DARKNESS GATHERING: INTERLUDE #6

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“THE FALL OF ASMODEUS”

Sages throughout the centuries have researched the fiends who inhabit the Nine Hells and the Abyss with many different forbidden texts, but the Fiendish Codex and the Books of Vile Darkness provides the most useful information to those seeking the secrets of devils and demons . Asmodeus is one such interesting individual contained in these tomes, and his story is legendary.

According to the Codex, Asmodeus began as a servant of the Law and Good. Asmodeus is described as the bravest, toughest, fiercest and most beautiful of angels. He and the other angels were tasked by the gods to fight the demons of the Abyss, so that the gods could concern themselves with gathering followers and building their power.

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Asmodeus led a cadre of powerful Celestial beings to wage war within the Abyss and lay low the Demon Princes and Queens. This elite cadre included the following powerful Celestials dedicated to Law and Good: Bel, Dispater, Mammon, Belial, Levistus, Moloch, Baalzebul, and Mephistopheles.

After eons of fighting the creatures from the abyss, Asmodeus and some of his cadre began to change. They grew similar in appearance and methods to the demons which they fought. Afraid of his power and of the changes he had undergone, the gods put Asmodeus on trial and demanded that he be cast out of the Upper Planes. However, he argued effectively that he and his cadre had not violated the law. Asmodeus and his fellow Celestials successfully sued for access to the Upper Planes and the honors to which they were entitled. However, the outcome of the trial did revoke Asmodeus and his cadre as rank and status as Angels. They were named Devils, and tasked to begin the Blood War to rid the Abyss of demonkind.

Asmodeus convinced the gods to sign a contract called the Pact Primeval during a Conclave of the Gods. This contract allowed Asmodeus and his fellow devils to take up residence in the abandoned realm of Baator, to punish the souls of wicked mortals, and to extract magical energy from the souls under their care in order to fuel their powers. Otherwise, Asmodeus reasoned, they would have to be granted the powers of godhood in order to do their job, which the current gods would surely find unacceptable.

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In the legends it states that Asmodeus tortured souls in a far off section of the Upper Planes and that when their screams filled the Heavens, the gods once again tried to remove Asmodeus from the Upper Planes by way of Conclave, but by the Pact Primeval Asmodeus was allowed to torture the souls in the Heavens. Asmodeus offered the gods an alternative; give him the power to create his own plane of existence from which to torture the souls that broke heavenly Laws. The gods agreed and Asmodeus and his devils left and founded the Nine Layers of Hell.

In both myths, the gods found the arrangement agreeable, at first. However, they eventually realized that fewer and fewer mortal souls were ascending to the Upper Planes, and Asmodeus was deliberately tempting mortals to damnation. When they arrived in Baator, the gods found that Asmodeus had turned it into a nightmarish world of endless suffering, filled with countless new devils. Although Asomodeus still retained his Lawful nature, it was clear he had begun to follow the paths of Evil. Worse yet, his elite cadre had become vile and dreadful, barely held in control by the merciless leadership of their Lord and Master, Asmodeus.

When called to account for his actions, Asmodeus uttered the famous words, “Read the fine print.

And so, Asmodeus became the Lord of the Nine Hells.

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