Category Archives: Uncategorized

“One Night in Greyhawk”

Lyrics

“Grayhawk, D&D setting
And the players don’t know that the DM is getting
The creme de la creme of the game world
In a boxed set with everything but G. Gygax

Time flies doesn’t seem a minute
Since the Trithereon temple had the PCs in it
All change don’t you know that when you
Play at 10th level there’s no ordinary venue

It’s Perrenand or the Bone March or Highfolk or
Or this place!

One night in Greyhawk and you’ll find a cloister
There are priests in temples but the heals ain’t free
You’ll find a mage in every bar’s gone roister
And if you’re lucky then the mage’s a sidhe
I can feel an encounter sliding up to me

One town’s very like another
When your head’s down over your character sheet, brother

It’s a drag, it’s a bore, it’s really such a pity
To be ranting at the bard, not exploring under the city

Whaddya mean?
Ya seen one crowded, polluted, stinking sewer
Otyughs, dark oubliette
Some are set up in the under Tailor Street

Get real, you’re talking to a gamist
Whose every roll soon become famous”

With apologies to songwriters: Tim Rice / Benny Goran Bror Andersson / Bjoern K. Ulvaeus

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Rogue Genius Games and Pathfinder 2nd Edition

While RGG doesn’t have access to the Pathfinder 2e rules yet, we DO know we will want to support that game system.
One of our first releases is almost certainly going to be an update of the Time Thief.
That means it’s a good idea to get our concept of what an “iconic” Time Thief looks like settled.
So, we sent Jacob Blackmon an art order, and with just a little feedback, we got this.
I don’t know exactly what a 2e Time Thief can do yet, but I know what she looks like!

Image may contain: 1 person, smiling

 

But… THEN what?

There will be new ideas, and new freelance opportunities, and new projects, of course.

But I am also VERY likely to update some of our most popular Pf1 classes to Pf2.

So,

Noting that things I update for Pathfinder 2e is going to have a reconsideration of all their elements (rules, themes, art, style, niche, tone, and so on)– because when you know better you do better, and goodness knows I have learned a bunch over the past decade, and:

Keeping in mind I expect the Pf2 Time Thief is already on this list and should also handle the Time Warden:

And that I suspect some Pf1 classes will be beter served as archetypes in Pf2:

AND that I am likely to wait for official Paizo rules for some game elements (like hexes) before I build a class using them (though I could redesign to not use them):

What RGG classes would you be most interested in seeing updated to Pf2 earlier, rather than later?

Anachronist Adventures classes (and likely the rest of that book, too)
Archon/Riven Mage
Armiger
Cruorchemist
Death Knight
Death Mage
Dragonrider
Godling
Hellion
Magister
Mosaic Mage
Shadow Assassin/Shadow Warrior
Templar
Vanguard
War Master
Witch Hunter
Hybrid Class — Blasphemer
Hybrid Class — Fury
Hybrid Class — Mountebank
Hybrid Class — Opportunist
Hybrid Class — Possessed
Hybrid Class — Psychemist
Hybrid Class — Shifu

Let me know in the comments, or at https://twitter.com/Owen_Stephens, or at owen.stephens@gmail.com, or at https://www.facebook.com/OwenK.C.Stephens

Or, if you are a Patron, at my Patreon! https://www.facebook.com/OwenK.C.Stephens

 

Speculative Fiction Show Ideas

Speculative Fiction Show Ideas

Look, Amazon and Netflix are greenlighting everything else, so…

“SPOOKED” When the randomly-selected patsy of a deep cover spy mission turns out to have an honest-to-magic necromancer as a sister, spies and ghosts face off in a world that runs from honeypots to ceramic urns and pits undercover against undead.

“BLACK SPOT” For centuries the Order of the Black Spot have been hunting and killing pirates, working outside of government and outside the law. Now the King, Queen, and Jack of Spades, the royal family ruling the order, have mysteriously turned to the FBI to give information about bringing down both the remaining pirate organizations of the world, and their own Order.

“CRIME AND CHAOS” When the government becomes the problem, who can the people turn to? A mastermind thief, greedy con, addicted stage magician, reformed pacifist ex-assassin, gray hat hacker, and disillusioned counterfeiter form the ultimate crime league, with their only targets the corrupted forces who now control law and order.

