Tuesday, 18 November 2008

Govgim Dahl, The Reluctant Demigod

[For the Blog Carnival on religion.]

On a heap of boulders at the base of a cliff in the forest lives Govgim Dahl, a silent, mournful, solitary being whose one true wish is that he would just be left alone. Unfortunately, the world has never shown the intention of doing any such thing, and he has been dogged for all the eons of his existence by unwanted attention from the forest's other inhabitants.

Govgim is a Galeb Duhr among Galeb Duhr; none of his people are as solitary, stubborn, shy or phlegmatic as he. Like them he loathes company and especially cannot bear humans, with their shrill voices and endless chatter. The only sounds he can tolerate are his own deep sonorous humming, and the occasional cracking of rocks weathered by wind or ice.

However, Govgim is a singular Galeb Duhr in one crucial respect: He is unable to travel through stone. This has been the case for as long as he can remember, and he suspects he was born that way - an unfortunate defect that he has come to view as his own particular curse. This one failing means that he has to endure the attentions of the local humans without means of escape; he is too slow to run away, and some basic bedrock of decency within him prevents their casual slaying.

The humans visit him almost every day. The worst occasions are the feast days, when they bother him from morning to night with bonfires and singing, but most mornings and evenings he has to endure a visit from their idiotic priests. He can no longer remember how or why the foolish creatures came to worship him; the very fact that he has forgotten indicates that they have been doing it for thousands of years. He suffers through their ministrations as best he can, by remaining as utterly still and silent as the rocks around him until they become bored and leave him be. Though over time their faithful worship has given him great power, he would much prefer to set it aside in return for a silent life. But release has never been granted to him.

Govgim Dahl

Govgim is a demigod, and so has certain powers described in Legends & Lore. These include 70% magical resistance, base saving throws of '4' in all categories, omniscience within a mile radius, and granted abilities. However, he cannot teleport and has no avatars. He retains the ability to speak, though he never uses it.

He has the standard Galeb Duhr abilities, with the following exceptions:

Armour Class: -4
Hit Dice: 14
Damage/Attack: 6-36/6-36

He cannot cast the passwall spell, but he has all the other magical powers of one of his kind.

Govgim rarely, if ever, displays aggression, but nor does he enjoy communicating. He can sometimes be induced to converse through the gift of a jewel not less than 500gp in value, and he knows the location of lodes of gold in nearby hills.

Govgim's worshipers are ignorant folk who believe that their god protects them from earthquakes and landslides. He does no such thing, and in fact in his darker moments rather wishes that such events would occur. If ever they do - which happens from time to time - the worshipers offer human sacrifices to appease him; generally these are captive travelers passing through the forest, who they capture with lassos or nets. Otherwise they are unremittingly hostile and seek to protect their god through violence. They are deeply inbred, and many of them bear minor mutations such as additional fingers, crossed eyes, or webbed feet.

Cultists of Govgim

Treasure: J, N, Q
No. Appearing: 20-200
Armour Class: 10 to 6 (roll a d4 and armour accordingly)
Hit Dice: 1-6 hp
THAC0: 20
Damage/Attack: 1d6 (Spear, club or handaxe); or Lasso or Net
Morale: Steady (11-12)
XP: 15

For every twenty cultists encountered there will be a cleric with 3HD who casts spells as a 3rd level cleric and has the best armour. If there are fifty cultists or more, there will be an additional cleric with 5HD who casts spells as a 5th level cleric.

If adventurers come across the Cult of Govgim, roll a d6. On a roll of 1-2 there has recently been a landslide, and the cult are searching for human sacrifices. On a roll of 3-6 there have been no natural disasters in recent memory and the cultists are after simple murder.


  1. Great idea. I love the grumpy stone "god" who got left behind by his brothers and now has to suffer the worship of a bunch of squishy things.