The celestial angels of Eberron live on the plane of Syrania, the Azure Sky. From there, they hunt down evil in its various forms. However, sometimes even the angels themselves can be corrupted. Most angels are corrupted by hubris; because they are celestials fighting for the greater good, they feel they should be worshiped or idolized by the "lesser" races. Others have been tainted by those they fight; corrupted into seeing things in a new light. When an angel is tainted in such a manner, the host of angels either rips their wings from their bodies or binds their wings within magical chains. They then cast them out from Syrania to the Material Plane, usually through an existing manifest zone.
Once cast out, these angels become known as radiant idols. They usually continue down their part of corruption. They tend to identify themselves with some aspect of their new position: one radiant idol may call himself the "god of fire," while another the "god of destruction." Most yearn for the worship of mortals, and will arrange cults to worship them and to do their bidding.
Radiant idols once called Syrania home, though they have been forever banished from their home. Radiant idols live amongst the Material Plane, most frequently in proximity to existing manifest zones between Syrania and Eberron. For instance, the city of Sharn, which sits on one such manifest zone, is the home of about half-a-dozen radiant idols, each seeking to carve out their own cult.
Some of the names of the radiant idols that have fallen to Eberron are known, but they are spoken in hushed tones across the continents. Some sages say that even speaking the name of a radiant idol gives that idol power. Instead, sages prefer to refer to radiant idols by their former titles.
- Kotharel, also known as the Harvester and the Lord of Death. Exiled to Eberron in 710 YK, Kotharel began a large cult of murderers. Kotharel was brought low by knights of Dol Arrah and is currently imprisoned in the island prison of Dreadhold.
- Sythrael, a radiant idol who unknowingly interfered with the plans of the Lords of Dust. Sythrael was transformed into a statue trapped within Sharn, where his followers seek to undo the rakshasa magic and free their master.
- Vorlintar, also known as the Voice of the Innocent and the Keeper of Hopes, Fifth among the Fallen of Syrania. Vorlintar carved out a cult in the Fallen district of Sharn, until his defeat at the hands of the Son of Khyber and the Thorn of Breland.
- Zotharr, also known as the Idol of Death, still resides in Sharn. He is worshipped by Kielsten Marquan, who has turned his inn in the Lower Central ward of Sharn into a temple to the fallen idol.
Radiant idols still resemble the angels they once were: handsome humanoids with flawless features. Their only difference are on their wings. Those who have had their wings ripped off show noticeable stubs and scars where their angelic wings once sprouted from their shoulders; those who have had their wings bound display numerous chains tied to weights of many shapes and sizes, each with an angelic rune inscribed on them.
Radiant idols maintain most of the same abilities they had as angels. They have a wide array of spell-like abilities, have the ability to regenerate their wounds, and are immortal. All radiant idols are immune to acid, cold, and petrification, and all angels are highly resistant to electricity and fire. Radiant idols have darkvision, low-light vision, and the ability to speak any language. Like angels, radiant idols are surrounded by an aura; however, this aura has been corrupted, and it now inspires fear and awe in mortals around them.
Radiant idols will work specific magics upon those that worship them. They can perform a ritual of initiation, which they call the Blood Oath. This ties the worshiper to the radiant idol through magical and mental means. The ritual itself lasts for 2 hours, and afterwards, the radiant idol and its subject are mentally bonded. This allows the radiant idol to mentally communicate, locale, scry upon, torture, or even kill the worshiper. These abilities know no distance limit. Those successfully subjected to the ritual are enthralled by the idol, following their every word. There is no limit to the amount of people that a radiant idol can subject to the Blood Oath.
As part of their banishment from Syrania, radiant idols are also subjected to a curse when their wings are removed. Radiant idols cannot fly by any means, including magical ones. Any spells that grant flight to other creatures automatically fail when cast upon a radiant idol, and any magical effects that cause flight will fail within 30 feet of the radiant idol.
- ↑ 1.0 1.1 1.2 1.3 1.4 1.5 Sharn: City of Towers. Keith Baker & James Wyatt (2004). Wizards of the Coast. ISBN 0-7869-3434-4.
- ↑ 2.0 2.1 2.2 2.3 Son of Khyber. Keith Baker (November 2009). Wizards of the Coast. ISBN 0-7869-5234-2.
- ↑ Unknown (June 2006). Dragon #344: Web Supplement (PDF). Paizo Publishing. Retrieved on 2020-05-24.
- ↑ "Fallen Angel" (December 2004) by Keith Baker. Dungeon Magazine issue 117.