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Devil Astaroth (Arch-Devil of Irony)

Devil Astaroth
Devil Astaroth

Astaroth (also Ashtaroth, Astarot, and Asteroth) is a Prince of Hell.

He is referred to in The Lesser Key of Solomon as a very powerful deity. Astaroth’s main assistants are four demons called Aamon, Pruslas, Barbatos and Rashaverak. In art, in the Dictionnaire Infernal, Astaroth is depicted as a nude man with dragon-like wings, hands and feet, a second pair of feathered wings after the main, wearing a crown, holding a serpent in one hand, and riding a wolf or dog. According to Sebastien Michaelis he is a demon of the First Hierarchy, who seduces by means of laziness, vanity, and rationalist philosophies to see the world and his adversary is St. Bartholomew, who can protect against him for he has resisted Astaroth’s  temptations. To others, Astaroth teaches mathematical sciences and handicrafts, can make men invisible and lead them to hidden treasures, and answers every question formulated to him. He was also said to give to mortal beings the power over serpents.

Astaroth is the prince of accusers and inquisitors.

The Gates of Hell (Dice Freaks)

Grimoire of Cosmic Entities Volume One By Eli Atkinson, William Church and Serge W. Desir, Jr.

Original Concept by Serge W. Desir, Jr.

Full netbook can be found on the following website

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Astaroth, Arch-Devil of Irony
The Tenth Lord of the Nine
Cleric 10/Invisible Blade 5/Swashbuckler 20
Large outsider (Abomination, Evil, Extraplanar, Lawful)
Divine Rank5
SymbolA gold, broken fertility symbol (often a bull’s horn) superimposed on a black inverted triangle
PortfolioBetrayal, Cruelty, Corruption, Power
Cleric AlignmentsLE, NE, LN
DomainsCharm, Evil, Law, Trickery
Favored Weapon“Sharp Wits” (Dagger)
Hit Dice62d8 + 5d6 + 20d10 + 870 (1596 hp)
Initiative+16 (+12 Dexterity, +4 Improved Initiative)
Speed120 ft., Fly 240 ft. perfect
Armor Class86 (+15 deflection, +12 Dexterity, +5 divine, +34 natural, +6 profane, -1 size, +5 unfettered defense), touch 52, flat-footed 69
Base Attack/Grapple+70/+88
AttackSharp Wits +90 melee (1d6+20 +2d6 (lawful) +3d6 and 1 negative level (unholy)/18-20/+6d6 and 2 negative levels (unholy)); or Sharp Wits +90 ranged (30 feet) (1d6+20 +2d6 (lawful) +3d6 and 1 negative level (unholy)/18-20/+6d6 and 2 negative levels (unholy))
Full AttackSharp Wits +90/+85/+80/+75 melee (1d6+20 +2d6 (lawful) +3d6 and 1 negative level (unholy)/18-20/+6d6 and 2 negative levels (unholy)); or Sharp Wits +90/+85/+80/+75 ranged (30 feet) (1d6+20 +2d6 (lawful) +3d6 and 1 negative level (unholy)/18-20/+6d6 and 2 negative levels (unholy))
Space/Reach10 ft./10 ft.
Special AttacksDiabolical aura, domain powers, the Presence of Hell, salient divine abilities, spell-like abilities, spells.
Special QualitiesAbomination traits, arch-devil qualities, Blindsight 500 ft., damage reduction 30/epic, good and silver, Diabolical Prowess, divine aura (50 ft., DC 30), godly realm, divine immunities, greater teleport at will, immunity to acid, cold, fire and poison, nondetection, plane shift at will, regeneration 20, remote communication, resistance to electricity 25, see in darkness, speak and read all languages and speak directly to all beings within 5 miles, Spell Resistance 73, telepathy 1,000 ft.
SavesFort +60, Ref +62, Will +62
AbilitiesStrength 29, Dexterity 35, Constitution 30, Intelligence 38, Wisdom 35, Charisma 41
SkillsBalance +51, Bluff +104, Climb +40, Concentration +85, Decipher Script +35, Diplomacy +122, Disguise +87, Escape Artist +92, Forgery +35, Gather Information +48, Hide +78, Intimidate +87, Jump +88, Knowledge (arcane) +89, Knowledge (history) +79, Knowledge (local) +34, Knowledge (nature) +20, Knowledge (nobility and royalty) +40, Knowledge (the planes) +89, Knowledge (religion) +94, Listen +74, Move Silently +75, Perform (oratory) +36, Search +67, Sense Motive +92, Sleight of Hand +43, Spellcraft +87, Spot +74, Survival +67 (+75 on other planes, +73 following tracks), Tumble +91, Rope Use+8 (+20 with bindings)
FeatsAlertness, Cleave, Charlatan, Combat Expertise, Corrupt Spell-like Ability B , Dark Speech B , Dodge, Far shot, Improved Critical, Improved Disarm, Improved Initiative, Improved Rapid Shot, Many Shot, Mobility, Persuasive, Point Blank Shot, Power Attack, Precise Shot, Quicken Spell-Like Ability (fireball), Ranged Disarm, Rapid Shot, Spring Attack, Weapon Finesse, Weapon Focus (Dagger)
Epic FeatsBlinding Speed x2, Epic Evil Brand B , Epic Weapon Focus (Dagger), Multispell-like Ability, Overwhelming Critical, Spellcasting Harrier, Uncanny Accuracy
Divine Abilities
Divine  Blast (18/day, 20d12 damage), Divine glibness (62 nd level caster, 15 creatures, DC 60), Divine Shield (50 hp, 13/day), Golden Rule*, Hoarding of Hell*, Infernal Glamer*. *Unique Salient Divine Abilities; see below for details.
EnvironmentAny land and underground
OrganizationSolitary (Unique) or with Rathguul
Challenge Rating61
TreasureQuadruple standard plus Sharp Wits
AlignmentLawful Evil
800px Astaroth.svg
Astaroth’s seal (according to The Lesser Key of Solomon)

