The Heart of Barsaive
Thystonius is the Passion of physical conflict and valor. Most soldiers mistakenly believe him a Passion of war and try to claim him for their own, but Thystonius cares little for killing. He resides in living bones and muscles, not in the corpses of the fallen. He loves the flexing and exertion of bodies competing against the odds—a foot race, an arm wrestle, or a man swimming for his life against the impossible currents of the Serpent River give him infinitely more pleasure than the carnage of battle.
In addition to those who embrace him wholeheartedly, Thystonius rushes to aid those who feel daunted by a physical challenge. The epic poem “The War of Tears,” recounts two camps of opposing warriors, both fearful of taking the battlefield the next day. Thystonius entered both camps during the night and spoke to each army, extolling the glories of war and promising the warriors they would all emerge heroes. Inspired by the Passion’s words, both sides joined in vigorous combat the following morning. The Passion kept his promise—the warriors’ heroic deeds were immortalized in the “The War of Tears.” Nevertheless, Thystonius’ habit of encouraging people to throw themselves at each other makes many people uncomfortable.
Ideals: Physical Conflict, Valor
Typical Appearance: Thystonius usually appears as a tall, muscular man or woman of any race.
Common Elements: Weapons, banners and pennants, armor, battlefields
Powers: Thystonius can increase martial abilities and strength, overcome pain, and travel instantaneously within a mile of any physical conflict.
Questors of Thystonius believe that diving headfirst into physical danger is the only way to fully experience life. Their primary motivation each day is to seek challenges and opponents to test their skills and valor. According to their vision of their Passion’s ideals, they must encourage others to do the same and so engage willing opponents as often as unwilling ones.
Questors of Thystonius make valiant, tireless warriors, and leap to defend entire communities single-handedly, if necessary. While this quality makes these men and women valuable allies, they cannot be counted on to consider the effects of their actions before they join battle, and so rarely learn to lead troops.
Certain people, who are willing to do almost anything to avoid conflict, accuse questors of Thystonius of using their superior strength to force people to fight against their will, thus acting like overgrown bullies.
Acts of Devotion: Engage in a test of physical prowess; combat, leaping over a particularly wide chasm, and so on (Minor). Lead soldiers into battle (Major). Fight a powerful opponent until one or both combatants cannot continue (Zealous). Bring victory to a nation involved in a full-scale war (Quest).