Zombie Murder Mystery

Promises, Oathes And Pacts

Written by Scott - Published on February 1, 2010

Some Strings Attached

A pact can be a very powerful tool for adventurers, however the empowering agreement does not always have to arranged through the blood contracts of demons or the riddled words of dragons, for a Warlock or any adventurer to benefit from them. Awhile ago there was a great article about ‘Star Pacts’ in Dragon Magazine and below are the outlines for several more pact possibilities for Warlocks and any other character class.

Conclave Of Blood

To agree to something in blood is a very powerful and ancient agreement, with the right rituals a pact between two or more people when sealed with blood can empower all parties exponentially. Witch Covens and Hags will often insight the blood pact to connect their powers and mentalities, assuring fealty to the coven and greater power.

A secret sect of monks also employs the use of a Blood Pact ritual to empower all members of the martial order. Any monk that proves worthy through his enlightened studies enters into the fold of the Darah Elegit or Chosen Blood. Through a sacred ritual the monk bleeds into a relic in which all others have bleed before him. Each member of the Darah Elegit gains the power and strength of all other members combined. Making the monks of this sacred ritual extremely skilled and powerful warriors.

Kadahan was a member of the monastery who was found to be lacking in morale fortitude and was banished from the sacred temple, but not before he stole the rights and rituals needed to enact the blood ritual for himself, only with some slight adjustments. The deranged exile has altered the pact to feed only him and drain all power and life from those that bleed within the circle of his ritual. As Kadahan becomes more powerful he kidnaps more powerful people and warriors only furthering his ever-growing power.

Curse Of Revenge

When tragedy befalls the young and innocent or families are torn apart through the evil deeds of monsters or murderers it is common that any left alive swear vengeance upon those that wronged them. In some rare cases or people that have an innate magical presence such as Sorcerers, this promise of revenge acts as a pact to the Ether or Fates. Whilst seeking revenge and hunting their adversaries, people who have instilled the revenge pact upon themselves find their abilities heightened and an continuously mounting rage. As they continue upon the path of revenge, they only grow stronger the more they enact their justice upon anything that can hold a slither of connection to those responsible, the growing rage can take over reason and rational thought often causing them to commit atrocities of their own in their pursuit for revenge. If their revenge is completed within the belief of the pact bearer, than all gained powers and rage fade away, leaving them to deal with the atrocities and crimes they committed in order to achieve their own justice.

The barbarian, Herdran watched his entire tribe slaughtered by orcs whilst still a teen. Being the sole survivor he cried murderous vengeance to night sky, a sky thick with Ether. With the pact in place he began to hunt the orcs responsible, his rage being fuelled by the growing bloodlust as he tracked down the horde of orcs. Once he finished the orcs responsible he felt hollow and unfulfilled and whilst orcs roamed free his vengeance was not complete. For many years Herdran has hunted orcs relentlessly, his pact intensifying with every orc he slays. Recently his search for vengeance has encompassed all sentient beings. In his rage filled mind, the armies and kingdoms of the land did nothing to save his people and do nothing to stop the orc threat, for this crime they are just as responsible for the deaths of his tribe as any orc. Now Herdran slaughters whole villagers and farms to sate his blood lust of revenge.

Code Of Honour

Many warriors, swordsman and knights adhere to a code of honour. There are knightly orders and sacred martial codes that require their code of honour to be a sworn fealty. Relics, rituals and other forms of magic can be used to apply an Honour pact. Whilst a member of the strict honour codes adheres to them completely, his powers and abilities grow over time. Whenever a worthy opponent is defeated in even combat, the power of the honour pact instils large gifts of power upon the victor. If the code of honour is ever broken or the warrior ever defeated, the pact is nullified and their abilities removed.

