Patron of the snow elves, Tarsellis Meunniduin is the Seldarine deity of mountains and high-altitude wilderness. Like the Snow Elves themselves, he has isolated himself from the Seldarine due to disputes with his brethren and a general preference for being alone. He now spends most of his time wandering and hunting through the wilderness of Ysgard.
Tarsellis Meunniduin (PDF Version)
(Patron of Snow Elves, Lord of the Mountains, the Snow Father, the Mountain Lord)
Intermediate Power of Ysgard, CN
Portfolio: Mountains, rivers, snow elves, wilderness
Domain Name: Ysgard/the Wild Hunt
Superior: Corellon Larethian
Allies: Aerdrie Faenya, Fenmarel Mestarine, Fharlanghn, Freyr, Freya, Muamman Duathal, Njord, Rellavar Danuvien, Shaundakul, Ulaa, the Seelie Court, the Seldarine, the Vanir
Foes: Auril, Cryonax, Hred, Kostchtchie, Kriesha, Lolth, the Queen of Air and Darkness, Surtr, Thrym, the drow pantheon (except Eilistraee), the goblinoid and orcish pantheons
Symbol: Snowcapped mountain
Wor. Align.: LG, NG, CG, LN, N, CN
The isolated and reclusive Tarsellis Meunniduin (tahr-SELL-is MAY-oon-ih-dwin) is the primary patron of the equally reclusive snow elves. He is revered as the Lord of the Mountains, overseeing and protecting the wilderness found in high, rugged places, as well as the rivers that originate in alpine peaks and glaciers. He does not actively pursue worship beyond the snow elves, whom he sees as his charges and protégés, but he does not discourage other elven peoples from looking to him for guidance.
Tarsellis’s isolation from the rest of the Seldarine was a slow process; he kept himself away from his sibling powers more and more until finally his mountainous realm slipped from within the borders of Arborea and into the wilds of Ysgard. He prefers the wilderness to the company of others, although he doesn’t keep himself fully apart from his fellow powers. Tarsellis enjoys the cold winds of snowy peaks, hunting and wandering through these lands, and admiring their beauty. On occasion he does get lonely and desires the company of others; at these times he can be found hunting with companions or visiting the realms of his siblings or other allies.
Tarsellis is not often mentioned in wider elvish myth, reflecting well his isolation. His mythology is only common among the snow elves, who have a rich tapestry of stories to tell about his adventures and exploits, which typically involve him alone, or involve him and Rellavar Danuvien. The most widespread tale about the Lord of the Mountains concerns his ancient rift with Solonor Thelandira. In these tales he is either the Great Archer’s superior or frequent hunting companion and close friend. In all tales a goddess came between them, but most often in the snow elves’ telling it is Hanali Celanil that both powers were wooing. Lady Goldheart is said to have chosen Solonor over Tarsellis, and the friendship between them has never recovered. The other version of the tale describes the Lord of the Mountains falling in love with a darkly beautiful goddess named Megwandir. However, Solonor distrusted this goddess, and a great quarrel ensued between the pair that has not been resolved to this day. The myths show that Solonor was right when Megwandir is revealed to be Lolth in disguise; this reveal is sometimes connected to the Spider Queen’s attempt to overthrow Corellon by instigating the anti-Seldarine coalition that resulted in her banishment. A rare variation of this tale replaces Megwandir with a goddess who turns out to be the Queen of Air and Darkness instead.
While his relationship towards his sibling powers is somewhat strained, Tarsellis is simply not companionable towards them rather than actively unfriendly, excepting only Solonor. He can still be relied upon for aid in a crisis, and even towards the Great Archer he wishes no ill-will. He is most friendly towards Fenmarel Mestarine, whom he considers a kindred spirit; their relationship is one of mutual respect, and only rarely do they get together. He also maintains a cordial relationship with Aerdrie Faenya, and it is through her that most news is conveyed between the Lord of the Mountains and the wider Seldarine. His relationship towards his once-subordinate Rellavar Danuvien has become strained over the years; the Frost Sprite King’s continued good relationship with the rest of the Seldarine, particularly Solonor, as well as his rising power and popularity, has finally resulted in Rellavar officially renouncing his service to Tarsellis with his move from the Beastlands to Arvandor itself. Finally, the Lord of the Mountains considers Rillifane Rallathil (who some stories portray as once having been Tarsellis’s superior) a rival as they dispute control over alpine forests.