The sphere of Earth lie realms largely forgotten by the bulk of the Cosmos. Indeed, many gods ignore our planet, oblivious to the fact that a greater number of its powerful arcanists, warriors, and divine worshipers are making tremendous headway into the Realities Beyond. An increasing number of gods forgotten in their own pantheons have flocked here but these beings are relative latecomers when compared to the likes of cosmic entities. For millennia before the appearance of the first gods, powerful cosmic beings ruled these forgotten realms, warring against each other and eventually bringing lowly humanoids into the world. But, even as these cosmic beings did battle, the Powers of Hell realized that these forgotten realms – filled with magic and wonder – would one day have a profound influence on all Creation. Chief among these powers was the very first Lord of the First, the obscenely powerful Astaroth.

Many assume that Tiamat was the first Lord of Avernus, having been placed into the position by Lucifer after repeated angelic and demonic incursions into the layer. However, before Tiamat, Astaroth ruled although only a sparse few recall such a time. In the Days of Antiquity, after Lucifer the Satan smashed the contesting malefircareim that organized across Hell, he established the Lords of the Nine, placing the eight greatest malefircareim as regents of the Nine Perditions. The cleverest and one of the most powerful was Astaroth who was placed over Avernus.

Those who know where to look have found at least three different legends associated with Astaroth’s exile from Hell. The following is given the most credence. According to this legend, Astaroth, as the arch-fiend closest to the rest of the Cosmo due to his lofty perch in Hell, was far more interested in observing the miserable lives and toils of the gods and their mortal creations than he was in ruling Avernus. He knew that it would be among those gods and mortals that the future of the Cosmos would be determined. One world in particular, Earth, with its waning cosmic beings, fledgling gods and mortals, and wellspring of magic, caught his eyes. However, Astaroth knew that Lucifer placed him in Avernus for the explicit reason to guard against invasion from beyond and that this duty would occupy the bulk of his time. So, Astaroth developed a plan: he would seek and intentionally fail to overthrow Lucifer. Hedging his bets, Astaroth believed that if he played his role of traitor and coward well enough that Lucifer, rather than destroy him, would exile him from Hell.

