The Smoking Mirror
Greater Power of a parallel Prime Material Plane
Symbol: A jaguar
Home Plane: a parallel Prime Material Plane
Alignment: Chaotic evil (NE)
Portfolio: Lightning, Mischief, Sun, Moon, Night, Scheming, Betrayals
Core Worshipers: Olman
Domains: Air, Chaos, Evil, Mysticism* (CD), Sun, Trickery, War, Weather* (CD).
Favored Weapon: (+1 shock longsword)
Description: Tezcatlipoca is another dual-aspect Olman god, ruling over the sun as well as its absence. He and Quetzalcoatl are rivals, and the servants of the jaguar-god never support those of the feathered serpent. He spreads disorder and war, and taught the Olman that wealth equals power. Like the priests of Quetzalcoatl, Tezcatlipoca’s priests are politically active, although they tend to use underhanded methods if straightforward actions are ineffective. His priests sacrifice to him to bring gentle sunlight to crops and parching heat to the crops of their enemies. Every year, they pamper a perfect young male from midsummer to midsummer before sacrificing his heart to their god. They also encourage war with other cities. Ceremonial garb includes a jeweled helm and kilt of golden feathers. In parts of the Amedio Jungle, he is worshipped as a god of the moon and lightning; there he is known as Apocatequil.
Tezcatlipoca (whose name means “the smoking mirror”) is the Olman god of the Sun, Moon, Night, Scheming, and Betrayals. He spreads disorder and war, but he is also the origin of wealth. He personifies the harmful and destructive forces of nature, and is also the patron of sinful pleasures and arcane magic. He is also the vessel by which people gain absolution from their sins. His symbol is a jaguar.
As Apocatequil, he is the god of lightning and the moon (specifically, the moon Celene, which is named for Apocatequil in the Olman tongue).
Tezcatlipoca rarely takes on a physical form, preferring to remain invisible and ethereal. When he does assume a material body, he customarily appears as a giant jaguar or bear. He may also appear as a one-footed man with a round obsidian mirror instead of a foot. He is depicted as black-skinned with a yellow-striped face. He will occasionally assume a more human-looking form in order to masquerade as someone else.
Relationships: Tezcatlipoca is Quetzalcoatl’s rival, and the servants of the two deities never cooperate. Heironeous also considers himself to be Tezcatlipoca’s enemy. Tecatlipoca’s sister is Tlazoteotl, who helped him overthrow Quetzalcoatl.
Dogma: Tezcatlipoca encourages people to escape the bonds places on them by society and fate. His followers push the boundaries of ethics and morality, and seek to change their fate by force of will.
Worshipers: Tezcatlipoca is worshiped in Hepmonaland and the Amedio Jungle by Olman warriors, thieves, witches, and farmers. The lowly worship him to escape their burdens, as do the ambitious. His followers might never know when the quest they’re undergoing is part of their god’s greater plan or merely a random act of destruction, but typically they are tasked with doing things like embarrassing respected rulers, stealing powerful magic, or playing deadly tricks on entire villages.
Tezcatlipoca’s herald is a 20th level sorcerer. His allies include howlers, and glabrezu and nalfeshnee demons.
Clergy: Clerics of Tezcatlipoca wear ash-gray clothing with jeweled helms and feathered cloaks. They are politically active and prone to underhanded methods. They encourage war on other cities. Many are sent to spy on clerics of Quetzalcoatl. Like those of other Olman gods, Tezcatlipoca’s clerics refrain from regular bathing, and dried blood and filth cake them as a result of their rituals. Tezcatlipoca is a patron of diviners, and his clerics train in a number of traditional divining methods. Some take levels in wizard or sorcerer, and often specialize as diviners or illusionists.
Priests of Tezcatlipoca must choose a direction to pray to at the beginning of their careers. Clerics of the east wear red, clerics of the south wear yellow, clerics of the west wear black, and clerics of the north wear white.
Tezcatlipoca is very stern toward his priests, tolerating no errors or shortcomings. Those who transgress against him may be denied spells and visited by thieves who serve their god.
Temples: Olman temples are usually step pyramids with entrances at the bottom corresponding to the four points of a compass. Tezcatlipoca’s holy places may contain magical mirrors (as the one in Tamoachan does). Carvings of jaguars feature prominently.
Rituals: Tezcatlipoca is given sacrifices in the hope of bringing gentle sunlight to their crops and parching heat to the crops grown by enemies of the tribe. Every year, priests of Tezcatlipoca pamper a perfect human male before ripping his heart out. The public is required to attend these rituals, held at Tezcatlipoca’s temples.
Many pray to Tezcatlipoca in order to seek absolution for their sins or to be reprieved from divinely-inspired misfortune. Others call on their god to bend the rules, to aspire to higher social castes or learn new arcane spells.
Participants in Tezcatlipoca’s rituals often perform acts of debauchery as a form of catharsis.
Holy days: Deities & Demigods,1980 said that Tezcatlipoca’s holy day was the Spring Equinox, while The Scarlet Brotherhood, 1999 implied that the day of Tezcatlipoca’s human sacrifice was the Summer Solstice.