Oaths are sworn between men and their kings all the time, but oaths between men and gods are rarer and more binding. Oaths sworn to powerful creatures of the Fey, or to demons and devils can be just as binding. Some examples follow.
Oath of Peace
An oath of peace is one where a powerful creature or king demands that the person swearing the oath will commit no violence against them or any of their servants. There is almost always a time limit to such an oath. Sometimes the time limit can be weeks or months, but other times it may be years or centuries. An oath of peace is central to the story presented in this book.
Oath of Protection
An oath of protection is one in which a powerful individual is sworn to come to the aid of another in a time of great need. One of the most famous of these oaths in mythology is the oath that the Achaean kings swore to Menelaus, husband of Helen. The kings swore to assist Menelaus if anyone ever threatened Helen. When Menelaus called upon the kings to fulfill their oaths, the Trojan War was the result. An oath of protection requires the swearer to answer a call for aid as quickly as possible. Once the threat has been neutralized, the oath is fulfilled, and there is no further obligation. Failure to answer the call, or even allowing the other party to come to harm, will cause the oath giver to be branded an oathbreaker, and they too suffer the curse of the treacherous.
Oath of Service
An oath of service is an oath sworn by one individual to
another. The swearer is required to perform one task,
which does not need to be specified when the oath is
sworn. Unlike the oath of protection, this task could
be of any type: it may even require evil deeds, such as assassination. For this reason, most people are hesistant
to ever swear such an oath, viewing it as a last resort.
When the oath swearer is called upon, they must
answer as quickly as possible. Once the task has been
completed, the oath is fulfilled and there is no further
obligation. Failure to answer the call, or refusal to complete the task, brands the swearer as an oathbreaker and
makes them subject to the curse of the treacherous.