“PLAN Z” Dozens of corporations and more than a few terrorist groups have access to a weaponized virus that creates undead, and the governments of the world are endlessly dealing with breakouts and pandemics in a desperate bid to prevent the zombie apocalypse. When a zone is too hot for any human to be sent in, the trained, international, experimental squad of soldiers who are immune carries to the zombie virus are sent in as Plan Z.

“GOTHIC JUSTICE” When Lady Penanggalan went to sleep in 1800, she expected her monstrous partners to wake her in a century, as agreed. Now it’s 2017, and she’s discovered not only did the other Gothic Scions betray her, most have turned to run organized crime. She is pissed, and ready to work with human law if that’s what it takes to gain her revenge. But the most powerful of those scions, the dreaded Akephaloi or “Headless Man” knows more about Lady Pen’s sleep and why her allies betrayed her than she could ever guess.

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My PaizoCon Schedule, 2019!

It’s PaizoCon time!

Here’s when I will be where!

Thursday

4-6pm, 10pm-on: Hanging around the Doubletree. Don’t be shy, come say hi! heck, if you want to be able to pitch things to me later, and you see me, “You mentioned on your blog anyone could ask for a business card” is a great conversation-opener!

Friday

9am — Starfinder Delve! I am running 20-minute slots on a table near registration. I have SUCH robo-wonders to kill you with!

10am — Pathfinder 2e Delve! One table over. Kill-you, kill-you,. kill-you is three actions, right?

11am — I’m hanging out near the Seminar rooms, keeping an eye on things.

12-12:50pm — Seminar: Industry Insider: How do Ideas Become RPG Products? (Cascade 8) It’s just me, so come with your questions!

1-1:50pm — Lunch! Almost certainly in the hotel restaurant or nearby table. Again, come say hi!

2-5:45pm — Into the Emerald Star Spire, part 11. Six years. 10 conventions. One persistent dungeon. I believe all the seats are full.

6pm-On: Floating about at the hotel!

Saturday

9am — Pathfinder 2e Delve! I promise to use the new rules. I don’t promise to use them correctly. 🙂

10am-12:45 pm — Lunch! Or… Brunch! Or, look I’ll need food from somewhere. 🙂

1-5:45pm — Into the Emerald Star Spire, part 12. I’m giving them bigger plasma cannons this year. How far can they get? Again, I think this is full.

7pm — Preview banquet! I have many hats in this industry, but I’ll have my Starfinder Design lead hat on for this event. Right? I mean… right?

10pmGrimmerspace launch party! (Cascade 13) Cash bar. Come say hi!

Sunday

9am — Pathfinder 2e Delve! How goofy am I as a GM b y Sunday? Come find out!

12pmRPG Writing and Editing Workshop! (Cascade 8) With two members of our AMAZING editing staff, including our Managing Editor Judy Bauer! Simple editing test included.

4-6pmOblivion Oath Live! Come see why Pickles are Magic! We play for an hour, do Q&A for an hour, and it’s all streamed!

Monday

10am-1pm — Gaming With Staffers! (Cascade 12 & 13) What game? I dunno! Let’s find out together!

The Bottomless Tombs, Intro

The Bottomless Tombs is a 1st-level Pathfinder-compatible adventure that is designed to offer some experiences not common to 1st-level play, but still totally appropriate for beginning characters.

It uses this map, with Cartography by Dyson Logos. The map is available for use free through a license from Dyson Logos, thanks to his Patreon. This is a spectacular service to the hobby, and I heartily encourage any fan of RPG maps to go support him!

Bottomless Tombs

 

The arrow in the lower-left-hand corner indicates north. The Bottomless Tombs are an ancient Merothian barrow near the town of Redstone… or whatever ancient culture and town make sense for your campaign.

The barrow is built off a single central shaft, which is choked with weeds and roots, and the rotting wreckage of several cranes and other excavation equipment a band of adventurers tried to use to reach the bottom a decade ago… before some disaster sucked in most of their equipment and they left.

The people of Redstone don’t talk about the Bottomless Tombs much, and most adventurers have ignored it for years.

But now, people in Redstone are getting sick and no medicine or magic keeps them well for long. This happened once before, 100 years ago, as a half-elf who has run the town;s general goods store for more than a ten decades–Merinn Longear–will tell the PCs. When a root dislodged the lid of a stone casket somewhere within the first few hundred feet of the shaft, the ghost of “Chagral Chagrot” that grave cursed the town with boils and fevers. Adventurers went into the tomb, cleared away the roots from Chagral Chagrot’s casket, set the lid back on, and the curse was lifted.

