Return of the Annunaki
Shedskin, Aspect of Nalinivati
CE god of nagas, chaos, evil, and madness
Domains Chaos, Evil, Madness, Scalykind, Serpent (druid domain)
Subdomains Daemon, Demon, Madness, Protean
Mysteries Ancestor, Battle, Dark Tapestry
Favored Weapon nodachi
Sacred Animal snake; Symbol black snake attacking a flower
Centers of Worship Minata, Minkai, Nagajor, Valashmai Jungle, Vudra, Xa Hoi
When Nalinivati ascended to godhood, she shed her mortal inclinations and limitations, and achieved a neutral status and perspective to better suit her position as a deity of the nagas and nagaji people. However, her earlier life was not completely devoid of all connections, shortcomings, and physical constraints, and many of these mortal attachments split away from the goddess when she achieved divinity, forming their own maddened state of her previous worldly life. Nalinivati was not as chaotic and as evil as some of her naga mortal peers, but neither was she free from many of her most carnal appetites and bestial desires – these were the parts of her which were shed like a molted skin upon leaving her mortal state, and so powerful were their insatiable desires that they took on a sentience and divine power all their own.
Many misled, misguided, or truly malign people in the nagaji race, and among nagas and others of southern Tian Xia worship this aspect of Nalinivati, a truly twisted version of the naga goddess’ so-called ‘true’ form. Despite all claims by the priestesses of Nalinivati that Shedskin does not exist, devotees of the demonic spirit being certainly receive power from the dark and bizarre serpent lord: an amorphous, androgynous entity who is said to be both or neither gender, male or female. This strange being is almost certainly completely mad, wracked by the pain of separation with such an alien divinity so unlike itself, and its devotees are mostly those who have been affected or influenced by devotees of Nalinivati, and which most often have had many painful or malevolent experiences while in this position, or those who leave the faith in begrudging animosity. The being’s worship has spread from primarily Nagajor, west to Vudra, east to Xa Hoi and Minata, and as far north as Minkai, with many more cults spread out into the Valashmai expanse of southern Tian Xia.
Devotees of Shedskin do not celebrate any holiday except their own “birthday,” which celebrates the anniversary of their indoctrination or conversion to the faith, and the divine being does not encourage its followers to use or follow holy texts or doctrine. Many of the oldest tales of Shedskin that do not originate from the lore surrounding Nalinivati’s ascension, have nearly all turned out to be steeped in extensive and complicated lies, and the mysteries surrounding the being’s nature seem to be complicated ever more so by the mistruths it purposefully spreads regarding itself. Most informed scholars believe the root of Shedskin’s madness is its inability to come to grips with the reality of itself, which has evolved into the being believing that all of the rest of reality is nothing more than its own lucid dream; however, even this may be a lie the divinity has spread on its own to further convolute the matter of its nature, origin, and intentions. Some believe that the being is no longer anything like a naga, and that it is in fact now some sort of demon lord or psychopathic protean.