Paladin advice and options


Advice


Okay.
Paladin had captured a goblin and had him manacled. Goblin was spilling the beans and the Paladin was going to take him back to town for trial/justice. The goblin was knocked unconcious and healed back to health for a chat by the party.
The Summoner then sent his Eidolon to kill the goblin to which the Paladin tried to grapple the Eidolon to prevent the death of the goblin but failed. When asked why he did it the Summoner said IC "because he insulted me by entangling me and making me roll around the ground"

Paladin is miffed.

Paladin options are....?


Goblin stew?

Hmm, I would warn the summoner that this is basically the path to becoming evil. And that you will have to keep a close eye on him. But also warn him that if he continues down that path, you will have to become violent at some point...


Spacelard wrote:
Paladin options are...

... too numerous to list them all.

Really.

In my games, paladins are more than justtified to dispense "field justice" to those they rightfully deem to be irredeemably evil. Like goblins. So I wouldn't expect the paladin to stop the eidolon in the first place, nor would I punish the paladin for gorking the goblin himself. If they're rightfully wrong, then their deity will suitably punish them for their imprudence.

But, some DMs insist on making a paladin's life as awful as they can.

For those DMs, there is already a problem with this party.

If the paladin is required to protect the weak, and other PCs are willing to gork an enemy for what boils down to doing its best to survive, then they will never see eye to eye and the paladin should leave now and find a more amenable group.

Heck, depending on the laws prevalent in this land, the summoner might have acted illegally. For example, if this land is a lawful kingdom ruled by a paladin king, it might just be illegal to gork any prisonor. In which case, the summoner broke the law, and maybe this paladin is required to drag the summoner back to town for trial. Or maybe a little field justice on the lawless summoner is within his rights as a duly sworn paladin. Maybe even required...

I think the simplest way to handle this stuff is to play the "paladin code" so that it only applies to the paladin. "Well, duh!" you say, because that's so obvious...

But, take that obvious statement to the extreme that the paladin might break his code to gork the goblin, but the paladin realizes that the summoner is under no such obligation. As long as the summoner is not breaking laws of the land then the paladin code does not require the paladin to enforce that code on the summoner's behavior. Essentially, the paladin stays out of it, which is only a violation of the paladin code if we assume the goblin is innocent.

But, the goblin tried to kill the paladin and the summoner, so the paladin can comfortably pass judgment on the goblin, deem it evil and certainly not innocent. Meaning the paladin is under no obligation to defend the goblin or to punish the summoner.

So, for me, I recommend the "obvious" path and don't force the paladin (or his player) to ram his code down everyone's throat. The paladin character already believes he has a special code that sets him apart from everyone else, which means by default, everyone else doesn't have the same code. It would be wrong of the paladin to force everyone to live by his own code.

Now, when that summoner starts killing Farmer Jack for planting corn in a wheat field, well, then the paladin needs to step in.

The Exchange

This depends on your Paladin's outlook, and the understanding that exists between the players and DM in terms of the Paladin's path to virtue.

The Paladin did not dispense 'field justice'...why? Either he/she saw the goblin was redeemable or that vigilante justice is against the law.

If it was that the goblin was redeemable then he/she should refuse to work with the summoner.

If it was that vigilante justice is against the law then he/she should make a citizens arrest of the summoner for murder.

Either way, the player of the summoner was being completely unhelpful in working against the aims of the party. Disruptive = bad player.

We have a cleric in our campaign at the moment who has us avoid combat whenever possible, up holds the fair treatment of prisoners and seeks to redeem those who are acting to achieve evil ends. Having a character like that in the party is a challenge. It would be impossible if we weren't all on board.


Spacelard wrote:

Okay.

Paladin had captured a goblin and had him manacled. Goblin was spilling the beans and the Paladin was going to take him back to town for trial/justice. The goblin was knocked unconcious and healed back to health for a chat by the party.
The Summoner then sent his Eidolon to kill the goblin to which the Paladin tried to grapple the Eidolon to prevent the death of the goblin but failed. When asked why he did it the Summoner said IC "because he insulted me by entangling me and making me roll around the ground"

Paladin is miffed.

