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|N, LE, NE, CE|
|Death, Evil, Magic, Strength, War|
Urgathoa is one of Pathfinder deities.
Description[edit | edit source]
Urgathoa, also known as "The Pallid Princess" and "Lady Despair", is the goddess of physical excess, disease, and the undead. She is mostly worshiped by dark necromancers, the undead, and those wishing to become undead. Sometimes those who live gluttonous lifestyles make supplication to her, as do those suffering from a serious illness. Her faithful believe she was the first creature to defy Pharasma and return, unnaturally, from the Boneyard and break free from the cycle of souls.
Background[edit | edit source]
Urgathoa is an utterly amoral, hedonistic goddess, concerned only with satiating her own desires regardless of the consequences others suffer. Like Desna, she strives for experience and a full appreciation of the world — but her appreciation is utterly selfish. She was once a mortal woman with a tremendous appetite for life, one who rebelled against the notion of being judged by Pharasma and losing the joys of living. Somehow in death she found the strength to tear herself from Pharasma's endless line of souls and return to Golarion, becoming a divine being and the world's first undead creature. Her existence is a corruption of the natural order; some say her first divine footprints upon the soil of the Material Plane birthed plague and infection, and that the first shadows and wraiths were born of her breath.
The goddess's half-rotted form limits the sensations she can experience, so she makes up for this lack with gluttonous depravity — she's tasted the brains of human infants to savor their innocence, torn the heart from the last living member of a race just to feel the sensation of its hot blood on her hands, and inflicted boils and leprosy upon handsome princes just to see the unique patterns they form on royal flesh. To her, the dull existence of a dead soul is pointless and tedious compared to the vibrant intensity of mortal or undead sensation, and creatures should cram as much sensation into existence as possible. Asceticism is repugnant to her, and she particularly loathes those who follow the strict taboos of the Prophecies of Kalistrade.
Urgathoa is usually depicted as a beautiful, raven-haired woman from the waist up — much like her mortal self, though she's as pale as a hungry vampire. Her lower half is rotted and withered, decaying farther down until only blood-covered bones remain at her feet. When she walks, she leaves bloody, skeletal footprints. Although she sometimes manifests nude in the faithful's visions, she usually appears wearing a sheer red or black gown. From neck to toe, the gown is stained with hideous patches of black, brown, and red. On rare occasions, she assumes a monstrous shape similar to those of the hideous undead creatures known as daughters of Urgathoa, with one huge arm covered in fanged mouths and a tail made of multiple fused spinal columns.
Urgathoa's realm in the Great Beyond is a cluster of cities in a wasteland part of Abaddon, filled with undead residents indulging all of their mortal vices in great excess. The daemons of that realm observe Urgathoa and her followers, but leave them alone and untouched — the main threat to her realm is attacks from Pharasma's minions, who intend to repatriate undead souls to the Boneyard and restore them to their proper destination in the afterlife.
Though the Pallid Princess's church is interested primarily in undeath, some cults focus on her gluttonous aspect, indulging in decadent feasts of food, alcohol, and drugs, as well as lavish orgies. Unfortunately, in many cases these "dilettante" cults decline into more depraved practices, eventually embracing necromantic profanities and conversion to ghouls, vampires, and similar creatures.
When Urgathoa is pleased, common food tastes delicious, water turns to fine wine, and meals are never so filling that the diner feels uncomfortable. There are also stories of starving worshipers unexpectedly finding injured or freshly killed meat (in some stories, the meat is humanoid). She rarely uses animals as messengers, but sometimes sends a death's head moth to lead a devout worshiper to a reward, or clouds of biting flies to warn away or punish a mortal. Female clerics who serve her particularly well may be transformed into daughters of Urgathoa. When she's angry, food and water taste like ash and fill the belly with gnawing hunger that cannot be sated, and the target of her ire may be afflicted with rotting or swelling diseases that make it difficult to eat or speak. She has been known to paralyze an offender's legs so the victim must crawl, or reverse the taste of his food so that garbage and sewage are the only things he can bear to swallow. The afflicted can alleviate the condition by making a large sacrifice to Urgathoa, either at a temple or by providing some gluttonous feast, drug experience, or other orgiastic excess in her name. On rare occasions, the only way to alleviate the curse is by willingly engaging in cannibalism, an act that taints the offender's soul and all but guarantees eternal allegiance to the Pallid Princess.
Urgathoa's holy symbol is a death's head moth, often drawn so the skull-markings are exaggerated, or even depicted as a skull with a moth's wings, legs, and head.