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(acknowledged by the Church)
Orbis – The World (The Omnipresent)
Orbis is the omnipresent deity of all Animas. In virtue of Their manifoldness, there is only little the deliverances can agree upon. Highly recurrent features are: stone, air/wind, trees/branches/natural elements, water/tears, fire. Often, the illustrations depict a large being, its body consisting of a variety of these components.
The church of Burdin, by way of example, is home to a portrayal of Orbis which hails Them as a being half upright, half walking on all fours with a mane of fire, legs of stone and a body of tree bark, crying rivers and blowing winds through large nostrils.
In a monastery near Garia, however, Orbis is shown in a stained-glass window as a giant tree, a southerly wind blowing through its branches. Its roots reach deep into the stony soil and a river washes around the trunk, while fire licks at its banks.
Tradition of the Council holds that earth, heaven and sea emerged around Orbis. They shaped trees, riverbanks, mountains, and valleys. According to the Scriptures, They created two more deities, Ovium and Furor, out of loneliness to share the joy of Their creation.
The world was growing and thriving under the care of the three deities, until Orbis said one day: “There is still more missing on this Earth. I have you, my children, but oh, the world has no one. Thus, I assign you with the task to create life. I shall withdraw back into myself. Go forth and do what you deem right. Good or bad – I shall watch over your doings and judge them after.”
Ovium and Furor were honoured that Orbis would put Their trust in them and they both wanted to prove they were worthy of it. They worked for a long time on their own creations and eventually came together again to show off their accomplishments.
From here on out, there are two versions of the Scriptures found in churches and cloisters around Tiorlanth.
The Herbi Scriptures claim that Furor instantly set about creating gruesome beings. For a long time, he had been waiting to try his hand at them. He forged fangs and tusks, wild rolling eyes and shaggy, matted fur.
Ovium, who was not happy about that but conceded the same rights to them both, began her creation of docile beings with soft fur and pelt. Small teeth which were excellent for eating plants. She did not wish for blood to stain the lush grass and indulgent soil which, of course, could happen with sharp teeth.
When the two deities finally put their achievements side by side, Furor burst out laughing. “What are these measly critters you have fabricated there? They look ridiculous!”
Deeply mortified, Ovium huffed with anger and allowed herself to let her composure slip. “Look who is talking. Your creatures are good for nothing! What are they supposed to even eat with such dreadful teeth?”
Furor raged upon hearing those words. “Watch it, I will show you!” And so, he gave his beings the thirst for blood to take with them.
Soon, Furor’s predators began devouring Ovium’s plant eaters one after the other. She cried bitter tears over each and every loss, yet instead of giving up, she continued to put even more diligent and persistent labour in her gentle beings. She worked at such a speed that, at last, her creations outnumbered Furor’s by far.
He panted with rage when he realized this. “Just you wait! I will show you how much better my trusty creatures are!” he said and likewise proceeded with his doings…
It is said in the Carni Scriptures that Furor, eager and full of zest for action, began breathing life into his creations. He put a tremendous amount of care into the choices of fur and anatomy of every single being. Which was why he needed more time than Ovium.
She, too, was at it with a will and had ever so many ideas that she would often finish hastily and in a rush, never to hark back to it again. After a while, the two deities met again to compare their achievements.
Before long, Furor had presented his work and Ovium gave a bleating laugh. “What? Is that all you have brought about in all this time? Well, then we know already who will win praise of Orbis in the end. And what is this? None of them even have teeth! Do you want them to feed on mud, or would you rather they starve to death right away?”
Furor grumbled quietly. It had been difficult for him to shape the teeth; they were stubborn to become neat and smooth the way he wanted them to be. Ashamed, he looked down at the beautiful world Orbis had created.
Meanwhile, Ovium laughed even louder. “There, take a good look! All these creatures you see down there are my doing! And they even help to prevent the greenery from getting out of hand. Oh, Orbis will be delighted. You may as well give up now, my friend.”