Paladin options are....?

Personally I like to give paladin's some authority to dispense justice outside of town, goblins aren't usually regarded as citizens of any kind so it is unlikely a trial will even be given. If the goblin tried to kill them I think the paladin tries to take his justice too far, the goblin is obviously guilty and will be killed regardless.

On the other hand, the summoner's actions are just petty and spiteful, judging from his response not so much his actions it also is very disrespectful towards the paladin and possibly the paladin's player.
The paladin is trying to roleplay, persisting in disrespectful / evil actions will break this party up eventually, no decent paladin can abide evil actions in his presence for long and surely won't seek out such company if given any choice.

I think the paladin is quite justified to punch him in the face, make sure the summoner gets that the paladin won't stand for such actions and might seek out more honorable companions. As a GM you might want to make sure the party remains on good terms,so you might want to mediate.

I assume the summoner being neutral or chaotic neutral, if not it is just poor roleplay.. you can expect players to adjust to their party members within reason, while stepping outside your alignments actions can be done on occasion, stepping outside and so doing stirring up trouble with other players shouldn't be done.


The Paladin player views the action as an insult to his personal honor. The captive was in his care so to speak and under his protection. The fact that the goblin was evil or attacked the party to the player is irrelevent (to him) its the fact that the Summoner killed an unarmed, restrained prisoner in his care.


Spacelard wrote:

Okay.

Paladin had captured a goblin and had him manacled. Goblin was spilling the beans and the Paladin was going to take him back to town for trial/justice. The goblin was knocked unconcious and healed back to health for a chat by the party.
The Summoner then sent his Eidolon to kill the goblin to which the Paladin tried to grapple the Eidolon to prevent the death of the goblin but failed. When asked why he did it the Summoner said IC "because he insulted me by entangling me and making me roll around the ground"

Paladin is miffed.

Paladin options are....?

Kill the summoner ont the spot!

1 The Paladin who captured the prisoner for a trial made it his task to protect it.
2 Killing a helpless being is at least doubfull in this case especially the summoner killed for irritation/insult.
3 The summoner defied everything you stand for at that moment and disrespected your autority!

You repetation is something you should protect! A prisoner held by you is murderd by one of your partymenbers!

Silver Crusade

This sort of situation is usually a player issue, not a character issue. Some players really have a problem with paladins, and will go out of their way to frustrate players of paladins. Would this same player have killed the goblin if you were a mercenary trying to get the higher bounty for live capture upon return to town? Take it out of character, quickly. Find out if the player is just paladin hating, and if he will shape up with some friendly real world conversation. Find out your DM's opinion of the situation. If the summoner won't back off, and the DM supports him, one you may need to swap out for a new character. The group might want to play a rougher style that doesn't support a paladin. Nether one of you should let this turn into a petty bickering match that distracts from the rest of the game.


This isn't a paladin problem; it's a player problem. If the scenario was that a fighter captured the goblin and was going to take it back to town for a trial, then it is the same scenario. If the players want to mess with one another, and let's face it, the summoner is killing a prisoner that the paladin player has indicated will be taken back to town, then code doesn't really matter. Any person who is making the effort to capture and transport a prisoner is going to be annoyed when another person comes along and kills the prisoner for no good reason.

Now, when you consider options for the paladin, you need to divide the options into those that will end party unity (such as an attack on the summoner) and those that will enable the party to continue on (such as "getting something straight" with the summoner).


Yeah. Player problem, not character problem...rather, these sorts of things *might* happen if there were divinely powered paladins and arcane summoners in the real world but there is *no need* for them to happen in the game world.

In the real world the paladin should punch the summoner in the face or challenge him to a duel or something and then leave the summoner's party...or kick the summoner out of *his* party, assuming he can win the others over to his side. Try going to 1600s Japan and killing some samurai's prisoner...if you don't like your head attached to your shoulders, that is.

