Origins and Exploits
Avandra The Wanderer
Most of the gods reside in their own realms dotted throughout the multiverse. Avandra, however, has no divine realm or palace. She calls the world her home, and she wanders with no apparent final destination in mind.Given her travels, adventurers might meet Avandra at any time while adventuring. She can take any guise, and those who encounter her likely do not realize they are in the presence of the deity
Beliefs and Teachings - The Ever-Forking Path
The teachings of Avandra are very simple. Her followers learn from the past, strive for the future, but they believe that their place in the world in the present is most important of all. They see themselves walking down a road that started in the past and can lead to an infinite number of possibilities, though they do not know what lies on the path they are eager to know, thus a follower of Avandra is always seeking the horizon and the next adventure, daring the world to keep up. The core precepts of The Ever-Forking Path are as follows:
One Foot in Front of the Other
The Faithful are constantly on the move, they consider travel a gift and trade a joy.
Left, Right, or Straight Ahead
Believers promote freedom in all forms, whether that be liberating the bound or promoting self-determination and self-awareness in those who have fallen into stagnant, close-minded lives. They oppose slavery and oppression in all forms.
The Wind Always Blows
Avandra promotes change regardless of its form. Her faithful never shy away form change harnessing it as an opportunity to change lives for the better.
Eyes on the Horizon
The Faithful always look towards the future and bask in the opportunities that it holds.
The Greatest Blessing
Paramount among the favors bestowed by Avandra is luck. Avandra’s faithful don’t consider luck to be a random occurrence or something the gods mete out on a whim. Rather, they believe luck to be a reward a life filled with forthrightness and daring, and they teach others to respect luck in the same manner.
Her commandments are few:
- Luck favors the bold. Take your fate into your own hands, and Avandra smiles upon you.
- Strike back against those who would rob you of your freedom and urge others to fight for their own liberty.
- Change is inevitable, but it takes the work of the faithful to ensure that change is for the better.
- A feather held aloft by the wind in the presence of the viewer indicates a change is coming. A white feather predicts the end of a war or foretells of a period of prosperity. A dark feather indicates coming trouble.
- A person bearing three parallel scars (similar to the lines in Avandra’s holy symbol) is viewed as a likely unwitting agent of Avandra. Followers should speak to such a person and heed what he or she has to say.
- A follower who wakes to the sight of a young, three-leafed plant knows that the day will be a good one and that he or she should pursue the current path with greater vigor. Waking to the sight of buzzing insects or a snake is an ill omen; followers should be careful that day.
- Abrupt changes in weather also provide signs. The sudden end of a storm, followed by a rainbow, hearkens to great deeds being performed in the area. A clear, calm day suddenly beset by high wind indicates that one should be wary of betrayal or loss.
- One specific type of omen is more important than all these others. Witnessing a green and brown butterfly emerging from a cocoon signals that Avandra is nearby.
Avandra embraces all. As the goddess of luck, trade, travel, change and freedom Avandra is worshiped by nearly every intelligent race in some way or form, and she does not turn her back on any of her followers. Halflings are the official race of the goddess, due to her "adoption" of them during the Dawn War and even those halflings which do not worship her are in some way blessed by what they call "Our Mother".
Following halflings she is then most commonly worshiped by humans, elves, eladrin, dwarves, dragonborn and tieflings, especially merchants, travelers, adventures and gamblers of said races. Though she had a hand in the creation of the deva and the changelings, those races are no more predisposed to worshiping her over any other god.
Due to Avandra's taste for all things free and everchanging there is no set hiearchy within the Avandrian faith. No high-priest of Avandra exists, instead the faithful value individual merit in their ranks. In this way a new initiate to the faith earns the same respect and reverence as someone who has worshiped Avandra for decades. All followers of Avandra consider their brothers and sisters in faith to be on equal footing with themselves as they, as a group, work to deliver Avandra’s message to all.
Whenever a leader is needed, such as in times of war or strife, all an Avandra worshiper must do is stand and take a lead; if multiple within the faith are to do so than they simply work together dividing up responsibilites amongst the temporary leaders according to their personal strengths. If conflicts ensue, than a vote settles all affairs.
Initiation is not a complicated process of oaths and rites. Instead, the new member is welcomed to the faith by those attending, and then the group shares tales of derring-do while enjoying an evening feast and a round of drinks to toast the goddess.
Vestments and Holy Symbols
Members of the faith do not have a specific uniform. Instead, followers of Avandra garb themselves in whatever is appropriate for their current travels and the climate. When possible, they sprinkle the colors of Avandra—green and brown—into clothing that otherwise doesn’t contain those colors.
Holy symbols of Avandra vary just as much as her followers, usually crafted from whatever the faithful happened to find on them, be it bone, stone, leather or wood. Avandrian Holy symbols are universally simple, and the faithful disdain using something of value, which could instead be used to fund their travels and teachings.
Most followers of the Ever-Forking Path cary a journal in which they record their travels, whether as fact or in the context of a poem or epic play. When followers of the faih meet they read from said journal and sometimes will even act out scenes from the more entertaining adventures.
Temples dedicated to Avandra are rare. The most well known is the Temple of the Fates , in which worshipers of Avandra, Ioun , and the Raven Queen congregate to pay homage to the three gods of destiny.Small shrines to Avandra, on the other hand, are plentiful along major roadways and less traveled paths all over the world. Travelers, trade caravans, pilgrims, and adventurers stop at these shrines to rest and pray for continued safety in their travels and success in their coming endeavors.
Most cities have a small shrine of avandra somewhere near the entrance of the city. Almost all shrines look the same, a single standing stone roughly four foot tall and one foot in diameter. The side facing the nearest road has the symbol of avandra etched on it, which followers will make sure stays green or brown with the use of dyes, that way it can be seen from afar. The faithful will always stop anf fix one of these shrines if they find it in disrepair, and if unable they will give gold to a member of town if they swear to use such funds to fix the standing stone.
Though only followers of the faith know this, these shrines tend to have a small cache near the base full of helpful trinkets, whether it be a map of the area or enough gold for a stay in an inn and a days worth of food. These small caches are referred to amongst the faithful as Fortune's Cache.
Holy Days and Rites
Worshipers of Avandra have little use for holy days and clerical rites, but they do greet each new year with a short ceremony called the Rite of the Stepping Stone. At this event, all followers of Avandra in attendance take turns stepping upon a large, flat runestone blessed by Avandra. There they renew their faith and declare their intentions for the coming year, with the caveat that intentions could be changed by reality. Once a follower’s declaration is finished, he or she takes a long stride off the Stepping Stone as a metaphorical representation of his or her continuing journey on the Ever-Forking Path.
Aasternian a blue dragon is one of Avandra's most noted Exarchs
Rivals and Enemies
Avandra's chief rivals are Torog and Asmodeus