On this page you can find local established cults of the Mass. Players entering game as priests or Nations of Ascenor may use these local cults as their main faith with approval from the Storytelling Director. You will be required to display an understanding of the tenants of the faith as well as provide a background of how your character became one of the faithful. This can be done via the background submission form.
Players who are baptized in game are not required to submit an approval.
The Free Fire Alliance
The Free Fire Alliance began in the belly of a Hansfield slave encampment and grew from there. Starting as a rebellion militia movement, the FFA consisted of a small group of life-bound slaves who believed that a person’s freedom was theirs to claim and keep, at all costs – that even someone who chose slavery, someone who chose to sacrifice their freedom, were giving up the only true and real right they had. Anyone within the slavery system is part of the problem – the enslaved, the slavers, those who buy or purchase wares from them, and those who support them. They also believe slavery can take quieter, subtle forms -- that the oppression of one's free will is insidious and cannot be masked under more "politically correct" means.
What began as a militia quickly picked up speed across all strains and well beyond a guerrilla group, empowered by their desire for freedom above all costs. Their faith, powered purely by their strength and belief in freedom, has become both savior and executor for many within the Mass. They now consist of pocket religious quasi-military groups spread across the region, centered in locations where oppression and slavery are the strongest. They are very hard-line about their beliefs and, given their personal background in slavery, have little qualms about ending slavery – violently and with finality – if people deny their opportunity for reclaiming and respecting freedom. However, they also understand the need for rehabilitation in the face of slavery, and even those who do not join the FFA (which is common), they will make sure they teach and rehabilitate to exist in society.
- Freedom is the only true possession a person can have and it must be valued at all costs.
- Those who choose slavery, enslaved or slavers, are in all forms oppressors, aiding the system, and must be stopped.
- Every person should receive one chance to mend their ways, but those who squander their Freedom shall not be tolerated.
- Aid the freed slave or slaver in any way, for they must be taught how to live again.
The Followers of the Deep
One of the curiosities of the Mass is its Gravemind biomass. With the majority of it underwater, early survivors used to capitalize on the riches that were buried just below the ground floor of the ocean – old world treasures, technology, medicines and artifacts. It became so popular and well-known that rich Pureblood families would take ‘pleasure cruises’ out of Rogue Island and Baytowne and hire a Jones to scavenge them up treasures, much like old-world pearl hunting.
However, the more they scrapped the bottom, the closer they got to the biomass of the Gravemind which was expanding upward at the same time. Eventually, those pleasure cruises stopped coming back – or they came back with a shipful of people who were , forever changed, a twisted visage of their former selves. Often spreading “the truth” that they found when at the bottom of the sea, they claimed that the ocean and the ichor at its depths opened their eyes, and that all peoples should worship the ocean and its secrets in order to become enlightened.
Now the ocean biomass is so close to the water that it’s rumored that the ocean acts as a natural conduit for the biological and psychological influences of the Gravemind. It has made ocean exploration a source of treachery for sailors, not only because of the biomass, but because of how it also influences the deep water sea creatures that live in the deep waters. Destroying those creatures has become a journey of the faithful for many of those who ascribe to the tenants of the Deep, whether to test themselves and their faith, or to defend those who may fall to it.
- The ocean is all powerful, it gives and takes away.
- Never seek the unknown, the Bottom is where madness dwells.
- Monsters of the sea must be slain, their flesh is the ocean's bounty.
- To the faithful, the ocean shares its deepest secrets and treasures, to its doubters, a typhoon of doom.
- There is but one fate for the mad, to be driven to the bottom and languish forever as slaves of the Bottom.
- Offerings of madness offer great reward, but can levy a hefty toll on the soul.
Based on those tenants, The Followers of the Deep has two subsect cults in addition to the standard faithful:
The Hats – a byproduct of the first forays into the Deep, the Hats are a mentally shattered group of individuals who have become so broken by what they experienced that they no longer recognize humanity. Their life line is their hat – hence the name. The sailing cap they went out with is their sense of self, their identity, and their tether to being sure they exist in the real world. Hats who lose their hats become close to catatonic. Lead by a local graverobber, the Hats are intensely knowledgeable regarding sailing, ocean-based creatures, and the Gravemind. Their goal is defend the landbound portions of the Mass from the horrors of the ocean-based biomass at all costs, up to and including their lives. The Hats are not an accessible cult for new characters.
The Rivermen – a sect of the deep cult that is now landbound, the Rivermen are a classically based Gravemind cult that believe death is the path to understanding, and that all should experience it. They are heavily tied into local Murder Inc. associations, since they often take assassination jobs with no requirement for payment. The signs of their work is often indicated by the placement of coins on the dead individuals eyes, believing that it will help them pass through the Grave.