For an atheist1, I certainly end up playing a lot of clerics in D&D.
Well, truth be told, I’m not in a D&D campaign at the moment; we’re actually playing Castles & Crusades. It’s a relatively rules-light mashup of D&D 3.x and first and second edition AD&D. So far, it’s working for me, and I’m looking forward to riding this wave until well after the dust has settled on the launch of D&D 4.0 this summer.
You’ll find below a brief summary of Trond, a deity I created for my character.
Nicknames: The Foe’s Foe, Lord Lilac, Trond the Trusting (sarcastic)
Associations: Demons, Change, Cooperation, The Current Age
Symbol: An open chain, no two links the same
Colours: Purple, Grey
Nearly a century ago, Trond was a cleric in faithful service to Woroph-Nel. When the demon incursions began, Trond worked his way to front and centre in the protracted battle, eventually coming to serve as figurehead for the ecumenical resistance. Though some faiths criticized his willingness to cooperate with anyone willing (including evil clerics, wizards, and knightly orders), none could doubt the effectiveness of his methods.
Trond was struck down in battle against a massive and grotesque demon-spawn, but not before he had made an impact upon the people and their stories. As an exemplar of humanity, and given the unforeseen rise of the entities his church would come to call “The Foe,” Trond was elevated to godhood (not necessarily unanimously) by the reigning deities. His charge: continue the struggle he championed as a mortal.
Trond’s clergy and devotees as a whole are dynamic and vital. They have not wasted any time in spreading his cause in the short decades the church has been in existence. Much of their success is due to a mandatory period of roaming missionary work that is expected of all able-bodied followers. Even after this time on the road, Trondites are expected to make their homes in an area that will benefit from their faith.
Bonus feature: a portrait of my character, Caspian al-Spahan, done in the style of Rich Burlew’s Order of the Stick.
1. And by atheist, I of course mean teapot agnostic.