Clerics, Shields and Somatic components


Rules Questions


I've just bought PF (and never played D&D before) and I've one question about Clerics: Can they cast spells with somatic component while using a One-Handed melee weapon and a shield?

Chapter 9 (Magic) reads:
Somatic (S): A somatic component is a measured and precise movement of the hand. You must have at least one hand free to provide a somatic component.

So I think they can't, but I'm not sure as they are a caster class with shield proficiency.


A buckler or light shield should be O.K.; they both say that you can hold something in the shield hand. Heavy shields, no.


hogarth wrote:
A buckler or light shield should be O.K.; they both say that you can hold something in the shield hand. Heavy shields, no.

Somatic asks for a "free hand" (ir order to do precise movements), and light shield description reads:

Shield, Light; Wooden or Steel: You strap a shield to your forearm and grip it with your hand. A light shield’s weight lets you carry other items in that hand, although you cannot use weapons with it.

So you have a free hand... but not free enough to use a weapon. Is it free enough to cast?

Sovereign Court

Yep! Light shields let you get your hands free for the moment you need to cast those spells. Need to move your arm and wiggle your fingers, so your good.


Morgen wrote:
Yep! Light shields let you get your hands free for the moment you need to cast those spells. Need to move your arm and wiggle your fingers, so your good.

I've never really thought too much about clerics casting spells. Just assumed they can go at it with weapon in hand and a large shield. So if a cleric needs to cast a spell with a focus (touch his holy symbol) does that mean he can only be using a light shield and doesn't get the AC bonus for the shield until his next turn because that arm is preoccupied?


Pathfinder Maps Subscriber
Mylon wrote:
So if a cleric needs to cast a spell with a focus (touch his holy symbol) does that mean he can only be using a light shield and doesn't get the AC bonus for the shield until his next turn because that arm is preoccupied?

If he's using a light shield and casting a standard action spell, he can still get his AC bonus because as part of his move action he can ready his shield (assuming he has a BAB of +1 or higher) per note 3 on page 183.

Assuming the cleric already has his holy symbol in hand (page 152 states you can carry other items in your shield hand), he could release the handgrip of the shield as a free action (his arm remains in the strap since he didn't use a move action to completely remove the shield), cast his verbal/somatic/focus(holy symbol) spell as a standard action, and as part of his remaining move action (in wich he can actualy move or not as he sees fit) regrip (ready) his shield (and still hold onto his holy symbol). If he doesn't use his move action to move any distance (but still used it to re-equip the shield) he can five-foot step somewhere in that turn as well.


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Adventure Path Charter Subscriber
PRD wrote:

Shield, Light; Wooden or Steel: You strap a shield to your forearm and grip it with your hand. A light shield's weight lets you carry other items in that hand, although you cannot use weapons with it."

Notice no rules for casting a spell.

PRD wrote:

Buckler: This small metal shield is worn strapped to your forearm. You can use a bow or crossbow without penalty while carrying it. You can also use your shield arm to wield a weapon (whether you are using an off-hand weapon or using your off hand to help wield a two-handed weapon), but you take a –1 penalty on attack rolls while doing so. This penalty stacks with those that may apply for fighting with your off hand and for fighting with two weapons. In any case, if you use a weapon in your off hand, you lose the buckler's AC bonus until your next turn. You can cast a spell with somatic components using your shield arm, but you lose the buckler's AC bonus until your next turn. You can't make a shield bash with a buckler.

You will notice that their are rules for casting with a buckler.

SlimGauge wrote:


If he's using a light shield and casting a standard action spell, he can still get his AC bonus because as part of his move action he can ready his shield (assuming he has a BAB of +1 or higher) per note 3 on page 183.

You can't cast a spell with the same hand that is wielding a light or heavy shield. This can only be done with a buckler and PFRPG specifically says you lose the AC bonus for a round. So I really doubt that the bigger light shield would allow you to get away with what the buckler can't do.

Now what is not clear is the exact type of action it is to move your weapon from your main hand to your light shield hand. Many people want it to be free in which case you can move your weapon to your light shield hand cast your spell and move the weapon back. On page 11 of the 3.5 FAQ it is said for this exact situation that its a move action to move your weapon to a different hand. In which case you can cast your spell, but would not have a melee weapon in your main hand until next round at the cost of two move-actions.