With that, they went their separate ways once more and Ovium immediately returned to fabricate new beings. She did not even notice that she had become repetitive. Furor was enraged with Ovium and struggled to not take it out on his creations. So he decided to go take a seat at the edge of the world to admire it in all its beauty. And after a while, he noticed something terrible!
Ovium’s creatures gorged deep swathes into the greenery of the world. There were so many of them already that nature could not keep up growing back in time.
Furor had enough now. He could endure humiliation, but to watch Orbis’ labour of love get destroyed just like that had him in an uproar. Fuelled by fury, he took his creatures and shaped long, pointy teeth. Fangs and tusks now filled the jaws of his beings.
Before he poured the last component into them, Furor looked back on the world through which Ovium’s beasts mowed their paths. Witnessing that, he accepted once and for all that his creatures were necessary, and so he infused them with the appetite for meat and blood, then turned them loose.
Immediately, Ovium leapt at him and wailed miserably. “What have you done? Look! They are eating them! They are eating my darlings!” And Furor looked.
It was painful to watch dark blood soak into the earth which once held Orbis’ verdure. “I see it, my friend. It was necessary.”
But Ovium simply huffed in anger. “Just you wait! You will never form enough of your predators to kill all my plant eaters! You will see!” Ovium ran away to return back to work and did not hear Furor’s answer while he, too, went to carefully put together new creatures.
“That was never and will never be my desire, old friend.”
Both Scriptures talk about the two deities parting ways in disagreement and continuing to work on their creations for Orbis down to the present day. It is said that their feverish pursuit of improvement eventually led them to creating the Animas.
Orbis, however, is believed to slumber in a giant tree, which is guarded by the snake Invidia.
The Deities of the Seasons
Agricola – the Grower (god of the season of Ijósam) (brown hare)
Protection against the spoilage of crops. Support of its growth.
Agricola had always been one for pranks and shenanigans and he would get bored very quickly. His best friend, the sweet-tempered sheep, often became the victim of his practical jokes, but at times Agricola would lose interest because it was just too easy to fool the sheep. There had to be something he could fool many with, all at the same time. That would be fun! So he asked his friend: “Sheep, say, what is it that you and your flock love the most?”
A little sleepily, because he had just been out to grass in the pasture, the sheep answered: “The nice green grass in the pasture, I think.”
That was not enough of an answer for Agricola yet. So he asked: “And what is it you do not like at all?”
The sheep tilted his head and looked thoughtfully down onto the ground, his eyes half closed. “The brown bulrushes at the lakeshore. They are so very stringy and dry.”
Feeling restless, Agricola thumped his strong foot. “That is it? You are all so awfully gluttonous!”
But the sheep simply closed his eyes for a nap, unaffected. There, Agricola had an idea! What if the entire pasture would be filled with brown bulrushes? He ran at a hurried pace to the lake and plucked a few bulrushes to use its seeds.
But when he tried to grow them on the pasture, he came to realise that they would not sprout in this soil. Furious, he leapt up into the air. He jumped and dashed about until he calmed down some again. “If the bulrushes will not grow here, then I must plant something that looks just like it instead! But plants like that do not exist. Think, Agricola, think!” he said to himself and thumped his foot three times. Then he had an idea. “Oh, this is going to be good! This is going to be so good! What if I manage to not only fool the entire flock of sheep but Ovium on top of that? Ha!”
So he dashed, looking for Ovium. She was just in the act of creating new fish in the lakes and was deeply immersed in her task. “Ovium! Help! Ovium!” Agricola shouted and drenched his voice with as much agitation as he could muster.
She turned towards him and smiled benevolently. “Calm down, my child. What do you have on your mind?”
Agricola jumped back and forth, flustered. “The sheep, Ovium! The sheep! They are so very hungry! The grass out in the pasture is not enough to feed them anymore. They are so weak, they just lie down or stand about. They need something else!”
