“When you enter the black temple, fallen angels gilded in silver and gold, you hear unearthly and intensely anguished music filling the smokey central dome. You walk around the obsidian pillar in the center and you notice four rooms with barred windows. In each room are two cultists wearing nothing more than heavy chains and surrounded by sharp implements on wires. Each has bloody bandages around their throats, wires keeping their lips wide and taut, and their eyes have been replaced with silvered orbs. Each note of this symphony is pulled from the cultists’ throats by a different torture, administered by the machines around them. A burst of flame, a needle to a nerve, or a turn of a screw beneath a nail form the keys of this ghastly piano.”
The Temple of Cloistered Suffering revere the darkest aspect of the goddess Ariellinar, who they call The Bleeding Angel. They believe that suffering and mutilation in their purest, sanitized forms are the surest way to know the divine. They only ask for volunteers and, though their clerics are often skilled artists, their medium is flesh.
Few are the places where believers in The Bleeding Angel can operate in the open. Many believe the Temple of Cloistered Suffering to be practitioners of necromancy and evil gods; an image that is difficult to put aside. However, cities that do allow them to build their cathedrals have found that the clerics are generous to the poor, healers to the sick, and they throw fantastical parties for the aristocracy. Of course, there will always be some commoners who tell anyone who listen how their son or daughter was put under some spell and forced to join the temple, where they’ve been turned into some grotesque instrument in constant pain. Sadly, in these places, few care to listen.