The Shen god of the underworld


Alternate Names Emma, Enma, Yan Wang, Yen Lo, Yomra
Pantheon The Shen
Powers Manipulation Perception Darkness Death Justice
Abilities Empathy, Integrity, Investigation, Occult, Politics, Presence


The terrible king of the underworld is a sight to behold, as monstrous and forbidding as death itself. He is the judge and jury for all souls who pass into his realm, enumerating their sins and choosing their punishments, granting resurrection and favorable reincarnation to those who have lived virtuously and torture and miserable reincarnation to those who have not. He knows the date and time of each person’s forecasted death, and takes his duties extremely seriously, never letting an evil-doer slip by without punishment or a virtuous man go unrewarded.

Yama and Guanyin

One day, as a holy man was praying quietly in his cave in Tibet, a band of thieves broke in and began taunting him, stripping him of his goods and threatening his life. He begged them to spare him, but after terrifying him by beheading a bull and chasing him about, they cut his head off as well and left him to rot. When Yanluo heard from the man what they had done, his wrath was so great that he burst forth from the earth in the murdered man’s body and destroyed all of the thieves, drinking their blood from their skulls in his righteous wrath. Believing that all the people of Tibet must be as corrupt as the thieves, Yanluo resolved to destroy the entire country; in mortal terror, the people prayed to Guanyin, who saw Yanluo’s rampage and descended from heaven to counter it. She took on a form identical to Yanluo’s, so that as she entered battle with him he saw only himself everywhere, and was so confused that he ceased to fight and allowed her to persuade him to cool his rage.


God-Touched Nut_Meg