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Forgotten Realms: Zaknafein


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Initial post: Dec 17, 2012 3:21:54 PM PST
As someone who takes interest in the afterlife in fantasy novels, and is a big Forgotten Realms fan, the afterlife in Faerun is intriguing. The gods are one of my favorite aspects of the Realms (people disagree with me though, I'm sure), and because I get attached to characters, it is naturally hard when they die. So, if they have a good afterlife to go to, it eases the pain a bit.

I know about souls going to the Fugue Plane and waiting for the gods to take them (though with some races, such as the elves, it seems as though they directly to Arvandor, unless they worship a non-Seldarine deity). A lot of Faerunians pay homage to more than one deity, based on their circumstances (Sune for love, Tymora for luck, etc). Even if a mortal does not worship a particular deity, when he/she dies, he/she will be picked up by the deity that best fits that mortal's ethics and morals, even if they weren't aware of it in life.

I have posted my thoughts on two other sites so far, and they concern the fate of Zaknafein, who has not been mentioned in the novels for a long time (Drizzt used to think about him a lot. And with the way things are in the current Neverwinter novels, I think a visit from his father would be beneficial, and to know where the spirit of Zak is). Some think Zak should have ended up on the Wall of the Faithless and the False, but I disagree. Drow society is such where you get Lolth's teachings shoved down your throat, and are led to believe that she is the only true deity. This does not leave much room for a drow to choose, and I don't think those who defied her would end up on the Wall, because they had little to no knowledge of the doctrines of the other gods. Or, if they did, they'd have to be -very- secretive about their worship. Perhaps, this was the case with Zak, and he just didn't share it with Drizzt because he didn't want to risk it. When he was about to be sacrificed, he did whisper a prayer, and it wasn't to Lolth. I think Zak knew he wouldn't end up in the Abyss. If he couldn't beat the matrons in life, he could in death. Yes, he was turned into a zombie, but even then, he defied the matrons.

In Passage to Dawn, Za's spirit came to Drizzt and told him he was in a good place and content, and that he was proud of him. And in the Silent Blade, Drizzt sensed that Zak was watching over him from a goodly plane, watching and smiling. Zak, while far from perfect, and some would even say a coward, sacrificed a lot for his son, and wanted Drizzt to be what he couldn't. Zak deserved to have a good afterlife.

What I would like to know is where this good place is. Which benevolent deity picked him up? Mielikki perhaps? Corellon? Some, including myself, have wondered if Zak is in fact in that pocket dimension where the Companions of the Hall are. It's possible, though it has yet to be mentioned. In the scene where Zak's spirit comes to Drizzt, he promises they will meet again. This was a long time ago, and perhaps Salvatore has forgotten this passage, and other passages suggesting Zak is in a good place. He's written much since then, but I hope he remembers, and that we do indeed find out this "good place", Zak's soul is in. Salvatore has mentioned in the past that he might do a backstory about Zaknafein, but while others might not care, I personally would like to know where his spirit is before I read a backstory. It's just a small thing in the larger story, but it matters to me. I like to know the fate of souls, and I am indeed glad that Zak's soul is in a good place, I'd just like to know what place that is.

Who's with me?

In reply to an earlier post on Dec 17, 2012 7:33:15 PM PST
R. Wilde says:
I think a possible candidate would be Eilistraee, patron deity of swordwork and good-aligned drow (among other things).

In reply to an earlier post on Dec 18, 2012 11:11:12 AM PST
Eilistraee has crossed my mind as a possibilty, and even though she is dead now, her realm was spared, thanks to Corellon.

In reply to an earlier post on Dec 19, 2012 6:58:37 AM PST
Omg, this makes me want to read the Dark Elf novels again.
Sorry I have no real input to answer your questions though. Since Bob Salvatore spent so much time on writing for Kingdoms of Amalur, what I consider to be one of the finest videogame RPGs ever made, I wonder how far into his books he gotten again yet.
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Discussion in:  Fantasy forum
Participants:  3
Total posts:  4
Initial post:  Dec 17, 2012
Latest post:  Dec 19, 2012

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