Gilei Hillen Character in Lethea | World Anvil

Gilei Hillen

Saint and Saviour

He led us against a seemingly unstoppable enemy and somehow a handful of us survived to tell his tale. The world owes him a great dept. Strange that a girl who just happened to be incredibly friendly ended up becoming a goddess, while the best we can hope for Hillen is sainthood.
  Gilei Hillen was a Brelish man who saved the South from eternal suffering and oppression. His life story is one of legend. His deeds are taught to young boys to aspire them to greatness. Through his actions and lessons, he spawned the largest branch of Aprēaq Hūril, the religion of Hillenism. Hillen supposedly received messages from the Aprēa, the goddess who he had been devoted to. He had given his life so that the children of future generations could sleep peacefully and for such a deed, he was declared a saint and ascended to serve beside Aprēa.  

Legendary Life

The man of legend was born roughly two centuries after the start of the Invasion to a fisherman's daughter. His father's identity has been lost to time. Some think he went off to fight in the war but failed to make it back home; others claim that he had ditched Hillen's mother after learning of the pregnancy. Then there are also a few who say that the saint lacked a father and that his mother was granted a divine blessing from Abrea herself, granting her a child that could bring forth salvation.   Whether by Abrea's plan or a tragic turn of fate, Hillen's mother gave birth to the child prematurely, but her strength had failed her. She only held her child in her arms for mere minutes before drawing her final breath. The whole event occurred on the holy lake in the company of hardy fishermen on top their maritime vessel.   When the fishers and the babe reached dry ground, the father of Hillen's mother disavowed him and called him a murderous leech. The grief of losing his only daughter had deeply affected him, and his fury knew no bounds. Before things could get out of hand, the Kireseria of Sentijk interfered and offered to take the child from his sight. Hillen's grandfather was eager to get rid of him, and so the Abreanist clergy and the Kireseria took on the responsibilities of taking care of him.  

Life in the Clergy

The local Kireseria took on a motherly role for the child. She gave him his name and looked after him all day and night. As the town of Sentijk had still been a small settlement back in those days, the Kireseria would have probably known Hillen's mother a bit. Perhaps the reason for her generosity could be explained with a feeling of love (likely platonic, but perhaps even romantic) between the two women.  

Lost Documents

The Kireseriati of Sentijk are renowned for their tradition of keeping detailed records of nearly everyone in the town, yet for some reason, all documents that should mention Hillen are missing. The clerics there have claimed that the records were stolen when a mob of Hillenists ransacked the town at 66 AA, but there are many who don't believe their side of the story.   Zealous Hillenists have for centuries attempted to breach the clergy's secretive record vaults but to no avail. They say that the documents should contain information regarding Hillen's family and early life.
  Much of Hillen's early childhood must have been rather mundane. He had to work around the Kirevassa, cleaning rooms and delivering supplies for the other clerics. Eventually, as more and more refugees flooded the streets, he learned of the reality of life and of the Invasion that had been going on for centuries.   After his fourteenth birthday, the Kireseria, a woman she had proudly called mother, gave her an offer. Hillen could either live a life as a normal man or he could serve as a Preacher for the rest of his days in the clergy. A part of him had wondered what he could do with such freedom, but he knew deep inside that he belonged with his family in the Kirevassa. Hillen stayed and gave an oath to forever preach the word of the Lady of the Lake.
  From that point onwards, his life became more strange with each passing year. Supposedly the goddess had spoken to him and that had led him to start his holy war to liberate the world. A war that would ultimately end in the The Ascension of Hillen. After his coming of age, it is hard to know what is true and what else is just an embellished part of an already magnificent story of heroism. His childhood, however, is set in stone. What records have remained from the time period all confirm his existence and the peculiar nature of his birth.
Divine Classification
37 BA 1 AA 38 years old
Circumstances of Death
Died at the Battle of Athe after setting off a large explosion.
Light grey
Short, straight, light brown
Skin Tone/Pigmentation
Pale olive
1.84 m
81 kg
Related Myths
Hillenēq Hūril
Organization | Jul 8, 2023

Hillenism is the largest branch of the Aprēan religion. Followers of the faith believe in the teachings of Hillen, the hero whose sacrifice saved the world from the Invasion.

The Ascension of Hillen
Myth | Dec 26, 2023

The legend of how Saint Hillen sacrificed himself and his army to save the people of southern Lethea


Cover image: by Tom Gainor


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