Aoskar


From Timaresh

Revision as of 03:28, 8 September 2014 by Idran (Talk | contribs)

(diff) ← Older revision | Latest revision (diff) | Newer revision → (diff)
Jump to: navigation, search


Aoskar
Dead Power ({{{strength}}}), "Keeper of Gateways"
AoC: Doorways, keys, portals, opportunity
Worshippers: Planewalkers, planar travelers
AL: N WAL: Any
Symbol: A stylized, spiraling key with an opened door for a pommel
Home p: Astral Plane
Allies: Dalt
Enemies: Lady of Pain
Favored Weapon: Dagger
Domains: Liberation, Magic, Rune, Travel, Void
Subdomains: Arcane, Dark Tapestry, Exploration, Freedom, Trade, Wards
Known Proxies: Fell (Px/∅ dabus/oracle 5/Sign of One/N)

Aoskar is perhaps the most infamous deity in Sigil; once coming close to calling that city home, now he is forgotten by nearly all, and those that do still know his name almost always know him only as a cautionary tale, a story of the fate that would befall all deities that would seek to unseat the Lady. Even today, his worship is still punishable by death within the city's walls. If any Aoskarians still exist, their numbers must be slim; hiding in the shadows of Sigil, their very existence a capital crime but the Cage still the closest thing they have to a holy site, and still holding the closest thing they have to a high priest. Recently, however, interest in Aoskar has begun to emerge as the Will of the One, a sect of the Sign of One, has looked upon him as a potential target for divine resurrection, a demonstration of the power of their faction. Considered by most as a fool's choice, the ire they may draw from the Lady has dissuaded few of their number.

History

Though most records of Aoskar were lost in the Lady's destruction or the acts of various factions since that day, a semblance of the deity's history has been reconstructed. It is believed that ages past, Aoskar was naught but a simple god of planar travel, though his origins have long since been lost. What is known is that his worship caught the attention of a slight few in Sigil, bringing the attention of the god himself to the city. Always seeking new opportunities as was his wont, Aoskar was quick to see the potential of the planar metropolis. And while he obviously couldn't enter himself, however appropriate a realm it may have been, he soon forged plans to exploit it despite.

The Aoskarians soon gained a strong reputation for the depth of knowledge they held in the ways of portals, greater than near all the sages of the city, never failing to credit Aoskar for that knowledge. Here and there, they began incorporating rituals into their gate-keys, minor beseechments thanking Aoskar for his gifts. Soon, these rituals began to take hold amongst the commonfolk of Sigil as well. Aoskar's influence began to spread, and within a matter of years long it's recorded that nearly half of the people of Sigil were claiming the title of Aoskarian.

This period is believed to have continued for decades, known now as the Aoskarian period. It was during this timeframe, for example, that the now-common Aoskian hounds were bred; portal-sensitive dogs commonly used then and now by Primes to detect portals they otherwise would miss. It was also in this period that the great Temple of Doors seems to have been erected, built within the then-Prime Ward likely due to Aoskar's strong Prime origins and his heightened popularity amongst those with Prime origins. Before long, the cult's influence spread to the dabus themselves, and it is recorded that many of them began to themselves incorporate beseechments towards Aoskar into their duties. A strong argument could be made that he was, at the time, the most influential deity in the planes due to how much he'd interwoven himself into every planar transit in Sigil.

Finally, though, his influence overstepped his reach when one of the Lady's dabus took an additional step and beneath the Lady's notice took up within the priesthood of Aoskar. They rapidly rose through the ranks, becoming a full proxy before the Lady realized what had occurred, apparently a key step in Aoskar's plans to usurp the Lady; upon her realization of this act, her vengeance was swift and brutal. This event can be definitively dated for its sheer resonance within the city: it was in the year Hashkar -4873 that, overnight, the Temple of Doors and all those buildings for blocks around it were destroyed by a force unknown and unseen mid-sermon, all Aoskarians within those bounds killed in a single horrible instant. Aoskar vanished, responding to none, and it was not for centuries hence that his godcorpse was found in the Astral, head impaled with a multitude of blades. All iconography of Aoskar was purged from the city by the dabus, and the cortolestials once honored as living icons of the deity were no longer anywhere to be found, likely all mazed at once. The dabus priest of Aoskar was exiled from the warrens and banished from the Lady's service, forced to walk upon the ground and thus taking up the name Fell. Within a month of Aoskar's fall, his worship was declared a high crime by the city's government, one of the few laws to survive the transition into the faction era untouched. Within a year, the number of known Aoskarians fell to but a few dozen, and within a century, his name was spoken publicly only when refering to his hounds, the lone acceptable reference still held in Sigil.

Though there was a brief belief in some that his return was soon to be heralded at the first appearance of the blinks, it is only with the more recent appearance of the Will of the One that the common citizen of Sigil even knows of his existence. It is believed that an underground cult of Aoskar still persists, and of course Fell still preaches in his name, the only priest still publicly professing in the name of the Gate-God, as despite his exile harming him still brings the Lady's wrath. However, beyond rumor and exiles, Aoskar has truly since been purged from the Cage's bounds.

Priesthood

Little can be found today on the rites and ways of the former cult of Aoskar; even Fell's preachings hold little insight into their ways. Most likely, a common facet of their ways involved protecting the less plane-aware, Primes especially, from the dangers of unplanned planar travel. This is commonly held by modern sages for a number of reasons, if circumstantial: the existence of the Temple of Doors in the heart of the Prime Ward; the aoskian hound, known to have been used since its introduction in Sigil to ensure that Primes did not pass unwarily through an unknown portal beyond their sight; Fell's well-known habit of sealing ooze portals in the Hive, a duty avoided even by the Lady's own dabus. All seem to suggest a protective view of Sigil's Primes, various attempts to put them on even footing with the planar natives of the city. This is perhaps also an expression of Aoskar's least-commonly-noted area of concern, Opportunity, as it would be likely that his Prime priesthood would be heavily encouraged to seek out what they could on the planes beyond.

Some records indicate the existence of prayers spoken prior to every passage through a portal or related phenomenon, though of course any transcription of the actual content of those prayers has long since been purged. However, from context it can be gathered that they were basic benedictions asking for protection and good fortune on the journey taken beyond. Merchants especially seemed to take these prayers to heart, though whether this is merely because of the well-fitting nature of their occupation with a deity of planar travel and opportunity or because of explicit attempts by the cult of Aoskar to make inroads with the guilds of the time is still unknown.

Unfortunately, little more can be said: there exist no surviving records of Aoskarian temple proceedings or rituals, all having long since been destroyed in the millennia since his fall, and the only known figure who could still speak to them is, unsurprisingly, quite reluctant to do so.

Known Remaining Followers

  • Aola (Pl/♂ human/cleric 4/N), practicing priest in the Sigilian underground
  • Argathorn (Pl/♂ black dragon/great wyrm/N), former proxy of Chronepsis exiled to Agathion
  • Fell (Px/∅ dabus/oracle 5/Sign of One/N), proxy of Aoskar
  • Garmundi (Pl/♂ dwarf/adept 3/N), prophet-in-training

See Also

References

  • Doors to the Unknown
  • In the Cage, pg.6,23,54
  • On Hallowed Ground, pg.182
  • Planescape: Torment
  • Uncaged: Faces of Sigil, pg.37,112
Personal tools