Procan is the Oeridian god of Seas, Sea Life, Salt, Sea Weather, and Navigation. The original father and first ruler of the entire Oerdian pantheon, Procan lost interest in his children when they became civilized. He is a sea god, as mercurial as the sea. He is honored as the progenitor of the Oerdian wind gods, lords of life and the common man.
Procan is an ancient, primal god. He is stormy and impulsive, prone to fits of temper, and is ever greedy for treasure, hoarding that which falls to the sea bed and jealous of the pearls and wonders of his own domain. He's an elder god, almost like a titan, though he roams the cosmos freely.
Procan is revered by many sailors, as well as by those who earn their living from the sea. Few venture out to the seas without saying a prayer and making an offering before embarking.
Usually revered for his aquatic powers, some island island communities worship him, however, as god of the sky. In this case, its symbol is often a pair of embers eyes in a cloud from which lightning gushes out.
Some sentient aquatic creatures, such as merfolk, may also worship Procan.
ClergyClerics love the seas and the oceans above all else; They love the feel and taste of salty air; they love hearing the ropes crack and the sails flap in the wind; they love to feel the roll of the ship and the ferocious and chaotic joy of a storm at sea.
Clerics of Procan avoid complexities in life and usually live on or near the sea, attending to those who earn their livelihood from the seas (sailors, fishermen). They are considered good luck on sea voyages, and are often hired by captains. Priests can become sea explorers, pirates, privateers, or chaplains on a merchant ship or a warship. They can explore the ocean depths, hunt sahuagins or become an ambassador to intelligent sea creatures. They may be leaders or enemies of pirates.
Priests can also exercise a whole lot of activities on land, especially when he has to answer the call of adventure. However, traveling too far inland is a sin, and the priest must try to stay as close to the sea as possible.
A priest is free to associate with any creature. He can act for good or bad, as long as he respects the basic tenants of the faith.
Procan's priest's holy water is made from salt water, but their create water cantrips may call either fresh or salt water into being.
VestmentsDuring ceremonies, priests of Procan typically wear an iridescent robe made up of multiple layers of green, blue and black. In ordinary times, they typically dress in a blue belted tunic and a short green skirt. If it is cold, they wear a large blue-green tunic with long sleeves. In all cases, the tunic has the Procan symbol embroidered in gold on the chest.
TemplesAny port city will have at least a small shrine to Procan. Temples are always built with a view to the sea. They are large structures whose central point is a gigantic empty throne. Indeed, an avatar of Procan must be able to enter the temple and sit comfortably in the throne. An altar made of a single block of jade (sometimes weighing several tons) and a deep pool of sea water are still at the feet of the throne. The temples are decorated with numerous bas-reliefs representing sea creatures.
HierarchyDue to the church's chaotic nature and its large number of members, the clergy of Procan are made up of cells (on the scale of a city, region or state) loosely linked together. These cells can ignore each other, work together or oppose depending on the circumstances. A priest can move from cell to cell without difficulty, and an enemy priest one day can become a friend the next. Such practices may be shocking, but they are considered acceptable within this eccentric clergy.
It is entirely possible that two Procan clergy cells may be in conflict if they belong to enemy nations, or work with competing merchant guilds or rival pirate gangs. A Procan priest, a member of a pirate crew, will have little qualms about killing another priest of his clergy who serves as chaplain aboard an honest merchant ship.
However, despite its chaotic nature, the clergy of Procan are very organized at the local level. Novice priests are instructed in the different rites and must devote themselves entirely to the functioning of the temple. Strict respect for hierarchy is a difficult task for most of these priests of neutral chaotic alignment and is in fact a test of their faith.
Before being initiated as a full priest (level 4), the novice must then leave to preach along the different sea routes and propagate their faith. They are also free to exercise a profession of their choice in parallel with their evangelical mission.
After years of service at seas and dedication to the faith (level 10), the priest must then answer for their actions — they have the obligation to appear before one of the high priests of the cult. It will then be decided if they should go back to the seas, erect a new temple or have a place can be offered to them within the hierarchy of an existing temple. It may also be decided to condemn them if they have harmed the faith in some way. A serious offense, such as a deliberate change of alignment, will be punished by death by ossification — The offending priest is immersed in a barrel filled with salt water and then placed in the oven until all of his flesh is detached from his bones. The skeleton is then buried in the crypt of the temple.
RitualsProcan's services are held on or close to the sea. Gold or pearls are cast into the waters as offerings to the deity, fish and bread are eaten, and the priests pray for the safety at sea.
The Rite of the Swarming: This annual ceremony marks the start of the fishing season. It is led by a high priest who, after a service at the temple, leads a procession of all available priests to the water's edge. Each priest carries an ewer, filled with holy water during the service, the contents of which he pours into the sea. Inevitably, the water begins to swarm with fish — so much that it seems to boil. When all the ewers are emptied, an offering is made to the sea. If the fishing of the previous year was good, a portion of fish and bread are thrown into the water. If the previous year's fishery was poor, the sacrifice of a warm-blooded animal is necessary.
The Rite of the Procan Walk: This is a grand ceremony which is to be held monthly in each temple. Followers of the faith do not fail to participate because they think that not doing so will result in bad luck at sea until the next ceremony; this bad fortune only amplifying for each ceremony missed.
During the ceremony, a priest is chosen at random to embody Procan springing from the waves, while his peers, dressed in elaborate costumes, play the role of his court. This tumultuous ceremony is essentially made up of music and dance, and ends with a great seafood feast. It is said that Procan can appear during this Rite, in order to express his satisfaction or, on the contrary, his wrath.
The Black Rite: The Black Rite is a secret ceremony intended to accomplish a terrible revenge against the crew of a ship, or an entire community, who seriously offended the cult.
First, a member of the crew or the community is kidnapped. This person will then be suspended above the basin in front of the altar, then bled slowly by the high priest of the temple with the edge of a seashell, while the other priests sing psalms.
Before all life has left the victim, the ties are cut and they fall into the basin. If he drowns, it is a sign that Procan accepts the offering and that it will release its anger on the rest of the crew or the community (by causing a storm, a tidal wave or by calling a monster from the depths). If the victim survives, it is a sign that he is innocent of the charges against him or that Procan considers that the offense is not serious enough to provoke his wrath.
The seas and skies are ever-changing and unpredictable. The waters that blanket the earth are deep and unknowable, and their waves can pull down any ship not guided by Procan. He must be honored so that one can avoid his fury in the greatest storms and reap the bounties of the deep blue waters. Life came from the sea and to the sea all life will return.
Procan is portrayed as a muscular man with blue-green skin and hair. His eyes are golden, glinting like sunken treasure. He carries a large spear dripping with seaweed.
Procan is the father of the Oeridian wind gods (Atroa, Sotillion, Telchur, and Wenta) and the sky-god Velnius. Procan usually ignores other gods, save for fellow sea-deities such as Osprem and Xerbo. He is said to have aided in the banishment of Panzuriel.