Real Name: Derwyddon
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Derwyddon’s powers directly related to his Druidic religious beliefs. He used magic, granted him by the gods Hu and Ceridwen, to cast certain druidic spells. These spells included the ability to heal other humans using special amulets, serpents’ eggs, or mistletoe, to grow or form sacred oak trees for protection, to grant or take mobility from stone gargoyles, and to reverse the effects of the artifact, the Pipes of Pan. Derwyddon was granted extremely long life, granted by either his gods or by the sea sprites who rescued him from death. The full effects of his powers are surely unknown.
Derwyddon belonged to the religion and society of Druids, based in Britain and Gaul centuries ago, at a time when faeries, gnomes, and undines roamed the earth. They worshipped Hu, the sun god, and Ceridwen, Hu’s wife. Derwyddon underwent the rites of passage to earn the white robes of the priesthood, one of which involved being buried alive. The night before his final test, he forsook his promise of abstinence and committed sin with a woman he loved. The final test required him taking a boat out on the ocean alone so his soul could be judged. He felt guilty and shameful. A storm sky, which he believed was sent by his gods, swept him overboard. He would have drowned, but sea sprites saved him and kept him alive. He remained under the ocean, in a state of preservation, for centuries.
Derwyddon finally awoke in a world where the Druidic religion had no place. He grew bitter and angry, especially toward Christianity. He began wandering the world aimlessly.
Derwyddon came across a Christian church that had been built on a place of mystic power, and noted the stone gargoyles that had been built atop the church as reminders of the druidic age. Derwyddon sensed that the stone creatures were sentient, and in pain because they lacked mobility. The bitter druid used his magic to grant them mobility. As the stone of the gargoyles turned to flesh, Derwyddon encouraged them to have their vengeance on the world. After the gargoyles ravaged and tortured many humans, Derwyddon came to his senses and turned their flesh back to stone, but many of the gargoyles were able to escape.
Derwyddon spent centuries tracking down the gargoyles he’d released, presumably to stop them once and for all.
Derwyddon approached church in Christiansboro, Virginia, where he sensed the evil of the Gargoyles, who’d only recently fled from there.
Derwyddon sensed the evil the Gargoyles were practicing in the world at that moment, and realized that it was all his fault. Derwyddon entered the church and saw Germaine (a deceased French prostitute whose spirit was animating a clay form of Elaine Willoughby, the childhood love of Isaac Christians) tormenting the mortal Isaac Christians. (Christians had inhabited one of the gargoyle’s bodies and acted as a hero for months, and had just been tricked by one of the gargoyles into switching his form back). Derwyddon ordered Germaine to stop her behavior, and healed Christians’ wounds with an amulet and mistletoe. When Germaine tried to flee, he stopped her by causing plants to grow and bar her way. Derwyddon explained his origins to the mortals. Derwyddon told Christians that the two of them were responsible for stopping the evil of the Gargoyle. Derwyddon led Christians and a reluctant Germaine to Blackston, Virginia, where he sensed the Gargoyles had taken control.
As they entered the town, Gargoyle approached Derwyddon and told him to take notice. By playing the Pipes of Pan, Gargoyle had turned the town and its occupants into a world like the Druidic one Derwyddon grew up in, but Derwyddon quickly noticed that it emphasized the evil and rejected it. Gargoyle ordered the gargoyles to kill Derwyddon, and they descended on him to beat him to death. Derwyddon quickly unleashed a spell that turned his attackers back to stone, and then used up most of his powers fighting off the transformed humans that attacked him. Derwyddon took refuge in a church with Christians and Germaine, and used his last remaining energy to surround the building with sacred oaks, which would protect them temporarily. Derwyddon collapsed after stating that his gods were dead. While unconscious, Derwyddon felt a light enter him, and realized that Hu and Ceridwen were not dead. He went out for the final fight, determined to be atoned once and for all. He cast a spell that reversed the effects of the Pipes of Pan, freeing the humans. Gargoyle turned bio-mystic forces on Derwyddon, trying to kill him, until Christians intervened. Feedback caused Christians and Gargoyle to switch forms again, then Christians slew the mortal form, leaving Gargoyle without a body. Gargoyle’s soul entered a stone gargoyle on top of the church, and Derwyddon decided to leave him there. Derwyddon, feeling as though he’d come full circle at last, simply walked away after revealing to Christians that the soul of his love, Elaine, was now in possession of the clay form.
First Appearance: Gargoyle (1985) #1
View a chronological listing of this character's appearances
Civil War: Battle Damage Report (2007)
#1 New Avengers (2005)
- 'Love and Death!!'#2
- 'Burning Bright: the Gargoyle's Tale'#3
- 'Lost Souls: The Druid's Tale'#4
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