So Paxmar has been doing a roaring trade selling harvests and collectables – why have I never sold these on the broker before? I try to keep Paxmar totally self-sufficient and she’s probably my richest alt.
I started thinking about, well, what do I spend the money on? I mean, she doesn’t need armor, she doesn’t need spells – she barely uses food and drink. So in the end I started buying up missing bits from collections. I only bought items from collections she had already started and I stayed within her tier range. It seems silly to complete a level 50 collection on a level 30 toon. Also I strongly suspect I’ll be really hurting for ways to get experience at higher levels and then all the lovely collections that I could have used will be gone. But Paxmar had a fair share of low level collections that she wanted to complete and that was a pretty straight forward decision.
Meanwhile, Paxmar decided it was high time she found religion. It’s surprisingly difficult to find a set of Deity quests that do not involve killing! Here are her experiences so far.
Losing My Religion
When I was in Baubbleshire for Frostfell, my aunts made a fuss because I hadn’t committed myself to a god yet. “You aren’t getting any younger, you know,” they nagged. “Nice gods get snapped up fast, you really should stop putting it off.”
It started innocently enough but conversations about religion always seem to go wrong. At the family picnic at the Forest Ruins, Fidget asked me if I had any idea which god I might like to follow and a heated discussion broke out as to which god would be the best match for me. Auntie Mabel said as a pacifist I should obviously follow Quellious and Gertrude said as a druid I could only even consider Tunare and then Auntie Mabel referred to Tunare as “that witch” and Gertrude threw herself at Auntie Mabel and we managed to pull them apart but not before Auntie Mabel lost a big chunk of her hair. Now none of the Coggleheimer side of the family are speaking to the Gizmobottoms and we’ve been banned from entering the Forest Ruins in groups of larger than three.
This is why I’ve always felt a little bit leery about following a god as so many of them seem to wish to rain grief and destruction on Norrath. But once I stopped to think about it, I wondered if it was really the gods that were so violent? Or was it just my aunts? Clearly I should not rely on third-party information to make my decisions.
Having recently learned the secrets of the stone rings, travel was very much on my mind. I decided to go out and visit the prophets myself.
Auntie Mabel did have a good point about Quellious and I was hopeful that I could speak to her prophet and sort out the entire question of religion quickly and easily. I found Pacificator Merrek sitting at the cliffs over Butcherblock Bay and asked him about Quellious and he offered to teach me the ways of the goddess of tranquility.
I can’t tell you quite what made me nervous – the conversation about peace of the body (which sounded to me a lot like always being prepared to fight) or the vehemence with which I saw Sister Sam sparring in the Steamfont mountains. I enjoyed the meditating but it was disconcerting to be told to focus my mind against my enemies. Perhaps this isn’t about Quellious so much as what her followers have become but I don’t think I wish to join their ranks.
Mithaniel Marr, the Truthbringer, seemed another obvious choice. I traveled to Kelethin where I spoke to Sir Bayden Cauldthorn, Lordknight of Valor. Paladins can be a bit fanatical about their religion but I liked the idea of a god focused on valor and love. However, Bayden (as he told me to call him) said he was unhappy with his role – better suited to a priest – and that he’d rather be on a battlefield. That did not sit well with me.
I asked him to teach me more despite my concerns – and to start he said I should make an altar. I saw no harm in that and began collecting Imbued Stones as per his instructions.
As a part of this, I went to the Statue of the Mourned and a huge blond-haired paladin was standing there. He was bigger than the mage tower, I swear it. I carefully walked up close and it became clear it was a Planar Manifestation. He blessed me but said nothing. It was all a bit creepy. I think I prefer my gods more subdued.
I dug in the area behind him and found the Valor Imbued Stones but the whole thing left me a bit shaken. When I returned to Bayden, he was still very focused on showing his merit as a warrior. I decided that I would prefer a god with less violent followers and moved on.
The experience with Mithaniel Marr led me to consider the Trickster – his followers are at least not trying to prove their battle prowess! I found a halfling, Tobel Patadash, on the docks of Enchanted Lands. He said he wanted to play a prank on a goblin (calling himself a profit of Bristlebane) and wanted my help! It was all a bit silly – Tobel wanted me to help make a diabolical pumpkin pie with which to fool Garby Ginger Gigglegibber (a perfectly friendly goblin, even if he can’t spell).
I did it. But really, isn’t it a bit unbecoming? I felt sorry for the goblin and I couldn’t help but wonder: who is the real follower – the halfling or the goblin? I don’t think goblins are unable to follow a god, in which case the halflings are simply being horrid.
The whole thing just left a sour taste in my mouth and I decided that Bristlebane was not for me.
After my experiences with the halflings and goblins, I decided to return to Butcherblock, where I found Civean Il’Pernod claiming that the Flame of Ro burns as a beacon to those who have the desire to shape their world and remake it in their own image. This sounded much more godly to me! He asked me if I had the courage and conviction and I told him yes, with all my heart.
He gave me a torch and asked me to light torches at each of the shrines. I felt honored to be given such an important task. But then Civean recommended that I learn the stories of Solusek Ro and sent me around the world to piece together the story of the god.
Did he realise that I was being naive? I don’t know but when I read the History of Ro, I was shocked! Fire, nukes, burning, destruction – this isn’t what I had in mind when I was lighting torches! I thought I was bringing light to the world but not fire and destruction!
I went back to Civean who told me that Solusek Ro’s brilliant visage would serve as a beacon in my travels. He told me that I should find a way to spread the truth of flame to those who have chosen other deities. I think he meant for me to incinerate them. I made my excuses and got away from him, quickly.
I have to admit, I was feeling somewhat depressed by now. Although I had been avoiding the whole religion question, I had believed that the gods, well, most gods, were good and honorable. Now, meeting the prophets, I was finding that they were violent and selfish and closed-minded. They made Aunt Mabel look like a pacifist!
I ended up at West Irontoe Fort where I met Bronlor Stormhammer, Conservator of the Underfoot. He told me the most remarkable story about how he was saved by Brell when a mine crashed in on him. I didn’t actually say that I was looking for religion but he asked me if I’d ever considered following Brell. He told me that he could see that I was drifting and that the Underfoot could serve as the foundation in my life.
What really impressed me was that Bronlor told me that Brell was also the god of the gnolls. Bronlor expressed sadness at the abuse gnolls have suffered from the invading armies – it’s not just me who hates the battles! He is the first prophet I have ever met who was open to his god serving other races! So I agreed to accept Brell Serilis as my deity.
Bronlor told me to first build my foundation of faith – to travel to caves around Norrath and mine sacred stones. I’m a little bit worried about this – I can get quite claustrophobic in enclosed spaces. Perhaps that is part of the test?
- The Furious Pacifist – Introduction
- The Isle of Refuge
- Paxmar Smells a Rat
- It’s a Wide World
- Paxmar Goes Abroad
- Tempest Chaser
- Sinking Sands and Frostfell
- Tunare’s Blessing