Help with playing Rexus and his gender!


Hell's Rebels


Okay, first things first: I was SO happy to see that Rexus was a trans character! Like, I loved him before, but checking into his profile and finding that was like finding your Christmas presents early. I KNOW my players are going to love it, because 2 of them are FtM trans too, and at least one of them is playing a character who's specifically trans too (though he's not quite as far down the line as Rexus- moreso "just escaped slavery on a pirate ship, cut my hair off and got some new clothes, pit stop in this city for a while"), so finding out a MAJOR NPC like him is canonically transgender too was SUPER uplifting!

However, I need some advice with how to tackle the issue, since I'm still getting a feel for Rexus. Would he be the type to keep it to himself until he absolutely needs to come out of the closet to others, like the "missions to supplement his dwindling supplies" suggested in the Campaign Role section, or would he immediately spot the trans PC, and be like "whoa, me too buddy"? Somewhere in between? Would he confide in the trans PC in private after some trust has been earned? Etc, etc! Any other tips into making his character all the more perfect (because God, what a guy!) would be super appreciated!


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First, I think you're free to go whichever way seems best/more interesting to you. Rexus has a role in getting the pc's going in the AP but certainly after Book 1 he can fade entirely into the background or be a critical element based entirely on how you and your group perceive him and his role. In other words...

Spoiler:

He has no official role or action to take after the pc's explore the Fair Fortune Livery and use his mother's key to get into Hocum's.

Second, his history is not much of a secret. Given his family's noble station it's reasonable to assume most members of Kintargo's major noble families (live in the Greens) know about him. And given her history with his mother, seems reasonable to assume Laria knows as well. Also (and this is more my interpretation) I think the intention is for most of Golarion to be much less hung up about this sort of thing. With many different species beyond humans with their own physiology and some deities demonstrating similar... fluidity in gender, probably not much of a surprise. Again my view - Rexus views his gender as normal and fully actualized so to him it's not an item that gets a lot of focus of his attention. He's male and that's how it is. He certainly would reach out to others on a similar personal journey and would not be ashamed or reluctant about his own background.


Honestly, given what happens to him through book one, I just played him as generic Eeyore with a side of hard-bitten revolutionary. Might help add side flavor for whatever you do with their gender in your role play.

Shadow Lodge

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Derryzumi wrote:
Would he be the type to keep it to himself until he absolutely needs to come out of the closet to others, like the "missions to supplement his dwindling supplies" suggested in the Campaign Role section, or would he immediately spot the trans PC, and be like "whoa, me too buddy"? Somewhere in between?

Crystal Frasier addressed this in the Book 1 GM thread. Basically, if a PC is clearly struggling with their identity, Rexus is the kind of person who would offer his experiences and support. He's empathetic, but not impressively observant (Wis 11, no ranks in Sense Motive or Perception) or proactive. If not prompted, he'll bring it up at some point, fairly casually, as a way to relate his own worldview to some topic. He will not hide his transition in order to provide the PCs with a mystery to solve!

When playing Rexus, just be open to how your player seems to be playing his PC, and let yourself be guided accordingly.

Liberty's Edge

Pathfinder Adventure Path, Lost Omens, Rulebook Subscriber
zimmerwald1915 wrote:


Crystal Frasier addressed this in the Book 1 GM thread. Basically, if a PC is clearly struggling with their identity, Rexus is the kind of person who would offer his experiences and support. He's empathetic, but not impressively observant (Wis 11, no ranks in Sense Motive or Perception) or proactive. If not prompted, he'll bring it up at some point, fairly casually, as a way to relate his own worldview to some topic. He will not hide his transition in order to provide the PCs with a mystery to solve!

When playing Rexus, just be open to how your player seems to be playing his PC, and let yourself be guided accordingly.

Oooh, this is a Godsend! Thank you so much! This little tidbit'll make him especially fun to play as!

Speaking of which- I know he doesn't have much else to do in the story other than get everyone started. Is there any way to keep him relevant other than just having him sat down in the Silver Raven's HQ at all times, or what?


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I personally sort of put Rexus on a deathwish pattern after the events of the Many Steps Monastery and he gets confirmation that his parents are dead (I had him being hopelessly optimistic they survived the Night of Ashes and were surely too busy being in hiding to contact him). Rather than sitting around doing translations he joined one of the various rebellion teams and due to his recklessness started causing friction and/or danger to himself and others.

