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reorith
2007-04-02, 09:13 PM
another paladin question

whilst delving the tomb of horrors, our druid recently came across a mysterious gem. he was afraid to touch it, believing that it may have been cursed/evil etc. The paladin offered his services and retrieved it. he pocketed the gem, which turned out to be a gem of Wish, and when asked about it, he did not answer. he obviously wanted the gem for himself, and stole outright from our party, completely disregarding the party contract which he signed. should the lose his paladin-hood over this?

sorry our party has three paladins and uses the default alignment system. as a result we run into these obstacles fairly often.

semi-relevant information.
he is an lg paladin.
the druid was standing in an adjacent square
the thing glows.
after the dm whispered in the pally's ear, explaining the power of the gem, the druid asked "what do you have there?" and recieved a reply of "nothing"
the party charter states that loot is distributed first by party role, second by appraised value and third by the principle of hey who wants this?

Assassinfox
2007-04-02, 09:28 PM
I think he should lose paladinhood over this, but you'll probably get pantloads of people saying that he shouldn't lose paladinhood over it, and a bunch of people saying he should be rewarded for his trickery. :smallwink:

MinMax
2007-04-02, 09:31 PM
Three Paladins of Virtue? That's a recipe for disaster. Even two is pushing it. Anyways, I supposed motive is the only really relavent factor here. If the paladin was keeping to, for example, keep it out of the hands of those who would make frivolous or evil use of it, 4 stars. If the paladin was taking it to give to others deemed worthy, or perhaps more worthy of the possession, such as a church, then that's good too. For personal use, or for personal gain though, is not right, and in direction violation of the Paladin Code.

Additionally, though these alternatives may have been good, they weren't lawful, if a true contract had indeed been drafted dictating how treasure would be split up. This, despite intent for the reason, is the actual violation of the Paladin Code that is most glaring. Stealing to give to the poor, if I might offer an example, is not Lawful, and something a Paladin of Virtue would not consider without significant reason, but would probably still require atonement

The_Werebear
2007-04-02, 09:34 PM
I would say it is a direct violation. While the paladin is primarily good, stealing for a selfish reason and disregarding a legal contract that is not opressing anyone is a gross violation of the Code.

Aquillion
2007-04-02, 09:36 PM
Let's quote the code again!

Code of Conduct

A paladin must be of lawful good alignment and loses all class abilities if she ever willingly commits an evil act.

Additionally, a paladin’s code requires that she respect legitimate authority, act with honor (not lying, not cheating, not using poison, and so forth), help those in need (provided they do not use the help for evil or chaotic ends), and punish those who harm or threaten innocents.This was obviously a dishonorable act, so it was a code violation. A Paladin could fall for it, but doesn't have to. (Only a deliberate evil act requires that they fall immediately.)

At the very least, your DM should probably give them a hint that that was not a very Paladin-ish thing to do (the next time they pray for spells, they sense that their God disapproves of them or whatever.) The other Paladins in your party could also talk to him ICly if they know about it, or any Clerics of the same God if you have any. Personally, I'd say he's not fallen yet, but he's on a very, very bad path, and could be in trouble if he doesn't straighten up fast.

Krimm_Blackleaf
2007-04-02, 09:36 PM
Hooorible violation of his code. The court says he shall fall!

Caledonian
2007-04-02, 09:37 PM
It's a violation of the code, and without extenuating circumstances, it's a gross violation.

Either his deity begins denying him major aspects of his powers, or revokes them completely. A simple Atonement spell, preceded by the paladin's return of the gem, public apology to those involved, and donation of half of his personal wealth to charity, would be sufficient to set things straight, though.

Aquillion
2007-04-02, 09:41 PM
It's a violation of the code, and without extenuating circumstances, it's a gross violation.I'm not sure I'd call it a gross violation. Gross violations, to me, are more character-defining events, like killing your liege, poisoning your blade in a crucial dual of honor, and so forth. Pocketing treasure is hardly proper Paladin behavior, but it isn't such a monstrous act that it'd get you thrown out of the faith on its own.

1337_master
2007-04-02, 09:43 PM
Of course He should lose his Paladin hood! lying, stealing, etc etc.

SpiderBrigade
2007-04-02, 09:46 PM
I recommend having a talk with the DM and the player about this before anything happens in-game. If the DM agrees that this action is fall-worthy, I think he should let the paladin player know this, then give him a chance to share the gem. I say this because it's very possible that the player wants the gem, and is metagaming reasons to keep it. A little reminder that paladins are above such thing should give him enough of a nudge to change his tune. If not...well, there might be consequences.

I'm not totally sure that this is an "instant-fall" kind of offense, but it's definitely un-paladinish. If the player persists, he might be one or tow further actions away from alignment shift.

Caledonian
2007-04-02, 09:46 PM
Pocketing treasure is hardly proper Paladin behavior, but it isn't such a monstrous act that it'd get you thrown out of the faith on its own.

Violation of a contract made in good faith without extenuating circumstances. Avarice. Betrayal. It's a major Chaotic act that doesn't serve Good - that's bad news for paladins.

And I didn't say thrown out of the faith. Denied paladin powers, yes. Major sins are grounds for that - there are plenty of Lawful Good people who don't qualify to be paladins, and they're good and decent people. Theft? Disqualification, right there.

