Writing Mondays are reserved for writing topics relating to the side projects and Sons of Lur.
Last week we covered the divisions of Rhegan’s military/magical might, so today we’ll be talking about Rhegan’s magic and where it comes from.
So we had Rangers, Riders and Mages last week, but what magic do they do?
Well, lets first start with where magic comes from (I guess this’ll have to count as a faith post too).
Most of the peoples of Rhegan venerate the Goddess above any other pagan deity, with the large temples erected in her honour. These places are grand monuments of pale stone, centred about an enclosed tower with a large marble pillar at the heart. These pillars are said, when meditated upon, can take on the form of the Goddess and show her to the faithful – and affectionately referred to as the Goddess Stones.
The Goddess herself is seen as a deity of life giving, of humanity, day and creation, a mother unto her people. Her followers wear ribbons of white of holy days and children are given coins embossed with winged horses for protection.
The Goddess is depicted with her arms open, or cradling a child to her breast and long flowing hair. She is always serenely peaceful.
The Hunter is the Goddess’ consort – some say lover, some say husband depending on the teaching of their childhood. He is a darker deity, representing her opposite, and because of his wild ways he is not favoured by the general population. The Rangers follow him for his way with the animals and the forest and small woodland shrines can be found near to any large Ranger Tower. His followers normally wear a bone or wooden amulet bearing a rune of one of the Hunter’s messengers: Karak the Raven, Denath the Wolf, Gos the Boar and Taran, the great Royal Stag.
The Hunter is usually depicted as a Greenman – a face of leaves or a wild looking young man with a circlet and antlers.
This couple were said to have come out of the people in the last age when magic did not exist and with their arrival, the lands experienced peace and plenty. They had two almost-human children and it is from them that magic flowed into the people, heralding the Golden Age. These children were Lur and Mar.
Lur is the favoured child – golden haired, gifted with weapons and most animals, he is called to by many mothers wanting blessed children and the few peoples of the Northern Wastes who see him as a survivor and their ancestor. Lur fathered five great houses of magic from which all magic comes (understand the Sons of Lur bit now?).
He has no real temples, but his followers keep a small alcove in their home or village where a crafted blade hangs. The Northlanders wear Lur’s name along with their family name tokens on small silver disks strapped around their left arm. For a man to lose this token is a sign he is a: useless, b: an exile, c: outcast and without Lur’s guiding arm. However, if a man’s family dies, he keeps his token to carry their name with him.
Lur was gifted a sword by the Dragons when he was born and his sign is the sun.
Mar is Lur’s forgotten twin brother with his father’s colouring, dark haired and pale. He was cunning and possessed a gift at the “slippery” forms of magic which eventually were branded as “blood magics”. He had some animal friends and was beloved by all as Lur’s other half. However he grew jealous of Lur’s destiny (as most mythical brothers are) and he turned against him – conspiring to put his own bloodline upon the throne.
The children of the Goddess and the Hunter quarrelled and a war came between them, leading to the Goddess’s creatures taking sides. This is now the reason why some animals are mistrusted (like Raven and other carrion birds, Shrykes and wolves – though wolves are just misunderstood, they took both sides)
Mar was punished by death – to be cast in stone for the remainder of time and has since dropped out of general recognition apart from obscure historians and his scattered followers.
He was given a seeing orb by the Dragons and his sign is the moon with it’s changing face.
It is to be mentioned that Dragons existed before the Goddess and her lover, and some speculate that there is an All-Mother somewhere who created these beings before. The Kotorian people believe in a three-fold Goddess who they name the "All-Mother”, who is made up of three sisters who represent birth, life and death.
Now then, how does this relate to magic?
Well – Lur fathered five children who in turn bore more children who eventually became five great houses. And in these great houses magic developed into identifiable skills.
The Five Houses are named Forest, River, Desert (Magic), Mountain and Bonded (Dragon) on where the house settled. Most typically the family magic flows through the blood, leading to the children bearing the gift’s of the parents, though sometimes it jumps between the houses due to the original intermingling leading to the dispersion of magic.
Forest magics are to do with animals, herb craft, tracking and other forest craft. These are sneered at by some magic users as being hedgewitchery, attempts at making magic and claim it should not be named one of the five (and that the mage house should be split)
River magics are about fluid shapes (shape-shifting), controlling water and the weather – intangible elements that come and go like the tide. Shape-shifters can possess some forest skills but have no great skill.
Desert magics cover all magic – Blood magic, geomancy, necromancy, curses, hexes, illusions, craftings, potions, summonings, enchantments etc. Blood magic is banned and any child/adult found to possess such gifts that require blood and other dark skills are cast out. If they make it to the Southern Desert, they can find a place amongst the mages of the desert.
Mountain appears to have no magic and are mocked by many mages. They are known for their strength, loyalty, crafting of stone and wood and for their leadership.
Bonded riders are recognised for magical potential for their closeness with dragons and some who have Elder Dragons can do small forms of magic. They are not naturally magical and are set apart because of Lur’s bonding with the Elder Dragon Lorik during the Long Night and of Lur’s son Jaret’s bond with Golden Morrow.
I guess this section may be updated once I work out some of the kinks – but most of their beliefs are centred around an ancient mythos where somehow the Goddess is creation itself and yet came out of the people. wtf?!