Thus it came to pass that even as the Voyeur angels arrived in Hell, Astaroth sought out allies and found two: the relatively innocuous Asmodeus and the conniving Beherit. The three forged a plan to cast down The Overlord and, in doing so, forged a strong bond among each other – for devils. The Wars of Light and Greed erupted and Astaroth quietly took a back seat to Asmodeus,  fully expecting the weaker devil to fail and for his plan to succeed. But, alas, Asmodeus far exceeded Astaroth’s expectations as he had forged his own alliances among the Dukes of Hell and notable Lords. At the end of the conflict, it was Lucifer who was banished and Asmodeus who descended to the Serpent’s Throne. In a startling move, Asmodeus ‘rewarded’ all those who assisted him, effectively betraying each of them by giving them precisely what they wanted (which resulted in the destruction of Beherit). To Astaroth, Asmodeus granted permanent exile from Hell to Earth wherein he would serve as a diplomat for Hell. As a seal on his exile, Asmodeus changed his name to Gargauth and wiped the name Astaroth from all mention in Hell. However, since he was officially a traitor, Asmodeus decreed that Gargauth existence was forfeit if he ever returned to Hell. So well carried out was this plan that, aside from the Lords of the Nine, Tiamat, and a few arch-devils of Hellspawn background, none remember that there was ever an Astaroth ruling in Hell.

Astaroth embraced his new name and role, arriving into Earth with glee. For, what no one knew was that both Asmodeus and ‘Gargauth’ had concocted a plan. By declaring him an exile from Hell, the entire Cosmos believes that Gargauth is out of Hell’s favor and therefore not part of the Hierarchy. This is further compounded by the death-threat placed on Gargauth’s head should he return to Hell. It is for these reasons that the over-god, Ao, not only allowed Gargauth to occupy Earth, but eventually granted him divine status within the world. Essentially, Ao does not perceive Gargauth as a threat. However, the truth is that Gargauth is a great threat to Earth. Astaroth is still a strong ally to Asmodeus and has one major responsibility in this little world: to drag it in its entirety into Hell. Should Gargauth grow in enough power and become a greater god, he will then return to Hell. Immediately, the entity known as Gargauth will be destroyed and Astaroth, whose name has been placed within a single tome deep within the Pit of Darkness, will return to life. The resulting backlash of energy will drag millions of souls into Hell, perhaps enough to not only destroy quite a few gods, but to greatly weaken Ao. Astaroth will then return as the sole god of consequence in the realms Creation forgot. What Gargauth does not know is that he is still being duped by The Overlord who expects that the influx of souls and the deaths of a few gods could result in his true form being healed enough to fully emerge from The Pit in his horrific glory.

The veracity of this legend is suspect for a number of reasons. First, according to most histories, the Battles of Light and Greed occurred well after Astaroth was exiled. Second, worshippers of Tiamat hold firm on their position that the Queen of Dragons was the first Lord of the First; supporters of this claim point out that as Tiamat is no longer the ruler of the First Perdition, she has no reason to contest meaningless, little known myths and rumors. Third, it is doubtful that an overpower like Ao would allow an arch-devil into his crystal sphere without first having considered the potential for disaster. Many believe that Ao is more than capable of uncovering any plot concocted by Gargauth and that any intent to drag Earth into Hell would swiftly and immediately be stopped by Ao. Four, Gargauth himself has neither denied nor admitted to this legend. Of course, he has also been silent about all suggestions about his background, so the Arch-Devil of Irony is probably not the best recourse to denounce these legends.

