Order of the Red Band
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In 4707 AR, Sandpoint’s new stone cathedral was dedicated. The new structure replaced the wooden structure (the chapel) that was destroyed by fire in 4702 AR, five years earlier. Father Tobyn lost his life in the blaze.
The new cathedral stands atop the old chapel’s foundations, and surrounds the seven standing stones that were there long before the chapel’s dedication. The new cathedral is bigger and more elegantly designed thanks to the efforts of its lead architect “Abelin Korvus” of Magnimar. The combined efforts of the Mercantile League, Sandpoint’s citizens, the six faiths and the hard work of the town’s mayor Kendra Deverin made its construction possible.
The old chapel had six smaller shrines, each dedicated to a different diety. Father Ezakien Tobyn and his four acolytes were charged with tending the shrines and the town’s boneyard. The shrines were dedicated to (east) Desna and Sarenrae, (west) Abadar, and Shelyn, and (south) Gozreh, and Erastil.
- Desna – CG – Chaos, Good, Liberation, Luck, Travel
- Abadar – LN – Earth, Law, Nobility, Protection, Travel
- Sarenrae – NG – Fire, Glory, Good, Healing, Sun
- Shelyn – NG – Air, Charm, Good, Luck, Protection
- Gozreh – N – Air, Animal, Plant, Water, Weather
- Erastil – LG – Animal, Community, Good, Law, Plant
Mayor Kendra Deverin started the drive to erect a new church following the fire. Over time the plans to rebuild the chapel became something far more grand. The plans, funded by the six religions as much as the Mercantile League, gathered eonough money to pay for the current Cathedral. It took four years to build, drawing unskilled labourers from all over Sandpoint and Magnimar’s hinterlands. The impressive structure has shrines devoted to the same six deities venerated in the previous building. This multi-denominational Cathedral is run by Abstalar Zantus, a priest of Desna. It was to be dedicated on the same day as the Swallowtail Release, a celebration of the goddess known as the Great Dreamer, in 4707 AR.
Father Abstalar Zantus
Father Zantus is a follower of the goddess Desna and the current high-priest of the Sandpoint Cathedral.
Father Ezakien Tobyn (deceased)
Father Tobyn was the priest and caretaker of the Sandpoint Chapel before it burned in 4702 AR; Tobyn lost his life in the blaze.
Description of the space
Easily the largest building in Sandpoint, this impressive cathedral is also the town’s newest structure. It was built over the foundations of the previous chapel. Even the previous chapel wasn’t the first holy site in this location. The core of both the original chapel and the new cathedral is an open-air courtyard surrounding a set of seven standing stones themselves surrounding a circular stone altar. These stones served the Varisians for centuries as a place of worship; although they generally venerated Desna at these stones, the stones themselves are an ancient site of worship.
Varisian oral tradition maintains that the seven stones represent the seven towers of Desna’s otherworldly palace. Engraved faintly on each of the stones is a set of two Thassilonian runes. The runes are (mostly) recognizable, but their exact intent and reason for their placement is lost the secret of the time.
The original chapel built here was a collection of six different shrines, each its own building and connected to the others by open-air walkways. Desna’s worship was incorporated into these shrines as part of the peace accord with the local Varisians, but the original builders also incorporated five other deities as well. Four of these (Abadar, Sarenrae, Shelyn, and Gozreh) were patrons of the original founders of the Sandpoint Mercantile Consortium, while the fifth, Erastil, was the most popular among the initial settlers.
To the south, facing Sandpoint’s heart, are the shrines of civilization: Erastil and Abadar. Each in their alcove stands a well-appointed statue of the god. In the south-western corner Erastil sits on a simple stool. His wide-legged stance gives room for him to grip his upright and unstrung bow. He wears stone vestments more common to hunters than priests. Smaller statues of stags and elk stand behind him. The alcove is decorated with green vines that are planted behind the statue. The newly built trellises stand mostly empty, but provide lots of space for the plants to grow over time.
The south-eastern corner features a freestanding statue of an attractive human, with dark hair and wearing a golden breastplate. Abadar wears a cloak and fine clothes, in his hands he holds a massive key ring made of brass. The ring has many intricate keys, each of which can be moved independently. The alcove is otherwise unadorned, but a small alter stands just before the statue. The stones are structured in such a way as to appear as if there were key holes between each set of four blocks.
Between the two alcoves is a wide window. It can be shuttered from the outside; but is usually left open in all but the most inclement weather. The floor is covered in a thick bear’s hide, that has been artfully cut to appear to be under Erastil’s stool. It stops right at the edge of Abadar’s alter. The bear’s head has it’s mouth closed and stars out in to the center of the dome.
To the west, offering a view of the Old Light and the sea beyond, are the shrines of Shelyn and Gozreh.
The south-eastern shrine holds a statue that sits up on a fine seat. Her head is turned slightly towards the window and its details are permanently hidden by a stone cowl. Her delicate hands are folded in her lap and her body is shapely and attractive. Her long straight hair escapes the cowl and cascades down over her shoulders. On her right shoulder sits a white bird with a resplendently colored tail.
The south-western shrine is filled with a beautiful mosaic. In the mosaic Gozreh appears as a colossal humanoid whose lower body trails away into a mass of roiling elemental matter. His female avatar of the sea merges with water and appears young and beautiful woman with wild green hair. The male avatar of the winds and clouds merges with a storm cloud and appears as a weathered old man with a long white beard. The images touch one another in the middle of the mosaic. A small table sits in the center of the alcove, it holds a bowl of water.
To the east, offering a view of the Sandpoint Boneyard and the rising sun, are the shrines of Sarenrae and Desna.
The north-eastern alcove has a stained glass window depicting a bronze angelic beauty, with golden hair composed of flowing flame. From one hand emits a holy light which trickles down like liquid luminescence, whereas the other holds a scimitar emblazoned with radiant fire. The floor and surrounding walls are tiled with golden colors that flow out from the window as continuations of Sarenrae’s power.
The north-western alcove has a statue of Desna stands before the window. She is a raven-haired beauty that has gossamer butterfly wings. A giant skylight expands out over the alcove, giving those within it a clear view of the sky above. The walls are painted with vines and various plants. Small pots line the walls, each with new cuttings and plantings.
A large door between the north and eastern shrines leads off to the residences. The priests residence and library are closest to the temple, with the hostile and the stables in the northernmost part of the structure. The land between the hostile and the priests’ residence will eventually become a garden, if Father Zantus’ plans come to fruition.
James Jacobs. (2007). Sandpoint. Burnt Offerings, p. 61. Paizo Publishing, LLC. ISBN 978-1-60125-035-3
James Jacobs. (2007). Sandpoint. Burnt Offerings, p. 63. Paizo Publishing, LLC. ISBN 978-1-60125-035-3