If he'd felt bad and gave it back, it'd be mostly okay. But repeatedly refusing to discuss it and continuing to possess the gem? Bad news. If he wants it for a Good purpose, he can make restitution to the party for its value (he actually acquired it, so I'd consider him to have first dibs, unless the contract says otherwise). But that's not what he's doing.

Person_Man
2007-04-02, 10:04 PM
Well, he never lied. He failed to answer a question.

He never stole. He found the gem in a dungeon. It didn't belong to the Druid before the Paladin found it, and maybe he has a better purpose for it in mind.

I'm not sure of the wording of the contract, so I can't say whether or not he broke it. But even if he did break a contract, that's still only an maybe an unlawful act. If he's outside of a country then no one has the legal jurisdiction to enforce it. So maybe its technically allowable, even though its a jerk move.

Look at Miko. She's an excellent example of a Paladin who treated people poorly all the time and actively thwarted the Good and legally sanctioned actions of others, and never lost her Paladin abilities until she did some hugely over the line. By the same token, a Chaotic Evil Blackguard could love orphans, buy them all gifts on Solstice, be a really fun drinking buddy, and be totally honest to his friends - but the rest of the time he focuses on the genocide of all Elves everywhere. Chaotic Evil, but nice sometimes. Just like a Paladin can be Lawful Good, but selfish sometimes.

Unless the Paladin has some sort of very strict code, being a mean jerk is not enough to lose Paladin abilities. You only lose your abilities if you commit a blatantly Evil act. And while you are required to follow your code of conduct, the PHB is purposefully vague about what that code is (unlike the Knight, which spells it out for you) and how you choose to best uphold it. You don't lose your abilities for straying from your code a little now and then, as long as you are Good and your true motivation is to uphold your code when possible.

Assassinfox
2007-04-02, 10:09 PM
Yay, Miko

Should we trust the word of someone who supports the elder gods' political campaign? :smallwink:

Wordplay like that is the kinda thing Baatezu do. Might as well have the paladin murder someone and say "I didn't kill him. My sword fell on him and just happened to slice through his neck."

Eighth_Seraph
2007-04-02, 10:20 PM
Frankly, I hold Paladins to a very high standard (rightly so, IMO); and this is the sort of thing that people would be disappointed or outright furious for a the party's fighter to do. Person Man made some good points, but stealing is against the universal moral code for sentient creatures. If the contract states anything to the effect of the gem being the party's shared property, then the paladin needs to be reminded. If he does not immediately give it up, he will be stripped of his divine abilities until he makes proper restitution and Atones.

Nerd-o-rama
2007-04-02, 10:27 PM
stealing is against the universal moral code for sentient creatures.
It is? I'm all for objective morality in D&D, but to my estimation, stealing generally falls into the Chaotic spectrum.

Now, screwing your friends out of treasure for entirely selfish reasons is in the Evil section, and is definitely dishonorable enough to be un-paladinlike. He should probably be asked to explain his actions to the DM out of character, if nothing else. Why ninja your party's loot? If the answer is "finder's keepers", then yeah, this definitely falls into dishonorable, if not Evil.

Ramza00
2007-04-02, 10:28 PM
Sigh the code of conduct is one of the reasons why I hate traditional paladins, better to make a paladin of freedom+crusader

Zincorium
2007-04-02, 10:28 PM
Unless the Paladin has some sort of very strict code, being a mean jerk is not enough to lose Paladin abilities. You only lose your abilities if you commit a blatantly Evil act. And while you are required to follow your code of conduct, the PHB is purposefully vague about what that code is (unlike the Knight, which spells it out for you) and how you choose to best uphold it. You don't lose your abilities for straying from your code a little now and then, as long as you are Good and your true motivation is to uphold your code when possible.

Emphasis mine. Yes, yes they do. They are required by the code to not simply refrain from doing evil, but actively supporting good and law 100% of the time. Loose morals are not a paladin-ish trait.

Firstly, acting honorably. Is there a more honorable thing the paladin should have done? Yep, and they didn't do it. In fact, they did the dishonorable thing. Whether the contract was enforceable or not has no bearing, if the paladin agreed to it, they are obligated to honor that agreement. You don't keep paladin status just because no one is there to catch you.

And while you might or might not lose your abilities for straying from the code, if you do so for a good reason, but there was no good reason espoused here, and willfully and intentionally violating the code that way shows you just don't have what it takes to be a paladin. Maybe you could be a highly religious fighter or the like, but you just don't have the commitment and devotion that are the entire reason paladins are given powers in the first place.

Felius
2007-04-02, 10:30 PM
Insufficient information.

With what he knew about his party members, what he expects the druid to do with a wish?

How is his general behavior?

What he did with the wish?

What was his intention when he stole the gem?

Any other aggravating or mitigating factors?

Ranis
2007-04-02, 10:32 PM
Obviously a violation of Code 13439B: "Thou shalt not steal whilst playing a paladin or be poked to death by +3 Holy Pointy Sharp Instruments of Death."

Sardia
2007-04-02, 10:37 PM
Well, the only reason to do it was personal gain. Quibble about details one way or the other, he was motivated by greed here. Cosmic moral slapdown time, I think.

