The Gargoyle

Introduction:

In the Third Age of the Reflected Worlds much of humanity had been fooled by The Prophets testimony. He convinced people to seek out what they thought were the Dead Gods, but were actually Demons. One of those groups of people followed a false god named Garos. In their fanatical devotion they used grim and radiant magic to permanently turn themselves into a likeness of their god. They even named themselves Gargoyles in his honor.

Their loyalty to the Demon Lord Garos was unquestioned, and in the name of their 'god' they committed deeds both vile and terrible. This new Gargoyle race forsook their human heritage entirely and gave Gargoylethemselves over to what they perceived as their god.

But not everyone in the Reflected Worlds was fooled by the false gods. Eventually the Enchantress exposed Garos to the Gargoyles for what he was, a demon. She revealed his lies, and showed them the bitter truth. The Gargoyles now knew they had been deceived, and everything they had believed was shown to be false.

Upon discovering their folly, the Gargoyles threw down their false God, and exposed him to the rest of the world as a Demon Lord. Great was their anger when they learned of the deception, and the race united in the fires of truth and redemption. Other human factions still following other Demon Lords derided them for their lack of vision and true faith, and called upon the Gargoyles to cast down their blasphemous ways and return to the worship of the 'true gods'. In their righteous anger the Gargoyles went to war against the civilizations that continued to follow the Demons. The wars raged on for years, and in the end the Gargoyles and their avenging legions swept the various cults from the worlds forever.

Afterwards, they swore an oath of loyalty to the Enchantress and her bloodline until the end of days. When other humans ridiculed them for the look of their bodies, the Enchantress showed compassion and respect. In this time of shaken beliefs, she became their rock, and they learned much from her mentorship of the values of freedom, honor and truth.

Gargoyles can barely tolerate the rule of the Eyes of Darkness, but they are sworn to the female bloodline of the Enchantress, and so they endure, hoping to redeem her as they were once redeemed.

Description:

Gargoyles have hide in place of skin with strange ritualistic patterns. They are hairless, which make them great long distance runners with amazing endurance. But in the cold they stiffen up which makes them move a little slower.

Gargoyles have excellent hearing, and their long pointed ears are quite keen to pick up many sounds that a human might miss. But Gargoyles' red demonic looking eyes are not quite as good as humans. Their bravery is legendary. Their bodies are squat and powerful, which helps them absorb greater impacts when leaping from tall places.

Culture:

Gargoyles on the whole are disciplined, ordered and extremely just in their dealings with one another and outsiders alike. Gargoyles despise liars, half-truths and chaos in all things. Hard work, uncompromising morals (even to the detriment of the gargoyle) and honorable living combine in the Gargoyle way of life to form a balance that carries them through all manner of hardships. Where a human in the face of a battle against superior numbers might try to lie their way out and live, a gargoyle would simple tell his opponents that he plans to take as many of them with him as he can, and he will.

A gargoyle is happiest when hard at work, toiling away on some task, job or quest. They particularly enjoy a military endeavor or honorable duty. To a Gargoyle, laziness and laxity in any form (physical or moral) are the greatest sins short of lying, and must therefore be avoided at all costs. 'A minute wasted is a minute given to the demons.' is a popular Gargoyle saying.

Not content merely to endure hardships, gargoyles often seek hardship wherever they can find it as a test of their strength, morals and integrity. 'No stone can be called hard until it is struck.' is a saying every young Gargoyle memorizes from his or her elders.

Discipline is the single most driving trait of a Gargoyle, and every accomplishment (and even failure) is attributed to discipline (or the lack thereof). A Gargoyle's day is rigidly planned out in almost exacting detail, from the moment he rises until his eyes close for the night.

