"O Divine Broker, merchant of souls, bless our transaction, make it holy and righteous in Your sight. May those that profit from it be ever prosperous, and earn our reward in Your Sacred Market. Release us from our debts, and grant us lucrative exchange now and forever."
- Prayer before a trade, from Bashad the Spectacular's "The Handbook of Divine Wealth"
Any number of clergymen might be accused of putting their demands for secular wealth over their spiritual needs. Even these, however, would never claim to worship their prosperity. Yet such is the case with the followers of the Way of Divine Wealth, a religion of uncertain history and unabashed cupidity.
"From his strange raft, the bizarre man stood, shell armor glistening in the sun. Bringing his stingray-barbed spear aloft, he howled: 'Be wary, trespasser! This reef is under my guard, and I her patronage! Bring not your boats near my shoal, lest you suffer the wrath of the Reef Knights!'"
- The logs Cpt. Creos Althea, Boshail Coast, 6 Ventôse 986.
Most know the love that goblins have for mushrooms. Few know the lengths they will go to obtain their delicacy.
“He is the Astral Harvester, the Lifegiver, the Sun King. Without him, the world is naught. And we, the members of his Divine Church, serve only at his command. It is by this holy order that we convert the universe.”
- Exarch Hardulph Symphorian
Not only a faith but a state, the Imperial Modoals are the largest force in the Continent. Can they hold their position as the Sectarian Wars begin?
"Hear, O Servant of the Just One! Hear and stand ye before him, the Celestial Judge! Hear and write: ‘Thus speaks the Great Lawgiver, before whom the world shall be tried, the one that is just and righteous beyond all - I am the Law. I am Dalraaen.’"
-The Didache of Law
The worshippers of the Celestial Judge have kept peace and law for a thousand years. When they see great injustice across the Continent, what can they do but fight?
“‘Hear! That which you warred for it gone. In its place is my own creation under my own authority. This Blessed Great Blue is my patronage and you will have no part in it! Lest you soil my sacred waves, I will cause them to crash onto your lands and drown your own creations. End your fighting: the seas are mine.’
Thus she spake from the Merciful Deep.”
- Yamasatran oral tradition
The mysterious Sisters of the Sea watch the events of the Sectarian Wars unfold from the safety of their monastery ships. But how long can they remain neutral before war is brought upon them?
“And into World they cast him, deep below, beneath stone and water and flame. In World’s Heart, doth gape the Peccant Maw, yet starved as the hunger grows unabated. Terror, irony, horror, farce! That which ends all is trapped beneath all.”
-The Tale of the Maw, “The Enslavement of the Devourer”
An ancient cult, the Vautuans worship their god with zeal. Chaos is their sacrament, death their prayer. Will the followers of the Gaping Maw free their god and destroy the world?
“The great hulk of the scaled beast lay wheezing before me, and I am not ashamed to say that I was frightened: though it was injured, I knew the dragon could easily tear me in twain. The young monk, however, knelt beside the creature’s head, whispering to it in a strange growling tongue. I questioned the woman, but she ignored me completely, engrossed in examining the scaly monster. After much badgering, she said merely, ‘I do not mean to be rude, but you are quite a distraction. Please, leave me to my work.’” -Jeron’s Great Journeys, Book III, Chapter 4
The air had grown chill the minute they descended into the strange valley, which was unmarked on any of their maps. It was so strange here, devoid of animal life and completely silent. The horses were nervous the entire journey through the vale. As they set about to collect firewood for the campfire they could hear their own voices as dim echoes through the eerie silence.
The food didn't taste anything that evening and their sleep was cold and troubled by nightmares. While they are clearing camp the next morning, one of them stumbles over a piece of stone jutting out of the ground nearby the horses. On closer inspection there seems to be runes engraved into the polished surface. The symbols true meaning is no more known among mere mortals and if they decide to dig deeper, they will discover that it is an ancient altar buried within the soil.
Any historically oriented party member will recognize the largest symbol to be the insignia of the powerful warlock who ruled this realm several centuries ago. At their departure from the area, something will seem amiss with one of the party members and all will remember the stories of the warlock's thousand curses.