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The Oracle of the Gods, Lady of Fortune, Mistress of Forbidden Pleasures, Temptress of the Pure, Divine Harlot. Larissa has been called all these things and more. Originally depicted as a demure, young virgin, Larissa used Her ability to see into the future during the God War with deadly accuracy. Her powers were crucial in the defeat of the Other and in foretelling the eventual triumph of humanity over the elorii.

Afterwards, She became obsessed with the protection of Her children and searched further and further into the future, cataloguing every pitfall or catastrophe that could or would befall humanity. At one point however, She parted the furthest veil and saw what was not meant to be seen, even by a God. Driven mad by the vision, Larissa dove headlong into an orgy of hedonistic pleasures, each indulgence greater than the last; anything to burn the image of what was to come from Her mind.

Philosophers wonder if the decadence which eventually spelled the doom of the Imperium was caused by the Divine Seer’s fall into madness or whether the events on the mortal plane was mirrored above in the heavens.

Regardless, this chaotic divergence in Her personality and powers caused a rift in Her followers, one that is slowly reaching a boiling point, which will one day explode into a bloody schism.

As with the other gods of the Pantheon, Larissa is known to have darker aspects than the Maiden of Joyous Indulgence. She is also known as the Lady of Sins, the Delightful Torturer and the Giver of Exquisite Agony.

Holy Symbol: A lucky coin is Larissa's symbol, A golden coin suspended from a fine silver chain among nobles and the Mother church but any coin among those less fortification. Its considered bad luck to spend a coin that has been used to pray to Larissa.

Position within the Pantheon: Oracle of the Gods, Wife of Cadic, Mother of Sarish, Daughter of Illiir and Saluwe’.

Favored Weapon: Shortsword, “Larissa’s Kiss”

Animal: Colorful serpents.

Color: Scarlet

Appearance: Larissa usually appears as a young woman of unearthly beauty. Her every move is hypnotic, while her very scent is intoxicating.



Sphere of Influence

The priesthood of Larissa is widespread and welcomed, in one form or another, in just about every corner of the Known Lands. Savona, the capital of the Coryani province of Cafela, remains the seat of power for worshippers of the Mistress of Forbidden Pleasures. Thousands flock to its festooned streets during holy celebrations that are marked with endless hours of pleasure and merriment.



Temple

Temples to Larissa are built in the shape of huge ziggurats topped with a large sacrificial brazier in which holy incense is burned eternally. At the bottom level of these immense structures, private rooms exist so that those who wish to commune with the Goddess may do so privately, personally guided by a cleric of the Divine Harlot.

Shrines to Larissa’s aspect as the Lady of Fortune are also a common sight, especially in gambling halls. They can be found in the shape of fountains in most major cities where those wishing for their bad luck to turn offer a few coins in supplication.


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Role of the Priest

To outsiders, the priesthood of Larissa is a unified entity made up of hedonists and sensates that can peer through the veil of time and glimpse future events. In reality, the Larissan priesthood is but a hair away from total schism leading to a religious holy war the likes of which has not seen in ages.

The original duties ascribed to Larissa dealt with peering into the future, thus aiding leaders in making decisions or averting disaster with the foreknowledge of what was to come. The Oracular sect still believes that this should be their one and only duty, all else being an unwanted distraction. They point to the fact that it was towards the end of the Imperium that Larissa sank into Her madness.

Before that time, She was depicted as a shy and demure young woman; selflessly coming to the aide of Her family and letting nothing come before Her sacred obligation.
The Oracles maintain that by indulging in such hedonistic practices, the sensate priests are merely perpetuating Larissa’s downward spiral into utter insanity.

The Sensates argue that their sect is the one truly following the edicts of their Goddess by indulging in every experience and living life to its fullest as She commands. They point to the fact that they are equally able to see future events as the Oracles do. If they had strayed from the divine path, Larissa would have stripped them of that power.

While the hedonists do not shirk their duty of advising those in power of coming events, they believe it is their sacred trust to the common man to make their lives a bit brighter and happier. Throw off the shackles of polite society, dare to speak ones’ mind without fear of recrimination, indulge in every desire, they teach. One need not wait until death to pass into the Paradise of the Gods, when it can be enjoyed now.


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