Most of the details and legends surrounding Gargauth (including his appearance) have been told in such ancient tombs as Faith and Pantheons and Powers and Pantheons. However, these texts offer little on Gargauth’s continued relationship with Hell. The Lords of the Nine all despise Gargauth, although Dispater and Mephistopheles cannot help but respect him and have been known to lend him assistance from time-to-time. Gargauth gets along quite well with the Duke of Logic, Caim, and has been known to entertain the likes of Carreau, Melchom, Murmer, and Scax on occasion. Generally speaking, he has little to do with the Fallen and spends a lot of time allowing Beelzebub to think that he is ignorant of the Lord of Flies spies. Gargauth has a fair relationship with Tiamat; indeed, one of her direct offspring, a powerful great blue wyrm named Rathguul, has been an ally to Gargauth for millennia and frequently accompanies him in polymorphed form. However, Gargauth’s greatest ally is Asmodeus. Although Gargauth does not know Asmodeus’ true nature, after eons of contemplation, Gargauth now knows that Asmodeus is far more than he appears and in recent centuries has begun to take his own precautions in case the current Overlord betrays him. Chief among these is Gargauth’s ability to absorb devils. Gargauth believes that if he can absorb enough devils on his own that he will not have to ever return to Hell but can still reap the benefits of being a true god. To date, only Adremalech (whom Gargauth does not know still exists) has learned of this ability and he has long since reported it to Asmodeus.


Devil Astaroth (Arch-Devil of Irony)

Astaroth is a superb combatant, willing and eager to showcase his martial skills when combat erupts. However, he is also vain and unlikely to do battle with lowly mortals, far preferring combat with demigods and powerful monsters.

In combat, Astaroth enters with his Divine Shield and infernal glamer, draining energy levels. He rarely uses his Diabolical Aura, preferring a fair fight that allows his foes to become aggravated and annoyed rather than cowering in fear. He also scorns the use of his spell-like abilities or Divine Blast, much preferring Sharp Wits. Unlike most arch-devils, however, Gargauth is completely unable to call devils, so he is willing to beat a hasty retreat should combat go poorly for him.

Alter Reality: Astaroth exerts a considerable measure of control over reality itself, and his presence can command the very essence of the world around him. This warping of reality manifests in a number of ways.

Gargauth can use limited wish with regard to his portfolio. This ability costs him no XP, and requires a standard action to implement. In effect, Gargauth can duplicate practically any spell effect of up to 6th level, so long as the effect promotes betrayal, cruelty, corruption, or power. When he attempts to Alter Reality in opposition to another deity, he must succeed at an opposed rank check.

As a free action, Gargauth can assume any size from Tiny to Huge. He can also change the size of up to 100 pounds of objects he touches. Gargauth’s Strength, Armor Class, attack bonus, and damage dealt with weapons changes according to the size he assumes. His Strength score can never be reduced to less than 1 through this ability.

Cleric Spells: Gargauth casts spells as a 58th level cleric (59th level for spells  with the Evil or Law descriptors, or spells from the Evil or Law domain list), though he has access to spell slots only as a 10th level cleric. Gargauth can spontaneously cast any spell from the cleric or ranger spell lists, or from the Charm, Evil, Law and Trickery domains .

Spells / day: 6/7+1/7+1/6+1/6+1/4+1. Save DC 31 + spell level.

Divine Immunities: Gargauth is immune to ability damage, ability drain, acid, cold, death effects, disease, disintegration, electricity, energy drain, mind-affecting effects, Paralysis, poison, sleep, stunning, and transmutation. Interestingly, perhaps due to his diabolical heritage, Gargauth is not immune to banishment or imprisonment.

Diabolical Aura (Ex): Gargauth’s Diabolical Aura can be ignored on a successful Will save DC 60.

Domain Abilities: 5/day, Gargauth can increase his Charisma by 4 as a free action. This boost lasts for 1 minute.

Golden Rule (unique salient divine ability): Gargauth always initially appears as a friend and ally, promising riches and power for what originally appears to be at no cost. For many, this is best represented by his Golden Touch. 5/day, Gargauth can transmute any metal save silver into gold. At any one time, the Lord Who Watches can transmute up to 500 pounds of metal into the equivalent of 25,000 gold pieces. Usually, Gargauth allows the gold to be very pure, soft, and crumbly, but he has been known to create unmarked bars or coins for market purposes.

