’’’Velsharoon’’’ (pronounced ‘’VEL-shah-roon’’ ), the ’’’Archmage of Necromancy’’’, was a vain, selfish, petty, but very canny deity consumed with vengeance, obsessed with experimenting on living and dead beings, and unconcerned with the fates of lesser creatures. In many ways he continued to act like the mortal he originally was, albeit with far greater power at his disposal than before.
Clerics of Velsharoon prayed for their spells at midnight, when the secrets of the night were best unearthed. For a relatively young faith, the clergy of Velsharoon had quickly established a large number of holy days and rituals. The faith had yet to coalesce into a homogeneous creed, however, and widely varying rituals were found not only in different temples but within individual temples as well. Two rituals became fairly widespread. The ‘’Binding of the Crypt’’ and the ‘’Pact of the Everlasting’’ were two rituals performed by powerful clerics, allowing them to return as an undead creature or be raised from the dead automatically if they were slain. Both rituals involved numerous other horrible incantations and the foul sacrifice of numerous good-aligned sentients. Prominent theologians of the faith claimed that these rituals were merely two of seven to be revealed by Velsharoon along a path to achieving immortality.
“Life and death are the twin faces of eternal existence. To surrender to either one is to resign oneself to obscurity. True power lies in the twilight zone between life and death. By seeking to explore and extend the mortal condition and form – even mortal life itself – knowledge of the world and its infinite complexity is extended. Let no one interfere with the pursuit of such research, for the end result will more than justify the necessary sacrifices along the path. Knowledge is power, and knowledge of life and death brings power over all beings, living and unliving.”
Church of Velsharoon
The Church of Velsharoon was a new one, and what hierarchy that existed was found within individual temples. Many clerics of Velsharoon spent their days in necromantic research, seeking to understand and expand the faith’s collective knowledge of life, death, and undeath. Most had created hundreds of undead servitors, some of them unique. When an undead creation had served its purpose, these self-involved researchers often branded the symbol of their deity on its chest and then ordered it to wander randomly across Faerûn. Other clerics of Velsharoon were involved in “support” activities for the faith: grave robbing, embalming, or teaching. A few of the more congenial low-level clerics sometimes cured the minor ills of the populace to bring in funding or worldly supplies for the church, and to more easily gather information about its enemies.
Velsharoon had a renewed alliance with Talos and a flirtatious relationship with Shar (since many of his followers turned to the Shadow Weave. Although he nominally served Azuth (and through him, Mystra) he often ordered his worshipers to kill priests of these gods to flaunt his own power. Velsharoon loathed Cyric, Jergal, and Kelemvor, for all three routinely upset his plans.
As a mortal, Velsharoon was a renegade Red Wizard of Thay whose chief rival was Szass Tam. He discovered a method laid forth by Talos for a mortal to achieve divinity, but quickly realized that the Storm Lord would simply exploit him until he was destroyed. He ascended to godhood in 1368 DR. Velsharoon then shifted his allegiance to Azuth, who, with Mystra’s help, blocked Talos from seeking vengeance.
There are rumors that Velsharoon sought the Crown of Horns.