Entry number 1:
Originally Posted by Duran Mublen
Duran Mublen, Vol's Apothecary
LE Male Human Paladin of Tyranny 2/Urban Ranger 1/Cancer Mage 7/Thief of Life 10
Spoiler: Ability scoresShow1st-level:
Ability score improvements go to strength, except for the 20th-level improvement, which is instead used for intelligence.
Ability scores at level 20 (before magic items):
Spoiler: The BuildShow
Level Class Base Attack Bonus Fort Save Ref Save Will Save Skills Feats Class Features 1st Paladin of Tyranny 1 +1 +2 +0 +0 Craft (Poisonmaking) 2, Heal 4, Hide 1, Knowledge (nature) 2, Knowledge (religion) 2, Move Silently 2, Profession (Apothecary) 2 Great Fortitude, Azure Toughness Aura of Evil, Detect Good, Smite Good 2nd Paladin of Tyranny 2 +2 +3 +0 +0 Craft (Poisonmaking) 3, Heal 5, Hide 2, Profession (Apothecary) 3 - Divine Grace, Deadly Touch 3rd Urban Ranger 1 +3 +5 +2 +0 Hide 6, Move Silently 6, Gather Information 1 Poison Immunity, Urban Tracking (B) Favored Enemy (Church of the Silver Flame), Urban Tracking, Wild Empathy 4th Cancer Mage 1 +3 +7 +2 +0 Craft (Poisonmaking) 6, Heal 7, Profession (Apothecary) 6, Gather Information 2 - Sneak Attack +1d6, Disease Host 5th Cancer Mage 2 +4 +8 +2 +0 Craft (Poisonmaking) 8, Hide 7, Knowledge (Arcana) 2, Move Silently 7, Profession (Apothecary) 7 - Contagion, Cancerous Companion 6th Cancer Mage 3 +5 +8 +3 +1 Craft (Poisonmaking) 9, Heal 8, Hide 8, Knowledge (Arcana) 4, Move Silently 8, Profession (Apothecary) 7 Master of Poisons Tatterdemalion, Poison 7th Cancer Mage 4 +6/+1 +9 +3 +1 Craft (Poisonmaking) 10, Heal 10, Hide 10, Move Silently 10, Profession (Apothecary) 9 - Children of the Night 8th Cancer Mage 5 +6/+1 +9 +3 +1 Craft (Poisonmaking) 11, Heal 11, Hide 11, Move Silently 11, Profession (Apothecary) 11, Gather Information 5 - Sneak Attack +2d6, Viral Agent 9th Cancer Mage 6 +7/+2 +10 +4 +2 Craft (Poisonmaking) 12, Heal 12, Hide 12, Move Silently 12, Profession (Apothecary) 12, Gather Information 9 Staggering Strike Infect Wound 10th Cancer Mage 7 +8/+3 +10 +4 +2 Craft (Poisonmaking) 13, Heal 13, Hide 13, Move Silently 13, Profession (Apothecary) 13, Gather Information 12 - Insect Plague, Insect Armor 11th Thief of Life 1 +8/+3 +12 +6 +2 Craft (Poisonmaking) 14, Heal 14, Hide 14, Move Silently 14, Profession (Apothecary) 14, Gather Information 14, Use Magic Device 2 - Lifesense (5 ft.) 12th Thief of Life 2 +9/+4 +13 +7 +2 Craft (Poisonmaking) 15, Heal 15, Hide 15, Move Silently 15, Profession (Apothecary) 15, Gather Information 15, Use Magic Device 5 Darkstalker Sneak Attack +3d6 13th Thief of Life 3 +10/+5 +13 +7 +3 Craft (Poisonmaking) 16, Heal 16, Hide 16, Move Silently 16, Profession (Apothecary) 16, Gather Information 16, Use Magic Device 8 - Lifesense (10 ft.) 14th Thief of Life 4 +11/+6/+1 +14 +8 +3 Craft (Poisonmaking) 17, Heal 17, Hide 17, Move Silently 17, Profession (Apothecary) 17, Gather Information 17, Use Magic Device 11 - Borrow Vigor 15th Thief of Life 5 +11/+6/+1 +14 +8 +3 Craft (Poisonmaking) 18, Heal 18, Hide 18, Move Silently 18, Profession (Apothecary) 18, Gather Information 18, Use Magic Device 14 Martial Study (Cloak of Deception) Immunity to Fear, Lifesense (15 ft.) 16th Thief of Life 6 +12/+7/+2 +15 +9 +4 Craft (Poisonmaking) 19, Heal 19, Hide 19, Move Silently 19, Profession (Apothecary) 19, Gather Information 19, Use