Ephilroa, Plane of the Dead

Ephilroa, occasionally referred to as "The Underworld" is the plane of the dead. It is ruled over by Streike, deity of death, and is filled with all the souls of those who have died, and the evil formations of chaotic thoughts that are better known as "demons" and "fiends".

The underworld's gates open upon a massive library, which is filled with books that tell of the lives of the dead, and in fact, [i]are[/i] the lives of the dead. In the past, spirits could roam Ephilroa as they awaited judgement, but with more souls populating Fortuna, and more dying every day, the foyer became too crowded, and so Kutsal, God of the Written word, along with Sema Isi, Goddess of Patience, offered a gift to Streike in the form of this library. With their powers combined, souls live in a state of memory until they can be judged. In the minds of these souls, they are in a dream, reliving their best and worst memories. This allows them the patience and meditation to not only await their trial, but to remind themselves of the good and bad that they have accomplished.

Beyond that room, are the judges. When they are prepared for a new soul, they send a servant to retrieve a book from the library. Upon entering the judges' chamber, the soul returns to some level of physical appearance, and stands before their judge. The judge will ask questions, will look into the soul's actions - good and bad - and weigh them against one another. Should they find the soul to be Evil, it will be sent to labour and torment, where it may choose to work for redemption. If the soul is found to be Good, it is sent to one of many calming afterlives.

A soul determined to be evil may appeal just once, asking for a second judgement. If the second judge agrees that the soul is evil, it receives a punishment worse than death, worse that eternal punishment - it is completely destroyed, along with every legacy it left behind, with no opportunity for redemption. If the judge disagrees, the soul is sent to meet with Libress, who rips the heart from the soul and weighs it upon her scale.

There is one exception to all of this - which are Young souls. Young souls are seen as pitious, but still full of potential. They are offered a chance at proving they should receive an additional chance at life, and if they succeed in their case, they will be reincarnated.

People

Ephilroa is populated with all the souls of the departed, who suffer forever in tormet, live their existences out in peace, or are preparing their return to the material world.

In addition to the dead, Ephilroa is home to demons, and fiends. These creatures seek to corrupt mortal souls, and wish to explore the material world in search of chaos and evil.

The most notable figures in Ephilroa are Streike, deity of Death; Diassei, deity of Wealth, who is forever trapped here; and Streike's five judges, detailed below.

Storylines

There are currently no active or completed storylines set in this location.

The Judges

Annabelle, The Suffered Child

Annabelle appears as a little girl, not yet five years old. She had been killed by a natural disaster, and was offered a second chance at life by the judges. She refused, however, having lived her first life under the hand of abuse, and too afraid to try again. The small child was permitted to eternal bliss instead, but she often wandered the chambers of the judges. They began to notice her intuition towards spirits, how she could tell on instinct the energy they hid. When Diassei killed the judges of the Underworld, Libress chose Annabelle as a replacement.

Annabelle is said to be the judge least likely to hear one's pleas, or listen to one's reasons. She judges one's actions, and the energy of sin that surrounds the souls she meets.

Bowain, the Tattered Soldier

Bowain's appearance is striking, and often causes discomfort or fear in the souls that meet him. He is missing each of his limbs, and his eyes, yet sits ever calmly, ever... Watching. Bowain was a soldier in a war long lost to history, and was the only member of Streike's judges of mortals who was not destroyed by Diassei.

In life, Bowain soldiered under the instruction of a domineering warlord, and harmed many. However, when instructed to kill an innocent, he faltered, and the warlord saw this as an act of treason against him - and ordered for Bowain to kill the innocent, or lose a leg. Bowain chose not to kill, and the walord commanded his men to remove one of Bowain's legs. After letting the wound set and heal, the warlord brought another innocent before Bowain, commanding him to kill the innocent, or lose his other leg. Bowain refused, and this continued until her was left without legs, without eyes, without a tongue, and finally, without his arms. When the last arm was taken, the warlord killed Bowain in disgust, leaving his body to rot in a swamp.

Bowain is a fair judge, who is said to base his judgements upon the number of fellow beings the soul has helped, versus the number they had hurt, not wishing to take any other information into consideration. This has lead to many political leaders and kings being judged by Bowain to be sentenced to punishment, as they call for wars that lead to many deaths.

Lysandre, the Bard of Legacy

Lysandre is one of the most jovial figures in the Underworld, with a bright smile, and an instrument ever in his hand. As he judges, he listens carefully while playing, and often finishes his judgement with a song about his assigned soul's most impressive feat. It is this most impressive feat that Lysandre takes into account when judging, believing that it is only a mortal's greatest act that can define their lives - with everything else being peanuts in comparison.

Lysandre is most popular with political leaders, warlords - those who did many sinful things in the hopes of creating something good to leave behind; and is also popular with parents of those who have achieved good things, believing that their child is enough to permit them into bliss.

Ventus, the Devout Listener

Ventus lived his life in service to Veira, a quality that would normally preclude him from becoming a judge of the dead, Streike preferring her judges to lack the prejudices of worship. However, Ventus was a special case. He lived his life with a strong belief in charity, in chances, in helping others. And in fact, he taught much to the deity Veira herself, and after his death she begged Streike not to take him. Streike could not aid her sister in that way, but noticed she was quite right about Ventus, and the person he had proven himself to be. She made him one of her judges, believing that his empathy would be a balance to her other envoys.

Ventus is believed to be the first choice of judge for any soul with questionable actions, for he is always open to listening to the tales of intent behind those actions. He is fair, and he is just, and does not wish to punish a soul for the suffering they experienced in life.

Zalsadiava, the Charred Druid

Zalsadiava lived her life in service to nature, travelling the world to protect it, help it grow, and to connect with it. When all was said and done, she had the thanks not only of the beasts she met along the way, but of the many forests she left as her legacy. She died at the hands of a Dirysian coal magnate, who wished to stop her from preventing their expansion. He burned her alive along with the mountain forest she had been trying to protect.

Zalsadiava never quite connected with mortals the same way she connected with beasts and plants, and so she was assigned initially as a judge merely of those souls. When Diassei came to destroy the judges, Zalsadiava was far away, not considered one of the judges of mortal souls, instead relegated to a land of beasts. In the aftermath, however, Libress and Streike were desperate for judges, and so pulled her to become one of the five judges.

Zalsadiava is very interested in the mark a soul left upon the world, and how they treated those below them. Those who have lived purely good lives are sure to have no problems with Zalsadiava, but she is not afraid to express her anger at those who did far too much damage to Fortuna's natural splendor to ever forgive.