Lightning Eyes; Thunderbird

Symbol: A large bird, its wings spread
Home Plane: Beastlands
Alignment: Chaotic Neutral
Cleric Alignments: Chaotic Good, Neutral, Chaotic Neutral, Chaotic Evil
Portfolio: Destructive water, storms, weather, rainbows
Worshipers: All who depend on weather, such as farmers and sailors
Domains: Air (Cloud, Wind), Animal (Feather), Travel, Weather (Storms)
Favored Weapon: Throwing axe

Physical Description:
So massive in size that he blocks out sun and stars, Chekari is an eagle with wings that shimmer with the weight of the rain within them, and a beak full of teeth. Chekari's wingbeats bring the thunder and his bright eyes lance out lightning, and he trails the rainbow in his wake. The plumage of Chekari changes with his mood, varying between steely grey and churning black like ominous thunderheads when Chekari is bringing storms, his wings beating with each crack of thunder, to a vibrant, iridescent, radiant spray of rainbow colors that dazzle from his wings in silent gliding flight. In especially calm times, Chekari is known to take on a female aspect, which is more brightly-colored, but which is also smaller, so that she does not cause thunderclaps with the beat of her wings. If an even smaller form is needed, Chekari can become one of the birdfolk, though his plumage remains the same as in his larger, more natural form.

Description of Nature, Personality, and Dogma:
Driven by the thoughts of the planet itself, Chekari is a fickle creature, as prone to change as the weather. Chekari is the very essence of storms, a creature of immense power and little restraint, acting on impulse when the mood takes him, whether it be acts of random kindness or wanton destruction. Those who follow Chekari have a similar outlook, tending towards chaotic and unrestrained action, acting out their inner desires when the mood takes them. Being true to one's own nature is Chekari's doctrine, even if that requires going against what is considered normal in a culture.

Clergy, Places of Worship, Important Rituals, and Servitor Races:
Those who wish to become clerics of Chekari must seek him out. This is done through a ritual where the potential cleric seeks out a high place, and then waits there as a storm comes overhead. Provided that the aspiring cleric has prepared sufficiently beforehand, making the appropriate sacrifices and performing the appropriate rituals (which vary somewhat depending on culture), then that cleric will get Chekari's attention. Chekari makes it known that he has noticed an aspiring cleric by sending down a bolt of lightning from his eyes, which engulfs the acolyte. If the acolyte survives, then they are able to call on Chekari for divine magic. The clergy of Chekari, understandably, are noted for their rather shocking appearance and occasionally wild mannerisms, their minds changed significantly by the glance of their god, as well as for being in excellent physical condition. There are also societies, typically called Backwards Societies, within Chekari's clergy that are noted for cross-dressing, homosexuality, and other backwards behavior, deliberately setting themselves apart from others in extreme ways. Since these societies tend to have many warriors given to erratic and sometimes outright insane behavior that makes them nearly unstoppable and completely unpredictable in battle, they are respected regardless of their tendencies.

Chekari favors wide open spaces and high plateaus for the sites of his temples: places traditionally associated with storms. These temples have lightning rods affixed to them, so that they remain safe from the glance of Chekari's eyes, and have an open frame construction, allowing wind to blow through them, which also makes them immune to the destructive effects of all but the most terrible of windstorms. Shrines to Chekari are actually large totem poles (and similar poles are placed around his temples), and these poles are frequently used as the centers of the Rain Dance (see below). Any community that wishes to give Chekari proper respect will also have a sweat lodge, a relatively small and airtight building where those seeking ritual purification and dream visions can go and meditate in the heat and smoke that quickly fills these lodges.

The most important ritual to honor Chekari is the Rain Dance. This ritual is typically performed right before the rainy season of a region as a way of ensuring that sufficient rain is given, without too damaging storms. During the course of the Rain Dance, trained dancers, most of them dressed in costumes designed to look like Chekari's various aspects, will perform until they are exhausted and unable to continue any longer, though the longer a dance continues, the more likely Chekari is to be merciful to a people. Tobacco is smoked extensively during this time in ritual Thunderbird pipes, and a great quantity of it is offered up to the Thunderbird on a raised wooden platform which is then set on fire.

All rocs serve Chekari, no matter where they may be. Chaos rocs (Monster Manual 2) are his chosen offspring, and often attend him in flight.

History and Relations:
One of the elemental forces that was persuaded to join the gods in the battle for reality itself against the Fallen Ones, Chekari was quickly accepted to godhood, raised to that state by a strange cooperation between Tiamat and Nimbus. Chekari still owes much to these draconic gods, and is also one of their lovers, though he has to share Nimbus with Leviathan. This causes Chekari and Leviathan to maintain a healthy but rather friendly rivalry. Yemaja and Chekari are in a state of perpetual give and take, as Chekari enjoys bringing great and terrible storms, while Yemaja wants the waters to be calm and soothing. Since neither is able to force the other to change, and both are of roughly equal power, they have learned to compromise. This is why Yemaja is unable to save every sailor who falls overboard, but also why Chekari does not cause it to storm constantly. Jyn and Chekari dislike each other, and Harrow actually frightens Chekari, who prefers to give the Howler a wide berth whenever possible. As the god of storms, Chekari is able to touch the mind of Matra herself, and it thus intimately acquainted with the Mother Goddess, and willing to obey her will completely.

Favored Offerings and Justifications for Direct Intervention:
Chekari is fond of sweet scents, and so his worshipers burn fragrant incense to appease the Thunderbird. Smoking tobacco is a common offering for Chekari, who has a weakness for the stuff, while more elaborate offerings include many sheaves of grain and sea mammals killed in the hunt.

As a general rule, Chekari is concerned only with fulfilling his natural function, namely, bringing the rain and storms to the land, and does not answer the calls of mortals. He is fickle, however, and is occasionally willing to listen to requests for bringing rain to specific areas, and can be persuaded to call down storms on the foes of a people who give him proper respect. On a few occasions Chekari has even been moved with sufficient compassion to provide food to a people starving to death, usually in the form of great sea beasts driven before his wings or captured in his talons, depending on how able that people were to slay the beasts themselves.