Sunday, May 31, 2009

Labyrinth Lord with Nick

Alignment issues can be terribly complicating in the game, but really add to plot development...

Nick had rolled up five characters, three of whom might eventually join his party (or any of whom he may need to utilize should his chosen main protagonist die). One of the things I didn't put on my LL index cards originally was alignment. This was a mistake (since corrected), but turned out well as the ones I filled out, scanned, and emailed to Nick for our game didn't include it, and so he doesn't necessarily know the alignments of the others in his party. He chose one of his characters to play (a cleric named Agnal) and his alignment.

He chose to make him chaotic (evil).

Now, bear in mind that the back story here is that Agnal and a fellow cleric, Mog, are travelling to a village from an adjacent county in order to investigate for their church whether or not there's really been an up-welling of evil in the vicinity, as rumors have indicated. If it's true, the extent of the problem is to be determined, and they are then to report back to their superiors in the church. Mog's (and for appearance's sake, Agnal's) deity is avowedly not evil - in fact the opposite.

Spoiler alert! Nick, stop reading!

The village is indeed experiencing problems with a resurgent evil, and the townsfolk are highly suspicious and carefully watching outsiders to be on guard against it.

Agnal and Mog played the usual part of detectives, asking a local here and there if they'd seen anything unusual lately. Eventually they made their way to the village's own church (of a different faith) to pursue a conversation with the local priest about their mission, who sent them, and to offer aid if needed. Now in the course of this conversation, the friendly local priest invited them to sit down for tea (after soliciting a donation - everyone is solicited, especially out-of-towners!)... At this time, while Mog was distracted with some of the local faith's religious written propaganda and Agnal was lifting a cup of tea to his face to be sure that the tea did in fact taste of dirt and mushrooms, the priest made some quick hand gestures and cast a spell. What spell, praytell? Why, Detect Evil of course!

Neither Agnal nor Mog know this spell, and so although Agnal thought he saw some strange gesturing, he didn't know its purpose. The change in tone of the formerly friendly priest was unmistakeable however. He had suddenly remembered a host of chores he needed to attend to, and something that he'd forgotten to tell the canon about. He excused himself a bit hurriedly, and Nick decided it was time to make a hasty exit out a door in the opposite direction.

It then dawned on me that there's just no way that Nick's character wouldn't have been vetted in exactly this way, at some point, by his own church. Now, Mog is supposedly an equal of Agnal, but Agnal's charisma (at least Agnal had thought) had earned him the original appointment to his and Mog's task. Mog had been ordered to support him in it, at least as far as Agnal knew. The truth is, or I should say, has evolved to be, that their church leaders fully knew the true alignment of Agnal. Mog wasn't sent to help Agnal - she was sent to spy on him, and see if he was connected to the evil in the village where they'd been sent.

Nick suspects that the local church leaders are now on to him. He was wise not to reveal where they were staying, but in such a small town, it won't be hard to track him down to the village's only tavern. If he's cornered by the village elders, he'll likely be interrogated and imprisoned, with Mog only too eager to aid them. Will Agnal realize his naivete before it's too late, taking drastic measures to escape from getting caught in his own web of deceipt? :-O


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