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by Marco Dalmonte English translation by Gary Davies

Menlil (Atzanteotl) - Vengeance, war, protection, deceit
Nin–Hurabi (Nyx) - Fertility, darkness, underground, security
Nin–Agar (Kagyar) - Crafts, metallurgy, weapons
Namtaru (Masauwu) - Messengers, diplomacy, corruption
Naabu (Khoronus) - Knowledge, wisdom, history
Idu (Ixion) - Sun, light, fire, destruction
Erel (Hel) - Beyond, death, cold, reincarnation
1. The Nimmurians are actually humanoid scorpions known as Sohktars, that in 700 BC migrating en mass from the area of the Savage Baronies driven out by the recently arrived Nithians, and arrived in Nimmur, where the enduk (original winged minotaur inhabitants of the region) took them as allies in order to force back the warlike humanoids of the Dark Jungle. The Sohktars at the start were friends of the enduk given that both worshipped Idu, the sun god and supreme creator. With time however a new circle of priests devoted to Menlil, lord of vengeance, of war and intrigue, succeeded to take the power and to convince the majority of the Sohktars to rebel against the enduks, reclaiming Nimmur for themselves. Around about 600 BC the Sohktars ousted the enduk with deceit and forced them to emigrate to the Arm of the Immortals, remained to boss around on their native land. Because of this betrayal, Idu cursed the race of the Sohktars, condemning them to be burnt alive by the rays of the sun. It was Menlil that revealed to them an elaborate method in order to avoid this ominous fate, using body paint in order to protect the skin by now becoming translucent because of the curse and dress in appropriate clothing that limits the exposure to the sun (the Sohktars that adventure on the surface always carry a conical hat and a mask that filters the solar rays, besides the peasant tunics and armour that shield the rest of the skin). For this now in the Sohktars cult Menlil (Atzanteotl) covers the roles of saviour, protector and patron of the Nimmurians, while Idu (Ixion) from ancient protector had become the demon of the sun bringer of death and destruction. Menlil has promised to his followers that one day they will find Gilmun, the sunny land in which they can walk freely without fearing the fiery rays of the sun, but until this moment the Sohktars are forced to fight in order to defend Nimmur from the enduks that seek to reconquer it, and in order to expand their own domains and the cult of Menlil by any means.
2. From the moment of their settling in Nimmur, the Sohktars mostly live underground and shelter in the ancient Nimmurian cities, entertaining relations with the nearby Herathians and with the foreign merchants, but being very attentive that their secret will not be discovered. They have therefore demolished large parts of the ancient inscriptions and enduk representations, replacing them with their own and adopting in total the writing and the Nimmurian language in order to deceive the foreigners. Furthermore, they have taken the enduk pantheon and have transformed it adapting it to suit their own vision of the universe, in which the Immortals are always represented on flying vehicles that speed through the sky. The current creed of the Nimmurian manscorpions thus reflects the dualism of their existence: on one hand the darkness of the underground in which they live is a benefit, on the other hand the surface world and the light to which they yearn represents instead destruction and corruption. The death from the light of the sun represents the closure of a mystic circle starting with the rejection of Idu and the return to him through the purifying flames of the sun. Some extremely powerful manscorpions, once killed by the light of the sun return as undead creatures called Children of Nimmur (Spawn of Nimmur). They enjoy a great respect with the Sohktars, since they think that they have in themselves a power so great and such an iron will to be survivors of the curse of Idu. The Children of Nimmur live in the ziggurats and preside over these holy places as guardians, at the head of a troupe of dead Sohktars animated by the priests as zombies (horrors of the ziggurat).
3. A ziggurat is present in every Nimmurian city, which represents the heart of the settlement and of the religious belief. Actually all the ziggurats are consecrated to Menlil, the most important Immortal among the surface Sohktars, while the other Immortals have a secondary role in the pantheon and as a consequence are represented by few priests, which must anyhow obey the will of the prince of the city and of the local Great Priest of Menlil. The priestly caste is very distinct from those nobles that rule Nimmur (in particular are the different pigments and the decorative motifs of masks and body tattoos, which allows the distinguishing of the two castes), even if in some cases the roles of prince of a city and of great priest can coincide.
4. Nin–Hurabi is one of the Immortals of the Sohktars pantheon, which has taken to heart the manscorpion fate as inhabitants of the depth of the earth and of the shadows. She embodies the idea of security that derives from the darkness and from the underground, and is the symbol of fertility that the Sohktars found only in the darkness, going therefore in countertrend with the rest of the cults associated to her by the inhabitants of the world above. The queen of Apsur (the underground of Nimmur) is the Great Priestess of Nin–Hurabi, and has tried to gain independence from the control of the King of Nimmur. Of consequence, in Apsur are the priests of Nin–Hurabi to have more importance in respect to those of Menlil, unlike the surface communities, and the rivalry between these two Immortals in Apsur was taken advantage of by the queen for her own political aims.
5. Idu is still worshipped as a benevolent Immortal by the enduk and by some manscorpion rebels that have reconquered the city of Um–Shedu in the northeast and now defend it against the Sohktar incursions, planning to use it as a forward base for reconquering all of the territory.
6. Erel (Hel) is the Immortal of the afterworld, a cold place where the spirits attend their reincarnation to the service of Menlil. According to the Sohktars belief, Erel judges the dead and decrees the duration of their wait in the gloom and in the cold of the afterworld based on deeds completed in life and to the devotion to the Nimmurian cause. Erel represents the negation of Gilmun, land of the beneficial sun, and of Apsur, kingdom of the pleasant and fertile shadow of Nin–Hurabi, and is therefore a place of hardship and of incredible agony. For this, even if they don’t enjoy the sympathy of the people, exist various priests of Erel feared and respected by the Sohktars, charged with officiating ceremonies in order to calm the hunger of the Immortal’s spirit and of killing the criminals condemned by the priests of Namtaru or Menlil.
7. Namtaru (Masauwu) is considered the consort of Erel, Immortal of the afterworld. He is the messenger who allows the Immortals to communicate between them (for this he is considered patron of messengers, travellers and diplomacy), as well as the guardian of the gates of the afterworld and keeper of disease. He moreover has the responsibility of selecting those that are destined for death and judgement of Erel.
8. Naabu (Khoronus) is the keeper of knowledge and history according to Nimmurian mythology, the wisest among all the Immortals, to which the others are committed in order to receive advice. For this his priests often carry out the role of councillors with the governors and of keepers of the historic and magic knowledge of the Nimmurian civilisation.