Magic Device 17 - Sneak Attack +4d6 17th Thief of Life 7 +13/+8/+3 +15 +9 +4 Craft (Poisonmaking) 20, Heal 20, Hide 20, Move Silently 20, Profession (Apothecary) 20, Gather Information 20, Use Magic Device 20 - Immunity to Energy Drain, Lifesense (20 ft.) 18th Thief of Life 8 +14/+9/+4 +16 +10 +4 Craft (Poisonmaking) 21, Heal 21, Hide 21, Move Silently 21, Profession (Apothecary) 21, Gather Information 21, Use Magic Device 21, Concentration 2 Cerulean Will Steal Vitality 19th Thief of Life 9 +14/+9/+4 +16 +10 +5 Craft (Poisonmaking) 22, Heal 22, Hide 22, Move Silently 22, Profession (Apothecary) 22, Gather Information 22, Use Magic Device 22, Concentration 4 - Immunity to death effects, Lifesense (25 ft.) 20th Thief of Life 10 +15/+10/+5 +17 +11 +5 Craft (Poisonmaking) 23, Heal 23, Hide 23, Move Silently 23, Profession (Apothecary) 23, Gather Information 23, Use Magic Device 23, Concentration 6 - Sneak Attack +5d6, Steal Immortality
Spoiler: The Divinity WithinShowCancerous Companion
Can communicate telepathically with Duran.
30 ft. blindsight
Can use a spell or spell-like ability of Duran four times per day.
Grants Duran Evasion.
Grants Duran Uncanny Dodge.
Mind-affecting spells and abilities have a 50% chance of affecting the Divinity Within instead of Duran.
Spoiler: StoryShowSpoiler: PrologueShowDuran hadn't always been the person he is today. Long ago, he was just an ordinary village doctor in some remote part of Thrane. He was young, eager, and above all: ambitious.
One day, a group of humans dressed in black and purple visited his hometown. They made camp just outside the village, and started to educate all who visited them. They educated in life, in death, in the transition between those two; even in the nature of undeath.
Duran was interested in them. Life and death were things he was often confronted with, and too often did his simple medicines lack the power to prevent the second. And so, he started to attend the travelers' sermons. And one day, when they were preparing to leave, Duran declared he would join them.
And so, Duran became a member of this strange religion, called the Blood of Vol. He learned of life and death, but also to channel his inner power. Over time, he became a capable warrior, though not one who had forgotten his origins as a healer.
Then, one day, they were destroyed. Duran still wasn't sure why, but a group of warriors with the Silver Flame's emblems on their shields attacked out of nowhere, killed most of his friends, and set fire to their books. Duran managed to crawl to safety after taking a morningstar to the head.
He fled. First by foot, then by horse, and finally he reached Sigilstar. There, he bought a lightning rail ticket to Sharn, certain that there he could live without fear of the Silver Flame.
The long ride in the stuffy, dark carriage was one of the worst moments of his life. Time after time did he remember the carnage, the blood, the holy blood spilled... But he did remember something else. During the battle, he had Observed the assailants... and found they all carried a disease.
After arriving in Sharn, Duran created a small shop in herbal medicine on the city's lower levels. From time to time, he would employ his herbalistic talents for less legal purposes; selling poison to street gangs and other such people. It made for a nice source of income.
