Anesthia (4e Deity)
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Anesthia was the mortal daughter of Thronin, All-father and Creator of Stormforge and a human woman on a distant and long forgotten world. After two millennium traveling across the planes gathering lost knowledge she came across a world ruled by a bitter and hateful death god, who devoured captured souls like the demons of the lower planes or bound the souls into walking corpses in his own image. For an unknown reason this angered Anesthia greatly and she summoned forth her two millennium of forgotten knowledge and cast a great ritual that stripped released every bound soul on that world. The unbound souls numbered in the millions. The death god's anger was overwhelming and he prepared to strike down Anesthia and she expected to die when the unbound souls instead shielded her from his fury. A hundred thousand unbound souls ceased to exist in that first divine hit, but Anesthia allowed the unbound souls to not only protect her, but bind with her very being. She gained a wealth of knowledge from every soul that bound itself to her and as that knowledge flooded her mind and stretched her own soul to it's very limits she realized that the angry death god had made a fatal mistake. The death god needed worshippers to grant his divine power and he had murdered everyone of his worshippers and bound then as undead. The undead she had just released and were protecting her. Without worshippers his divine might paled compared to the might of millions of souls.
Anesthia gladly accepted every soul, with the promise to release them when the threat of the death god was gone. Once the last soul was bound to her she swelled with their worship and for a short time the divine might of the souls was wielded by her as she struck down the death god and then separated his divine body from the remnants of his tainted soul. She took the tainted soul and bound it in a skull and then offered the millions of souls that bound themselves to her their freedom. Most of the souls left for a true afterlife and with them went the divine spark that Anesthia had held, but she was still bound to thousands of souls. She left that world and returned to her traveling of the planes. However, as time past so many souls bound to her own started to drive her mad. She stumbled towards the city of Sigil lost and confused. As she attempted to pass through the gates the Lady of Pain, ruler of Sigil stepped in her path and forbid her entry. The now insane Anesthia sought to force her way into the city and a great crowd gathered to see the spectacle expecting the Lady of Pain to slay the trespasser, but instead the Lady just waved her hand and opened a portal for Anesthia. Then she spoke Go Child, Thy father awaits your coming
Through the portal Anesthia went, insane from all the souls tied to hers and no divinity to keep them from overwhelming her. Thronin welcomed his daughter and gave her the divine spark to cure her mind and soul and to give her a purpose he chose her to care for death in Stormforge and she has remained the keeper of secrets since her coming.
Anesthia is also known as Goddess of Death and Keeper of Secrets. She resides on Godsend. Rarely or in only in large cities can one find her temples. She is prayed to by those Dying, those resurrected, information brokers, sages, gravediggers, and undead slayers exalt Anesthia. Her commandments are:
- Hold life sacred, but do not fear death
- Do not seek to cheat death through unlife
- Honor the dead for they watch over and protect you in times of great need
- Seek forgotten lore so that you might prevail against those who seek to possess you
Anesthia has two types of clergy, Deathmaidens and Skullwardens. Deathmaidens are the militant arm of Anesthia's faithful, they are taught the methods of slaying undead, rituals to prevent the dead from rising, and ancient scripts so that they may seek forgotten lore. The Skullwardens are taught to tend to the dead, prepare the dying for their afterlife, and taught ancient rituals that protect the dead from harm in the afterlife. A soul blessed by a Skullwarden can never be diverted from their afterlife, except by their own will and the blessing of Anesthia.
- Destroying undead creatures that plague a village.
- Protecting a caravan of Skullwardens as they bring a fallen hero's body home to be properly buried in his family crypt.
- Searching for forgotten lore in an ancient ruins.
The clerics of Anesthia say their prayers anytime throughout the day, but always say are short prayer over the dead on a battlefield before they depart. When possible they will either return to give the dead a proper burial or ensure that they receive one by hiring someone else to bury the dead.
There are few temples to Anesthia, except in very large cities. However every city has that living people has at least a small shire to Anesthia, even in darker lands. Sentient undead like vampires and liches loath her Deathmaidens and in lands ruled by her they will attempt to tear down any shrines to her.
Special rites and rituals are held on the nights of the new moon and at funerals ceremonies.
Heralds and Allies
Anesthia is known to have adopted the use of a murder (flock) of Ravens as her heralds and she sometimes imbues the ravens with her favored bound souls so that they might act on her behalf. A murder of Ravens perched on a single building in a village is seen as a sign that someone will die before morning.