Shavash, God of Winter
shuh-VAHSH (a.k.a. The Pale Sun, Crystalbones, Lord of the Long Night)
As a body needs rest, so too does the world, closing its eyes and dreaming in the dark.A lean and taciturn god, Shavash rules the bitter winter months.
Holy Books & Codes
Stories for the Long Night: This collection of short parables emphasizes perseverance and patience. It is often read by the faithful around the fire on cold winter nights. In many bearfolk communities, it is customary to act out these stories for holy days. Different editions often contain different stories, though there is a core canon that is always present. There is some debate among churches as to the definitive edition, and visitors to distant churches have sometimes unknowingly offended by citing a story not accepted as Shavash's true word by the locals.
Divine Symbols & Sigils
A stick figure of a tree with five branches on a bare, white circle.
Tenets of Faith
The Rekindling: On midwinter's night, Shavash's followers light bonfires to rekindle warmth in the world. They break out their tastiest winter stores and select meads that were fermented in the summer for one night of wild revelry in the midst of the harsh winter. It is generally believed that the number and intensity of these celebrations determine the warmth and abundance of the summer, and that if it should ever happen that no one honors the Rekindling, the spring simply will not come.
But Crystalbones knew that he would never be able to see his love again, for her realm was the bright and abundant summer, while his own duties lay in the dark and the cold.Legend says that once Shavash was young, though it is hard to imagine. In that time, he met Galyu, a bright and effervescent god who loved to dance. He admired her from afar, certain that she could not care for one such as himself. When Calitai's pot of life tipped over and created the world , there was initially chaos. The gods did not know what to do with these small mad sentients who immediately began building and changing. It soon became clear, however, that they would run both themselves and the world into the ground with their constant motion. Galyu loved the sentients fiercely and pleaded with the other gods for some solution that did not involve wiping the new creatures from existence. Shavash quietly took on the task of slowing them and their destructive enthusiasm. First, he bestowed sleep upon them. Every night they were forced to close their eyes and renew. When this proved to be insufficient, Shavash sighed his crystal breath into the world and froze it. Galyu was devastated, but he promised her that each year she could thaw the world and allow the sentients their industry for a time. In this way, he tempered their breakneck impact and eased the fears of the other gods. The sentients were allowed to live and thrive, but in this act Shavash doomed himself to be forever separated from Galyu. She dances the world each summer, while he waits through the longest nights and dreams of her.
- Divine Classification
- Pale yellow irises without pupils, like the midwinter sun.
- His fur is thick over sunken sides, his fat stores depleted after a long winter.