Trying to figure out how my Paladin of Sarenrae got to Sandpoint


Rise of the Runelords


My group is going to start playing Rise of the Runelords next week. I've got a character figure out, but I'm having trouble figuring out how he got to Sandpoint.

My character is Baros, a Pitborn Tiefling who is a Paladin of Saranrae. I originally played for a little bit in an Eberron campaign using Pathfinder rules, but the group fell apart not long after we hit level 2. Thing is, I was really intrigued by Baros as a character, because the first notable thing he did was accidentally seduce a dwarven serving girl without trying the first night he stayed in the tavern. I instantly established him in my mind having a succubus somewhere in his family tree, and him having a natural talent with women.

My current group was initially playing a few PFS modules, so we're starting the AP at level 2. I was playing another character for those PFS sessions, but Baros' concept just wormed its way back into my mind and I felt he would be so much more interesting to play then my old character. So I retired my old character and got GM permission to bring in Baros. This gives Baros a bit of leeway for how he gets to Sandpoint.

I'm was thinking that Baros goes to Sandpoint as part of a pilgrimage, but my initial reasons for said pilgrimage might not work out as well as I initially hoped. I was under the belief that the worship of Sarenrae was more common in Varisia than it actually is, given that Sandpoint has a shrine to Her in the town cathedral.

The original idea was for Baros to simply go on pilgrimage to Varisia and just visit the various sites of worship in the country, him being in Sandpoint when the AP starts. But now that I know that Sarenrae worship isn't as wide-spread there as I initially thought, would it be too "out there" for him to have received a vision to head to Sandpoint?

I was leaning for him to originally be from Absalom, him having been abandoned at the entry way to the Sarenrae temple in the Ascendant Court as a baby. Could Baros have received a vision from Sarenrae to go to Sandpoint at level 2, or should a more experienced cleric have had the vision? Or maybe there should be a better way for him to get to Sandpoint? I don't think Baros is a Sandpoint native. A Tiefling born in such a small town would be such a scandal, I'm not sure if it's appropriate.


I don't want to spoil anything, but there's plenty of reason for a tiefling to be born in Sandpoint.

Maybe Baros was born in Sandpoint but when his fiendish heritage was revealed at birth he was quietly sent away to Magnimar, and given to the temple of Sarenrae who raised him as a paladin. And now he's returning to the home he never knew.

But the main thing is work with your GM, they should have read the whole AP and there's plenty of cool tie ins.


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Artofregicide wrote:

I don't want to spoil anything, but there's plenty of reason for a tiefling to be born in Sandpoint.

Maybe Baros was born in Sandpoint but when his fiendish heritage was revealed at birth he was quietly sent away to Magnimar, and given to the temple of Sarenrae who raised him as a paladin. And now he's returning to the home he never knew.

But the main thing is work with your GM, they should have read the whole AP and there's plenty of cool tie ins.

Huh. I was unaware there was a temple to Sarenrae in Magnimar. I can easily alter his backstory so that Baros was born in Magnimar instead of Absalom. I only went with Absalom because I thought that was the closest place of worship for Sarenrae outside of Qadira and Northern Garund.

And it makes the reason why he headed to Sandpoint all that more easier. It was easy to hear through the grapevine that Sandpoint was going to have a festival to celebrate the inauguration of the new Sandpoint Cathedral, and he went there as a representative of the Magnimar Temple of Sarenrae.


Madokar Valortouched wrote:
Artofregicide wrote:

I don't want to spoil anything, but there's plenty of reason for a tiefling to be born in Sandpoint.

Maybe Baros was born in Sandpoint but when his fiendish heritage was revealed at birth he was quietly sent away to Magnimar, and given to the temple of Sarenrae who raised him as a paladin. And now he's returning to the home he never knew.

But the main thing is work with your GM, they should have read the whole AP and there's plenty of cool tie ins.

Huh. I was unaware there was a temple to Sarenrae in Magnimar. I can easily alter his backstory so that Baros was born in Magnimar instead of Absalom. I only went with Absalom because I thought that was the closest place of worship for Sarenrae outside of Qadira and Northern Garund.

And it makes the reason why he headed to Sandpoint all that more easier. It was easy to hear through the grapevine that Sandpoint was going to have a festival to celebrate the inauguration of the new Sandpoint Cathedral, and he went there as a representative of the Magnimar Temple of Sarenrae.

