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  1. - Top - End - #1
    Ogre in the Playground
     
    DwarfClericGuy

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    Default Trying to write myself out of a corner. Need opinions.

    Alright, I've been DMing a campaign for a while which is heavily doused in conspiracy and social events and I'm not sure what direction to take at this point. I have two options, so I just need opinions, not ideas (although they're welcome if you want to give them).

    My Paladin has just caught an assassin spying on her and confronted the assassin in a public way which prevents said assassin from simply bolting. The paladin noticed the assassin never took a shot at her even though there was plenty of opportunity. This is sort of a plot hole on my part (as the group the assassin is part of has no problem with attacking in public before this and the Assassin has a Heavy Crossbow for range) but I've decided to run with it.

    To sum up the events which lead to this quickly:
    - Paladin is attacked at home by a group of thugs while detective is visiting. This group is a group the Paladin has some experience with. Group is specifically targetting the Paladin.
    - Paladin, detective and some party members fight off thugs while snipers (the assassin) fire from outside. Assassin never fires at Paladin but does fire at detective.
    - Paladin figures out where a secret hideout of the group is by interrogating a cronie, she tells detective about this and goes off with some party members, leaving detective alone.
    - En-route to secret hideout the Paladin & co spy Assassin following them via rooftops and try to lure the Assassin out. They almost succeed but fail a crucial stealth roll so the Assassin gets near them, sees them and runs. Paladin decides not to give chase.
    - Paladin arrives near secret hide out and sits in a cafe to watch. Assassin catches up to Paladin at this point and spies on her in the same cafe.
    - Detective shows up (following the instructions the Paladin gave him above) and meets the Paladin in the cafe, not expecting her to be there. Detective points out Assassin to Paladin.
    - Detective and Paladin devise a plan to sneak into secret hideout and Detective leaves the cafe to start the plan, Paladin is supposed to leave 5 minutes later.
    - Paladin confronts Assassin at her table and interrogates her calmly.

    Anyways, my four current options here are:

    1) The Assassin was payed off by a detective npc the Paladin consorts with to cover the Paladin's ass in secret. The detective in question is currently referred to as a conspiracy theorist by his co-workers as he's constantly suspicious of people and has a lot of craaaazy theories. In this case he's looking to engineer a conspiracy just to finally be right. The Paladin doesn't know any of this however and there are plot holes I can easily see (like why not simply tell the Paladin about the assassin in the first place?)

    2) Same as the above but the Detective has sinister motives instead. I can figure those details out later but the major problem here is the Paladin has been backstabbed very recently as it is, so I fear this may seem too cliche and will start getting tiring.

    3) The Assassin, although ordered to kill the Paladin, has an agenda of her own. She wants the Paladin to succeed because she now disagrees with the group she works for but can't escape. Thing is, why use the Paladin (when the group in question has much more powerful enemies) and why not reveal yourself to the Paladin immediately (the Paladin has had to interrogate the Assassin quite a bit to get this far)?

    4) The Assassin has been paid off by another group to keep the Paladin alive for reasons unknown. Possibly by the enemies of the first group. Problem here is, once again, why not tell the Paladin about her protection?

  2. - Top - End - #2
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    Bearpunch's Avatar

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    Default Re: Trying to write myself out of a corner. Need opinions.

    Quote Originally Posted by Sipex View Post


    3) The Assassin, although ordered to kill the Paladin, has an agenda of her own. She wants the Paladin to succeed because she now disagrees with the group she works for but can't escape. Thing is, why use the Paladin (when the group in question has much more powerful enemies) and why not reveal yourself to the Paladin immediately (the Paladin has had to interrogate the Assassin quite a bit to get this far)?
    That assassin couldnt simply come out about it because the Assassin has been caught trying to defect before, and another assassin was sent to watch. Since Assassin has now been caught by Paladin, she is forced to talk. However, this opens the door to another adversary (Assassin2). Assassin used the paladin because the plan Assassin has requires a small amount of people, or she has made enemies with the other groups and the Paladin is her last chance.
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  3. - Top - End - #3
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    DwarfClericGuy

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    Default Re: Trying to write myself out of a corner. Need opinions.

