Servants of Death
Death walks among you. It is your choice whether you greet it as a friend, or struggle as you go into the long night.There are few things constant among all species that live on Istralar. The most important and universal is death - the ending to every journey, whether stalled by resurrections and undeath, or allowed to proceed as usual. Death has many servants, some knowing their role, others thinking they stand against death and the grave. From the doctors and clerics who seek to help to the ill and ease their journey to the afterlife to the bravest fighters and fearsome barbarians that charge across battlefields to cleave the life from the living, all serve death in some way. Indeed, without these servants of death, life would be vastly different. If there was no turmoil to necessitate wars, if there were no laws to oppress and upset, if good and evil could agree, and if life could go on forever, the world might be a place of peace and unending neutrality. As it is not, the servants are vital: those who serve death prevent triumph from one side or another, rising up where they are needed to shape reality. To lend fate a crueller edge - or perhaps a kinder one.
A helping hand, or a clutched blade. Which do you prefer, wanderer?It's almost too easy to fall into the role of a servant of death. Taking any action that directly results in death - whether that be a dose of medicine that helps ease the pain, or a frantic fireball towards a group of enemies - inevitably places one in the role, as does healing those who go on to kill thousands. Those dedicated to deities of death - or Pharasma, Death incarnate - take it a step further, often working on their deity's behalf to further a specific cause. Psychopomps and their worshippers take on more direct roles of assisting souls and hunting down undead as opposed to the general causing of death.
What happens when we die, mother?There are no overt benefits to serving death other than to serve one of the most intrinsic purposes of life. Those who accept their role generally find the process of grief easier to comprehend, and accept their eventual end with a near-supernatural grace. Those who struggle against the concept oft have troubled relationships with death, and are more likely to suffer in grief and depression. Here, past trauma plays the largest role.
We all make choices in life, dear.Whilst the most common tools are poisons, blades, and damaging spells, there are some more unique tools that truly dedicated servants of death utilise. The most crazed or ambitious look to conquer empires and drive entire armies at one another -- the Amethystine Regiment is a rather horrifying example of a tool utilised by the Medimian Empire, for instance. The more twisted may use only their words. There is little that cannot be inspired by the right speech, and the urge to kill - either to kill others, or one's self - can be inflicted by the right sentences, the right combination of abusive whispers. Yet despite the depravity of these, do not fail to consider one of the most dangerous tools in any arsenal: kindness.
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