Elder Elemental Eye
Portfolio: Elemental Evil
Symbol: A black metal equilateral triangle, point down, with an inverted Y within it, a golden flaming eye
Alignment: Neutral Evil
Core Worshippers: Humans
Domains: Air, Chaos, Earth, Evil, Fire, Madness* (CD), Water.
Favored Weapon(s): Dagger
Special Notes: Clerics of the Elder Elemental Eye must choose one of the four elemental domains (air, earth, fire, water) as one of their domains and may not choose more than one of them.
Description: The Elder Elemental Eye is actually an aspect of dread Tharizdun, the Dark God, created originally to mask the cult from the eyes of the world and draw potential worshipers interested in dark power but afraid of the reputation of the Tharizdun. It was created to mask the cult from the forces of good and to draw in new worshipers who might be afraid to serve Tharizdun directly. Clerics of the Elder Elemental Eye typically wear ochre-colored robes and carry or wear a symbol, a black triangle with an inverted Y-shape inscribed within it). Occasionally, their robes or the symbol are altered so that they reflect what element (fire, air, earth or water) they revere over the others, if any.
The symbol of the Elder Elemental Eye is a downward-pointing black triangle with an inverted yellow Y within it so that the tips of the figure meet the middle of each side of the triangle.
Clerics of the Elder Elemental Eye are his clerics, although sometimes they do not realize it. For example, drow clerics introduced to the religion of Elemental Evil did not know that they truly served Tharizdun. Even the clerics of the original Temple of Elemental Evil did not refer to the Elder Elemental Eye. They believed that they revered only the evil aspect of the elements themselves (or the demon Zuggtmoy).
Clerics of the Elder Elemental Eye often choose one element to revere. Separating into four factions results in much competition among the cult’s ranks. Yet they see this rivalry—which sometimes results in open conflict—as good, since it promotes strength.
So, despite the fact that many of the worshipers of the Elder Elemental Eye do not know it, and despite the fact that the two deities have different granted domains, Tharizdun and the Elder Elemental Eye are the same deity.
The cult also also uses the much more overt symbol of a golden flaming eye. For years, people have wrongly assumed that this was the symbol of Zuggtmoy, but with good reason. While Tharizdun was imprisoned far away, he used powerful demon lords such as Zuggtmoy, Lolth, and Demogorgon as conduits to transfer power to his clerics. In some instances, the demon did not even know what was happening, while in others it believed itself to be the object of reverence by the worshiper in question. In days past, when Lareth the Beautiful commanded the moathouse (the outpost for the Temple of Elemental Evil), both Zuggtmoy and Lolth believed him to be their priest—when really he served none other than the Elder Elemental Eye (and Tharizdun).
For all Lolth’s influence over drow society, and the infiltration of her priesthood into all aspects of life, other religious cults do spring up among the drow from time to time. Most such sects are discovered and crushed in short order, but a few are secretive and widespread enough that, by the time the Church of Lolth becomes aware of them, they are not easily destroyed.
The greatest of these organizations, at least until recently, was the cult of the Elder Elemental Eye. The Eye is a chaotic, destructive adherent of entropy and the most primal aspects of the four elements. It never communes directly with its clerics, but instead seems to speak through the great elemental princes: Imix of Fire, Ogrémoch of Earth, Olhydra of Water, and Yan-CBin of Air. Drow followers of the Elemental Eye seek one day to supplant Lolth’s priesthood as the primary religious force in society. These cultists are among the race’s greatest schemers, for secrecy is not only vital to their success, but their very survival.
For a time, their greatest bastion was the infamous Temple of Elemental Evil, and its recent destruction at the hands of adventurers has reduced the cult to its weakest state yet. It survives in the darkest reaches of drow society, however, and slowly works at rebuilding itself. A drow discovered to be a member of the cult can expect immediate torture and execution, unless she has something of substantial worth to offer in exchange for silence.
Some of the few sages that are intimately familiar with the Cult of the Elder Elemental Eye suggest that the Eye itself might be an aspect of the mad deity known to the surface-dwelling races as Tharizdun.