The World of Andoria
Titles: That which Lurks, The Elder Eye
Realm: Dismal Caverns
Area(s) of Interest: Abominations
Alignment: Chaotic Evil
Ghaunadaur is an unpredictable Outsider. False worshipers are sometimes rewarded by it, occasionally even with permanent magical boons, but they might just as well have been devoured by the Elder Eye without a second thought. Ghaunadaur enjoyes watching large horrible monsters as they hunt and devoure their prey, causing much suffering. When Ghaunadaur left the Inner Planes he was always silent, but some old records mention a gibbering and bestial language being spoken in the Outsider’s court. When communicating Ghaunadaur uses telepathy and kepts its conversations blunt and simple.
The church of Ghaunadaur consists of cults scattered throughout the Underdark, each dominated by a single individual. There are only a few drow and aboleth cities that serve as exceptions, with a more organized clergy. Ghaunadaur also has an aspect in the tanar’ri lord Juiblex and enjoyed the worship of that guise’s demonic cults. Clerics of Ghaunadaur are required to serve the Elder Eye completely and do whatever pleases it most. The main duty of Ghaundaur’s clerics is to ensure, in any way necessary, that Ghaunadaur’s altars are supplied with a steady supply of sacrifices. Clerics successful in these sacrifices are rewarded with magic power and items.
Ghaunadaur enjoys most of all those creatures that willingly offered themselves to it, whether or not they have been charmed or coerced by its clerics. Those clerics that succeed in bringing willing sacrifices to Ghaunadaur’s altars are its most favored and highest ranked servants. Ghaunadaur encourages its clerics to familiarize themselves with using and creating acids, poisons and alchemist’s fire. All cloth furnishing in the temple and the clothing worn by its worshipers have to be of colors that please Ghaunadaur’s eye. These are mostly shades of purple, green, black, and metallic colors. Many clerics also take training as fighters or enchanters.
Ghaunadaur’s clergy pray for their spells once per day at any time the local cult deems important. The Elder Eye expects each prayer to be coupled with a sacrifice. It prefers living offerings, but when that is impossible it also accepts bones and food which are burned in oil while braziers of perfumed incense are burned as well. If the worshiper can not deliver any offerings to the deity, they are required to perform their prayer while holding one unprotected hand in an open flame.
According to legend, “Ghaunadaur was old even before the All Father’s time.” He is a very ancient outsider, rumored to have emerged from the primordial ooze itself. In that age, it was worshiped by the largest of slimes and other crawling creatures, many of which contained an alien intelligence. In a fit of fury, Ghaunadaur struck most of them mad and took their intellects. As an unforeseen result, many of these worshipers ceased to exist, which caused the Elder Eye’s power to collapse.
Only during the Age of Humanity did some evil beings turn back to Ghaunadaur, looking for an alternative to the established deities. Ghaunadaur was only a member of the drow pantheon during this time because of the worship of drow that became disaffected with Lolth. Ghaunadaur also had aspects in the form of gods who otherwise did not have any influence over the Realms. It was really Ghaunadaur who answered prayers directed at the demon prince Juiblex and the Elder Elemental God as well as those directed at Gormauth Souldrinker.
Ghaunadaur is thought to have no allies, but certainly, this is not always true. Conversely, Ghaunadaur’s list of foes is extensive. He is an enemy of nearly every god associated with the Underdark.
“ All creatures have their place, and all are fit to wield power. Those who hunt weed out the weak and strengthen the stock of all. Those who rebel or who walk apart find new ways and try new things and do most to advance their races. Creatures of power best house the energy of life, which Ghaunadaur reveres and represents. Make sacrifices to the Eye, persuade others to sacrifice themselves to Ghaunadaur or in service of the Eye, further knowledge and fear of Ghaunadaur, and in the end give yourself to Ghaunadaur in unresisting self-sacrifice. Convert all beings to the worship of Ghaunadaur. Slay all clergy of other faiths, plundering their temples and holdings for wealth to better your own lot and to further the worship of Ghaunadaur.
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