Ramza00
2007-04-02, 10:41 PM
Not neccessary, perhaps the reason he kept the gem for himself is so he can use it for some noble lawfulish or goody thin, a wish is a powerful resource and can make a good side plot/backstory reason.

Nerd-o-rama
2007-04-02, 10:42 PM
No, there are other possible reasons. That's the one detail that actually matters: if he "stole" the gem for a (very) good reason, not than personal gain, he might be okay, cosmic-morally speaking.

Kultrum
2007-04-02, 10:44 PM
The pally loses his powers, he goes not pass go, he does not collect 200gp

Kultrum
2007-04-02, 10:45 PM
Not neccessary, perhaps the reason he kept the gem for himself is so he can use it for some noble lawfulish or goody thin, a wish is a powerful resource and can make a good side plot/backstory reason.

even then he lied about it, it would be ok if he said what it was as he knew then said he would keep it and put it to good use

Fax Celestis
2007-04-02, 10:46 PM
Obviously a violation of Code 13439B: "Thou shalt not steal whilst playing a paladin or be poked to death by +3 Holy Pointy Sharp Instruments of Death."

...which happens to be the same penalty for violating Codes 1 through 13438, as well.

Ramza00
2007-04-02, 10:48 PM
even then he lied about it, it would be ok if he said what it was as he knew then said he would keep it and put it to good use
Lawful doesn't mean you arent' allowed to lie, it means you aren't allowed to lie frivolously. If the reasons for the lie is an important reason, especially if its connected to a "cause" or "order" he is allowed to do so.

Now if he is lieing for the sake of greed, that is a different matter :smallwink:

TheOOB
2007-04-02, 10:51 PM
No, there are other possible reasons. That's the one detail that actually matters: if he "stole" the gem for a (very) good reason, not than personal gain, he might be okay, cosmic-morally speaking.

Since when has the paladin code been about good? Paladins are required to be good, but they lose their paladinhood if they break their code even if they do so for the greater good.

I never liked paladins because their code often forces them to do things that are down-right stupid or lose class abilities, and they abilities they risk losing arn't even good enough to warrent such a balancing factor.

In any case, stealing from the group is grounds for falling, no matter what your intentions.

Knight_Of_Twilight
2007-04-02, 10:52 PM
I really don't see how its a question. Its not one big evil, its lots of little small ones put together. He falls, but not dramatically.

If he had some other reason besides personal gain, maybe...

PMDM
2007-04-02, 10:54 PM
You could argue that he's trying to "protect" the gem, but that's kind of cheating.

Caledonian
2007-04-02, 10:56 PM
Since when has the paladin code been about good? Paladins are required to be good, but they lose their paladinhood if they break their code even if they do so for the greater good.

No, they don't. Paladins lose their status for even a single Evil action, but minor violations of the code don't cause that. Paladins are in fact obligated to break the code when upholding it leads directly to Evil outcomes.


In any case, stealing from the group is grounds for falling, no matter what your intentions.

Not necessarily. You seem more concerned about the social contract between the players than the principles binding the characters.

Kultrum
2007-04-02, 10:58 PM
Lawful doesn't mean you arent' allowed to lie, it means you aren't allowed to lie frivolously. If the reasons for the lie is an important reason, especially if its connected to a "cause" or "order" he is allowed to do so.

Now if he is lieing for the sake of greed, that is a different matter :smallwink:

true being lawful doesn't mean you can't lie, but the paladin code of conduct says "a paladins code requires that she act with honor (NOT LYING not cheating etc)

Knight_Of_Twilight
2007-04-02, 11:03 PM
Since when has the paladin code been about good? Paladins are required to be good, but they lose their paladinhood if they break their code even if they do so for the greater good.

A paladin has to do an EVIL act to lose it. Greater good is usually a load of crap, but if it is actually done for a greater good, then I'm sure the Paladin gets a pass.

Sardia
2007-04-02, 11:04 PM
No, there are other possible reasons. That's the one detail that actually matters: if he "stole" the gem for a (very) good reason, not than personal gain, he might be okay, cosmic-morally speaking.

Then why not explain the good reason to the other members of the party?

Tokiko Mima
2007-04-02, 11:06 PM
Counter question: Would it be acceptable for a chaotic good rogue to steal from fellow party member for selfish gain?

Sure the characters might not know that he stole that rock, but the players do. It's not a good idea in general to encourage intra-player friction like that, unless that's the focus of your campaign.

Personally, I would handle it like that episode of Futurama where Zoidberg steals a small amount of money from Fry. Come up with situations where a Wish from the stone would solve the problem, but because they don't have a wish stone the party as a whole suffers slightly. If you have an NPC along, have them say, "You know if we had a Wish stone this would be no problem.... but oooohh.. we don't." then look disappointed and continue on without blaming or in any way identifying the paladin in question.

Innis Cabal
2007-04-02, 11:08 PM
yes it would Tokiko, because stealing isnt lawful

Assassinfox
2007-04-02, 11:09 PM
Counter question: Would it be acceptable for a chaotic good rogue to steal from fellow party member for selfish gain?

In my opinion, no. Main reason why I think :haley: is Chaotic Neutral.

