In Hushed Whispers
Lord of Cania
This diabolical, nine-foot-tall fiend has crimson skin and handsome-yet-diabolical features: white eyes with red irises and pupils, long, straight, black hair, broad leathery wings, curling horns, and sharp talons, all of the deepest red, and sooty black scales. He has huge muscles befitting his great strength, yet his speech is as whispering wind. Swathed in a flowing black cape, he is the vision of evil
Mephistopheles, also known as the Lord of No Mercy and the Cold Lord, is the lord of Cania, the eighth of the Nine Hells. He was the main opponent of Baalzebul during the Reckoning of Hell, and still holds a claim to his own layer. He seeks to take Baalzebul’s layer away from him, that he may gain enough power to one day challenge Asmodeus for rulership of all the Nine Hells.
Mephistopheles is something of a walking contradiction. Unstable and thoroughly wicked, he presents multiple faces to those he meets. On the one hand, he can be charming, erudite, and civil. But beneath the veneer of respectability is a vicious temper and unchecked ambition. He is patient and cunning, yet when alone, he flies into a fury, screaming and shrieking, tearing at his skin and destroying everything around him in a thunderous explosion of hellfire and devastating magic. He has one goal, one reason for existence: He covets Asmodeus’s throne. It is, in his mind, his destiny to rule the Nine Hells. So confident is he that he has told this to Asmodeus himself. One would think that such arrogance would be reason enough for the Lord of the Ninth to bring this archdevil to heel, but curiously, Asmodeus hasn’t. It seems he’s content to let Mephistopheles have his delusions. Mephistopheles’ naked ambition and haughtiness does not sit well with his peers. Some are drawn to his power, such as Dispater, but most despise him, seeing him as an unstable and unpredictable element in the Hells’ convoluted politics. Among his enemies, Baalzebul is his greatest. The Lord of Lies has long opposed his every effort. So long as Baalzebul lives, Mephistopheles spends his time hatching plots to eliminate his ancient rival, leaving Asmodeus secure in his position as the Lord of the Nine Hells. Despite his distractions, Mephistopheles still poses a grave threat. He commands legions of ice devils as well as the pit fiends, barbazu, and cornugons that have flocked to his banner. In addition, it falls to him to protect the only gate into Nessus, so he nominally commands the army whose sole duty it is to safeguard Asmodeus’s realm. To make matters worse, he has mastered the essence of Hell, channeling it into a foul destructive energy called hellfire. With such tools at his disposal, it seems Mephistopheles will one day make good on his promise to rule in Asmodeus’s stead. Thankfully, Mephistopheles does not exert the same influence on the Prime Material Plane. Many mortals confuse him and Asmodeus, believing they are one in the same. This frustrates Mephistopheles to no end; above all, he wants to be worshiped as a god. Still, he has a number of small cults that revere him as the god of hellfire. He also attracts disaffected devilworshipers, stealing individuals from other archdevils. His temples are strange places, hidden and out of the way. Decorated with fire pits, they are unbearably hot and the pits are rigged so that they flare up during ceremonies at the most dramatic moments. The cultists meet to perform sacrifices, binding their living victim on a blackened altar and immolating him alive. His screams add the chorus to their silent prayers.