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Archbishop Sapphira

Life

Her Majestic Eminence, first Archbishop of The Pentan Church, Founder of the Faith of the Five, Leader of Rehu and Governess of Oro City. Sapphira started life as a goatherd in the Bekkupe Mountains of the North, far from any civilization. She was a simple child, honest and forthright, leading her charges with skill and grace. It was upon these mountains, in the 18th year of her life, that she first encountered the gods through divine vision. Though unlearned in the written word of her homeland, Sapphira penned The Book of Visions in what would become the High Church Script, cataloguing her visions. From the mountains she went forth, spreading the good news of the Five. It is said that every town she passed was converted in a single night, and every city bowed before her in humility and acknowledgment of her prophetic nature. This period of time has been dubbed "The Bloodless Coup", wherein every nation of Rehu bowed to the gods without a single live being taken in rebellion. She reigned over Rehu from Oro City, the holiest of sites and the evolution of the first town she brought to the light. No longer a sleepy hamlet but instead the greatest city in the land.

Death

Her reign lasted for 200 years, her mortal life extended by her power and the grace of the gods. During that time, peace was maintained throughout Rehu and all was well. This period of time was named the "Theocracy", as the Pentan Church occupied every aspect of the known world in culture, military, bureaucracy, medicine and of course, religion. It was said that during the waning days of the Theocracy, Sapphira saw the wickedness that had festered in the hearts of her people and departed for the Spiritual Realm to speak on their behalf to the gods, imploring them to keep her people safe. When she arrived there, Justice had her look back upon the world she had left to see what they had done in her absence. The darkness that dwelt in the hearts of those glutted on the peace she had given them had spread and in a single night, all that she had built for them had been ruined. Sapphira begged the gods to forgive them but they would not and instead, they pulled from Mortal-Kind the connection to their power, claiming that they did not deserve such tools if wickedness would be their end. They bade Sapphira stay with them- she alone being holy enough to remain in their presence. Knowing that there was no use arguing with a god, the Archbishop decided to stay, arguing the case for all mortals with the gods, even to this day.  

Myth and Reality

Propaganda and pleasant fictions aside, it is important to distinguish between myth and reality. Sapphira did live and was a goatherd who received visions of the "gods", and she did spread the word to the surrounding towns and cities, though there is frankly no such thing as a "bloodless coup". The Dragonborn of Kiraga were deeply opposed to a new religion and though they were subdued by Sapphira's early bishops and their divine power, they always resented her influence in their society. It was this conflict that led to the creation of the Forsaken, as a number of Dragonborn abandoned their home to pursue the power of the gods. Regardless of means, Rehu was united under the Archbishop's rule and for 200 years, relative peace did reign.   While Sapphira's divine power was considerable, she was by no means immortal. In fact, her lifespan was no greater than any other Human's and so, when she died at the ripe age of ninety, the bishops of her fledgling church had a problem. Despite their amassed political and divine power, the bishops feared that the death of their holy ruler would shatter the peace she had worked so hard to establish. So it was that, in the name of order, a facsimile was created. A divine double, a fraud. Archbishop "Sapphira" continued to rule from Oro City and began delegating more and more to her bishops and the Ordos of her church. By the time her bicentennial celebration was approaching, none but the Cardinals of Oro had seen Sapphira in person in years. There was talk of revealing her demise to her people, but the increasing threat of heresy and discontent kept the lie going until it was too late, and the Theocracy collapsed. Many historians in later years surmised that such a fate was the truth, but the firsthand records of the truth have long since been destroyed.  

Connection to the Travelers

Sapphira herself was ignorant of the true creation of the gods, being shown her visions by The Drunkard as to lay the groundwork for the new religion. She had been chosen based on her humility and earnest nature by the Traveler to be the head of the church and set on a path of unification and peace. The Drunkard blames all of the Calignance on her choice to only show Sapphira the First Five, fearing that the revelation of all Ten would be too much for a young mind and divided world.
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