There was when I played in RoftRL but I don't remember if there actually is or our GM added it. Either way it's not a particularly big detail to add.

EDIT: just checked the Pathfinder Wiki and it confirms there is a temple of Sarenrae.


Artofregicide wrote:
Madokar Valortouched wrote:
Artofregicide wrote:

I don't want to spoil anything, but there's plenty of reason for a tiefling to be born in Sandpoint.

Maybe Baros was born in Sandpoint but when his fiendish heritage was revealed at birth he was quietly sent away to Magnimar, and given to the temple of Sarenrae who raised him as a paladin. And now he's returning to the home he never knew.

But the main thing is work with your GM, they should have read the whole AP and there's plenty of cool tie ins.

Huh. I was unaware there was a temple to Sarenrae in Magnimar. I can easily alter his backstory so that Baros was born in Magnimar instead of Absalom. I only went with Absalom because I thought that was the closest place of worship for Sarenrae outside of Qadira and Northern Garund.

And it makes the reason why he headed to Sandpoint all that more easier. It was easy to hear through the grapevine that Sandpoint was going to have a festival to celebrate the inauguration of the new Sandpoint Cathedral, and he went there as a representative of the Magnimar Temple of Sarenrae.

There was when I played in RoftRL but I don't remember if there actually is or our GM added it. Either way it's not a particularly big detail to add.

EDIT: just checked the Pathfinder Wiki and it confirms there is a temple of Sarenrae.

I checked the Pathfinder Wiki too. I've been trying to stay off of there before we start the AP. It's so easy to come across spoilers in a wiki.


Minor Spoiler for what Artofregicide's GM did:

There is no major church of Sarenrae in the cannon of Magnimar - the named locations in the city are to Erastil (Deadeye Lordge), Calistria (Dome of the Savored Sting), the Church of Pharasma, the Temple of Iomedai, and the Cathedral of Abadar.

What there IS, at least in the Magnimar sourcebook, is an old 'Shrine of Sarenrae' in the Underbridge district. It has been abandoned for untold decades, as the founder and his accolytes were set upon by local thugs for refusing to pay protection money only a few months after the building was finished.

This is a pretty decent hook for someone heading to Magnimar, but the AP isn't based in the city.

I would instead point this out to your GM for possible development later in the campaign, but for your backstory use the Windsong Abbey. For the most part the Abbey is little more than a point on maps of Varisia, receiving only blurbs in a couple of different books.

This PathfinderWiki about it doesn't have any spoilers for the AP. It might have minor spoilers for Book 4 of Shattered Star, but from what I can tell it would only be that it IS a location.

I've used Windsong Abbey as a pilgrimage destination for PCs in the past, usual during downtime events. In short - it's a diplomatic haven and shrine for all faiths.

If your paladin Baros needs a reason to have travelled to the area, he could likely have been headed to the Abbey but stopped in Sandpoint on the way when he found out the special circumstances of the Swallowtail Festival that year and that the new Cathedral, including a shrine to Sarenrae, was being opened.


If he's a Tiefling, he's more likely to be from Cheliax or somewhere with related connections like Korvosa. Tieflings are second-class citizens at best in Cheliax, and a paladin of Saranrae would be even less popular. So he could be fleeing from the Hellknights after doing {insert good deed here} or hunting down an evildoer. Or both.


Mudfoot wrote:
If he's a Tiefling, he's more likely to be from Cheliax or somewhere with related connections like Korvosa. Tieflings are second-class citizens at best in Cheliax, and a paladin of Saranrae would be even less popular. So he could be fleeing from the Hellknights after doing {insert good deed here} or hunting down an evildoer. Or both.

Agreed, except he's a *demon-blooded* tiefling, and Cheliax is a nation of devil worshippers. It's not impossible, just not any likelier than anywhere else.


HeftyUpTop wrote:

Minor Spoiler for what Artofregicide's GM did:

There is no major church of Sarenrae in the cannon of Magnimar - the named locations in the city are to Erastil (Deadeye Lordge), Calistria (Dome of the Savored Sting), the Church of Pharasma, the Temple of Iomedai, and the Cathedral of Abadar.