3.5 D&D FAQ 6/30/09 page 11 wrote:

Q: My DM says that my cleric has to drop his morningstar to cast spells. Is he right?

A: Yes and no. To cast a spell with a somatic (S) component, you must gesture freely with at least one hand. (PH 140) A cleric (or any caster, for that matter) who holds a weapon in one hand and wears a heavy shield on the other arm doesn’t have a hand free to cast a spell with a somatic component (which includes most spells in the game). To cast such a spell, the character must either drop or sheathe his weapon.

Another simple option is for the cleric to carry a buckler or light shield instead of a heavy shield. The buckler leaves one hand free for spellcasting, and you don’t even lose the buckler’s shield bonus to AC when casting with that hand. The light shield doesn’t give you a free hand for spellcasting, but since you can hold an item in the same hand that holds the light shield, you could switch your weapon to that hand to free up a hand for spellcasting. (You can’t use the weapon while it’s held in the same hand as your shield, of course.) The rules don’t state what type of action is required to switch hands on a weapon, but it seems reasonable to assume that it’s the equivalent of drawing a weapon (a move action that doesn’t provoke attacks of opportunity).


3.5 D&D FAQ 6/30/09 page 11 wrote:


Q: My DM says that my cleric has to drop his morningstar to cast spells. Is he right?
A: Yes and no. To cast a spell with a somatic (S) component, you must gesture freely with at least one hand. (PH 140) A cleric (or any caster, for that matter) who holds a weapon in one hand and wears a heavy shield on the other arm doesn’t have a hand free to cast a spell with a somatic component (which includes most spells in the game). To cast such a spell, the character must either drop or sheathe his weapon.

Another simple option is for the cleric to carry a buckler or light shield instead of a heavy shield. The buckler leaves one hand free for spellcasting, and you don’t even lose the buckler’s shield bonus to when casting with that hand. The light shield doesn’t give you a free hand for spellcasting, but since you can hold an item in the same hand that holds the light shield, you could switch your weapon to that hand to free up a hand for spellcasting. (You can’t use the weapon while it’s held in the same hand as your shield, of course.) The rules don’t state what type of action is required to switch hands on a weapon, but it seems reasonable to assume that it’s the equivalent of drawing a weapon (a move action that doesn’t provoke attacks of opportunity).

I'd be fine with that ruling in general, but in my opinion switching hands on a weapon should be a free action.

That cleric is screwed enough drawing an AoO(for the spell) and not threatening his adjacent spaces while casting.

Maybe I'm stretching the situation, but by comparison, a wizard wielding a quarterstaff (two handed weapon) would not be able to cast spells and take a move since he has no free hands and must use his move equivalent action it to pick the damned quarterstaff with one hand (draw weapon equivalent) and also getting a nice -4 non proficiency penalty to all his attacks(touch spells included) for wielding a two handed weapon in one hand.

Shadow Lodge

Ya, even amongst hardcore rules lawyers, I have never played with a group that used that rule.


Beckett wrote:
Ya, even amongst hardcore rules lawyers, I have never played with a group that used that rule.

Yeah, I bet no one does. Maybe I did too much of a stretch on the rule trying to make a point.


nidho wrote:
Beckett wrote:
Ya, even amongst hardcore rules lawyers, I have never played with a group that used that rule.

Yeah, I bet no one does. Maybe I did too much of a stretch on the rule trying to make a point.

Well, all my groups use that rule. And it's a good, rule, basically another way to limit the almighty CoDzilla (in this case, Cozilla).

"Want to cast a spell ? Fine , what shield are you using ? Where is your weapon ? Your Holy Symbol ? What, you have THREE hands or what ?"

Most of the Clerics in my groups use only Bucklers or Light Shields if they want to cast continuously. 'Battle' Clerics are another thing, they wear Heavy Shields but they are not able to cast every round without messing with their equipment...
"Free action, drop my Heavy Mace, free action, hold my Holy Symbol, can I cast with that in hand*? Can I ? Ok, so I cast Flame Strike. Move Action to take my Mace - aargh, AoO !!!"

*You can check the essay on casting spells in such a way on the 'Rules of the Game' page on the WotC webpage here.

