Gods in Elona
Faith flourishes in Elona, just as it does around the world. From the highest reaches of the Shiverpeaks to the deepest valleys of Elona, all of humanity invokes the names of the same deities, chanting prayers and building monuments to life, death, strength, survival, and magic. The names, forms, and faces of these gods do not change—they are eternal and immutable—but in Istan, Kourna, and Vabbi, statues and shrines to these gods have a distinctly Elonian appearance.
Dwayna: Elonian artists sometimes show this goddess of Life and Air rising from lands ravaged by drought, disease, or plague. A Dervish assuming the Form of Dwayna towers over mortal men, surrounded by elegant wings.
Balthazar: Statues of this god of Fire and War show him holding a greatsword, sometimes with a pair of faithful battle hounds sitting at his feet. Some Elonian art portrays him with majestic lions or other predatory companions crouching beside him. A Dervish taking the Form of Balthazar is a fiery presence, assaulting the world with armor as resilient as heavy plate and a weapon as lethal as the deity’s greatsword.
Grenth: Monuments to the god of Death and Ice portray him with the body of a man and the narrow skull of a beast. Throughout Elona, many of these statues have piles of bone and ivory beneath them, left as offerings by anonymous and fearful commoners. When life is difficult, zealous worshipers leave offerings of flesh and sinew, showing their devotion with fanatic displays of sacrifice. A Dervish assuming the Form of Grenth glares at the world through a bestial skull, measuring the worth of each fallen corpse.
Lyssa: Tyrian artists often portray the goddess of Beauty and Illusion as two exquisitely beautiful women entwined in an eternal dance. In Elona, the masks and the dance may change, but Lyssa’s dual nature does not. She is beautiful to some and terrifying to others. A Dervish assuming the Form of Lyssa wears multiple masks, channeling blessings for mayhem and magic.
Melandru: Most statues of the goddess of Earth and Nature show her as a tall, winged dryad rising from a tree-shaped base. Many temples use magic to shape that shrine from a living tree; for example, Elonian sculptures often rise from the base of a mebayah or a rooted dreamflower. A Dervish assuming the Form of Melandru has an arboreal appearance, acting with the same resolve as a tree with roots deep in the earth.
Paragons and Dervishes
Two professions unique to this continent are known for their devotion to their deities. Paragons, the guardian angels of humanity, believe they are chosen by the gods. They align their actions with the will of higher powers, accepting that their fates are predetermined. Although each profession has a patron deity, Dervishes serve all the gods of the Elonian pantheon, praying to each in turn when circumstances demand it. The most powerful of these holy warriors transform themselves into living representations of the true gods, taking their “forms” to enact their holy will. Even the lowest initiate knows: without reverence for these five gods, all of civilization would fail.