What there IS, at least in the Magnimar sourcebook, is an old 'Shrine of Sarenrae' in the Underbridge district. It has been abandoned for untold decades, as the founder and his accolytes were set upon by local thugs for refusing to pay protection money only a few months after the building was finished.

This is a pretty decent hook for someone heading to Magnimar, but the AP isn't based in the city.

I would instead point this out to your GM for possible development later in the campaign, but for your backstory use the Windsong Abbey. For the most part the Abbey is little more than a point on maps of Varisia, receiving only blurbs in a couple of different books.

This PathfinderWiki about it doesn't have any spoilers for the AP. It might have minor spoilers for Book 4 of Shattered Star, but from what I can tell it would only be that it IS a location.

I've used Windsong Abbey as a pilgrimage destination for PCs in the past, usual during downtime events. In short - it's a diplomatic haven and shrine for all faiths.

If your paladin Baros needs a reason to have travelled to the area, he could likely have been headed to the Abbey but stopped in Sandpoint on the way when he found out the special circumstances of the Swallowtail Festival that year and that the new Cathedral, including a shrine to Sarenrae, was being opened.

Argh... I'm having trouble keeping it all together. Perhaps Baros is simply wandering Varisia's various holy sites when he stopped at Sandpoint after he heard about the cathedral dedication?

And after checking Magnimar's entry on the Pathfinder Wiki, there is a temple of Sarenrae in the city limits. Though there is no mention of where it is or if it is abandoned or not.


Artofregicide wrote:
Mudfoot wrote:
If he's a Tiefling, he's more likely to be from Cheliax or somewhere with related connections like Korvosa. Tieflings are second-class citizens at best in Cheliax, and a paladin of Saranrae would be even less popular. So he could be fleeing from the Hellknights after doing {insert good deed here} or hunting down an evildoer. Or both.
Agreed, except he's a *demon-blooded* tiefling, and Cheliax is a nation of devil worshippers. It's not impossible, just not any likelier than anywhere else.

That kind of hullabaloo is why I was initially thinking of Baros being from Absalom and was sent to Sandpoint as part of a vision either received during his ritual prayers or by a more experienced clergyman.

I WAS thinking that Baros is now from Magnimar and was raised in the Temple of Sarenrae there. But now I'm not so sure there IS an active temple to Sarenrae in Magnimar.

Sovereign Court

The abandoned temple of Sarenrae in Magnimar features in the comics. It might give you some ideas.


GeraintElberion wrote:
The abandoned temple of Sarenrae in Magnimar features in the comics. It might give you some ideas.

Given how recent the comics are, I'd say they are pretty close to canon. So there ISN'T an active temple of Sarenrae in Magnimar... Darn...

Which comics feature the abandoned temple?


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I mean, to be totally fair, all we can talk about is what is cannon in the sourcebooks/material. Your game, and your GM, certainly also have their OWN cannon to what Magnimar and the rest of the setting is/has/was.

I'd make sure to be talking with them about these things and working together to build something. We on the boards don't know what material your GM is using, what they're changing, or how they might be willing to adapt to your desired backstory.

Dark Archive

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Pathfinder Adventure Path Subscriber

Varisia has a history of being the playground of Abyssal entities, so he could definitely be of demonic heritage and be relatively local - native to the region, at least, even if not the Magnimar protectorate.

My recommendation is that he's actually from Korvosa initially - they have a shrine in that city, though it's not a large one. If you don't want to go a supernatural route and receive a vision from the Dawnflower, then maybe Baros simply heard about the reconstruction and reconsecration of the cathedral after the fires during the Late Unpleasantness, and petitioned his superior within the church hierarchy to go on pilgrimage to the new temple. It would allow him to show up in time for the ceremony, and the distance from his church means he's effectively a lone operator in the town.

I'm pretty certain that if you work with your GM, they'll be pleased to find a reason your tiefling paladin could be in Sandpoint. :)


HeftyUpTop wrote:

I mean, to be totally fair, all we can talk about is what is cannon in the sourcebooks/material. Your game, and your GM, certainly also have their OWN cannon to what Magnimar and the rest of the setting is/has/was.

I'd make sure to be talking with them about these things and working together to build something. We on the boards don't know what material your GM is using, what they're changing, or how they might be willing to adapt to your desired backstory.

If the status of a Magnimar temple is iffy, I think the safe bet is to use the original concept of Baros being from Absalom and being sent on a pilgrimage after someone at the Temple of Sarenrae in the Ascendant Court had a vision during their ritual prayers.


