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    Canonfire :: View topic - The Enmity of Syrul
    Canonfire Forum Index -> World of Greyhawk Discussion
    The Enmity of Syrul
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    Journeyman Greytalker

    Joined: Sep 20, 2001
    Posts: 296


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    Sun Jul 10, 2022 5:16 pm  
    The Enmity of Syrul

    Due to a poorly worded command to a nycadaemon he managed to briefly control, a character in my campaign inadvertently ended up sending the nycadaemon on a suicide mission to kill Syrul "for vengeance!" (his last words to the nycadaemon). He is unaware of what he's done, only knowing that the nycadaemon vanished.

    Obviously, the nycadaemon is going to fail and be tortured into revealing what happened and then destroyed (probably?). I'd like to hear opinions on exactly what actions the goddess should take against the character. I've been running a campaign in Greyhawk for almost forty years, but I bet the number of times Syrul's worshippers have been involved, ever, I could count on one hand. She doesn't seem to have any cult or organized presence in Greyhawk City, possibly worship amongst one or two of the Scarlet Brotherhood agents, but that's about it.

    Would the goddess take direct action (in her person) against the character? (this would likely be subtle, given her nature)
    Or would she trust to her Oerthly servants to take care of this business?

    For those of you that know the Age of Worms adventure path, we're in the City of Greyhawk, ready to begin the Hall of Harsh Reflections chapter. The characters are 7th and 8th level.

    The upcoming adventure, coincidentally enough, involves an assassination plot against the characters by a group of doppelgängers who have become thrall to a mind flayer. They're not connected with Syrul in any way, but the confluence of deception with Syrul's portfolio is very interesting.

    The module suggests an optional subplot where a PC is replaced by one of the doppelgängers to betray the party at a crucial moment. The idea is the player plays the doppelgänger, but the party has a chance to rescue the actual PC as a captive in the doppelgänger lair.

    I'd already decided to replace both the party henchmen, instead, because I couldn't come up with a plausible enough scenario for a PC replacement, given their individual skillsets (very likely to defeat a doppelgänger in 1-on-1 battle), general player paranoia, and the difficulty of the doppelgänger duplicating certain odd abilities if the replacement is successful.

    But this unexpected event has made me wonder if perhaps Syrul's first move might be to bolster or enable or aid the kidnapping of the PC in question and his replacement, perhaps with some kind of direct divine assistance. (In many ways, the PC in question would be the best one to replace, as his fellow players would be unlikely to suspect him.)

    I could imagine her using some power to ensure the replacement could happen irresistibly and/or be undetectable, and then maybe sending a servant or something to collect the PC personally for extradition to her personal realm. In this case, there'd be a ticking clock to rescue the PC, but, unfortunately, no one is going to know there's a ticking clock because no one else will know anything is going on.

    Any other suggestions on what she might do? What can she do that wouldn't piss off all of the other gods?

    Or perhaps she just sends a powerful servant from Hades/Gehenna to assist the doppelgängers?

    Or perhaps she just has her servants deal with this?

    I'd love to hear suggestions.
    Journeyman Greytalker

    Joined: Feb 01, 2005
    Posts: 182
    From: Columbus, Ohio

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    Tue Jul 12, 2022 12:06 pm  

    The simplest solution is for the goddess to return the defeated and humiliated nycadaemon to the heroes (with each of their names tattooed on its chest). It failed but she offered it a way to avoid destruction (and this keeps the other gods out of it). "Go destroy those who sent you after me, and I'll forget all about this idiocy." This could happen at any time since Syrul already has a full agenda of her own. Unless the PCs are of worldly importance, she'll probably ignore them or get to them later. Why rush it when they can amuse her by sweating during the interim.

    She might find the attempt on her existence mildly amusing and drop the whole thing. "What brass these fleas possess!" Perhaps she tells them (thru agents) that they are under her scrutiny for now (until they become useful).

    If it is really worth her time, she might send her mortal followers after them. But, not with violence. She might manipulate heroes to take the blame for one of her follower's current schemes (side trek). That should square things with her.

    Lastly, I would argue that a nycadaemon would take liberties with the directions it was given and pick a much softer target. It would kill it and then simply go home.

    My advice is not to overthink it. Don't penalize the player or group too harshly for a late-night oopsy. Let Syrul's response happen organically along the course of actual gameplay. You might find something more entertaining just pops up. So unless you just want to menace your players, maybe this is the easiest, quickest, and most believable solution.

    Keep us informed about your choices and the outcome, please.

    Cheers!
    Apprentice Greytalker

    Joined: Apr 30, 2022
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    Tue Jul 12, 2022 1:17 pm  
    Re: The Enmity of Syrul

    edmundscott wrote:
    Due to a poorly worded command to a nycadaemon he managed to briefly control, a character in my campaign inadvertently ended up sending the nycadaemon on a suicide mission to kill Syrul "for vengeance!" (his last words to the nycadaemon). He is unaware of what he's done, only knowing that the nycadaemon vanished.

