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Bellum

"Will you win?" "Yes." "But at what cost?" "Only the first question's answer matters."

As a patron saint of strategic conflict, the lord of war, and the god of tactics--both on and off the battlefield--Bellum occupies the role of creating calm, cool plans to guide those who follow him towards victory. This winning may come at a steep price.

HomageEdit

Who Homage paid to him comes from exacting plans that produce results. While normally reserved for acts of war, any games of forethought and strategy offer a secondary form of worship. Most main disciples of this god are chieftains, lieutenants, warlords and merchant-lords who have goals in mind and a deep-seated determination to complete them.

HowEdit

The method of paying homage is as follows: Over the image of the area where the strategy will be carried out (e.g., a map of the battlefield, the board of a game) the would-be tactician traces an "X" with his dominant hand, while saying the word "imperátória". The word directs the god, the "X" denotes the locale. The effect will not be immediate, and will not work amidst a plan already being engaged, but soon thereafter a bolt of inexplicable divine inspiration will occur to the requester, who will be assisted in finding a more clear and obvious answer to attaining victory.

BoonEdit

Paying homage to Bellum will allow the tactician in prayer to think clearly of plans for battle with less regard for base instinct and human emotion. This clarity of thought is further made into a benefit by receiving advice given directly from worship to Bellum. Being an observer of battles beyond counting, his advice is near-absolute save the possible interference by other gods throwing foibles at the whims in fate, though he purposefully disguises it amongst the worshippers own thoughts. In this way, Bellum's full affect cannot be separated and judged for value.

GuidanceEdit

It is important to notice the necessity for existing skill for the mortal seeking Bellum's counsel. There is a limit to what Bellum can do and predict, and it always comes as an addition to the abilities of the folk who receive it, not as a replacement for the judgement they have.

It comes as a 'divine inspiration' and thus the act cannot be explained or duplicated outside of the god's manifested will, though the experience gained from exacting the devised plan will increase the ability of the would-be winning tactician.

CostEdit

There is a price to be paid, an exchange of sorts. Bellum receives aether from those who worship enacting sound plans of battle. That strategy combined with mortal effort releases the energy needed by the god, which in turn necessitates conflict. As such, the goal of Bellum is not peace. Instead, it is preparation for the next battle to come. A decision maker who carries out their charged mission with Bellum's advice achieves greater clarity with which to heed to flow of battle. However, it comes at the price of morality--in time, the commander (pending on his state of will) may come to put less value on loss of life, or the requests of his underlings, making bolder sacrifices for larger gains to amass the most complete victory. Training will become more grueling, the marches will grow longer, the battles more fierce, and the death toll creeps higher. A pure convert acting on a sheer tactical level of Bellum's will is at a loss to the mortal coil, and will be a war monger, however successful.

Current WorshipEdit

Nevertheless, leaders from countless armies and tribes continue to pay homage as they attempt to balance the clairvoyance in predicting what's to come with the mortal cost it may come at. They know the price they'll pay if they become over-reliant on Bellum's stratagem, and they are aware of how admitting to worship may affect the morale of those under their command.

Bellum experiences no shortage of request for aid despite the stigma, and many well-planned, costly periods of war are waged in his name.

GamesEdit

A less grand and damning method of worship serves as a kind of constant surplus source of minor aether collection, coming from Bellum's influence in games of strategy such as {chess, checkers, mah jhong, shogi, othello, monopoly and hungry hungry hippos.} They offer, in addition, a training ground for Bellum to test the will of current mortal life and new tactics and their response.

A player may, to the chagrin of his opponent, call on a favorable decision with the insight granted in small doses by Bellum's tactical expertise. The god is running a racket of knowledge that propagates itself, as the player on the receiving end may offer an act of homage as well to answer for Bellum's last advice being used against them.

The negative trade-off for those who play games seeking Bellum's advice is that no one will want to play with you because you are a god-blessed cheater!