And Chagral Chagrot’s ghost gave each adventurer one Secret of Power as a reward.

Letters have been sent to the major church in the nearest big city, Hoard, but it will take weeks for it to arrive and help to be dispatched. By then, several children and elderly within Redstone will have died.

Merinn Longear has a great-grandson who is sick. She asks the PCs to descend into the Bottomless Barrow, find the casket of Chagral Chagrot, and put it right. She will happily give them all the rope, pitons, and climbing kits they can carry to assist with this, and offers a reward of 50 gp each, her century-old emergency fund, if they succeed.

Preparation

Redstone is not a large town, but it does have a population of almost 2,000 people. It has an aging 5th-level mayor, who is not much of a climber, and a 4th-level hedge witch, and a 3rd-level weather cleric, both of whom are happy to help prepare the PCs, but are needed in town to keep victims as well and comfortable as they can.

The PCs can do some research and asking around in town. Successful DC 14 checks with the following skills produce the listed information.

Diplomacy (gather information) — [1st check, or Knowledge (local)] The hedge witch has a store of sunrods (she has 10) she is likely to be willing to part with for a good cause (she is).

[2nd check] Some gnomes came to town asking about the Bottomless Tombs a few weeks ago, but they stayed only a day and left with no suggestion they were going there.

Knowledge (arcana) — Tombs of this kind were at one time used to bury genies, the long shaft being a way to ensure the element of air still had access to the graves of the air djinns.

Knowledge (dungeoneering) — Even if the tomb was totally emptied decades ago, chances are vermin have moved in, and possible goblins, mites, or other minor subterranearn humanoids. Also, it’s going to be dark. Bring lights.

Knowledge (religion) — Ghosts are one of the few forms of undead that aren’t almost always evil… but the majority still are. Even if destroyed, they can reform under the right conditions.

Other reasonable preparations can be made, but The Bottomless Tomb awaits!

Staging Area

Area 1: Entering the Shaft

Area 2: The First Passage

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Real Mental Health Issues: My Traumas (2)

This addresses and describes trauma I have suffered, and if you don’t have interest in knowing about that, or if it’s not in your mental health best interests to read about cruelty, assault, or being immobilized, don’t read this.

It’s okay. I’ll get back to imaginary creatures and game spells later. At my therapist’s recommendation, and with their support, I am both making a list of the potentially traumatic events in my life, and trying to nail down details about them I have forgotten.

It is exhausting, frightening, shocking work.

having been diagnosed with civilian PTSD, I also think it is important work for my own well-being.

This is a frank discussion and description of some of that trauma. If you’d rather not be exposed to that, it’s perfectly all right to skip this. I’ll go back to pastiche supervillains ideas and my take on politics and gaming later.

This content is mostly about alcoholism.

My father was an alcoholic. He and my mother tried to control his alcoholism with rationality and intelligence, because they were rational, intelligent people.

It did not work.

My father was never violent. In fact, I have never witnessed any violence against any member of my family except myself, and I have never witnessed any member of my family be violent except myself.

I have assumed, for my entire life, that since my father was never violent, there was no trauma to me associated with his alcoholism.

When drunk, my father made promises that not only would he not keep, he would not remember.

All the alcohol in the house I grew up in was kept in a cabinet that, after he had consumed the two drinks a night my parents thought was reasonable, my mother would lock.

Then, when he felt he needed more alcohol, my father either had to try to force the doors of that cabinet open just enough to pry a bottle loose with a bent coathanger, or go out.

He never drove to get alcohol, and never drove after having even one drink.

He did, however, call a taxi… of just take a walk. We lived 3 houses down from a bar and restaurant (The Mont, in Norman, OK), and late a convenience store was even closer,

As early as 5 or 6, if I woke up late at night and my father was going out, he might take me to the Mont as 10 or 11pm, after everyone else was asleep. I could sit in the restaurant section, and he’d sit right next to me, on the other side of the railing that demarcated the bar.

I learned to play chess with him, and later the game go, at that bar.

As I grew older, he was more likely to walk to the store, buy a bottle, and come back and we’d play games at home. My earliest game experiences–chess, go, checkers, pitch, and a civil war wargame/boardgame I don’t know the name of, were with my father, but only when he was drunk. We almost never got to finish those games, because he’d become too drunk to keep playing. Usually he’d fall asleep, or begin to cry about international politics he’d slurringly try to explain to me.

This was all I knew. To me, this was normal.

