Wednesday, September 13, 2017

Campaign Design - The Lords of Hell: Seþra


The Princess of Lies; Mother of Serpents; The Forked Tongue; Eater of Children; Slithering Death; Demon Mistress of Snakes and Deception

Alignment: Chaotic Evil.
Summon Monster: Seþra's clerics and favored souls may summon anarchic and fiendish creatures using summon monster spells.
Symbol: A viper's fangs.
Favored Weapon: "The serpent's fang" (punch-dagger)
Related Prestige Classes: Servant of Seþra.

Seþra is the sinuous and serpentine demonic mistress of enticement, deception, and seduction. In her true form, she appears as a great, brightly colored serpent: Sometimes an emerald green, at others a bright blue and red, and still others a collage of pink, orange, and yellow - but always with the coloration of a venomous creature. When it suits her, Seþra appears as a beautiful woman, but she always has one snake-like feature such as the eyes of a serpent, or fangs, or possibly a forked tongue. She sometimes appears as a set of disembodied floating red serpent eyes - it is in this form that most of her alleged appearances to her followers have taken. No matter what form she takes, Seþra speaks with a beautiful albeit sibilant feminine voice. In her various guises Seþra weaves a fabric of lies, deceptions, and intrigues aimed at securing what she desires.

Unlike some of the other Demon Lords, Seþra is not mighty in battle or possessed of potent mystical capabilities, but relies upon her guile and cunning to pursue her desired ends. Where someone like Darmas or Lug would overwhelm their enemies with physical prowess, or Ishi or Kivutar would ensorcell their foes with might magics, Seþra uses deceit, enticements, and persuasion to convince her victims to carry out her plans, tempting them into following the path she has chosen for them that suits her purposes. This does not mean that she is not deadly - during the War in Heaven it was Seþra whose venom ultimately killed and corrupted Rúadan, and even the combination of Lódur's craftiness and Vali's piercing spear could not overcome Seþra's veil of deception and both were ensnared by her seductive allure. It was not until Hœnir entered the field, with his machine mind invulnerable to Seþra's charms, and swept aside her cloak of entrancement and defeated the Mother of Serpents.

Seþra's followers are connivers, seductresses, temptresses, and conspirators. She is widely worshiped by ophidians of all kinds, from nagas, to yuan-ti, to käälapsi, who regard her as the infernal creator of all serpentine creatures. Her priests are often to be found at the heart of a vast network of spies, informants, and agents, only rarely acting on their own, but rather working through their operatives, most of whom are members of their devoted nest of fellow Seþra-worshipers.

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