Wrath of the Righteous
Last of the First Humans
Most of Aroden’s followers have become clerics of Iomedae, his greatest servant, whom he promoted to divinity. Those few who do stay true to the Aroden have been left without divine power. They preside over crumbling temples, many of which have been taken over by other religions, most prominently that of Iomedae.
When Aroden walked the world disguised, he took on one of twelve guises: beggar, thief, fisherman, hunter, shepherd, farmer, soldier, merchant, tailor, craftsman, artist, and scholar. Travelers to the Cheliax can find these guises carved into stone walls and recesses throughout the nation.
Aroden was an immortal descendant of the ancient human kingdom of Azlant which sank below the waters of the Arcadian Ocean millennia ago after a cosmic that created the Inner Sea and cast Golarion into a thousand years of darkness.
Somehow Aroden survived. Thus, he is considered the “Last of the First Humans” because he was (by several thousand years) the last “pure-blooded” High Azlanti to die. Other Azlanti survivors of the cataclysm interbred with other humans and, of course, died of old age.
He is best known for founding the city of Absalom. He thereafter ascended into the heavens, becoming the patron deity of the Kingdom of Taldor. Before his ascension, he is known to have completed a number of miraculous tasks. The most famous of these is when he traveled to a small settlement in Cheliax. The town was surrounded by plains of red roses, half of which turned white at Aroden’s mere presence. These flowers maintained their coloration for thousands of years to come.
After his ascension, Aroden worked hard to protect and aid the denizens of Golarion. He guided the brightest and bravest to Absalom, where he encouraged the growth of the city. Usually, he preferred to provide aid from a distance. Even so, when necessary, Aroden took a very active role in the destruction of those who would threaten Absalom. Soon after his ascension, he led a host of mortal heroes and powerful outsiders into the abyss to slay a demon-lord who had been systematically murdering the descendents of the Azlanti.
Over a period of a few thousand years, Taldor (which is located due east of the Absalom) spread northwest across the southern reaches of the continent of Avistan, where its frontier land claimed territory now known as Cheliax. When Taldor eventually became decadent and debauched, the clerics of Aroden took their religion (and their mandate from heaven) west to Cheliax.
Aroden is only known to have appeared twice in recent centuries. He appeared in 4433AR at the end of The Century War in the now lost nation of Sarkor, to fight the avatar of the demon lord Deskari and drive him and his followers into the Lake of Mists and Veils. Then, in 4582AR, he defeated a powerful lich wizard-king of Ustalav, although the exact reason for this conflict is unknown.
Aroden made several prophesies on the fate of Golarion. His last prophecy suggested that he was to manifest in Cheliax in 4606AR, marking the beginning of a new golden age. Instead, at the appointed hour, Golarion was racked with three weeks of storms, and the appearance of the Worldwound, a planar rift to the Abyss. When the weather broke, the clerics of Aroden found themselves disconnected from their god, and all presume Aroden is dead.