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Divine Vessel

Those who speak the word of the Gods

About

Divine Vessels are mortals that have been blessed from birth with the power of the Gods. One Vessel is born for each of The Eight, as well as the exiled Dark God. The These individuals are brought to the main Temple of their God at a young age, where they are met by the current Vessel. They are educated and raised by their predecessor, and eventually in a grand ritual are made the official Vessel.

Vessels are attended by Knights of their God, and are generally confined to their Temple. They leave on occasion to attend local festivals or rituals, but mostly remain within the labyrinthine depths of the Temples dedicated to their God.

Up to eighteen Vessels may be alive at any one time; nine who are currently fulfilling their role, and nine who are yet to be trained.  

Recognizing a Vessel

Mortals born as Divine Vessels are distinguished from others via three traits:

1. The mortal will have distinctive eyes patterned after the God they serve.
Vessel Eyes
by CrimzN
Eyes alone are often not enough to determine if someone is a Vessel; the people of Kitain are born with bright red eyes similar to the Vessel of Truth, and the people of Miria tend to be born with golden eyes similar to the Vessel of Deceit.

Those born with eyes like those of the Dark God are often shunned by society.

2. The mortal will have a birthmark in the shape of the God's symbol somewhere on their body.
Vessel Markings
by CrimzN
Similar to the markings that adorn the Knights all Vessels are born with a perfect birthmark in the shape of their God's symbol. However, unlike markings, the birthmark is natural in color. It is the combination of the distinctive eyes and the birthmark that set Vessels apart from other individuals. Some may try to hide their birthmarks, particularly in the case of Vessels of the Dark God.

3. The mortal will have very limited control of Divine Magic.
Divine Magic
by CrimzN
Vessels are able to control the two most powerful types of divine magic; the golden Celestial Magic and the silvery Essentia Magic. Only the four vessels of the Elder Gods are able to control Celestial. The Vessels of the Great Gods can only control Essentia.

Celestial magic is the very fabric the world and is extremely difficult to control without training. If a Vessel is attempting to hide their status, but has received no training, it will be easy to spot them due to losing control of their magic. This is particularly true of Celestial, as it craves to be used to fulfill all of the user's desires. Both Celestial and Essentia are corrosive to the touch for mortals. Celestial will literally eat away at organic matter, while Essentia will return the mortal body to its original materials, more Essentia. Vessels must be extremely careful in their use of these magics as unrestrained use can cause massive destruction.

Appointment

Vessels are not appointed in a traditional sense. Unlike Knights, who make their deals deliberately with the Gods, and Revenants, who voluntarily sever that connection, Vessels are born chosen by their particular God. The God does not have direct control over the mortal that they choose to be their Vessel, only when it will occur.

Duties

Vessels are the religious figureheads of the world of Tarin. They reside exclusively in the Temples, and act as the High Priests/Priestesses of their God's sect. The Vessel speaks the word of their God, both from messages sent to their minds, and through direct possession.

When not directly giving messages to the mortals, Vessels are expected to handle issues between mortals that they are able to from the Temple, or to assign Knights to tasks they cannot complete themselves. Vessels will also train their replacements when they are brought to the temple.

In extreme cases, Vessels are used by their Gods as the figureheads of their divine armies.

Benefits

  • Semi-Immortal Life: Until the next Vessel of the same God is born, the Vessel will remain alive and unaging.
  • Suspended Aging: The Vessel will grow to 28 years of age, and then remain in a state of suspended aging until the next Vessel is born. Once the next Vessel is born, the Vessel will begin aging again, and eventually pass naturally.
  • Access to Divine Magic
  • Influence

Accoutrements & Equipment

Vessels will be garbed in ceremonial clothing distinctive to each God. Their clothing is based directly on what the God or Goddess is most often depicted as wearing.

The four Vessels of the Elder Gods also bear the four Relics.
Relics
The Divine Relics. From left to right, the Relic of Truth, the Relic of Chaos, the Relic of Order, and the Relic of Deceit. by CrimzN
The Relics themselves appear to be pieces of cracked antlers made entirely of Vitralus. In fact, the Relics are four parts of a whole, a large section of an antler of a Celestial being that was pushed back by the Elder Gods. The Relics are made of a highly refined form of Vitralus, a stone of pure, crystalized Celestial magic, and as such are extremely dangerous to the touch. Vessels are extremely careful to avoid direct contact with their Relics.

