Monday, January 19, 2015

WoTR: Convincing the Churches, part 1

How I imagine Sarenrae or Shelyn clerics may look
(Dragon Age Inquisition)
If you're going to raise money for the Worldwound, you might as well have fun doing it.  Here are a few representative NPCs from a few of the Absalom churches that your PCs might like to contact.  After all, nobles are best found in soirees.  Clerics are best met in their churches, ideally with lay members and other clerics around so that they're reminded of their duties. 

Saphira, Lady of Intemperance of Cayden's temple, is a Varisian who runs the wooden meadhall in the Ascendant Court district.  She is pretty rough and ready, eager to throw off the chains of lawful oppression, and finds paladins rather irritating in their arrogant sincerity.  She's certain that should the Worldwound become any more than a local blight, she would have seen the signs in her faith.  She takes Cayden's silence on the matter as proof positive that Iomedae has it all squarely in hand.

ITEM OF INTEREST: She wears Daredevil boots that shimmer in vibrant shades of blazing red and burning orange that would allow her a +5 bonus to move through enemy's squares without provoking attacks of opportunity for up to 10 rounds per day and grants her a +1 bonus to strike those whose squares she's passed through - necessary for a pub owner.

QUEST TO IMPRESS: The Brazen Clutch (Dragons Unleashed) are in the Marketplace in the Coins, ready for sale.  One has already been sold to a Paracountess Helis Merciel (some advice in this post).  Saphira won't expect the PCs to free them but she will idly mention it as an example of how Absalom needs the help of her clerics most of all.  If they do free them, she will allow them to make a speech or give a DC 20 performance or diplomatic speech in the mead hall to rouse 1d6 adventurers + 1d6 for every 5 by which they beat the check.  Multiple characters can make individual rolls rather than simply aiding another, should they choose.
High Priestess Eleena Woodsong is a brisk female half elf 11th level cleric from the Shrine of Shelyn who is struggling to find beauty in the rather petty and cutthroat world of Absalom.  The Ivy District shrine is a garden of oaks, embraced by carefully cultivated and pruned rose bush vines, that surrounds a pristine pool often filled with swans.  Above the pool floats a single rose that changes colors with the seasons (white = winter, yellow = spring, fiery orange = summer, rust red = autumn).  There are benches around the clearing often occupied by lovers while artists and musicians sell their wares or practice their art around them.  The clerics tend the plants, offer suggestions to artists and provide advice to couples.  Marriage ceremonies are often conducted here so long as the love seems pure.

ITEM OF INTEREST: Simply to aid in her frequent appointments, Elena Woodsong wears Getaway Boots forever attuned to her shrine so that she can head out and then as a full-round action return to her temple as though by teleport.

QUEST TO IMPRESS: Eleena Woodsong has watched a number of performers go missing when they didn't pay their tithes to Alain Always.  She wants to know what happens to them.  If the PCs choose to take up this quest, they can either bait him by themselves appearing to be an upstart performer or through using spells such as Detect Thoughts while others are talking to him.  Alternatively they can simply tail him and watch him make arrangements to have non-tithe-paying performers rounded up on petty charges and held until the next Statue Street run.  Such performers are released last so that they are least likely to escape the gorgon.  Revealing this crime to Eleena or, better yet, to the general public, will net Eleena's support and she will encourage a multitude of performances about difficulties in Mendev - raising the values made at auction by 10%.

Scion Lady Xerashir of House Shamyidd, Bey of Sarenrae, can most often be found after her dawn prayers at the Temple of the Shining Star and while she is willing to listen she states that there are evils everywhere - pointing from slavery to plague to rumours of the Whispering Tyrant's continued influence in Ustalav.  Their resources are thin and moving her clerics from this place, needed as they are, to die on the open fields holds little value to her.  Her church has several open air healing pavilions and she is willing to allow them the chance to speak with the various clerics but will send word ahead, sullying the crusade's name, as she fears losing too many of her own on a hopeless cause. 

ITEM OF INTEREST: She wears a slender silver bracelet worked in an intertwined design of three flowers that can be identified as acacia, apocynum and bilberry that symbolizes concealment, treachery and falsehood.  It's a Seducer's Bane bracelet.

QUEST TO IMPRESS: She can be shamed by signs and stories of obvious redemption such as tiefling PCs and would be intrigued enough by the idea of the Purity Forge that she will enlist a small band of Sarenrae's faithful (10 individuals, only 2 clerics) to discover the secrets of the forge so that it can be used elsewhere.  For each major NPC the PCs have managed to redeem (or tales of groups of NPCs redeemed), she will throw in a shipment of enough cure light wounds potions to serve a medium sized army (or one army thrice) that will take three months to arrive as she becomes hopeful of what will soon come.

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