Outside of the Seldarine, the Lord of the Mountains keeps active friendships with just a handful of deities, and alliances with not many more. He is a regular visitor to Alfheim and Vanaheim, which are found near his own realm on Ysgard, and he is close to their residents Freyr, Freya, and the rest of the Vanir. He is cordial towards some powers who dwell within the mountains that his snow elves make their homes upon; in particular, he finds the company of the Oerthan goddess Ulaa and the dwarvish power Muamman Duathal more tolerable than most. It is also said that the traveling powers Fharlanghn and Shaundakul have paid occasional visits to the Lord of the Mountains’ abode.
Tarsellis has a surprisingly narrow set of foes, due largely to his self-isolation. He holds a deep hatred for the drow and their gods, but unlike Solonor, Fenmarel, and Shevarash, he rarely goes out of his way to attack them. His most immediate foes are the giantish powers Thrym and Surtr, both for their proximity to his home and the nearness of their worshipers to his own. Myths hold that he led Rellavar (and sometimes Solonor) against these two giantish gods when the Seldarine waged war against the powers of the Ordning and claimed Arvandor for themselves. The Lord of the Mountains has recently noticed the rising power of Kostchtchie among the frost giants as well, which he considers a worrying sign. Beyond these powers, he makes a point of monitoring the activities of those who seek to harm the natural environment of the mountains or threaten the lives of his followers; he only intercedes if the threat they pose is grave, preferring instead to alert followers of the danger.
While he is reclusive, the Lord of the Mountains is no hermit. He enjoys dispatching his avatars to roam the snowy peaks of many worlds. While there he stalks dangerous monsters that pose a threat to those creatures that live peaceably in the mountains. Tarsellis does not seek out company or companionship, but he is amicable to those he meets who greet him as friend. He is also quick to aid those lost or injured as well, even bringing them to safety if necessary. Finally, he does send avatars to assist snow elven communities when they are threatened, but he favors granting his help subtly.
Tarsellis’s Avatar (Druid 34, Ranger 26, Fighter 16)
Tarsellis is tall, much taller than most elves, and has shoulder length hair of a glittering platinum blonde. His skin is deeply tanned, and silver eyes lookout haughtily from his angular features. He always wears luxuriant furs and armor made from the hide of a great wyrm white dragon, said to have been one of Tiamat’s past mates. He draws his spells from all spheres, but favors the spheres of animal, combat, elemental, and weather.
AC −4; MV 15; HP 211; THAC0 −5; #AT 5/2
Dmg 2d6+15 (giant spear +3, +10 Str, +2 spec bonus in spear)
MR 75%; SZ M (7½ feet tall)
Str 22, Dex 22, Con 23, Int 19, Wis 20, Cha 18
Spells P: 14/14/12/12/9/9/9
Saves PPDM 2; RSW 5; PP 4; BW 4; Sp 6
Special Att/Def: In combat, Tarsellis wields a great wooden spear +3 called Timberpeak. All fleshy creatures (including non-skeletal corporeal undead, but excluding other undead, rocky creatures, elementals, etc.) struck by this spear must make a saving throw versus spell or become rooted in place for 2d8 turns, or until another creature performs a successful Bend Bars/Lift Gates attempt on each foot. He always carries a quiver of reduced javelins that return to full size when he throws them; the quiver always has at least three javelins of lightning, three javelins of piercing, and three javelins +2; other sorts of magical javelins may also be included.
Once per day, the Lord of the Mountains can cast control weather, earthquake, and weather summoning. Three times per day he can cast both needlespears and needlestorm. He can attempt to wrest control of any elementals, paraelementals, and positive quasielementals summoned in his presence, automatically succeeding with earth elementals and ice paraelementals. He automatically passes without trace in snowy or mountainous terrain. Finally, he can summon any woodland creatures he chooses if they can be found within two miles of his location.
Tarsellis cannot be surprised by any creatures while he is in a mountainous or snowy forest or an alpine environment. He can be struck only by weapons of +2 enchantment or better and is immune to damage from all natural phenomena such as avalanches, rockfalls, earthquakes, forest fires, and the like. He is immune to cold and automatically saves against electrical and fire attacks.
The Lord of the Mountains does not manifest his power as often as other members of the Seldarine; when he does, it is often to protect or guide and elf in cold, mountainous wilderness. He will sometimes envelop an elf in a grey-silver radiance that offers complete protection from natural cold, rockfalls, avalanches, and the like. This protection usually appears momentarily before a disaster strikes, or just when an elf is about to give up and succumb to the elements. He also sends manifestations in the form of a ghostly wolf that can lead a follower to safety, food, or a lost and near-death companion. Finally, should his power manifest in the spear wielded by an elf, it will glow with the same grey-silver radiance as above for up to 1 turn, allowing it to strike with a +3 bonus to hit.