Any that willingly take Gargauth’s gold from him initially find that their luck improves in any venture they undertake for five days. In essence, the client receives a +5 luck bonus on all saves and skill checks. After five days pass, the +5 bonuses end and the client receives -1 cumulative penalty on saves and skills for the next five days. Upon the fifth day, gold – even that given to others – turns to lead. Furthermore, any form of riches, be it gold, jewelry, art, or magic items, the client receives becomes utterly worthless lead or wood once in the client’s possession/ownership (thus, asking someone else to hold onto ones gold or magic sword still renders the item in question worthless).

At this point, the client falls under a terrible curse. In addition to being unable to acquire new resources and (more than likely) pay off debts, he also finds that any ill word he speaks of another comes true within five days. Thus, if a client wishes death on an ally in the heat of anger, that ally will die in some ironic fashion within five days of the utterance. Many clients, upon discovering this curse, use it to eliminate creditors, rivals, and the like. For game purposes, this power works as Bestow Greater Curse or wish, depending on the nature of the ill will and, when applicable, requires a Will saving throw DC 60 to overcome the effects. Once the client uses the power five times, he becomes irrevocably Lawful Evil and a servant of Gargauth, his soul bound to Gargauth upon death; the penalties to skills are removed and the client can begin to acquire material wealth again. The power of Golden Rule remains, although the client may use it only 1/week.

Those who succumb to Golden Rule may escape their terrible fate only if they seek Atonement from a good cleric of at least 41st level. The penitent must then complete a quest to repay those to whom he owes money and those who suffered from his ill-will within five weeks. If the penitent fails in his quest, he dies instantly, his soul the property of Gargauth.

There are increasingly persistent rumors that Gargauth has the ability to transmute almost any inanimate material with but a touch into some other kind of precious item and apply similar curses. To date, these rumors have been unsubstantiated.

Hoarding of Hell (unique salient divine ability): Gargauth still retains some of the power he once had as a Lord of the Nine. Gargauth has the ability to turn any soul he owns into a devil caste of his choosing 5/day (see the Lords of the Nine template for details on this power). Most assume that Gargauth does this in order to create his own army, but the truth is far more deadly for those Gargauth transforms.

Gargauth has the ability to consume and totally destroy any common devil. 5/day, all devils within 50 feet of Gargauth are forced to make a Will save DC 60. A successful save imposes 5 negative energy levels to survivors. However, failure results in the destruction of the devil as Gargauth absorbs its soul.

The Tenth Lord of Nine receives different benefits from absorbing devils based upon type as listed below.

Hoarding of Hell Benefits by Devil
Type of DevilBenefit
Devil LemureHeal one hit point
ImpHeal two hit points and receive a +1 bonus to Gather Information for 24 hours
Devil BeardedHeal two hit points and receive a +2 bonus to Strength for 24 hours
Devil Chain (Kyton)Heal two hit points and receive a +2 bonus to attacks for 48 hours
Devil Hellcat (Bezekira)Heal two hit points and receive a +2 bonus to Hide and Move Silently for 48 hours
Devil ErinyesHeal three hit points and receive a +2 bonus to the DCs for Enchantment spells and spell-like abilities for 72 hours
Devil Bone (Osyluth) Heal three hit points and receive a +2 bonus to Intimidate and Sense Motive for 72 hours
Devil Barbed (Hamatula)Heal three hit points and receive a +2 bonus to Listen and Spot for 72 hours
Devil Gate (Barregon)Heal six hit points and receive a +4 bonus to all spell-like abilities for 144 hours
Devil Horned (Cornugon)Heal six hit points and receive a +4 bonus to all attacks and damage for 144 hours
Devil Ice (Gelugon)Heal six hit points and receive a +4 bonus to armor class, all skills, and class-based abilities for 144 hours.
Devil Pit FiendHeal nine hit points, receive a +6 bonus to all salient divine abilities for 216 hours.
For every 999 pit fiends Gargauth consumes within 1001 days, there is a 1% chance that he will experience a permanent +1 increase in his divine rank.

