Thursday, September 7, 2017

Campaign Design - The Lords of Heaven: Hœnir

Hœnir (Viswa-Nîn)

The Machine Who Makes; The Iron Lord; Celestial Lord of Constructs, Engineers, and Ironborn

Alignment: Lawful Neutral.
Domains: Armor, Artifice, Constructs, Creation, Fabrication, MechanusTime.
Summon Monster: Hœnir's clerics and favored souls can summon axiomatic and ísern-souled creatures using summon monster spells.
Symbol: Three interlocked gears.
Favored Weapon: "The tinkerer's hand" (light hammer).

Hœnir's origins are lost in legend. The celestial lord is a great machine animated by clockwork gears and magical power, so some maintain that Hœnir was crafted - crafted in Wünd's celestial forgers and assembled by means of Füllar's ingenuity. Others dismiss such notions as ludicrous, and instead say that Hœnir is the physical manifestation of the clockwork workings of the universe itself, and predates the existence of all other beings. Those who hold this position claim that Hœnir is the Great Maker who crafted everyone and everything else that exists, or ever existed. On this subject, as he is on all other subjects, Hœnir is silent, for the Iron Lord does not speak.

In tales, Hœnir appears as an iron golem shaped from iron and bronze, with gouts of steam constantly issuing forth from his joints. As with all things about him, Hœnir's exact nature is shrouded in mystery. Some say that he was once a being made from flesh who slowly replaced himself with mechanical parts - citing Heim's silver hands and eyes and Tiwas' golden arm as an example of how this process could have begun. Other quarters hold that Hœnir was always a steam and clockwork creation, and that he has never been a creature of flesh and blood. Still others maintain that beneath Hœnir's metal exterior beats a fragile heart made of muscle and blood. The one thing that all agree on is that not even Woda knows the truth. What is known is that Hœnir is not only a machine himself, he is the creator of new machines, and delights in building new machines, and is constantly fabricating new constructs, new steamwork devices, and new clockwork gadgets in his celestial workshop. Though he does not speak, Hœnir makes, tirelessly crafting an endless stream of creations driven by an enigmatic agenda that none but he knows.

There are few tales that tell what Hœnir did during the War in Heaven. Some say he did not participate directly in the fighting, instead crafting weapons and war machines to aid the Celestial Lords in their struggle, while other stories imply that the Divine Machine fought alongside the Celestial warriors against their demonic foes. The stories all agree that even though Heim's silver hands and eyes and Tiwas' golden arm cam from Wünd's forges, it was Hœnir's skill and ingenuity that made them possible. Many other stories describe mighty engines of divine destruction crafted by his hands that were thrown against the demonic hordes. It is accepted as a matter of faith that the great golem that looms inert over the fortress city of Cær Alrys is Hœnir's creation.

Hœnir is not a particularly popular deity, but his followers are usually ardent in their devotion. He is loved by engineers and craftsmen, finding great favor among gnomes and dwarves. He is regarded as the patron lord of the ironborn, who regard his existence as a harbinger of the inevitability of their own creation. Hœnir's temples often resemble workshops more than places of worship, as his followers are called upon to show their devotion by their own creative industry.

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