The Gods of Terra
Nature, the Wheel of Life
Nature states that all that lives must die to be reborn again in endless cycle. More than simply empathic, Nature is connected to every birth and every death, Her body and spirit knowing the pangs of every mother and of every widow. In spite of various advancements that can serve to aid in the birthing process, and others that can extend the lives of men and women, Nature warns of the use of many magics and technologies. She believes that they conflict with the pure order. Nature also abhors the necromantic arts, which are an affront to both life and death in their animation of creatures that endure existence in limbo between the two true states of being. For the most part the followers of Nature have little use for scholarly philosophy, believing that all they need to know about the universe can be perceived through their senses during a day in the wild. Transcendent visions are not uncommon among the loyal followers of Nature, but the secrets of these visions are closely guarded. When questioned, Natureís followers simply state that the mysteries will be made clear and that "all will become one."
Nature walks Terra in the form of an elegantly mature woman with long chestnut hair into which flowers are woven, darkly tanned skin, and a gentle smile that contrasts with the aged sorrow visible in Her deep green eyes and the wicked, blood-stained spear She carries. She often wanders without clothing, but when guests are present She dons leather breeches and a simple woolen shirt. Her followers are known to dress in similar fashion, disdainful of the soft cloths worn by city dwellers. Nature takes on a variety of forms when travelling, rumors stating that a massive brown bear is the most common.
Sun, the Great Father
Sun proudly claims to be creator of not only the human race, but to be the progenitor of the race of the gods. He believes He is supreme among the immortals and is the self-proclaimed ruler of the Heavens. The other gods vehemently deny these claims. Whether Sun is right or wrong, one thing is certain Ė He is not lying; for He is the most truthful and just-minded of the gods, ever concerned with His own perception of the honesty and fairness of others. Satan proclaims to His followers that Sun is little more than a delusional megalomaniac; Nature more diplomatically states that "Sun has His own ways, as do we all." In retort Sunís own followers point out that His light shines more brilliantly and boldly than any the mortals of Terra have ever known. Indeed they believe their Master need make no pretense, use no deception, nor ever engage in subtlety. In regards to the rumor of a relation between Sun and Moon, Sunís followers state that their God is scornful of Moon, and has no relation to Her. In fact, the Sun faithful state that Moon merely attempts to steal Sunís brilliance and use it as her own, but is only able to manage a pale and cold reflection of His glory.
When Sun appears among his follower he descends from the clouds as a warrior clad in resplendent golden plate armor, armed with an enormous war hammer adorned with fiery rubies. He wears His visor down Ė for it is said that a mortal looking directly into the unmasked face of Sun is instantly obliterated. When wandering the wilds of Terra Sun takes on the appearance of an enormous lion, another symbol of his vision of lordship.
Moon, the Light in the Night
Some sages of Terra say that Moon has a deep hatred, rooted in events that occurred long ago, for Sun. Others state that Moon and Sun have little to do with one another, if anything at all. Still others claim they are secret lovers. No one knows the true association between the two. Moreover it is difficult to term anything a certainty when Moon is involved, for She is a fickle goddess with strange and wild moods Ė at times She shines bright and full in the darkness of the night, while at times She grants barely a flicker of beauty to Her devoted. Indeed, Her gentle celestial appearance belies Her passionate nature and She is said to be the most unpredictable of the immortals. It has been murmured among wise men and the gods that Moon seems to be constantly at war with the darkness of man as well as the darkness in Her past. Some go so far as to claim She lapses in and out of sanity as quickly and erratically as Her demeanor changes from serene to terrible.
Moon seems to delight in the coolness of the night and the calm that can be experienced only when the world sleeps. Many old men claim to have witnessed Moonís beauty first hand while walking alone late upon a quiet night. From these accounts there has emerged a common perception of Moon Ė a radiant young woman with alabaster skin, hair and eyes of deep obsidian, a lithe body sparsely clad in a translucent gown, and graceful hands (one clutching a white-linen cloth and the other grasping a silver crescent-bladed dagger Ė the purpose of these items is unknown). Those who have claimed to have seen Her unfailingly state that Moon sings soft melodies in a mournful voice as She meanders gracefully through the darkness. From such stories others have arisen, and there are several romantic tales telling of how the nightingale is of great importance to Moon. The birdís song is said to be related to a great love that has since been lost to time.
