Tales of the Bloodstone Lands
Lady Luck, the Lady Who Smiles, Our Smiling Lady, Tyche’s Fair-Haired Daughter
Symbol: Silver coin with Tymora’s face surrounded by shamrocks
Home Plane: Brightwater
Alignment: Chaotic good
Portfolio: Good fortune, skill, victory, adventurers
Worshipers: Rogues, gamblers, adventurers, Harpers, lightfoot halflings
Favored Weapon: A spinning coin (shuriken)
Tymora (Tie-MORE-ah) is sometimes called Tyche’s fair-haired or fair-tressed daughter or Beshaba’s bright sister, but these are more poetic titles than designations of her maternal lineage or her hair color. In actuality, Tymora is half of the deity once known as Tyche, with Beshaba being the other half.
Tymora inherited Tyche’s grace and kindness when that goddess split into two beings in the Dawn Cataclysm, a war among the gods that long preceded the Time of Troubles and is said to have heralded the fall of Myth Drannor. Beshaba garnered more of Tyche’s wanton, willful nature, sensual side, and restless energy.
Tymora’s faith is one of the most common in the Faerun, in particular since it caters most heavily to a highly mobile, relatively wealthy, and intrinsically powerful group who live by their wits and by their luck: adventurers. Tymora is fickle but playful and never vengeful or malicious. She likes a good joke and has been known to play an occasional practical joke on some of the more straight-laced Faerunian deities, such as Helm and Tyr. She is reputed by sages to have had short-lived romances with several of the good male deities of Faerun, but these ended amicably on both sides after a short while. She likes merriment and festive occasions and rumors abound at gaming houses throughout Faerun of people who spotted her at the tables during one holiday or another, laughing and having a good time with all.
Tymora is also considered part of the Halfling Pantheon.
Tymora is an extremely popular goddess among adventurers, and her temples may be found wherever there is a strong adventuring population. Lady Luck is beloved of those who live or work in danger, for she rewards the faithful and others who live in the manner she deems proper—daring all and trusting to chance—with her favor: good luck. The Lady’s ways may seem fickle to the uninitiated or nonbelievers, for by her very nature the support she gives is uncertain in all particulars. “The joy of the doubt and the danger,” also known as the Lady’s Joy and the Lady’s Way, is that which is most dear to her true followers. Many pay her lip service in times of need; her answers then seem truly random, for the Lady helps those who help themselves.
Tymora’s priests are the first choice of a badly wounded adventuring party dragging itself into town, and as a result, the church is relatively wealthy. With that wealth comes a strong independent streak among the different churches of Tymora. Each Tymoran temple is its own independent operation with its own clergy, and each temple reflects the tastes of its high priestess or priest. A large network of shrines and temples to Lady Luck has spread throughout the heartlands of Faerun. While the shining, featureless disk that is Tymora’s symbol most often marks these houses of worship as belonging to the Lady Who Smiles, in some temples, Tymora’s symbol is represented as a floating, randomly and slowly turning sphere of everirrigrit silver.
In the face of the independent tradition of the organized Tymoran faith has come an attempt in the recent past to unify the church under a grand patriarch in the manner of the old faith of Oghma. Leading this suggestion is Daramos Lauthyr, High Priest of the Lady’s House in Arabel. It was in Lauthyr’s temple where Tymora manifested during the Time of Troubles, and she remained there, protecting the city with her power, during the worst of that time. The other churches have been extremely resistant to proclaiming the Arabellan church the center of Tymoran faith.
Both sexes and all races are equal in the eyes of Tymora and her clergy, though in practice human women occupy most of the more exalted ranks of the priesthood. Of the nonhuman races, a few elves and half-elves have decided to become Tymoran clergy even in the face of the chilly reception such a calling receives in elven society. Mystics of Tymora serve both within temple ranks and as itinerant servants of the goddess who report to none but her (though Daramos would like to change this).
Tymora’s faith teaches that one should be bold, for to dare is to live. The battle cry of the followers of Tymora is “Fortune favors the bold.” A brave heart and willingness to take risks beat out a carefully wrought plan nine times out of ten. One must place oneself in the hands of fate (meaning in the hands of Tymora) and trust to one’s own luck. Tymoran clergy are told that the Lady’s own luck never fails. If she appears to mortals as a victim of mischance or misfortune, she is doubtless causing this state of affairs as a deliberate test. Clergy members should know this, but not speak of it to those not in the Lady’s service. Priests of Tymora should bear and conduct themselves as their own masters, showing their good fortune—and acceptance of bad fortune—as a confidence in the Lady and in themselves. Lady Luck bids that each mortal chase his or her own unique goals, and it is in this chase that the Lady aids. Those who have no direction or goals soon know the embrace of the Lady’s dark sister, Beshaba, for those on no set course are at the capricious mercy of misfortune, which is no mercy at all.
