When Land of Doom came out I changed the cult of Dorasta to fit in with the new revealed truths. I moved the Nymph to Dorasta’s Cleft and made the Dorasta Shrine the Great Temple there. I added the Tobros subcult and any other associate cults as a Grain Goddess can have as many Husband Protectors as you like and also has very many associate cults. I kept the idea of the Plant Warp and the Curse on the land and did not allow Dorasta to be worshipped in Bilini or Talastar, preferring to keep her within Dorastor.
Anyway, I don’t think my version is a bad one and it kept the players on their toes, especially when Brankist challenged Ralzakark in Dorastor and Ralzakark said "OK, I am Dorasta’s Husband Protector, if you are so powerful YOU protect her for a year." and then proceeded to send Chaos forces against all the Dorasta Temples throughout the year, tying Brankist down for long periods of time. The players never worked out the truth about the High Priestess and never went into the Dorasta Cleft, which was a good thing otherwise they would have wanted to know about the Wolf Bear which, I think, is probably something which Greg Stafford does not know about and just put in there to stir things up a bit.
So, here is my version of the Cult. If you have any comments, please let me know.
As a fertile and pleasant goddess, Dorastor soon filled her land with plants and animals. She invited the people of her kinswoman Aldrya to live with her and two Great Forests sprang up within the shelter of the mountains nearby. Dorastor had many children, including the Feldichi who performed many miracles and did many impressive things.
During the Gods’ War, Dorasta was assaulted by many deities but managed to survive with the help of her many husbands. From the North came Yelmalio, from the South came Argan Argar, from the East came Orlanth, from the West came poison in the form of Ragnaglar the Mad God who forced her to his will and took her for a while.
After the Darkness, Dorasta awoke with the rest of the Earth Deities and greeted the Sun as her First Husband.
When the Second Council moved to the lands of Dorastor, worship of Dorasta was increased until her power rivalled that of Ernalda. When the God Project was finished, the God Nysalor married Dorasta and became one of her Husband Protectors. Lokamayadon the False Orlanth also married her at this time and became another Husband Protector. Ernalda became jealous of the power of Dorasta and poisoned the minds of the Gods against her, sending an Avenging Angel from the West to take her as Ragnaglar had before. Arkat the Destroyer, Ernalda’s nephew, took Dorasta and raped her, destroying her fertility, razing the ground, blasting the Earth’s powers and salting what remained.
Afterwards, Dorasta had no children who could survive. All lived for a short time and died of the poisons and curses on the land. Dorastor became a sterile and blasted land, where only the Elves survived in their ancient strongholds. Eventually, some Sorcerers came from the West and awakened a friend of Dorasta from long before. This friend became her Husband and tried to protect her from the Curse on her body. He took her deep within the myths of Glorantha and introduced her to the Changer who gave her the ability for some of her children to survive. Thus strengthened, Dorastor took the Changer as another Husband and the lands prospered and grew fertile in spite of the Curse.
Now, the land of Dorasta is renowned for its great fertility and for the wealth that comes from the Earth, so that people come from many lands to farm its lands.
When the High Priestess becomes an old crone, she leaves and joins the cult of Ty Kora Tek, leaving the next Chief Priestess to become High Priestess.
Men must pass a Test of Holiness and must give a gift to the cult of 100L.
Initiates may not refuse a member of the cult sustenance, but may ask for work as a payment.
Wild Daughters may sacrifice for cult magic and Subcult magic but not for spells from Husband Protectors.
Wild Women may eat of the plants of Dorasta without ill effects, so no poison or disease carried by Dorastoran plants will harm them. This means that they can survive in the wilds of Dorastor easier than most people.
When asked by Wind Lords "What Darkness shall I fight?" the Wild Women must always nominate a member of the Cult of Arkat and must grant the Wind Lord a fertility gift in return. As Arkat hurt Dorasta, this is a valid reply.
Wild Women must always bury the dead members of the cult if possible. If this is not possible, they must try to return to the corpse and bury it later. Dorasta does not like her worshippers being left on the surface for anyone to pick over.
As the Grain Goddesses.
As the Grain Goddesses, with the additional spell of No Harm.
No Harm (1 Point, Stackable, Reusable, Instant)
This spell is cast on a plant grown in the land of Dorasta. It causes the poisons or diseases in the plant to have no effect when eaten. Each point of spell affects one plant, if cast on a tree or bush, or a sheath of wheat or barley.
Initiates are affected as Priestesses, apart from the curse on their children.
Babeester Gor grants Great Parry.
Orlanth grants Wind Words.
Argan Argar grants Summon Shadow.
Yelmalio grants Catseye.
Yelm grants Sunripen.
Pocharngo grants Plant Warp.
