God of Battle and Storms
Favored Weapon: Greataxe, Light Warhammer
Gromm the Thundergod
Of all the war gods, tempestuous Gromm is the most often appealed to by warriors. Son of Athor and Marya, father to Kath, Kern, Mishya, and Brandt, Gromm is a powerful, brooding god who rewards audacity and has no use for cowards. He is often depicted as a bare-chested dwarf in a kilt, hair and beard crackling with lightning, though other cultures think of him as a Storm Giant. Gromm does not judge tactics or codes of behavior among his followers. He loves battle for battle's sake, and often blesses brave warriors far beyond what he gives the less audacious faithful.
Gromm hates walls, and believes that true warriors do not fight from behind defenses. As such, he is the patron of siegecraft, blessing those machines and magics which shatter defenses and bring low great castles.
Love of battle causes Gromm and his followers to see little point in finding a peaceful solution to a problem. Arguments are often settled by fights. Battle is not to be feared - it is to be relished. True followers of Gromm find joy in battle. Indeed, Gromm encourages his followers to live as they fight - enjoying each day, drinking deep of the cup of life - for tomorrow they may die. Gromm also greatly admires those of his followers who die a heroic death and is said to reward them greatly in the afterlife.
Gromm is indiscriminate about his followers - any who are brave in battle are welcome to sacrifice at his altar. He cares nothing for rank or skill or ability - only bravery and strength. Many rank-and-file soldiers in armies across the world follow Gromm.
He is also the stormgod. Gromm enjoys lightning storms for their elemental power - he admires strength in all things. Gromm was not always the god of storms. Long ago, Ulf, Cheleria and Kylee argued over storms of lightning, each believing the lightning should be their province. Cheleria because the lightning came from her sky, Ulf because they struck his earth, and Kylee because the bolts also struck her sea. Vultan forged the lightning into a single crackling bolt, and offered it to whichever god could hold it. Cheleria and Kylee refused to try, and Ulf only laughed - but brave Gromm seized the thunderbolt with both hands. The shock knocked the war god from his feet, but he laughed - and the elemental gods, seeing how much Gromm enjoyed the bolt, agreed to give it to him as a gift. Gromm has never forgotten this, and has always been friends to the elemental gods.
Many appeals to Gromm are for deliverance from his tempests. He is viewed as a temperamental god who nevertheless will spare those who call out to him. Thunderbolts from the sky are often said to strike down those who have offended the thundergod by speaking ill of him.
Gromm the Redfisted
This darker aspect of Gromm is commonly called 'Grun' across the globe by those races not heavily influenced by elves, dwarves, or men. Considerable argument rages whether Grun is truly a hairy giant with tusk-like teeth, some kind of wild and primitive orc, or another creature altogether different. All agree that it is impossible that mighty Grun could be something as short and stocky as a Dwarf, and that those who call him Gromm are misguided fools.
They know his true nature to be the dark god of storms, who strikes down fools and cowards with his thunderbolts. More, he is the god of the strong, the strong take what they need. He favors people who revolt against oppressive masters, and lends his strength to theirs, creating the chaos of battle and revolution, which he revels in. He is the patron of pirates and bandits and those who bend the world to their will by force. He favors those who take what they want through battle - the spoils of war belong to those who take them. Grun has no sympathy for the weak or helpless. He admires the strong, and blesses those with the will to win.
Grun is often seen on battle standards of barbarian tribes, particularly those of Naduumian stock. Grun is also popular among pirates, though many still simply refer to him as Gromm, occasionally Gromm the Red. Pirate flags on the Avantarran and Valean coasts often sport a red clenched fist as their sign and homage to their god.
Symbols, Priests and Temples
Gromm's symbol is the thunderbolt.
His priests are often hard-drinking, hard fighting warriors, quick to laugh, with no fear of storms or death. Priests of Gromm are always armed and armored, and are often seen training in the temple courtyard. Priests of Gromm are often on the front lines of battle, leading small companies of warriors.
Temples to Gromm are usually just a pillar where prayers and sacrifices of wine are offered. The rest is basically an open courtyard. In nicer cities, there might be flagstones and an ornate pillar, carved in either Gromm's likeness or with important battle scenes from that city's history. In poorer areas, it might just be a patch of dirt with a wooden pole in the middle.
Temples of Grun are even sparser. Sometimes his followers re-purpose other temples for him, but usually they aren't in one place long enough to bother. Pirate ships sometimes have a small Grun idol on board and warrior-tribes will often carry a totem of him into battle. Grun expects nothing from his followers but fervor; he expects them to keep all their spoils for themselves. Priests of Grun are rare, except in warrior-tribes, where they are often war chiefs.
Briagi is an ancient and glowering dwarf, prone to fits of berserker rage. His hair is the color of a thunderstorm, his eyes burn like thunderbolts, and his voice is like a thunderclap.
Gromm is not terribly discriminatory about his faithful. Gromm's tenants are very simple: Fight. Win. If a follower of Gromm loses, they are said to have not fought hard enough. It is common for defeated followers of Gromm to run around during thunderstorms with their weapons pointed to the sky, trying to draw the God's attention. If they are struck, and survive, they are seen to have gained divine favor.
Priests of Gromm may pray at any time of the day they choose, but tend to prefer dusk or dawn, when most thunderstorms roll in.
Sacred Animal: bear