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Rathanos

by Marco Dalmonte

(Ra)
Patron of Nithia, Lord of Fire

Level, Alignment, Sphere: 28th (Eternal), CN, Energy
Symbol: a flaming brand
Portfolio: fire, fire creatures, energy, power, male supremacy
Worshipped in: Davania (Meghales Amosses), Great Waste, Isle of Dawn (Ekto, Thothia, Trikelios), Alatian Islands, Hollow World (Nithia), Known World (Ierendi), Skothar (Esterhold, Jen, Minaea)
Appearance: a 7' tall humanoid made of blazing fire, without any distinctive features
History: Rathanos was a wizard of the ancient Oltec civilisation, totally obsessed by the power of fire and the elemental plane associated with it. With the passing of years he became an unchallenged master of fire magic until he discovered the path to immortality and finally around XXV century BC ascended to the Sphere of Energy under the patronage of Ixion.
After becoming immortal he spread his teachings to all of the Jennite tribes living in Skothar, descendants of the Oltecs whom Rathanos belonged to in his mortal life. At the same time he took a particular interest in the ascension of the Nithian people, becoming one of the most important deities in their pantheon and their foremost patron together with Pflarr. During the centuries he managed to create a strong movement for male supremacy inside the Jennite culture and this put the matriarchal tradition of the Jennites in danger. This friction escalated in an open civil war that opposed the female followers of Tarastia to the male worshippers of Rathanos, and the strife caused the collapse of the Jennite civilisation, which reverted to Stone Age. This started the fire of misogynist hatred inside Rathanos's soul.
Rathanos turned then his attention wholly on Nithia, but here Thanatos's schemes made the Nithians turn to the wrong side and caused Rathanos to lose many of his followers to the rival Corona (the Nithian identity of Zugzul), who brought the Magian Fire Worshippers on his side. Rathanos chose to concentrate his blessings and protection only on the most faithful of his followers and managed to preserve Thothia (the Nithian colony on the Isle of Dawn) from the Entropic influence of Thanatos and his allies, saving it from the immortals' cleansing and annihilation of the empire. Afterwards he joined Pflarr, Ixion and Valerias in recreating the Nithian Empire in a preserved place, and after choosing the most traditional communities among those spared they transplanted them in the Hollow World. Here the Nithians thrived once more and they prospered under the guidance of the pharaohs loyal to the ancient immortals.
Personality: Rathanos is obsessed with power and his misogynist view of the universe, which leads him to systematically oppose every female immortal just for the fact of being female (the same attitude is also present in many of his clerics). Rathanos's only interest is the complete transmutation of all matter into energy, and in fire energy in particular. He is constantly searching for a spell that will allow his followers to turn into beings of pure energy, making them unbreakable and immortal. However up to now his researches have not produced the ultimate spell, and for this reason he continues to push his followers along this path, promising them that only this way they will achieve true immortality. If his plan will ever come to pass, he will create a nation of beings that will be born as mortals and can learn as fast as only mortals can do, but later will become eternal beings serving the cause of Energy.
Because of his character and goal he is in perpetual contrast with many female immortals (notably Tarastia) and with Zugzul, patron of fire giants and self-appointed Master of Fire way before Rathanos rose among the immortal ranks.
Patron: Ixion
Allies: Pflarr, Elemaster of Fire
Enemies: Zugzul, Stodos, Tarastia, Diulanna, Vanya and all female Immortals that challenge male supremacy in the universe
Classic D&D Stats:
Followers' alignment: Neutral or Chaotic
Favoured weapons: torch (allowed all bludgeoning weapons)
Clerics' skills & powers: clerics can cast Resist Fire and Produce Fire once per day for free (see spells with same name), +5% bonus to researching spells based on fire, bonus "Firebuilding" general skill
Avengers' Skills & powers: permanent "Resist Fire" power (see clerical spell with same name) after sacrificing 1 point of Constitution in a ritual dedicated to Rathanos, +1 bonus vs ST vs Fire
D&D 3E Stats:
Domains: Energy, Chaos, Fire, Magic, Strength
Preferred weapon: club (any)
Sources: HWR2, HW, WotI, DotE, M5