It also helped him cure the disease.
Spoiler: Level 1-3ShowDuran Observed how the woman entered. The disease clung to her like cobwebs clinging to an old rotten chair. An apt comparison, Duran realized. While some might suggest trying to dust off the webs, any sensible person would just burn the chair and buy a new one.
The woman requested something against headaches. Duran glanced at the small bowls of ointment hidden behind the counter, took one, and gave it to the woman. He accepted the woman's silver, and watched her leave.
Duran smiled. The bowl did, in fact, contain headache medicine. What the woman didn't know was that it also contained a very effective medicine against her true disease.
It was called arsenic.
Spoiler: Level 4ShowDuran groaned. How did this go wrong? He'd been mashing up roaches when his finger had slipped. It had been an experimental poison; one that contained both common venom and disease.
Now, he was lying in his bed, too sick to move. Staring at the ceiling, Duran wondered if he was going to die. He feared death. Spending eternity fading away in Dolurhh was a fate he did not desire, did not deserve.
Duran meditated. If only he was strong enough... if only his blood would expel this sickness... If only the Divinity Within...
Duran slipped back into unconsciousness. When he woke up, he was amazed to discover the disease had all but faded. Grateful, he thanked his own Divinity Within.
To his surprise, it spoke back.
Spoiler: Level 5-10ShowDuran looked at the tower. For days now had he investigated it. He had Observed every resident and singled out the diseased ones. He had send spies inside, disguised as common illnesses, to further learn the tower's layout.
Now, he called out to the darkness. Twenty rats of unusual size and ferocity appeared, waiting for him to command them. Duran pointed out where the diseased lived, and watched the rats split up and climb towards their first targets.
Duran smiled, and talked to the Divinity Within. It praised him.
As the first screams of the diseased started to die away, Duran left. The locusts below his heavy cloak stirred for a moment before calming down again.
Spoiler: Level 11-15ShowDuran watched the man enter the alley. For three hours now had he been stalking him, waiting for a good opportunity.
Once again, Duran Observed him. The disease was very strong in this man; but that could be expected for a servant of that accursed Flame. Duran quickly averted his eyes. He didn't want to have to look at the plague too much; it made him feel sick. Feeling his agitation, the bugs that crawled beneath his cloak stirred for a moment.
Duran touched his longsword for a moment, then entered the alley. The Divinity Within stirred, and he touched the tumor in an attempt to calm it. The thief of life approached the man quickly, and for a moment vanished completely. The man, having heard something, turned, and raised an eyebrow as he saw nothing behind him.
Duran never gave the man the chance to respond to him. A swing, another, and another, and the man was already groaning in pain. Another swing and the man was dead.
Duran smiled as another of the diseased was cured. He breathed deeply, and felt the man's soul empower him. The Divinity Within trembled in joy, and Duran stroked it slowly before leaving.
Spoiler: Level 16-20ShowDuran plunged the sword into the paladin, and gasped. The soul... stronger than anything he had ever found, yet also diseased... It was almost overwhelming. With the combined will of him and the Divinity Within, he barely managed to consume it.
And a world opened up to Duran.
He was no more apothecary. He was no rank-and-file soldier of the Blood of Vol. He was no poisoner. He was no simple killer, no master of disease, no thief of life, nor had he ever been any of those things.
He was eternal. He was beyond human needs. He felt like going without food for a month, just to see what it was like, and surviving it.
He was the Bringer of Death.
And he was coming to cure this city.
Spoiler: Level breakdownShowSpoiler: Level 1ShowDuran is just your typical paladin of tyranny at this level, except for his odd skill choices. Azure toughness represents his minor skill with manipulating souls, and together with his 12 hit points and armor proficiencies should keep him going throughout the day.
Duran Detects Good often and dislikes letting those who detect positively live, believing the very idea of 'goodness' to be a threat to developing the Divinity Within.
