Story:Holy Opposites Glossary
Note: italics denote spell names.
Aasimar: These distantly angelic beings are the mortal descendants of Celestials. They have little in common with each other directly, but all do share a few traits. They have an innate sense of right and wrong, and are hard to dissuade from a course of action. Physically, they are beautiful, with clear, piercing eyes, healthy bodies, flawless skin, and trustworthy appearances. Mentally, they are not the same as their parents’ race, and indeed may look nothing like them. Aasimar often find themselves subjected to discrimination and superstition from their surrounding populations, thanks to the entirely false rumor that they can grant miracles. They tend to live longer and healthier lives than humans, though not as much of either as an elf would. Aasimar have an easy time using magic, as well.
Aasimon: An obscure term for angel.
Abyss: The Abyss is the home of demons, and the largest and most horrifying of the afterlives. The Abyss spans 666 layers of one colossal plane, which has been located alternately between two adjacent parts of the Outer Planes or within the Elemental Chaos, depending on the ever-shifting nature of the planar cosmology. The Abyss has a river of blood running through it, the Styx, and it is the only constant in the Abyss. Unlike the Hells, no one being controls the Abyss, though many have tried. As an afterlife, souls wind up here daily by the millions, and are promptly captured and forced into the hideous petitioner forms of larvae.
Angel: Beings of the planes and the Astral Sea. Most angels serve Gods of their own volition, though some strike out on their own. Others never entered a deity’s service. Angels cannot grant prayers like Gods can, but can travel between dimensions, and offer blessings. The very mightiest of angels, like Solars and Planetars, can easily outmatch any Fiend for power, are immune to mind control, and have true free will, which eludes lesser angels. Most angels cannot interbreed with mortals, but some rare few can, including the sort known as Devas. Devas can dwell on the planets of the Prime Material Plane freely, and reincarnate as themselves upon death.
Ao Overgod: The enigmatic and nigh-omnipotent Overgod Ao is in charge of the Tablets of Fate, which are artifacts of immense metaphysical power. Ao administrates the balance between good and evil, law and chaos, life and death in the Realms. Somewhat less directly, Ao is also responsible for monitoring any breaches into the Reams from other facets of the multiverse, though in practice, he never makes any real attempt to do so. Ostensibly, Ao answers to another, far higher authority of ultimate and pure omnipotence, though this being has never exerted any real authority over the Realms, and may not exist. Unlike literally all other Gods in the Realms, Ao does not require any worship or souls to sustain himself, does not grant prayers, never bestows miracles, ignores his followers, does not uphold an afterlife, does not need to operate a Pocket Plane, and does not promote any Exarchs or Chosen. Oddly, he also does not attempt to prevent intraplanar or interplanar incursions by fiends, so long as they do not challenge him.
Arborguard: The small circle of elite petitioners and angels who defend the Arbor of Innocence, beyond the defense it normally enjoys as a satellite of Celestia.
Arvandor: The Outer plane of elves and fey, and a heavenly place of rest and dwelling for dead elves. This plane is the afterlife of elves and their kin on Toril and the Feywild, but any who worshipped a member of the Seldarine may wind up here in death. Unlike most examples of afterlife planes, however, Arvandor also has large populations of living people, who dwell peacefully alongside petitioner spirits and Noble Eladrin, angels and gods. These people are generally refugees, though not all.
Bane: If there is a single, ultimate evil in all of the Realms, Bane is surely the top contender for the position. Bane was once a man, ascended to the position of a God after forcing the incumbent Jergal (who hated his job anyway) to step down. Bane became the god of Hate, and he seeks to spread his absolute, ironclad rule over all living things. He is opposed by essentially ever other major player in the Realms, including other evil Gods and more or less every Fiend who doesn’t serve him, but thanks to his logistical genius and the devoted circle of lesser divine players he has assembled under his authority, he has never stayed beaten for long.
Beholder: A floating monster with a single, massive eye in the center of its spherical body. Beholders are wicked, intelligent, magic, cruel, and covered with tentacles that each end with an additional eye per eyestalk.
