The Toad God is a supernatural creature that is being worshipped as a god by a mysterious and bizarre Mayan tribe that exists long before the sinking of the legendary continent of Atlantis, and the main antagonist of "The Thing on the Roof" of "The People of the Dark" collection of short stories by Robert E. Howard. He too share similarities with another dark entity of Lovecraftian nature known as The Master of the Monolith.
(Chamber of Chills#3 - BTS) - Very little is known about this great demonic beast or its actual name. The Toad God existed long before the Mayans colonized Central America and a mysterious temple was constructed by a strange race of men who had lived long before the sinking of Atlantis. These people worshiped strange otherworldly gods and constructed their temples throughout the world and hidden in dense jungles, sheer cliffs and subterranean caverns deep inside the Earth. The Toad God had a large basalt temple built in its honor and slept dormant within a crypt deep beneath the base of the structure. This crypt could only be entered via a ruby toad-shaped key that had been placed around the neck of the temple’s last remaining priest to safeguard the slumbering god. The Mayan tribes who later arrived in the area kept their distance from the Temple of the Toad, believing it to be a cursed place.
(Historical - "The Thing on the Roof") - For thousands of years, the Temple of the Toad God lay hidden until an explorer named Von Juntz happened upon the legends while exploring Central America in the 1890s. Much later in life, Von Juntz wrote a bizarre book titled Nameless Cults, detailing the Temple and a great treasure that could be found inside. The Temple of the Toad was explored many times and the expeditions of adventurers failed to find the treasure. This was due to lesser, inferior copies of Von Juntz’s book that were translated incorrectly after his death. Erwin, an Englishman from London, bought an original edition from a dealer in America. A fellow colleague named Tussmann was planning his own expedition to the Temple of the Toad and asked Erwin to assist him translate the book’s contents in hopes of discovering the secrets to finding the treasure.
(Chamber of Chills#3) - Arriving at the Temple, Tussmann along with some Mayan guides entered but were halted by a large sealed door to the crypt with a mummified corpse sitting in a stone throne. The Mayan guides protested about not wishing to be there but Tussmann shrugged off their advice and dismissed them. As the Mayans left, Tussmann, having knowledge about a key around the mummy's neck, took it and used it to open the heavy locked crypt door. While traveling downward with a flashlight in one hand and a pistol in the other, Tussmann was annoyed by a toad hopping slightly ahead of him in the darkness beyond. Eventually, he neared the bottom and discovered a great stone door that opened to his touch. Entering the room beyond, Tussmann to his horror came face-to-face with the unspeakable creature that was the Toad God and fired off a few rounds from his gun before quickly fleeing out of the Temple. Passing by the throne, he vaguely noticed that the mummy was strangely absent and then returned to his estate with only the Ruby Toad key. Erwin came to the estate at Tussmann's desperate request but upon arriving there, Erwin heard an odd sound of hooves off in the distance but dismissed it as being made from an ox somewhere on the estate. Inside the manor, Tussmann revealed that the temple’s treasure was a hoax but he became rattled by noises on the roof. Discussing his findings, Tussmann experiencing a sudden fit of madness, stormed off and locked himself inside his bedchamber. Erwin began reading excerpts from the Black Book and translated a passage that said the Temple's god is the Temple's treasure. Tussmann screamed and Erwin along with a manservant burst into the locked room. To their utter horror, they found Tussmann dead, crushed by a tentacle from an indescribable monster. The creature took flight into the night sky with the Ruby Toad key and returned once again to its lair within the Temple of the Toad. Erwin realized to his astonishment that what he had read was true: the Temple's god is the Temple's treasure.
Powers and Abilities
The Toad God was a virtually immortal creature and extremely ancient. It was likely a class III demon but seemed to lack any great intellect although it was quite cunning and able to track the location of the Ruby Toad key across the world. This beast probably possessed Class 10 strength and was highly resistant to injury. The Toad God had two tentacles for arms, a large bulbous body, powerful legs with hoof-like feet, a tail and a set of awkward-looking bat wings that enabled it fly. It is also possible that the Toad God was able to change its shape and form into amphibians or reptiles, and also communicate and control them. The Ruby Toad was a receptacle for the god’s power and it hunted down whoever possessed it.
- The Toad God maybe related to the Master of the Monolith but that has never been confirmed.
- The "People of the Dark" collection of stories by American author Robert E. Howard which were considered to be part of the Cthulthu Mythos, were first published in the comic book anthology Strange Tales of Marvel Comics in the June of 1932.