An item of religious worth is stolen from the church of Heavenly Sight. An Arch-Bishop, two servants, and three clergy were killed in the theft. But unknown by the thieves and the clergy, they stole a duplicate placed there by an unfaithful servant of the church.
It will emerge that the duplicate is, in fact, more powerful and blessed than the original. The one who made the copy is, it will turn out, the Chosen One, and creation of this religious symbol imbued it with power from a deity. The lack of faith seen by superiors appears as rebellion, was in fact due to a higher understanding of the articles of faith... the church has been making mistakes for decades. The "unfaithful" one has been driven away, and must be found as the answers to many question can be found with him.
The PCs are aided by three prominent clergymen, all but one with secret motives beyond that of their faith.
Clergyman 1) A young accolyte recently raised to the cloth. He has been found to have a very strong faith unusual for someone so young. He has already been seen to do powerful feats regarding faith, that while they are not miracles they are non-the-less important.
He has been instructed by his superiors to quietly moniter those looking for the lost item. He is to report to them anything he sees and gain the item when it is safe at all costs. Their god will forgive him for his trangressions should he need to stray from the path of their faith to obtain this item.
He is young, eager, and nieve. Normally very trusting, he is afraid that everyone he come into contact with knows of his instructions from his superiors and is worried they will find out his plans and stop him.
Clergyman 2) A aging man of many talents. His eyes are his only young and vibrant feature, his back bends and his legs and hands shake. He is known for his knowledge of religious artifacts and their use, abiities, and their histories. Among those present at the temple where the item was taken, he knows more about what it could be used for and who could possibly know about it and want the item. He slows the group down physically but his keen intellect and reasoning is a hope to lead them to the right direction faster. He also carries the knuckle bone of Saint Rhender, a well known Saint of the church for his faith and work with lost souls.
The lost item is desired by a local criminal organization whose leader is dying. According to his healers, only the power of the religious item can heal him. This of course is the assumption of the original item to be stolen. The criminal leader is afflicted with an evil disease which was placed upon him as a curse when he disturbed the tomb of the ancient Witch-Kings. It has been gnawing at him for years, but only now in it's terminal stages can he be cured.
Two of the three acolytes killed in the theft were brothers. Their father was a powerful patron of the church and in his maddened grief he constantly approach the PCs, making outrageous demands. His overtures include threats (if they do not hurry up, he will personally make sure the repercussions will be dire), promises (if they succeed he will be eternally grateful) and aid (in the form of equipment, hired help and... agents monitoring their progress).
If the PCs catch a bad guy, chances are the grief struck father will make an attempt at getting his vengeance, either through his hired goons or by doing it himself.
Could be fun/frustrating if he kills witnesses or wrongly accused individuals.
Secretly, the acolytes' father made his fortune in the same criminal business as the criminal leader, and they were old partners in crime. The criminal leader that has been afflicted with this disease blames the acolytes father for his condition as he feels it was at the hands of his Gods that caused him to become ill and sick. He has stolen this artifact and killed his sons as a means to get back at his old friend and to heal him of his illness.
The acolytes father however, has no clue it is his old friend who has done this and will be stricken with grief for his losses should he determine the truth. However, he has a duty to his patron to have the item returned and he has a duty as a father to avenge his children. Time and situation will tell which one he will choose. Go to Comment
The Crusader is highest at the beginning of the year. He is seen as a lone man, standing proud looking to the heavens. The Huntress can always be seen following him in the night sky, tracking his movements. During the later months of the year when the Dragon rises high the Crusader looks to the fallen beast with sadness. The myth is that the Crusader causes the fall rains begin because of his sorrow. It is said to be an omen of good character to be born under the sign of the Crusader being thoughtless and selfless to the point of ruin at times. Go to Comment
Seen as a bent crooked man, the Sage sits in sorrow at his never ending life. His knowledge is surpassed by only the gods but he weeps at his existence. Winter is ending when he is highest as he brings the warmth of spring away from the winter colds. Once every two decades a right star, actually a comet, lights up the Sages right eye. In that time the stories say that he can be found and asked a single question. However cryptic his answer may be, he still gives the answer true. To be born under this sign it to possess a unique knowledge and gift of the mind rarely forgetting what you have learned or heard. Go to Comment
The Oracle is a myth as much as the gods are. It is not known which came first the Oracle or the Gods. To ask that question one is answered with a series of confused tales of difference between animals related to the birth of suns. It is seen as a circle of eight red and yellow stars around a void of blackness. The Oracle is both truthful and devious in its own right. It knows no right and wrong, only that that when it speaks, mortals should listen. The Oracle never has a high point as it sits relatively in the same spot throughout the year; some say this is a testament to its unwavering nature. Many a sailor and captain will use the Oracle to guide their ships by, knowing that it will never lead them astray. Those born under this sign are usually aloof and seem a bit off. However they can spout wisdom when the time calls for it. Go to Comment
The King is highest during the summer months, ruling his kingdom over the pleasant times of the year. He is seen only as a crown in the sky, the top most star a jewel beyond brightness. His guidance for those on land have been wonderful, as his guiding light shines brightest over the desert lands bringing those who know to follow him safely home. Those born under this sign are usually gifted with a commanding demeanor and make good leaders. Go to Comment
Seen as a ship with furled sails, the Captain raises and lowers in the night sky as a ship on turbulent waters. When he is the highest the summer squalls hit the coastal waters and pour forth their nurturing drink to quench the thirst of the land. Any farmer knows to plant soon after the Captain rises as planting most crops before result in swamped land, losing most if not all of the harvest. Planting afterwards has been a boon to most coastal farmers however. Every sailor knows though not to follow the Captain to ofar as faithfully following him will lead to your doom broken on the rocks of some unknown shore. Anyone born the sign of the Captain is resourceful, yet often fail in their tasks, like crashing on the rocks of life. Go to Comment