Heth is a vast Kingdom comprised of low lying wet lands, inhospitable jungles, and desert. Here the Priesthood of the plague god, Xarr, known as The Scabrous One or Father Bloat, rules every aspect of life. For the people of Heth disease had become a way of life and with no god able to protect them they turned their obeisance to their tormentor. And the plagues became less frequent, the sick were treated with reverence, and the most faithful seemed to suffer the least.
Heth has become a place of terrible cringing misery, where a broken people toil tending to great open air temples filled with roiling vats of leeches and skies darkened by flies. Heth is a diseased land that will not die and a place of true horror. It is perhaps small wonder that the greater expansionist powers that surround it have shown little desire to encompass Heth.
Xarr, The Plague LordEdit
Titles: The Scabrous One, Father Bloat'
Alignment: Neutral Evil
Archetype: The Stranger Portfolio: Disease, Healing, Decay, Vermin
Domains: Death, Evil, Healing, Madness, Plant
Favored Weapon: Heavy Pick
Holy Symbol: A circle of five purple buboes - often depicted oozing.
Xarr is a god who sees his primary followers as the diseases he creates and nurtures, humans are only of value to him to carry and spread his diseases. Perhaps because of his mastery of diseases Xarr is acknowledged as the greatest healer known - on occasion he has both created diseases that effect gods and been forced to cure some of those gods. He also nurtures all manner of disease carrying vermin - and indeed counts most intelligent races amongst their number. Xarr sees death as a natural part of life to be embraced, though he is prepared to offer his followers services as healers to those who worship him and thus further the cause of his plagues by spreading vermin and lending him the strength of their faith.
When depicted Xarr is shown as a great fleshy blob whose faith is barely visible within the folds of diseased flesh, he has dozens of long spindly arms each with an eye in the palm with which he uses to experiment in his great laboratory with plagues, viruses, and pestilences.
Titles: Formerly Zalier, 'The City of Flies, The Hole, The Cesspit, Hell
Ruler: The high priesthood of Xarr
A once great city now fetid and disgusting, beautiful buildings are caked in filth and mould, the streets are filled with beggars, the sick, the dying, and corpses. Flies are everywhere and seem to cover everything.
The city was built in a great shallow like a stumpy inverted pyramind and this enables open sewers to slowly ooze down towards the ziggaraut at the cities center. Here at the Temple of Xarr the air is black with flies and lepers tend great pits filled with writhing maggots, and rats run freely in their thousands fed by petitioners and encouraged to gnaw upon the bare feet of those come to plead for the Plague lords favor.
Three hundred years ago the lands that are now Heth were ruled over by the Serpentfolk, and the human populace was forced to embrace the dictates of the Serpent Cult and worship the Horned Serpent Queen Sheketh the Most Ancient. Then a great general arose from, amongst the nomadic desert people, from the Zeire tribe, uniting the desert tribes and driving the Serpentfolk back into the jungle where their ancient strongholds were secreted.
The general Ravran Zeire forged the people into a nation and created Heth. He lead many raids into the jungle and destroyed several great Serpentfolk bastions. Until only a fraction of the already small Serpentfolk population were left alive and those did not dare venture beyond the very heart of the great jungle for centuries... Ravran Ziere died of a plague his men caught when they discovered an ancient artifact in the treasuries of one of the Serpentfolk citadels.
The Zeire line ruled Heth, but none compared to their sire. The new nobility - composed of those of desert stock - quickly became decedent and grew to be hated by the wet lander majority. All the while the plagues that had started with Ravran's death grew more and more virulent and deadly, millions died and the nobility did nothing. Meanwhile the priests of Xarr having seemingly appeared form nowhere began to preach and take hold of the desperate populace.
Seventy years ago the wet landers revolted throwing off the noble's rule and slaughtering them almost to a man - though some few escaped to other lands. And the priesthood of Xarr took over, eventually even cowing the desert tribes some thirty years ago - though they still only pay nominal fealty for the most part.
Sheketh, the Most AncientEdit
Titles: The Horned Serpent Queen
Alignment: Lawful Evil
Archetype: The Consort
Portfolio: Serpents, Slavery, Greed, Undead
Domains: Death, Evil, Law, Magic Scalykind
Favored Weapon: Hunga Munga
Holy Symbol: A horned serpent.
Sheketh is a vast creature a great serpent hundreds of feet long an ancient sorceress who long ago formed the Serpentfolk from the tiny serpents that inhabited the jungles she was banished to. She can hardly bestir herself now, but dwells in the heart of the great jungle brooding over her ancient defeats and attempting to drive her children to enslaving the "lesser" races and forcing their worship to increase her powers.
The following is OOC information that may only be learned in game and likely at very high levels.
Sheketh is not truly a serpent, but is instead a maimed Linnorm, one of the oldest of that race who vied to be their ruler and living god. But she was defeated, her limbs torn from her with magics so powerful even she could not restore them and banished to the festering jungles in what is now Heth. This would be the equiv of an epic knowledge check, but informs her actions to an extent.