Perilous Gateways

Dark Elf Portals

By Ramon Arjona

Of all the races in Faerûn, none are more treacherous, more evil, or more perverse than the drow. Since the expulsion of Lolth from the pantheon of the surface elves and the exile of her dark elf followers into the lightless subterranean realms of the Underdark, these twisted beings have waged an ongoing struggle with each other and with their former brethren in the Night Above.

Lolth, the Demon Queen of Spiders, believes that this constant internecine war culls the weak from the ranks of her followers and improves the strength of the dark elf race. Her son Vhaeraun, the Masked Lord, quietly opposes his mother's plan because he believes that the drow should strive against the surface dwelling races to reclaim their rightful place as rulers of the realms in the Night Above. Through his clerics, he seeks to establish drow communities on the surface. His sister Eilistraee is completely out of step with the rest of the drow deities since she believes that the drow should forsake evil and live on the surface in peace. Meanwhile, the unpredictable and insane deity Ghaunadaur, who is called That Which Lurks by some, labors toward his own incomprehensible goals, followed by those evil drow clerics who have grown dissatisfied with the rule of Lolth, but who do not share or do not know of the Masked Lord's agenda.

In this ongoing war between the drow deities and the drow themselves, a number of portals have been created to serve the ends of one faction or another. These portals are scattered throughout the Underdark and provide a means for Eilistraee's followers to escape persecution, a means for the Masked Lord's clerics to carry out their secret missions, a way for the clerics of Lolth to journey quickly into the heart of the Demonweb pits, and a means for That Which Lurks to forward his inhuman agenda.


It takes a brave soul to dare the dark elf portals:

Statistics and supplemental information:

About the Author

Ramon Arjona is originally from Hawaii. He now lives in Washington State with his wife and two cats. His work has appeared in the Hawai'i Review, the Absinthe Literary Review, and Strange Horizons. He plans to become an 18th-level software developer so he can get the bonus feats.

Portals of Faerun