If left to his own devices he'd probably end up getting himself killed unless the PCs manage to identify the problem and talk him down. At that point you can bulk up his levels a bit and keep him on hand as back up for the Dance of the Damned or as a province holder in Song of Silver.


I rebranded him as an Ancestors Oracle with the Blackened Curse. So, basically, he does emergency healing in addition to providing bleak advice.


The empathetic bit may work if your players care for that sort of personal drama. Otherwise, I did have him ask the party for money but -my party being dissinterested in this stuff- just gave him what he wanted no questions asked. How they found out: When talking to the nobles for alliances they had Rexus go along, I have some particularly obnoxious noble refer to him as a 'she'. Party didn't blink, we moved on :p


Regarding the dwindling supplies - my reading is that this is for his frail constitution

The OP's question seems to be on the basis that his transition is based on alchemical substances. Have I misunderstood?

Which is it? Or is this covered in the Book 1 thread?


Quote:
A variety of alchemical concoctions has minimized his feminine traits and allowed Rexus to grow into manhood as any young man would.
Quote:
...he still requires expensive alchemical unguents to maintain his health, and extended withdrawal leaves him depressed, irritable, and sickened.

That's all I could find. I assumed that his supplies were linked to his transition. Since my PCs just asked "All good mate?" and then handed him enough gold for three years supplies I didn't think much of it. Now that it's mentioned though, why is his constitution frail?


Alni wrote:
Quote:
A variety of alchemical concoctions has minimized his feminine traits and allowed Rexus to grow into manhood as any young man would.
Quote:
...he still requires expensive alchemical unguents to maintain his health, and extended withdrawal leaves him depressed, irritable, and sickened.
That's all I could find. I assumed that his supplies were linked to his transition. Since my PCs just asked "All good mate?" and then handed him enough gold for three years supplies I didn't think much of it. Now that it's mentioned though, why is his constitution frail?

The story mentions a childhood illness

It is still odd because no NPC usually has a stat lower than an 8

Shadow Lodge

Lanathar wrote:
Alni wrote:
Quote:
A variety of alchemical concoctions has minimized his feminine traits and allowed Rexus to grow into manhood as any young man would.
Quote:
...he still requires expensive alchemical unguents to maintain his health, and extended withdrawal leaves him depressed, irritable, and sickened.
That's all I could find. I assumed that his supplies were linked to his transition. Since my PCs just asked "All good mate?" and then handed him enough gold for three years supplies I didn't think much of it. Now that it's mentioned though, why is his constitution frail?

The story mentions a childhood illness

It is still odd because no NPC usually has a stat lower than an 8

He's still built on a 15-point buy. Like the PCs for this and all other APs are supposed to be.


zimmerwald1915 wrote:
Lanathar wrote:
Alni wrote:
Quote:
A variety of alchemical concoctions has minimized his feminine traits and allowed Rexus to grow into manhood as any young man would.
Quote:
...he still requires expensive alchemical unguents to maintain his health, and extended withdrawal leaves him depressed, irritable, and sickened.
That's all I could find. I assumed that his supplies were linked to his transition. Since my PCs just asked "All good mate?" and then handed him enough gold for three years supplies I didn't think much of it. Now that it's mentioned though, why is his constitution frail?

The story mentions a childhood illness

It is still odd because no NPC usually has a stat lower than an 8
He's still built on a 15-point buy. Like the PCs for this and all other APs are supposed to be.

I got mixed up between npc's with 15 point buy and those with the elite array

Shadow Lodge

Lanathar wrote:
zimmerwald1915 wrote:
Lanathar wrote:
Alni wrote:
Quote:
A variety of alchemical concoctions has minimized his feminine traits and allowed Rexus to grow into manhood as any young man would.
Quote:
...he still requires expensive alchemical unguents to maintain his health, and extended withdrawal leaves him depressed, irritable, and sickened.
That's all I could find. I assumed that his supplies were linked to his transition. Since my PCs just asked "All good mate?" and then handed him enough gold for three years supplies I didn't think much of it. Now that it's mentioned though, why is his constitution frail?