Blackstaff: Originally a surname of a powerful mage, the word Blackstaff now refers to a specific title and office, that of the Wizard of Waterdeep; the highest-powered magic-wielder on the payroll of the Masked Lords.
Blood War: The Blood War was an ages-old war between the three forces of Fiendish evil: The Devils of Hell, the Daemons of the Great Blood Rift (the default battleground of the war), and the Demons of the Abyss. The Devils and Demons warred endlessly for evil supremacy, the Daemons and their creators the Baernaloths served as mercenaries and logisticians, and the various Evil Gods chuckled in amusement as their enemies wasted resources. The Devils suddenly won the War, however, during the Spellplague that resulted from the death of the Goddess of Magic, Mystra. When one of the Goddess’ subordinate Gods, Azuth, fell into the Hells, the Archdevil Asmodeus absorbed his power and used it to fling the Abyss into the Elemental Chaos, and moved the Hells to the Astral Sea, adjacent to the realms of the other Gods.
Celestial: This term is a catchall for beings of holy ancestry. Angels, most Gods, Noble Eladrin (technically) and some other beings of the Astral Sea and the Outer Planes all qualify as Celestials, though some dislike this label (like the Noble Eladrin, who prefer to think of themselves as Fey). Celestials have a tendency to be Good-aligned, though not friendly. Only a select few Celestials have any real concerns for the affairs of mortals, though Gods, at least, are compelled by the Laws of Ao to respect their followers.
Chauntea: The first goddess to be created by natural means instead of direct intervention by Ao or the Primordials. Chauntea is both ancient and overwhelmingly powerful; she controls the all-important portfolio item of agriculture.
Chosen: Among specific mortals, Gods may find traits worth emphasizing. Those mortals who are supernaturally pious, loyal beyond all doubt, and ambitious enough to make a mark on the world, the Gods may select their Chosen. Chosen beings have colossal reserves of personal power as a result of being given their status, though what that power actually is various heavily from deity to deity. Some mortals are given their patron’s wisdom, allowing them to work the mysteries of magic and religion, while others are given immense might and speed. Others yet may simple be able to cast more spells than anybody else of their experience, or forgo the need to prepare them in advance. Regardless of the means by which the power manifests itself, all Chosen have much in common. They barely need to sleep, requiring only nine hours of sleep every three days. They heal quickly, they can pray directly to their patron, and they are largely resistant to most forms of Spellplague corruption.
Creator Races: These five races are the first five known sentient races to have arisen naturally on Toril. They are numbered (in the order in which they appeared) as the Sarrukh, Batrachi, Aearee, Silvan Fey, and Humans. It is possible that an earlier form of these five races is an evolved form of the civilization called the Rauth (possibly a shortened form of Andorauth), who are known to have first developed agriculture. Other races, such as Dragons, Elves, Dwarves, and Orcs, evolved on other worlds and were brought (or exiled) to Toril, and are not counted as Creators despite their age. The name stems from the fact that all five races have existed on Toril long enough to have created offshoot races of their own.
Daemon: These strange Fiends are the middle ground between demons and devils. Less numerous than either and quite smart, they are generally the toughest individually, and care not one bit for the troubles of others. They often rent their services out to other Fiends as mercenaries. The various forms of daemon, however, are not naturally occurring beings of the planes, like most demons. They are the creations of the Baernaloths, bizarre beings of primordial evil, which predate any remaining forms of elemental evil in the multiverse. Daemons are secretive and violent, untrusting of each other and their own kind, and their means of reproduction are mysterious at best, though they can torture a petitioner into a form like their own, as with all fiends save Incubi and Nupperibos.
Dark Elves: This near-extinct subrace of elves are returning to the world, because of the hard work of several specific drow and human mages – and the sacrifice of the Sharn creatures – at the beginning of the Spellplague. Some few tens of thousands of dark elves were cured of the demonic taint in their blood, some without knowing it, and reverted to their natural appearance, with chocolate skin, black hair, and black eyes. Despite their name, Dark Elves are not inherently evil, nor do they rely on the Shadow Weave, though they are predisposed towards arrogance.
