The rarest object we stumbled on in our journey was nothing more than an old parchment with pictorial artwork upon it. Inscribed on the parchment was a depiction of each of the gods, interacting with the mortals of the world in the beginning. Old elven text wove its way around the edge of the parchment; a song about the creation of the gods then. Several new names cropped up in the text, and it would prove to be the fuel that we needed to continue our questing for knowledge about the lost ones.
On the scroll was a figure who stood at the rear of the gathered gods. A stream of people curled around the gathering on the right side of the page, venturing up to a set of steel gates. The tall god ushered them with his hand to move through the gate, which connected to a single bright star by way of white light. Near the image were these words:
- Oh King of the Lost,
- Lead us beyond,
- To the last gate.
- We have died,
- Afterlife awaits,
- Our resting place.
- Lord of the Forgotten,
- Remember us,
- Send us home.
Surdem is the last of the gods, standing at the gateway to the afterlife. He ushers the souls of the fallen onto the path that will take them back to the high God where they will remain ever after. He is not a god of combat, but is instead a lord of careful selection. For those who end their way at the gates of the afterlife, Surdem holds the power to keep them from passing on. He selects those who still have purpose in life, and allows some to stay in the spirit realm until they realize that they have done everything they could do.
Surdem is the god responsible to resurrection too. Without him holding souls at the gate, they would pass into the beyond and be unable to return. Unfortunately for some, because there is a chance to stay after death, they never depart the place of their death. These spirits often transform into ghosts terrorizing the living. It was from this natural occurrence that inspired Brashq to create undeath.
The followers of Surdem are few, for like the forgotten spirits trapped between worlds, so too was the Forgotten King; hence where the name originates. Small cults still follow the lost god thanks to aged texts still in the hands of the elves, but little evidence of his presence remains. Priests and Clerics that still dedicate themselves to Surdem make it their goal to gather the spirits of the lost in order to try and build up the god’s power as well as their own. Many of their undertakings are misguided though, for the spirits of the dead have long stopped heeding the call of the Forgotten King. They now answer to the son, Brashq, and are more than willing to extinguish life.
Still, some of the groups seek out spirits to help them understand that they are able to pass on. These groups are few and far between.
Surdem appears to mortals simply as a shadow of his former self. The once proud king of the dead now stands with a bit of stoop in his normally straight and tall stature. His hair is kept short and black, marked with gray and thinning at the edges. His race is always the same as the being to whom he appeared. Gray eyes take in everything, piercing to the soul and revealing all secrets. Those who stand in his presence are naked to his gaze, but he does not reserve judgment. Those he reserves for the high God. If a being still has a purpose, Surdem will only tell them with his alto voice that they cannot yet leave.
Surdem does not hold any burial rites, for his domain is beyond the realm of the living.
Surdem is the son of Estridae and Sploron. He was granted power over the dead. Where his mother shepards a soul beyond, he sees that the Gates are open to them. In a union with the goddess Zamikeye he had two sons, Brashq and Sendall. He is largely responsible for raising the brothers after his calculated pressuring caused Zamikeye to exile herself.