    Wow, I didn't see that route. I knew I just needed a different view of things.

    Thanks a lot!

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    hamishspence's Avatar

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    Default Re: Trying to write myself out of a corner. Need opinions.

    OOTS reason- assassin is attracted to protagonist:

    http://www.giantitp.com/comics/oots0503.html
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  5. - Top - End - #5
    Titan in the Playground
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    Default Re: Trying to write myself out of a corner. Need opinions.

    Alternatively, the assassin is using the Paladin as in situation 3, however -
    A) She has selected the Paladin because she was raised in the same faith as the paladin. She has not openly contacted the Paladin out of religious guilt, as she has not lived her life by the tenants of the Paladin's faith, but has come to regret her choices.

    B) She has faith in the Paladin's ability to get things done, partially because they were childhood friends. This also makes the Assassin unwilling to reveal herself, as she is ashamed of having ended up as an Assassin.

    A and B are not mutually exclusive, of course, and I can very much see the Assassin having been trained as an acolyte alongside the Paladin, but perhaps failed and/or was outcast for something she did?

  6. - Top - End - #6
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    DwarfClericGuy

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    Default Re: Trying to write myself out of a corner. Need opinions.

    Interesting routes to expand upon, I'll have to check with the Paladin's player to see what she's okay with me taking liberties for but I like it.

    Thanks for the input everyone!

  7. - Top - End - #7
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    Conners's Avatar

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    Default Re: Trying to write myself out of a corner. Need opinions.

    hamishspence, I was going to suggest that ....

    That one could be particularly funny, if played right (it sounded like they were both female... which could have a good deal of humour at the awkwardness of the situation).
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    Bearpunch's Avatar

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    Default Re: Trying to write myself out of a corner. Need opinions.

    Quote Originally Posted by Sipex View Post
    Wow, I didn't see that route. I knew I just needed a different view of things.

    Thanks a lot!
    No problem. Alternatively:

    THe detective literally wants to create a kooky conspiracy. Therefore he has hired the Assassin to attempt to kill Paladin. D, however, knows the P far outmatches A, so D is counting on P to capture A. From there, D has a well crafted conspiracy to unleash on the public, though it may be lies. By this forced conspiracy, D will finally be right, and it might even spark a real conflict between Paldins of [god] and the Assassins employer.

    TL;DR
    The Detective hires the Assassin to create conspiracy. By capturing the Assassin, Paladin has played directly into Paladins hands.
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  9. - Top - End - #9
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    QuidEst's Avatar

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    Default Re: Trying to write myself out of a corner. Need opinions.

    Hmm… another option comes to mind. The Assassin has had this assignment (killing the Paladin) for some time, and was waiting for the opportune moment. Before it arrived, however, a loved family member of your choice fell seriously ill. This would be no problem- the Assassin is wealthy, and can simply pay for a good healer, which she did. But when the cleric arrived, his healing had no effect. Assassin is convinced that her assignment has gotten her in big trouble with the Paladin's deity, and has been trying to avoid it. Unable to pull out or reveal herself, she had to go along and invent excuses for not taking the Paladin out. Her employers are getting suspicious, however, forcing her to take the only alternative: let herself be captured. She feigned ignorance at the cafe, as seeming prepared for it would make any sensible individual suspicious.

  10. - Top - End - #10

    Default Re: Trying to write myself out of a corner. Need opinions.

    Question: How does the paladin know that the assassin is indeed an assassin, and not just a garden-variety spy? Aside from taking potshots at the detective, I'm not seeing where this sneaky girl has done anything assassin-y.

    So in this situation, I'd have her tell all about her employer. (Whether or not she tells the truth being a completely separate matter.) Someone has reason to spy on the paladin. That's a plot hook for you.

  11. - Top - End - #11
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    BlackDragon

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    Default Re: Trying to write myself out of a corner. Need opinions.

    Quote Originally Posted by hamishspence View Post
    OOTS reason- assassin is attracted to protagonist:

    http://www.giantitp.com/comics/oots0503.html
    Dangit, I was going to suggest love at first sight. This works because the assassin is too embarrassed to talk about it.

    Oh, same gender though?

