Tempus

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Tempus
Tempus symbol.jpg
Alignment 3E: Chaotic Neutral
4E: Unaligned
5E: True Neutral
Divine Rank Greater God
Pantheon Faerûn
Portfolio War, Battle, Warriors
Domains 3E: Chaos, Protection, Strength, War
4E: Protection, Strength, War
5E: War
Home Plane Great Wheel: Knight's Rest (Limbo)
World Tree/World Axis: Warrior's Rest
Worshippers Literally anyone who fights
Favoured Weapon Battle Prowess (Battleaxe)

Tempus is the god of War in the Forgotten Realms campaign setting, very analogous to Kord from the core cosmology, or Crom from Conan the Barbarian

History[edit]

He has been around since the very beginning, being created as part of the initial struggles between Selune and Shar, though he was not always the pre-eminent deity of war. That distinction originally went to Garagos, who was a far more primal incarnation of war and fury. Tempus represented martial skill, respect, and battle conducted in a proper-manner, as opposed to slaughter without end.

In the early history of the Realms, as a young demi-god, Tempus fought against Garagos and managed to turn his opponent's rage against him, claiming the title as "Lord of Battles". From a purely philisophical point of view, this probably has more to do with natural development of mortals and the ascendance of planned warfare and tactics over untrained screaming hordes, so Tempus' would naturally come to ascendance as well.

Tempus also has an odd relationship with Eldath, the goddess of peace, while he considers her absolutely naive and starry-eyed and generally ignores her on a one-to-one basis, he understands that "War" is pointless without "Peace" to contrast it against. By decree, his followers are forbidden from harming members of Eldath's clergy; those who do find themselves denied the daily resurrection in Tempus' home plane of Warrior's Rest, and fade into nothingness on their first death. Self-defense might be a good way to Rules Lawyer your way around this decree, though any "priest" of Eldath that attacks first is probably not actually a real priest of Eldath.

Worshippers[edit]

Tempus is not so much worshiped, but is rather revered and invoked. Merely praying to him is no guarantee of victory in battle, as he lends aids to all sides equally, trusting that the best warriors win battles and those who venerate him but still lose will find their way to him in the afterlife anyway. Therefore it is not uncommon to have both sides of an army charge into battle screaming TEMPUS! at the top of their lungs, while hacking each other to bits.

In this way he is not dissimilar to Khorne as a patron of war and battle, just without the crazy, in fact he leaves the wrath and rage part of his portfolio to Garagos (see below).

While Tempus despises cowards who shrink away from fighting, he has no taboos against retreating from hopeless battles, preferring his warriors to live to fight another day. He also prefers that needless bloodshed be minimised and urges his followers to avoid slaying non-combatants or resorting to dishonorable methods such as poisoning wells or engaging in torture. In fact these are sure ways to get yourself in Tempus' bad books and find that your spells and prayers get denied.

Servants & Exarchs[edit]

Garagos[edit]

Garagos
A counterclockwise circle of five arms clutching swords
Alignment 3E: Chaotic Neutral
4E: Chaotic Evil
Divine Rank Demigod, formerly Greater God
Pantheon Faerûn
Portfolio Skill at Arms, Destruction, Plunder
Domains 3E: Chaos, Destruction, Strength, War
Home Plane Great Wheel: Warrior's Rest (Limbo), Battle Garde (Pandemonium)
World Tree/World Axis: Battle Garde (Warrior's Rest)
Worshippers Barbarians, Rangers, Fighters, Warriors, Mercenaries
Favoured Weapon The Tentacus (Five Longswords)

To make any claim that Garagos is a servant of Tempus would be to invite a bitch-fit the likes of which you have never seen. Originally thought slain in the early battles over who would become "Lord of Battles", Garagos was actually dormant and has only reappeared recently when a Demon entered the realms and started using Garagos name to start an evil cult of war and fury, prompting the real Garagos to manifest and rip it a new one.

He represents war in its pure form of rage and violence, though in earlier times he was considered to be more even-tempered, since his return he is said to have lost all sense of mercy. It is believed these changes to his mentality forced him to move his divine realm from chaotic Limbo to the more dour/insane Pandemonium, either that or he was secretly in love with someone (it is not mentioned who, although his clergy are forbidden from acting against the church of Shar) and the move to Pandemonium represented him giving up all hope. Other punters say this is retarded and that Garagos had just started his decline into pure evil, with his realm moving with him.