Spoiler:

"Your hand is free when you aren't carrying a weapon, a piece of equipment, or (usually) a shield. You can strap a buckler to your arm and use your hand to wield a weapon (albeit at a penalty), so there's no reason you couldn't use your buckler hand for a somatic component. The buckler might interfere a little bit, but that's what the arcane spell failure chance for the buckler is for. You also can strap a light shield to your forearm and still carry items in that hand, but you can't use the hand for anything else (such as wielding a weapon), so there's no good reason you should be able to use that hand to complete a somatic component. Since manipulating a material component (including a focus) is part of casting the spell, it's best to consider the hand that holds the material component or focus as "free" for purposes of completing a somatic component."


According to the 3.5 FAQ, you can cast spells while using a light shield, but it's *awkward*. You can't use the hand for somatic components, but you can "pass" your weapon from one hand to the light shield hand (as a *MOVE* action), then cast the spell. I suppose to switch hands with the weapon again will cost another (ridiculous) move action.

Therefore, the only way to cast spells without silliness and having a morningstar + shield is with a buckler. You could probably work with a heavy shield + spiked gauntlet and cast spells with the spiked gauntlet hand -- but at 1d4/2x, it's worse than a dagger in terms of damage.

The light shield is only really good for two-weapon fighting. Otherwise, it's pretty much crap.


The Wraith wrote:
nidho wrote:
Beckett wrote:
Ya, even amongst hardcore rules lawyers, I have never played with a group that used that rule.

Yeah, I bet no one does. Maybe I did too much of a stretch on the rule trying to make a point.

Well, all my groups use that rule. And it's a good, rule, basically another way to limit the almighty CoDzilla (in this case, Cozilla).

I think the rule that Beckett refers to is the one I made up about wizards and quarterstaves...

Shadow Lodge

Nah, I was talking about Clerics (and Druids and Paladins) not being able to cast with a Heavy Shield. More specifically when they have to move to a threatened area to heal someone imediately. Or something like that that had to be done right then. But we have also never had a problem with Clerics being overpowered.


Beckett wrote:
Nah, I was talking about Clerics (and Druids and Paladins) not being able to cast with a Heavy Shield. More specifically when they have to move to a threatened area to heal someone imediately. Or something like that that had to be done right then. But we have also never had a problem with Clerics being overpowered.

Uh, ok, I've said nothing then.

Scarab Sages

meabolex wrote:
According to the 3.5 FAQ, you can cast spells while using a light shield, but it's *awkward*. You can't use the hand for somatic components, but you can "pass" your weapon from one hand to the light shield hand (as a *MOVE* action), then cast the spell. I suppose to switch hands with the weapon again will cost another (ridiculous) move action.

We should consider "pass" your weapon from one hand to the light shield and switch hands with the weapon again as 'not an action' (or maybe a swift action) using about the same amount of time as notching an arrow (see not an action description in the combat section of the rule book).

Switching from holding a weapon with two hands to holding a weapon with only one hand would fall into the 'not an action' category too.

Consequence: you are not threatening with these wepons the round you cast a spell.

Think this ruling corresponds well to the way we are already playing anyways...

Scarab Sages RPG Superstar 2013

Clerics can easily be overpowered. If not in Pathfinder now, certainly in a game that welcomes older 3.5 material they can be very hard to challenge at high levels. They can change the game tactically, they are excellent buffers for the whole party, not just themselves. In the expanded game, they have their turning ability as a great resource to augment their spellcasting or combat abilities. They are highly armored and can compete with any class for damage output if built cleverly.

Limiting spellcasting because of shield use makes sense to me. The class has to have some sense of compromise.

And don't let those heathen players talk you into mitigating that tradeoff with an animated shield. Those are plenty awesome, and I always rules they can be readied during a move like a weapon. But still not helpful for casting spells.


ESSEL wrote:
Think this ruling corresponds well to the way we are already playing anyways...

The 3.5 FAQ says it's a move action, and while it's ridiculous to think so, that's what it says. . . written by the "sage" himself. The 3.5 FAQ might as well come out and say, "you're crazy if you're using a light shield as a cleric" -- but it doesn't.

This same kind of problem plagues paladins too. They need a free hand for lay on hands, and while a light shield hand can hold things, it isn't considered a free hand. So paladins should almost universally use a buckler (except at first level, before they have lay on hands). The heavy shield on the iconic paladin has always irked me. No paladin would choose to drop/sheathe their weapon to use lay on hands. Even the buckler is kinda blah -- using lay on hands with a buckler causes you to lose the AC bonus from the buckler for a round.

