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    Profile photo of disenchanter

    The female players in my group are interested in the Fire rune(especially its Sun association), for their future characters. However, I cannot find a suitable god to recommend them. We are planning a Sartar-based game, but are open to suggestions of foreign gods and cultures.

    What the girls are looking for seems to me like a mix between Elmal, Vinga and Yelmalio(from what little I know of their cults) – loyal, steadfast, suffering, bright, gentle(e.g. Elmal gently warming the earth for Esrola), proud, brave, wandering, generous, free. Visually, they would love to be a less wealthy version of the woman on the RQ6 cover, but also brighter – with pike and shield of gleaming gold(or bronze if gold is unavailable)

    Female fire gods in general seem to be rare, and associations with the sun seem to be unheard of for women in the cultures I am familiar with. Mahome and Gustbarn are minor and peaceful cults, and Redalda is too focused on horses.

    Is there anything existing that’s close to what they describe?
    Or, if we’ll have to create it from scratch, what is the best way to do it? And which pantheon would be the best match, or the best source for mythical connections and ideas?

    An interesting idea one of them suggested is that while they agree with the rest of the group on opposing the Empire as part of the themes of the campaign, that doesn’t mean they can’t follow someone from the Lunar pantheon. Is that ok? Would one be able to both follow a member of the pantheon(or even the Goddess herself) but oppose members of the cult and even the Empire itself?

    Thanks in advance.

    Profile photo of Keith Nellist
    Keith Nellist

    The goddess who immediately springs to mind is Yelorna the Star Maiden. Opposed to the Lunar Empire on metallurgical grounds (Rivalry over silver).

    There are precedents for Lunar worshippers opposing the Lunar Empire. Once you realise that the Empire is made up of more warring factions, feuding clans, enemy cults, hated nations and rival families than the whole of Sartar then you can easily be a Lunar who opposes at least some part of the Empire.

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    Jeff Richard

    In Ralios, there is a tradition of sun horse goddesses and Galana is often described as a sun goddess.

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    Simon Phipp

    Yelorna seems the best bet.

    Caladra is also a female Fire goddess, in Caladraland in the Holy Country.

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    Peter Metcalfe

    There is also Vijaya, the Sun Goddess of Vormain.

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    Harald Smith
    There is also Vijaya

    She won’t particularly work for a Sartar-based game though given the very insular nature of Vormain (at best might see pirates from there, but even then very rare).

    However, given that Yelmalio was husband to Ernalda, and Elmal to Esrola, there’s certainly the possibility to discover in Sartar some long lost/forgotten female solar/fire figure (perhaps actually Galana as Jeff suggests). Doubtless opposed by the Yelmalion leaders of Vanntar and Alda-chur, maybe by Grazelanders as well.

