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The most ancient of myths claim that divs were the aides and architects of numerous magical and forgotten mortal empires in an age of wondrous and mysterious antiquity. During this unfathomably ancient time these masters of creation served as helpful genies, allied to thankful and gracious masters. However, this bond with mortals soon frayed, as generations of the shorter-lived races ebbed and f lowed like ripples in a puddle, forgetting the oaths and respect their forbearers gave divs; some began to abuse and neglect their otherworldly allies, while others merely turned away from genies to rely upon and extol the creations of mortalkind. As the contributions of geniekind were ignored and the deities celebrated the rise of their mortal creations across the worlds, many of the ancient architects rose in rebellion against mortals and the ancient deities who shepherded them. In turning from the paths of inspiration and creation, these genie rebels fell under the sway of a power of destruction known as Ahriman, who granted them not only the vicious might to avenge themselves against mortalkind, but also twisted forms marking them as paragons of depredation, havoc, and ruin. Thus did first divs come into being.
Ever since, divs have arisen from the spirits of the most nefarious and spiteful evil genies. Rather than returning to the Elemental Planes upon their destruction, these foul genies find their way into the claws of Ahriman, a spirit of annihilation who has haunted geniekind since the earliest days of creation. Having forged a realm upon the ruined hinterlands of the foul plane of Abaddon, Ahriman uses the innate corruption of that realm along with his own immortal evil to inspire wickedness in the souls drawn to him, warping such profane spirits into div servitors of a variety of terrible forms. Indifferent to the genie race from which the soul hailed, the Lord of the Divs sees only the evil within and grants it an abhorrent shape particular to the vices that brought the genie to his domain. What emerges from Ahriman's grip is a dreadful new fiend, an enemy of mortalkind and the deities of good, a hateful spirit given a form with which to wreak its revenge. The dark god's touch leaves behind nothing of the individual genie that once was—only hatred, entitlement, and vengeance remain.
Although as varied in form as any of the more pervasive fiendish races, divs often demonstrate the pride, affectations, and tastes of geniekind, drawing them toward desert realms, ancient sites, and opulent displays of power. Yet for all their varied powers, most divs prefer using mortals to foster the dooms they envision, manipulating those they hate to become the masters of their own destruction. Nothing pleases a div as much as seeing a powerful mortal squander everything she's built to end up poor, faithless, and resentful. Divs also treat genies with spite and hatred, eagerly slaying them or working them into their degenerate plans.
As a flaw of their spiritual reshaping, each type of div has a strange weakness that compels it to act in a certain way, such as always attacking the most beautiful opponent, bargaining to learn a secret, or avoiding the color red. Although the wisest know and tell of these weaknesses, every div is aware of its compulsions and avoids being entrapped by them while also plotting ways to exploit opponents who think it vulnerable.
Ahriman appears as a bestial fiend, his hands clawed like those of a tiger and feet taloned like those of a vulture. Oily snakes worm through his scarred black flesh, riddling their host and all near him with deadly venoms. Horns etched with ancient curses crown the tigerlike face of Ahriman, and beyond a great maw filled with soul-rending fangs lies a gate to a realm of darkness rivaled only by oblivion.
An ancient evil, Ahriman sprung from the creation of the first genies. Scholars say when the act of creation that brought genies to life occurred, a shadow of destruction followed. This shadow cast itself across the world, countering light and creation where it fell. Over countless millennia, this spirit of annihilation came to be known as Ahriman.
Ahriman's ultimate goal is oblivion. To aid him in his immortal plots he has spawned innumerable blasphemies over countless ages, but the corrupted genie spirts known as divs are his most numerous slaves. Ahriman and his minions delight in influencing mortals toward destructive decisions and the abandonment of wisdom. As ageless and patient as he is vicious, this force of ancient evil seeks to ease the world toward dissolution one failure at a time.
A conniving demigod, Ahriman accepts the worship of evil mortals despite his and his minions' loathing of such beings. Clerics of Ahriman are either nihilists or deluded cultists who work to corrupt others, sow misfortune, and tear down the works of geniekind. Ahriman grants access to the domains of Darkness, Death, Destruction, and Evil. Ahriman's symbol is a black circle with a thin sliver of light overtaken by darkness, and his favored weapon is the whip.