Cato Oranovich is the face and guiding influence of the mysticism movement within the Imperium. To his followers he advises healthful outdoor living, gentle exercise, respect for dead elders, and frequent consumption of magical or psychedelic drugs.
Cato is elusive about his place of birth. His country of origin is one of the many “pleasant mysteries” he encourages his followers to cultivate about themselves. He speaks in a lilting Collabrian accent, however, there are rumors that this is affected. Many say that in his early days at court he spoke with a different accent, or without any accent whatsoever. There are rumors that he is an escaped slave or disgraced missionary; and rumors that he is an influential courtier wearing a disguise. There are even wild tales suggesting he was a potential heir to the God King who escaped death at the hands of his rivals. All rumors about Cato are presumed to originate from Cato himself.
Disbelievers often point out that Cato cannot raise the dead with impunity, nor has he ever successfully prophesied a specific event. Critics consider him little more than a glorified drug-dealer, since his arrival at a court is often followed by waves of opium, sleepwave, and float. He is sometimes accused of blaspheme, noting that he is never seen at court during the visitation of the God King.
In response, his fellow mystics point out various “pleasant mysteries” that could not be attributed to common magic. They note his inexplicable success navigating a rigid social hierarchy. Similarly, in Cato’s presence, they report frequent incidents which could be attributed to the beneficial intervention of ghosts or prophecy.
There are over forty verified incidents of “mystic phenomenon” occurring around Cato, including the appearance of what may be ghosts or spirits, members of the court being saved from (or led to) untimely death, and the prevention (or causation) of major natural disasters. Most famously, Cato is believed to have saved the entire upper court of Matriarchy Volginius from disembowelment by bandits during a hunting party. However, recent evidence suggests that the thousand-year-old warrior band which sprung to the defense of their descendants was, in truth, a group of wandering tinkers wearing old-fashioned hats.