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    Martin Hawley

    Elmal’s Daughters

    During the darkness, Orlanth took the warriors to fight the forces of chaos. He instructed Elmal to stay behind and commanded him to guard the stead and the lands of the Tula. Orlanth gave the shield Arran to Elmal and then he turned to embrace Ernalda. As he left, Orlanth told her to watch Elmal and ensure he guarded well, for although Vinga could fight, not all the Goddesses could defend themselves. Elmal would be the only defence against any foes.
    Ernalda set Elmal to guard the stead, while she and her sisters set about their chores. Elmal took his spear, named Sharp Point and Arran the Shield and stood guard at the doorway to the Stead. After some time he became cold and stepped inside. Here, Mahome tended the hearth fire and Elmal warmed himself. As he did so he noticed the beauty of Mahome for the first time, and she noticed how handsome he looked in the fine mail shirt and yellow britches. Mahome gave him griddle cakes and warm mead, and Elmal lay with her.
    When Ernalda returned from her tasks she could see that the doorway was unguarded, Elmal was no where to be seen. Ernalda was worried, for she feared the Predark demons had devoured Elmal. She approached the stead and looked inside, here she found Elmal and Mahome her daughter, each with a ruddy breathless look about their faces.
    “Why are you so red faced and breathless Elmal?” Asked Ernalda.
    “I have been fighting valiantly to protect the stead” gasped Elmal. He rubbed the crumbs of the griddle cakes from his mouth and the wiped the drops of mead from his chin.
    “Is this true Mahome?”
    “Yes, he is strong and brave, in fact he’s the strongest and bravest man in the whole Tula”. Mahome told the truth, because since Orlanth had taken the warriors away Elmal was the only true man in the whole Tula.
    “You are redder than normal too Mahome!” Questioned the doubting Ernalda.
    “I stoked the fire hotter than normal to scare the demons and to aid brave Elmal” . Mahome looked guilty and hid her face. “That is why I am ruddier than normal”.
    “Is this true Elmal?”
    “Yes Mahome fought well and I defeated the attackers of the stead” boasted Elmal.
    “Good” said Ernalda. “In that case you will guard the stable as well”.
    Elmal left the stead and went to defend the stable. Here he stood guard, yet as before his guard did not last, for he grew tired. So Elmal went inside to rest his weary limbs. Inside he saw fine Beseta, her gleaming body shone like the very sun itself, her long legs stretched out were oh so graceful and her beautiful golden hair cascaded from her head and down her shoulders. Beseta nuzzled Elmal and he lay with her.
    When Ernalda returned from her tasks she could see that the stable was unguarded, Elmal was no where to be seen. Ernalda was worried, for she feared the Predark demons had devoured Elmal. She approached the stable and looked inside, here she found Elmal and Beseta, each sweating.
    “Why are you sweating Elmal?” Asked Ernalda.
    “I have been fighting valiantly to protect the stable” gasped Elmal. He swept the straw off his body. “I fought so hard that the blood of our foes turned my britches red and so I am putting on a new pair” said Elmal as he replaced the yellow britches.
    “Is this true Beseta?” Ernalda asked her, but, Beseta said nothing and instead pawed the ground and tossed her head.
    “Good” said Ernalda. “In that case you will guard the Tula lands as well”.
    Elmal left the stable and went to guard the lands of Orlanth’s Tula. He patrolled well, for this time he was worried that Ernalda might notice if he did not do as instructed. Elmal went to the very edge of the Tula, right where the dark was the worse to check for foes. Here he saw Tara, washing her hair in a stream.
    As Elmal watched, Tara stood naked and dived in to the water. Elmal was aroused, he quickly removed the fine mail shirt and yellow britches, and dived into the waters. Tara was not shocked, or surprised, for she knew that Elmal had been watching her. The pair frolicked and splashed in the water, then they lay together on the bank.
    When Ernalda approached she could see Elmal, wet, lying on the bank. Ernalda was worried, for she feared the Predark demons had killed Elmal. Then she noticed him breathing so she stood over his sleeping body.
    “Why are you asleep Elmal?” Asked Ernalda.
    “I was not asleep, I was exhausted from fighting the foes that crept out of the Darkness to assault the Tula of your Husband!” asserted Elmal.
    “Then why are you wet?” quizzed Ernalda.
    “I had to fight, many times, once after I had fought I bent down to wash my face and another foe attacked me from behind and tried to drown me, but, I killed him too!” Lied Elmal.
    “Good” Said Ernalda. “You truly are the very best man in the whole Tula. When my husband returns I will tell him of all your brave defence and how you protected me and the other Goddesses from harm” , praised Ernalda.
    On the glorious return, As the gates of dawn were opened to allow Time and Future to be released, many children were born, like Voria the goddess of spring. Among the many children born as this time were these three. All three looked a lot like Elmal.

    In the stead, Mahome gave birth to a beautiful daughter and called her Tethin (Radiant flame of gold), Defender of the stead. She is The Daughter of Fire and symbolised by the red-breasted swan. In the stable, Beseta gave birth to a fine daugther and named her Tamara (Bright Horse). She is The Pony Girl and symbolised by a golden maned pony. At the edge of the Tula Ernalda found a girl-child and she called her Dalila (Maiden of Rocks and waters). She is The Golden Huntress. Dailia is the one who washes her golden hair in the streams and can lure Odaylans to their death with her voice. If they approach her with caution she can give then luck in hunting, just like her mother.

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    Scott Martin

    If they’re receptive to a Balazaring connection you can establish them as liberators of Firshala and let them (re)discover how that cult works as they go. Or give Firshala a slightly more amazonian sister who got lost a little closer to Dragon Pass.

    Please keep us posted.

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    Harald Smith
    Elmal’s Daughters

    Love it!
    And a good story to fit into any Sartarite clan that follows Elmal (and definitely one that the Yelmalions would frown upon!).

    Profile photo of Andrew Raphael
    Andrew Raphael

    What about Redalda?

    High Priestess of Redalda at Horsetown, Nallindia of the Enhyli is often mistaken for a Vingan warrior woman at first glance with her flowing red hair and skill at the spear.
    Profile photo of disenchanter

    Thanks for the replies everyone.