Relics are extremely powerful magical artifacts. If pushed, a Vessel can tap into their power and unleash destruction upon their enemies, or provide direct support to allies. If all four were to be collected, the individual who held the combined artifact would be granted more power than even that of the Elder Gods. As a direct result of this, Vessels and their Relics are under constant guard by Knights.

Grounds for Removal/Dismissal

The details of removal of Vessels differs between those of the Elder Gods, and those of the Great Gods.   Vessels of the Elder Gods (Truth, Deception, Order and the Dark God) will remain at their posts and completing their duties until they begin to show early signs of Ascension. The Vessel will then retire from the public eye, and await the birth of their replacement. Once the new Vessel has been brought to their temple, they are expected to train their replacement in the use of their Divine Magic, as well as their daily duties to their Gods. Once officially appointed, the Vessel will Ascend, leaving the Mortal Realms, and travelling to the Divine Realms to be with their God.   Vessels of the Great Gods (Creation, Destruction, Life, Death, and Rebirth) will continue their roles generally for a period of three hundred years. Once they have served for this long, the next Vessel is born. Then, similarly to the Vessels of the Elder Gods, the new Vessel will train their replacement.Once the new Vessel is officially appointed, the older Vessel is able to retire in peace until their inevitable passing.

Cultural Significance

Vessels are revered as Gods on Tarin, and are given worship in the God's place. Mortals may make pilgrimages to the Temples where the Vessels stay in order to receive blessings from the Gods.

The only exception to this are Vessels of the Dark God. These Vessels tend to hide themselves unless born Nissayrian, as Nissayria the only territory that still openly worships the Dark God. Vessels of the Dark God that are born outside of this territory are generally social pariahs. None would be so foolish as to openly deride a Vessel, but few choose to befriend the Vessels of the Dark God.

Odder still, the Vessels of the Dark God always seem to vanish under mysterious circumstances.
Type
Religious, Special
Alternative Naming
Vessel
Source of Authority
Similar to Knights, Vessels gain their authority from the God that they serve.
Length of Term
Lifetime. Vessels are bound to serve their God until the God deems it fit for a new Vessel to be trained. However, it is rare for a God to keep a Vessel alive for more than two to three hundred years.

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Cover image: by ChaosTearKitsune & CrimzN

Comments

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29 May, 2018 00:53

Lovely usage of images to show how to identify a Vessel! I can't wait to see more from you as you build your world : D

27 Jun, 2018 21:20

ooOoooOoOOOOoo i like it!! do the Vessels wear something under the Relics to make sure that they don’t Get Fried? either way, not trustin those gold-eyed deciet peeps...

1 Jul, 2018 14:23

Thank you!! :D Vessels tend to not have to move all that much in their day to day lives, minimizing the risk of contacting the Relic. They also train with objects that look identical to the relics (same weight as well), and learn how to walk and move without it touching their skin!

27 Jun, 2018 21:22

First off i love the artwork which is amazing and just blows me away at how talented you are. and the good use of the template. I like how this rank you have to be born into it and chosen by a god to be their divine vessel. I want to explore more of your world and the gods that live in it !

1 Jul, 2018 14:24

Aaa! Thank you so much! :D It's been really fun getting stuff like this down on paper. I hope to have articles about the Gods soon!

27 Jun, 2018 21:22

O M G - I love the detail and illustrations in this! Really immersive worldbuilding details!


Check out my worldbuilding in the dark fantasy world of Melior
1 Jul, 2018 14:25

Q//Q Thank you, TJ! I had a lot of fun with this! I've been working on Tarin for about 10 years now!

Forgemaster Dimitris
Dimitris Havlidis
28 Jun, 2018 05:23

Oh that is indeed a very interesting and strong article. Is it my eyes or destruction and deceit have the same eyes?

1 Jul, 2018 14:26

Thank you so much, Dimitris! They do have very similar eyes as of right now; Deceit is Destruction's mother! Destruction has little flecks of red in his eyes, but I'm considering changing the color to an orange so they stand out more from the others.