Proposal: Substantiating the Lady of Sorrows

I'm thinking of making a wayang oracle, and I was browsing the wiki looking for something I could base it on. On Sumbru's page, it mentions a goddess named "The Lady of Sorrows," who is worshiped by a group of oracles. This is already a god, but she has nothing in the way of actual fluff. However, what she does have is enough for me to try and build around her instead of, say, making a brand new one.

The Lady of Sorrows

Titles: The Shadow Mother, The Concealer and Preserver
Alignment: Neutral Good
Portfolio: Souls, Ancestors, Preservation and the Cycle of Life
Cleric Alignments: LG, NG, CG, TN
Domains (Subdomains): Darkness, Good, Healing (Restoration), Repose (Ancestors, Souls), Trickery (Deception)
Inquisitions: Conversion, Fate, Heresy, Oblivion, Vengeance
Mysteries: Ancestor, Bones, Life
Weapon: Kris (Short Sword)
Holy Symbol: A Weeping Eye

The Lady of Sorrows weeps for her husband and children: The Fire Father who was slain by the Stranger, and the Wayang, many of whom were hunted by the False Lord's creations. She is the Keeper of the Cycle of Life, by which the Wayang are born and reborn, becoming shadows on death until they may start anew. Indeed, the Wayang revere all shadows as the past and future lives of their people. She has no true organized religion; instead she blesses certain individuals with powers and wisdom allowing them to commune with their dead kin, among other things. These oracles are revered almost as much as the shades that possess them and the Lady herself, and are usually the leaders of the people. Communing usually involves sealing oneself in a room (or similar closed area), lighting a fire (representing the Old Father), and speaking to both their own and the shadows of puppets placed around the flame.

History (Oral):

We lived in caves, in the land beyond, we did. We worshiped the Father of Fire and the Mother of Shadows, the creator and the recreator, and lived well for millenia in our dark, nameless land. In that time we had our own heroes and legends of old, like yourselves, yet they had no names, for we had no voices, for we had no need. We told our tales with our puppets, that of the Slayer of the Nightstalker and that of the Great King, of the mighty and just Father and the kind and nurturing Mother. We lived our lives in silence and peace... until he came. The Stranger who named himself Lord, and brought with him beasts and war. Our mighty civilization was laid low, for we knew not how to fight. And so we hid, those few that were left, the Mother watching over us while the Father challenged the Lord. The Father was vastly outnumbered, but he alone wielded fire to keep the army at bay while they fought. The Father bested the Lord easily, though made the mistake of letting the villain live, for no sooner was his back turned before the lord was upon him again, slaying him and dousing his flame.

Sumbru's fate was preordained. The gate was the key, for out of death came life, the salvation of a culture long oppressed and on its last limbs. For years they ran and hid under the Lady's concealing shadows, always under pursuit of the Lord of Night. She wept for she could not save us, she could not slay he who slew the Father, and she had not the strength or power to create a new gate, so she looked further out into the unknown for a way out. And so we ran, discovering our voices and learning to fight for many years more, until she found the answer. She found Sumbru's gate.

The Lady felt the bond weakening as the connection broke; she preserved it, and opened it before us so that we could finally escape. That was when we came to the city, both already ravaged by war. It could not stand up to the Lord's minions as she had hoped, and within the week, they had overrun the city as well. Thankfully, this world was stronger than the one before, and together we could push the hordes back, even if we could not destroy them or him. Containment would suffice, and so it did for a few decades, before He tried a different tactic. Whether through promises of wealth or power, he found followers among the humans that had stayed, and had a stronger foothold in the city. Worship of the Lady, as well as the older gods of Sumbru, was outlawed under punishment of death.

The Lady still speaks to and through us, but her presence feels weaker. She was bound to the other side and so she had to stay, but the spirits still guide us and others now too, as those few who survived flocked to the comfort of this new, benevolent goddess. The Great Cycle continues in this strange new world.

Holy Texts:
Much of Wayang history is oral, and many stories are portrayed through shadow puppet plays. There are roughly 200 that are committed to memory by the priesthood (individually called Dalangs), though efforts are being made to inscribe them into a single text, the Buku Bayangan.

Shrines and Temples:
There are no permanent places of worship within the city, as public worship is strictly forbidden by the Inquisition. Most followers have a hidden shrine within their home, usually centered around the hearth. The Dalangs must also make efforts to conceal themselves, as their inborn powers and relation to the Lady make them heretical figures, and thus are ripe targets for servants of the Lord of Perpetual Night.
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I'm not sure how such material is brought into 'reality'. I have noticed there is a lack of information compared to what we're used to seeing in professionally created RPG religions. I think we have enough deities for a believable pantheon, although fleshing them out is a good idea.

