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Myrkul, also known as the Lord of Bones and the Lord of the Dead, was the god of the dead in the Faerûnian pantheon. He was one of the Dark Three alongside Bhaal, the god of murder, and Bane, god of fear, hatred and tyranny. Myrkul's portfolio, and his home, the Bone Castle, were both usurped by Cyric after the Lord of Bones was destroyed atop Blackstaff Tower in Waterdeep during the Time of Troubles by Midnight. Later Myrkul's portfolio passed to Kelemvor when Cyric was driven from the City of Strife by an alliance of deities and denizens.
Myrkul had a cold, malignant intelligence, and spoke in a high whisper. He was always alert, never slept, and was never surprised. He was never known to lose his temper or be anything other than coldly amused when a mortal succeeded in avoiding his directives or chosen fates. His influence in Faerûn was imposed through fear, and he was a master of making mortals terrified of him through his words and deeds. At times, just to remain unpredictable, he seemed almost kind and caring. His cowled skull head was known in nightmares all over Faerûn, and he was the one deity that almost all human mortals could picture clearly. Myrkul took care that all mortals thought of him often - he was even known to materialize beside open graves, scythe in hand, just to gaze around at gathering mourners for a few silent seconds before fading away, in order to remind everyone that he was waiting for them all.
The clergy of Myrkul were charged to make folk fear and respect death and the power of the almighty Myrkul so that no one stood against the church or tried to thwart its activities. Myrkul's priests were expected to spread the word that touching a priest of Myrkul brings death. They were expected to tell all folk that those in the service of Myrkul had perfect patience and could be trusted utterly - then conduct themselves accordingly. Myrkulyte clergy were to teach the stories of past and future doombringers - mortals who roamed the land avenging dead friends, masters, and blood kin to whom they had sworn oaths, and slaying those who scoffed or who held other gods supreme over the Lord of Bones.
Initiates to the faith first heard the word of Myrkul through a speak with dead spell cast on a temple's most revered deceased former high priest. Such spells allowed all within hearing range to comprehend the corpse's words.
As a mortal, Myrkul's full name and title is said to have been Myrkul Bey al-Kursi, Crown Prince of Murghôm. Myrkul was a powerful adventuring necromancer in his mortal years, traveling with Bane and Bhaal, dedicated each to a quest to attain divinity for themselves. They traveled to the citadel of Jergal who, luckily for them was tiring of his existence as lord of the end of everything. Breaking off his skeletal knucklebones after an argument over which of the three would rule over the other two, they were each thrown by the mortals to determine which of Jergal's portfolios they would receive. Malar tried and failed to interrupt this game. The end result was Myrkul gaining the portfolio of the Dead. Jergal served Myrkul as an aide for a time until Myrkul had settled into his new role.
Many years later, Myrkul again allied himself with Bane and the two dark gods conspired to steal the Tablets of Fate from the overgod Ao, in hopes that the loss of these tablets would weaken the overgod enough that he could be overthrown. The overgod responded to the theft by casting all the gods from the planes and into Toril, stripping their divine powers in the process. Only Helm was allowed to keep his divine abilities, and the God of Guardians stood watch over the Celestial Stairways, where he barred all deities from entering the planes, and waited for the tablets to be recovered and delivered to him and Ao.
Following the destruction of both Bane and Bhaal, Myrkul attacked Midnight, Kelemvor and Elminster atop Blackstaff Tower in Waterdeep, hoping his minions would provide enough distraction while he would forcefully seize the Tablets of Fate. But the mortal mage Midnight, infused with the power of the dead Mystra would slay the Lord of Bones before he could make good his escape.
Some of the defeated god's essence was siphoned into an artifact contained in the Tower called the Crown of Horns, which he quickly teleported away. The artifact was once in the possession of Nhyris D'Hothek, a yuan-ti from Skullport, but has since abandoned its user, and to this day the spirit of Myrkul endures in the form of this powerful, sentient, artifact. His undead host in Waterdeep would in the end be defeated through the combined effort of the city watch and Khelben Arunsun.
|“||Know me and fear me. My embrace is for all and is patient but sure. The dead can always find you. My hand is everywhere - there is no door I cannot pass, nor guardian who can withstand me.||”|
|This article or section is about elements from the Neverwinter Nights series of games.