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Misroi wrote:
My recommendation is that he's actually from Korvosa initially - they have a shrine in that city, though it's not a large one.

Actually, the temple of Sarenrae in Korvosa isn't a small shrine, but a turreted building on the Citaldel Hill, swarmed by crowds of commoners and constantly attracting gifts from wealthy patrons. It's the shrine in Magnimar that is small and abandoned.

Sovereign Court

Madokar Valortouched wrote:
GeraintElberion wrote:
The abandoned temple of Sarenrae in Magnimar features in the comics. It might give you some ideas.

Given how recent the comics are, I'd say they are pretty close to canon. So there ISN'T an active temple of Sarenrae in Magnimar... Darn...

Which comics feature the abandoned temple?

The City of Secrets arc.

It is a tweaked version of the Dawn of the Scarlet Sun module, which is based around followers of Sarenrae being kidnapped in Magnimar.

There’s also a spoiler for Ruins of Azlant.

Dawn of the Scarlet Sun is a free pdf here at Paizo.


Misroi wrote:

Varisia has a history of being the playground of Abyssal entities, so he could definitely be of demonic heritage and be relatively local - native to the region, at least, even if not the Magnimar protectorate.

My recommendation is that he's actually from Korvosa initially - they have a shrine in that city, though it's not a large one. If you don't want to go a supernatural route and receive a vision from the Dawnflower, then maybe Baros simply heard about the reconstruction and reconsecration of the cathedral after the fires during the Late Unpleasantness, and petitioned his superior within the church hierarchy to go on pilgrimage to the new temple. It would allow him to show up in time for the ceremony, and the distance from his church means he's effectively a lone operator in the town.

I'm pretty certain that if you work with your GM, they'll be pleased to find a reason your tiefling paladin could be in Sandpoint. :)

Korvosa... I dunno... I can see Magnimar hearing about what's happening in Sandpoint, but isn't Korvosa too far away? Once I get a certain point of distance away from Sandpoint, the more I lean towards someone in Baros' church having a vision and sending him on a pilgrimage.

Or maybe he's just on a self-imposed pilgrimage to see the various holy sites of Sarenrae in Varisia.


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He's a holy warrior with a big sword and maybe something of a messiah complex. So he might have decided to go and bring some justice to that pit of iniquity known as Riddleport. And the boat stops (scheduled stop? for repairs?) in Sandpoint, where there just happens to be a festival for the new cathedral. Might as well see the show and pop in for a quick pray. Oh look, goblins.


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Sarenrae's priests are known for blessing crops, so it could be that he was sent from the temple in Korvosa to travel and bless the work of the farmers as well as spread the message of Sarenrae. He is a junior member so he is sent to a series of small towns instead of larger settlements, but he will obviously pass through places like Sandpoint. Once there, it would make sense that he would attend the festival to support the new cathedral as Sarenrae has a shrine.

That has it fall somewhere between a task and a pilgrimage, more in line with the temple giving him training to prepare him for greater works.


Droeg wrote:

Sarenrae's priests are known for blessing crops, so it could be that he was sent from the temple in Korvosa to travel and bless the work of the farmers as well as spread the message of Sarenrae. He is a junior member so he is sent to a series of small towns instead of larger settlements, but he will obviously pass through places like Sandpoint. Once there, it would make sense that he would attend the festival to support the new cathedral as Sarenrae has a shrine.

That has it fall somewhere between a task and a pilgrimage, more in line with the temple giving him training to prepare him for greater works.

That's actually pretty solid for a character origin. Though as a paladin, and especially considering he will be a Tempered Champion, he doesn't actually have any means to magically bless crops. But he DOES have two ranks in Heal. Maybe he's sent out as a healer as well as being a messenger of Sarenrae?


Mudfoot wrote:
He's a holy warrior with a big sword and maybe something of a messiah complex. So he might have decided to go and bring some justice to that pit of iniquity known as Riddleport. And the boat stops (scheduled stop? for repairs?) in Sandpoint, where there just happens to be a festival for the new cathedral. Might as well see the show and pop in for a quick pray. Oh look, goblins.

I tend to avoid the zealot style of play when it comes to playing Paladins. Especially for a Paladin of Sarenrae. Baros even has Divine Fighting Technique - Sarenrae's Mercy as his first level feat instead of the usual Power Attack (though he will pick that up later).