Dark Seldarine: Those deities of the Drow that preside over their lives, in far greater granularity and scale than the Seldarine do for the general population of elvenkind. Eilistraee is technically a member of the Dark Seldarine, though she openly detests their majority of members, save perhaps her younger brother Vhaeraun. The leader of the Dark Seldarine is Lolth, the Evil Queen of Demons and Spiders, though her power over demons is limited to her own creations, and she is nowhere near the mightiest of the demon lords. Over the drow, her power is near absolute. Only Ghaunadaur, the Slime Lord, has any real power amongst most drow aside from Lolth, at least in the Underdark.
Demon: The demons are the chaotic side of evil Fiends. These beings are the latest inhabitants of the Abyss, a pocket plane and afterlife devoted to the utmost evils. Souls of evil mortals (and unlucky evil immortals) fall into the Abyss after death if their souls followed no code or laws in life, where they are (once captured) stripped of their memories and transformed into monstrous larvae. These larvae are then used as a food source, foot soldier, plaything, and currency by the higher demons, until after many thousands of years, the larvae molt into true demons, of higher thought processes and power. Gradually these demons may transform themselves ever higher up the hierarchy of the demonic life forms, until they are distinct from all others. Some very few demons (experts speculate fewer than five hundred out of the untold billions of demons) even become Lord Demons, which are unique, and control the layers of the Abyssal Plane. Some demons are created by other means, such as when devils or daemons defect to the Abyss and are transformed by a patron. Most notably, the entire Devil clade of Succubae recently underwent this shift, for reasons unknown. Demons can also abduct souls from the Fugue Plane’s vast queue and torture them until they become larvae, though the other forces of the planes are understandably unlikely to allow this if they can stop it.
Devil: Devils are the lawful side of evil in the fiendish realms. Able to think, plan, coordinate, and cooperate on a scale far greater than that of demons, devils have a rigid hierarchy, and can generally be trusted to follow their contracts with mortals to the letter (though rarely in the way mortals expect). Devils are sometimes referred to as Bateezu, though this is actually the original name of the race that inhabited the realm of Batu, which Asmodeus conquered from its incomprehensibly alien and monstrous creators eons ago. The very lowest form of Bateezu, the Nupperibo, is actually the larval form of the Ancient Bateezu, and when one is found, it is usually eaten or tortured into being a Lemure instead, since a return of the Ancient Bateezu would be catastrophically harmful to the current power structure of the Hells.
Drow: A race of elves, long corrupted by a monstrous Balor and the evil Goddess Lolth into ash-skinned, white-haired subterranean beings. The drow live in a largely matriarchal society, rich in magic and resources, but savage fighting and constant betrayals dominate their culture. They follow deities referred to as the Dark Seldarine, the evil fey Gods, and live in massive cities in the Underdark. These cities are fueled by slaves, magic, and the favor of specific planar beings, making them unstable, to say the least.
Eilistraee: A Goddess of the Dark Seldarine, and its only unambiguously good member. This patroness of the Dark Elves and Drow who have escaped the clutches of the other Dark Seldarine (mostly Lolth and Ghaunadaur) is a lover of dance, creativity, and freedom. She often appears to her followers in the form of a dancing flame in a fey shape, or appears in the dreams of her more devoted followers. She has also been known to appear in person to hunters at night, darting nude through the woods in the form of a nine-foot tall dancing woman, guiding them to their targets. Her followers prefer bows and bastard swords in battle, and they find the taboos other sects and organizations have against nudity to be silly, though they can suppress that feeling in places dominated by other faiths. A good friend to nearly all the Gods of family, freedom, and love, she enjoys positive relationships with most of the world’s various pantheons, not the least of reasons for which being that her followers are oath-bound to aid others in travel and hunting if they ask, and the non-judgmental views she holds of elves who do not answer to her. Noble, carnal, musical, and accepting, Eilistraee serves as the watch-warden for those who oppose the Spider. She has very few followers in the Underdark, thanks to her evil mother Lolth.
