The Twilight of Man
Afar, the Goldsower: God of Trade, Commerce, Wealth, Luck, Skill
Symbol: A gold coin with an image of the god in profile.
Sacred Places: Markets, bazaars, trade roads, mints, game halls.
Worshippers: Merchants, traders, gamblers, nobles, the rich, the money-hungry, those looking to get rich quick, those in need of luck.
Favored Weapon: Rod.
Favored Colors: Gold, copper.
Afar appears as a middle-aged man with a bushy black beard, often dressed in festive colors and beaming benevolently. He rides a black tiger and wields two rods: one made of gold, to bestow fortune and transform all it touches to gold, and one made of lead, ending lucky streaks and rendering worthless everything it touches. Afar encourages trade and is considered the protector of all merchants. Shopkeeps and merchants pray to him for protection, gamblers pray to him for luck, the poor pray to him to get rich, and the rich pray to him to get richer. Afar is a popular deity amongst all classes and in all nations of mankind.
Afar’s parentage is unknown, but it is generally agreed that he arrived, resplendent atop his black tiger mount, from remote shores. Sources disagree on whether the god’s far-off homeland is located to the east, west, or south. An opportunistic deity, Afar is said to have arrived on the shores on Tellum after humanity’s struggle against the Old Gods had already been won, to usher in a new era of prosperity.
Afar teaches cleverness, opportunism, showiness, and, above all, self-preservation. As the patron of merchants and traders, the god encourages his followers to always come out on top, to land on their feet, and to save their own skin before worrying about others. While some would define his dogma as ignoble, his followers maintain that it is simply practical. Afar’s followers are shrewd businessmen and cocky gamblers and smooth-talkers who always seem to have luck shining upon them. The god frowns upon stupidity, the easily duped, and those who lack coolness and composure in the face of adversity or hardships (being poor is not a sin in the church of Afar, but seeming poor is). If Afar’s followers must make a dishonest profit, the god vastly prefers cunning in business to common thievery.
Clergy and Temples
Although Afar counts many worshipers amongst mankind, his clergy is not particularly abundant outside of large cities and other important trade centers. In these places, temples of Afar are generally present, and these temples are run by communities of his clerics happy to share in the wealth of offerings left by his faithful. In addition to selling all manner of lucky trinkets, temples of Afar offer various financial services, such as money changing and money lending. Afar’s clerics therefore work as bankers and money changers, but may also tour game halls, markets, and bazaars spreading their god’s blessing of luck and prosperity and offering lucky charms or blessings for a price. Priests of Afar tend to dress in a style that is simple yet lavish, for example a simple copper-colored tunic made of the finest imported fabrics and a small, golden holy symbol set with dazzling diamonds and rubies. It is not uncommon for priests of Afar to travel with armed guards.
Temples of Afar are generally not very large, but they are always richly decorated, giving the impression of walking into a king’s jewelry box stuffed to overflowing with glittering treasures. As terrestrial representations of richness and prosperity, Afar’s temples do not disappoint; golden, gem-encrusted idols of the god abound, rich tapestries hang from the walls, and fine carpets unfurl over multi-colored marble floors. Storerooms are heavily guarded but left visible via small openings or screens so that the faithful may have a vision of the abundance that awaits those who walk with Afar.
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