Besides, Sarenites tend to use their words first and their swords only against the truly irredeemable.


Madokar Valortouched wrote:
Droeg wrote:

Sarenrae's priests are known for blessing crops, so it could be that he was sent from the temple in Korvosa to travel and bless the work of the farmers as well as spread the message of Sarenrae. He is a junior member so he is sent to a series of small towns instead of larger settlements, but he will obviously pass through places like Sandpoint. Once there, it would make sense that he would attend the festival to support the new cathedral as Sarenrae has a shrine.

That has it fall somewhere between a task and a pilgrimage, more in line with the temple giving him training to prepare him for greater works.

That's actually pretty solid for a character origin. Though as a paladin, and especially considering he will be a Tempered Champion, he doesn't actually have any means to magically bless crops. But he DOES have two ranks in Heal. Maybe he's sent out as a healer as well as being a messenger of Sarenrae?

Hmm, that's a fair point. I took blessing crops as reciting prayers to Sarenrae over the crops, asking for her favor, rather than an actual literal magical blessing.

The healing angle is a great thought, he could be sent out to offer aid to those settlements that are generally too far from a temple but would welcome the chance to be healed.

It would fit well with a Tempered Champion - the temple is not naive, they know sending him out alone will expose him to the perils of the world. The resulting combats will temper his faith and his skill.


Droeg wrote:
Madokar Valortouched wrote:
Droeg wrote:

Sarenrae's priests are known for blessing crops, so it could be that he was sent from the temple in Korvosa to travel and bless the work of the farmers as well as spread the message of Sarenrae. He is a junior member so he is sent to a series of small towns instead of larger settlements, but he will obviously pass through places like Sandpoint. Once there, it would make sense that he would attend the festival to support the new cathedral as Sarenrae has a shrine.

That has it fall somewhere between a task and a pilgrimage, more in line with the temple giving him training to prepare him for greater works.

That's actually pretty solid for a character origin. Though as a paladin, and especially considering he will be a Tempered Champion, he doesn't actually have any means to magically bless crops. But he DOES have two ranks in Heal. Maybe he's sent out as a healer as well as being a messenger of Sarenrae?

Hmm, that's a fair point. I took blessing crops as reciting prayers to Sarenrae over the crops, asking for her favor, rather than an actual literal magical blessing.

The healing angle is a great thought, he could be sent out to offer aid to those settlements that are generally too far from a temple but would welcome the chance to be healed.

It would fit well with a Tempered Champion - the temple is not naive, they know sending him out alone will expose him to the perils of the world. The resulting combats will temper his faith and his skill.

I think I've got a way for Baros to get to Sandpoint now. Thanks everybody for all your input!


Sarenrae is one of the top 6 deities in Varisia-- that's why she got a wing of the temple. (Well, discounting evil gods like Lamashtu probably.) The last two religious leaders of the town have been clerics of Desna, but that doesn't mean the other people working at the cathedral have to be Desnan, or most of the townsfolk for that matter. Considering the cathedral is being consecrated, it would make sense to send out a paladin to at least be present and represent.

It sounds like you have it figured out, just clarifying that I don't think the problem you initially had was much of a problem after all.


Captain Morgan wrote:

Sarenrae is one of the top 6 deities in Varisia-- that's why she got a wing of the temple. (Well, discounting evil gods like Lamashtu probably.) The last two religious leaders of the town have been clerics of Desna, but that doesn't mean the other people working at the cathedral have to be Desnan, or most of the townsfolk for that matter. Considering the cathedral is being consecrated, it would make sense to send out a paladin to at least be present and represent.

It sounds like you have it figured out, just clarifying that I don't think the problem you initially had was much of a problem after all.

We had our first session last night. Baros' established backstory works surprisingly well, since it ingratiated me with Father Zantus (despite his back-handed racism) and I think I struck up a friendship with Ameiko after Lonjiku came into the tavern and berated her for running the Rusty Dragon and doing musical performances.

Lonjiku slapped Ameiko after she stood up to him (after she got some encouragement after Baros stood up for her initially). Baros punched Lonjiku. Ameiko ran upstairs, and I helped comfort her over the fact that our heritage means nothing. It's what we do with our lives that matters.

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