Titles: The Wondering Ox, Mist Bringer, The Grey Guide
Portfolio: death, secrets, traveling, trickery
Typical Worshipers: preparers of the dead; con artists; seekers of lost knowledge
Domains: Death, Knowledge, Trickery
Minor Ritual: Reading the entrails of a falcon.
Sample Blessing: “May the Ox be waiting far down a long road.”
Outside of the priesthood who tend his shrines, very little is known about this god. In the Holy Texts of Calabus, Advenus can be seen weaving his way into the plans of Allafar and Allamar. His goals always hidden and mysterious. There is a secret text, the Scrolls of Tacitus, read only by his priests that is said to reveal the mind of the god, but his priests hold the god’s secrets well.
Advenus is the only one of the Avitian gods who is known to travel among mortals. He takes on the outer shape of travelers, merchants, and even livestock and walks the dusty roads of Æliode. As he travels he aids some he meets and harms others. He has given powerful gifts to some while others he takes all they own. If there is an endgame to all of his actions, it is likely that only he knows what it is.
Mortals do know that when they die, Avenus will appear to them as a massive ox. He will carry them from the life they lead up into the sky to the Manor of Allamar to be judged. During the journey Avenus will always stop and whisper a secret to the soul, a secret so powerful that the soul may never repeat it. It is believed that every soul is told a different secret. As with most of Avenus’ actions, he reason for doing this is known by no mortal. Some believe that these secrets affect the judgment of Allamar, but if it is for the better or the worse is itself one of Advenus’ secrets.
Priests of Advenus are few and rarely encountered. They tend towards reclusive lifestyles and no major temple to the god is known to exist. Priests may keep a small shrine in a larger temple dedicated to another god or build small shrines in remote locations, but this is rare. Most priests travel with more portable shrines that are ornately sculpted clay vessels containing an icon or two.
The exception to this rule is the Sect known as the Ladies of Passing. This sect is a silent order whose role in society is to gather and prepare the dead for funerary services. The members of this sect are well versed in the death rituals of most other cultures and, though they ultimately serve Advenus, are comfortable and able to perform the rituals proper to the beliefs of those they serve. Even though the sect is called the Ladies of Passing, there are some men who have joined the sisterhood.
Those who worship Advenus tend to be engaged in morally grey pursuits or find themselves in situations in which “the unknown” plays a great role. People who find themselves lost, both physically or metaphorically, often offer up prayers to Advenus in the hope that he will show them a path. The advice received from the god is often followed warily as he has been known to lead a worshiper not in the direction they wished to go, but towards a direction that serves the god’s own purposes. Those who have suffered a recent loss to death often prayer to him for their loved one’s safe passage to Allamar. Sailors and merchants will make offerings when they begin new business ventures. Those whose professions take them outside of the law also pay homage and sacrifice when beginning a dangerous and illegal activity. Most in the world believe Advenus sole role is to carry the dead to Allamar and are unaware of the god’s occasionally malevolent teachings.