The story mentions a childhood illness

It is still odd because no NPC usually has a stat lower than an 8
He's still built on a 15-point buy. Like the PCs for this and all other APs are supposed to be.
I got mixed up between npc's with 15 point buy and those with the elite array

Elite array is a 15-point buy - a specific 15-point buy.


When my players learn that Rexus was born in a female body does anyone have a valid reason why he buys "expensive alchemical unguents" rather than having have tracked down a Elixir of Sex Shifting years ago?


Because his parents were murdered, his noble manse burned to the ground, and he's on the lam with no income. As for years ago, well, you know, perhaps it took him too long to decide to make it a permanent change? Your source was 2014, while the first book was 2015, so they could have given that to him, you're right.


Also aren’t “expensive” alchemical ointments usually no more than 50gp. Expensive for a common labourer yes

But 2,250gp is a different ball game.

And even if the cost over his life works out more than the above - consider that having upfront cash is tough. Think mortgages


Roguerouge, yeah, I was thinking more of his family having bought him the elixir before everything went to hell.
Lanathar, that makes sense! A noble family spending that much at one time, when put into that perspective, makes sense. If the ointments are 50 gold a month the elixir is nearly 4 years worth of elixirs... I can work with that reason. And it may give the PCs a good role-playing opportunity when/if they decide to buy it for him.

Anyone and everyone: Any thoughts on the cost of the unguents per month and how frequently he needs them?


Warped Savant wrote:

Roguerouge, yeah, I was thinking more of his family having bought him the elixir before everything went to hell.

Lanathar, that makes sense! A noble family spending that much at one time, when put into that perspective, makes sense. If the ointments are 50 gold a month the elixir is nearly 4 years worth of elixirs... I can work with that reason. And it may give the PCs a good role-playing opportunity when/if they decide to buy it for him.

Anyone and everyone: Any thoughts on the cost of the unguents per month and how frequently he needs them?

I had set it to 10 gold per month :)


Warped Savant wrote:
Anyone and everyone: Any thoughts on the cost of the unguents per month and how frequently he needs them?

The Adventurer's Guide has you covered:

Anderos Salve and Mulibrous Tincture (Rexus would be using the former): 5 gp.

He needs to apply it twice a week over a period of 6 months. After that, it's permanent.


LittleMissNaga wrote:
Warped Savant wrote:
Anyone and everyone: Any thoughts on the cost of the unguents per month and how frequently he needs them?

The Adventurer's Guide has you covered:

Anderos Salve and Mulibrous Tincture (Rexus would be using the former): 5 gp.

He needs to apply it twice a week over a period of 6 months. After that, it's permanent.

So does that imply his decision was incredibly recent if he is still applying it ?


LittleMissNaga wrote:
Warped Savant wrote:
Anyone and everyone: Any thoughts on the cost of the unguents per month and how frequently he needs them?

The Adventurer's Guide has you covered:

Anderos Salve and Mulibrous Tincture (Rexus would be using the former): 5 gp.

He needs to apply it twice a week over a period of 6 months. After that, it's permanent.

Perfect! Thank you!

Lanathar -- If that's what you have him using, and you use it as written, then yes, that would mean he only recently discovered it and started using it. (Perhaps it's taken him a long time to learn of it and was only recently able to find a supplier for it.)
I'm probably going to have it either take longer than 6 months (maybe it's never permanent?) or possibly the supplier is lying to Rexus and he only thinks he still needs it throughout the AP.

Shadow Lodge

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Warped Savant wrote:
or possibly the supplier is lying to Rexus and he only thinks he still needs it throughout the AP.

Considering his supplier is in all probability the Newt, this seems likely.


zimmerwald1915 wrote:
Considering his supplier is in all probability the Newt, this seems likely.

OH! Good call!


Quick off-hand note on this, Mulibrous Tincture is Described as a "bitter, Minty Tea." Assuming some similar alchemical materials, Anderos Salve may smell pretty highly of mint as well, which could run smack up against Barzlillai's 7th Proclamation (and the 6th for Mulibrous Tincture)!


Indeed. Barzy does not want those Milanians to enjoy there tee.
Regardless, i would suggest this:

Rexus has no problem talking about his sex change. I just don't think it would weight at any level for a person that the pc meet when he was almost mugged and that's gonna discover to have lost his family.