Ovium nodded worriedly. “Let me see.” And so she followed Agricola to the pasture and, sure enough, she caught sight of the sheep simply lying down or standing about.
Agricola had known that they wouldn’t move much because they were sated and idle due to having feasted on the grass. Ovium, however, only saw what he had told her. “See? That is what I was talking about! You must act now! They need something new to eat! Perhaps you could let bulrushes grow here? They do love them so.”
Ovium shook her head. “Bulrushes will not grow here, Agricola.”
That, too, he had known already, but now he had Ovium on the right track. “Could you not create something that would look the same and taste similar?”
Ovium thought about that long and hard and Agricola feared that the sheep would get up moving again. “Strictly speaking, I do not create plants. Orbis themselves created the flora of the world and merely tasked us with populating it.”
“Yes, yes – “, Agricola began and raised a paw, “but Orbis is asleep, and just think about it, wouldn’t They be incredibly pleased to see how you saved these poor sheep here.” Agricola knew Ovium and Furor to be at strife and also that this circumstance would benefit him.
It took another while before Ovium answered, yet he could already tell by the spark in her eyes that he had won. “You are right. Surely Orbis would be disappointed if I didn’t help them.”
And so, Ovium began to form a new plant out of bulrush fibres and nut seeds. Once she was done, she showed Agricola her creation. The plant was lighter in colour than a bulrush and did indeed have a sort of ear on top, yet it divided into small, separate grains. That would not bother him, though, it would suffice for the sheep.
Ovium sowed the new crop on a part of the pasture and wanted to move as Agricola called her back. “I am so thankful, great Ovium, but I am not sure this will be enough. It may suffice for the sheep, yet I and my 200 children would like to eat it as well. Could you not replant the entire pasture with it?”
And as indulgent as Ovium was, she did him that favour and Agricola praised her and thanked her gushingly.
When the sheep awoke, Ovium was gone again already. Shocked, they looked out onto their beautiful pasture where, instead of lush green, there was sun yellow, high crop. They bleated in outrage and shuffled to and fro, because they did not know what they were supposed to do.
Agricola hunkered down behind a bush and laughed, slapping his knees. What a hoot!
But then, some of the sheep tried the new and strange plant. Chewed on it extensively, took another bite and another, and the previously outraged bleating turned into delightful munching. Agricola had to watch how one sheep after the other began to taste the new crop and continue to eat it happily.
He jumped out of the bush and stopped in front of the flock, thumping his foot angrily. “What are you doing? I did all this because I thought you would not like it at all!”
His friend, the sheep, turned towards him. “This is scrumptious! Not as dry and stringy as the bulrushes, you should try it!”
Agricola ripped out a stem of the plant. “That is impossible!” he grouched and took a bite. But the sheep were right. It was delicious!
“Make more of it!” the sheep exclaimed and cheered.
And that was how it came that Agricola became a grower. Many times more he convinced Ovium through his cunning to create more plants, like lettuce, carrots, oat, and hops.
Deviation in the Herbi-Scriptures: according to these texts, Ovium knew exactly that Agricola was trying to fool the sheep, and that is why she purposefully created a plant which they would enjoy.
Visdare – the Sustainer (god of the season of Arnsat) (red deer)
Bringer of vitality and the change of seasons
Ovium – who was tired of Furor claiming that the reason for him creating his carnivores were her herbivores devouring all of Orbis’s greenery – created the god of seasons called Visdare. A huge, muscular red deer whose antlers fall off during the first moon of Vrüelinc, only for them to then grow anew throughout the year by extracting life out of leaves, blossoms, and grasses.
By the first moon of Arnsat it is fully grown again and has destroyed all the greenery. The antlers protect the life they have taken during the entirety Winjaik.
By dropping his antlers at the first moon of Vrüelinc again, he gives life back to the flora and bestows strength upon it for the year ahead.
Censere – the Thoughtful Judge (god of the season of Winjaik) (Badger)