The Laughing Rogue, Prince of Bards, The Merry-Eyed Trickster
Lesser Power of the Heroic Domains of Ysgard
Symbol: Laughing mask
Home Plane: Ysgard/Gladsheim (Den of Olidammara or Winesong)
Alignment: Chaotic neutral
Portfolio: Music, Revelry, Roguery, Tricks/Jokes, Wine/Spirits
Allies: Lydia, Lirr, Myhriss
Core Worshipers: Humans, Oeridians
Worshipers: Rogues, bards, actors, vintners
Worshipers’ Alignment: NG, CG, N, CN
Domains: Celerity* (CD), Chaos, City* (RoD), Luck, Mind* (CD), Trickery.
Favored Weapon: Swiftstrike (+5 chaotic keen speed rapier)
Description: Olidammara (oh-lih-dam-MAH-rah) is a deity of light-hearted revelry and celebration, and enjoys few things more than a good joke and a bottle of wine. He loves upsetting those who are too attached to their boring and controlled worlds and takes enjoyment in providing a respite to the common man in dark times. He is shown as a brown-haired man of rakish appearance, olive skin, and merry eyes, although his magic laughing mask (and holy symbol) allows him to change his appearance. Zagyg once forced him into the shape of a small carapaced animal and imprisoned him; the Laughing Rogue still retains the ability to form a protective carapace, and he has used it to thwart many aggressors and pursuers. He is friendly enough with other gods, although the lawful ones resent his capriciousness and tricks.
Olidammara loves upsetting anyone who seems too attached to an ordered life and a predictable routine. He urges his followers to bend every effort toward mastering the art of music. He also teaches that life is meant to be happy and entertaining, and the best jokes need a target to hang them on. The tables can turn on any trickster, and Olidammara’s followers should accept the laugh and appreciate the trick when it happens to them.
“Treat music as the art it is. Strive to be as skilled at it as your patron. Life is meant to be happy and entertaining, and the best jokes need a target to hang them on; when it is your turn, accept the laugh and appreciate the trick. Wine is one of the joys of life, and the only thing better than making wine is drinking it. Avoid misery, temperance, and solemnity, for they are the greatest poisons to the soul.”
Olidammara delights in wine, women, and song. He is a vagabond, a prankster, and a master of disguise. His temples are few, but many people are willing to raise a glass in his honor. Religious depictions of The Laughing Rogue often hide the face of the Prince of Bards, concealing his visage in a hood or behind his holy symbol, a laughing mask.
Clergy and Temples
Throughout the Flanaess, from rustic hostels and small shrines to city temples, wherever people enjoy drinking and carousing, the clergy of Olidammara find a niche. Olidammara’s religion is loosely organized, but his clerics are numerous. They usually work among urban folk or wander the countryside. Olidammara’s clerics often have a second occupation, such as minstrels, brewers, or jacks-of-all-trades. Thus, they can be found almost anywhere doing or wearing anything.
Clerics of Olidammara study music, make wine, tell jokes, and occasionally perform acts of mayhem. Those who live in cities tend to work as entertainers or vintners, while those who prefer rural settings act are storytellers, messengers, and minstrels. Many of them live a life on the run from powerful people whom they greatly offended early in their careers. Others just enjoy traveling in search of new music, exotic wines, and celebrations.
Cleric Training: Becoming a cleric of Olidammara seems easy enough to an outsider – it looks like one celebration and escapade after another. But would-be clerics are being keenly observed even in their least sober moments as more senior followers of the Laughing God look for the right mixture of joy, whimsy, and mischief.
Quests: Missions that steal from the rich or embarrass the mighty are the headiest wine of all. Followers of OIidammara might engage in intrigues at the Duke’s masquerade ball, steal offerings from the temple of a rival deity, or rescue a world-spanning thief from a prison on the plane of Pandemonium.
Prayers: Olidammara’s prayers are more often sung than spoken, and they almost always rhyme. There are very few established liturgies, because Olidammara’s worshipers are expected to freestyle-rhyme praises to their deity.
Temples: Simple shrines to Olidammara are common in concert halls and public houses. However, the larger temples are hidden (often in the city’s sewer network), because they double as a hideout for thieves. Those who know where a temple to Olidammara is can buy or sell all sorts of stolen or forbidden goods there.
Rites: Olidammara’s rites range from the simple (the Ceremony of the Cork, practiced when a particularly good bottle of wine is opened) to the elaborate (New Moon Follies, a three-act comedy performed by and for Olidammara worshipers). Most feature alcohol, song, and laughter.
Temples dedicated solely to Olidammara are few. But as his followers say, there is a temple of Olidammara anywhere there is wine, song, and laughter, Most formal temples of Olidammara are hidden, because they usually double as hideouts for thieves. Many drinking establishments include at least small shrines to Olidammara.
He also Olidammara has some devout worshippers, but these are vastly exceeded by the number of people who are less dedicated to exclusive worship of the Prince of Bards.
Relationships: Olidammara’s only enmity is with Zagyg, stemming from his imprisonment sometime in the 5th century C.Y. by the Mad Archmage. The Laughing Rogue has exacted his revenge on at least one occasion, and now considers his relations with Boccob’s servitor one of an amusing diversion. Olidammara avoids making enemies, though like most trickster deities, he annoys many of his fellow pantheon members. He is on good relations with both Lydia and Lirr, as all three are patrons of bards, and has a healthy rivalry with Norebo, as the two often compete for worshippers among thieves. He is on very good terms with Myhriss, the Maid of Light and Dark, and the stories say he often keeps her company.
Herald and Allies: A 24-HD death slaad is Olidammara’s herald, although it rarely takes its true form. Allies are janni genies, gray slaads, and death slaads.
Relics: Pipes of amorous revelry, rapier of desperate measures