Lovers and the Lovelorn in the Sea of Stars (A to Z)

14 April, 2021

Who is it from?While some would argue that in the Sea of Stars the driving aspect of most is power, plain and simple, but even if that is true it does not stop love from existing and, for some, being the most important thing in the world.  Naturally, the goddess and gods of love, romance and lust are all long gone so there is no higher power to appeal to in the pursuit of love, just like around here, they just have themselves and their family and friends to ask for help and advice (and what a sad state of affair that is).

Many dragons would deny that love is an emotion dragons feel or a concept they appreciate, others know that is not true (but are not foolish enough to argue with the dragon who deny it).  There is an underground market for dragon-focused love stories, especially among the Visse, but they are always keep hidden well away from the dragons and their scions.  The dragons and their kine like to think that they are the only master of their hearts and would, and do, scoff at the idea that they could just fall in love with someone and not have control over.  Love is totally unlike greed, greed is good, greed is the core of the draconic nature and entirely an acceptable emotion for a dragons . . . unlike love.

Is is said that the Empress has never known love but who knows if that is true?  (Perhaps the Legend of Betrayal’s Tear may answer that question or perhaps not.)  Certainly some others dragons have fallen in love but rarely with other dragons for some reason.  Perhaps because dragons, when they meet, immediate revert to dominance contests by their nature.  Or maybe that dragons have trouble thinking of anyone that could be their superior as an object of affection.  There are many theories and few answer, partly as it is a subject dragons rarely care to discuss.

The elves have a long heritage of romance and love poetry, wooing songs and traditions,all of which have been tinged with sorrow and sadness since the Sundering.  The elves still retain a reputation as the greatest romantics in the Sea of Stars and their advice is sought out for aspiring romantics and hopeful seeking of love.  Of the cultures of the Sea of Stars, the elves tend to weigh love, seeking it, finding it, more highly than most

Dwarves will tell you that love is the product of hard work and dedication, at least that is the official cultural position on such matters.  As a rule, the dwarven culture expects love to follow marriage, as most marriages are arranged by matchmakers and the families involved (admittedly with a careful eye to compatibility between the couple).  Stability is equated with love, though most dwarven couples manage to become comfortable with each other, deep love within marriage is rare and celebrated.  Equally, the dangers of pursuing love outside of socially approved routes is warned against and tragic stories of what happened to those who pursued love over duty are a theme in dwarven poetry and tales.

Human cultures, naturally, range across the spectrum on their attitudes towards love and its place, the Eosiant exalt it for example, the people of Taren Kost seek to align it with fealty and family ties, while in the Jade Pillar Dynasty, familial is the driving imperative.

Among the Visse, loving relationships and marriage for love is encouraged, as a servant caste they do not have much in their life that they can direct, love is one of the few aspects that they get some control over.  As a general rule, as long as it does not impact their efficiency or loyalty, the Dragons are happy to let the Visse follow their hearts in matters of romance and love.

Generally in the Sea of Stars, gender and kine is considered to be no barrier to love, women with women, men with men, elf with human, beastkine with dwarf, and so many more variations and combinations, none of these are considered unusual.  Though most cultures expect families to produce children, this can be overcome by adoption, magic or other solutions.

Notes: More on marriage in the Sea of Stars here and I discussed the problems of role-playing and storytelling around arranged marriages here.  There are several love themed magic items here if you wish to search for them as well.

Image “The Love Letter” by Jean Honoré Fragonard is marked with CC0 1.0.

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