    THEY ARE SECRETLY SISTERS! (That's another option). Look different? Reincarnation. Maybe she's partially mind-wiped so she doesn't actually understand why she held back.
    Last edited by Drachasor; 2011-08-31 at 06:11 PM.

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    randomhero00's Avatar

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    Default Re: Trying to write myself out of a corner. Need opinions.

    Assassin1 is trying to be gotten rid of by her/his own guild. She/he sucks (or has been nearly convicted) and they are trying to set him/her up for failure. ...in other words replace assassin with a conspiracy.

    In other words very similar to post2, but instead of defecting/hoping they succeed the assassin is just trying to maneuver himself away from being setup/put to death. Even if it means the paladin's group succeding.
    Last edited by randomhero00; 2011-08-31 at 06:18 PM.
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  13. - Top - End - #13
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    AssassinGuy

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    Default Re: Trying to write myself out of a corner. Need opinions.

    I like reason 3, and have a reason to use the paladin. Basically the assassin has harmed the other more powerful enemies before, and is thus reluctant to contact them. The ones she hasn't wronged, (such as law enforcement) are corrupt, and can be bought out. Basically she has chosen the paladin specifically because he is a paladin. He can't be corrupt, feels no fear, and has alignment restrictions that force him to destroy the group the assassin works for. She took shots at the detective to wound him, so that the paladin would actually heal him. She needed to be sure that the paladin hadn't fallen, as she is risking her life on this plan, and healing a wound would be a perfect way to make sure the paladin still has his powers.
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  14. - Top - End - #14
    Titan in the Playground
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    Default Re: Trying to write myself out of a corner. Need opinions.

    Quote Originally Posted by hydroplatypus View Post
    I like reason 3, and have a reason to use the paladin. Basically the assassin has harmed the other more powerful enemies before, and is thus reluctant to contact them. The ones she hasn't wronged, (such as law enforcement) are corrupt, and can be bought out. Basically she has chosen the paladin specifically because he is a paladin. He can't be corrupt, feels no fear, and has alignment restrictions that force him to destroy the group the assassin works for. She took shots at the detective to wound him, so that the paladin would actually heal him. She needed to be sure that the paladin hadn't fallen, as she is risking her life on this plan, and healing a wound would be a perfect way to make sure the paladin still has his powers.
    This isn't bad at all.

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    Just_Ice's Avatar

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    Default Re: Trying to write myself out of a corner. Need opinions.

    5. Crossbow jammed at a crucial moment.

    It's a bad excuse, but stuff happens.
    Last edited by Just_Ice; 2011-09-01 at 12:31 PM.
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    Default Re: Trying to write myself out of a corner. Need opinions.

    Quote Originally Posted by Sipex View Post
    3) The Assassin, although ordered to kill the Paladin, has an agenda of her own. She wants the Paladin to succeed because she now disagrees with the group she works for but can't escape. Thing is, why use the Paladin (when the group in question has much more powerful enemies) and why not reveal yourself to the Paladin immediately (the Paladin has had to interrogate the Assassin quite a bit to get this far)?
    The assassin wanted to be 'caught' by the paladin, rather than offer help. Why?

    Her employer has powerful scrying at his disposal, along with sending minions along to ensure the deed was done. She had to get caught but make it look good. The cronies she could sacrifice because she had no attatchment to them from the start, and odds are they would have killed her anyway.

    So she sets up up an elaborate ambush, good enough to fool her boss and these mooks. The mooks get mostly killed in the process, she gets caught.

    Why she hasn't come clean on the matter? Easy explanation. She's been Gaesed (sp?) into not being able to talk about it. The Gaes never prevented her from acting though. It's a fairly standard practice (in most games I've been in) to employ Gaes's, blood contracts, or powerful binding oaths/vows to keep assassins from discussing their contracts.

    Suggestion: Sidequest to remove the Gaes, get more info, go after real culprit.
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  17. - Top - End - #17
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    GreataxeFighterGuy

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    Default Re: Trying to write myself out of a corner. Need opinions.

    Assassin doesn't know exactly who is paying her to protect the Paladin, or why, and isn't inclined to look into the matter. She certainly doesn't want the Paladin looking into it.

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