The Zenith of Herestra
Trellert, often referred to simply as The Wanderer is the god of Birth, Death, and Travel in Ephaesian lore. Representing the cycle of life, Trellert is regarded as one of the most fundamentally important gods. All citizens of Ephaesia give praise in some regard or another to Trellert, even if they do not strictly speaking belong to the Circle of Trellert.
Manifestations of Trellert have been reported so constantly throughout Ephaesia, that it is impossible to discern reality from fantasy. Reports often come from inn keepers who swear that they have encountered the Wanderer in their days. Throughout most reports a mysterious wanderer appears at the lodging and stays the night. But upon the next morning there is a newborn in one room and a corpse left in another. Others believe that those with stillborn children have been visited by the Wanderer. There are even tales of corpses taking an almost eternally youthful appearance in death who are also attributed to the works of Trellert.
The Wanderer of Kuwaio
Now the heart of The Phantom Council Empire, Kuwaio was once a simple farming village ruled by a tyrannical leader by the name of Ufuna. Through various nefarious deeds, Ufuna had wrested control of the of the village through manipulation and intimidation. Those who followed the Ufuna Way were gifted with (false) freedom and more rations. Those who stood in the way of Ufuna were enslaved and given only the barest of rations. All the while, Ufuna collected more and more resources, selling them for trade or gorging on them himself. Many years later, a decrepit stranger came wandering to the village seeking what rations could be spared. Even though many villagers were barely able to feed even their own families, many gave of their own rations to the stranger or offered what else they could. When finally the stranger came to the palace of Ufuna, he asked of the same rations. Ufuna first humiliated the stranger, beat him, and then sent him on his way. Within nine months, all those who had turned the stranger away were dead and the population of Kuwaio exploded.
The Circle of Trellert
Because of their incessant need to travel, the Circle of Trellert is considered highly disorganized by the general populace of Ephaesia. Lacking any kind of central governmental system, the Circle of Trellert is instead an associated name given to the worshipers of Trellert by the general population of Ephaesia. Because the Circle of Trellert are not organized into a distinct group the following is a only a representative sample of the common threads between each band.
Worshipers of Trellert are wanderers by nature. Seeing the world as a vast expanse that cannot possibly be seen in one lifetime, worshipers of Trellert seek adventure and new places at every possible opportunity. It is forbidden for worshipers to own land and thus there are no temples to be found in any city. Instead worshipers are encouraged to consider the open road their place of worship. Many of the larger bands of nomads have a wander “temple” of sorts where members can worship their god. Most often this “temple” consists of a small tent which is put up every night and taken down every morning. To earn money, the majority of members tend to be either midwives or undertakers, embracing the bookends of life. All members are taught extensively in biology, botany, trapping, and survival. Worshipers of Trellert believe in total egalitarianism, as all things are equal in birth and death. Regardless of age, race, or creed, all beings are treated with equal respect.
Initiation into the Circle of Trellert is simple: one must simply abandon all roots. Those seeking to join the Circle must abandon any property they own and seek out a band of nomads wandering the wilds. Those who prepare to travel generally have an easy time surviving and end up joining one of the many roving bands. Rituals vary broadly from band to band, but all of them involve the ritualistic death and rebirth of the initiate.
Those who worship Trellert cannot remain in the same place for more than a month. They are forbidden from reviving the dead and cannot attempt to save those who are dying. Worshipers eschew anything outside of the natural cycle and are fervently opposed to the undead. Members of the Circle consider it their divine duty to destroy the undead wherever they are found. Worshipers of Trellert are required to procreate at least once in their lifetime to continue the natural cycle.
The Circle of Trellert are anarchists. Having no central governing body, the Circle of Trellert is divided into hundreds, perhaps even thousands of nomadic bands referred to as a proosk. Every band is unique and no band has the same members on any given month, much less any given week. Fluidity is common among the bands as members constantly shift in and out of groups. As a result, there are no “leaders” among the Circle. Members simply look to whoever has chosen to take on leadership for the group at any given time. If members of the proosk don’t like the particular dynamics of the group, they simply leave. Because of this organizational structure, it is very rare to see any group of the Circle reach a size larger than fifty individuals,
Despite the crucial services that the Circle of Trellert provide to the populace of Ephaesia, they are often regarded with disdain. Much of this stems from the fact that members refuse to help the dying and are often accused of hastening the death of loved ones. Other complaints come from an apparent lack of disciplinary action against individuals who transgress the law or particular members of other organizations. Of course, members of the circle argue that all individuals must be treated as individual cases rather than assigning blame to the entire group; the general populace has yet to be swayed by this argument.