I did that less once I had friends, and could play games with them. No because I was avoiding my father, but because the window during which he could play got shorter and shorter, as he drank more, faster.

After my sister went to college, it began to be normal to come into the living room in the morning to discover my father had passed out after unlocking the door to come into the house, and we had, for an unknown period of time, been asleep with our front door held open by his body being slumped across our doorway.

My mother told my father to stop getting drunk at home, so he would take a taxi to a motel, and get drunk there, often paying people to spend time with him because he disliked drinking alone.

In my mid-to-late teens, I met some of the people he paid to spend time with him. They suggested I could pay them to spend time with me. They also suggested I could get the money to do so from my father and he wouldn’t even notice.

I am sure I could have.

My father was a sweet man who loved me, and was doing the best he could.

He and my mother were going to take my wife and I out to dinner on our first wedding anniversary–but he got too drunk and couldn’t do it. My mother had to call me, and confess he had moved out a few weeks before, and they hadn’t told me because they didn’t want to ruin my anniversary dinner.

My mother took us out without him.

About a year before he died, in an effort to get him to go back into rehab, I told him he was drinking himself to death.

He told me he knew, and that was what he wanted. He wanted to drink himself to death.

He did.

The Icosantheon. No 2 — Karrackar

The Icosantheon is a host of twenty deities bound not by a common origin, but by a united conservatorship of the immaterium that forms the sides and edges of the material plane.

2. Karrackar

Also known as the Loremaster, Shade Dragon, and Kobold King, Karrackar is generally depicted as a plump, cheerful dragon of rainbow colors so bright that all other hues look dim and shaded in his presence, or a Large kobold of similar coloration and girth. When depicted with a hoard, it is normally of books, scrolls, and fine food.

While Karrackar is clearly a kobold deity, most kobolds speak his name in hushed whispers. They fear the mighty god not because he might harm them, but because Karrackar finds kobolds adorable and if one draws his attention, the Shade Dragon will appear to hug, pet, and shower praise on the kobold endlessly. Kobolds so treated generally become great champions of knowledge and fairness… much to the annoyance of their clan-mates.

Karrackar is also the patron deity of those who have been abused, especially the young and weak. He can be called on to defend anyone bullied or systemically harmed, and in his Rainbow Sanctum is surrounded by children and others of all races he felt could only be protected by being taken from the mortal realm entirely. These he teaches, heals, and supports until and unless they are ready to return to the world.

Karrackar is the god of love of learning, speech, fair play, protecting the abused and downtrodden, and ancient things. Though many other pantheons have attempted to dismiss him as “merely” a minor dragon god, Karracker’s combination of vast good cheer, deep knowledge, and wicked wit generally force civilizations to accept him as a patron of the arts and lore, whether they want to or not.

While Karrackar is normally well-disposed toward all sapient beings, his rage can be aroused by those who abuse others, cruelty, and systemic injustice. Those kobold clans who have fully embraced him have generally done so after being driven from their hereditary lands without cause, and have learned the Kobold King can use his wisdom and knowledge to wreck terrible havoc on those who harm his charges. Once a people have angered Karrackar, the best way to appease him is to both cease lashing out at others, and build and fund sanctums where any creature can claim sanctuary as long as it does no harm to others. These sanctums are often homes for the oppressed and dispossessed, as well as great libraries and schools which do good works for the poor and injured.

All members of the Icosantheon respect Karrackar, even those who oppose him, and once ever century he hosts a great convocation in his Rainbow Sanctum where all gods are welcome to come under truce, revel, and discuss their differences.

*Karrackar is Neutral Good, and accepts worships of all non-evil alignments. he also accepts all kobolds and all those who have suffered abuse, regardless of their alignments. However, evil worshipers are constantly visited by dreams of care, love, and gentle teaching, until their alignments change or they reject Karrackar… though even then they are accepted back if they seek to change their ways.
*Karrackar’s colors are the rainbow, though his worshipers are free to select any color or colors they love and wear it in his honor.
*His favorite weapon is an enormous quill that can become a spear, longspear, or javelin.
*His favored animal is the bear.
*His servitors are the divine dragon-bears, and the celestial warpriests who are the abused he took to his Rainbow Sanctum, and who decided to return to the world to smite the hateful.
*His holy symbol is a twisting scroll that takes the shape of a dragon.
*His areas of concern are knowledge, fairness, community, acceptance, and fierce protection.
*His domains are Good (friendship), Knowledge (education), Protection (defense), Rune (language), Scaleykind (dragon), Sun (revelation), and War (tactics).