Eladrin: Once quite rare in the mortal world, the Eladrin people have undergone a great resurgence of late, because of permanent portals between Arvandor (the elf afterlife), the Feywild (the home plane of many fey, including elves) and Toril stabilizing. This race of High Elves views themselves as the world’s last true cultural authority on magic, and have the arrogance to match. The fact that the long-destroyed empires of elves and eladrin on Toril fell as a result of their own hubris is a fact most eladrin simply ignore. These are not to be confused with Noble Eladrin, an entirely separate race. Elves and eladrin live far longer and age far slower than the vast majority of races.
Elf: This word encompasses a vast array of races and sub-races, all of which are known as elves. With the eladrin, from whom elves evolved, the elf people are collectively known as the Tel-Quessar, though only the fey themselves would ever consider using that many syllables. Elves and eladrin live far longer and age far slower than the majority of races.
Exarch: These are mighty beings, more akin to gods than mortals. The demigods of the true Gods, Exarchs are able to manifest their powers in one or two worshippers, and serve higher powers as emissaries. As these are generally the ascended remains of mortals who have died, it is easy for them to manifest themselves in the Prime Material Plane world, or at least easier for them than it would be for their benefactors.
Faerûn: The continent upon which the city of Waterdeep is built. Faerûn is the second most heavily populated continent in the world, and contains a great many nations and city-states, some with populations in the millions and truly ancient history. It is notable for having been the birthplace of all five of the known Creator Races, and possibly the mysterious civilization that came before them in the time of the Rauth.
Fiend: Fiend is a broad term, which encompasses all of the various, stereotypically evil planar beings from the Hells, the Abyss, and the Rift. Yugoloths, demons, devils, Baatezans, and the truly unclassifiable beasts of the inner Abyss are technically all fiends, and as some mortal souls may transform into these things upon death, some were even once mortal. Even those fiends that ignore the demands and hierarchies of their home planes (which is surprisingly many, especially demons) are unable to ignore the fundamental aspects of their physical existence: they need sustenance as much as any other creature. Whether that sustaining force is metaphysical, as in worship, spiritual, as in souls, or physical, as in blood, they all need something to perpetuate themselves and grow stronger. Some fiends even grow more magically powerful when worshipped like Gods, and in fact three Fiends have ascended to true Godhood in this way (Orcus, Demogorgon, and (or so he claims) Asmodeus).
Fugue Plane: This planar locale is indispensable to the passage of life and death in the world. Though the means of reaching this plane have been tumultuous in the past, thanks to the machinations of Shar and Cyric, the Fugue Plane is currently the place where Kelemvor, God of Death, makes his home. In a vast city, populated by petitioners who claimed a piety they did not hold, the souls of the recent dead – not yet shorn of memories – queue up for judgment. Fiends come and go, with devils and daemons promising mortal souls greater odds of becoming true fiends (in case those souls fear damnation enough that the petitioner in question suspects they’ll go straight to the Hells anyway). Demons simply perform mass kidnapping, dragging petitioners screaming off into the Abyss to be transformed against their will. Naturally, the neutral entities who protect the Fugue Plane (including the former incumbent God of Death, Jergal) protect these souls as best they can. Deities who are aware of the death of their followers will usually claim their worshippers as soon as they die, barely after reaching the Fugue Plane and before reaching Kelemvor. This is to protect them from the attacking Fiends, but also to ensure that they can actually gain their souls, instead of relying on Kelemvor’s sometimes fickle judgment sending them off.
Glyth: A planet in the same system as Toril; barely habitable.
Gods: Gods are beings of immense divine power, able to manifest themselves in the Outer Planes and Astral Sea and shape dimensional pockets to their own liking. Gods are responsible by compact for the well-being of their followers’ souls, and claim them upon death. Specific Gods are bound to portfolios, which are lists of specific facets of existence; these range from simple concepts like forests, to philosophical ideas like proving tyranny superior to meritocracy. Gods often compete for portfolio items. Dead gods are nearly impossible to erase entirely, and it has only been done once, with the Decay Prince Moander. Gods harvest power from the prayers and souls of their worshippers, but painlessly so. The very mightiest Gods, like Selûne and Chauntea, have existed from the dawn of time, and have tens of millions of followers.
