The Unlooked For
Portfolio: Chance, Ill Luck, Misfortune, Insanity
Symbol: Three sticks of bone
Alignment: Chaotic Neutral
Core Worshipers: Humans
Domains: Chaos, Destruction, Liberation* (CD), Luck, Madness* (CD), Oracle* (CD).
Favored Weapon: Quarterstaff
Description: Ralishaz (RAL-ih-shaz) is ever-changing (hideous to beautiful, female to male), but he usually appears as an oddly dressed beggar. He carries nothing but his wooden staff; his holy symbol is three sticks of bone, derived from divination and gambling tools. He rewards or punishes those that rely on chance or take great risks, seemingly at random. He is the god of insanity; many debate whether his appearance and whims are truly random or just madness. He shuns other gods, although he does not seem to be hateful of them. “Order does not exist, only randomness and chance, and the odds are stacked against you. While you may have a good run against the odds, eventually the universe will balance itself out against you. Randomness and insanity go hand in hand, and sometimes those who are the most insane are the ones who are closest to the true nature of the universe. Kindness and prosperity are illusions, as misfortune comes to all sooner or later.” Clerics of Ralishaz are a curious combination of fatalism and recklessness, stoicism and wild endeavor, depending upon how they feel their place is in the world at that moment. They live charmed lives, although when misfortune hits them it hits hard. They preside over places of gambling, although most patrons are unsure if their presence wards off bad luck or draws it. They travel when their divinations indicate they should, or at the roll of a die. They are often mean-minded or cruel, not seeing the point of friendliness to someone who will eventually be cursed by bad luck.
Ralishaz, the Unlooked For, is the Power of chance, ill-luck, and unexpected misfortunes. He is also the patron Power of gamblers and those who take unusual risks. Most often, Ralishaz will not reward the latter, but if he does, the rewards may be great indeed. Most people in the Flanaess see him as the entity responsible for unforeseen events which bring woe more often than weal.
Ralishaz is portrayed in a variety of forms. He usually appears as an ancient and oddly dressed mendicant, sometimes male, sometimes female He may appear as a jester, idiot or dolt, a hideously wrinkled old man, a scabby beggar, or even as a beautiful maid. At still other times he appears in a semblance of his (or her) true form, which is awful to behold. At one moment the deity’s face and body are handsome, the next wrinkled and hideous. During all these shifts, whether the countenance is that of a scabby beggar or beautiful maid, an aura of unease pervades, for Ralishaz’ randomness is palpable and disturbing. He employs only wooden weapons, usually a staff or a club. He is a formidable purveyor of curses and magical aging, and has a gaze that can cause sleep.
Victims of misfortune may try to placate Ralishaz; gamblers invoke him; those in peril beseech him; those planning speculative, high-risk adventures will make offerings to him. His cult has grown somewhat during and after the war. Services to Ralishaz include playing semi-random note sequences on musical instruments, babbling paeans, the casting of augury spells, and wild inter-plays of light and darkness, heat and light, noise and quiet.
Priests of this Power are said to suffer misfortunes only rarely, but when they do, they are grave indeed. The priests tend to alternate between stoicism and wild endeavor. Casting augury spells plays a great role in their lives. They are often mean-minded or deceitful folk.