Many witches select Karrackar as their patron. These gain the ability in place of a hex to gain access to all cleric spells of the next spell level (beginning with cantrips) as spells known and available to prepare as a cleric of the same level as their witch level.

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The Icosantheon. No 7. Ovinnec

The Icosantheon is a host of twenty deities bound not by a common origin, but by a united conservatorship of the immaterium that forms the sides and edges of the material plane.

7. Ovinnec

The god of death, hunting, crops, and deception, Ovinnec is a god who appears in the form of various cats. Most famously he is depicted as a lean, comely man with an exposed chest and the head of a black cat, a black housecat, or a black tiger, though he can take the form of any male feline or feline-headed humanoids. Ovinnec is known by many names and forms in different cultures–dwarves often worship him as Grunuc Rat-Killer, elves as Olleanae the Living Night, and orcs as a one-eyed brown-skinned half-orc with a sabertooth tiger head called simply Slayer. Most cultures also name him as the Wild Visitor, though the origin of this title is not clear.

Ovinnec appears to be known and worshiped by all humanoid races who build permanent settlements, and most nomadic ones. Scholars often claim that the domestication of cats is so crucial to cultures being able to store grain and avoid undead that it only makes sense Ovinnec would send representatives to them. Some joke that Ovinnec taught cats to domesticate humanoids… which always makes worshipers of Ovinnec smile knowingly.

Ovinnec promotes hunting, as the domain of felines, and farming, as something that makes life easier for humanoids who should then provide cream, cheese, and blankets. As a hunter he is also a god of death, though unlike many gods of death his worshipers are not sworn foes of the undead. It’s not that Ovinnec wishes to destroy all undead–just to make sure they know he CAN, if they interfere with the delivery of his pleasure and comfort. While he promotes exploration, hunting, and farming, his one inviolate rule is that no feline is to be abused. If one attacks you or kills your crops, by all means defend yourself and your possessions. But to cause harm or pain where it is not needed it anathema.

He is rarely worshiped in large churches, but small shrines to him are extremely common–and are often filled with cats. Farmers claim anyone in need of a cat to hunt mice can go to any shrine of Ovinnec, and a kitten suitable to their needs will be present. Skeptics point out that if you have a place where a town feed and pet and protect cats, likely anyone can go find a kitten there. It is well known that Ovinnec is a close ally to Tazoteot, and his worshipers can operate out of their churches. This alliance is sometimes mocked as only existing because Tazoteot gives the best divine belly-rubs… a fact priests of Ovinnec have never denied.

*Ovinnec is Chaotic Good, but with an emphasis on chaos. His worshipers may be Neutral Good, Chaotic Good, Chaotic Neutral, or Chaotic Evil.
*Ovinnec’s colors are back, brown, orange, and white.
*His favored weapons are teeth and claws (including held claw-weapons), but also bows, scythes, and sickles. While other churches sometimes scoff that a god can’t have five ‘favorite’ weapons, worshipers of Ovinnec shrug and say “Maybe YOUR god can’t…”
*His favorite animal is the housecat, but also all cats and all creatures that are part cat.
*His servitors are sphinxes, but also cat sith, chimera, chinthe, and manticores. But not were-cats, who are reviled as creatures who steal cat form.
*His holy symbol is five curved slashes in the pattern of a cat scratch.
*His areas of concern are cats, death, deception, hunting, farming, and travel.
*His domains are Chaos (whimsy), Darkness (night), Repose (souls), Strength (ferocity), Travel (exploration), and Trickery (ambush and deception).

Druids who worship Ovinnec can only wildshape into feline forms (though they can be feline-shaped elementals) and can only have feline animal companions, but they get 6 skill points/level and add Bluff, Diplomacy, Escape Artist, Intimidate, Sleight of Hand, and Stealth to their class skill list. If they take a cleric domain as their nature bond, it must be one of Ovinnec’s domains or subdomains.