Innis Cabal
2007-04-02, 11:10 PM
stealing isnt evil, look at robinhood he was good.

Assassinfox
2007-04-02, 11:12 PM
stealing isnt evil, look at robinhood he was good.

Stealing for YOURSELF is evil. Robin Hood gave it all away. :smalltongue:

Ramza00
2007-04-02, 11:13 PM
true being lawful doesn't mean you can't lie, but the paladin code of conduct says "a paladins code requires that she act with honor (NOT LYING not cheating etc)

Full Quote since you need to read else you will skew the meaning and the rules of paladins, code of conduct, and ex-paladins.



Code of Conduct

A paladin must be of lawful good alignment (http://www.d20srd.org/srd/description.htm#alignment) and loses all class abilities if she ever willingly commits an evil act.


Additionally, a paladinís code requires that she respect legitimate authority, act with honor (not lying, not cheating, not using poison (http://www.d20srd.org/srd/specialAbilities.htm#poison), and so forth), help those in need (provided they do not use the help for evil or chaotic ends), and punish those who harm or threaten innocents.

Associates

While she may adventure with characters of any good or neutral alignment (http://www.d20srd.org/srd/description.htm#alignment), a paladin will never knowingly associate with evil characters, nor will she continue an association with someone who consistently offends her moral code. A paladin may accept only henchmen, followers, or cohorts who are lawful good.

Ex-Paladins

A paladin who ceases to be lawful good, who willfully commits an evil act, or who grossly violates the code of conduct loses all paladin spells and abilities (including the service of the paladinís mount, but not weapon, armor, and shield proficiencies). She may not progress any farther in levels as a paladin. She regains her abilities and advancement potential if she atones for her violations (see the atonement (http://www.d20srd.org/srd/spells/atonement.htm) spell description), as appropriate.


Like a member of any other class, a paladin may be a multiclass character, but multiclass paladins face a special restriction. A paladin who gains a level in any class other than paladin may never again raise her paladin level, though she retains all her paladin abilities.
First paragraph of code of conduct is very strict willful evil act means instant loss of abilites.


The second paragraph though is not as strict, as the first. She can lose all her abilities, though losing such abilities aren't mentioned in her code of conduct paragraph. It is only in the fourth paragraph the one about ex-paladins that it says a paladin can lose all its abilities for violating the code of conduct. Note the word it uses though "grossly"

------------------

Thus a paladin can lose her abilities instantly if she lies for something such as greed. If its for some greater reason (such as her order, or some greater purpose) its a minor infraction against her code of conduct. She doesn't lose her abilities for minor infractions only "gross" misfractions for her code of conduct (what constitutes gross depends on DM, but its big things or a lot of small things that skews your alignment over time.)

The_Werebear
2007-04-02, 11:14 PM
Ah, but :haley: is stealing for the good cause of freeing a person stuck in a prison in Tyrannia. Also, she never actually stole anything from the party. She tricked them into deeding over their own share of treasure.

Kultrum
2007-04-02, 11:15 PM
stealing isnt evil, look at robinhood he was good.

robinhood was good because he stole to help others the rogue would be CN at least because it is for personal gain

Nerd-o-rama
2007-04-02, 11:17 PM
Well, Haley did essentially the same as this Paladin (only funnier) here (http://www.giantitp.com/comics/oots0029.html), and she's perfectly willing to steal as a profession, but Haley's not really the subject here, nor are Chaotic Rogues as a whole.

Ramza00
2007-04-02, 11:20 PM
Well, Haley did essentially the same as this Paladin (only funnier) here (http://www.giantitp.com/comics/oots0029.html), and she's perfectly willing to steal as a profession, but Haley's not really the subject here, nor are Chaotic Rogues as a whole.
What Haley did was a CN act. Any alignment can do any act and still be the same alignment. Haley can be CG and act CN at times. Regardless paladins are a special case, too much or too big of certain acts that go against their alignment or code of conduct make them lose their abilities even if they are still "LG"

Sage in the Playground
2007-04-02, 11:21 PM
.25 Miyazaki's on the Fall Intensity Scale. Anything over .1 is a fall.

The_Werebear
2007-04-02, 11:27 PM
.25 Miyazaki's on the Fall Intensity Scale. Anything over .1 is a fall.

There is a list?

Or are you just making that up.

If there isn't, someone should make one

Foeofthelance
2007-04-03, 12:15 AM
I'd say he falls, his god tells him to put it back, and has to forfeit his next three non-vital shares (and with three paladins in the party, he isn't likely going to be the One True Bearer, except as a plot device) so that he may learn his lesson about greed. After that he can have his powers back.

Sage in the Playground
2007-04-03, 12:20 AM
There is a list?

Or are you just making that up.

If there isn't, someone should make one

Its a means of measuring how hard a paladin fell I devised, as measured next to Miko Miyazaki. A 1 is pretty rare. A .1 is a slight trip like rebelling agaisnt a LE goverment. He falls cause its against the code to reject that governments authority, but its a Good act, so Atonement, and either no quest or a short one. Like wash the local preists clothes.

