|Home(s)||The Courtyard of the Gallant|
|Symbol(s)||A rose, a silver sword|
|Portfolio||The Arts, Gallantry, Purity, Romance, Dreams, Statesmanship|
|Worshippers||Aelin, bards, artists, lovers, elected officials|
History in Avendar
In the age following the Sundering, the aelin race rose amidst the wastelands of the Prime. Their high culture, born of both divine ember and their keen intellect, established itself with sudden and sweeping ferocity. Two parent-gods emerged from the adolescent race's conscience: Aeolis, the charismatic patron of the arts, and Alia, radiant goddess of the skies. Both were worshipped, and typically in concert; Aeolis delighted in gallantry and romance, while Alia nurtured beauty and temperance. Many of the early aelin found some of themselves in these ideals, and the connection between the divine and the mundane was strong.
The War of Fire shattered many of the naive notions of the pre-War period, the great culture established by the aelin forefathers reduced to ash and corpse. The aelin resolutely clung to their dreams even as they were incinerated, calling out to their deific father and mother for respite. However, the Compact prevented them from taking any serious action, and instead left their children to suffer at the hands of their enemies. With the aid of early humans, some aelin left their cities and sought the slumbering Father of the Seas, Jolinn. Together, they roused the ancient overgod and claimed the magics of Water, the decisive weapon of the War. With so much lost, the post-War years focused on restoring the aelin race to its former glory. Humans embraced the high culture of the aelin, mirroring it in their Republic.
The servitor-god, Serachel, descended to the Prime to aid the damaged livelihood of the aelin race at the behest of Jolinn. Aeolis resented this act, as direct divine intervention was a threat to His children. His sister-goddess, Alia, believed in the actions of Serachel and chose to do so at His side. Although Aeolis attempted to dissuade Her from this course, She was resolute and Her aim was compassionate; He reluctantly conceded insofar as He did not attempt to bar Her way. Aeolis himself, however, did not take on mortal form as did His siblings. For awhile, at least, it seemed Aeolis' fears were unfounded, as Serachel and Alia did much to revitalize the battered aelin race.
When Serachel urged the embrace of the Void to the aelin people during the War of Night, Aeolis vehemently opposed it. It was then that He truly realized the stakes of Serachel's involvement with His children, although Aeolis' mortal following numbered few against the political and ideological might of His rival. The unexpected arrival of Rystaia and the ch'taren granted Aeolis the opportunity He desperately desired. Her command of the Spirit offered the possibility of exposing Serachel's devious intentions. Together, He and Rystaia reclaimed both Serachel and Alia; She imprisoned Serachel in the Nightmare Realm, while He ended Alia's ability to walk amongst mortals. While He saw this as a kindness to His lost love, Alia's desperation and withdrawal transformed Her into the Mad Angel, Alil. In the post-War period, His followers sought to eradicate the infidel faith of Serachel and strike His hated name from history. As a patron of the Champions of Avendar, Aeolis continues to battle the vice and selfish pride that have plagued His children for a millennium.
Goals and Methods
Aeolis seeks a world filled with gallantry, purity and romance. His primary agents for this world are His children, the aelin, as their collective soul already reflects the possibility of its creation. Aeolis finds his greatest pleasures in mortalkind feeling the rush of infatuation and the joys of placing others before themselves. Many non-aelin consider Aeolis to be a sort of deific playboy, although His intentions center more on allowing others to exult in the blush of new love, rather than as a collector of endless lovers. Purity is foremost to Aeolis, as it is the overarching principle by which the rest of His portfolio need conform. It should be noted that Aeolis Himself does not suggest that His followers espouse chastity or poverty, but to keep their intentions clear; those who would be harmed by well-intentioned love probably deserve it.
To create the world that Aeolis envisions, He encourages His followers to take up any number of personal interests, such as music, painting, poetry, or dance. All of these things are simple pleasures to the aelin, but each in turn is a facet of courtship. Additionally, statesmanship also falls amongst Aeolis' methods, as it represents a heightened form of romance, in this case being between an official and his nation. This dovetails well into the aelin belief in Iandiric law, as it blends the best traits of leadership with the charismatic flair of aelin stylings. Dreams are possibly the most fluid of Aeolis' domains, the breadth of which is found in all manner of public and private life. Those dreams which drive people to greater heights, rather than self-destruction, are His to appreciate and encourage.