However, i would justify in game is frail constitution by having in his backstory to have shifted his gender in a non secure way, maybe by trying to produce by himself/herself the potion.

Being a sorcerer and of noble birth, he should have had all the education and resources needed to either buy it or, if that was somehow against his family wishes, produce it by himself.

By having consumed a defective potion, he could still be in need to assume some kind of medicament to adjust some lesser ailment, but that seems a very background element, unless Rexy gets in from of the stage by actually being a noble heir of one of the houses of Kingarto.


Given that Rexus is described as being of more delicate health, it could be that the potions are meant to fight another chronic medical condition. (Rexus could even have been born intersex with the female characteristics predominant but he identified as male.) The potions could be to treat diabetes or rheumatoid arthritis, which would very much require regular treatment, and could be a comorbid condition.


When my party went to investigate the ruins of the Victocora estate, I had them discover a dented lockbox that survived the collapse in a small alcove under a staircase. Inside they found a worn, simple wooden amulet bearing the holy symbol of Irori (a memento from Porcia's days as an Iroran monk), and a hand painted portrait of the family. The portrait showed Rexus's parents and between them a little girl with the same expressive brown eyes and curly brown hair. The party assumed the little girl was a sister or even his mother.

When they returned to the Wasp's Nest, they show Rexus the portrait and he lovingly traces his fingers over his parents' likenesses. He reveals matter of factly that the little girl in the portrait was him. He reveals that he was raised for the first decade of his life as a girl, but his parents accepted his male identity without hesitation despite the social blowback. He reminisces briefly about the Shelynite priest who aided his transition. Unless there's some direct contradtiction of this in the story (haven't read all the books yet), I'll likely have that priest be none other than Zachrin Vhast, current high priest at Songbird Hall. Described as "androgynous" in his little blurb on the back cover, and the book briefly mentions his "performing illegal marriages in Nidal". I think that's a good enough foothold to build out that connection.

I imagine that the Victocoras could have afforded the Elixir of Sex Shifting, though it would have come quite dear for them. Something like that Elixir might not be common knowledge outside of certain circles. The NPC background states that Rexus had coveted that life, but never pursued it until meeting the Shelynite tutor, so maybe neither Rexus nor his parents realized that it was a true possibility until then.


Just as some more general character notes:

-Rexus is not hopeful for his parents survival, but the lack of closure does give him a glimmer of hope. But he isn't delusional, people who get disappeared by the Thrunes don't usually have good things happen to them.

-I play him as a bit hapless and absent-minded professor, but in a very endearing, self-aware kind of way. This is how I interpreted his higher charisma score, while keeping him out of the direct spotlight within the rebellion.

-He spends most of his time plopped in front of a mountain of papers in the hideout, with a giant coffee and plate of pastries from upstairs. Treep Fushi has become his unofficial office assistant.

-Rexus's gender identity is totally matter of fact. It's not something he shoehorns into conversations, but he doesn't hide it either. It's not any kind of secret, though people outside of the Greens (my PCs) would have little reason to know or care about such scandals among the nobles. Laria has known for years of course, and probably even helped connect Rexus with his alchemical needs via the Newt.

-I really love the idea of connecting the proclamation against mint to the existence of the Mulibrous Tincture and Anderos Salve. An underhanded way for the Thrunes to indirectly cause harm to "aberrant" segments of the population.


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Had him go the Batman route after knowing that his parents were dead... with a retraining into Vigilante (Magical Child), where Vendalfek got to be his familiar. I hope nobody gets offended, but he transformed back into his female version in his vigilante identity and ran around under the moniker "The Queen of Thorns", with the thought behind that he represents Milanis more radical side.


I had Barzillai make a Proclamation banning gender transition potions for "undermining the Thrune-ordained social fabric which supports the Dependent City of Chelish Kintargo". The PCs used a rebel team modeled off of Avatar The Last Airbender characters to "acquire" some extralegally, and then went off to ruin Barzillai's birthday.

this was before Barzillai Proclaimed Kintargo to be the "City and Seat of the Imperial Empire of NEW BARZILLAI!!!", of course.

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