Video games are considered canon unless they contradict content in some other Forgotten Realms publication.
In Neverwinter Nights 2: Mask of the Betrayer Myrkul's High priest, Akachi once led a revolt against Myrkul in the City of Judgement when Myrkul sentenced Akachi's lover to the Wall of the Faithless. The revolt failed and Myrkul punished the priest for aeons. Sentencing his tortured soul to infest the bodies of others and feed on the spirits of his homeland until the host body itself was devoured from the insatiable hunger this curse caused. In the game it is possible for the newest bearer of this curse to devour the remaining essence of Myrkul, thus ending the deity's influence on the Realms. However, Myrkul did not even understand the logic behind the curse, as he was marveled at his own cruelty, he could not even see its flaws. Akachi's curse was born of loss; loss of sentience, soul, self and will. However, Akachi's sense of identity and self were not completely destroyed, for if they were then there would be no hunger. After Akachi was reduced from a man to an abomination by the wall, his soul lived on in the fragments of an ancient mask (most likely some kind of Rashemi War Mask that he wore during the revolt). The fragments of the mask were lost in several dreamscapes and if found and returned to Akachi the warrior-priest would be able to regain part of his soul and through that the Curse could be ended forever.
When Myrkul was interrogated deeply about the origins of the Spirit Eater, after a point made by the protagonist, he admits that the curse was a contingency plan orchestrated so that he might be remembered and his evil deeds would linger even as he was condemned to the decay of his own sphere of power. This plan was similar to Bhaal's own, when he impregnated many females of different species with his children so that they might work towards his rebirth after his death during the Godswar ( Time of Troubles). After being questioned by the player, the player is then given the choice of subjecting Myrkul to the power of the Curse. The player can consume Myrkul's soul using the Devour Spirit power, or he can use the Eternal Rest ability to destroy Myrkul's ember of a soul utterly. They can also let One of Many devour him; it leads to Myrkul taking over the construct and attacking player, but if player prevails and spares One of Many, dead god's soul is supressed and not allowed to take control again. The god is consumed with great fear but despite what happens Myrkul's last thoughts are that of precious irony, the irony that he had treasured so dearly during his godhood. As he is now destroyed by the very thing he created to keep him alive.
Behind the ScenesEdit
Dungeons & Dragons 5th edition (2014)Edit
Myrkul, along with his cohorts Bhaal and Bane, are restored to their original status levels and assume the pantheon of the Forgotten Realms in Dungeons and Dragons 5th edition.
- Eric L. Boyd, Erik Mona (May 2002). Faiths and Pantheons. (Wizards of the Coast). ISBN 0-7869-2759-3.
- ↑ 1.0 1.1 1.2 1.3 Kim Mohan ed. (2015). Sword Coast Adventurer's Guide. (Wizards of the Coast), pp. 21,35. ISBN 978-0786965809.
- ↑ Richard Baker, Ed Bonny, Travis Stout (February 2005). Lost Empires of Faerûn. (Wizards of the Coast), p. 142. ISBN 0-7869-3654-1.
- ↑ 3.0 3.1 Mike Mearls, Jeremy Crawford (2014). Player's Handbook 5th edition. (Wizards of the Coast), p. 294. ISBN 978-0-7869-6560-1.
- ↑ Mike Mearls, Jeremy Crawford, Christopher Perkins, James Wyatt (2014). Dungeon Master's Guide 5th edition. (Wizards of the Coast), pp. 96–97. ISBN 978-0786965622.
- ↑ Richard Baker, Ed Bonny, Travis Stout (February 2005). Lost Empires of Faerûn. (Wizards of the Coast), p. 41. ISBN 0-7869-3654-1.
- ↑ Julia Martin, Eric L. Boyd (March 1996). Faiths & Avatars. (TSR, Inc), p. 124. ISBN 978-0786903849.
