velsharoon_symbol.jpg
The Vaunted, Archmage of Necromancy, Lord of the Forsaken Crypt
Pantheon Faerunian
Realm Dweomerheart
Portfolio Necromancy, necromancers, evil liches, undeath
Worshippers Liches, necromancers, seekers of immortality through undeath, Cult of the Dragon
Domains Death, Evil, Magic, Undeath
Favored Weapon Skull Staff of the Necromancer (quarterstaff)

Velsharoon

Velsharoon is a vain, selfish, petty, but very canny deity consumed with vengeance, obsessed with experimenting on living and dead begins, and unconcerned with the fates of lesser creatures. In many ways, he continues to act like the mortal he used to be, albeit with far greater power at his disposal. Newly elevated to a divine state, the Lord of the Forgotten Crypt is only beginning to create a cult of worshipers in the Realms. Although many prognosticators, mortals and immortals alike, have predicted the quick destruction of this arrogant necromancer, Velsharoon has played one power off against another, and he has begun to establish himself in the Faerûnian pantheon.

Life and death are the twin faces of eternal existence. To surrender to either one is to resign oneself to obscurity. True poer lies in the intermediate zone between life and death. By seeking to explore and extend the mortal condition and form - even mortal life itself - knowledge of the world and its infinite complexity are extended. Let no one interfere with the pursuit of such research, for the end result will more than justify the necessary sacrifices along the path. Knowledge is power, and knowledge of life and death brings power over all beings, living and unliving.

As a mortal, Velsharoon was a renegade Red Wizard of Thay whose chief rival was Szass Tam. He aspired to the position of Zulkir of Necromancy, but was driven from that land centuries ago after feuding with his chief rival, Szass Tam, and several other powerful Red Wizards. Nearly as powerful as his archrival, Velsharoon spent many decades seeking enough power to destroy Tam and other wizards to challenged his evil machinations.

The Archmage of Necromancy discovered a method for a mortal to achieve divinity laid forth by Talos, ascending to godhood in 1368 DR, but quickly realized that the Storm Lord would simply exploit him until he was destroyed. Velsharoon then shifted his allegiance to Azuth, who, with Mystra's help, blocked Talos from seeking vengeance.

Velsharoon is largely unknown throughout Faerûn, but in the past year or so many bards have begun to relate fanciful tales of his ascension to audience's seeking to be frightened by stories of horror. Outside of secretive cabals of necromancers, those mortals who are aware of this evil demipower perceive Velsharoon as the lord of liches and a power able to organize the undead against the living.

Cultists of Velsharoon gather in dusty crypts, abandoned mausoleums, and neglected graveyards. The Necromancer has few true temples, but those few which have been constructed are located in ancient catacombs or necropolises and resemble brooding stone mausoleums carved with ghastly depictions of the dead, the dying, and the undead. Fetid air and the cloying reek of embalming fluid waft through such edifices, and undead servitors serve as untiring sentinels. Vast laboratories, crammed storerooms of alchemical supplies, and befouled mortuaries consume most of the space, and few concessions are made toward sleeping chambers, dining halls, and kitchens.

Priests

The church of Velsharoon is a new one, and what hierarchy exists is found within individual temples. Many clerics of Velsharoon spend their days in necromantic research, seeking to understand and expand the faith's collective knowledge of life, death, and undeath. Most have created hundreds of undead servitors. When an undead creation has served its purpose, these researchers often brand the symbol of their deity on its chest and then order it to wander randomly across the Realms. Other priests are involved in support activities for the faith (Grave robbing, embalming, or teaching.) A few new initiates to the cult sometimes cure the minor ills of the populace to bring in funding or worldy supplies for the church and to more easily gather information about its enemies. Priests pray for their spells at midnight, when the secrets of the night are best unearthed.

A special sect of priests called Necrophants was rumored to have surfaced not long after worship of Velsharoon began. These priests know a great deal about undead creatures and the secret mysteries and intricacies of the human body.

Priestly Vestments

Velsharan vestments resemble once-resplendent, rotting wizard's robes. The Necromancer's clergy wear garments of varying colors-any shade except red-but their habits are uniformly of somber hue. Most adorn their vestments with depictions of skulls and bones, but the faith is still young enough that fixed patterns of adornment for the various ranks have not developed.

When adventuring, Velsharan clergy members favor iron-shod staves and cold iron or silver maces which are effective when battling undead. Most eschew armor as too great a burden on their spellcasting abilities, with only the relatively rare clerics of the clergy garbing themselves in conventional protective garb. A typical priest or necromancer disciple of Velsharoon considers an escort of undead servitors as eminently suitable armor.

Ritual

For a relatively young faith, the clergy of Velsharoon have quickly established a large number of holy days and rituals. The faith has yet to coalesce into homogeneous creed, however, and widely varying rituals are found not only in different temples, but within individual temples as well.

Two rituals have become fairly widespread. The Binding of the Crypt and the Pact of the Everlasting are two rituals performed by powerful priests, allowing them to return as an undead creature or be raised from the dead automatically if they are slain. Both rituals involve numerous other horrible incantations and foul sacrifice of priests and worshipers of enemy faiths. Prominent theologians of the faith claim that these rituals are merely two of the seven to be revealed by Velsharoon along the path to achieving immorality.

Azuth remains an unlikely and unhappy ally of Velsharoon, and Talos seems to be biding his time until the Lord of the Forgotten Crypt gets his comeuppance. Kelemvor, the new Lord of the Dead, and Jergal, Scribe of the Doomed, actively oppose Velsharoon as his predilection for black necromancy violates many of their most cherished tenets. Cyric and Velsharoon share a mutual enmity as both seek to acquire a larger portfolio at the expense of Kelemvor. It is only a matter of time, however, before the forces of nature, and the Triad of Law and Good add Velsharoon to their list of threats to the Realms.

  • deities/velsharoon.txt
  • Last modified: 2018/01/13 06:47
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