The Gargoyles greatest art form is called an honor statue. Gargoyles value the honorable deeds of their fallen kin. They do not believe in an afterlife, and so what they do in this life, and how they are remembered is of vital importance. Therefore, gargoyles who are honorable and worthy, whose deeds impress their fellows, and whose deaths were worthy, are granted an honor statue. This is a very life like and utterly accurate stone depiction of the gargoyle to whom they honor and remember. The various objects: weapons, armor, etc, that his gargoyle wore and used in his life now adorn the statue. In fact, gargoyles will go to great lengths to recover the artifacts of any gargoyle granted an honor statue, even at the cost of their lives.

Stone Masonry

Owing to their patience and their understanding of stone, Gargoyles are excellent stonemasons. They create intricate and awe-inspiring works of architecture and sculpture. Gargoyles build and live in great circular castles of stone which have very tall stone spires in the center. Stone spires exist in almost every Gargoyle enclave due to their love of heights. They also offer the military usefulness of a tall watch tower. Finally, these spires act to honor their deceased heroes. High up and set into the spires are niches where gargoyles display the honor statues of their kin who upheld honor and died well, for gargoyles do not fear death, only dishonor.

Many humans have seen the gargoyle honor statues. And it has become a human custom to make gargoyle statures to adorn their own structures, sometimes in the shape of water-spouts, or other decorative depictions. Common legend is that it is good luck, and will drive off grim spirits and demonic possession or influence. This isn't true, but the legend comes from the gargoyles devotion toward their ideals. Most gargoyles considered these statues somewhat disrespectful, though they tolerate them in most cases unless it depicts the Gargoyle doing something indecent or disrespectful.

Thus their skills are often requested by other races, though it is rare and costly to actually get gargoyles to build structures for other races. Special circumstances are usually involved, for the high cost is seldom if ever monetary.

Food and Drink:

Forgoing the more exotic and frivolous foods, Gargoyles are obsessed with a simple, stoic diet of very basic foods. They do not like sweets, and despise foods that are too spicy, aromatic or colorful. Because of this, visitors to Gargoyle feasts are often taken aback at the blandness and dull palette offered by Gargoyle cuisine. The exception to this (unfortunately for their dinner guests) is their fascination with pungent and well-aged cheeses. Gargoyles often make all sorts of 'aromatic' cheeses and store them for years in their cellars to give them the proper 'effervescence'. But, cheese has a peculiar effect on gargoyles, it is like drug, or like alcohol to a human. The more aged and pungent the cheese, the greater the affect when eaten by a Gargoyle. Though they love and cultivate many types of cheese they can only eat small amounts without clouding their mind and judgment. It releases inhibitions and some types of emotions that are kept under control most of their lives.

There are certain occasions where gargoyles find it acceptable to eat a larger quantity of cheese; for example, at the wake of a particularly honored friend who died well. During these occasions when they eat too much cheese gargoyles will break into long and drawn out chanting verses about the deeds of the fallen, or get into friendly fights or challenges to prove their prowess. They will often make stupid vows, to which they are then held accountable by their honor later... like "Kobar was a REAL gargoyle, and I vow to take up the challenge that killed him in his name! I will bring down the false idol of the Weasel Cult or die trying!" Later, when sober, and reminded of this cheese driven vow, the gargoyle will take up his weapons and head out to do exactly what he promised, even though it be suicidal.

Conversely, alcohol has little to no affect on a Gargoyle.

Gargoyles and the Fallen Heroes:

There is a special connection between the Gargoyles of the Fallen Heroes. Normally, Gargoyles would be loath to work with other races, fearing inefficiency and dishonor. But long ago some of the Gargoyles adopted the Enchantress and her Heroes as their family sect. It was the first and only time a human has been the High Commander of a Gargoyle sect. Due to their oath to the Enchantress, her daughter has now inherited the position of High Commander of that sect. It is now comprised of the resurrected Fallen Heroes. So Gargoyles belonging to the Fallen Heroes sect are honor bound to work with the other races who are Fallen Heroes since they are brothers and sisters in arms.

Conclusion:

For hundreds of years now Gargoyles have taken on the role of protectors against falsehoods and deception. They believe in truth and seek out the followers of Demons and those who revel in purely grim acts. And they fear no one.

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