The Seldarine call on agathinons, asuras, and ancient treants as their preferred servants, but Tarsellis also calls upon alaghi, arctic foxes, arctic hares, asperii, boars, brown bears, cave bears, deer, eagles, earth elementals, galeb duhr, ice paraelementals, hawks, llamas, mammoths, mastodons, mist wolves, moose, mountain goats, stags, werebears, wolves, and yeti. He displays his favor through the discovery of strikingly beautiful hidden vistas, narrow passes that are easily overlooked, shed antlers that are perfectly formed, and snowflake obsidian. His displeasure is displayed through the discovery of a crevasse or cliff where there seemingly was none before, the sounds of cracking ice and snowpacks where there are none, and the sound of live wood splitting from extreme cold.
Clergy: Clerics, druids, specialty priests, shamans, rangers
Clergy’s Align.: NG, CG, N, CN
Turn Undead: C: Yes, D: No, SP: No, Sha: No, R: No
Cmnd. Undead: C: No, D: No, SP: No, Sha: No, R: No
All clerics (including multiclassed half-elven clerics), druids, specialty priests, and shamans of Tarsellis receive religion (elf) and reading/writing (elvish) as bonus nonweapon proficiencies, while shamans receive only religion (elf).
While Tarsellis is of chief importance to snow elves, he is rarely called upon by other elves. His faith is not considered particularly relevant in the lives of most other elves; only those who live in high mountains or make frequent trips through such terrain call upon him with regularity. The general elven attitude of disdain towards their snow elven kin extends somewhat to the Lord of the Mountains, as their patron, and his faith is seen as somewhat willfully backward, although his protection in mountainous terrain is still considered valuable. Outside of the snow elves, his faith is most often found among sylvan elves and avariel. The priesthood of Tarsellis opposes the more open attitude preached by the Rellavaran clergy and are wary of the rising influence of that faith, but nevertheless, the two groups are firm allies when snow elven lands are threatened.
Temples dedicated to the Lord of the Mountains are found in isolated locations among the snowy peaks and it is said many of these locations show some sort of “thinness” between the Prime Material Plane and the Elemental Planes. Whether they locate their temples here to make use of the easier access to the Inner Planes or because they seek to guard against incursions is unknown, but the most experienced priests at these locations have learned to harness this power to enhance their spells related to the elemental planes, particularly those of Air, Earth, and Ice. In construction, temples often take the form of great wooden lodges capable of housing two dozen or more priests. Snow elven settlements usually contain smaller structures that serve the spiritual needs of the people.
Novices in the service of Tarsellis are called Freshly Formed; full priests of the Lord of the Mountains are called the Weathered. In ascending order of rank, the titles used by the Tarsellian clergy are Foothill, Rise, Escarpment, Spur, Ledge, Crag, Summit, and Peak. High-ranking priests have unique individual titles. Specialty priests of Tarsellis are called peakwardens. Snow elves make up the majority of Tarsellis’s priesthood (85%); the remainder consist of sylvan elves (5%), snow half-elves (4%), alaghi (4%), avariel (1%), and elves and half-elves of other extraction (1%). Drow are never called to Tarsellis’s service. Mountain druids (55%) are the backbone of the priesthood but are most commonly found in remote temples with multiple priests; specialty priests (25%) and clerics (10%) are the majority of the remainder and found mostly in larger settlements, while rangers (6%) tend to rove out in the wilderness alone or in small bands. Shamans (5%) of the Lord of the Mountains are not considered part of the formal clergy, being most often found among alaghi bands and the most remote and isolated nomadic snow elven communities. The priesthood finds itself drawing slightly more males (57%) than females (43%).
Dogma: The high mountains offer safety and seclusion. All that you need can be found there. Seek out places of magical power in the high lands, for outsiders will exploit them if you do not guard against their depredations. Be self-sufficient, and shun contact with outsiders.
Day-to-Day Activities: Most members of Tarsellis’s faith spend their time in remote lodges, studying the natural world around them. Should their lodge be found near a place of planar weakness, they devote a significant amount of time learning to harness the energies found in the region, increasing the potency of the relevant magic types. Those who live among elven communities work to ensure all members know how to utilize the bounties found in the high, snowy mountains, both for the benefit of the community and for self-sufficiency.
Important Ceremonies/Holy Days: The day of first snowfall after summer ends is celebrated as the Snow Father’s Touch. This day is seen as the start of the tests and trials of elven survivability; the clergy of Tarsellis believe that communities without the right balance of self-sufficiency and support networks will fail the test and suffer through the winter months. The event is marked by small feasts with the last of the perishable foods that cannot survive the winter, although the clergy warn that celebrating too much can set the community off on the wrong foot. Few elves outside of snow elves celebrate this ceremony anymore; those who do invariably have contact with snow elves.