TheOOB
2007-04-03, 12:25 AM
I'd say he falls, his god tells him to put it back, and has to forfeit his next three non-vital shares (and with three paladins in the party, he isn't likely going to be the One True Bearer, except as a plot device) so that he may learn his lesson about greed. After that he can have his powers back.

According to RAW, the gods are not in charge of paladins falling, and you cannot regain your paladinhood for a deliberate evil act.

You guys are confusing the paladins code with the good alignment still, yes paladins are required to be lawful good, but they are also required to follow a code of conduct. If either they a)change alignment, or b)violate their code, they fall. A paladin can still be the most lawful good person in the world, and it is entirely possible for a chaotic good person to follow the paladin code, but neither of those people can be a paladin.

Stealing a large gem from your group qualifies as "grossly" violating the code. They are outright stealing an item of value from their group, a group for which their is an agreement (explicit or otherwise) that all loot is to be shared. Pocketing a few extra coppers that you can't be bothered to split or forgetting to return some arrows the archer lent you is the kind of stealing that would be allowed, but in this instance it's pretty clear that the person should at least get a very very stern warning that their paladin abilities are hanging in the balance.

Aquillion
2007-04-03, 02:51 AM
According to RAW, the gods are not in charge of paladins falling, and you cannot regain your paladinhood for a deliberate evil act.Where are you getting this? The rules explictly state that you can, indeed, regain your paladin abilities, even for a deliberate evil act:
A paladin who ceases to be lawful good, who willfully commits an evil act, or who grossly violates the code of conduct loses all paladin spells and abilities (including the service of the paladin’s mount, but not weapon, armor, and shield proficiencies). She may not progress any farther in levels as a paladin. She regains her abilities and advancement potential if she atones for her violations (see the atonement spell description), as appropriate.And atonement specifically notes that it can redeem evil acts, as well:

A paladin who has lost her class features due to committing an evil act may have her paladinhood restored to her by this spell.Extremely straightforward. There is a 500 xp cost for the caster if the act was willful, but that is the only difference it makes.

Paladin codes simply aren't as strict as most people make them out to be, nor is falling nearly as serious as most people think. I notice one person here said, for instance, "I never liked paladins because their code often forces them to do things that are down-right stupid or lose class abilities, and they abilities they risk losing arn't even good enough to warrent such a balancing factor." This is a common result of this misinterpretation. The paladin code is at least half flavor; they have to stick to it, yes, but a PC should never be in real danger of losing their abilities for good (or even being forced to adventure for any meaningful length of time without his abilities) unless they deliberately want to switch to Blackguard or something similar, or if they screw up so often and badly that it's plain that they're not playing a Lawful Good character. Short of that, the rules are set up to make regaining Paladinhood a matter of 'insert coin, receive atonement.' Or, like Hinjo said in the comic: There wouldn't be an atonement spell if people didn't screw up occasionally.

...with that said, I still don't think that this act (taken on its own) is enough for a Paladin to fall, although it's at least borderline. For it to cause an immediate fall, it would have to be either an evil act, or a gross violation. Unfortunately, neither term is really well-defined in RAW, so it does come down to personal judgement to a degree, but pocketing one piece of treasure just doesn't strike me as grossly anything... and while it is selfish, and selfishness is a key element of evil, I think it's silly to claim that every selfish act is therefore 'willfully evil' in the sense used by the Code. If Paladins fell every time they did anything selfish, there wouldn't be any Paladins left, atonement or no.

Selfishness isn't good, no, but I can't see one selfish act making a Paladin fall all on its own.

Iron_Mouse
2007-04-03, 04:46 AM
I agree with Person Man and Aquilion...

He didn't even "steal" the gem, he found it and then just decided he don't want to share it with the party for now. For this act itself he cannot fall, as we know nothing about his motivations. When he later uses the gem for selfish reasons, he might fall *then*, but chances are actually good that he won't because, you know, he STILL is a LG paladin. I really wonder why so many people automatically assume that this was a selfish act.

After all, I think we are talking about the Tomb of TPKs Horrors here, having a wish ready to save the party sounds like a good idea. Maybe he just wanted to avoid that the wish was wasted by the party for something silly, but I don't know the other party members.

Zincorium
2007-04-03, 05:02 AM
I agree with Person Man and Aquilion...

He didn't even "steal" the gem, he found it and then just decided he don't want to share it with the party for now. For this act itself he cannot fall, as we know nothing about his motivations. When he later uses the gem for selfish reasons, he might fall *then*, but chances are actually good that he won't because, you know, he STILL is a LG paladin. I really wonder why so many people automatically assume that this was a selfish act.

After all, I think we are talking about the Tomb of TPKs Horrors here, having a wish ready to save the party sounds like a good idea. Maybe he just wanted to avoid that the wish was wasted by the party for something silly, but I don't know the other party members.

There is a written party charter, which the paladin willingly signed, that forbids what you describe. He then LIED, outright, about taking it to a fellow party member, who was the one who actually found it. He did not simply 'find' it and keep it without telling anyone. He took something someone else pointed out, and denied having it.

Breaking a signed, legal, and honorable contract. Lying to a companion who is responsible for finding the gem in the first place.

Seriously, I would say that unless the player had absolutely exalted motives for doing this, it's something a champion of lawful good simply should not do. Considering it is very, very possible according to how the charter is described that he could have gotten the gem by being honest and stating that he really needed it, the deception leaves a bad taste in my mouth.

