A strict reading of the imp companion's statistics implies they get 3/4 BAB, but because they are adding outsider hit dice they should be getting full BAB as far as I can see. Is this a deliberate choice or was it intended for the imp to get full BAB?
Quick couple of questions about the Diabolist imp companion. Since they are adding outsider hit die, not animal hit die, does an imp companion have full BAB? Herolab seems to think they do.
Additionally, because the imp's type is outsider, do they have all simple and martial weapon proficiencies?
Edit: Finally, the text for imp companion says they are "similar to an animal companion". For the purposes of feats and alternate racials, are they counted as an animal companion?
For Pathfinder Society play, I was looking at creating a Diabolist (http://www.d20pfsrd.com/classes/prestige-classes/other-paizo/c-d/diabolist ). I'm having a little trouble with the imp companion's statistics.
- Is the imp an animal companion for the purposes of feats, classes, alternate racial abilities such as a human's Eye for Talent, etc?
Herolab, my usual go-to source, insists that it does have full BAB, does have the weapon proficiencies, but does not have the damage reduction and fast healing. Except for the BAB part, this seems to be legit.
Oh wow, can't believe I won! Woot. :D Heaps of really stiff competition, so I guess it came down to the toss of a coin (roll of a D20?) in the end.
Regarding Bigdaddyjug's question, yes, the character was retired after that session, and Zaheeda was retired at 12 (that game made her 12). I had considered retiring her as dead, it was a pretty awesome and very Paladin-y death (used Paladin's Sacrifice to save another character, then died next round due to full attack + greatclub crit), but if I didn't I couldn't write this!
Time to spill a little secret for Jeff Mahood... I hate paladins too. ;) This was my first one in all my time of playing D&D and I started with the old Eye of the Beholder games (aka early 2nd Edition). It was a distinct challenge for me and I enjoyed it wholeheartedly. Zaheeda cured me of my Paladin-hate.
I loved Zaheeda for all the little details. Her full plate was called "Faith" (because "a paladin's armour is faith"), her weapon was originally a wedding gift (heirloom weapon) which had some cool in-story reason for getting changed due to the errata for that trait (see below).
Every time I made a save, I'd say a little thing:
Fort - "A paladin's body is iron."
If she got full attacked, then "A paladin's armour is faith" came out.
It was a fun, powerful, interesting character and Dawnstriker, that lecherous but playfully funny horse, was probably the most interesting and awesome bit.
If I ever need to play the character again, I have a "Getting The Band Back Together" story kicking around in my head, but for now... Zaheeda's been through a lot, I'm content to let her rest.
Some other stuff I've written for the character is here:
(This regarded a subplot about her husband and comprised a series of letters that I'd open at appropriate times during games, such as when the GM went to the bathroom or the like, or after)
A picture of the character is here:
King of the Storval Stairs #4–04 (933 words):
Dear Venture-Captain Sheila Heidmarch,
Please excuse the shake in my hand. Returning from Pharasma's embrace leaves a mark on the body that can take some time to fade. It was not my first brush with the Lady of Graves, and as soon as I am back in the Grand Lodge I hope that the restorative magic of the Pathfinders will purge the harrowing from my soul and restore my body to health.
After then I will leave you all forever.
This decision has not been made lightly, and I will attempt to explain as best I can, but I know you will not understand. Many will not. I apologise for this in advance.
Some say paladins do not know fear. I humbly count myself as one of their number, so I say this with the confidence of first hand experience.
They could not be more wrong.
A paladin lives with fear every second of every day. Their fears are not the fears of the common folk; fears of death, pain, suffering. Fearing the loss of their friends and family. Fearing poverty or disease or dismemberment.
Instead, a paladin fears that their great power will lead them to become a tyrant. A paladin fears they will be unable to prevent the suffering of the innocent, or that justice will escape the wicked. They fear that they will be unable to hold themselves to their own self-imposed, entirely unreasonable ideals. They fear that their swords and their strength will not be enough to keep back the ever-encroaching darkness.
They fear, yes, but there is a power behind them stronger than fear. A power that drives them to greatness. One that heals wounds, protects the innocent and inspires the downtrodden.
Most commoners assume that a paladin lives a life of chastity, of humble things, of prayers and rituals punctuated by heroic battles. They assume that theirs is an emotionless existence, a hollow one of mindless service until death.
They, too, could not be more wrong. I know of such lives, of empty servitude and toil. A paladin is nothing like this.
