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Temple of Idara

map: Temple of Idara

The Temple of Idara is a small three room church with a hidden cellar. The temple is dedicated to a goddess named Idara, whom the locals hold in reverence as the town guardian of Twin Shores. Other gods are recognized by the community, but Idara is the goddess to whom all miracles are attributed and no temple to other faiths exists, although there are priests of several beneficent gods who teach from their homes.
    The temple is built from stone and lit within by thick glass windows set in the sides of the building. The double front doors are very sturdy, dating from an age when the temple was also used as a safe haven by residents of Twin Shores should a powerful evil visit the town. Growing about the temple are vegetable gardens and apple trees, which are tended by its priest, Father Halin of the Shore. The fruit of these gardens sustain Father Halin, though much of it is given away to those in need from the community.
    Legend has it that once, many centuries ago, a beautiful paladin named Idara built the temple to safeguard nearby farmers in times of trouble. Her works of good did not end there however as she would travel the countryside and lend aid to any she found. In this manner, the region flourished under her watchful guardianship. After many lengthy decades she is said to have gathered the town's leaders together to tell them that she would be traveling away and would not return among them in such a way that they could see or touch her again, but rather that her spirit would be upon them and continue to watch over the town. She promised that her spirit would be upon any who invoked her name against evil, and then walked into the waters of Lake Clinnon and was never seen again.
    Since then, priests of Idara have inhabited the local temple, which was converted to a house of worship. Strangely, priests of the temple receive divine spellcasting abilities, much as any priest of the Great Faiths might. Many locals claim to have seen a solitary ghost of a woman in full plate wandering the city walls at night with her silver hair and cape streaming behind her.
    Many homes keep small statues and shrines to Idara. Three larger statues can be found of her on the east, south, and west walls of the city, where they look out over the city walls and "watch" for any trouble that might approach.
    Most non-locals attribute the divine powers of Idara's priests to be prayers answered by one of the gods of the Great Faiths, such as Arden, Chishleen, or Illustree, but the locals adamantly deny that it is anything other than Idara which protects their homes and brings them good fortune.

1) The temple grounds are surrounded by a small wooded area, most of which is apple orchards. Father Halin keeps these gardens and can often be found tending to them or teaching music atop a large stone that rests in the grass behind the temple. To the southeast of the temple are grassy grounds where many local parties are held when the weather is pleasent.
    2) The inside of the temple is floored with stone and dimly lit by the thick glass windows which are to the east and west. Fourteen pews, seven to each side, are arranged to face the front of the room where the floor is raised a couple steps and a life-sized statue of a human paladin rests upon one knee in meditation. Her left hand rests upon a stone-carved helmet and in her right hand, which rests upon her raised knee, is held a trefoil of wheat sprigs. She is young and beautiful, though the statue is obviously quite old. On the floor before her are two ancient prayers written in ancient Arnor. At the back corners of the room are stout wooden doors. During the night this room is lit by candles in the windows and a great wooden candelabra which hands from the ceiling in the middle of the room. The door to the outside is quite heavy, thick, and made so that it can be stoutly barred from within. A dusty wooden timber rests in the nearby corner which could be used to hold the door closed should need arise.
    3) This is the quarters of the temple priest, currently occupied by Halin of the Shore. The room is tidily kept and spartan but for a few bookcases, a modest bed, a washbowl, and an old wooden desk. The bookshelves are neatly kept with numerous scrolls, bottles, and books which tell of the life of Idara and also study various other religious philosophies. There are also transcripts of herbalist works, books on the healing arts, and tomes of history. During the day the room is lit by its two windows, opposite the entrance and at left. During the night candles or a lantern must suffice. The stout door to this room can be locked from within or without.
    4) This storage room holds devices for services, food stores for in times of need, minor potions, possessions of the care taking priest, gardening and building maintenance tools, and other mundane equipment. In a hidden panel on the north side of the center shelf is a switch which causes a stairway to lower in the northwestern corner of the room. The stout door to this room can be locked from within or without.
    5) The secret basement of the temple is accessed from the storage room (Area 4). There are no exits other than the stairway to the storage room. This chamber is occasionally used as a safe room when times of trouble have plagued the city. There is potable water, food, and room enough for 18 people to take shelter within here, though in a somewhat spartan and cramped manner. There are shelves lining the walls which hold precious possessions of the church, including strong healing potions, prayer scrolls, and more mundane valuables like the church's modest treasury of collections. The secret staircase to this room can be raised back into the ceiling by means of a lever on the wall near the bottom of the staircase. This room is kept closed and secret.