Wednesday, October 07, 2009

The Cathedral of Erudition (Part III--Erathis)

(Again, since I've been up to my eyeballs--this is part of my continuing series, detailing the Cathedral of Erudition, found within the infamous city of Blackfall. Since I missed a post last week--I was getting married!--expect another post tomorrow evening with some of the pics of our epic "Pirates vs. Ninjas" cake!)

Erathis: The Arbiter of Moonraker Spire

Erathis, Mistress of Civilization and Major Domo of Progress, is viewed most primarily in the aspect of the Arbiter, and is often associated with Moonraker Spire—the extinct volcano that towers over the city of Blackfall. When found in iconography, she typically displayed as a dispassionate, robed human female, holding a gear in one hand with her other hand beckoning the viewer to stand still. The primary duties of the faith of Erathis at the Cathedral include the following:
• Establish and maintain the hierarchy of the Cathedral.
• Record doctrine and church law for the greater diocese.
• Serve as judicial arbiters and mentors for the public at large.
• Provide guidance to major community members and the like.
• Provide regular services and community events.
The current Adjudicator Juris is Aida Ballard (Human Cleric 21), who has held the post for 16 years. Aida is in her mid-50s, and has enjoyed her post as Juris, if for no other reason than it gives her a deserved reprieve from the continual crusade against the forces of chaos. Aida had been an adventuring cleric for quite a while, and has the battle scars to prove it, despite her seemingly matronly appearance.

The clergy of Erathis, hands down, holds the most political power within the city of Blackfall. Between their numerous social welfare programs and their religious services (which function as open forums to discuss social problems), the Erathian clergy hold massive weight within the city’s walls. Aida often works behind the scenes, however, letting her lieutenants and the like take the lead in running day-to-day operations.

Aida has drawn much fire from those within the Cathedral for relative complacency. Many believe that she is treating her position as one of ‘retirement’ and not giving it the serious focus that Blackfall requires. However, Aida has her own agenda. As of late, she has dispatched numerous teams of Erathians into the wilderness to the northwest of Blackfall, setting them to explore the Wastes of Vanalthia. These teams report only to Aida, and have become the source of much rumor within the Cathedral’s halls.

The Vigilant Cogs of the Arbiter’s Scale

Currently, approximately 40% of the initiates at the Cathedral of Erudition display their devotion to Erathis specifically. This provides Aida with a massive power base, upon which she can execute nearly every plan. This size is of particular use, as the Erathian faith is solely responsible for the faith’s infrastructure and social works.
Racially, the Erathian faith is dominated by humans and half-elves, though members of all races find themselves in the Erathian faith. Of particular note are the self-proclaimed Squeaky Wheels, a contingent of warforged believers, who consistently plead with King Maelbrek and his nobles to institute more progressive societal changes and legal freedoms.
Class-wise, clerics are most common within the Vigilant Cogs, though avengers often serve as the militant arm of Erathis’ court. However, Aida has begun a significant recruitment effort, focusing on humanoids able to weather the hazards of Vanalthia. As such, many wardens, wandering bards, and rangers have been brought into the fold.

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