In the game world the summoner's player really should try to refrain from being an asshat. Sounds like there was a very good reason to take the goblin prisoner and, once that was done, the goblin came under the direct protection of the paladin (to be dealt with however best fits within that paladin's code). The summoner should have kept the eidolon in his pants and his *player* should have, at the very least, told the paladin's player his intentions and discussed possible outcomes.
M


agreed with above posts, though there might be a good rp reason and I can't really tell wether the paladin's player is annoyed or just the paladin as RP'ed by the player.

Personally I do not usually allow evil party members, I always want to keep options open for players that want to play heroes like paladins.

Paladins have a tendency to keep the party on the heroic track and I seen often enough there is one or two players (not usually bad players) that want to play a different kind of character / game causing conflict.


Everything has been done IC and I'm just see other people's opinions on the matter. I certainly have my opinion on the matter but the Paladin player has asked for various options.
The sticking points are
The goblin killed was actually cooperating at the time.
He promised to lead the rest of the tribe away if the PCs killed the chief (internal strife). As far as the party was concerned he was telling the truth.
He was in fact innocent in regards to the original troubles which caused the PCs to go after the tribe. He protested this innocence and again as far as the PCs go he was telling the truth.


In that case it seems an evil act to kill the goblin at that point, which gives the paladin every right to be furious. Casual murder is not something the paladin will put up with lightly in my opinion, as a DM I'd keep tabs on the alignment of the summoner.. and so would the paladin.


Given the full facts, I'd say the paladin would consider this unacceptable behavior, and depending on his flavor either a) leave the party to prepare to defend nearby villages from the goblin armies, b) kick the summoner out of his party, c) challenge summoner to trial by combat, d) or agree to work with the party only until the current goblin threat is vanquished as that evil takes priority and then resolve the issue with the summoner.


Subdue and restrain the summoner, and have him face trials for murdering a prisoner under a paladin's charge, if in a non-evil/non-chaotic country.

If a summoner thinks he can get away with killing someone over an insult, then the paladin certainly should "get away with" dragging someone who just spat on his code to court. Sure, most judges would go "You are accusing him for the unlawful murder of a... GOBLIN?!" and dismiss the case, but the summoner would know not to do it again, if for no other reason than to not suffer this indignity again.

Or, you could go the bad-ass route, draw your sword and stop the blow a hairs-width from the summoner's throat. "YOU just insulted me by spitting on my code and honor, making me an accomplice of a murder committed right in front of my eyes! Contemplate your actions, and thank the goodly gods that require me to stay my blade."

No rule says that a paladin can't use intimidation. If the summoner is evil, the confrontation was bound to happen anyway.


Kamelguru wrote:

Or, you could go the bad-ass route, draw your sword and stop the blow a hairs-width from the summoner's throat. "YOU just insulted me by spitting on my code and honor, making me an accomplice of a murder committed right in front of my eyes! Contemplate your actions, and thank the goodly gods that require me to stay my blade."

No rule says that a paladin can't use intimidation. If the summoner is evil, the confrontation was bound to happen anyway.

Now that's a paladin!


Spacelard wrote:

Everything has been done IC and I'm just see other people's opinions on the matter. I certainly have my opinion on the matter but the Paladin player has asked for various options.

The sticking points are
The goblin killed was actually cooperating at the time.
He promised to lead the rest of the tribe away if the PCs killed the chief (internal strife). As far as the party was concerned he was telling the truth.
He was in fact innocent in regards to the original troubles which caused the PCs to go after the tribe. He protested this innocence and again as far as the PCs go he was telling the truth.

I see a Paladin as a force for good before a force for law, and in this sense also a redeemer. So it all depends if the Summoner has gone beyond the point of no return (i.e.: has switched to an Evil alignment).

Paladin: <Summoner name>, thou hast committed a deed most foul. Slaying a living, breathing, thinking, feeling creature while it was bound and helpless. Art thou so cowardly that thou could not bear to face a single goblin in honorable combat?

Paladin: I ask guidance of my god now. Are thou yet capable of being redeemed, or has thy soul passed to the point of judgment? :Use Detect Evil:

IF NOT "Evil" THEN:

Fortune smiles upon thee this day. Thou hast incurred my wrath, but I will spare thy life. Thou might yet be redeemed. Consider carefully thy actions, for they alone will determine thy ultimate fate.

