Nera thought she had never seen a man so strong, which was funny, really. The rocks Johr piled onto the cairn were so small. She sat with her back to his travel bags and watched him wander across the blasted land in search of stones. Pulling her cloak around her shoulders the wind played with the expensive fur of the collar and hood. She squinted into the dimming light as Khor’s chariot raced west.
The light of the day faded away and still her guide laboured to shape the cairn. She knew only too well what it was like to lose a brother. The Wastes were no place to bury loved ones, but sometimes the gods do not give you a choice.
The Ley Line judges have made their decisions, and today we are happy to announce the SIX finalists and their stories for this contest (presented in alphabetical order by author’s last name):
“A Place Without Time” by David Amburgey
“The Apple Thief” by Maggie Hoyt
“A Done Deal, a Final Act, and a Parting” by Chris Lozaga
“Lantern Festival” by Jeff Quick
“Five Finger Discount” by Stephen Rowe
“Ice Maiden’s Heart” by Troy E. Taylor
Congratulations go to each of these authors! We will be posting the stories next week and setting up public voting after the stories are all out there for you to read.
In the meantime, many thanks go to those who submitted their work and the excellent judges who made time to read and rate these stories. Again, congratulations, finalists!
Previously I wrote about how the paladin should be expanded to allow different alignments, then laid out rules on how to adapt the paladin for the lawful neutral and lawful evil alignments. While the justicar and despot are much different than the standard paladin, they at least share the same rigid ethical structure. Today I change tack and lay out rules for playing a paladin with the same morals but much different ethics than the standard paladin. I bring you my rules for playing a chaotic good paladin, one I call the free one. To use these rules you will need to have the Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Core Rulebook.
The Free One
The free one, or free man or free woman as may be, is a champion of freedom, love, and glory, and is usually found in the service of such gods. Ironically, despite their inclinations, they rarely serve deities with concepts like justice in their portfolios; the tenets of such deities tend to support the laws and courts of the realms, and the free one knows all too well how the letter of the law counts more than the spirit in such places. These paladins believe in the greater good, in bringing evil to heel, and in fighting oppression in all its forms. They are often looked down upon in “polite” society, since their code often views taxes and strict laws as oppression.
That old farmhouse that was abandoned ages ago might just have an overgrown family plot upon it. And adventurers are pretty good at finding such things—and discovering that there might be more to the area than they think! You can use any of these details as starting points to flesh out some other interesting things if the player characters choose to look around a bit more. If you want to roll randomly for one, use the handy number provided with each entry to figure out your result on a d12. You can also pick the one that works for the area in which your characters currently linger.
Until Deep Magic comes out, James Eder continues to provide us with groups and more to help satisfy our craving for magic. Take a look…
The Band of the Black Shroud
A particularly vicious group of Dark Stalkers, the Band of the Black Shroud seeks to rob those who travel on the paths above their homes. Often times, an hour or two before dawn, a greater degree of darkness will fall upon the camp of travelers and the Dark Stalkers will erupt out of the mist, driving minions like the Dark Creepers before them. The most dangerous targets (awake or asleep) are usually targeted first, followed by the rest of the group, though the Black Shroud does prefer to strike at weakly defended targets whenever possible. Treasure is quickly gathered and taken down toward their homes, and cunning traps disguise the entrances so as to avoid pursuit by high-minded adventurers who are sticking their noses into things.