Wednesday, January 25, 2012

Legends of Partholon: The Grey Sage, Zagyg

A statue of the Grey Sage
Names & titles: Zagyg, the Grey Sage, the Mad Mage, the Labyrinth Lord, the Catacomb Keeper

Prestige: Demigod or legendary hero

Veneration: He is a patron of magic, moreso of temperance in spellcraft, and wizards claim him as the founder of their tradition. He is commonly invoked for protection from malign spells, and sorcerers call upon him to keep their incantations from drawing otherworldly attention.

He is widely regarded as a champion of the gods of Law, and credited with sealing of the Underworld's many entrances with sprawling labyrinths, filled with tricks and traps to keep the spawn of Chaos locked in their dark world, and to deter those who might be tempted to ally with them.

Perhaps as an extension of this aspect, Zagyg is also deemed a protector of tombs and crypts. Paradoxically, treasure-hunters and tomb-robbers often sacrifice in his name, in hopes of currying guidance and luck, or at least mercy.

However, Zagyg is also called by some "the Mad Mage," and credited with 

Legend: Perhaps because he is such a minor figure, no single, unified version of his legend has yet risen to prominence. The accounts that do exist are so varied as to be contradictory. Some tell that he is the son of, or even the earthly incarnation of, the grey god Grivenar. Others claim that he was an Arkhemean sorcerer-king who repented and abandoned the perpetual struggle for power to pursue a higher calling: crusading against the creatures of Chaos and the Underworld. One version says simply that he came out of the north bearing spells and artifacts to raise a crusade against the vile decadence of Agha-yin and the sorcery of Arkhemea.

Artifacts:  Any rune-sword might be considered an artifact of Zagyg, but he, like any magic-user, was unable to wield them himself. When confronted with physical force, Zagyg often relied on his Serpent Staff.  He would hurl the staff at his foes, or simply throw it down at his own feet, and it would become a great serpent, crushing his enemies in its coils or even devouring them whole. When none still dared oppose him, the serpent would return to his hand and resume its former shape.

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