The New Divine Order
The Lady of Ten Thousand Tomes
“Are you sure about this? Aren’t you supposed to be like the dutiful daughter sort?”
“I am the most dutiful of daughters, sir, and don’t you ever forget it, but my father excels in quick decisions and reactive solutions to everyday problems. However, he sometimes fails to see the bigger picture or view the whole board as it were, but that is perfectly fine for I am happy to serve as his peripheral vision. Do you understand?”
“I think so, milady. Like chess, right? You see one move ahead of your dad.”
“One move? Please! Sir, I beat my father at chess when I was eleven.”
Azelia is the goddess of learning and forms one part of the Arcane Trinity within the New Order along with Elisabet and Zethina. She represents the wizardry aspect of that triangle, that is magic gained through study and hard work. On a wider aspect, she also represents learning and study of all topics and she possesses and embodies technical expertise in many a craft. She is the firstborn and favorite child of Anzo who has been grooming her to take over his seat should the unforeseeable occur. The identity of her mother has been lost to time, though scholars have placed many a theory on the table.
“She holds herself like a princess, like a queen, like a goddess. She is here on her father’s request, no doubt, since she is writing in her book and is mostly uninterested in my questions, though she answers them instantly without losing focus on both our conversation nor her current page. I asked her what she was doing and she looked at me with those shattering blue eyes, surveyed me for a moment, and then explained. I followed for perhaps a sentence or two before her words had more meaning behind them than I could possibly fathom.” – excerpt from A Comprehensive Understanding of Divinity by Lester Matteson
Azelia was born near the end of the Teotl War, an event which Anzo celebrated a shower of a hundred shooting stars. Unusually, for a child of a god, she received a great deal of attention and visitations from her father even during her mortal years and she was raised in the lap of luxury – as a princess in a Dauphinian palace. It is important to note that from an early age, Azelia was told of her divine purpose and spent most of her life preparing for her duties in the Celestial City. She devoured the great library in the Dauphinian capital, exhausted every tome by the time she was fifteen and so she left to travel the world in the search of greater knowledge. In her twenties, she first notably defied her father’s wishes to visit the library at Deluge Gate, a great city in the Dwarven Empire and she continued to cross the continent learning all she could of the world she would day divinely oversee.
Legends are murky as to when Azelia first met her great rival, the witch Zethina, but the Age of Heroes is littered with descriptions of their clashes – the shattering of the crystal palace, the infamous purple storm in the skies of Neflheim, and the curious case of the disappearing fortress are just a few examples from their long list of encounters. Eventually, Azelia won their feud and Zethina was burned at the stake. Azelia was hailed as a hero.
Unlike many eventual divinities, Azelia, with her father, planned her own death in order to better time her ascension. There was a large ceremony, a great feast, before Azelia retired to her chamber and took medicine that caused her mortal body to die. She immediately took her place in the Celestial Bureaucracy – a job she had prepared for her whole life and one she exceled at.
Appearance and Personality: Azelia is, in many ways, the spitting image of her father – although, unlike him, she does notably have a mutable form. She was golden brown hair (a shade lighter than her father’s) and deep blue eyes that match his in every detail. Unlike her father however, she prefers more elaborate clothing designs – while he garbs himself in simplicity, Azelia prefers the complicated, long regal dresses that she wore in her royal upbringing. She delights in fashion and looking spectacular, especially for grand events, and is not above using magical cantrips to improve her appearance. Even her lounging clothes, for when she reads alone in her vast library chambers, are elaborate and stylish. Many scholars and worshippers have noted her great fondness for hats – mostly pointed, but she has been depicted with all manner of types. So much so that ‘does Azelia need another hat?’ has become a tongue-in-cheek phrase used in Coralla and some other noble classes to mean ‘of course’. Her voice is often noted to be perfectly clear, with every syllable uttered perfectly enunciated – no matter in what language she deems to speak and reeks of aristocracy.
As for her personality, she is regularly compassionate and kind with a regal demeanor befitting a princess of heaven – though she can occasionally be cold and arrogant as is so often seen with nobility. Perhaps the key difference between Anzo and Azelia is how use their compassion – Anzo is the friend, the one that feels for the lower classes and mingles among them, tells them that they are all important; while Azelia is the benevolent noble – the powerful lady that does everything she can to help them, but never lets them forget her status as above them. Prayers and sermons to her are addressed in a formal manner – she is normally referred to as Lady Azelia or milady – unlike Anzo’s prayers, which are much more informal and full of slang. (In modern terms, Azelia is the stern, but kind principal, while Anzo is the cool teacher who lets you swear in class.)