Major Centers of Worship: In the northern reaches of the Crystalmist Mountains on Oerth lies a small, narrow glacial valley. This valley is home to a temple-lodge called the Hall of Rock and Ice built near a location with weak connections to both the Elemental Plane of Earth and the Paraelemental Plane of Ice. Due to this location, the priests who reside in this remote temple can summon up a shockingly large number of earth elementals and ice paraelementals to defend the valley from dangers.
Affiliated Orders: The Spears of the Mountain Lord is an order of rangers and fighter/druids that patrol snow elven lands with fanatical devotion to protecting the land. They are adept at setting up traps in the narrow passes and other common routes into the high peaks, and they are quick to hunt down intruders and convince them to leave their lands or eliminate them if they refuse.
Priestly Vestments: Robes of white or grey are worn by the Tarsellian clergy when performing ceremonies. These robes are typically fringed with wolf or bear fur, and a furred cloak is worn over top of the robes. Head coverings are simple hoods or no coverings at all for lower-ranked priests, while higher ranked priests use hoods made from wolf or bear pelts, designed to mimic those animals’ heads. Accents may be added to the robes based on local rankings, but only in shades of dark grey, brown, and dark green. The holy symbol used by the clergy is a carved bone, ivory, or antler amulet showing an image of a snow-capped mountain.
Adventuring Garb: When exploring their alpine environs, members of the priesthood of the Lord of the Mountains favor light, natural armors made of leather or hide. The clergy maintain a secret technique to create strong and beautiful armor from the hide of white dragons, given to and used by powerful members of the priesthood. This armor is never sold but can be granted for service to the church (typically after 30 years of service, minimum), or to allies for their aid. Weaponry favored by the priesthood are spears and javelins, while clerics use staves and slings. Weapons made of bone, stone, and ivory are not uncommon among the clergy.
Specialty Priests (Peakwardens)
Requirements: Strength 12, Wisdom 12
Prime Req.: Strength, Wisdom
Alignment: CG, N, CN
Weapons: Dagger, javelin, knife, spear, and all bludgeoning (wholly Type-B) weapons
Armor: Leather, hide, or dragonscale/hide plus shield
Major Spheres: All, animal, chaos, combat, elemental (earth, water), guardian, healing, protection, travelers, weather
Minor Spheres: Creation, divination, elemental (air, fire), plant
Magical Items: Same as clerics
Req. Profs: Spear, survival (arctic or mountains)
Bonus Profs: Mountaineering
- Peakwardens must be elves, half-elves, or alaghi. While most peakwardens are snow elves, elves and half-elves of every subrace except sea elves and drow are called to be specialty priests of Tarsellis’s clergy.
- Peakwardens are not allowed to multiclass.
- Peakwardens may select nonweapon proficiencies from the warrior group without penalty.
- Peakwardens receive a +1 bonus to hit with spears, whether thrown or held. This is cumulative with other bonuses, such as the snow elven natural ability to gain a +1 to hit with spears.
- Peakwardens suffer one point per die less damage from natural phenomena, whether it is from an earthquake, falling down a cliff, or flames from a forest fire.
- Peakwardens can cast detect snares and pits or pass without trace (as the 1st-level priest spells) once per day.
- At 3rd level, peakwardens can cast aura of comfort or lighten load (as the 2nd-level priest spells) once per day.
- At 5th level, peakwardens can cast hallucinatory forest (as the 4th-level priest spell) or distance distortion (as the 5th-level wizard spell) once per day.
- At 8th level, peakwardens can cast weather stasis (as the 4th-level priest spell) once per day.
- At 12th level, peakwardens can cast find the path (as the 6th-level priest spell) once per day, and in addition can cast stone walk once per month (as the 7th-level priest spell).
Specialty Priests (Mountain Druids)
Requirements: Strength 9, Wisdom 12, Charisma 15
Prime Req.: Wisdom, Charisma
Weapons: Club, dagger, dart, javelin, scimitar, sickle, sling, spear, staff
Armor: Padded, leather, or hide and wooden, bone, shell or other nonmetallic shield
Major Spheres: All, animal, elemental (air, earth), healing, plant, sun, weather
Minor Spheres: Divination, elemental (fire, water)
Magical Items: Same as druid
Req. Profs: Mountaineering
Bonus Profs: Survival (mountain)
Some of Tarsellis’s specialty priests are mountain druids. Their abilities and restrictions, aside from changes noted above and later in this section, are detailed in full in the Player’s Handbook.
