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Their close association with the Negative Energy plane attracted wild and ruthless individuals to become ghul lords.
These individuals often carried the stigma of being sinister people who tampered with the dead. This was not entirely true. Ghul lords were simply wizards who chose an abnormal path toward power that most conventional wizards shunned.
Ghul lords tended to choose one of two paths based up their reputation. The first was to act as a speaker for the dead, even though they couldn’t actually communicate with the dead. The second path embraced their sinister reputation, often becoming hunters of other wizards where their unique abilities suited them rather well.
Ghul lords were unique among wizards in that they could use a variety of swords. However, like all other wizards, they never wore armor.
Given their close association with the Negative Plane, ghul lords could use this energy to directly power their spells. The presence of negative energy gave their magic a wicked “feel” while also slightly changing some of the effects.
Each ghul lord actually had their own "special effect" that accompanied any spell they cast. Witnesses to these spells could instantly tell that something was different about the magic at play. The number of possible effects was nearly endless, but all served to distract or frighten many who saw them. Some examples are listed below:
- Whispering- anyone near the ghul lord heard faint whispers of a menacing nature.
- Moaning- voice in great pain could be heard near the caster.
- Dark light- eerie purplish light emanated from the ghul lord, giving him a corpse-like appearance.
- Tears of blood- blood streamed from the ghul lord's eyes while casting
- Transformation- the ghul lord’s face changed to something of great beauty or horrific ugliness.
- Flickering- random lights flashed around the ghul lord while casting a spell.
Established ghul lords learned to understand the powers that animated the dead, granting them the ability to take control of corpses that were animated by someone else. This ability could also be used to turn the undead away from the ghul lord.
Ghul lords were able to manipulate the negative energy they used into spell-like abilities. Every manipulation that a ghul lord learned belonged to one of the following categories: attack, defense, informative, and movement. A manipulation could be very similar to any regular spell available to other wizards, or the ghul lord could adjust the effects, range, etc. of the spell to suit their needs. However, increasing the strength of the manipulation also increased the amount of life force needed to power it.
Manipulations were easy to use but did require a temporary portion of the ghul lord’s life force based upon the power of the manipulation.
Since negative energy was involved in the process, a ghul lord could not use a manipulation that healed or created anything, since the very nature of negative energy prevented this.
There was a chance of a violent reaction, usually in the form of an explosion, when a regular spell and a manipulation collided.
Most ghul lords were not personable individuals. Spending so much time with the dead often left them lacking personal hygiene and normal social skills.
Close association with negative energy also had its effect upon a ghul lord. A ghul lord’s physical strength and health began to deteriorate as they gained power, eventually leaving them resembling a walking corpse.
Ghul lords could only use magical items that were specifically crafted for their kind. The constant presence of negative energy within their bodies made using conventional magical items impossible.