D&D, Fantasy Fridays, RPG, Story, Writing

Llyr, the Sea Father

May the winds fill your sails, the waves guide your passage, and the storm be your harbour.”

In every port city and coastal village across Iyastera, on every sailing vessel that leaves the safety of the harbour and ventures out to unknown shores, sailors cast their thoughts to Llyr, the Sea Father.

Followers of Llyr find inspiration in the soul of the sea, and its teachings of perseverance, open-mindedness, fluidity, and strength. For them, the sea is both protector and avenger, provider and herald to new adventure. They see strength in the primal power of the waves, which can wear away even the most unyielding stone. Comfort in the bounty and sustenance the sea can provide. Untethered freedom in the endless expanse that can carry them onward to new adventures, new experiences. These characteristics are instilled in the three primary tenets of the Sea Father:

  • Boundless Exploration
  • Freedom of Passage
  • Guardian in the Gale

If these tenets are violated, Llyr’s protective and bountiful nature shifts to that of a raging tempest, and the Sea Father becomes the Storm Breaker. In defence of these ideals, Clerics of Llyr can channel the strength and ferocity of a storm-beset sea, as Llyr’s anger manifests in the form of crushing waves and lashing winds.

Worship and Prayer

All ships have small shrines containing a smooth glass bowl, driftwood or shells, and a few coins, with either a Cleric or Acolyte of Llyr on board to help guide and protect the crew on their journey.

Larger port cities will have temples near the docks, adorned with banners of deep blue and pale gold– the largest is located in Vidro Mar, the capital of the archipelago kingdom, Ilha. Murals and mosaics within the temples are made with shells and seaglass, and depict marine life of all kinds (fish, sea birds, etc.) as messengers of the god.

Worshippers will appeal to Llyr for calm seas, prosperity, and protection, and the following devotionals are commonly used in greeting and in prayer:

  • May the winds fill your sails (Exploration)
  • May the storm be your harbour (Guardianship)
  • May the waves guide your passage (Freedom of Will)

A Cleric’s Progression

The progression of a Cleric’s studies reflect the continuous ebb and flow of the sea—beginning at the home temple, casting out, returning again, and finally venturing out farther than before to a new harbour.

~Ebb~

An acolyte’s studies begin with learning the basic tenets of Llyr through tales and becoming accustomed to the sea under the tutelage of a mentor.

  • The Story of Eldoris teaches the importance of maintaining freedom of will and an open mind
  • The Story of Masika teaches of the storm and how it is both destroyer and protector
  • The Story of Alon teaches the joy of exploration, and the boundless bounty of the sea

This phase culminates with one month at sea, alone, to learn and experience the temperament of the sea and commune with Llyr.

  • For some, this communion comes to them in signs and dreams. It is rare that someone actually “hears” the voice of Llyr. Each acolyte’s experience is different and personal to them. Stories are shared upon their return, but with the expected exaggeration and fantastical elements, so that the true communion is still kept close.

~Flow~

After the month at sea, the acolyte becomes a Cleric, and begins their service to different ships. It is customary to begin with smaller, regional vessels, before graduating to the larger trade routes that visit other kingdoms. This phase of the journey has no defined end, and can continue for many years. The Cleric must learn as much as possible during this journey, and exemplify the tenets of Llyr in all things. Eventually, the Cleric will feel the pull to return again to their home temple.

~Ebb~

Upon this final return, the Cleric will undergo a test of self-exploration, to navigate their inner seas through meditation in a variety of ways, both mental and physical. Some choose to take a vow of silence and isolation during this period, to reflect upon their journeys and reach deep within themselves to identify the core of their service to Llyr.

~Flow~

After this test, the Cleric will discover a new direction to guide them, their Azimuth. They may find a calling to devote themselves more deeply to one of the tenets through exploring something unknown, serving as the founder of a new temple, or bringing the might of the Storm Breaker to wash away some dark influence, be it sickness or corruption. Only a few Clerics have found their Azimuth, and their stories are captured in each of the temples across the realm.

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