Heaven: A term used to describe specific afterlives of relative peace and comfort, as opposed to the majority. Nearly all the heavens are located in the Astral Sea, which may stem from the fact that the Sea can be manipulated by the thoughts of powerful beings (such as the Gods that administrate the afterlives).
The Hells: Nine inter-connected planar layers of a realm known as Bateezu, the Nine Hells are the ultimate fate of the souls of the dead that were unambiguously evil, but did follow a personal code. Devils dwell here by the billions, plotting and scheming against each other, though all ultimately answer to Asmodeus, the Supreme Archdevil and Grand Duke of Damnation. Each of the nine layers of the Hells, such as Nessus, is wildly different from the others, and the Archdevil who administrates it shapes each.
Helm: A God of defenders and guards, Helm is a dour and quiet God, but a tough and vigilant warrior. His cult suffered some losses after the Avatar Crisis, when duty compelled him to kill the Goddess of magic, but it has rebounded after the Spellplague.
High Succubus: A deliberate snub to his own former slaves, Asmodeus created the High Succubae to serve as the new foci of lustful sin amongst mortals and his own court. Given powers far greater than that of the former Succubae, Asmodeus sought to replace them with their superiors. While a Succubus of the old clade would have mighty powers of seduction and disguise but little combat skill, a High Succubus is as much a fighter as a rapist. Each is a perfect physical copy of the others, down to blink pattern and hair growth, and each has a wider array of powers than the old clade of Succubae, which defected en masse to the Abyss following the Devils’ unexpected victory in the Blood War. Their Queen, the strongest of their number and the only one with different physical appearance, can exert some control over individual members of the clade, but all ultimately serve one of the Archdevils, while the Queen serves Asmodeus himself.
Ilmater: This mighty deity is a major player in the religions of Toril, and is the patron of martyrs. Those who are driven by religion to sacrifice themselves for the greater good, and martyrs of all sorts, look to him as a protector. Referred to as The God On The Rack, this steward of torture victims and sacrifice victims is known to be a quiet and nonjudgmental deity, though when roused to true rage (usually against the servants of Loviatar), his followers can number in the hundreds of millions worldwide, and thanks to their training to ignore pain and work together, can face down nearly any common foe. Ryaire and other demigods and Exarchs serve him and tend to the parts of the House of the Triad over which the main participants do not preside in person.
Incubus: This relatively rare demon (formerly devil) is effectively the male personification of lust, and is just as dangerous to a female mortal as a Succubus is to a male mortal. Why they are rarer nobody but they know, but their skillset is largely the same. Incubi have the same limited telepathy and flight abilities of a Succubus, and their touch is just as fatal. Incubi always work alone when possible, and are slightly more likely to employ violence than a Succubus, if only because they are less likely to be recognized as a demon than a Succubus would be. Incubi find it overwhelmingly pleasurable to use their seductive skill to lure women into compromising positions, and then let their disguise melt away and rape their victims’ lives out, in some contrast to Succubae, who prefer to kill their targets with a minimum of toying around.
Invoker: A being with an innate and in-born connection to the divine, and able to cast sells with greater speeds than a cleric. Invokers are generally not welcome in large congregations with more rigid hierarchies, but are quite powerful in battle, if less versatile than their Cleric brethren are.
Kelemvor: A powerful young God. Keemvor is the judge of the dead, the administrator of the Fugue Plane, and the overseer of the process of dismissing souls to their afterlives. His clerics are foreboding figures of mystical power, and each staunchly opposes undeath.
Lolth: A purely evil patroness Goddess of Spiders, Drow, and evil elves, Lolth schemes eternally to destroy the pantheon of the Seldarine, which governs the religion of the fey and elvish races. Lolth’s power has grown dramatically over the last one hundred twenty five years, but it has driven her followers in the Underdark and on the surface to scheme against each other with such vigor that it nearly brought about the destruction of their civilization. Her followers plotted against each other to the exclusion of maintenance of their own cities. However, though her followers are more a danger to each other than the outer world, the sheer number of the Spider Queen’s followers make her a genuine and significant threat to the stability and peace of the rest of the planet, and they cheerfully enslave hundreds of thousands of others for their own labor shortages without a second thought.