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2018 Capsule Review

In many ways, 2018 was a year of terrible things for me.
I began the year in full burnout.
I suffered a still undiagnosed medical issue causing hormone imbalances that lead to sudden and sometimes debilitating fatigue.
I tackled one of the toughest projects ever, and saw the conditions it was done under damage the morale and happiness of my collaborators.
I went to more conventions then any previous year… having agreed to them before my fatigue issues developed.
I stepped back from several industry positions I took great pride in.
I suffered direct, personal, untrue defaming attacks in several online venues.
Despite ALL that, I can’t call this a bad year. TOUGH yes, heck yes, but not BAD. I did a lot of things I am very proud of, including wrapping some projects that have been in the works literally for years. I survived conditions being stacked against me. I learned just how much support and love the community and my various employers and coworkers are willing to surround me with.
I made mistakes. There are things I still haven’t dealt with. There are things I haven’t even *started* to deal with.
But I leave the year full of hope and optimism, and it’s hard not to think of that as a sign of a good year.

Let Me Tell You About My Character (Velor)

Seriously, this is nothing more than a character history for a Pathfinder game I’m playing tonight. I wrote it yesterday, and decided to post it. There’s nothing particularly special here, it’s just a quick look at what I consider a typical character history for a d20 game PC.

Velor Varrison

Velor was born to the warrior-hero Varri in a yurt belonging to the Wildtusk following of the realm of the Mammoth Lords during the depth of winter. She passed him to a shaman within minutes of birth, saying the infant would carry her name but in no other way be a child of hers. She left the following within a day, and though her name and deeds echoed back to Velor many times, he never again laid eyes on her.

Her words were repeated to him many times, “In no other way a child of mine.” Velor knew Varri had great deeds to perform, and did not begrudge her wishing to do it without the responsibility of raising a child. At the same time, the two married women shamans who did the work of raising him took the duty of his upbringing seriously, though they owed him no debt of blood or kinship. Velor came to believe that responsibility could not be forced upon you, but once you took on some duty it could not be put down until fulfilled or another is found to replace it. Raising a child was a sacred duty, but the childless are more free to take risks and struggle to end the evils of the world without needing to worry about their need to care for a younger being.

Velor sought to follow in his birth-mother’s footsteps, to be strong and able to defeat evil. But his two mothers also ensured he was well-educated, by Mammoth Lord standards, and taught him the basics of the spiritual world and the gods. In particular, he was struck by tales of ancient Thassilon, an empire that had long since ended but the evils of which insisted on lingering to the modern day. Obsessed with the idea that the rightful time of Thassilon and all its works had passed, Velor learned the ancient language and considered becoming a shaman so he could use spirts to seek out and remove the evils of Thassilon. Following in his adoptive mothers’ footsteps, he began spending nights deep in the dark snow, alone, meditating and seeking to make contact with a spirit of his own, a creature to guide and serve him. Weeks passed. Then months. Then years.

Then something answered.

As Velor knelt in darkness, so far from the Wildtusk camp that its fires were little more than points of light, a great black rose grew from the ice before him. It spoke to him, a quiet whisper in the wind he could barely hear, but which also filled his mind with every word. But this was not a spirit, and what it offered was not to serve Velor but to burden him with responsibility.

Some things, it said, must end. And if they continue on past their time, they must be destroyed. Velor could become an agent of those endings, to shoulder the holy duty of annihilating those things that should no longer exist. It would cost him everything. He would have no child to carry on his name, would have no place within his following. He would be forever struggling, with no home to call his own and no rest or reward in this life for constant toil. He would suffer, and fail, and watch friends fall, and someday die, in abject failure, with blood on his lips.

And in the next life, he would be reforged as an even greater tool of rightful ends. He would continue to struggle, and destroy, and act as an agent of the sunset of evil, eternally. His path would not be that of his birth-mother, or his life-mothers, but the path of a weapon of the gods. A bringer of destruction, for those evils that could only be ended through violence. There would be no paradise for Velor. Only an eternal existence of bloody service, for the greater good. But Velor felt the righteousness of the Black Rose’s cause, and knew it sought only to destroy those things that were blights on the world, wicked forces that, like boils, could only be cured with a sharp blade.

Velor did not hesitate. He swore his service to the Black Rose, to become the executioner of those things that must be stopped. He took up arms, naming his javelins the Black Thorns, and the specially-forged curved two-handed blade Woundgiver. He stayed with his following long enough to ensure he was capable, that he could survive on his own and be useful to the Black Rose, rather than immediately placing himself in situations where others would have to risk themselves to save him.

But before he was sure he was ready, word came from a fur trader, that Thassilon’s name was spoken more and more to the South and West, in the lands of Varisia.

Within a week Velor left his home, to fulfil the responsibility he had undertaken.

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OGL Declaration: This post is not released under the OGL. No part of it is open content.