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Calendar & Holidays

The Empire tracks the turn of days using the Kaedrin Calendar, established a few months after the crowning of the first emperor. Each day is twenty-four hours long, and seven days are a week. There are fifty-two weeks in a year.

Legend speaks of a a mysterious month named after the lost moon, Vallis. No one understands what this month is, other than only arcanists seem to have some benefit from it. Of course, most people scoff at this idea, for how can there be an unknown month when everyone knows how the days turn thru the seasons a regular as clockwork?

Holidays
There are many holy days celebrated by at least small slivers of the populace in Ptolus, but the following are the ones that most all citizens at least acknowledge, even if they might not observe them all:

Newyear’s Day (1st of Newyear): The first day of the year is one of celebration and good tidings. People reflect on the good things that happened in the previous year, but mostly they focus on the potential of the coming year with optimism and hope. Babies born on this day are considered lucky (but not extraordinarily so—unlike the cursed children born one day earlier).

Godsday (5th of Rain): This day is set aside to revere all gods. This is the holiest day in many religions, and at least an important one to all faiths (Lothianites fall into the latter category). Many consider Godsday to be the day when the gods’ influence in the world is the strongest—the day they look down upon their worshippers and pay the most attention.

Day of Joining (10th of Sun): This day is holy in many religions. Even to irreligious folk, it is thought to herald good fortune, particularly regarding new ventures such as alliances, business dealings, and, most importantly, marriages. In fact, ten times more couples are married on the Day of Joining than on any other day.

Brightfather’s Day (14th of Blessing): This ancient holiday is still observed, although its exact origins are now lost. Most religions have adopted it as a high holy day to revere an important god. All look upon it as a day of feasting, family, and making peace with enemies. The Pact of Brightfather’s Day was a historic joining of elves, dwarves, and humans to combat Ghul, the Skull-King. This is the high holy day of the Church of Lothian.

Harvest Festival (31st of Harvest): Celebrating the bounties of the harvest this day is filled with feasting, dancing, and performances of short historical plays characterized by colorful masks. The performers of these plays are often children.

Festival of the Cold Moons (23rd of Moons): Most people consider this day, which the elves call Chaokaemus, to be a dire one of ill omens and evil spirits. The somber, quiet festivals held each year on this night are full of rituals to ward away evil, to think about lost loved ones, and to appreciate one’s living family and friends. The elves, however, see this night as one of rejuvenation and rebirth—of good omens, not bad ones. They also hold festivals on this night, but they are celebrations of life and joy.

Yearsend Day (30th of Yearsend): If the Festival of the Cold Moons is a dire time, Yearsend is worse. It is considered a wholly unlucky day with no redeeming value, as the luck and goodness of the year has been all used up. No marriages, no celebrations, and no meetings are ever scheduled for Yearsend Day. Most people stay at home. Shops are usually closed, and people on the street hurry to their destinations, lest the ill luck of this day cause them some misfortune along the way.

Children born on Yearsend Day are cursed. Calamity follows them wherever they go. Milk sours faster in their presence. People standing next to these jinxes are struck by lightning. Buildings they enter collapse. These extremely unlucky individuals can undo their bad fortune in one of two ways. The first is to wait until everyone who knows when they were born has died. The second is to carry around a talisman made of a mummified cat’s eye. As long as the talisman remains in their possession, they suffer no ill effects.

Destor is a god of Yearsend. His worshippers ask him to send ill fortune away from them and toward others. (Not a popular sentiment: Destor’s worship was banned from Ptolus more than eighty years ago.)