This article is about the worship of Fortia , for information about the Deity see Fortia.
Fortia is the almighty Goddess of Fire and Love in the Realms Pantheon. She is associated with all manner of love, whether romantic, sexual, platonic, or familial, as well as both the fires that light the way and those that destroy.
"Fortia embodies the gentle flame which warms and protects, and the fury of a
raging fire. She embodies wild throws of passion and the tenderness of a
loving embrace. She is the reminder of the unpredictable nature of that
which we need to survive. Beautiful and yet with the potential to be
Those that worship Fortia draw on her in the hope that the fires of love never dwindle, that their homes are kept warm and safe, and that their enemies might burn. Worship of Fortia is very popular as the faith accommodates a wide array of lifestyles, whether that involves settling down in marriage, having wild and passionate flings, or simply having a bond with one's community, friends, and family.
Clerics and Priests
Priestesses of Fortia are as varied in their lifestyles as their worshippers, pursuing love and sex as they wish to, whether monogamous or not, committed or not. Clergy are much the same and no judgement falls upon anyone so long as everyone involved is enjoying themselves. Outside of this their duties mostly consist of lighting and maintaining fires to the goddess both in the temple and in the homes of those seeking her blessing, as well as conducted marriage ceremonies. The position of High Priestess is currently held by Vesta.
Temples to Fortia are warm, open and often impressive buildings each with The Eternal Flame, a fire with no need for fuel, burning at its heart. Regardless of whether someone is dedicated to her or not, many choose to be married in ceremony here in the sight of Fortia. The High Temple of Fortia can be found in Eribourne.
Followers of Fortia believe that love and compassion should be given freely to those who deserve it, and that that love is sacred and should be celebrated and nurtured so that it may never go out. They believe that love of any kind, so long as everyone involved feels the same, is never wrong and that romantic love shares the same importance as love of any other kind, such as that for a friend, family, or a community.
Freedom is at the heart of the faith, supporting people to love as they wish to. For some this may mean marriage and/or monogamy, for others it may mean polygamy, open relationships, sexual or non-sexual relationships, a string of passionate flings, or purely platonic relationships. So long as everyone in the relationship is happy and consenting, it is seen as holding equal importance to any other.
Fire represents may things within the faith, a flame to light the way, to keep us safe and warm, or with which to burn or destroy one's enemies. For some the latter is symbolic, speaking of how we should not give love to those who do not deserve it, to burn those bridges, and cut those people out of your life. For others the interpretation is quite literal, encouraging the literal burning of those who would harm us or those who are enemies of Fortia.
Firewax is dedicated to Fortia, with dedicated followers and pantheon followers
alike leaving more offerings to Fortia throughout the month. At the
mid-point of Firewax lies Fortia's Holy Day, The Day of Love, a celebration of passion and all kinds of love. During the day, small gifts, traditionally candles or small trinkets they feel they will appreciate, are given or sent to those they love, often with small cards telling them how much they mean to them, whether signed or unsigned. At night great fires are lit and danced around, with different coloured ribbons often worn to signal what kind of relationship the wearer is seeking. Pink = romantic, Red = sexual, Orange = platonic/non-sexual, Yellow = committed, and Blue = casual. Sometimes gifts given too will incorporate one or more of these colours in order to convey their intentions to the recipient.
Offerings - traditionally candles or fires are lit in prayer and offering to Fortia, though flowers, meaningful trinkets, and messages of love are often left too.
Marriage - Traditionally in wedding ceremony, couples would step through the flames of the Eternal Flame, emerging unscathed if their love was true. This practice is more commonly performed as passing their hands through a flame in recent times, although the old tradition is starting to make a resurgence.
Funeral Rites - Followers of Fortia upon death have their bodies purified by fire, burned on large funeral pyres often lit by the Eternal Flame or simply cremated in the Eternal Flame itself. Some choose to scatter their ashes, or have them buried somewhere, whilst others have their ashes contained in small heart shaped necklaces that are given to their loved ones.
Those dedicated to Fortia's worship believe that when they die they shall enter The Molten Hearth,
where they are reunited with their loved ones and can spend an eternity with them in safety, it is said that a feeling of being cherished and loved pervades thoughout the realm.