As a player, the information I'm looking for also needs to include Mysteries for Oracles, Inquisitions for Inquisitors, and any applicable Subdomains of the main domains. Also as a player, this would be on my short list of deities I'm comfortable writing down on a character sheet. And since one of her domains is healing, giving people who will play competent healers more options will hopefully prevent the 'I can't find a choice I like' syndrome.
I mainly based the format off of what I've seen in the wiki, as well as similar proposals. But I can see your point, so, I guess I'll include those other divine aspects.

EDIT: I added the Restoration, Defense, Ancestors, and Souls subdomains, as well as the Ancestor, Bones, and Life Mysteries (And I have another one in mind, but it'll require another proposal). As for inquisitions, well...

I don't think there would be any inquisitors fighting in her name. She is primarily the matron of the Wayang, most of whom live in Sumbru, where they just don't have the numbers to defend themselves, and are basically on the losing side of a war between gods. Also, their main enemies are inquisitors themselves, so... :p
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Maidhc O Casain

Na Bith Mo Riocht Tá!
I wish I were better at making deities and such, but it's never been "my thing." As a result, I tend to like just about anything that has a modicum of original thought or planning, and to leave serious discussion of it to the other judges.

This one looks good to me :D.


Community Supporter
Very evocative! I like it. I do have more substantial comments to make but am lacking time atm. I'll try to get something more up tonight.


Some time to think further. I wonder if Trickery would be an appropriate domain. Includes things like invisibility.

I would still support a list of appropriate Inquisitions for her, even if there were no Inquisitors currently in service. However, I suspect there would be, as they are the most sneaky of the divine classes and likely to survive in an environment where going unnoticed has obvious value. I imagine they would not have very similar duties to those who rule the city. Possible list of inquisitions to pare down from: Conversion (because everyone gets it), Fate, Fervor, Justice, Persistence. I'd add Heresy to the short list if there was any suspicion of a history of enemy agents within the ranks of the Lady.

For the most part, Inquisitor seems to be a rarely played class, anyway.


Community Supporter
FYI, when I wrote the Sumbru page I intended the Lady of Sorrows to have been Sumbru's patron deity from before the war and destruction of the gate (likely a goddess of prosperity) who mourns the loss of her people/city and took on a different aspect. But this is the great thing about leaving a seed of an idea undeveloped: someone else will come along and develop it into something that is totally different and even better.

The only thing I would change/add to what you have done above is note that the Lady has begun accepting some followers from among the humans of Sumbru also (my latest adventure, taking place in Sumbru, had a side quest of rescuing a young human man who was caught with a symbol of the Lady).

I don't see anything wrong with the mechanics. The eye weeping shadows is cool. Beliefs and Oral History sections are well done. If you felt like it you could add sections on relationships (with other gods), appearance and emissaries, notable worshipers, temples, shrines, and holy sites, holy texts, and holidays (if any of those categories are relevant) but I would vote yes for it as it stands.
Fluff: Far better than I can do. A+ there.
Crunch: I would replace Protection (Defense) with Trickery (Deception). The first are abjuration based, while the latter are illusion based abilities. As a racial patron, she would grant abilities that synergize well with the wayang's natural capabilities. Both styles provide protection, but the difference is via defiance vs. subterfuge.

We have inquisitors? :-S In the 100+ PFS games that i have played or GM'd, I don't think I have seen one in play yet. :p Okay, we should have the info for them, just in case it happens.
PS. Eanos is just a ranger with fancy tricks. :heh:
I think the reason why we never see very many inquisitors is that they're a very limited class, concept-wise. While I do personally love the class, I have to admit that no matter what fluff is behind it, or what weapons they're wielding, each inquisitor is still essentially the same character: A badass loner who slays [x] and purges the [y] for the glory of [z]. And while that's still very cool, I think a lot of people would much rather try to experiment with their characters than recycle the same ones over again.

Anyway, I'm glad everyone likes it so far. :D I was debating with myself whether or not I should include Trickery, but I figured I should leave Protection in since it was essentially the only listed domain originally. *Handwavius Retconnicus*
Of course, we're probably not ever going to see a Wayang taking advantage of those domains anyway, what with that WIS penalty cutting into the Cleric/Inquisitor's primary casting stat... which is probably all the more reason to open it up to followers from other races, no? :p
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I've played an Inquisitor a bit, and I suspect the lack of interest in the class to stem from multiple reasons. These include (but are not limited to) a negative name that implies a narrow scope, a lack of being good at anything (having a role in a group) and lacking any particular redeeming look at feel issue that attracts a niche of players.

PS: And the proposal looks nicely fleshed out now.
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I added a couple more sections.

And yeah, I like to think of them as divine bards. They don't have a major focus in any one field, but make for great support characters when one is needed. They also have the same spell progression (You could make an argument that the alchemist is the wizard to the bard's sorcerer as well, but we're already off-topic enough as is :p).


Gah! I really need to remember to look at the actual forum instead of just my subscribed threads list. It's moot, but add my thumbs up to everything. :)