It is thought that Tempus keeps him around for some reason, possibly because he didn't want the aspects of Garagos' portfolio to merge with his own. Other thinkers believe that Tempus is allowing him to continue with existence because he knows that someone else might challenge him for the position of "Lord of Battles" such as interloper gods of war from other realms (Anhur from the Mulhorandi pantheon comes to mind). Therefore Tempus may be keeping him around to use a stalking horse to flush out any potential rivals.

In any case, Garagos doesn't care what Tempus' intentions are and seeks to unseat his old enemy himself, though he simply doesn't have the power (or the brains) to do so.

Avatars of Garagos appear as multi-armed giants wielding a different weapon in each hand. The number of arms varies but is never less than five and he can grow new ones at will. Alternate forms include a floating mist of blood that acts as a poison to anyone other than the faithful of Garagos. For unknown reasons, at certain times of year when the stars align in a particular way, his avatar and those of Sharess and Jergal are summoned to Godswalk Keep in the Border Kingdoms of the realms as part of the "Meeting of the Three". Lucky adventurers who witness this event gain the power of Trueseeing for one day per level, though to actually witness this event you need to be within line-of-sight to the raging multi-armed avatar of the god of indiscriminate destruction and actually survive the experience.

Red Knight[edit]

Red Knight
The red knight lanceboard piece with stars for eyes
Alignment Lawful Neutral
Divine Rank Demigoddess
Pantheon Faerûn
Portfolio Strategy, Planning, Tactics
Domains 3E: Law, Nobility, Planning, War
5E: War
Home Plane Great Wheel: Prime Material Plane (Toril), Warrior's Rest (Limbo)
World Tree/World Axis: Red Tower (Warrior's Rest)
Worshippers Generals, Marshals, Monks, Strategists
Favoured Weapon Checkmate (Longsword)

Red Knight is the goddess of strategy and planning. Where Tempus is the lord of martial skill, warriors and "Battle" in general. Red Knight is the patron of officers and strategists, who string enough battles to win "Wars". Originally Red Knight was thought to just be an aspect of Tempus himself, and was only really known to manifest in dreams of chessboards to the faithful, whose moves revealed future strategies that would lead to victory. However it seems she has since coalesced into a separate deity, possibly in order to counterbalance the de-stabilising influence on war brought on by the return of Garagos. Her appearance during the Time of Troubles cemented her as an independent entity worthy of worship and so has begun forming her own sects away from Tempus.

However, Red Knight has a very limited clergy, and few temples that are separate from those that actually belong to Tempus (who doesn't have very many anyway, considering that he is worshipped on the battlefield) however, as wars become more sophisticated, her influence grows. Not only that but she has found allies in deities who are typically unassociated with Tempus such as Torm, and actually coaxed Valkur to join within Tempus' remit as a deity of naval battles.

Uthgar[edit]

Uthgar
Totem spirit, depends on the tribe worshipping
Alignment Chaotic Neutral
Divine Rank Demigod
Pantheon Faerûn
Portfolio Physical Strength, The Uthgardt Tribes
Domains Animal, Chaos, Retribution, Strength, War
Home Plane Great Wheel: Warrior's Rest (Limbo)
World Tree/World Axis: Uthgardtheim (Warrior's Rest)
Worshippers Uthgardt tribe members
Favoured Weapon Foestriker (Battleaxe)

Born as Uthgar Gardolfsson to a northlander thane, Uthgar spent the majority of his life raiding and pillaging the many settlements along the Sword Coast. Eventually, he raided the city of Illusk, slaying its wizard rulers. Whilst expecting to be lauded as a hero for killing the rulers, because magic = bad, he was instead driven inland along with his crew. They managed to survive the many dangers lurking inland and continued raiding villages they came across. Eventually the group Uthgar lead grew from the survivor impressed by his skill, and from villages who swore fealty to him. When an orc horde came from the mountains, Uthgar rallied his men and the villages to fight against them. Evetually Uthgar died after fighting the giant Gurt, succumbing to his wounds. The remaining followers renamed themselves as the Uthgardt, after their leader, which gave Tempus enough of a reason to elevate him to a demigod.

