The Golden Way is the name of a religion that worships the dragon Eiya.
Objective for the Individual:
The purpose of the Golden Way is to draw a soul into alignment with Eiya so that Eiya can transmit that soul to heaven. Eiya does this by physically consuming the body attached to that soul. Once Eiya eats you, you go straight to heaven. The ultimate purpose of the Golden Way is to convince people to not simply let Eiya eat them, but to earnestly pray and plead that Eiya do so.
Eiya refuses to eat evil people out of mercy. Evil people that get transmitted through Eiya go to extra-special hell.
- The ancient sins of the elves broke the Creator’s connection to this world. Since that time, dead people have been left in limbo. Most eventually reincarnate, though they become more miserable with each iteration of their life.
- To reestablish his connection to the world, the Creator sent his favorite angel.
- The Deceiver, wishing to keep the souls of this world from ever reaching heaven, sent twenty-three of his most capable devils to prevent the favorite angel from accomplishing its purpose.
- The devils twisted the angel’s beautiful body into their own horrible shape, that those souls who saw the angel might be too frightened by its appearance to let it send them to heaven.
- After a time, the angel, Eiya, established herself as the benevolent ruler of the far west. To convince people of her true nature, Eiya forged a smaller gold body for herself, though even this form carried the twisted hallmark of the 23 devils.
- Eiya has devoured four of the 23 devils. Elves have killed three of them and other dragons have killed four more. Once all of the 23 are removed from the world, Eiya shall return to her true angelic form.
- In the mean time, each additional soul that Eiya transmits to heaven strengthens her connection to the Creator and makes her a little bit more powerful. The more Eiya eats, the sooner all that is may be reconciled to heaven.
Signs, Powers and Followers:
- In order to show that her throat is a gateway to heaven, Eiya eats random people every so often. These people later return through Eiya’s mouth and tell of how wonderful their heaven was. Some of them have gone into Eiya and then come back, only to beg Eiya to eat them again.
- Thanks to her angelic nature, Eiya’s lands are the most peaceful and prosperous in all of the known world. Disease is nearly unknown and there hasn’t been a famine in three thousand years. Eiya’s lands are only a taste of the paradise at the other end of her throat.
- Eiya’s only priests are known as her “Golden Hands”, all of whom are highly skilled healers.
- This means that Eiya’s navy (The Golden Fleet. See a pattern?) does not use magic in combat at sea.
- Pretty much all of Eiya’s followers are humans, though some Free Brean dwarves and orcs worship her. Elves generally dismiss the Golden Way out-of-hand because of their own religious beliefs. Other dragons, in general, do not understand the Golden Way enough to comment on it.