Ashes of Penance
ago, a civilisation created a war so massive that it
summoned the direct intervention of the powers
themselves. Pantheons warred. A world died. The remaining
gods paused in their fighting, saw what they had done,
and felt sorrow. Wading through the wreck of their world
and the burnt bits of their worshippers the gods bowed
their heads in prayer to the Great Unknown before shaking
hands and vowing to fight no more. Before departing for
Elysium to begin their new existences, they set up a
memorial in the Quasielemental Plane of Ash.
ash dunes part. Daylight emerges, revealing a great city
filled with art and knowledge. This is the best of what
was, and it's preserved here in the midst of a plane
called the Snuffing as a gesture of humility and as a
reminder of what was wrought.
aura of peace and disappointment here is palpable, and
any fighting suffers a penalty of -12 to hit, with a 60%
chance of a combat spell failing. If anything is
destroyed, the gods will replace it in a century or two.
Rasts, quasielementals and other such creatures tend to
avoid the place.
every hundred cycles great numbers of the sartarin tribe
of ruvoka come to Penance dressed in sackcloth to confess
their sins and make resolutions. In respect, they model
their civilisation closely on the lost one, and borrow
the books here to teach their children. Any harm done to
the city or its relics will be quickly avenged by the
Sartarin, but they will aid those who come honestly
is said that not every veteran of the divine war has
reformed, and that a fierce god of war seeks the ashes of
Penance and its destruction. It seems that the peoples of
these unrepentant gods are not represented in the city's
archives, and angry at this snub, Baatific minions sweep
the plane of Ash on dark wings, trying to penetrate the
wards of obscurity hiding the shrine. The ruvoka
carefully screen those they trust with the knowledge of
the realm's location, but what if they fail?
The Faithful of the
by Luan Fei Lan of the
Faithful of the Flame (Fire Eaters)
came to speak of our true headquarters, not in Gehenna,
but of Ash, where the icon of our sect drifts, a
testimony of the pain of life. Countless generations of
mortals ago, a power came to blows with a rival, and
lost. Or perhaps it dared to disobey a superior. Its
physical body was thrown into the fires of Gehenna, where
we have built our Temple of the Fallen. There, for
countless eons, the power burned, until its body turned
to ash. The victorious power flung the incinerated corpse
into the plane of Ash, where we periodically pilgrimage
to revel the memory of never ending immortal
the ashen mass causes pain to the skin. We wear little
and light clothing as we dig and explore the corpse. We
learn to sleep as we lie on the ash; the pain eventually
subsides to a dull ache. At that time, we journey deeper
into the body, for the memory of burning becomes stronger
inside. Our greater followers have felt the same fire in
the centre of the Ashen body as at Gehenna.
ash still reverberates with godly power, and we all burn
within it, for the sufferings of a million mortals pale
to that of a god. We invite anyone to come and meditate,
but no sacrilegious behaviour will be tolerated.
Sometimes we derive as much enlightenment from the
suffering others as much as our own.
still seek out the Astral corpse of our power, to unite
the physical memory with the spiritual memory. Perhaps
then we will know true suffering.
The Basics |
TSR's Inner Planes ]
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powerful residents and most famous sites of
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1999, text by various authors,
graphics by Jon Winter and Jeremiah Golden