Tales speak of a master swordsman, who has for centuries wandered the planes for a worthy opponent to defeat him in combat. Known only as Meiyo Senshi, this master swordsman has existed for many lifetimes, kept alive through the power of his pact. Countless warriors have fallen to his blade, many of them spared the final blow, only to hear him utter the word ‘unworthy’ as he departed. The Meiyo Senshi is believed to have slain dragons, demons and entire armies with the power and skill of his blade alone. When he encounters warriors he believes to be worthy, a polite request for a duel is offered. Any that fall beneath his blade empower the ancient warrior more so, however he kills only those he believes to be truly honourable and worthy. If ever defeated in combat the Meiyo Senshi will pass peacefully after finally having found an opponent worthy enough to defeat him.

Nature’s Guardians

Mother Nature provides for all life and those that respect her and follower her ways often-lead fruitful and happy lives. Many people ignore the presence of nature and act harshly to the land they live upon. Druids, Shamans and Rangers understand the presence of nature to some extent, but those that learn to truly revere nature are often gifted by the earthly presence with the Guardian Pact. This gift from nature protects the user from untoward harm, avalanches, storms and earthquakes do not harm Guardians of Nature and very rarely occur in their vicinity. They can stand upon shores with titanous waves and never be swept to sea as the water flows around them gently. For this gift of protection the guardians will often seek to ensure natures balance and true place in the world, they will not receive healing magic and do not condone it’s use, as death is part of the natural cycle. Cities are eyesores and abominations upon the world. Some guardians even take actions to destroy cities and towns in an effort to let nature reclaim the scarred land. Most importantly, guardians will hunt down and execute any that commit a crime against nature.

An elven druid was once gifted with the pact of the Guardian, her reverence for nature so pure and true she protected an entire continent ensuring cities never scarred the land and all people treated the land with the respect it deserved. This Elven queen parted the world many millennia ago. Now upon her final resting place a sprawling human empire harvests the forests for lumber and hunts her treasured creatures for sport. Such atrocities have awoken the Guardian for her peace, her baleful spirit now guides the forest to fight back and reclaim the land for nature. Treants awaken from ancient trees and animals attack in unison to drive the invaders from the forest. People go missing from camps, to never be found again, while storms and earthquakes tear at the city constantly. Any that choose to face this angry guardian must find a way to either appease the spirit of the elf queen or combat all the forms of nature.

What do you use Pacts for? Can other classes harness the power of Pacts? Can a demonic Warlock really be Good? Let us know your thoughts and comments!

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Written by Scott

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5 Responses to “Promises, Oathes And Pacts”

Zombie Murder Mystery
  1. Noumenon Says:

    Countless warriors have fallen to his blade, many of them spared the final blow, only to hear him utter the word ‘unworthy’ as he departed.

    I want to be that character. Awesome.

  2. kocho Says:

    i personally would love to be a dm with the monk guy, he would be an impossibly fun villain to play, I can imagine it already:
    “Hey, try to kill me and I’ll drop an enlarged blood stone on a city!”
    now imagine facing him

  3. Ravenous Role Playing » Blog Archive » Friday Five: 2010-02-05 Says:

    […] Promises, Oathes And Pacts I love it when my players make an oath, take a pact or undertake a promise. It gives me some level of power of their characters that they have willingly (if not knowingly) given me. It allows for great adventure hooks, increased interaction between the PCs and NPCs of the game, and gives the PCs actions some meaning other than to do the typical adventurer trope. […]

  4. Wordworm: It’ll Eat Your Words : Guang Keshar Says:

    […] Promises, Oathes And Pacts (dungeonmastering.com) […]

  5. Darren Says:

    Can a demonic Warlock really be good?

    Yes. It’s happened to all of us, siding with an enemy to fight a third faction. Be it our characters or ourselves.

    I can imagine someone brokering a deal with a demon, and the demon being just as confused as the DM would be. It would be a sacrifice to serve the greater good. The good Warlock would use the powers, I dunno, to save an orphanage, (excuse the classic phrase) “no matter the cost.”

    It’s great to see these kinds of stereotypes broken. An evil paladin is another good example, as it’s a perfectly logical option… just badly viewed.

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