- ↑ Colin McComb (1996). On Hallowed Ground. (TSR, Inc), p. 182. ISBN 0-7869-0430-5.
- ↑ Eric L. Boyd (1997). Powers and Pantheons. (TSR, Inc), pp. 31–32. ISBN 0-7869-0657-X.
- ↑ 9.0 9.1 Richard Baker, Ed Bonny, Travis Stout (February 2005). Lost Empires of Faerûn. (Wizards of the Coast), p. 43. ISBN 0-7869-3654-1.
- ↑ Brian R. James and Matt James (September 2009). “Monument of the Ancients”. In Chris Youngs ed. Dungeon #170 (Wizards of the Coast), p. 80.
- ↑ Troy Denning (July 2003). Waterdeep. (Wizards of the Coast). ISBN 0-7869-3111-6.
Azuth • Bane • Bhaal • Chauntea • Cyric • Gond • Helm • Ilmater • Kelemvor • Kossuth • Lathander • Loviatar • Mask • Mielikki • Myrkul • Mystra (Midnight) • Oghma • Selûne • Shar • Shaundakul • Silvanus • Sune • Talos • Tempus • Torm • Tymora • Tyr • Umberlee • Waukeen
Akadi • Auril • Beshaba • Deneir • Eldath • Finder Wyvernspur • Garagos • Gargauth • Grumbar • Gwaeron Windstrom • Hoar • Istishia • Iyachtu Xvim • Jergal • Lliira • Lurue • Malar • Milil • Nobanion • The Red Knight • Savras • Sharess • Shiallia • Siamorphe • Talona • Tiamat • Ubtao • Ulutiu • Valkur • Velsharoon
|Deities of the Era of Upheaval|
|Ao the Overgod|
|Greater Deities of Faerûn|
|Angharradh | Bane | Chauntea | Corellon Larethian | Cyric | Garl Glittergold | Gruumsh | Horus-Re | Kelemvor | Lathander | Moradin | Mystra | Oghma | Shar | Silvanus | Sune | Talos | Tempus | Tyr | Yondalla|
|Intermediate Deities of Faerûn|
|Abbathor | Arvoreen | Baervan Wildwanderer | Berronar Truesilver | Beshaba | Callarduran Smoothhands | Clangeddin Silverbeard | Cyrrollalee | Deep Duerra | Deep Sashelas | Dumathoin | Erevan Ilesere | Flandal Steelskin | Gond | Hanali Celanil | Helm | Ilmater | Isis | Labelas Enoreth | Laduguer | Lolth | Mask | Mielikki | Nephthys | Osiris | Rillifane Rallathil | Sehanine Moonbow | Segojan Earthcaller | Selûne | Set | Sharindlar | Sheela Peryroyl | Solonor Thelandira | Thoth | |Tymora | Umberlee | Urdlen | Vergadain|
|Deities of the Age of Humanity|
|Ao the Overgod|
|Major Deities of Faerûn|
|Angharradh | Bane | Bhaal | Chauntea | Corellon Larethian | Garl Glittergold | Gruumsh | Horus-Re | Lathander | Moradin | Myrkul | Mystra | Oghma | Shar | Silvanus | Sune | Talos | Tempus | Tyr | Yondalla|
|Other Deities of Faerûn|
|Auppenser | Abbathor | Arvoreen | Auril | Baervan Wildwanderer | Berronar Truesilver | Beshaba | Callarduran Smoothhands | Clangeddin Silverbeard | Cyrrollalee | Deep Duerra | Deep Sashelas | Dumathoin | Erevan Ilesere | Flandal Steelskin | Gond | Hanali Celanil | Helm | Ilmater | Isis | Labelas Enoreth | Laduguer | Lolth | Mask | Mielikki | Nephthys | Osiris | Rillifane Rallathil | Sehanine Moonbow | Segojan Earthcaller | Selûne | Set | Sharindlar | Sheela Peryroyl | Solonor Thelandira | Thoth | Tymora | Umberlee | Urdlen | Vergadain|