A paladin loves with all their heart. They possess a voracious adoration of life and all its many pleasures, bound to a thirst for joy that cannot be sated. They love everyone from the greatest king to the humblest peasant, and they love them so completely and utterly that all their thoughts are bent towards serving them. They give of themselves unquestioning and unhesitatingly, surrendering their youth, their health and—far, far too often—their lives. Every piece of their being is gifted in love and service to others.
I tell you that paladins feel fear... the curtain of darkness that falls over the mind and drives it to selfish purposes, but their unbridled love banishes the feeling just as torchlight banishes the night.
When the giant's club crushed my skull to paste during our expedition to the Storval Stairs, a paladin returned me from Pharasma's embrace. It was my dear friend Rita, a gnome so full of life and love that sometimes I feel her tiny body could not possibly hold it all.
But when I awoke and saw her, seeing with eyes made whole once again, I felt a terrible pain in my heart that I knew was not a remnant of being dragged back from the grave. Her youthful, joyous smile at seeing me live again could not be returned in kind. Even our combined love for all that is good in this world could not banish the shadows on my soul.
I have too many doubts, and I have spilled too much blood in my service to the Pathfinder Society. I reason it away; I tell myself that the giants we slew by the handful were wholly committed to evil and that our purpose was noble. This rationalisation calms my nightmares, sometimes, but there are so many other deaths by my hands. So many lives ended. I cannot excuse them all. How many orphans have I made? How many husbands, wives, children and siblings howl to the sky in grief because of what I have done?
We are Kings of the Storval Stairs, but that metaphorical crown is irrevocably stained with blood. If this is what it means to be a Pathfinder, to stand atop the broken bodies of our enemies, to kill dozens over a tiny strip of land, I cannot help but feel that this victory is hollow and that the full price of it will be paid in the next life. I see the encroachment of those shadows, I feel the fear, but I can summon no love to banish it.
How can I love a stranger when I cannot love myself?
(the remainder of the letter is stained with dried tears)
My best friend and loyal steed, the celestial horse Dawnstriker... I think he will understand the least. I treasure him like the brother I never had. Always has he been a source of courage for me, his brown eyes never judging, and it is with a great pain that I release him from service.
Enclosed is my wayfinder, a letter for him, and enough coin to dispatch a wizard to his home plane to deliver it. This is my final act of cowardice. He deserves so much better. I will regret this action for the rest of my life, but I cannot bear to tell noble Dawnstriker in person that I have fallen.
I am so very, truly sorry.
In grief and shame,
Liberator Zaheeda of the Silver Crusade, former paladin in Sarenrae's service, former Pathfinder.
Sanguinaxia watched with supernaturally intelligent eyes as the elven wizard she kept on retainer began the magic to save her son.
Many would think the wicked red dragons uncaring for all save themselves, but even these purveyors of vile thoughts and deeds held the safety of the next generation, their own blood, in high regard. The hatchling was her last surviving child and, although dragonkind live a long time, eventually they too faced Pharasma’s judgement. The only two ways to leave a mark on the world when they vanished were through deeds, or through blood.
Sanguinaxia was too cautious to have her deeds provide her legacy, having seen so many of her kind fall at the business end of spears and blades, so blood was the only way to cement a lasting impact on Golarion.
She would not see her legacy die today.
Vaarden withdrew a small pouch from his reagent bag which seemed much larger on the inside than it did on the outside. The pouch’s contents, a pinch of powdered diamond, was upended into a small clay bowl, then the pouch returned to Vaarden’s reagent bag.
“Diamond dust, for persistence.”
The next ingredient was a small vial of a glowing blue liquid. The elf added a single drop of the fluid to the bowl, which hissed as it touched the powder, creating a small cloud of cyan fumes that rose with a flash of light.
“Liquid catalyst, for potency.”
Sivian the gnome, as though expecting what would come next, extended his hand. Vaarden drew a slender elven dagger from his hip with his other hand and pierced the tip of Sivian’s finger, letting the crimson fluid drip into the bowl. He then crouched beside the bleeding dragon hatchling, using the vial to collect some of its red, molten blood, which was in turn added to the mixture.
“Blood of both parties, for binding.”
The delay seemed agonizingly slow to Sanguinaxia. Her acute draconic senses could tell much of her hatchling’s status; the rate of his breathing, his heartbeat, the faint twitch of a leg or his tail. Life was leaving him faster, it seemed, than Vaarden was able to work.
Another pouch left Vaarden’s reagent bag, and this one wiggled and roiled as he upended it, tipping a half-dozen live spiders into the mixture. Sivian handed Vaarden a pestle and the elf ground the living creatures, the blood, the blue fluid and the diamond into a thick blue paste.