Plant Warp (1 point, stackable, reusable, instant)
When cast on a plant or a 10x10m plot of grassy plants, Plant Warp causes the plants to mutate so any plants grown from that batch of seeds will be different from the parent plant. Each point of spell gives a 20% chance of mutation and a 10% chance that the plant will be chaotic. Mutations should be rolled separately for each plant derived from the parent.
Ralzakark provides protection from outside enemies.
Ragnaglar provides Fear.
Chaotic cult members often take husbands from the cult of Dorasta and therefore cannot become Wild Women.
Dorasta’s Cleft is a valley within Dorastor where Dorasta was buried to escape the Darkness and Arkat. It consists of two elongated hills joining in a Cleft with a dark cave between them leading into the ground. From a distance it looks like a woman lying on the ground with her legs apart, for that is what it is.
The Temple in Dorasta’s Cleft is headed by an Earth Nymph, a daughter of Dorasta from before Time. Few people know this, for her appearance changes slightly each year, sometimes she looks older, sometimes younger, sometimes taller or shorter, sometimes her appearance changes entirely. As an Earth Nymph, she has the usual abilities of being able to manifest anywhere within the Cleft and of being able to control any fixed INT creature born within the Cleft. She is also worshipped by the people of the Cleft and has considerable personal power.
Anyone not hostile to Dorasta may be escorted into the Cleft where many HeroQuests to the Earth may be attempted.
Whenever a Dorasta cultist finds an unhatched dinosaur egg or a pregnant fierce or large animal, they try to bring it to the Cleft so that the young are hatched or born inside the Valley, giving the Daughter control over them. This activity is frowned upon by Ralzakark and the surrounding Heroes, but still goes on. For this reason, the Daughter of Dorasta may call on a number of Dinosaurs, Bears, Wolves, Tigers and such-like in defence of the Cleft.
Each year, Ralzakark comes to the Cleft and performs the Sacred Marriage with the Daughter of Dorasta, the resulting birth eats its way out of her after one Season and becomes a powerful broo, normally raised by Ralzakark himself. The Daughter does not like this and tries to persuade another Husband Protector to challenge Ralzakark for this right, but has so far been unsuccessful.
The Vampires understand the difficulty of growing crops in Dorastor and often use the Plant Warp spell to protect their crops against the Curse, in the areas of farmland that were not Aldrya Forests previously. This means that a great deal of the initiates’ time is spent cataloguing the new types of plants grown, replanting them into similar fields, checking if new strains are persistent or poisonous and generally engaged in research. This also means that Never Dead cannot always guarantee a regular and stable supply of every crop, although it appears that more and more of the persistent strains are proving to be immune to the Curse and the wheat and barley grown on the Burnt Lands are stable crops.
There are approximately 1000 initiates involved in the farming of Never Dead, 200 involved in the Granary and 300 involved in the Caravans. Never Dead supports 9 Priestesses and their attendant acolytes of around 200. There is a Great Temple of Dorasta within Never Dead’s Earth Quarter. There is also a Major Temple to Babeester Gor who provides the Caravan and Granary guards and Shrines to all the major Earth deities, including Dagorma who provides skeleton guards for the Temples.
To escape the Curse, Dorasta married Pocharngo the Mutator and gained an ability from him. She could make her children produce mutated offspring and thus produce new varieties of plants. This meant that the Curse would not be able to keep up with each generation of change and the crops could survive.
When this was first shown to work, Dorasta blessed all her children and all their descendants, so that much of the wild crop in Dorastor is subject to a mild version of Plant Warp. Many plants within Dorasta’s realm has a 10% chance of producing mutated offspring. These mutants have a 10% chance of being persistent, that is they will breed true, subject to the normal 10% chance of mutation. Any non-persistent mutant plant will always produce mutated offspring. Mutants have a 10% chance of being affected by the Curse and will die. Persistent strains have a 10% chance of not being affected by the Curse , otherwise they will die out in several years. Many of the current "staple" plants in Dorastor are descended from persistent strains which are resistant to the Curse.
The mutations can range from changes in colour and texture to changes in size and shape, gigantism or dwarfism, changes in species, the gaining of poisonous or healing properties and even the gaining of intelligence or magical powers. Persistent mutants can have good properties, for instance the Dorasta Cult can grow giant forms of many vegetables and fruit and also have forms of Healing Plants unknown anywhere else in the world. They can also be harmful and care should be taken when dealing with any mutated plant.
Arkat’s Curse did not reach into the Aldrya Forests of Poisonthorn or Hellwood as Arkat was friendly to the Elves. For this reason, the plants in the Forests are not generally subject to the Warping effect, although mutants may grow their if spread by the winds, for instance, or if Plant Warp is used on the plants, as the Krjalki in Hellwood are known to do. It was mainly because the Curse does not reach nto the Forests that the Vampires of Never Dead burnt down an area of Hellwood many years ago. The burned area was turned over to cultivation and produces fairly stable crops, not affected by the Curse and not needing to be subject to Plant Warp.