Saying that he wouldn't fall until he decided what to do with it may be true, but if there is honestly a question in the character's mind as to whether he should do the right thing or not, then he has no business being a paladin. Paladins aren't just fighters with a good reputation. They have to meet the criteria by which they are selected or they no longer deserve the powers that are given to them.

Latronis
2007-04-03, 05:53 AM
Even if he had 'good' intentions he still went about it the wrong way.

Whatever his intentions may be he deliberately decieved party member of which there is an accord relating to loot, to keep the gem.

Bad bad paladin.

I would find out the characters intentions OOC, then revoke his powers until he made some from of restitution, and if he doesn't that's grounds for falling and seeking an atonement spell.

On the otherhand i don't allow atonement to fix everything either, what Miko did thats a an xp cost atonement to regain and a quest to show she's contrite.

However a deliberate willful evil act is grounds for falling without chance of atonement.

Caledonian
2007-04-03, 06:55 AM
If he wants to use the gem for a Good purpose, he should have compensated the rest of the group for their share of the treasure.

Jayabalard
2007-04-03, 09:03 AM
Lawful doesn't mean you arent' allowed to lie, it means you aren't allowed to lie frivolously. If the reasons for the lie is an important reason, especially if its connected to a "cause" or "order" he is allowed to do so.

Now if he is lieing for the sake of greed, that is a different matter :smallwink:Being a paladin means that you can't lie... frivolously or not; it's part of the code.

Refuse to answer? That's allowable as long as you're doing it for a good or lawful reason... Telling partial truths, or even the whole truth if you do it in an intentionally unconvincing manner, stretching the code but you can probably still get away with it. Falsely telling someone that you found "nothing" when it's "something", not allowed.


A paladin has to do an EVIL act to lose it. Greater good is usually a load of crap, but if it is actually done for a greater good, then I'm sure the Paladin gets a pass.Or they can fall by grossly violating their code.... which includes acting with honor (not lying, etc)

Variable Arcana
2007-04-03, 09:44 AM
I'm going to go out on a limb after a page and a half of people reaching definitive conclusions one way or another and say: Given only the Original Post, we don't have enough information.

The original post is self-contradictory:
when asked about it, he did not answer.AND
the druid asked "what do you have there?" and recieved a reply of "nothing"The latter would clearly be an outright lie (and one violation of the Paladin Code), the former would not.

our druid recently came across a mysterious gem. he was afraid to touch it, believing that it may have been cursed/evil etc. The paladin offered his services and retrieved it.What's going on with that? What are the paladin's contractual rewards for taking the direct risk himself?

he obviously wanted the gem for himself, and stole outright from our party,Is this speculation (as "obviously" indicates) or did has he said or done something to indicate he is taking the gem for himself? Has there been a pooling of loot for division since the incident, in which the paladin refused to give up the gem and lied about its existence again?

Has anyone even considered that the druid's initial fear may have been warranted -- could the paladin's response (following a whispered, private conversation with the DM -- NEVER A GOOD SIGN) actually be the result of a curse??

Person_Man
2007-04-03, 10:13 AM
Well, after reading about the details of the contract and the particulars of this Paladin's strict code, its now clear to me that this Paladin broke his code in this case. Whether or not it was a gross violation, worthy of having his powers stripped, is up to the DM.

But may I remind people that D&D is a game that often revolves around taking quests from strangers to go with a bunch of people you just met in the bar to go and kill something or some people and take their stuff - or some variation on that theme.

If I walk into an Orc camp, kill everyone, and loot their corpses, am I Good or Evil? What if they're not Orcs, but Chaotic Good human bandits who have been pillaging the countryside because they hate the overzealous Lawful Good lord and his band of meddling Paladins? What if they're Neutral halfling traders who have been grossly violating tax collection laws by trading on the black market, and you were hired by the local Lawful Good king to take them down?

Obviously, there are huge gray areas. But its undeniable that shaky relationships, murder, and theft is an inherent part of D&D, even for the most Lawful Good of characters.

When one of my PC's choose to play a Paladin, I leave their code and sense of morality up to them, and only have the gods punish them for something blatantly Evil. I do this because the alternative, using my power as DM to enforce their roleplaying choices, tends to ruin the game for them.

Or worse, the player decides that in order to be true to their Paladin beliefs, they have to enforce their beliefs on everyone else in the party, who have some very diverse ideas about how they want to roleplay. While this is expected to some extent (a Paladin can't knowingly tolerate Evil party members), if they take it too far it ruins the experience for everyone. Which is why so many people have a gut reaction of disgust to Paladins.

So yes, this particular Paladin did something against his retarded code. But I would advise that you not get caught up in the particulars of morality or contracts or laws in D&D. It's all just made up anyway. Try to DM in a way that will lead to the best roleplaying experience for everyone, without completely sacrificing what it means to be a Paladin. In this situation, I would just let the PC's argue about it, and then move on. They've learned that the Paladin can't be trusted, and he's just full of himself and his self righteous beliefs. Sounds like a great roleplaying opportunity to me. If you do something different, I'd be interested in hearing on how it works out. Perhaps there's some way to finesse this I'm not aware of.

