Mon Sep 07, 2020 6:43 pm  
Bensozia, Puppetmaster of Hell's Court

This is the next in my series of posts about the consorts of Hell. It took me a little while to figure out the right spin for her, but then it clicked.

It is said that Bensozia speaks not, save by the leave of Asmodeus. That is a lie, started and promulgated throughout the Nine Hells by Bensozia herself. After all, when she speaks, she lets the implication that Asmodeus has approved of her words, cowing those other devils who would not be seen as going against the Lord of Nessus. If the Court of the Overking in Rauxes is a place where lies, innuendo, and gossip are wielded as weapons, it is but the barest reflection of the Court of Nessus, and Bensozia wields those weapons better than anyone else, Asmodeus included.

Upon hearing that Baftis was to be Baazebul's next consort, Bensozia sent her a lovely gown for the wedding ceremony...that was naturally backless to reveal the lighter hue of her back to everyone attending. She took offense at something trivial Aramos said to her, so she manipulated Adramalech and Phongor to come into conflict with him, resulting in Aramos's exile to Avernus. When Asmodeus realized that it was her, he was furious, but he could not undo the exile without losing face.

Bensozia was originally Baazebul's consort, but when Asmodeus met her and saw her in action, he knew he must have her. His first consort, whose name is lost to the ages, was quite powerful (perhaps even a match for any archdevil save her lord), but she combined high ambition and a distinct lack of talent. Seeing Bensozia manipulate the court of Maladomini filled Asmodeus with admiration, and he knew he must have her. One story says that he gave Baazebul rulership of Malbolge in exchange for her hand. Another story, told only in whispers, says that in return for granting Asmodeus' wish, Bensozia promised Baazebul a singular favor, and she repaid him by manipulating Beherit and Batna to their destruction.

Bensozia's plans are subtle and devious. She may even manipulate the PCs to embarrass a rival or put one of the other consorts in their place by foiling their plans, particularly her daughter, Glasya. It is a mother's prerogative to correct her daughter, after all.