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In the shadowy streets of ancient Stygia, where the worship of the Set holds sway over one and all, the serpent is the living image of the true god. Because of this, serpents are held in high regard in Stygian culture.
It is forbidden to harm a snake for any reason, and in the cities of Keshatta and Khemi the faithful live in the constant presence of all manner of serpents. Cobras slither unchallenged through the corridors of the temples and vipers sun themselves upon the street corner or in the market square without fear of harm. If a man is bitten by a serpent it is the will of Set, and there is nothing for him to do but seek solace in the temple and let the venom run its course.
Of all Set’s children it is the giant python that is revered the most. These deadly constrictors are housed in temples all across Stygia, where they are treated as sacred treasures by the zealous priests. When these giant reptiles grow hungry they are free to leave the temple and hunt the city streets for their prey. When a Stygian crosses paths with one of the sacred pythons he must prostrate himself on the ground before the hungry snake and await Set’s judgment. It is considered a great honor to be chosen as a sacrifice to the Great Serpent, and every day men and women willingly submit themselves to the coils of these dreadful beasts. Once they have fed, the sacred pythons return to their subterranean lairs beneath the city temples to slowly digest their meals.
The pythons of Stygia continue to grow each year they are alive. Sailors who ply the sacred river Styx claim to have seen specimens as large as thirty feet in length. It is rumored that within the confines of Set’s temples there are pythons that are hundreds of years old, grown so large that they may feed upon a grown man as easily as a lesser snake eats a common mouse.