So, as long as the 3.5 FAQ ruling holds:

  • Bucklers are standard equipment on clerics and paladins.
  • Light shields are used for sword/bash TWF fighters and rangers.
  • Heavy shields are for clerics/paladins that use the crappy spiked gauntlet or armor spikes.


Well, just to share....

I play a level 2 melee battle cleric in PFS...and I suffer the 1 AC hit of using a buckler instead of a large shield, specifically so I have the option of using that hand (and losing the AC), if I need to cast. Still, I spend quite a few rounds with nothing in my other hand so I can keep that AC...I do a lot of sheathing, redrawing, switching, and other oddball stuff....

Personally, I find that aspect of playing the character fun. It adds the need for a lot more thought and planning to deal with the limitations of needing that free hand. As for game balance....I think it's perfectly balanced to say you can't cast when gussied up like a line combatant. If you're a primary caster and want your AC, just don't have a melee weapon out. If you're a primary melee combatant and want the option of casting, suffer the 1 AC hit and use a buckler....so in an emergency you don't have to drop something to free up your hand.

Scarab Sages

meabolex wrote:


The 3.5 FAQ says it's a move action, and while it's ridiculous to think so, that's what it says. . . written by the "sage" himself. The 3.5 FAQ might as well come out and say, "you're crazy if you're using a light shield as a cleric" -- but it doesn't.

So, as long as the 3.5 FAQ ruling holds:

But does the 3.5 FAQ still holds?? We are playing with the Pathfinder rules now!

That rule issue was one of the reasons my own cleric choosed a two-handed weapon! I'm fine now....8)


Bastard swords, bucklers, holy symbols, spell components, free hands, oh my!

I have mixed feelings about strictly enforcing the draw/sheath free hand rules, but in the end, I think it makes the game a little more balanced, and slows things down - in a good way. I have spent a few sessions recently playing GURPS, and found the one second combat round to be pretty cool, once you get used to spending half your turns readying. As long as it is enforced across the board (wands must be drawn just as a weapon.)

I have seen that Quick Draw can be a really nice and useful feat! Some may disagree, but I found that there are not that many good feat choices for a cleric by mid level, so why not quick draw...


Pathfinder Companion Subscriber

Just something I chose to allow was for a shield (any type) to be holy-symboled for 100g.p.
It kind of made more sense to me that a shield showing a huge holy symbol could be used as a holy symbol but should cost a bit. Other material needed for divine spells still have to be handle regulary.


meabolex wrote:
  • Bucklers are standard equipment on clerics and paladins.
  • Light shields are used for sword/bash TWF fighters and rangers.
  • Heavy shields are for clerics/paladins that use the crappy spiked gauntlet or armor spikes.
  • I think that pretty much sums it up. And I don't think it's overly harsh on the paladins and clerics to use the rules that way...

    Zairos.


    meabolex wrote:
    According to the 3.5 FAQ, you can cast spells while using a light shield, but it's *awkward*. You can't use the hand for somatic components, but you can "pass" your weapon from one hand to the light shield hand (as a *MOVE* action), then cast the spell. I suppose to switch hands with the weapon again will cost another (ridiculous) move action.

    Maybe I'm missing something, but how is that different from sheathing(move equivalent) the weapon? And if so why not use the heavy shield already?

    The Exchange Owner - D20 Hobbies

    hogarth wrote:
    A buckler or light shield should be O.K.; they both say that you can hold something in the shield hand. Heavy shields, no.

    +1 (Requires weapons swap to the Light Shield hand, casting, then swap weapon back)

    Liberty's Edge

    We just use the "I hold it under my arm" rule. Even for heavy shields.

    Keeps us from having to do too much book-keeping too.

    The Exchange

    In my games I require the cleric to have a free hand, either by using a buckler or using a light shield and passing his weapon to the shield hand or by not having a weapon in hand if he's using a heavy shield. Although I do house rule that it's a free action to pass the weapon to the shield hand. I don't think it breaks anything, although I did have one silly player who tried using two heavy shields and then was a bit confused when I asked him how he planned on casting the spell he was trying to cast. Ah well, some players will try anything.