Note that other devils may also provide benefits; these benefits should be in line with those given above as determined by challenge rating.

Infernal Glamer (unique salient divine ability): Astaroth’s charming personality is not entirely natural. Gargauth is surrounded by a continuous mass charm effect that extends within 50 feet of his person. The effect functions as though cast by a 61st level sorcerer, requires a Will save DC 60 to overcome and, as a salient divine ability, it cannot be dispelled by mortal magic (cosmic and divine beings may dispel it, although  Gargauth can reactive it as a free action during his next turn). Those that save against Gargauth’s Infernal Glamer are immune to it for 24 hours. The mass charm does not function simultaneously with Gargauth’s Diabolical Aura. Gargauth can select who he wishes to be affected by this power.

Gargauth can also use his Infernal Glamer to enhance feelings of joy and pleasure, or impose a terrible spiritual malady. On one hand, Gargauth can grant +5 bonuses to the Constitution, saving throws, and certain skills (Bluff, Diplomacy, Disguise, and Intimidate) for five rounds; in return, the victim suffers -5 penalty to Wisdom and Charisma (there are rumors that Gargauth can make this effect permanent if the beneficiary so desires). Conversely, Gargauth may burn the souls of all living or undead creatures within the radius, imposing 1d4 negative energy levels each round for five rounds. In either case, Gargauth can determine who he wants to effect and unwilling targets within the area of effect receive a Will save DC 60 to overcome the effect.

The Presence of Hell (Su): Gargauth’s Presence of Hell has a 1,350-foot radius, and all effects are as those cast by a 66th level sorcerer.

Regeneration (Ex): Gargauth takes half damage from epic and good weapons. He suffers three times the maximum damage from epic, good-aligned silvered weapons.

Spell-Like Abilities: At will – blasphemy, calm emotions, change self, charm monster, Charm Person, confusion, create undead, deeper darkness, delayed blast fireball, demand, desecrate, detect chaos, detect good, dictum, dispel chaos, Dispel Good, dominate monster, emotion, false vision, flame strike, geas/quest, dispel magic, greater, greater invisibility, Hold Person, insanity, invisibility, Magic Circle Against Chaos, magic circle against good, major image, mirage arcana, mislead, non detection, order’s wrath, persistent image, polymorph self, polymorph any object, protection from chaos, protection from good, raise dead, screen, Shield of law, suggestion, summon monster IX (Lawful Evil only), symbol of pain, time stop, unhallow, unholy aura, unholy blight;

3/day: destruction, fire storm, meteor swarm;

1/day: hellball, wish.

As a demigod, Astaroth has access to the Charm, Evil, Law, and Trickery domains in addition to spells granted by the arch-devil template. All spells are cast as a 66th level sorcerer except Evil and Law spells, which are cast at 67th level (save DC 34 + spell level).

Possessions: Gargauth always carries Sharp Wits, two non-descript platinum throwing Daggers. Both Daggers are +6 axiomatic unholy power returning throwing Daggers.

Astaroth’s Other Divine Powers

As a demigod, Astaroth treats a 1 on an attack roll or saving throw normally and not as an automatic failure. He is immortal.

Senses: Astaroth can see, hear, touch, and smell at a distance of five miles. As a standard action, she can perceive anything within five miles of his servants or ‘worshippers,’ holy sites, objects, or any location where one his titles or name was spoken in the last hour. He can extend his senses to up to two locations at once. He can block the sensing powers of deities or cosmic entities of his rank or lower at up to two remote locations at once for five hours.

Portfolio Sense: Astaroth can sense any act that promotes spiritual corruption in pursuit of power that affects at least a thousand people.

Automatic Actions: Astaroth can use Bluff, Diplomacy, Intimidate, Forgery, or Sense Motive as a free action as long as the DC is 15 or less. He can perform up to two such free actions each round.

