The Triad of Ice is in fact, not obsessively concerned with ice and snow, as many outsiders believe. Instead, the three gods of the Triad of Ice oversee three major forces that are part of the lives of every Haslanti.
- Master Winter is the oldest-looking of the Triad. With a beard of icicles and breath of frost, he walks over the land with his tally-sticks and record-books, laying down ice and snow. In the summer, he labors at the cold-forge, making snowflakes with hammer and chisel. In the revived Haslanti pantheon, he is the stern, unforgiving master who completes his labors on time and does not forgive those who shirk their duties. Master Winter is the god of preparedness and settled accounts. If you are not ready by his coming, he will exact the price of your failure to your sorrow. The Haslanti seek his aid at harvests and plantings, and speak his name at births and deaths and in wartime.
In the new Haslanti order, Master Winter is the god of preparedness and settled accounts, of the dangers of winter and the terrible storms it brings. He has no pity for people who do not make necessary provision for the future, but he behaves kindly to sensible, reliable and conscientious folk.
Winter is the time for hardworking folk to enjoy the fruits of their labors.
In winter, the god walks throughout Haslanti lands with his tally sticks and account books, recording snowfall and noting the movements of clouds for his reports to the Bureau of Seasons. During the summer months, he stays in his castle, patiently crafting snowflakes and frost crystals with hammer and chisel.
Master Winter leads the Triad of Ice, setting their overall agenda and laying preparations against attack from any front, with thousands of emergency disaster policies committed to memory. As the most formidable of the three, he is also their protector.
The Haslanti pray to Master Winter for foresight in warfare, when planting crops, when making or seeking a loan, and in all cases when planning or preparing for the future. They also speak his name at births, that an infant will grow up to be industrious and responsible; and at deaths, to prepare a spirit for its next journey.
Master Winter is the oldest-looking of the triad, with a long, icicle beard, cloud-white hair and frost breath. He wears blue robes, a cloak of steel snowflakes and warm, furred boots.
Sanctum: Master Winter’s castle, the Winter Fastness, is a giant fortress made entirely of ice, hidden among mountains in the Far North. Many wind spirits guard the castle and its environs. Terrible winter storms reign over the region for miles around, further obscuring its location and discouraging unwanted visitors. It is a level-4 Air manse as well. Master Winter also visits the House of the Nine Hearths of Emerald and Silver.
Motivation: To prepare the Haslanti for any and all dangers.
- Lady Chimney Draft is somewhat younger, with whiteblond hair and a grandmother’s wrinkles. She is usually shown hand in hand with Master Winter, but winking and showing a kindly eye to her supplicants. As the goddess of the slight chill when guests enter a house, she watches over host-guest relationships, friendship between neighbors and rules of hospitality. Haslanti pray to her for aid at harvest time, when bringing in a catch, when starting a new fire or when celebrating a marriage.
Lady Chimney Draft is the goddess of the chill that comes when a guest enters a house and of the warmth that comes of trust and companionship. She watches over guesthost relationships and hospitality between neighbors, friends and strangers. Lady Chimney Draft also oversees marriages, divorces and adoptions, none of which can be recognized without her priests’ ratification and seal.
The obeisance of the Haslanti delights her, while being inhospitable toward guests or neighbors or failing to honor one’s own marriage vows brings out her chill resentment.
She is proper and well mannered, always following the same rules of hospitality that she demands of mortals. Shows of reverence make her politely giddy; bad manners provoke an icy, but well-spoken, disdain. In addition to demanding good manners, she is unfailingly critical to those who make illegal or unreasonable requests of their hosts or guests. She has little sympathy for those who make illogical, brazen or shameless excuses for lack of hospitality.
Haslanti pray to Lady Chimney Draft at harvest time and when bringing in a catch, always making sure to save a portion of their stores for neighbors and itinerant strangers who come to their house. They also pray to her when lighting their hearths, that she might keep the chill at bay and not allow the fires to die. Traders often pay special reverence to Lady Chimney Draft, as they often find themselves subject to the hospitality of strangers. Ivrieinen of the Triad of Fate delegates to the other goddess some work regarding suitable marriages. While Lady Chimney Draft normally only ratifies marriages, she does sometimes help to bring suitable couples together, as per Ivrieinen’s instructions.
Lady Chimney Draft manifests as a middle-aged, hardy woman with white-blonde hair and deep, grandmotherly wrinkles around a prim smile. She wears plain clothes common to Haslanti women and often travels hand-in-hand with her consort, Master Winter. She is no great fighter, relying on Master Winter and Autumn Frost for protection.
Sanctum: Lady Chimney Draft dwells with Master Winter in his castle.
Motivation: To safeguard the rules of hospitality.
- Autumn Frost is the trickster of the Haslanti pantheon. A young person of varying gender, dressed in warm layers but with coat open and gloves off, he/she is shown dashing off on some adventure. The spirit represents risks with great rewards but also the costly dangers of bad luck. Autumn Frost represents luck and opportunity but also missed chances and risky gambles. The Haslanti pray for his/her help during dice games, travel and romantic adventures but also name him/her as the cause of much mischief.
Autumn Frost has steadfastly avoided the Immaculates at every turn. Even when surrounded, even when cornered, he has always found a way out despite overwhelming odds.
For that is Autumn Frost’s story. He plays the odds, takes unbelievable chances, activates probabilities of success and guarantees the odds of failure for his enemies.
The Haslanti regard an early frost as an apt symbol for the uncertainties of their lives. A frost before harvest can doom a farmer, but open the White Sea to iceships. Therefore, one must be ready to change plans and leap for new opportunities as they arise. You still might die, but if you’re strong, determined and cunning enough, you might win a fortune.
The trickster of the Ennead sometimes rewards Haslanti who take chances at great stakes with boons of luck. Whether this is good luck or bad, the person must work out for himself.
He lures in the bandits who carry a fortune in jade (if you can take it from them) or scatters the reindeer so the pursuing herdsman finds a new emerald. Sometimes, he levies his blessing on people who strive too much for safety and security. Autumn Frost does appreciate prayers, however. Ardent devotees are more likely to find their way through life’s dangers. Travelers, gamblers and those who hope for romance pray to Autumn Frost for luck. So do people who search for lost things. Nearly every Haslanti offers him prayers at one time or another, though. Only the most timid cowards and those who fear the god himself refuse to speak his name. Haslanti folk never pray to Autumn Frost for luck in battle. They would rather keep the god’s involvement in life-or-death situations to a minimum, given his/her unpredictability.
Autumn Frost changes appearance and even gender. He/ she usually dresses in warm layers of bright blue wool and warm fur but goes open-coated, with a broad, sly smile and wide, ever-youthful eyes. The god frequents gambling houses and wanders lonely roads in search of optimistic risk-takers who seem game for a challenge.
Sanctum: The odds are against anyone finding Autumn Frost’s modest forest lodge. It exists in between the cracks of probability. There is always an extremely slight chance that it waits around the next bend in the road or over the next ridge, but most visitors come upon it only if Autumn Frost wills it.
The place itself is a small, comfortably furnished house. Visitors who peek behind closet doors, under rugs or in bushels of fruit, inevitably find some lost, forgotten trinket.
Motivation: encourage risk as the only way the Haslanti will achieve their full potential.