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Hiatea (pronounced: /hiˈɑːtiə/ hee-AH-tee-uh listen) is the giant deity of nature, agriculture, hunting, females, and children. Her symbol is a flaming spear. She takes the form of a tanned, lithe giantess with long legs, wearing leather armor and carrying a spear that flames on her command, a bow, and a quiver of arrows. Her hair is red-golden, and her large eyes are hazel-brown. She is sometimes said to have used her spear to slay an enormous hydra, preventing its heads from regenerating by cauterizing them with fire. She is strong, confident, and an exceptional hunter. Being from the giant pantheon, Hiatea is actually a titan.
Hiatea has two aspects. From her firbolg upbringing, she has an affinity for community, agriculture, and family. Once she discovered her true patrimony (another myth said it was due to Stronmaus' teasing), she reinvented herself as a mighty hunter and protector.
Hiatea is a daughter of Annam. Her mother was an unnamed sky goddess or, according to some myths, a mortal giant. Annam originally preferred sons over daughters, and used magic to ensure the gender of his offspring was male. Hiatea's mother hid her pregnancy from Annam and had her daughter raised by firbolgs so that Annam would never learn of her existence. When she came of age, a messenger was sent from her mother's deathbed to tell Hiatea of her true parentage. Hiatea proved herself with a series of daring feats, culminating in an epic battle with a great monster, sometimes named as a Lernaean hydra with fifty heads and sometimes as a tarrasque. She brought a trophy of her kill to her father, who recognized her valor and worth, accepting her as one of his own offspring. Upon learning of her existence, her brother Stronmaus celebrated by creating mighty storms that flooded the worlds and washed away great evils.
Because of her patronage of the wood giants, Hiatea she has begun to develop real friendships with some of the elven deities, notably Solonor Thelandira, whom she often engages with in archery contests.
Hiatea is worshipped by giants of all species, especially females. Firbolgs and voadkyn (wood giants) of both genders are particularly fond of Hiatea, and consider her to be their special patron.
Hiatea teaches that Nature is both creator and destroyer, and that admitting defeat is the worst shame a giant can bear. Still, some prices are too high to pay even for victory, for Hiatea is a goddess with tendencies toward good.
Hiatea's priests typically have one of two roles, although the boundary between the two can occasionally be fuzzy. There are the community priests ("priests of the steadings") who tend to agriculture and the raising, protection, and education of children; there are also the protector (or sentinel) priests who patrol woodlands and forests and keeping an eye on other races. Her voadkyn protector priests go out of their way to maintain relations with the wood elves. Among the firbolg, female clerics may be somewhat more numerous than male ones, though males and females are considered of equal merit in all of Hiatea's sects. The highest priests of Hiatea belong to no community, visiting the giant steadings only to issue orders to the priests of the community.
Hiatea communicates frequently with her priests and shamans, sending omens in the form of distinctive shapes in the fires, or in flaming spheres within dying embers. Her community priests may see omens in the dreams of children. She may also send omens in the form of a gigantic (2-foot wingspan) yellow-gold moth that will spiral around flame. Her priests perceive messages in its path of flight. Those who capture the moth alive will be invisible in woodlands for days.
All of Hiatea's clerics must be capable of surviving and hunting in the wilderness. Those who lose this ability due to age, injury, or other ailment must retire.
Hiatea's favored weapon is the spear.
Once a month or so, the community priests accompany the sentinel priests and the faithful on a ceremonial hunt. Once a year, usually in the spring, they select a particularly challenging creature to kill.
Making family decisions without consulting a community priest of Hiatea is considered a minor sin by the faithful.
- ↑ Eric L. Boyd, Erik Mona (May 2002). Faiths and Pantheons. (Wizards of the Coast), p. 221. ISBN 0-7869-2759-3.
- ↑ Carl Sargent (May 1992). Monster Mythology. (TSR, Inc), p. 77. ISBN 1-5607-6362-0.
- ↑ Ray Winninger (August 1995). Giantcraft. (TSR, Inc), p. 49. ISBN 0-7869-0163-2.
- ↑ Colin McComb (1996). On Hallowed Ground. Edited by Ray Vallese. (TSR, Inc), p. 175. ISBN 0-7869-0430-5.
- ↑ Ray Winninger (August 1995). Giantcraft. (TSR, Inc), p. 48. ISBN 0-7869-0163-2.
- ↑ Eric L. Boyd (September 1995). “Forgotten Deities: Grond Peaksmasher”. In Duane Maxwell ed. Polyhedron #111 (TSR, Inc.), p. 4.