“Death, to conquer death.”
Vaarden dipped a finger into the mixture, then took it to Sivian’s forehead, dragging it across his flesh. Where the finger moved a bright blue trail was left, inscribing a mark that Sanguinaxia recognised as a rune in the draconic language: the rune of binding. The action was repeated on Sivian’s forehead.
“A mark of binding completes the ritual.”
Sanguinaxia inhaled, watching as Vaarden closed his eyes. “Repeat after me,” he said.
“Swear to bind this flesh to mine,”
“And forever shall our paths be one,”
“Until Sarenrae’s last dawn fades from the world and everything returns to dust.”
The body of the gnome and the dragon hatchling were enveloped in a faint light that started at the edges of their form and spread out until both were merely blobs of glowing blue luminescence. Sanguinaxia’s cavern was bathed in the bright radiance and she squinted, trying to make out what was happening. Her draconic senses could feel the palpable waves of energy radiating out from both of them and, most reassuringly, she could hear her hatchling’s heartbeat strengthen.
A shriek stole her attention. The gnome’s form writhed in agony, thrashing around and clawing at the mark on his forehead as though it were burning him. The scent of seared flesh filled her nose.
“Wizard!” she cried, “Is the binding complete?”
“Quiet!” Vaarden shouted in return, his voice high pitched, concentration wrinkling his face. “The spell is at its apex!”
Sanguinaxia stared, wide eyed, as white bolts of energy bounced between her child and the gnome, each one seeming to cause the two bodies to jump and jerk as though in pain. Smoke rose from the mark on the gnome’s face and he pitched forward, slumping into unconsciousness. The light faded, once again bathing the cavern in darkness. Sivian didn’t move, his breathing faint and his heartbeat quiet, seeming to be as wounded as her child was.
The mighty dragon cared not for the fate of the gnome, though, and all her attention was on the hatchling.
For a moment nothing happened. The hatchling’s faint breathing was mirrored by that of the gnome’s. Then he inhaled a gasp, jerking his head up, wide eyed, looking around him.
“What in the brackish hell of Phrasma’s undergarmets?”
Sanguinaxia stepped up to him, smiling a relieved, wide smile. “My son,” she said, her voice echoing around the expansive cavern, “you’re alive.”
“I am indeed,” he answered, holding up a foreclaw, inspecting it curiously. “The binding was a success, then?”
Sanguinaxia’s smile faded. “How did you know of this?”
The hatchling tapped on the side of his draconic skull, just before his left horn. “Sivian’s memories are within me,” he explained, “in a manner of speaking. We are not the same, but we are not entirely different either. I see his mind, his memories, his thoughts. Kindred spirits we are.”
Sanguinaxia draped her claws around her child’s body, drawing him close, closing her eyes and giving the hatchling a tight, lingering squeeze. “Kherolan, I thought I lost you.”
The hatchling shook his head. “Kheroldan was who I was,” he said, “and that word is not as... accurate, now.”
“Surely you do not wish to be called Sivian,” Sanguinaxia said, her tone dripping with displeasure. The hatchling, to her infinite relief, snorted derisively.
“To bear the name of a fey? I would not belittle myself so, mother.” He paused in momentary consideration. “Instead, I take the name Servare. ‘To Be Saved’ in our language. I find it... fitting.”
“Servare,” Sanguinaxia said, testing the word on her tongue. “Not my first choice of word, but fitting.” Thick, joyous tears rolled down the red dragon’s face as she dipped her snout and kissed the top of the hatchling’s head. “My son by any other name is still my son.”
Silence reigned for a time, then Vaarden coughed to break the spell. “We have yet to discuss the matter of payment,” he said.
Sanguinaxia waved her claw dismissively towards the deeper part of the cavern. “Take an item from my horde, for your ‘society’. Any, as you wish, I care not. None are more precious than my blood.”
She could smell his hesitation. “The Society does indeed value artifacts,” Vaarden explained, “but they also desire... the service of powerful creatures.”
“A favour I will owe each of the faction heads,” she answered, “and more.”
“A tempting offer,” answered Vaarden, his tone suggesting that he was expecting something more.
“What do you want, fleshling?” Sanguinaxia snarled, her patience running short. “Speak plainly, or you shall not be the only wizard who feels the heat of my breath today.”
“We have given your son life,” Vaarden said, “and done you both a great service. It seems fitting that we expect a service from you. If it would please you, we could settle the debt fairly easily. You have learned, today, that dragon hatchlings are at their most vulnerable while they are young. You cannot be in all places at once, and even with all your strength, your might, you could not protect your child from harm. None of us are as strong as you, lady dragon, but our numbers are many. If you would permit it, I have authorization to allow your son to apply to join the Pathfinder Society... his bondmate, included.”