- Mountain druids may be elves, half-elves, or alaghi, although most mountain druids are snow elves.
- Snow elven mountain druids are allowed to multiclass as fighter/druids. Half-elven mountain druids are allowed to multiclass as fighter/druids, druid/mages, and fighter/mage/druids, but not as druid/rangers.
- Mountain druids gain a +4 bonus to electrical attacks; unlike other druids they gain no saving throw bonus versus fire.
- Mountain druids gain a +4 bonus to all mountaineering proficiency checks.
- Mountain druids cast all spells from the spheres of Elemental Air, Elemental Earth, and Weather as if they were 3 levels higher. For example, a 5th level mountain druid casts a faerie fire spell as if they were 8th level.
- Mountain druids can sense avalanches, volcanic eruptions, and rockfalls one turn before they happen on a roll of 1 to 5 on a d6. They can also detect deadfall traps and falling blocks on a roll of 1 to 3 on a d6.
- Mountain druids learn the languages of mountain-dwelling creatures (aarakocra, alaghi, amethyst dragon, cloud giant, crystal dragon, dwarvish, ettin, fire giant, fomorian, frost giant, frost sprite, hill giant, goblin, hobgoblin, ogre, orc, mountain giant, red dragon, silver dragon, stone giant, storm giant, white dragon, yeti), gaining an extra proficiency slot for this purpose every three levels (at 3rd, 6th, etc.).
In addition to the spell listed below, priests of the Lord of the Mountains can cast the 7th-level priest spell stone walk, detailed in Faiths and Avatars in the entry for Bane.
Pinecone Burst (Pr 2; Alteration)
Components: V, S, M
Casting Time: 5
Area of Effect: 1 pinecone
Saving Throw: ½
By means of this spell, the caster enchants a pinecone that can then be thrown at a target, causing it to burst with explosive force. The pinecone must be in hand when the spell is cast, and it must have been freshly retrieved within one week, although magic can be used to preserve the pinecone for longer. The pinecone can be hurled in the same round as casting or can be held for up to one round per level of the caster, although the pinecone can’t be put away or handed to another individual to throw. The pinecone can be thrown up to 60 feet with no range penalties; use the grenade-like missile chart to determine where a miss lands. When the pinecone lands, it bursts into bright blue-green flames in a 10-foot radius. All creatures caught within this area suffer 2d4 points of damage, plus 1d4 points of damage per two levels of the caster. A saving throw versus spell reduces damage by half. These magical flames deal twice as much damage to undead and cold-using creatures.
The material components for this spell are the priest’s holy symbol and a pinecone.
Needlespears (Pr 4; Alteration)
Range: 30 yds.
Components: V, S, M
Casting Time: 7
Area of Effect: 1 conifer tree
Saving Throw: Special
With this spell, the casting priest can cause a nearby conifer to launch its needles at a specific target or within a radius about the tree. These needles are as hard and sharp as steel; they count as normal, nonmagical weapons when dealing damage and can be protected against by similar spells, but they are small enough that most armor offers no special protection. If the caster directs the needles at one target, a shower of needles streaks up to 30 feet away from the tree, dealing 1d4+1 points of damage per level of the caster to the creature (to a maximum of 10d4+10), although a saving throw versus spell is allowed for half damage. Any creatures who are in a direct line between the target and the tree may also be struck; a saving throw versus wands is allowed to avoid damage completely. If the save is failed, the interposing creature suffers 2d4 points of damage. If the caster chooses to have the needles launch in a radius about the tree, the needles strike at all creatures within 10 feet of the outer edges of the tree’s branches; those struck suffer 3d4 points of damage, plus 2 points per caster level. A saving throw versus spell is allowed for half damage.
The material components for this spell are the priest’s holy symbol and a dozen fresh pine needles.
Animate Boulder (Pr 5; Enchantment/Charm)
Sphere: Elemental Earth
Range: 5 yds./level
Components: V, S, M
Duration: 1 rd./level
Casting Time: 1 rd.
Area of Effect: 1 boulder
Saving Throw: None
This spell enables the caster to animate a large boulder, up to 8 feet in height. This boulder has the same general characteristics as an 8-HD galeb duhr (Monstrous Manual tome). Intelligent or enchanted boulders cannot be animated with this spell, nor can boulders that have been animated by other creatures. The animated boulder follows simple commands. At the end of the spell’s duration, the boulder returns to its original location.
The material component for this spell is the priest’s holy symbol.