open license to end the cult of Hemator.  The Overseers are given the same license, but it typically falls outside of their perview.

 

 

 

Dedestroytian – “The wise fear life more than death.”

 

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