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Rating: 4.5
Condition: Normal
ID: 99


November 20, 2005, 9:49 am

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Sushi anyone?


A siren has seduced a noble overboard and gifted him with watery breath. Now his family is preparing to go to war with the mer-people, blaming them for his kidnapping. They mer-people have beseeched the players to explain that the siren isn’t even one of thier people and help rescue the noble from the siren.

Problem is, the noble is now daddy.

On a peaceful ocean trip transporting cargo seven months ago, the noble Earl Mephis ignored the captain’s warnings to pulg his ears when sirens were spotted. “I’d sooner set her on the grill and squeeze some lemons over one of them than bed down with one of those fishy floozies.” were his last words above the waves. All thought he had perished untill recently when he was spotted by a albacore diver. The person spotted was presumed to be Earl Mephis, after all, how many men in noble dress does one see walking on the ocean floor?

Now the Earl’s family is theatening the mer-people who live in the waters where the Earl was spotted, demanding his release. The mer-people were quite surprised to learn that they had kidnapped him. Being the decent people they are, they avoid the sirens as much as land dwellers do nymphs and dryads, as the mer-people are no more immune to their songs than the land dwellers. The mer-people have asked for help from the local ports, but haven’t been able to find any sailors willing to sink deep beneath the waves with no sure way to get back.

The players are approached by a desperate mer-man with a proposal. He will supply them with a special seaweed that will allow them to breath underwater if they rescue the Earl. If the players succeed, they will have the gratitude of the mer-people and a nice chunk of treasure to boot.

Provided they agree and head off to rescue the Earl, they will even be led to the siren’s abode (lair) by a guide, a guide that swiftly departs after pointing the way. If the players enter, they will easily spot the Earl sleeping on a kelp bed with his back to them.

When they try to rouse him, they are in for a shock. As he turns around, they can see his shirt is open to allow room for his distended belly. Four fish tailed infants are visible in the translucent membrane that has formed on his abdomen. When questioned, the Earl is quite lucid and not the mindless thrall most charmed victims become. He explains that he has decided the land dwellers world hold little to delight him and he wishes to raise a family here with Aria, the siren. Sirens, like seahorses, have the males birth the young. If the Earl leaves the waters now, his children will be born two months premature with little hope of survival.

While the players are contemplating infantcide vrs genocide (didn’t forget the mer-people did you?), the siren comes home and is blocked from slaying the players by the Earl interposing his body in her way. After an heated argument, they look to the players for a solution that will spare the mer-people and thier own children.

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Comments ( 6 )
Commenters gain extra XP from Author votes.

January 21, 2004, 20:51
Hmmm...not bad. Assuming the adventurers don't urge the noble to kill his children, the next struggle would probably be against the merfolk! I mean, even if they understand why the adventurers don't take action, they will still want to preserve their own lives and the lives of their families by returning the man.
Dragon Lord
February 28, 2005, 10:16
Hmmm - interesting

I quite like this - there are no obvious "bad guys", nor are there any obvious "good guys", leaving quite a knotty moral dilemma

Might work better if all the protagonists were human but from different cultural groups - PCs could conceivably make assumptions based on the main protagonist being a siren, oversimplifying the matter in the process (there again they might do the same with different human cultures, so this may no be entirely fair - depends on your players I suppose)

I good solid 4 but I'm going to upgrade it to 5 because I like the moral dilemma

March 4, 2005, 12:30
Wow, this is a wonderful plot idea-- I love how all the characters have their own, original motives other than simple gain. :-) I also love the 'infantcide vrs genocide' dilemma-- that adds a whole new dimension to it. ^_^ 5/5!
May 24, 2005, 22:24
So I ran this on my playtesters, a group of local yokels working on my 6th world game, and they came up with a different solution than I had ever imagined.

Players: "Prince is now a daddy? Babies will die if he leaves water? But King will kill merpeople if he doesn't?"

Me: "yup"

Players: "Let's go kill the king! Prince can play house and no one will kill the merpeople!"

It actually ended up that they convinced the king the siren was basically the queen of the waters so his son was forming an alliance...
May 25, 2005, 9:39
There is always X+1 ways to do something. The X number of ways you plan for things to happen and the way the players decide to do it.

Darn those players.
Voted valadaar
June 24, 2011, 11:47

This is nifty - and the playtest results are great!



Random Idea Seed View All Idea Seeds

Which way is he going?

       By: Murometz

Molk Peruda is encountered by the PCs on the second day of their journey west from the salt-choked port of Quyn, as they prepare to explore the jungle.

He appears a gaunt, wolfish man, with matted, dark hair that sprouts from his head in dreadlocks, contrasting with his well-oiled, blue-black, conical beard. His eyes are hidden ebon shards beneath thick arching brows, his nose, crooked, long, and reminiscent of a snout. His mouth is a thin, dark line, his teeth unseen even when he parts his lips to speak.

His skin is the color of tallow, surprising perhaps for a renowned jungle guide, yet his natural helm of dreads and the jungle's canopy keeps the sun from bronzing his originally pale flesh. On his back are tattooed three women from the waist up, side-by-side, each resembling the other but of different ages. This is a tattoo of Molk's mother, sister, and daughter. His wife (don't bring her up to him!) was killed by marauding Qullan years ago, and appears as her own tattoo on his broad but sunken chest.

His feet shockingly are turned around 180 degrees at the ankle, facing towards his back! A curse from a pernicious shaman. Molk walks feet backwards (he's used to it) and walks backwards, forwards. This can be very disconcerting and outright creepy to the PCs as he guides them through the rainforest.

Slung from his back is an archer's quarrel of treated wood carved to resemble a stalking leopard, in his hand a re-curved composite bow of horn and sinew, with a pair of vivid, red eyes, each one painted on the opposite side of the hand-grip. In a leather sheath at his belt, hangs a falchion, its pommel adorned with a curved bird's head and beak.

Encounter  ( Forest/ Jungle ) | January 15, 2014 | View | UpVote 8xp

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