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 Paladins of Lathander code of conduct vs. spying!
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Ayrik
Great Reader

Canada
6399 Posts

Posted - 23 Sep 2017 :  16:00:56  Show Profile Send Ayrik a Private Message  Reply with Quote
Merlin and Vangey were never fully trusted by their Paladin-King masters. And, in some stories, they did indeed withhold information (lots of information) from their kings - especially information about what sorts of stuff they were doing - euphemistically because it would not be "understood" in proper context - practically because it sometimes involved actions and interactions of the most questionable, unsavoury, or vile nature.

[/Ayrik]
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sleyvas
Great Reader

USA
5983 Posts

Posted - 23 Sep 2017 :  23:25:32  Show Profile Send sleyvas a Private Message  Reply with Quote
bear in mind that a lot of "spy" networks are just getting someone who is already in place to simply tell you about things that are going on, and its usually as part of a simple bribery scenario of "contact me whenever you have news". So, the idea that people are going to catch your spies by magically scrying isn't very probable if the sources themselves are simple scullery maids, guards, butlers, warehouse workers, salesmen, prostitutes, etc....

Alavairthae, may your skill prevail

Phillip aka Sleyvas
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LordofBones
Senior Scribe

434 Posts

Posted - 02 Oct 2017 :  08:29:20  Show Profile Send LordofBones a Private Message  Reply with Quote
quote:
Originally posted by Ayrik

Ah, the King needn't worry overmuch about such stuff. If he does not appoint a spymaster then one will voluntarily fill the position for him.

Remember that King Arthur (the Paladin) also had Merlin, a shapechanging demon-spawned illusionist. Merlin served many useful roles. Including spymaster and assassin.



Arthur never struck me as a paladin. Galahad, on the other hand...

Lancelot might even be a fallen paladin; cheating on your wife and making her die of heartbreak by boinking your liege-lord's queen isn't exactly kosher among paladins.
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Ayrik
Great Reader

Canada
6399 Posts

Posted - 02 Oct 2017 :  09:13:41  Show Profile Send Ayrik a Private Message  Reply with Quote
Arthur and all his Knights Renown were classed as paladins in the 1E sourcebooks. A few were multiclassed paladin/fighters, allowed because of their quasi-divine-like "hero" status. I don't think they were ever given any stats in later edition sourcebooks, though I might be mistaken.

Not saying it's necessarily accurate, King Arthur in history could arguably be called a paladin or a fighter or a cleric or even a thief. Just reporting what the AD&D stats say.

[/Ayrik]
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Bladewind
Master of Realmslore

Netherlands
1189 Posts

Posted - 02 Oct 2017 :  19:22:12  Show Profile Send Bladewind a Private Message  Reply with Quote
There is evidence that most spymasters of the late medieval and renaissance eras were granted (or mistook their royals trust for a) carte-blanche and misused that for murder, blackmail and extortion in the name of the court both to increase their cut throat reputation and instill fear in the crowns enemies. These guys tend to get extremely fanatical in their devotion to 'serve the crown' and/or twist their newfound positions into a means to further a personal vendetta.

Queen Elizabeths the First's spymaster, the overtly zealous protestant secretary of state Francis Walsingham, used capital punishment on a princes of Scotland (Maria Stuart) and practically committed judicial murder by having her beheaded through his evidence for a conspiratorial plot of the queens rivals to have her take the throne. He was even rumored to have been responsible for the death of his own friends, having a thespian spy killed in a tavern in London after he badmouthed religion.

In the Realms unveiling plots of usurpation, heresy, assassination and treason requires a certain clarity of perspective and recognizing the ruthlessness with which the enemies of a crown will operate. Simple commoners adapt to such circumstances poorly and are rarely privvy to the things the crown wants to know in the first place. "Trusted" courtiers, be they diplomats, clerics, wizards or merchants, are far more likely to be able to obtain crucial intelligence and make that intell get back to the court without excruciating delay or diluting the message.

I think the Grandfather of Assassins, the leader of the secret Citadel of Assassins in the Galena Mountains, and grandmaster Kane, of the Order of the Yellow Rose, are good examples of spymasters without a 'crown' to serve, but who have perfected the art of spycraft to uncanny levels by their rivalry alone. Kane eventually found and bested the Grandfather after many years worth of gathering intelligence with his Spysong network of rangers, monks and bards.

My campaign sketches

Druidic Groves

Creature Feature: Giant Spiders
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