Organizations and Followings
The pursuit of love and purity takes many forms, but for followers of Aeolis, it tends to be divided into three broad categories. While many who walk in the light trend toward cooperation, those who walk the Rose Lord's path often seek to break a mold rather than conform to it. As a result, many of His devoted do not organize themselves in vast numbers, preferring to surround themselves with diverse company. The major divisions are as follows:
The Artists of the Rose
"Actually… I wrote this just for you."
Music, painting, and poetry hold particular value to Artists of the Rose, as these can illuminate feelings, truths, and insights that common encounters lack. Many travel Avendar in search of inspiration, as the experiences that touch their own hearts, in turn, touch others'. Often, these experiences relate to the art of courtship, infatuation, or the turmoil of interpersonal entanglements. Much as Aeolis praised Alia's beauty and keen wit, so do Artists gravitate toward similar and extravagant expressions to their myriad of lovers. Some might describe them as hopeless romantics, although an Artist would rarely live any other way. Often eschewing conflict, Artists will still raise their swords if the emotions they seek to preserve are threatened.
The Order of the Silver Sword
"Villain! Stand down, lest I make short work of you!"
The martial arm of the church of Aeolis, the Order of the Silver Sword composed of gallant warriors and templar. Protectors of innocence, they often risk their lives for the good of others. This protection, however, comes with an almost storybook flourish; a typical member of the Order pays special attention to both his appearance, and perhaps secondarily, his actual skill. Silver Swords often find themselves keeping company with those for whom they have amorous intentions. Although common images often depict men protecting women, there is no real aversion to other sorts of pairings as well (as the aelin largely appreciate all forms of attraction). Although they will at times take up an active pursuit of evil, a dedicant of the Order is most easily roused to defense, especially when the subjects of his affection are involved.
The Magistrates of the Runil
"Brothers and sisters! What a world we shall create!"
Statesmen of particular renown often find themselves regarded as Magistrates of the Runil. Named after the runil, a tool of aelin judges, the category has its origins in legendary justices of the ancient aelin courts. Charismatic and upstanding, what separates a Magistrate from well-known politicians is their unrelenting dedication to maintaining both professional and statewide purity. Truly, all things that they endorse are intended for the purest of reasons. More contemporary Magistrates are no longer confined to judicial rulings or aristocracies, and instead take the role of respected diplomats and leaders. Although they may work in concert with the Sons and Daughters of Jolinn, a Magistrate is far more likely to be surrounded by a cult of personality. As a result, those chosen officially have often proven resilient to even the most potent of temptations. To be named a Magistrate is typically considered the crowning glory of a long and successful career.
Followers of Aeolis are traditionally moralizers, and not always rational voices even amongst the aelin. They tend to embrace a higher aesthetic than most, and their fixation on interpersonal ties and proper behavior often put them at odds with society's realists. Like their Lord, they often make encounters a breath of the fantastic, rather than the dreary mundane. If mortal life is a play, a follower of the Rose often feels that they perform one of the lead roles. This intentional distortion of reality serves to further the press toward what the aelin, in particular, are capable of being, rather than feeling powerless to the world's many evils.
The aelin worship Aeolis more extensively than other races, tracing His roots along with the initial rise of their cultural empire. In the years since the War of Night, other races have found themselves inspired by the storybook nature of His chosen. As one of the three patron gods of the Champions of Avendar, Aeolis' influence is widely accepted throughout the known world. In artistic circles, the blessing of Aeolis is a high mark of pride for both the bearer and those who share in their works.
Those who find favor with the Lord of the Rose are marked with a rose-entwined silver sword.
Aeolis is considered a dependable ally within the circles of the Light. Along with Rystaia and Jolinn, He blesses the Champions of Avendar in their fight against evil in all forms. Calaera, in particular, often finds Aeolis' methods a bit too mellow, but He finds acceptance with the contemplatives of Alajial. The neutral pantheon is largely indifferent to Aeolis, as He makes no strong concessions to law or chaos, but instead healthily mixes the two as necessary. Evil deities tend to despise Him, as His endless moralizing and militant following constantly trouble their followers, especially when it is done primarily for show.
Aeolis has a special concern for Alil, whom He feels great guilt for failing to protect. Had He been more diligent, perhaps She would not have devolved into madness and wanton excess. He harbors a special anger toward Serachel, who He regards as a dangerous rogue deity hellbent on corrupting the collective soul of the aelin people. Through His followers, He seeks to purge the evil of the Dark Angel and elevate all mortalkind to a higher, more perfect state.