Create Magic Items: Astaroth can create any wondrous item with an enchantment effect so long as it does not exceed 4,500 gp.

Summoning Astaroth/Gargauth

Although exiled from Hell, Astaroth can still be summoned in the same fashion as any other arch-devil. The only place it is known that he cannot be summoned into is Hell.

In order to facilitate Gargauth’s summoning, the Arch-Devil of Irony demands the presence of five devils, one of which must be a pit fiend. Thus the devils must be summoned and restrained. If the devils are subject to a planar binding, there is a 50% chance that the bonds that hold them will be released upon Gargauth’s successful summons. A better way to restrain the devils is through Trap the soul. In either case, the restrained devil must be within fifty feet of the summoning circle when the summons is completed. In addition to the five devils, Gargauth requires that he is summoned within a place of nobility that at one time also housed great sorrow. Abandoned castles and keeps are favored locations, although some thoughtful summoners have resorted to using dungeons that once held wrongly accused nobles and royals. Beyond this, Gargauth does not require any special trappings.

When Gargauth is brought into the mortal coil, the summoning chamber shudders and groans. A blast of air issues from the center of the location as the surface of the floor is suddenly transmuted into pure gold. Four columns of golden light erupt around the center of the room as a final shaft of golden light descends from the ceiling to the center. Gargauth will descend to the ground within the shaft of light. As he lands, the Tenth Lord of Nine will immediately turn his attention to the devils. Due to the unique nature of his summons, Gargauth can use Hoarding of Hell on the sacrifices through the wards without breaching them. If the devils are released prior to Gargauth consuming them, the summoners must bind the devils or else summon more devils within the next three rounds; failure to do so cancels the wards and gives Gargauth complete access to the material plane. Once Gargauth consumes the devils, he is prepared to parley.

Gargauth is extremely courteous and patient in his dealings. He never appears to be in a rush and always seems more than happy to offer advice and suggestions to those seeking his aid. Gargauth often asks for clarity in his dealings, giving the impression that he wants to adhere to both the letter and spirit of any agreements; in truth, Gargauth asks clarifying questions hoping to expand his own options once an accord is established. Still, Gargauth does have specific interests in such arrangements and prefers contracts that will lead not only to the corruption of the summoner(s) but to a near-by place of benign or honorable leadership. Gargauth will always ensure that his deals involve the local ruler, church, druidic circle, or some other center of power (however, this is not always obvious to his summoner (s)).

When Gargauth and his summoner(s) reach a satisfactory conclusion, Gargauth will create a physical contract out of a sheet of gold. The summoner(s) must sign this in his own blood, although he has up to one minute to read it in its entirety. As Gargauth does not believe he needs to lie to rip the intent of any arrangement to shreds if he is so inclined, he never hides misleading language on contracts. In truth, Gargauth has no real need for the contract, but feels that having something in writing to show to his client later is always an effective way to reveal how corrupt the client is.

Observant participants (those who succeed in a Spot check DC 60 every minute) will notice that the spectacle of Gargauth’s summons slowly shifts during the duration of his presence. The pillars of light slowly become pillars of darkness while the gold tarnishes and eventually becomes cracked, pitted lead. Gargauth himself will also slowly shift in appearance, becoming more grotesque and monstrous with each passing minute. Once the summoning is complete, the summoning circle is as hideous in appearance as Gargauth himself. The Tenth Lord of Nine will descend into the ground, causing the lead to further crack and squeal in his passing. The pillars of darkness will expand and engulf the entire summoning area in deeper darkness that lasts for five hours. If a summoning sanctuary was not erected for the summons and a mortal enters the darkness, he suffers the full effects of Damning Darkness (all spells are treated as though cast by a 67th level caster).

It is interesting to note that even in Faerûn Astaroth will rarely treat with  mortals that do not take the time to summon him. Only those who seem pure of heart, but have just the right amount of corruption in their hearts, can cause the Arch-Devil of Irony to barter.

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