Iron and Leaves
In a land of ancient traditions and time-worn cities, there is one thing very new under the sun: the Priestess’s Cathedral. This massive, multi-sided edifice rises into the sky seemingly out of sight, and the interior is a maze of passageways, sanctuaries, chapels, statuaries, inner sanctums, and occasional sunlit courtyards high above the ground. It dominates the skyline of Santa Cora, the City of Temples, and it serves as the Priestess’s home and court.
The Cathedral represents in stone the Priestess’s philosophy of spiritual union. The very shape and layout of the structure channel the runes and spiritual energy to generate greater harmony. She has built chapels and sanctuaries devoted to the many “spheres” of the Gods of Light, such as healing, life, truth, childbearing, harvest, strength, and fire. Priests of various gods convene there for shared rituals devoted to one or another of these virtues. The ceremonial unions achieved in the Cathedral echo spiritually through temples and shrines all across the empire, enhancing the general feeling of solidarity. Powerful heroes are sometimes invited to partake in certain rituals, as their heroic deeds resonate with the ritual acts to create more powerful effects. Every follower of the Priestess hopes to pray in the Cathedral one day. The Cathedral is a bastion of hope and stability in a world beset on all sides by danger.
The Priestess is constantly adding to the Cathedral, incorporating more and more worthy ideals into its structure. She even has passageways that lead to the overworld and to other planes of existence.
Rumor has it that all the stone for the Cathedral comes from a single, secret, distant source, perhaps the body of a fallen god or goddess.
Not all gods are included in the Cathedral. Some pantheons, like the elves, have resisted incorporation. Others, like the Aesir pantheon of the northern barbarian tribes, are still very new to the empire and haven’t been incorporated yet. And finally, the Priestess rejects dark gods and refuses to bring them into the Cathedral.
What does it mean that the Cathedral honors only the Gods of Light? Does it inadvertently generate a sort of negative pole of spiritual energy, something that the Crusader, Lich King, or Diabolist could exploit? Or does the Priestess secretly honor the spheres of the Dark Gods, too? Perhaps she’ll have to learn to do just that if her Cathedral is to survive.