Ianna, Matron of Ravens

The Erenel site is undergoing major changes and lore updates. Please note only articles listed in the Gamingbrew Discord are finalized. All other articles should be considered outdated lore.
When asked about Ianna, most people will mention ravens, a hatred of the undead, or something to do with fate and death. While these are all true, our Mother is so much more than that. She is the Desolation.
— Fatebearer Voxilion
Ianna is a Primal Deity and the goddess of Death, Fate, Solitude, and Winter. She is commonly known as the Matron of Ravens and for her hatred of the undead. Ianna and her followers are duty-bound to help the dead move into the afterlife and stand before Bedoma’s judgment. In truth, Ianna cares little about mortal society or matters of good and evil.   Instead, she focuses on the divine task which fell upon her as she ate the decaying fruit before the Great Sacrifice. The Matron knows all things will eventually die, whether they be mortals, gods or worlds. She knows she will one day help her fellow deities pass into their afterlives and seeks to make sure their deaths are not interfered with.

Worship

Ianna is worshipped by all people, including those who know nothing about the deities. Most are wary of the Matron of Ravens, avoiding her temples if possible. Yet all who die are welcome to enter its grounds for final rites to ease their passage into the afterlife.

Divine Domains

Death, Grave, Winter

Divine Symbols & Sigils

The most common ornate symbols used are ravens, black feathers, skulls, and bones. Her colors are often neutral - mostly blacks, whites, and grays, to symbolize the desolation and her interest in solitude.

Tenets of Faith

Embrace the Ultimate Fate

Death comes to all mortals and is natural. Trying to avoid the inevitable end will cause more fear, and instead should be met with acceptance. Fate is similar to death. That which is destined cannot be changed, and trying to manipulate outcome will instead lead to your destiny’s fulfillment.  

Emptiness Brings Wisdom

Much of life consists of intelligent creatures acting upon emotions. Passionate outbursts often cloud one's judgment and lead to poor results. If we empty ourselves of passion, emotion will not interfere with one’s aspiration.  

Oppose All Undeath

Creatures like vampires and liches are vile creatures that attempt to avoid passing through the Matron of Raven’s domain. This not only disrupts the inevitable but causes difficulty for the living. All undeath must be eradicated, so they return to the natural cycle of death and fate.

Holidays

Night of the Lost
10th of Claruls
Often celebrated in the peak of summer, this festival is a jovial celebration with Ianna, Matron of Ravens. The Night of the Lost provides an evening for the living to come together and remember the loved ones they have lost. Local temples will host vigils and offer space for anyone that wishes to use it. Since this festival is intentionally public, it often involves food, drink, and storytelling. Offerings are given in hopes the Matron of Ravens will persuade Bedoma, the Last Guide to pass favorable judgment on themselves and their loved ones when their time comes.
Divine Classification
Primal Deity
Realm
Honorary & Occupational Titles
Matron of Ravens, Goddess of Death, the Desolation
Children

Black Shroud Citadel

The Black Shroud Citadel on Broken Reach edge stands as one of the few safe havens for mortals who travel to The Below. While not a welcoming place, the Matron and her armies have thus far been prosperous in forcing a stalemate with the Vyse Tyranal, the Fallen Elf and his necromantic ideals.   This sprawling military city surrounded by defensive wards and outposts serves as Ianna’s home as she watches over the Broken Reach. A perpetual shroud placed on the city by the Matron keeps it under eternal darkness while allowing Ianna to control what information is revealed and who may enter, making communication outside its walls even more challenging.
 
by Jeff Brown

Joining the Flock

Within the Matron’s church, clergies are considered of equal authority based on the common understanding of Ianna’s first tenet. Most regions will accept the occupancy of followers of the Goddess of Death, but others tend to view her disciples with suspicion. As her influence has grown, this has naturally caused the rise of a handful of influential sects. Generally, members will refer to themselves only as a follower of the Matron rather than using the specific name of their religion.   Ferriers: Followers that have the least experience are called Ferriers. A Ferrier’s general responsibilities include managing bodies, performing standard funerals, and occasionally providing counsel to those that have lost a loved one.   Flock Callers: Those that gain enough experience eventually become Flock Callers. Responsibilities include guiding the Ferriers in their advancement, leading funeral services for highly influential people, and being the primary teachers for a temple.   Fate Bearers: Only the most dedicated and experienced ever earn the title of Fate Bearer. Fate Bearers will lead the rites and funeral process for a person that provided an excellent service to The Matron of Ravens. They also are the spiritual center for all temples in a broader region.  

The Desolate

Desolate members are known for their role in the Matron’s third tenet. Filled with righteousness, they stand opposed to undeath, protecting the living from risen scourges while seeking to preserve the sanctity of the dead.

The Desolate

by Grobelski

The Desolate obediently follows Ianna’s will and actively seeks out adventuring groups, happily slaughtering undead deep in catacombs or destroying a liches phylactery in her name. Where the Desolate differ is in their zealotry. Opposing the defiling of the dead is expected, with many refusing to even loot a lifeless corpse in an attempt to provide them dignity.   As the Shadow Wars continue in the Below and the Fallen Elf uses not only undead but demons and devils in his pursuit to overtake the Matron, many Desolate members have begun to include hunting demons and devils into their repertoire.

Personal History

As Al’Madoon slept following his creation of the Elves, an unripened fruit fell from Aymara’s branches, landing near the trunk of the great tree. The Primal Beings were unsure what to do with the fallen fruit. It was not yet ready to provide a child and began to rot. Worried about what may happen if left unattended, Ianna the Raven quickly descended upon the decomposing fruit, eating it in three large gulps.   While the other Primal Beings watched, Ianna began to transform, becoming more humanoid-like but retaining some form of her raven's feathers. The decomposing fruit opened her mind to new ideas.   It is believed that the decomposing fruit consumed by Ianna has enhanced her Primal abilities in some way. Though she may not possess the pure might of Ødger, the insight she may have gained has been a topic of debate in academies and around campfires in Erenel.

Character Portrait image: by Gamingbrew
Powered by World Anvil