Gamebird
2007-04-03, 10:58 AM
I'm going to go out on a limb after a page and a half of people reaching definitive conclusions one way or another and say: Given only the Original Post, we don't have enough information.

...Has anyone even considered that the druid's initial fear may have been warranted -- could the paladin's response (following a whispered, private conversation with the DM -- NEVER A GOOD SIGN) actually be the result of a curse??

I agree. I'd have to know the answers to your questions and to a few of my own:

1) How does anyone know what the gem does? How do they know it's a valuable Wish gem instead of a cursed one? Is this sudden desire for the gem by the other party members entirely based on OOC/metagaming?

2) How long has the paladin had the gem? **Someone** has to hold the treasure until it gets properly identified, appraised and divided later. Is there a reason why this can't be the paladin? Has he had it for three minutes or three weeks?

3) What are the details around the paladin refusing to tell the others about the gem? Did the druid tell the others about it? Is the paladin saying he doesn't have it? Is he just refusing to answer questions about it? How many questions has he refused to answer and why? Is the party in a situation where a discussion about the matter is safe and okay?


We could have two wildly different scenarios:

Scenario A, the Thieving ex-Paladin
The paladin took the gem, pocketed it and then lied to the rest of the party about it. He had it secretly identified (or somehow knew) the item. Finding that it was valuable, he decided to keep it for himself. The party has had a standard loot-dividing session since he found the gem and he actively avoided it, or lied about having any loot that needed to be divided.

He should fall.

Scenario B, the Virtuous Paladin
The druid found a gem he suspected was cursed. Being a good person, the paladin willingly took the risk on himself to touch the gem. He's been carrying it since then, which has only been a short time. Although he knows out of character that the gem is valuable, in character he does not. He intends to have the gem identified as soon as possible, but as the party is in a dungeon, this isn't a good time. The druid knows he has it, but the paladin's player views the druid's (and the rest of the party's) sudden change of heart and greed for the gem to be crass metagaming. They wouldn't be acting that way if it was cursed and there's no in-game reason why they think it has a Wish. To avoid a confrontation about it, the paladin player has been avoiding talking about it and figures it will all work out once they get to a good point to identify it.

He's doing fine. It's the other players who need a thwacking upside the head.

Latronis
2007-04-03, 12:28 PM
The first post implies the paladin decieved the druid after finding out what it was.....

If thats not the case and it's just ooc knowledge TC should clarify that.....

Aquillion
2007-04-03, 10:49 PM
That's a good point.


The paladin offered his services and retrieved it. he pocketed the gem, which turned out to be a gem of Wish,

the thing glows.
after the dm whispered in the pally's ear, explaining the power of the gem, the druid asked "what do you have there?" and recieved a reply of "nothing"
How do you know it was a gem of Wish? For that matter, why would the DM suddenly whisper this to the Paladin when he touches it? Paladins don't have any magical ability to know what something is when they pick it up. Normally, items that have effects that would cause DM-whispering when touched are cursed.

It could be a curse that convinces people that the gem is a valuable item, even. Ooo, that's wicked... most such cursed items only convince the bearer that it's valuable, but what about one that convinces everyone but the bearer? The curse won't let the Paladin give it away or talk about it, but since that same curse also convinced everyone else that it's a gem of Wish, it makes everyone angry at him...

And, look, you're in the Tomb of Horrors. The Druid knows what he's talking about. The floor is cursed in the Tomb of Horrors. Do you really think there would be a gem of Wish just lying around for the taking?

Caledonian
2007-04-03, 11:20 PM
Being a paladin means that you can't lie... frivolously or not; it's part of the code.

Wrong. The code can be violated. It's only doing Evil and knowingly tolerating Evil that paladins can't do. Everything else is negotiable.

TheOOB
2007-04-04, 12:17 AM
Wrong. The code can be violated. It's only doing Evil and knowingly tolerating Evil that paladins can't do. Everything else is negotiable.

Negotiating with the code ruins the entire point of the code. Paladins are expected to uphold a certain amount of honor. A player knows how strict the paladin code is when they choose to roll the class (frankly you'd have to be pretty masochistic to pick a class whos extreamly sub-par abilities hinge on a strict code), and they should be expected to uphold the code or fall.

Paladins don't walk a thin grey line, they are paragons of law, good, and honor. If there is any question about whether or not a paladin did something wrong, they probally did.

Felius
2007-04-04, 12:32 AM
Yes, but above all they are paragons of good. The rest is secondary. So if he lie to prevent a great evil, he shouldn't fall, even it is a damn pokerface outright lie.

TheOOB
2007-04-04, 01:07 AM
Yes, but above all they are paragons of good. The rest is secondary. So if he lie to prevent a great evil, he shouldn't fall, even it is a damn pokerface outright lie.

Thats not entirely true, the paladin code doesn't allow for the who lesser evil for a greater good thing. For a paladin the means justify the ends. Even if it will result in an unfavorable outcome, a paladin must always conduct themselves in an honorable manner, that is the curse of the paladin.

Renegade Paladin
2007-04-04, 03:41 AM
Sigh the code of conduct is one of the reasons why I hate traditional paladins, better to make a paladin of freedom+crusader
If you can't put up with it, don't play one. Problem solved.