Spoiler: Level 5ShowDuran has taken a level in urban ranger, has a nice bonus on all saving throws, and can track people through cities. He's also immune to Giant Roach Paste.
Things get really interesting when he starts taking levels in cancer mage. Sneak attack is nice, and combined with his hide and move silently scores lets him deal some extra damage in that surprise round, and the cancerous companion gives some pretty fun bonuses.
Blindsight is always nice, and the ability to channel spell-like abilities can help Duran determine if a foe he is fighting is Good, or just functions as a way to get free debuffs.
Spoiler: Level 10ShowBy this time, Duran has finished his cancer mage career. His plate armor has been exchanged for a healer's tattered robes with crawling insects beneath.
He's also gained some very nice abilities the past five levels. Viral Agent has its uses, and Children of the Night lets him play vampire and create a few dozen disposable scouts. Speaking about summons, he can also call some locust swarms once per day, though their lack of movement means they'll not be used much. During downtime, you can craft some poison or maintain your guise as apothecary.
In spite of those abilities, Duran is still a frontline fighter. His BAB is two points behind a fighter of this level, he can apply sneak attack to both attacks, and let's not forget staggering strike, which is just nasty. Oh, and there's Infect Wound, which has a rarely seen secondary effect but a primary effect that's decent in itself (no-save constitution damage aw yeaaaaaah).
Spoiler: Level 15ShowDarkstalker is picked up, as is Martial Study. Cloak of Deception basically equals a free round of sneak attack.
Speaking about sneak attack, Thief of Life adds some. You also get Lifesense, which is very useful against other Darkstalkers, immunity to fear (good to have) and the ability to steal bits of other creature's souls and use them for a few temporary HP. Use Magic Device ranks let you use any magic items looted from foes.
Spoiler: Level 20ShowThe capstone of Thief of Life: free immortality as long as you kill one 20 HD creature per year. This should be trivial for an adventurer.
You also gain more sneak attack and two useful immunities. Additionally, you can shore up your poor Will by investing Incarnum in it.
At this point, Duran is more-or-less immortal and can constantly fight to eliminate all Good. He tries to get the drop on any of his victims, sneak attacking through flanking, surprise, and Cloak of Deception. His weapon are probably poisoned, and the Divinity Within will try to get off a few Poison or Contagion spells as well. Staggering Strike prevents the target from getting a full attack off.
Spoiler: Alignment and CoCShowDuran is Lawful Evil. His sheer hate of Good prevents any non-evil alignment, and his dedication to eliminating only a certain group of people and lack of interest in random slaughter or plunder is definitely Lawful.
The paladin of tyranny's code of conduct is the following:
As stated before, Duran is LE. He won't be committing good acts. Selling medicine to others isn't Good but Neutral, as it is done out of greed rather than altruism.A paladin of tyranny must be of lawful evil alignment and loses all class abilities if he ever willingly commits a good act. Additionally, a paladin of tyranny's code requires that he respect authority figures as long as they have the strength to rule over the weak, act with discipline (not engaging in random slaughter, keeping firm control over those beneath his station, and so forth), help only those who help him maintain or improve his status, and punish those who challenge authority (unless, of course, such challengers prove more worthy to hold that authority).
Duran respects authority, acts with discipline (his slaughter isn't random), helps only those who help him maintain his status (in this case, his status of a respectable apothecary) and punishes those who challenge authority (in this case, the authority of the Blood of Vol).
Spoiler: AdventuringShowDuran is not a character that fits in with standard parties. His sheer hate of Good should make that clear. In anti-Good parties, however, he can easy work.
In-combat, Duran is a frontline fighter who can hopefully sneak attack with the help of a flanking partner. His AC is respectable, his Fortitude save is through the roof, Reflex is good (just below a 20th-level rogue's reflex) and Will is low but improved through Cerulean Will.
Out-of-combat, Duran can craft poison, scout and send diseases to weaken enemies.