At the mention of the bondmate Sanguinaxia turned her gaze back to the gnome. The creature seemed entirely inert, unmoving and barely alive. How terribly, she mused, that creature must have feared his final fate to trade oblivion for unconsciousness.
Sanguinaxia turned back to Vaarden. “I offer you all the riches of a dragon’s horde, and yet you take what is most valuable to me?”
“The service of a dragon, even a young one, is valuable to many.”
“Fifty years in the life of one of our kind is not so long,” she admitted, “and as you have astutely indicated, my son will be better protected in the halls of the Grand Lodge. Perhaps this is agreeable to me.”
“The decision is ultimately yours,” Vaarden said, “and Servare’s, of course.”
The hatchling twisted his neck, looking up to his mother. “Fifty years is not so long,” he said, “and I will need my strength if I am to become as powerful as you are.”
Sanguinaxia considered, turning the prospect over and over in her mind before giving a slow, accepting nod. “Fifty years of my son’s service,” she said, “and not one day longer.”
“Not one day longer. So swear I, Vaarden, on my life.”
Servare moved away from his mother, stepping beside the fallen gnome. He casually hooked a claw under the unconscious fey’s body and draped him over his back. Then he moved to Vaarden’s side.
“I’ll see you again soon, mother,” he said.
“Soon,” Sanguinaxia promised, and then the two vanished with a whine-pop, leaving the mother dragon alone in her cave with nothing but her riches and five decades of waiting for her precious son to return to her.
Sanguinaxia the Bloodletter, the crimson dragon, watched her hatchling's blood continue to trickle onto the stone floor and knew, despairingly, that her son's heart grew weaker. The paladin's blade had done its work well.
She hated the paladins beyond all other mortal fleshbags. Infernal servants of the do-gooder gods, they could bless their weapons to slice through a dragon's considerable defences, bypassing their supernatural resistance to harm, their iron scales, the tough bone and sinew beneath. Even a humble blade of mundane manufacture became a terrible weapon in their hands.
They were the worst of monsters. Their hearts knew no fear, their swords sharp and their bodies strong.
Not strong enough, though. That paladin's crumpled body lay nearby, her bones broken by the mother dragon's incomprehensible rage. The intruder party had a wizard, too, and his burned corpse still smoldered nearby. All that was left of their archer was a pair of smoking boots.
A dragon's wrath was a mighty sight to behold, especially to murderous fleshbag intruders unwelcome in her lair. Although she desired vengeance, the crimson dragoness had not pursued the fleeing, broken remanence of the invaders when they had wisely chosen to withdraw. Her attention was drawn elsewhere.
The paladin had mortally wounded her son.
Red dragons were almost exclusively chaotic and extremely wicked, vain creatures without a care for those they considered less than themselves, which at most times was almost everyone. Sanguinaxia was no different, holding even other members of her species in open and abject disdain, but sometimes they had their uses.
“Hold fast to courage, my son,” she said, leaning down to bump her nose against the broken form of the hatchling, exhaling a thick sooty cloud of ash over his body through her nose, trying to keep the fire of life stoked within him. “Salvation your way comes.”
On cue, a faint whine filled the air followed by a dull pop. A tall, lanky elven man with a permanent scowl affixed to his face and a pale, sickly gnome appeared in her lair. Sanguinaxia’s nostrils flared as their stench, sweat and oil and rancid perfumes washed down with the faint tinge of human, assaulted her nose.
Fleshlings, willingly invited to her lair. The thought rankled her.
“I am Vaarden, archwizard of the Pathfinder Society,” droned the elf, a lofty title Sanguinaxia was certain he had not earned. He spoke draconic, haughty and arrogant as though he considered himself a master of the tongue, although the accent--a subtle inflection imperceptible to non-dragons--implied it was the kobold variant. “I am responding to your summons.”
“You are late,” snarled the dragon, raising herself up to her full forty feet of height, towering over the two lessers who dared to defile her noble tongue with their butchery of her language. “I instructed you not to tarry.”
“These matters take time,” responded Vaarden, “a willing subject had to be located. The procedure is so unusual.”
“What do I pay you for, if not results?” Sanguinaxia snapped her head forward, baring her large, yellowed teeth, her rage barely kept in check as her catlike eyes studied the grey haired, trembling gnome who cowered by Vaarden’s side. “This is what you bring me? The gnome is sickly. Frail. Weak. He cannot be a bond for my son.”