IF "Evil" THEN:

Thy evil deed hast brought thee to the point of judgment. Arm thyself, for thy doom is at now at hand. :Roll Initiative: :Smite Evil: :Kill Summoner:

-----

As a player, I would explain my planned course of action to the GM before the decision was made as to the result of Detect Evil. If the Summoner's player wants to plead his case that he doesn't want to have an Evil character, maybe the GM will show leniency.

Otherwise, it's time to get out a character sheet, because somebody is going to need one.


Spacelard wrote:

Everything has been done IC and I'm just see other people's opinions on the matter. I certainly have my opinion on the matter but the Paladin player has asked for various options.

The sticking points are
The goblin killed was actually cooperating at the time.
He promised to lead the rest of the tribe away if the PCs killed the chief (internal strife). As far as the party was concerned he was telling the truth.
He was in fact innocent in regards to the original troubles which caused the PCs to go after the tribe. He protested this innocence and again as far as the PCs go he was telling the truth.

Headbutt the summoner.

The man is a treacherous coward, one who has not only murdered a helpless being in cold blood, but has also endangered the lives of many other goblins and all of the settlers whose conflict could likely be ended by dealing with this chief.

The summoner is a dangerous loose cannon, who placed his own petty vengeance before the welfare of others, before the life of a being who had dealt with you truthfully.

The man murdered someone under the paladin's protection.

And what of the others in this party? Have they nothing to say? Will they stand aside and allow this outrage? Have they no qualms with travelling with such a man?

Silver Crusade

Smells like player issues. Some people cannot play nice with others.

Seriously, what about the other players at the table?

Dark Archive

I quite agree with another mage. Also, make sure it is not a player issue.

If not, Well the summoner might have had troubles against goblins and that doesn't necessarly make him evil.

Summoner cheated on paladin but he may be redeemed.

The Paladin is now watching him. In the future shall the summoner perform other Chaotic Evil acts, the paladin can judge him "on the spot" or bring him to court.

after all, they are working for a greater good no ?


OoCly talk to the other player, discuss that your two characters will not play along well and that it could easily make the entire game not fun for both of you and potentially the entire group.

People give paladins crap about needing to be the group "policeman," but I honestly think characters that are just jerks are even worse at causing inner-party strife. Drama between characters can be fun and cool and awesome. Drama between players because the game stops being fun is the opposite of all of those.


Pathfinder Adventure Path, Starfinder Adventure Path Subscriber

Yeah, I'd like to hear about the OOC reasoning, too. Sounds like a player issue.


Concur that it is a player issue, and the summoner as the problem, not the paladin.

If I was to ignore the OOC issues, were I the paladin (depending on the kind, sure) I'd arrest the summoner (if I could) and drag him to the town that was about to be saved by cooperation from the goblin that was in custody. I would lay out before the local authorities what the summoner may have cost them and then leave it in their hands, provided they had a system of justice, enforcement and so forth. If they didn't I would convene a panel, or jury, or local dignitaries, whatever, and have a trial of some kind.

I wouldn't attempt to try the summoner for murder. It was a goblin. Who would convict on that?:) I'd stick with the danger to the community you'd worked out a deal to avert, etc.

Regardless of the outcome of that, there is also the point of honor with someone else killing your prisoner, but to each his own.

Back to reality, though, I'd guess that you have more of a player problem, and any of the above would only exacerbate that.


To All: Thank you for your input, it has helped the player of the Paladin no end. As there are more than one way to skin a cat so to speak it was helpful to have more than one head in this.

The Paladin has the backing of the rest of the party, in fact the rogue offered to slit the Summoner's throat which the Paladin pointed out wasn't nescessary... The Paladin has decided to wait until the scenario has finished before kicking the Summoner out or bawling at him. Mean while he has made it quite clear if anything like it happens again the Summoner will be taking a dirt-nap.

The Paladin has decided to give the Summoner a chance, repent and apologise with a bit of community service for endangering the community with his rash behaviour. He will be allowed back into the fold forgiven but on probation. Or he can leave.

OOC the Summoner player realises that he was a d!ck...

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