Lords’ Alliance: A coalition of the aristocracy and rulers of over a dozen major cities on and inland from the Sword Coast. They pledge to come to each other’s aid in case of organized attacks from a foe, and collect small dues to support shared infrastructure.
Lords of Waterdeep: A council of twenty-four (or more) masked power brokers in the city of Waterdeep. These rich and powerful folks serve as a force of anonymous leadership to the city, though stern oversight by the Open Lord, the only one whose identity is public knowledge, usually prevents nepotism and corruption. Masked Lords have been anything from moneylenders to wizards to retired soldiers to adventurers, and even mercantile princes. They vote on the topics of the day in council, and pass laws, though they favor keeping the rates of operation for the city as low as possible. The Open Lord serves as a tiebreaker and can formally request a new Lordship be created, though this is usually only done if a previous Lord has been killed or otherwise permanently incapacitated. Few Lords succumb to real corruption, though few resist self-interest entirely.
Loviatar: This divine servant of the evil God Bane is one of the cruelest beings in all of the Realms. With sociopathic disregard for the well-being of others and fanatic loyalty to Bane, she uses her position as his subordinate to spread her hateful cruelty over the world, and is the highest enemy of the Triad and their subordinates.
Menzoberranzan: A colossal and ancient city of drow in the deep Underdark. This chaotic and violent city is self-divided into matrilineal, hierarchical castes, each populated by tens of thousands of drow. Non-drow are also common as slaves and mercenaries. Mystic schools of magic and poison-crafting allow for the priestesses of Lolth to maintain some semblance of control over the fractious population.
Netheril: A long-abandoned empire of magic-wielding humans, Netheril is most notable for being the civilization with the most complete understanding of magic, though magic itself has fundamentally changed since the collapse of Netheril (and indeed, partially because of the events that caused that destruction). Netherese arcanists and wizards were the first to discover the unimaginable power of 10th and 11th level spells, and the only known 12th level spell; however, nearly all magic above the 9th level has been permanently outlawed by the Goddess of magic.
Paladin: A holy warrior, imbued with the power of a deity or other great power. The Paladins of a religious order generally protect the clerics and priests of the faith, defend specific locales, and pursue oaths of defense and allegiance towards specific religious authorities. In return, they are granted powerful divine magic, of both healing and defensive combat varieties. Paladins must uphold their Oath, and failure to do so will result in (eventually) a Fall. When a Paladin Falls, their powers are stripped away, and without repentance and a quest of absolution, they will never return.
Petitioner: This term refers to the thing into which a soul transforms after death in the vast majority of circumstances. After a deity claims the soul of a worshipper (or, if no claim is made and the soul is evil, it is sent off to the Abyss or the Hells or the Blood Rift. Alternatively, the soul may be trapped in the Fugue Plane), the soul is stripped of its old identity, and given a new one, along with a new body that suits the plane to which it was sent. Non-elf petitioners in Arvandor, for instance, will receive elf bodies, slaves damned to the Hells will become Lemures or Nupperibos, et cetera. These bodies do not generally age.
Plane: One of several parallel dimensions, each with its own rules and laws of science, or none at all. The farther from the Prime Material Plane(s) one travels, the more the world around them is dictated by thought alone, and at the very farthest reaches of all metaspace, the multiverse does not resemble the Prime at all, but instead is a horrifying and incomprehensible mess of unspeakable monsters and alien intelligences.
Prime Material Plane World: The Prime is the world of mortal life, as humans know it. Of all the planes, this is the one in which imagination and creativity play the least role in shaping. While outer planes can be reshaped and redefined by thought alone, the Prime is immutable to thought, and can only be shaped by mundane or magical forces. As it is the birthplace of hundreds of millions of mortals, the Gods compete viciously for worship here, as do Fiends and Abominations.