The way Uthgar is worshipped depends on the tribe, who took their names from the totem spirits Uthgar tamed to serve him during his life, and serve as intermediaries between him and the tribes. The tribes are:

  • Black Lion (GC)
  • Black Raven (CE)
  • Blue Bear (CE)
  • Elk (CN)
  • Gray Wolf (CN, destroyed by a Selûnite crusade)
  • Golden Eagle (?, disappeared centuries ago)
  • Great Worm (CG)
  • Griffon (TN, destroyed)
  • Red Tiger (CN)
  • Red Pony (?, disappeared centuries ago)
  • Sky Pony (CN)
  • Treeghost (NG)
  • Thunderbeast (CN, disappeared)

Valkur[edit]

Valkur
A cloud and three lightning bolts
Alignment Chaotic Good
Divine Rank Demigod
Pantheon Core / Faerûn
Portfolio Sailors, Naval Combat, Favorable Winds
Domains 3E: Air, Chaos, Good, Oceans, Protection
5E: Tempest, War
Home Plane Great Wheel: Safe Harbor (Ysgard)
World Tree/World Axis: Safe Harbor (Warrior's Rest)
Worshippers Sailors, Northlanders
Favoured Weapon Captain's Cutlass (Cutlass)

Not much is known about Valkur's origins, other that he was a ship captain from Mintarn who supposedly challenged Umberlee herself and managed to beat her, earning him elevation to becoming a demigod, with help from the Red Knight. He is depicted as a jolly sea captain, complete with blue coat and black beard, manning the helm of his great galleon Windjammer which can fly.

His worship is performed on seagoing vessels, and many of his clerics (called "Wavetamers") act as crewmen on ships to the point that they can receive double-blessings from Selûne to aid their navigation skill due to the fact that both deities are friends. Even though he has is own vessel; the Windjammer, his primary temple is actually a separate vessel called The Schooner of the Seas which may have been gifted to Valkur by Gond and is unmatched in size and speed, serving as a floating cathedral. A second floating church called The Temple of Endless Waves and Wind is built on the back of a giant sea turtle and swims around the Sea of Fallen Stars and is said to have reached its location by being carried overland on back of an army of reef giants during the Time of Troubles.

Valkur does have temples on land which are marked by tall wooden columns and sheets of cloth reminiscent of ship masts, though he is practically unknown in inland areas. Originally he was considered somewhat unreliable as a deity of choice, since he would routinely forget to answer the prayers of his faithful, causing him to become a god to be placated rather than venerated, though since the Time of Troubles his attitude became far more pro-active and hence his worship spread rapidly.

Of this merry little pantheon of battle-demigods, Valkur is the only one to have actually expanded into the Core D&D pantheon, getting his profile reprinted in Stormwrack where he exists in pretty much exactly the same form.

Realm[edit]

Tempus lays claim to the domain of Warrior's Rest (also called Knight's Rest in 2E). Originally this was a region of Limbo, but it has much in common with Ysgard in that the realm morphs and slowly reshapes itself entirely at random, but can be manipulated via strong force of will. Because of this, there are very few permanent fixtures: notably the Red Tower belonging to the Red Knight and Safe Harbor which is a rather quiet region of saltwater that allows temporary respite before warriors go off to fight naval battles.

Within Tempus' realm and those of his servitor gods, petitioners (usually) cannot permanently die. It is their eternal fate to do battle with each other until they are slain at which point their wounds will heal and they will rise again to join a different side. Tempus has the ability to negate such regenerative powers at will but typically reserves such judgments for those who display cowardice in battle. The only other way to bypass the regenerative quality of the petitioners is to injure them with Lawful aligned weapons.

Interestingly, the Githzerai have built monasteries on the plane (even after decoupling the realm from Limbo in the World Tree model) where they meditate and shape the realm to their own ends. The petitioners rarely involve the Githzerai in their eternal warfare, mostly because of their ability to Ki Strike them to True Death.

In 4E, Beshaba moved her realm of Blood Tor here too, because for some reason she and Tempus became lovers, though the exact details of the move are not given.

The deities of 5th edition Forgotten Realms
Lawful Neutral Chaotic
Good Ilmater - Nobanion
Torm - Tyr
Chauntea - Deneir - Eldath - Enlil
Gwaeron Windstrom - Lathander
Mielikki - Milil - Mystra - Shiallia
Lliira - Lurue - Selûne - Sharess
Sune - Tymora - Valkur
Neutral Azuth - Helm - Hoar
Jergal - Kelemvor
Red Knight - Savras
Siamorphe - Ulutiu
Akadi - Ao - Auppenser - Gond
Grumbar - Istishia - Karsus
Kossuth - Oghma - Silvanus
Tempus - Ubtao - Waukeen
Finder Wyvernspur - Ibrandul - Leira
Mask - Shaundakul - Uthgar
Evil Asmodeus - Bane
Gargauth - Gilgeam
Loviatar
Auril - Bhaal - Myrkul
Shar - Velsharoon
Beshaba - Cyric - Garagos
Malar - Moander - Talona
Talos - Umberlee