Azelia and the New Order: Obviously, Azelia is doted on by her father and she has rewarded his faith and his love by being a doting daughter in almost every respect. That is not to say she obeys her father constantly or unquestionably, but rather, befitting a woman of her great intelligence, she tends to act in his interest whether he approves or not. She loves her father dearly and their bond is strong. Due to her beauty, intelligence and high status, she is highly pursued by many a divinity – most notably Noac, though Azelia herself seems uninterested in the pursuit of marriage at the moment. She has friendships with Bagheera and Lilac and gets along well with her many brothers and sisters. She also has a friendly relationship with Erebus, which her father disapproves of. She has a difficult relationship with Zethina, a woman who she works closely with and whom she actively hates.
Finally, she has a complicated rivalry with Bethany, as they are both princesses of heaven, are rivals in intelligence and have similar domains. Azelia believes that Bethany is ungrateful for her status and does not act as someone should in her position should, while Bethany thinks Azelia needs to loosen the hell up. Azelia is a gifted craftsman, especially at weaving and fabrics, and has technical mastery. However, Bethany is undoubtedly superior and says that Azelia lacks the passion and creativity that would turn her from a craftsman into an artist. Bethany famously stated that Azelia had ‘never met an instruction manual she didn’t worship,’ and Azelia responded by saying ‘just because there’s paint on a canvas, doesn’t make it art.’
Azelia and the Races of Second Earth: Humans are the most devout in their worship of Azelia and she actively favors them, much like her father does. Due to her influence, humans prize knowledge and education to a significant degree, especially the upper classes. She stated that good leaders must know as much as they can about as much as they can – most Anzoite nations follow this creed and expect nobles, and especially royals, to be incredibly well educated (much like the way that the Levian Empire expects military service out of its rulers and leaders). Shrines are erected to her in schools and universities – in almost all of them, in Anzoite countries. She is also worshipped frequently by the nobility in those places who see her as Anzo’s proof that he approves of their highborn status even though he espouses equality for all men.
Like Anzo, Azelia falters in worship to the other races of the world, though she has achieved more here than her father has. Dwarves have a lot of respect for Azelia and her focus on technical expertise and while she is not actively worshipped in many places in the Empire (though Deluge Gate is known for having a large shrine to her in its grand library), she is certainly spoken of with fondness, not scorn, by most dwarves. Since wizardry is a key part of her domain, she also receives prayers from wizards of all races. Along with the rest of the Arcane Trinity, she represents, and sometimes she receives prayers for, brilliance or mastery of a craft – Azelia represents learned mastery, those who have achieved it through hard work; Elisabet represents though who were prodigies and born masters of the craft; while Zethina represents those who were forced into their mastery, or had it thrust upon them due to circumstance.
Azelia, Goddess of Wizardry:
“Our Lady Azelia teaches us that magic is a not a force of nature or a gift from the gods, but a study, a craft. You have worked hard. You have given up years of life in order to graduate from this prestigious institution and there is one thing you must remember as you move on to wherever your new life may be: you are not masters of magic because you were chosen; you are masters of magic because you chose to be.” – excerpt from a graduation address at the Coralla Academy of Magecraft
By the time she had finished her mortal life, Azelia had mastered all forms of arcane magic. She also holds office as the head of the Ordered Magic Department in the Bureau of Seasons. As such, wizards, mages, scribes, and other people who rely on magic in their everyday lives worship her extensively, especially when learning new materials and practices. She receives a lot of worship in nations which rely on magic particularly in Coralla and Neflheim. She is also frequently worshipped by the noble classes in many Anzo societies where their status is important like Anzland and Vara.
- The Cornerstone Tome: A simple notebook, carried by Azelia on almost all occasions, where she jots down calculations and notes for the few problems that she cannot solve in her head. It is said that a single page is enough to radically alter the course of human events due to the vast technological and arcane secrets held within each scribble of Azelia’s pen.
(Fast learner: Academics, Medicine, Occult and Politics)
Strength 3XXX, Dexterity 6XXXXXX, Stamina 4XXXX
Charisma 6XXXXXX, Manipulation 5XXXX, Appearance 6XXXXX
Perception 6XXXXXX, Intelligence 10XXXXXXXXXX, Wits 5XXXX
Skills: Academics 10, Animal Ken, Art (Architecture 5, Culinary 5, Engineering 5, Metalsmithing 5, Modern 5, Performance Art 5, Stonework 3, Textiles 3, Visual Art 4, Woodwork 4), Athletics 1, Awareness 2, Brawl, Command 2, Control 1, Empathy 1, Fortitude, Integrity 3, Investigation 5, Larceny 1, Marksmanship 1, Medicine 1, Melee, Occult 2, Politics 2, Presence 1, Stealth 1, Survival, Thrown
Boons: Artistry 10, Guardian 8, Magic 8