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Summary::Azter, The Blood Emperor, He Who Swims Time and Space, the Time Devourer and Scion of Hopelessness. The creature known as Azter is known by many epithets, and those which know of him know to fear him as well, for while most Elder Evils are mindless alien beings performing actions beyond any hope of simple morality or sanity, Azter's motives are still grounded in ineffiably sinister thoughts. For once, Azter was a normal creature of its kind, the ancient race of aboleth.
Through a twist of fate this lone aboleth came upon the sunken corporeal body of a long-dead elder evil named Yad-Soth, which had crashed upon the planet of Haven in ages long past from places unknown. Though dead, the nigh-diefic beast's corpse did not rot or age, and over the course of 40,000 years young Azter researched the creature, discovered its powers, its past, the ways it worked.
Perhaps it was a result of researching into things which should not be known, or perhaps it was his own ambition, but it came to pass that Azter would use the body for his own means. Long had it been known that the aboleth were spawn of Piscaethces the Blood Queen, an elder evil of ancient times who swam through the folds of possibility, not believed to be the distant Far Realm. The birth of the aboleth was a mere accident, caused by her blood spilling upon the still-hot material plane, and from this one aboleth spawned many. For Azter, the first aboleth was a symbol of ancient perfection, a creature immortal and ageless which would remember everything from the creation of the material to the end of time. That aboleth reproduce, can perish, and thus lose strands of memories and tracts of history to the fell blades of uppity adventurers or natural disasters was a tragedy. They try to regain their unified memories through the act of feasting, where memories of other races flash through their ancient brains during their meals, but it is not enough. The ultimate form of the aboleth race is to be unified, a single godly being, and therefore Azter decided to make this so. His ambition spread beyond simply remembering all the aboleth race had to offer, and spread out to absorbing all the experience and all the memories in the world.
Yad-Soth allowed him to do that. Through mystic arts honed over the thousands of years, he found a way to revive Yad-Soth and bind his mind to the Elder Evil's body, becoming its will. Yad-Soth, whose power was domination over time and space, who would allow him to reach through the fabric of the universe and devour everything from the first creature to souls and memories yet unborn, from countless timelines and countless worlds. He used the last 500 years of his still normal existance to create the perfect scenerio, to sacrifice the world's population in great number and use the resulting psychic screams to attract the attention of the Blood Queen Piscaethces to the material plane. There, getting her attention but for a moment, he would harvest her life-giving blood and use it to revive the long-dead Yad-Soth. Heroes were set out to stop him...
They were too late.
The world of Haven died, and Yad-Soth was reborn as Azter the Blood Emperor. As he devoured the minds and souls of the world of Haven from early beginning to final moment at the end of time, he looked out into the heavens for other planets and worlds to devour...
Azter desires the memories and experience of all other life forms, believing that doing so would bring him closer to a more true sense of godhood and utter impossible perfection. Whatever other goals he had in life have been absorbed into this one overwhelming feeling. He knows not what will happen when he succeeds in consuming the universe and all of the timeline, but he waits for that day with baited breath.
Azter in the Campaign
Azter has already succeeded in consuming one world, and is likely traveling unto another. While a master of time, Azter is less of a time-traveling creature arriving where he pleases and more a chronological event. When Azter arrives in full, the local time for that world effectively ends, and there will be no more days, no more nights, and no other events until that world is dead. With that said, the heroes often begin to notice Azter's effects long before he ever arrives, as he begins to invade their current timeline, devouring minds bodies and souls. It may be a plot point to discover a way not only to secure the present time, but actually time traveling to the future where Azter appears and attempting to defeat him. If by some impossible means they drive him off from their doomed future fate, they may yet be able to secure a future for their planet where the world does not end in a bloody maelstrom of horror...
Azter may be found in the Far Realm, the Temporeal Plane, or when near the end of time, outer space approaching the planet physically.
Azter takes parts of both Yad-Soth and his original abolethian form, appearing as a truely titanic aboleth made of swirling thickened blood that rotates around at high speed. Within the blood a million souls and faces scream as they are thrashed about. Three eyes glow burning gold, appearing as if stars themselves, and a cloud of dull red mist surrounds his body. He lacks the typical fish tail of the aboleth, instead his tail end trailing on to a point which typically swirls upon solid land like an angry tornado.
The presence of Azter introduces a time paradox, where important events in history are changed to fit the new fate of the world, one which dies at the hands of Azter. The closer the world gets to the End of Time where Azter arrives, the more pronounced its effects are.
Faint: Small time glitches appear, minor causes of deja vu, remembering places you've never been before, and similar vague effects. Spells which handle the flow of time (such as Slot, Haste, and Time Stop) are cast at +2 CL. There is a 5% chance that corpses of recently slain creatures will spontaneously vanish upon death, as if they were never there.
Moderate: As faint, but the chance of a corpse vanishing after death rises to 20%, and they leave stains of blood where they were standing, even if the creature in question had no blood. In addition, the entire campaign setting gains the erratic time trait, speeding up or slowing down where a day may pass in half normal time, or take two days for one day to pass. More obvious glitches appear and deja vu becomes more common.
Strong: As moderate, but the change of a corpse vanishing increases to 50% and players may actually witness tentacles coming out of thin air and spiriting the corpse away instantly with a DC 30 Spot check. Each day a creature has a 50% chance of starting out with the effect of slow or haste upon them, lasting for 24 hours or until dispelled (caster level 20). The erratic time trait of the plane advances so that an hour may pass over one day, or an entire day may take only a single hour. Permenant spells have a 5% each day of winking out of existance as its time ends. Strange time paradoxes appear which baffle the mind and casuality, yet somehow exist anyway.
Overwhelming: As strong, but any creature which dies has its corpse spirited away to where Azter waits. Azter appears within the heavens, and time becomes so that each day which passes may randomly age you or make you youthful by a year, possibly killing you through old age or reducing you to an age so young you haven't been born. Permenant spells now only have a duration of 24 hours, and the CL of time based spells rise by +8. Permenant magical items have a 5% chance of not functioning each day, as their magic winks out of existance (these however may return the next day). Time is completely warped, and as Azter draws near the heavens redshift and the stars begin to go out one by one, as the players witness the heat death of the universe...
Due to Azter's unique time-bending properties it is possible for the range of the malefic property to be messured not simply in distanced, but time. Instead of miles, use months (or years to make it more difficult) to determine when the malefic properties apply. Those with a result of Worldwide (51+ HD) can be felt at any point in history's timeline.
Anathematic Secrecy: Immune to all divine divination spells and effects.
True Death: Dead creatures can never be raised, as Azter plucks the spirit out of time and devours them.