Primordial: The Primordials are god-like beings, though not actually gods. Each Primordial represents a facet of the early existence of the Prime Material Plane, though that may be as abstract as ‘bad dreams’ or ‘giants.’ The Primordials were soundly defeated at the beginning of civilization, first by the gods, then by dragons, and have almost all retreated to their own world of Abeir.
Psion: An individual with psychic power. Though more stable than magic, psionic powers are far more obscure, thanks to the requirement of a certain degree of inborn ability that a wizard need not have. A psionicist is a person who studies psionic power, and may not practice it personally.
Ryaire: [RYE-air] A skilled but exceptionally young Demigoddess in the service of Ilmater. Ryaire was a half-elf woman in life, but after she was sacrificed to an evil cult, she returned to life with Ilmater’s help in the form of a monstrous, wrathful beast, which proceeded to slaughter the entire cult. Ilmater eventually gave her the status of Exarch for her unbreakable piety and sense of right and wrong. During the Avatar Crisis, she was forced into mortal form, but unlike most, she welcomed it. She wedded a devoted follower she had known as a mortal, and became pregnant with his child. After giving birth, the two ascended to the heavens, leaving the baby boy, Solen, with a friendly priest of Ilmater. Her church has a formal motto: 'Tuetur Innocens,' or 'Shield Innocence.'
Selûne: A mighty goddess, and one of the first two to have ever existed. Selûne is the moon goddess, and is also in control of stars, comets, navigators, and the few good anthropes and shapeshifters. As one of the three oldest beings in all of the Prime, with her sister Shar and the Overgod Ao, Selûne has an understandably vast cult, immense powers, and is one of the few gods to be worshipped by name outside Faerûn.
Sharess: The goddess of sex, lust, and young lovers, Sharess has an understandably large following, though it is easy for the uninformed to dismiss her as a mere harlot queen. In fact, she is a philosophical woman, who urges her clergy especially to consider the spiritual and physical needs of their flock in their daily actions, and to help soothe the tempers that arise in the tumult of young love. A close friend of Selûne and Sune (goddesses of light and beauty, respectively), she often accompanies them on visits to the secluded and peaceful planes where no conflict may spread; just to be apart from the chaos of the planes for a time.
Skullport: A city beneath a city, Skullport is an underground city built into a colossal cave beneath Waterdeep, between the Sword Sea and the Undermountain. Ruled by monstrous Beholders and a crime syndicate, it is home to an enormous black market and extensive refugee traffic between the Underdark and Waterdeep, as well as Undermountain and the secret network of the Horizon Syndicate.
Spare the Dying: A spell that allows the caster to prevent a dying person from actually passing away, though its effectiveness drops off sharply, the more time passes after the fatal wound.
Spell Levels: The spell level system is a means of tracking the relative power and complexity of magic. The very lowest-level spells are called Cantrips, and can be cast freely, usually without somatic or physical components. Above them are the 0th level spells, which rarely do any damage to the target, but may illuminate a large area or help solve a problem. 1st level spells begin to require verbal or physical spell components, while 2nd through 6th level spells are ever more complex and difficult, some with long casting times or complex ritual incantations. 7th through 9th level spells are considered extraordinarily difficult, and can only be performed by dedicated, career spellcasters. 10th, 11th, and the near-mythical 12th level spells are expressly banned by the Goddess of Magic, though this is a relatively recent directive. Two other forms of magic exist, being Epic magic and High magic, which follow different rules. High Magic is considered to be independent of the spell level system, and allows the (invariably elvish) caster to perform feats of land-shaping or magic-weaving potency far beyond normal magic power, while Epic Magic is simply a unique, non-reproducible feat of magic that does not rely on the traditional magic categorization system, and may be incredibly difficult and expensive.
