A Kind of Homecoming
Saint Sollars the Twice Martyred
St. Sollars and the Journal of Brother Jarvis
As told by Brother Jarvis, wandering monk of Ilmater:
In the dark times after the Fall of Netheril and the Rise of the Inner Sea Nations, the common folk suffered
immensely. Their outcries and pleas reached the god Ilmater, who desired no dominion or control of anyone or
anything. To work his will, Ilmater sent his most trusted and faithful servant, Sollars, to Faerûn. Sollars was the
epitome of Ilmater’s teachings. In fact, he had been martyred for Ilmater’s cause in a far off sphere, but in a sign
from Ilmater, he was raised again to life, to show that suffering and death were not more powerful than
perseverance, belief and compassion.
Sollars’ work among the peasants and the poor attracted little notice from most powers. One power, however, took offense at this interloper and decided to end the Ilmater’s influence in new areas before it could take root. Talos the Destroyer sent three servants to deal with Sollars. They trapped him in an almshouse in Calimport and took him to mountaintop temple dedicated to Talos. Here, for an entire year, the servants tortured and tormented Sollars.
They chained Sollars in manacles of unbreakable iron and conducted horrifying tortures and punishments. The three tried to break his will and make him doubt or renounce his god. But Sollars did none of these things; his faith was strong.
The first servant took Sollars to the fledgling northern Inner Sea lands and showed him terrified peasants stalked by wild creatures. Sollars wept blood at the sight, but he was chained and could do nothing to prevent it. He prayed that civilization would come and ease the suffering of these poor souls, and asked that their suffering fall upon him instead.
Ilmater manifested his will by causing the chains to glow. Sollars heard the voice of his beloved god in his mind telling him that what he hoped for would come to pass in the fullness of years. In frustration, the first servant of Talos broke Sollars’ joints.
The second servant took Sollars to Chondath where a plague was ravaging the Vilhon Reach. The servant gloated, saying that suffering is in vain, because in the end, death would claim all. Sollars wept again; he prayed aloud that these people no longer would suffer and that he would endure their misery. Again, Ilmater manifested himself in a glowing of the chains. Ilmater caused the plague to be halted. In fury, the second servant spewed a virulent disease at Sollars, one which wracked his body with open sores and caused his hair to fall out.
The third servant took Sollars to the Savage North where many survivors of the fall of Netheril eked out an existence in the face of numerous orc attacks. The servant showed Sollars an orc city filled with human slaves who were forced to work under the lash for these cruel masters. The servant said that pain and suffering were the lot of man.
None could escape this agony. Sollars wept and prayed again. He asked that the pain and hurt be upon his shoulders for him to endure in their stead. Again, the chains glowed and the slaves were relieved of all pain and wounds. The now hale captives rose against their erstwhile masters and threw off their chains. The third servant scourged Sollars to the bone in rage.
Since Sollars was unwavering in his faith, the servants decided to sacrifice him upon the altar to Talos. They chained Sollars to the altar and began to perform their dark rites. In front of gathered masses, they proclaimed Sollars a heretic and death to be his lot.
Sollars cried aloud, Although you sacrifice my body to Talos, my soul belongs to Ilmater! With that pronouncement, Sollars willed himself to die. The servants of Talos were sorely vexed and decided to set his body up for the crows. As they reached for Sollars, the manacles on his wrists began to glow and the glow coalesced into an avatar of Ilmater.
In front of the gathered masses, Ilmater declared, This man has given his life a second time in my service. He shall be first among my servants on Toril, St. Sollars the Twice Martyred. Know that all goodly folk who suffer, endure and persevere have my blessing and can be relieved of all suffering beyond this life.
With a word, Ilmater banished the servants of Talos. He retrieved Sollars body and vanished. The masses saw the empty altar and believed the words of Ilmater. As a riot broke out, a convert made away with the chains and manacles that had secured Sollars to the altar. It is said that these holy relics are hidden away to appear when need for them arises.