    Quote from Andrew Raphael on May 19, 2014, 10:33
    What about Redalda?

    I should have made this clear in my first post, but they ruled out Redalda for her extreme focus on horses.
    Yelorna has a similar problem, in that she seems to be very strongly associated with archery and unicorn riders, both things my players are not interested in for their characters.
    Generally star goddesses have the problem that they are star, not Sun related.

    I’m considering creating a minor warrior cult for them based on the kind of characters they described, and eventually developing a mythology around it. The unlikely combination of fire and wanderlust might makes me thing she might be a daughter of Elmal and Vinga – perhaps from when they both defended the stead during Darkness. Just like every other time, they argued a lot on how to raise her, but did a great job of it in the end. She inherited her father’s fire and loyalty, but her mother’s wanderlust and love of freedom. In the end, she even taught her parents some new things.
    Her cult are travelling mercenaries, adventurers and truth-seekers, with a somewhat stricter internal hierachy. They fight in a somewhat foreign, Fire Tribe influenced fashion, but as light, mobile hipasists instead of heavy, static hoplites. They always defer to Elmal and Vinga(and Orlanth) priests, within the limitations of their cult. E.g. an Elmalian priest cannot make them settle down, nor can a Vingan request they be more reckless. Strangely enough, they also defer to Yelmalio cultists – but as those are very likely to give them “unacceptable orders” against which they will rebel, usually nothing comes of it.

    I’m tempted to not give her all the associated runes – she does what she does because she respects her parents, but lacks their powerful magic. If a member of the cult wants those, they can also initiate in the parents’ cult with a special role. I’m not sure if that’s an appropriate approach. As I said, our group is very new to Glorantha.

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    Simon Phipp

    Yelornan Shield Maidens are foot-soldiers, the equivalent of hoplites. Most Yelornans do not ride unicorns and are quite happy with horses. Riding a unicorn has some restrictions – must be a maiden, for a start.

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    David Lloyd

    If you’re open to foreign goddesses, Furalor, the Teshnan goddess of fire and death. I’ve always pictured her a female Humakt.

    Profile photo of aumshantih

    Furalor, the goddess of the Funeral Pyre, is pretty awesome. Here’s a cult write-up I did for her many years back:

    Furalor, the Fifth Fiery Form
    The Cleansing Fire

    Runes: Death, Fate, Fire

    Furalor is the Goddess of Death. She is the Fifth Fiery Form, and the only Goddess amongst them. To her goes everything that disappears from the world, including the bodies of all humankind. Her funeral pyre liberates the Life-Flame from its mortal Fuel, allowing it to transmigrate from body to body.

    She exists between Fuel and Flame.

    Her mythology is somewhat mysterious. It is believed that she was once a member of Somash’s Celestial Court, before the sun fell from the sky. Some say she was the first mortal daughter of Calyz to die. Others say she was cursed by Zitro Argon to eat the unclean.

    Cult Members:
    Of all the Five Fiery Forms cults, Furalor has the least Life-Flames and thus also has less political and theological power amongst the Wheels of Governance. Almost all (85%) of Furalor’s follower are women, most of whom are the white garbed Widows of Woe.

    Night Caste members of the cult are usually responsible for the most unpleasant and traditionally unclean tasks of handling corpses and maintaining the cremation grounds. Morning Caste generally join the cult when they left widowed. Noon Caste members are fairly few, and their Flames are usually marked by the Goddess upon birth. The rare Evening Caste Furalori inhabit gloomy palaces and forbidden necropoli, and are shunned by all common folk.

    There is but one Zitr of Furalor, the peerless Maduraiya of Matkondu, reknowned for her presence and clarity of vision. There has not been a Avatara of Furalor upon the throne of Teshnos in great many centuries – and it is something that is long overdue.

    Names and Forms of Furalor
    Furalor Sa, The Funeral Pyre
    Furalor Calyz, The Death of Men
    The Spirit of Decay
    Furalor Solf, Forgotten Thoughts
    Misplaced Items
    Lost Causes
    Widows of Woe
    Endi Furalor Varo, Fire of Unending Judgement
    Great Furalor, The Flame of Fate

    Profile photo of Pentallion

    Babeester Gor and Maran Gor can be fun to play. We once had a trickster change a Maran Gor into a man and, well, she didn’t take it very well. Which made it all the funnier.

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