    I appreciate all the thoughts on this post and other similar ones. I'm about to play my first PFS cleric. Please tell me if I have this right, assuming I am holding a one-handed weapon and using a buckler on the other arm:

    --Channel Energy: Present DF with the buckler hand, lose buckler AC bonus until the beginning of my next turn.

    --Cast spell with somatic component: cast with buckler hand, lose buckler AC bonus until the beginning of my next turn.

    Casting a standard-action spell with a DF component has drawing the DF as part of the standard action. Should I assume the same with Channel Energy, or, assuming I cast a non-DF spell in the previous round (or used one of the various Domain ranged touch attacks), would I need a move action to draw the holy symbol to Channel Energy?

    On another note I've seen relatively few weapon-and-shield melee clerics in the Selective Channeling era, at least in PFS play. If they don't take the Birthmark trait, perhaps Wis/Str clerics should just go the two-handed weapon route to avoid a lot of this trouble? Heavy shields do provide nice, cheap AC, though.

    Grand Lodge

    3.5 faq no longer holds in this respect as the devs have already said, quite clearly, that light sheild leaves the hands free for spell casting...and since there is no rules about them losing their AC like the buckler, it is the what you use as a cleric/paladin/gish. See the thing about 3.5...yeah you were SCREWED as a caster if you had a shield. So much so that after that stupid sage ruling, they made a feat to fix it (yeah I know, talk about stupid)...but the feat was actually a good thing as clerics and druids and paladins could now use large shields and rangers that were TWF could actually cast their spells. Unfortunately, said feat is not in PF.

    So that leaves us with 3 options.

    1) use the idiotic sage advice 3.5 ruling and pretty much wipe out large chunks of archetypes...and not even all that powerful ones at that.

    2) same as 1 but import somatic weaponry feat

    3) take the developer's word on light shields and let clerics/druids/paladins/gish use the light shield with no penalty so we don't have even MORE reason to have everyone be two handed fighters. Rangers however are still screwed.

    Grand Lodge

    JuZ wrote:

    I've just bought PF (and never played D&D before) and I've one question about Clerics: Can they cast spells with somatic component while using a One-Handed melee weapon and a shield?

    Chapter 9 (Magic) reads:
    Somatic (S): A somatic component is a measured and precise movement of the hand. You must have at least one hand free to provide a somatic component.

    So I think they can't, but I'm not sure as they are a caster class with shield proficiency.

    edit: Only with a buckler, as noted by others, but they can instead transfer a weapon to their off-hand and back as two free actions if they can hold the weapon in that hand. This works with a light shield, but not with a heavy shield.


    James Jacob's answer on the question

    Which is pathfinder specific.


    Pathfinder Maps, Pawns Subscriber; Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Superscriber; Starfinder Charter Superscriber

    Holy Symbols do not take up a hand.

    Pathfinder developers have already ruled that you can move an item from on hand to another (or change handedness) is a non-action.

    EDIT: Ninja'd!


    In my group we have the paladins and clerics use a light shield at most if they want to cast spells/lay on hands. (but still our cleric wants to use a heavy shield, so he drops his weapon every time he wants to cast). Also we allow two handed weapon users to cast spells/lay on hands normally. But yes the TWF ranger is pretty much screwed (good thing the ranger i play right now is a switch hitter).


    Adventure Path Charter Subscriber; Pathfinder Rulebook, Starfinder Adventure Path, Starfinder Roleplaying Game, Starfinder Society Subscriber
    leo1925 wrote:
    But yes the TWF ranger is pretty much screwed (good thing the ranger i play right now is a switch hitter).

    Not mine!

    Spoiler:
    Half-Orc Ranger 4
    16 Str (+2 race), 16 Dex (+1 advancement), 12 Con, 10 Int, 13 Wis, 8 Cha; 15-point buy
    Feats: Double Slice (Combat Style), Endurance, Power Attack, Two-Weapon Fighting
    Spells (CL 1): 1st-lead blades
    Weapon: Orc Double Axe

    Seriously, if you want to fight two-weapon style and cast spells, then use a double weapon (as above), light shield/weapon with Improved Shield Bash (so you can hold the weapon in your shield hand to cast), or a bunch of light weapons (preferrably ones that can also be thrown, like daggers or starknives; you'll get more use out of them, especially with Quick Draw, and you'll have spares for when you have to drop one to cast).