    Obviously, the nycadaemon is going to fail and be tortured into revealing what happened and then destroyed (probably?). I'd like to hear opinions on exactly what actions the goddess should take against the character. I've been running a campaign in Greyhawk for almost forty years, but I bet the number of times Syrul's worshippers have been involved, ever, I could count on one hand. She doesn't seem to have any cult or organized presence in Greyhawk City, possibly worship amongst one or two of the Scarlet Brotherhood agents, but that's about it.

    Would the goddess take direct action (in her person) against the character? (this would likely be subtle, given her nature)
    Or would she trust to her Oerthly servants to take care of this business?

    For those of you that know the Age of Worms adventure path, we're in the City of Greyhawk, ready to begin the Hall of Harsh Reflections chapter. The characters are 7th and 8th level.

    The upcoming adventure, coincidentally enough, involves an assassination plot against the characters by a group of doppelgängers who have become thrall to a mind flayer. They're not connected with Syrul in any way, but the confluence of deception with Syrul's portfolio is very interesting.

    The module suggests an optional subplot where a PC is replaced by one of the doppelgängers to betray the party at a crucial moment. The idea is the player plays the doppelgänger, but the party has a chance to rescue the actual PC as a captive in the doppelgänger lair.

    I'd already decided to replace both the party henchmen, instead, because I couldn't come up with a plausible enough scenario for a PC replacement, given their individual skillsets (very likely to defeat a doppelgänger in 1-on-1 battle), general player paranoia, and the difficulty of the doppelgänger duplicating certain odd abilities if the replacement is successful.

    But this unexpected event has made me wonder if perhaps Syrul's first move might be to bolster or enable or aid the kidnapping of the PC in question and his replacement, perhaps with some kind of direct divine assistance. (In many ways, the PC in question would be the best one to replace, as his fellow players would be unlikely to suspect him.)

    I could imagine her using some power to ensure the replacement could happen irresistibly and/or be undetectable, and then maybe sending a servant or something to collect the PC personally for extradition to her personal realm. In this case, there'd be a ticking clock to rescue the PC, but, unfortunately, no one is going to know there's a ticking clock because no one else will know anything is going on.

    Any other suggestions on what she might do? What can she do that wouldn't piss off all of the other gods?

    Or perhaps she just sends a powerful servant from Hades/Gehenna to assist the doppelgängers?

    Or perhaps she just has her servants deal with this?

    I'd love to hear suggestions.



    Hello edmundscott

    I don't think Syrul likes the Scarlet Brotherhood. She must not have a clergy in Greyhawk. She can, however, make contact with the clergy of Nerull in Greyhawk (both have the portfolio of Death). And enjoy the Cult of the Shriven Sickle, very well detailed in the City of Greyhawk. You may also be able to use elements from the Falcon series that I know less about.
    Jacques
    Grandmaster Greytalker

    Joined: Jul 09, 2003
    Posts: 1322
    From: Clarksville, TN

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    Tue Jul 12, 2022 1:19 pm  

    edmundscott wrote:
    ...Obviously, the nycadaemon is going to fail and be tortured into revealing what happened and then destroyed (probably?). I'd like to hear opinions on exactly what actions the goddess should take against the character...

    Would the goddess take direct action (in her person) against the character? (this would likely be subtle, given her nature)Or would she trust to her Oerthly servants to take care of this business? ...


    -I agree with Skech. She'd probably just to a Return to Sender. If she's curious as to what the whole "vengeance" thing was about, it probably wouldn't be hard for her to figure out what actually happened.

    edmundscott wrote:
    ...I've been running a campaign in Greyhawk for almost forty years, but I bet the number of times Syrul's worshippers have been involved, ever, I could count on one hand. She doesn't seem to have any cult or organized presence in Greyhawk City, possibly worship amongst one or two of the Scarlet Brotherhood agents, but that's about it...


    -If before the conquest, Lendore Isle was full of Syrul worshippers (L4 & L5, and probably L2). If after, they'd still be in independent Restenford ("Hand of the Highwayman").

    I assume that the players think that Cyril has been disposed of. It should be amusing when they find out that he's alive and well...
    Evil Grin
    Apprentice Greytalker

    Joined: Mar 22, 2019
    Posts: 77


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    Fri Jul 15, 2022 4:20 pm  

    I'd have that particular PC receive a holy vision from Syrul, but he or she believes it to be the particular deity he or she worships. In it, Syrul promises a blessing and would the PC accept? Say it's like a +2 to saves or something.

    If accepted, it works as advertised until the worst possible moment at which point it turns into a -2. It should be enough to turn that successful save into a failed save. That's what messing with the goddess of Lies, Deceit, Treachery, and False Promises gets you.

    After this, she's made her point and has more important things to pay attention to.
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