The clergy of the Lady go throughout Faerun urging folk to take chances and pursue their dreams, and to not spend all their days planning and daring nothing. (They do not, as some folk say, encourage folk to indulge in reckless whims and frivolity.) Having offered such counsel, Tymoran clergy are duty bound to aid those who have dared with healing spells and other magical aid (sometimes surreptitiously) so as to reinforce the message of the good fortune one can win by trusting in Tymora.
Holy Days/Important Ceremonies
The church of Tymora has no set rituals, and ceremonies and duties vary widely from temple to temple – but the clergy headed by Daramos Lauthyr of Arabel seem to be steadily organizing and imposing order on the previously freewheeling priesthood of the goddess.
Whatever their differences throughout the years, the clergy of Tymora have always adhered to rituals of greeting, touching their silver disks (the holy symbols of Tymora) to each other (and often embracing to do so) after watchwords of recognition have been exchanged. To unknown persons and beings they know to be worshipers of Tymora, but possibly laity, they say: “Life is short. Live it as Tymora means it to be lived!” This is answered by: “Dare all, and trust in the Lady.” The watchwords between friends, or when both parties know each other to be clergy of Tymora, are simpler: “Defy,” answered by “Dare much.”
Midsummer is the most important festival of Tymora—a wild, nightlong revel of reckless, mischievous derring-do and romantic trysts. It is a time for the wandering clergy to gather and meet with Harpers, those of allied faiths, and relatives. Many missions and plans are laid at such times. The most holy festival of Tymora is Starfall, which occurs on the 22nd day of Marpenoth which is believed by the followers of Tymora—though not by the rival clergy of Beshaba—to be the date of Tyche’s destruction and Tymora’s birth. On this date, clergy who have earned advancement are formally acclaimed and presented with tokens and vestments appropriate to their new station.
Major Centers of Worship
During the Time of Troubles, Tymora’s earthly avatar appeared in Arabel (after her furious, drawn battle with Beshaba) and stayed in her temple there, which created a great sensation in Cormyr. The fact that Arabel was spared most of the destruction visited on Waterdeep, Tantras, and other cities during the Godswar was taken as a boon from the goddess herself. With the end of the Godswar a thick fog covered Arabel, and when it lifted, the goddess had gone with it.
High Priest Daramos Lauthyr now leads a growing Assembly of the Faithful at the Lady’s House, the temple of Tymora in Arabel. Daramos is attempting to codify and record a set of rules for the clergy using his influence as the head of the temple Tymora dwelt in during the Time of Troubles. The rest of the Tymoran clergy are strongly resisting any such restrictive regimen. Most agree to the wisdom and preeminent rank of Daramos, but not to a written set of laws. They are also strongly resisting Daramos’s claims that the seat of the Tymoran faith ought to be the Lady’s House and its leader should head the church.
The church of Tymora has a continuing relationship with the Harpers, a secret society working for good through Faerun and involving members of many races, classes, and other faiths. The church sponsors some adventuring companies, and countless adventuring groups have independently dedicated themselves to Lady Luck after she has smiled on them in a sticky situation. A special fellowship of clergy within the church itself, the Fellows of Free Fate (or Triffs, as they are colloquially known), have dedicated themselves to countering the efforts of Beshaba, and especially of the Black Fingers, her assassins. Any clergy member may join who shows experience, dedication to the cause, and is vouched for by a senior Fellow.
The standard clerical dress varies from temple to temple, ranging from full habits and headpieces in Arabel to simple robes in Shadowdale. Blue and silver are colors often seen. Personal taste of the matriarch or patriarch influences the dress code, as does climate (natural and political) and availability of fine clothing. The common item worn by all clergy is the disk of Tymora, usually carried on a small chain.
Adventuring Garb: All adventuring or traveling clergy members wear whatever garments they please, though the colors blue and silver are still predominant. High boots also seem favorite fashion elements. All priests continue to wear Tymora’s silver disk next to their skin, usually as a medallion worn around the neck; however, many clergy also wear smaller holy symbols as anklets, bracelets, or at their hips, under their clothing.
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