“He was the only one who was willing.”
The dragoness’s heart clenched with anger, her blood pressure rising. Thick, ominous clouds pumped out of her nostrils and she inhaled, causing the elf’s long hair to billow towards her open maw. “What care have I if it is willing? My son’s life hangs in the balance, the wants and desires of fleshings are of no concern to me.”
“The spell requires the subject not resist,” said Vaarden, “and no amount of magic can compel them to complete the bond. Besides, this one is perfect.” A faint sneer crossed his elven features. “He seeks to escape the bleaching, believing the bond will sustain his mortal shell even as his passion for life crumbles around him.”
“The feyling wishes to drain my son’s life energy?” Sanguinaxia clenched her sharp teeth. “You thought I would agree to this?”
Vaarden held up both his hands. “It is not a parasitic entanglement, but a mutually beneficial one. Your son’s spirit is healthy but his body is broken. Sivian’s body is unmarked but his spirit fades. Together they can sustain each other.”
“Can they, now.” Sanguinaxia turned her terrible gaze upon the pale skinned gnome, who visibly retreated under her stern gaze. “Tell me, fleshling, how can you serve me?”
“Y-Your magnificence,” the gnome stuttered, “I have lived nearly two hundred years. I have wandered the world. I have seen all I fear I can see with these eyes, but those eyes dim. My hair whitens. My body aches. I feel Phrasma’s cold, uncaring breath on the nape of my neck, and I fear her judgement. If your son were to become my eidolon, I would escape that terrible fate.”
Sanguinaxia snorted derisively, twin smoke rings floating out of her nostrils and washing over the two humanoids. “Pharsma’s judgement is not so easily spurned. You are a fool if you believe whatever inept, bumbling, mortal magic this elf has offered you can outwit Death herself.”
Vaarden’s expression of offence was priceless to her but Sivian remained resolute.
“I can but try, mighty dragon. I have few options left.”
Sanguinaxia narrowed her eyes at the feyling, but a faint groan from her dying son washed away her hesitation. “Very well,” she intoned, wrinkling her nose and slowly stepping aside, “proceed with the binding.”
Vaarden stepped forward, unhooking a small pouch of reagents from his belt, but Sanguinaxia raised a colossal claw and pressed it to his chest. “Fail,” she warned, her tone as icy as her breath was hot, “and tales of your suffering shall be used to frighten Pathfinder Society recruits for a thousand years.”
Vaarden nodded his acceptance and Sanguinaxia slid back to give him room, her eyes never leaving the broken, bleeding form of her only surviving hatchling.
Chris Nichols wrote:
Just a friendly reminder that there are at least two remaining item critique requests pending - walking stick of the revered elder and meridian needles.
And the Facsimile Stone! :D Been checking this thread like mad to get my feedback. :)
Probably been spotted, but... page 15, prehensile tail.
Prehensile Tail (2 RP): Prerequisites: None; Benefit :
At Paizocon Oz, I prepared a bunch of "Letters from Home" for my Qadiran paladin Zaheeda, which I read at the rate of one per module at an appropriate time... with the dramatic climax read at the special at the last day.
I was afraid of slowing down the group, but our table was running way ahead since we were low level, so this was actually a great way to keep the group entertained since the last letter was also the longest.
They're available here.
Additionally, I prepared a bunch of "prayers" for throwing out when Zaheeda gets attacked or encounters a specific situation. They are:
"A Paladin's armour is faith." - offered when an incoming attack misses.
"A Paladin's nature is charity."
Edit: Fixed the link! Doh!
Heya all, first time poster. Apologies if I have this in the wrong section, but I'm soliciting comment and feedback on my wondrous item submission (as seen below).
Necklace of Eased Birth:
"Necklace of Eased Birth"
Aura slight necromancy; CL 3th
This teardrop shaped, polished red Carnelian stone is threaded through a simple chain of thin interlocking links and is intended to be worn around the neck. Amongst the various Halfling families, trinkets like these are treated as heirlooms and are used to ease the risk and pain of childbirth. When worn, the bracelet reduces any bleed damage taken by 1 point (except ability damage) and grants a +2 enhancement bonus on rolls to stabilize.
I wanted to create a simple, practical item that would hopefully be something that we'd see in low-level characters inventories. It was intended to be an item that was from the "common" world; something that a minor noble or wealthy merchant may use, but which if re-purposed would have an obvious benefit to adventurers just beginning their careers.
Thoughts? Suggestions? Comments?