Campaign of the Month: October 2010
Wyrmshadow Campaign Setting
One of the many hosts of the Elder God of Death
Nerhul, like many previous iterations of the God of Death, appeared to most people she visited as a spectral skeleton wrapped in loose, tattered black capes and brandishing a scythe. Nerhul floated in the air, her skeletal feet dangling lifelessly beneath her body, and from within the dark sockets of her exposed skull one would see the physical manifestation of the person’s most dreadful fears. However, to the few who gained her confidence and trust, such as some of her fellow Gods and, most notably, the God of Death’s future host, Silas Vale, Nerhul revealed that this image of a horrifying spectre was not her true self but a guise meant to reinforce the harsh realities of death and encourage those alive to embrace life for as long as possible.
When she appeared to Silas Vale after his own demise and selection to be the next host of the God of Death, Nerhul revealed herself to be a youthful young human woman with short, straight black hair, pale skin and piercing silver eyes. She was, in fact, a stunning image to behold, as death is not something evil or dreadful but, as a part of the cycle of life, it is a glorious and beautiful thing.
However, this was not the image she allowed most to see, and as such, the God of Death would continue to be feared and reviled by god and man alike, such fears feeding Nerhul as a sign of faith just as prayers fed the powers of the other Gods.
Before Nerhul was selected to become the next body of Nus, she was a gymnast and dancer in the Continental Cavalcade, a touring group of performers and mystics traveling the world 300 years before the Era of Good Intentions. Her original name was Neraly Kacsvic (pronounced Neh-Rah-Lee Kos-Kah-Vits), and she was merely 15 years of age when a tragic accident led to her death along with the rest of the performers of the Cavalcade. When she was chosen as the new vessel for the thoughts, memories, and powers of the Elder God of Death, she changed her name to Nerhul. Unlike many of the previous hosts, Nerhul made the adjustment to her new role almost immediately, and did so with such incredible talent and enthusiasm that Nerhul lasted over 300 years as the God of Death, a very long time indeed.
Nerhul, also known simply as Death to many, sensed along with the other two Elder Gods the coming of a paradigm, and thus she sought out a new host to replace her when the time came to pass the mantle. Nerhul found a young, frustrated sorcerer named Silas Vale who had been tricked by the archdemon Testament into thinking he was worshipping Nerhul but was actually feeding the power of Testament all along. Through the ruse, and despite his ignorance of it, Silas Vale’s love for Death was very real, and it touched her. He prayed to her in a way that few had ever done, as even those who followed and worshiped Death usually did so out of fear or madness. Feeling his love and faith to be perhaps the truest of all mortals, Nerhul knew she had found her replacement, the man to become the next God of Death.
After the return of the Shadow Knight, the paradigm shift the Elder Gods had anticipated, Nerull was forced to entrust her powers to her new host in an unconventional manner, saving the soul of Silas Vale at the moment of his death and returning him to life twenty years later in a much darker world, with little guidance to his new found powers and responsibilities.
Nerhul would appear once more, as a memory apparition, to a Vale still struggling to come to terms with his divinity. After aiding Vale in accepting his fate as the God of Life and Death, Nerhul would fade into that place all dead gods go, in the memories of the new gods and the gods yet to come.