    1 hand free = no problem

    Sword and board = Bucker or Light shield = Hold your weapon with your shield hand (can not use as weapon), and cast spells with the free hand.

    2 Handed weapon = Hold the weapon in one hand (can not use as weapon this round), and cast spells with the free hand.

    .......

    The only problem is when you want to Fight with the Weapon AND cast, which should normal not be allowed.

    Shadow Lodge

    Guys, this is a thread from 2009...

    EDIT after reading the last posts: But you guys did a good job updating some nice info in it.

    Sovereign Court

    Pathfinder Pawns Subscriber

    light shield or buckler if you want to cast spells as a cleric, yeah: (switch weapon from main hand to shield hand, cast spell with main hand, switch back weapon to main hand - switching a weapon from one hand to another is a free action, and I've played under DMs that allowed people to hold a dagger in their teeth, and switch that to a hand or back to their teeth as a free action! LOL!)

    heavy shield and cast is a no-no, unless you allow the popular lanyard weapon cord house rule... :)


    Purple Dragon Knight wrote:
    heavy shield and cast is a no-no, unless you allow the popular lanyard weapon cord house rule... :)

    Unless you're a dagger wielding cleric?!

    Bada-bing!


    meabolex wrote:

    According to the 3.5 FAQ, you can cast spells while using a light shield, but it's *awkward*. You can't use the hand for somatic components, but you can "pass" your weapon from one hand to the light shield hand (as a *MOVE* action), then cast the spell. I suppose to switch hands with the weapon again will cost another (ridiculous) move action.

    Therefore, the only way to cast spells without silliness and having a morningstar + shield is with a buckler. You could probably work with a heavy shield + spiked gauntlet and cast spells with the spiked gauntlet hand -- but at 1d4/2x, it's worse than a dagger in terms of damage.

    The light shield is only really good for two-weapon fighting. Otherwise, it's pretty much crap.

    I would say this is feasable but in the same respect you are not trained to use your shield while holding a weapon at the same time, so you would lose the shield bonus to AC for 1 round as well.


    Huppolitan wrote:

    I appreciate all the thoughts on this post and other similar ones. I'm about to play my first PFS cleric. Please tell me if I have this right, assuming I am holding a one-handed weapon and using a buckler on the other arm:

    --Channel Energy: Present DF with the buckler hand, lose buckler AC bonus until the beginning of my next turn.

    --Cast spell with somatic component: cast with buckler hand, lose buckler AC bonus until the beginning of my next turn.

    As far as I know, you don't lose your buckler AC bonus just for holding something in your shield hand -- only when you attack with that hand.


    This is the same issue with a 2handed weapon.

    I assume it is a free action to drop or switch an item to your other hand, but a move action to re-equip/ready the weapon, which can be done in combination with a move or negated with the quickdraw feat.


    Or just get a santified shield or consecrated weapon (from the AA).


    TwoWolves wrote:


    Or just get a santified shield or consecrated weapon (from the AA).

    Those wouldn't help with somatic components, would they?


    Purple Dragon Knight wrote:
    heavy shield and cast is a no-no, unless you allow the popular lanyard weapon cord house rule... :)

    Or the Weapon Cord from Adventurer's Armory. (allows you to recover a dropped weapon as a swift action)

    Remco Sommeling wrote:
    This is the same issue with a 2handed weapon. I assume it is a free action to drop or switch an item to your other hand, but a move action to re-equip/ready the weapon, which can be done in combination with a move or negated with the quickdraw feat.

    Quoth the Jacobs: "if you're wielding a 2H weapon, you can let go of the weapon with one of your hands (free action). You're now only carrying the 2H weapon, not wielding it, but your free hand is now free to attack or help cast spells or whatever. And at the end of your turn if your free hand remains free you'd be able to return it to grip your 2H weapon so you can still threaten foes and take attacks of opportunity if you want."


    Grick wrote:

    Quoth the Jacobs: "if you're wielding a 2H weapon, you can let go of the weapon with one of your hands (free action). You're now only carrying the 2H weapon, not wielding it, but your free hand is now free to attack or help cast spells or whatever. And at the end of your turn if your free hand remains free you'd be able to return it to grip your 2H weapon so you can still threaten foes and take attacks of opportunity if you want."

    Indeed true. Just a free action.

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