Istensia

Light can be found even in the darkest of places. Hope never dies for those who have faith that a new day will dawn. So says Istensia, the Lady of the Morn whose respledence fills her followers with the promise of renewal. Istensia appears as a beautiful, glowing maiden with golden hair and white robes.

History/Relationships

Istensia predates the Ascendant Age by several centuries, leading most to conclude that the immortal herself is Ageless. In Drakeric, the word “istensin” literally means dawn or morning light, suggesting that Istensia’s influence may be as prevalent and pervasive as the sunrise itself. There are, however, no accounts of Istensia assuming mortal form, so little can be concluded about her origins.

The worship of Istensia has changed over the ages, but never quite so dramatically as just prior to the Shattering. According to historical accounts, a devout Handmaiden of Light named Cassandra Soleil banished Etejeril’s avatar from the continent of Varalon. This caused a schism in the orthodox church leading to the formation of a militant sect known as the Lightbringers.  The more traditional Handmaidens of Light view the Lightbringers' methods as heavy handed and dangerous. The two factions have been at odds since the split, with many flocking to the side of the modern-day saint.

Istensia is said to be the sister of Antasia, and the two are supposedly allied. As a bastion of hope to the masses, she is also friendly with Lemesin. Followers of Istensia are frequently found in areas controlled by Ressik, and the two coexist uneasily. The Immortal to whom Istensia is most directly opposed is Etejeril, and it is said that the two have been warring since the beginning of time.

Dogma

Light is hope. Look to the dawn each day for the blessing of renewal. Guide those who dwell in darkness that they might see the light once more. Be ever generous to those in need, that they may pass your good will on to others. Nurture the light of life should it falter.

Followers and Temples

Followers of Istensia are divided into two sects. The oldest, known as the Handmaidens of the Light, are composed entirely of women. These followers favor a more traditional, pacifistic ideology and dress in simple yellow robes. Handmaidens are revered as accomplished healers.

The newer sect, known as the Lightbringers, is comprised of both men and women. They demonstrate their militant convictions by adorning themselves in well-polished armor and white tabards bearing the crest of the sun. Lightbringers are well-known as scourges of the undead.

Temples of Istensia are almost always constructed in populous areas and typically face eastward. Services occur regularly at dawn or early morning. All are generally welcomed for guidance, sanctuary, or healing.