Zilchus (ZIL-chus) is the Oeridian god of Power, Prestige, Money, Business, and Influence. His holy symbol is a pair of hands clutching a bag of gold.
Zilchus is a popular Oeridian god, depicted as a well-dressed Oeridian man of plain appearance. He is middle-aged, with brown hair and eyes, tanned skin, and a dignified demeanor, and depicted as smiling. His clothing is expensive without being ostentatious. He carries a gold purse and a flail with which to chastise the dishonest. Though he has little time for frivolous pursuits, he is knowledgeable about such matters because such knowledge helps him influence others.
Zilchus is the brother of Kurell and husband of Sotillion (and thus related by marriage to Procan, Merikka, and the Velaeri). He is a staunch ally of Rao and Heironeous. He acts as a dealmaker between deities, and has many contacts reflecting his ability to establish business relationships. Typically, Rao will convince warring gods to talk, and Zilchus the dealmaker will finalize their treaties.
Zilchus became estranged from Kurell when the thief-god spurned Atroa in order to pursue Zilchus’ own love, Sotillion. Kurell now lives alone with his jealousies, although it is said that the others would forgive him if only he would ask.
Xerbo is said to sulk whenever Zilchus encroaches on his followers, but they are not said to be enemies.
Zilchus’ realm is the Marketplace Eternal. He shares this domain with several mercantile deities from other worlds, all of them combining their assets for mutual benefit. The realm is a vast bazaar run by the souls who held one of these gods as their primary patron in life, continuing their occupations in the hereafter. Zilchus’ quarter of the Marketplace Eternal is called the Seat of Luxury.
Zilchus teaches that the desire for power, prestige, influence, and money can be overwhelming in the world of mortals, but this desire must be tamed in one’s own life so that it can be more easily exploited in others. The profit motive is viewed as something that improves the quality of all endeavors. Worshipers of Zilchus should strive to recognize the opportunities to increase their power, prestige, money, and influence and seize hold of them in order to one-up the competition. Zilchus teaches that politics and war are only aspects of trade, using words or lives as currency rather than precious metal, and should therefore be approached in the same way. One’s own currency, whatever its form, should be spent more wisely than ones’ rivals spend theirs.
Temporal power is regarded among the faith of Zilchus as a sign of one’s personal worth.
Zilchus is revered primarily by those who are fair, honest, and scrupulous in their dealings; shady merchants are more likely to look to his brother Kurell instead.
Zilchus’ faith has been widespread through the central Flanaess since the Great Migrations, and remains so today. Whenever trade is brisk, honest dealings are seen as important, and Zilchus’s faith thrives accordingly. Zilchus’ position as a god of power and influence has been somewhat weakened since the Greyhawk Wars with the rise of more martial faiths.
Zilchus’ clerics are ruthless in business, often viewed by others as emotionless souls, though of unimpeachable honesty. They involve themselves heavily in both business and politics, conducting deals above or below the table depending on their dispositions. They might work for powerful merchants, trade and crafts guilds, politicians, or nations, making transactions for their employers and accumulating prestige and currency for both their employers and themselves. Many are themselves merchants or nobles, or in some other position of temporal power. His priests are listened to by most rulers because of their honesty and diplomatic skills. Neophyte clerics are given less glamorous positions, such as managing caravans or remote businesses, or being hired as smugglers or adventurers.
Priests of Zilchus get along well with priests of Rao, though the latter gently chide them for their worldliness.
Zilchus’ favored weapon is the dagger.
Services to Zilchus involve incense burning, small offerings of goods, sermons, and homilies.