Magic, the Mistress of Chaos
Magic is the goddess of dreams, granting inspiration and ability to those who give Her praise. Some call Her the Muse Goddess, and note that She seems to be something of a dream Herself. Of all the gods, She varies the most based on a mortalís perception of Her. She is the goddess who aids humankind in unlocking the potential inherent within each individual Ė but even while she does this, she retains a certain amount of control over just how far the dream may take the dreamer. It is said that her first follower, Icarus, was allowed to push his potential too far too fast, which resulted in his death. With that Magic imposed limits. The other gods question Magicís ability to understand the limits of Her followers, especially since Science swore to deprive Her of logic and reason. Limits seem counter-intuitive to Magicís personality. To this She replies that Her penchant for reason comes from within Herself.
Science, the Magic of Man
It is said among the immortals that Science is an asexual being who abhors irrationality and whose only passion is the pursuit of reason. However, Science shows a surprising compassion for the devoted even while forsaking the company of the other gods. Science especially avoids Magic, believing that She was the primary cause of the first mage wars, which destroyed or lost the greatest technologies that had ever been developed. To show their disdain, the followers of Science have developed devices that are capable of draining magic power from the nodes of Terra; this achievement, they claim, demonstrates the superiority of Science over Magic. Also, Science has refused to grant Magic powers of logic and reason, and Magic has in turn withheld the inspiration and the dreams that She grants to those she favors. Scienceís followers are unperturbed when questioned on this topic, stating that their godís dreams and inspiration come from within.
Science rarely appears on Terra, and then only to the devoted possessed of the most innovative minds. According to the few existing reports, Science has the form of a human, but bears none of the gender-distinguishing features; faceless, hairless, and wearing nothing on the gray-blue flesh, communication is possible only through telepathy and occasional gestures. There are rumors that Science is working on some great project to ensure the salvation of the devoted and the preservation of their work, but even the most favored followers know not whether this is fact or fiction.
Satan, Ruler of the Nine Hells
Satan is reputed to be the God of darkness and destruction. He claims to have ruled the sky before granting it to Sun out of boredom and his own desire to rule the Nine Hells. He is the master of rhetoric and diplomacy; as such He is often called upon by the other Gods to arbitrate disputes and formulate contracts, though few of the immortals enjoy his company. Indeed, calling upon Satan for aid in diplomatic matters can prove to result in salvation or damnation, as all truth is relative to Him. It is said that Satan negotiated Luciferís punishment, the wounds of which the Light Bearer carries to this day.
Satan is known to appear in many forms, dependant upon the circumstances He is attending. It is said that He frequently walks Terra in the appearance of a mature man, dark of feature, but possessed of an angelic beauty and grace. Some have claimed that He prefers travelling in the form of a great falcon, while others state that He would never endure the indignity of embodying such a bestial form.
Lucifer, the Light Bearer
Prior to His exile Lucifer was well-loved among the gods, and was renowned by humans for his great compassion. However, with His fall He lost most of His mortal followers and is said to have become universally reviled by His immortal peers. Sages say the reason for His fall is that Lucifer revealed the great secrets of magic to humanity following the thousand years of peace, causing the mage wars to begin anew. The gods claim He did so because of a sadistic desire to see Man destroy itself. However, Lucifer has gained a new and incredibly devoted following who promulgate the idea that their god imparted the gift of magic so humanity could ultimately save itself from the tyranny of the immortals.
Lucifer, from what has been observed of Him, wanders Terra in the form of a wildly unkempt man in a battered and blood-stained peasantís smock. The chief feature that sets Him apart from the masses are His brilliant eyes, which seem to be of no color, but rather composed wholly of light. It is said that He has not spoken since his crime was discovered, and the swallow is rumored to be a bird of great importance to Him. There are rumors that He bears a wicked scar on the left side of His chest in the shape of an upside down cross, which has become His symbol. Lucifer carries a tablet of stone on His back, into which are chiseled cryptic runes from an Age long past. Sages have had little success in deciphering this lost language, but the final symbol is painted in black blood and is similar in appearance to an amulet worn by Satan.