Social Status

Social Status

In Elysombra, social status is based on one's holy vocation, not one's birth status or gender. (That said, certain families have reputations that can help or hinder the careers of their members.) Paladins, clerics, monks, and wizards all have particular roles to play in society. Individuals have status based on their vocations. For example, a cleric is accorded more status than a paladin, but a rider (a paladin that has successfully called their steed) has more status than an inexperienced cleric. Once a cleric has raised someone from the dead, they gain the title "Lightbringer," and a lightbringer out-statuses a rider.

In this context, "king" is a high-status vocation, like "high priest" or "lightbringer." The very first introductory page of information about Elysombra cites the people as "of one kinship with the king." (This phrase gained special meaning when it implied that one's lineage did not exclude one from possible kingship, and one of the PCs was able to become king.)

Note that members of other character classes do not have holy status in the society, so they are treated simply as kin, with no status based on character class. In fact, an non-holy class can reflect poorly on one. A fighter, for example, is one who has devoted their life to violence and who does not follow the paladin's code. A fighter, in Sombran estimation, is a brutal thug. (Dwarf fighters, however, are honored, since the Creator fashioned dwarves to go into the Fallen Angel's underland and defeat his evil creatures.)

In my campaign, Elmo the halfling rogue became a lightbringer when he used Use Magic Device to cast raise dead from a scroll. I gave the player the option: either his casting of that spell represented the appearance in him of genuine holy power, or he was merely faking it really well. He jumped for the first option and started taking levels in monk. Though the character isn't a cleric, he is legitimately "Lightbringer Elmo."