Oriat Iapedes, or Oriat Iapeth, is a chthonic deity of decay in the Mesocosmic pantheon. In traditional lore, it is Oriat's duty to promote the cycle of rot in corpses and spoiled crops.
When portrayed as human, Oriat is most often depicted as a thin, tall man, with long white hair. His skin is very pale and ashy, and he is shown with deep-set eyes, full lips, and a prominent, scarred nose. He dresses monochromatically and is usually shown with a cat skull mask.
In more monstrous forms, his body is shown as more grotesque -- bonier, ganglier, and sometimes hunched -- and is covered by a heavy black cloak. In these forms, his head itself is usually replaced by the skull of a cat, and he is seen as a walking corpse, in varying states of decay. Often plants or fungi are seen growing from his skin, or large swaths of skin and flesh have rotted away, exposing bone and viscera.
In many depictions, but not all, he is shown with the horns of a bull in addition to a cat's skull.
Along with decay, Oriat is also known as a god of death, and the pleasures associated with it. Among these pleasures are sex, food, alcohol, and revelry. Worship of the deity is often performed through festivals or private celebrations.
The main festival day for Oriat Iapedes takes place on the first day of autumn, which in the Mesocosmic calander falls on the 14th of September. This is considered to be both the day that the fruits of summer begin to rot, and the day that animals and humans begin to prepare for winter. This festival is usually characterized by:
- Fruit harvests
- Invocation of Oriat and other deities
- Libation to Oriat and other deities
- Reorganization of the home
Other celebrations take place from late summer to early winter, usually during the waning phases of the moon. These are often more private affairs, and are characterized as well by hearty meals, heavy drinking, and sexual activity.
Most frequently, offerings consist of food waste or spoiled crops. However, other traditional offerings to the deity include:
- Hard liquor
- Red meats
- Stone fruits (e.g. peaches, plums)
Some worshipers opt to perform devotional acts in addition to, or in the place of, consumable offerings, such as:
- Burning incense
- Lighting candles
- Prayer and meditation
- Revelrous gatherings and parties
- Sex and/or orgasm
- Temple upkeep
As a god of decay, Oriat is additionally associated with death and funerary rites. He is associated strongly with dirt and the elements of earth and air. Late summer, all of autumn, and early winter are associated with him, as they are the "death" of the year, and waning phases of the moon are times of devotion as well.
He is known to be associated with scavenging animals, especially wild cats, as well as many types of insects (such as worms and beetles). Stone, clay, lead, bronze, pyrite, and yew are the materials most associated with him, and are thus often used in traditional art.
Mesocosmic Pantheon Edit
In his natural plane, the Mesocosm, Oriat has connections to several other gods, especially gods of death, within his pantheon -- as well as his mortal following.
- Achaios - A friend, desert trickster god of natural disasters.
- Hebat - Oriat's twin sibling, a god of sex and death.
- Miran - An ally and a close friend of Achaios, blind deity of travelers and the undead.
Hellenic Pantheon Edit
Being relatives, many of the gods in the Mesocosmic pantheon have personal connections to the Greek gods on Earth.
- Haides - A teacher and ally. Oriat sometimes resides in the Underworld ruled by Haides, which is shared between the Earth and the Mesocosm, as well as other planes.
- Iapetos - Oriat's divine father, currently imprisoned in Tartaros, the titan god of mortality. Father also to Prometheus, Epimetheus, and Atlas, making these gods brothers of Oriat and Hebat.
- Minadea - One of Haides' youngest children, arranged to marry Oriat.
- Thanatos - Personification of the concept of Death, and thus the deity to whom Oriat answers.
- Rhumik - A mortal Mesocosmic priest in the Besan temple in Tsur, favored by Oriat.