Dregoth / Absalom / Mon Adderath

Shower thought. Well, lying on living room floor before bed, but still.

When Dregoth first created the dray, the process was flawed, and the subjects quickly devolved into what would become the 1st generation dray. Dregoth wanted a dray high priest, so he performed the procedure on Absalom, killed him before he devolved, and raised him as a morg.

Now, Mon Adderath never underwent the process because his immortality makes him immune to it.

Now we know Dreogth isn’t an idiot and surely wouldn’t have overlooked something so obvious, but . . .

If we assume that whatever process made MA immortal prevents him from being subjected to transformations/life-shaping (if one goes with the assumption that Dregoth actually knows some life-shaping techniques, and the dray are a result of this), why not try the initial/flawed process on a subject, then make them immortal MA-style, locking them into a non-devolved state?

I know there are obvious answers to that, but I guess what I’m really getting at here is that I’m really curious about the process Dregoth used to make MA immortal.

If you ascribe to the theory that Dregoth created the dragon metamorphosis process, MA’s immortality could just be a side-effect of Dregoth having cast the first stage ritual on MA, making him a non-magic-using photo-dragon (and immortal to boot). Of course then, if it were an option, why wouldn’t Dregoth continue the process to fully dragon-ize his friend.

I always thought that the 1st generation Dray were just prototype Dray that turned out to be unsatisfactory. Not that they were created and then devolved.

It’s a plot point behind Absalom’s creation. The process to create dray was flawed: subjects would come out looking like “perfect” 2G dray, but then devolve and mutate. Dregoth “fixed” this problem by subjecting one of his favored templars to the process and then immediately killing him to prevent him from devolving. And then raised him as a morg to “preserve” his “perfection.”

Later on he perfected the process and then proceeded to forcibly subject his entire population to it, creating the 2G dray as a race.

IIRC Dregoth was already immortal before becoming a Champion (and I believe before developing the Defiler Metamorphosis spell).

Maybe the “grant immortality” spell is a spell that can be used on another subject (and Dregoth used that spell to grant immortality to his friend MA).

The Defiler Metamorphosis spell can “stack” with the immortality spell, but can be used only on the caster, 'cause he requires the absorption of a huge quantity of life energy (through defiling) and the mental power to focus those energy (through psionics). And since MA doesn’t have defiling or a mastery of the Way, he can’t cast the Defiler Metamorphosis spell.

And about the question “why Dregoth didn’t used the first Dray mutation spell on MA, THEN made him immortal”, I think it’s simply 'cause Dregoth didn’t have developed the “Dray mutation” technique yet when he granted immortality to MA.

That was an idea in Rise and Fall of a Dragon King by Lynn Abbey.

And about the question “why Dregoth didn’t used the first Dray mutation spell on MA, THEN made him immortal”, I think it’s simply 'cause Dregoth didn’t have developed the “Dray mutation” technique yet when he granted immortality to MA.

Maybe Dregoth was a novice in granting immortality, and the spell was somehow flawed. Instead of true immortality, MA is merely unable to change, including in age. Perhaps this has far reaching effects on MA - perhaps his personality hasn’t changed since becoming ‘immortal’.

That’s an interesting thought: Rajaat, far more powerful than Dregoth, and with access to the most powerful artifacts of Athas (Pristine Tower + Dark Lens) can grant “true” immortality, while Dregoth can grant only a “flawed one”.

And with the fact that “there’s no “Heaven” in Athas” (both good and bad just go to the Gray), I see why in Athas a lot of people devised methods to achieve “immortality” (life-extending spells, advanced beings, undeath, etc).

Right. I guess that the natural progression of the mortal soul is exactly the same as it is in the rest of the prime material planes - the soul begins in journey to the outer plane most suited for the soul. In the case of Athas this process is averted - the soul begins in journey to the outer planes but gets trapped in the Gray.

I would guess that the Gray is the reason why arcane magic requires life as fuel on Athas. I suppose then that when Dregoth goes to other planes beyond the Gray he isn’t a defiler just a normal user of magic. The magic yields itself immediately.

Nononono, I wasn’t asking why Dregoth didn’t dray-ify MA and THEN give him immortality, I was asking about why Dregoth didn’t dray-ify ABSALOM and then make new-dray Absalom immortal along the same veins as MA, “locking” him into his new state. Instead of doing the same thing via morg-ification.

At a guess I’d say resources. When MA and Dregoth went off on their bromance it was the height of the Green Age and resources were readily available. Need some esoteric components? Go adventuring and get them yourself. Even after Rajaat’s imprisonment Dregoth could have called upon the resources of an entire city-state and its environs to perform epic sorcery.
CbtSS states Absalom was transformed shortly after Dregoth’s resurrection and Giustenal’s destruction. Everything from food to building materials and spellbooks would have been in short supply, especially when you couple that with the fact that at least one of the SKs (Abalach-Re) was looting specific facilities where Dregoth kept a lot of his research and the components for it. It was probably the best solution Dregoth could come up with given what he had available.

Maybe Dregoth have chosen undeath for Absalom, 'cause he wanted his High Priest “in his own image”: both draconic and undead.

In CbtSS there’s this sentence: “To be his priest, Absalom had to become like his god. So Dregoth killed the templar and turned him into an undead creature.”

Maybe Dregoth COULD’ve used the same immortality spell he used on MA even on Absalom, but he wanted an undead High Priest. His death by the SKs and rebirth into undeath imho left Dregoth quite insane, so maybe that’s why he did the whole morg-ification on Absalom.

1 Like

My guess would what Kalindren said, lack of resources. Could also be timing. The ritual to grant immortality make take too long so Absalom would devolve before it was finished.

I would assume that the immortality granted to Mon Adderath was similar to the immortality Rajaat granted to his champions when he made them champions, rather than from dragon metamorphosis.

What Rajaat gave his champions was the first stage metamorphosis. I know that the Templarate at athas dot org take a different position, but “champion” is a job description not a template. Rajaat used his psio-magic in conjunction with the Dark Lens and the Steeple of Crystals to make some of his followers 1st rank dragons, which among other things gave them immortality and a whole suite of abilities. These 1st rank dragons he dubbed his “champions”.

The whole “champion”, “dragon”, and “sorcerer-king” (i.e. being tied with an elemental vortex, thus able to grant divine spells) is confusing sometimes.

For instance we’ve people like Farcluun, who’s a dragon, but is not a champion, neither a sorcerer-king.

From some sources it seems that the Champions became able to grant spells to templars only after Rajaat’s imprisonment, while others says that they already got the ability when Rajaat empowered them as Champions.


Bill Slavicksek introduced the confusion when he wrote the revised box set. According to Slavicksek, the champions (who were not dragons) spontaneously decided to turn Borys into the dragon after defeating Rajaat, despite there being no precedent for it (again according to Slavicksek). Doesn’t make sense? I don’t think so either.

What does make sense it that the champions (who WERE dragons) accelerated Borys’ transformation into a fully grown dragon (probably Borys because he was furthest along the transformation already).

If you believe Slavicksek, Borys subjected himself to an experimental psi-magical spell of uncertain outcome.

Why did Slavicksek do this? Personally I think he just messed up and didn’t do proper research. Lynn Abbey noticed all the canon problems (again, introduced by Slavicksek!) and did her best to reconcile them.