Succubus: Perhaps the most commonly encountered Fiend in the mortal realms; Succubae are female sex demons, though they were devils once. They can lure mortal men to their death with a touch that can kill, if the victim is not suspecting of it. Their kiss can drain souls and use them for sustenance, though the soul is then discarded and allowed to drift off into the afterlife most of the time (though notably not always, if the Succubus fancies herself a necromancer and wishes to use the soul’s remains as a battery for a spell). They also possess mighty claws that they can retract, and some elder Succubae develop bat-like wings. Their physical strength is considerable, as it would need to be to restrain and rape mortal men, though some Succubae are so skilled at seduction that this becomes unnecessary. Succubae can disguise themselves as mortals when they need to, though their voices are hard to hide and require effort to conceal. It is a common myth that Succubae have the ability to give any man who survives mating with them infinite pleasure and even their obedience, but this is a legend the Succubae themselves spread to lure in foolhardy men. Surviving the sex of a Succubus is impossible. Indeed, should a Succubus capture a mortal man in such a place that she could rape him at her leisure, she would rarely choose to do so, instead preferring to kiss their soul out as quickly as possible and leave before discovery. Smarter Succubae can also exert limited mind control over men, to force them to obey long enough to set up a cult of sorts.
Tarrasque: A mighty and unique monster, able to destroy a city with ease.
Thay: A nation of sorcery and necromancy, reviled by its neighbors for its dependence on undead. Agents of its ruling cabal, the Red Wizards, are troublemakers in several other lands.
Theurge: A person capable of casting both divine and arcane magic.
Tiamat: A mighty and evil goddess of chromatic dragons. Tiamat’s power has waned over the years, but she has been surprisingly successful at establishing cults to worship her.
Trance: Trancing is a biological process fey and elves undertake to replenish their bodies, like sleep, only without unconsciousness.
The Triad: This group of three mighty Gods of Good is one of the powerhouses of the Realms. Consisting of Torm, Ilmater, and Tyr, the three deities of the Triad represent the allegiance of most Paladins in the world, and are the central force for divine Good in the world (though followers of Lathander and Mystra might protest that). Together with Helm, Bahamut, and other, lesser deities of Good, they maintain Celestia, the largest good-aligned afterlife. None fear confrontation, and all three deities have taken to battle against the cruelties of Fiends and evil Gods in the past.
Turn Undead: A magic spell, the effect of which is to instill fear and panic in unliving things, driving them away from the caster, and can inflict damage when cast in a specific way.
Umberlee: The Bitch Queen and goddess of sea storms, Umberlee is a powerful and destructive force in the world. She is, after the goddesses of magic, light, and dark, arguably the most active deity in the world of Toril, since she has direct authority over much of the world’s oceans.
Undermountain: A colossal, unmapped, and horrifically dangerous subterranean complex of traps, laboratories, monsters, magic, criminals, warring Underdark tribes, and wizards, Undermountain is the most dangerous place in the world. It stands without compare as the largest single structure in the world, and was once the residence of the mad mage Halaster Blackcloak.
Waterdeep: The third-largest and by far the most metropolitan city for three thousand miles in every direction, Waterdeep is THE hub of adventuring, commerce, and research in north Faerûn. This colossal city houses well over a million souls, and projects commercial and military force over much of the surrounding land, though its ability to enforce laws outside the castle walls extends a mere few stops down the caravan trails, thanks to noxious swamps and troll problems.
Xvim: The now-deceased son of the god Bane.
|The tale of the Holy Opposites ||
|Arc 1: | Prologue | Chapter 1 | Chapter 2 | Chapter 3 | Chapter 4 | Chapter 5 |
Chapter 6 | Chapter 7 | Chapter 8 | Chapter 9 | Chapter 10
|Arc 2: | Chapter 11 | Chapter 12 | Chapter 13 | Chapter 14 | Chapter 15 |
Chapter 16 | Chapter 17 | Chapter 18 | Chapter 19 | Chapter 20
Chapter 21 | Chapter 22 | Chapter 23 | Chapter 24 | Chapter 25
|Arc 3: | Chapter 26 | Chapter 27 | Chapter 28 | Chapter 29 | Chapter 30|
|Arc 4: | Chapter 31 | Chapter 32 | Chapter 33 | Chapter 34 | Chapter 35 |
Chapter 36 | Chapter 37 | Chapter 38 | Chapter 39 | Glossary