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Temples of foreign religions found in Specularumby Giampaolo Agosta
Shrine of Minroth
The Minrothist clergy maintains a single shrine in the Trader's Corridor, outside the city walls. The shrine is usually quite busy during the good season, when Minrothad mariners and merchants are common in Specularum. During winter, though, the shrine is mostly empty, since resident Minrothaddans are few -- basically only the Embassy staff.
Due to the strictures of the Minrothist cult, only a single priest mans the shrine, and the priests change almost yearly. Since communications with Minrothad are blocked during the winter season, the priest must survive on preserved food only, except for a monthly shipping of fresh food and water via teleportation spells.
The need to teleport some food to the shrine's cellar is the reason why the shrine was built outside the city walls, since Specularum, like most cities in the Known World is screened against incoming teleportation magics. The shrine itself is a very old building, dating before the Thyatian invasion.
The current priest, Alon Carver (C3, L), has been in the city only since last Ambyrmont. He speaks only patois and some Thyatian, and is quite reclusive. He is assisted by a pair of laymen who, not being constrained to eat and drink only foods and drinks produced in Minrothad, live outside the shrine, in the Foreign Quarter.
The second Minrothaddan temple in Specularum is a much newer and larger structure than the Minrothist shrine. A team of Augrist workaholic dwarves built this octagonal, three story building in a single week -- so they could worship at the new temple during the next off-work afternoon.
The priests continue the work, always adding new gargoyles, bell towers, statues of Wildeye Auger or of the Twelve Watchers, or sculpting the stone surface of the temple with religious symbols, representations of holy parables from the life of Auger and other decorations.
Thus, the Augrist temple has a permanent work-in-progress look. The interior of the temple is dominated by the vast Hall of the Twelve Watchers on the first floor. This large room is accessed through two side stairways from the foyer on ground level. The second floor is still empty, but the two lower floors are full of small rooms, workshops, monastic cells, kitchens, and so on, with almost no corridors -- each room opens directly on the adjacent rooms (the Augrist priests concentrate so much on their tasks that they don't notice others passing through their rooms anyway). It is also said that extensive underground works exist under the temple, perhaps even connecting with the sewer system below the northern wards of the city.
The current Elder of the temple, Mason Auger (Dwarf Cleric 7), is a direct descendant of Auger's first cousin. Not surprisingly, he holds a great reverence for the Stonemason (one of the Twelve Watchers). Six other dwarf and human Clerics help him. The clergy also hire out as architects and sculptors, which allows them to support the temple expenses.
The Augrist clergy is usually quite busy with its construction projects, but on their off-work afternoon, they become eager proselytisers, so that long time residents of the neighbourhood avoid the streets around the temple block during the Augrist holiday.
Shrine of the Eternal Truth
The Shrine of the Eternal Truth is a single story whitewashed building with a flat roof. A gilded dome was part of the original project, but funds ran short and the dome was never completed. A slender tower rises in the garden a few yards from the main building.
A small group of scholars and preachers lives on the temple ground. These four departed from Ylaruam as learned sages and profound thinkers, but aging and the lack of interaction with other scholars in the last twenty years have turned them into four bickering old coots, who spend half their time dozing in sunny corners of the garden, and the rest arguing among themselves over not-so-profound issues (like who should cook meal or wash dishes). Thus, it is not surprising that the Eternal Truth is not gaining much ground in the Grand Duchy.
The four scholars are Ahmed ibn Sabir (C3, L), Yousef ibn Hamid min Sulba (C4, L), Nasir ben Said (MU 3, L) and Waleed ibn Djbril al Jaboori (Rake 2, L).
Church of Thyatis
While most Thyatians in Karameikos follow the teachings of the Church of Karameikos, the Church of Thyatis still maintains a patriarchal see in Specularum, both for political reasons and to provide services to the Thyatian nationals travelling or living abroad -- as well as to try to bring the Thyatians of Karameikos back to the fold.
The Church of Thyatis in Specularum is located in the Church District. The building, a massive rectangular temple consisting of a single wide, open space dominated by the statues of the six primary Immortals, Ixion, Vanya, Valerias, Tarastia, Protius and Asterius. The six bronze statues as masterworks of Thyatian sculpture, representing the Immortals with powerful, dynamic figures 10' tall.
The clergy is headed by Patriarch Domitius Messalla (C9, L), a priest of Tarastia. A dozen of lesser priests of various Immortals help the Patriarch with clerical tasks, diplomatic work, and religious rituals. The church does not include residence areas for the clergy, and most priests live (with their families) in rented houses in the Church District -- though a few lesser priests prefer the less expensive South End.
Church of Darokin
The so-called Church of Darokin is actually a multi-confessional hall funded by the five largest Lawful Darokinian sects. It consists of a large rectangular hall that gives access to a six smaller chapels on each of the longer sides. Five chapels are reserved for the funding sects, while the other chapels are open to all Darokinian cults (except those openly Entropic). Priests or other representatives of each cult can rent these chapels for a cheap fare (which helps cover maintenance expenses as well as the upkeep of the resident staff).
The Church of Darokin is appropriately located in the market section of the Foreign Quarter, right on the North Road.
The resident priests are a mixed lot, since they come from five different cults. Each cult sends one to three priests, for a current total of 11 priests. A half dozen of other Darokinian priests regularly uses the building on a rental base as well.