Aquillion
2007-04-04, 08:39 AM
Negotiating with the code ruins the entire point of the code. Paladins are expected to uphold a certain amount of honor. A player knows how strict the paladin code is when they choose to roll the class (frankly you'd have to be pretty masochistic to pick a class whos extreamly sub-par abilities hinge on a strict code), and they should be expected to uphold the code or fall.You know, when the rules don't seem to make sense to you (as is the case here), you should probably read them more closely. The reason you keep saying how horrible things are for Paladins is because you don't understand how their code works.

From the SRD:

Ex-Paladins

A paladin who ceases to be lawful good, who willfully commits an evil act, or who grossly violates the code of conduct loses all paladin spells and abilities (including the service of the paladin’s mount, but not weapon, armor, and shield proficiencies). She may not progress any farther in levels as a paladin. She regains her abilities and advancement potential if she atones for her violations (see the atonement spell description), as appropriate.
That's it. Per RAW, those are the only ways a Paladin can fall, period. No number of minor lies to party members can ever cause a Paladin to fall, not unless they accumulate to the point where her alignment is obviously not Lawful.

The only ways a Paladin can fall is by willfully committing a lawful act, changing their alignment, or grossly violating their code of conduct. Minor violations never, ever, ever put them in danger of falling on a code violation (although they may fall if it means their alignment has shifted.)

Likewise, a Paladin who falls, for any reason, can always, always be redeemed by the atonement spell. A Paladin can kill and eat babies for pleasure, and as long as they're genuinely repentant the next day, atonement can fully restore their abilities. I don't see how much clearer the rules could've made it.

Like I said above: While Paladins do have to follow the code, it's at least half fluff. Even though it's a code violation, no amount of lying, for instance, will put a Paladin in danger, not unless one of those lies qualifies as a gross violation somehow or the sum total means that their alignment is non-lawful. This isn't rules-lawyering; this is how they're intended to be played. They're heroic warriors, not Modrons... the rules explictly allow them to be imperfect as long as they're basically Lawful Good, don't grossly violate their code, and don't willingly succumb to evil.

Assassinfox
2007-04-04, 08:40 AM
To the OP: The DM should just smite him down for being a paladin and starting this whole mess. :smalltongue:

Jayabalard
2007-04-04, 08:55 AM
Like I said above: While Paladins do have to follow the code, it's at least half fluff. Even though it's a code violation, no amount of lying, for instance, will put a Paladin in danger, not unless one of those lies qualifies as a gross violation somehow or the sum total means that their alignment is non-lawful. This isn't rules-lawyering; this is how they're intended to be played. They're heroic warriors, not Modrons... the rules explictly allow them to be imperfect as long as they're basically Lawful Good, don't grossly violate their code, and don't willingly succumb to evil.
I'm pretty sure that the claim is that in the case that has been presented, the paladin lying to his comrades, stealing from the party, and violating his written contract constitutes a gross violation of his code.

And a paladin that "eats babies" and then repents may have trouble convincing a cleric that he really has repented, and is likely to get stuck on a real pain in the ass quest before they can get their powers back.

reorith
2007-04-04, 08:56 AM
To the OP: The DM should just smite him down for being a paladin and starting this whole mess. :smalltongue:

yeah but then he has precedent to smite my character :smallfrown:

Aquillion
2007-04-04, 09:27 AM
I'm pretty sure that the claim is that in the case that has been presented, the paladin lying to his comrades, stealing from the party, and violating his written contract constitutes a gross violation of his code.

And a paladin that "eats babies" and then repents may have trouble convincing a cleric that he really has repented, and is likely to get stuck on a real pain in the ass quest before they can get their powers back.I don't know if I'd consider it a gross violation (there are too many other factors to consider, even as presented), but I didn't mean to say whether or not this paladin should fall. I was just pointing out that (at least by RAW) a Paladin doesn't fall for 'white lies' and other minor infractions, since some people seemed to think they do.

And it's true, they'll have to convince a co-aligned cleric to cast the spell, which would be doubly hard since the cleric would have to pay XP to cast atonement for willing act. But (assuming they're really genuinely repentant and willing so the spell will work), it's the cleric's decision alone.

Arbitrarity
2007-04-04, 04:34 PM
Spoiler for those who haven't done ToH

It is THAT gem, right? If so, then he has his just deserts anyway.

Sutremaine
2007-04-04, 05:36 PM
Spoiler for those who haven't done ToH

It is THAT gem, right? If so, then he has his just deserts anyway.
Is it a Gem of Dryness? Ooh wait, I know, it's a Gem of Horrid Wilting! :smalltongue:
Sorry, couldn't resist.

One solution to the problem of a paladin starting to turn away from the straight and narrow but not actually doing enough to fall is for the paladin not to receive his spells until he shapes up. It would kick under the same circumstances as a Phylactery of Faithfulness would, but after the fact and with more severe consequences.

aaron_the_cow
2007-04-04, 07:44 PM
how do you know it is a gem o 3 wishes???
maby a demon inside is posessing him to say, "I don't have any thing..."
maby that is why the DM wispered somthing in his ear.....
THINK PEOPLE THINK!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

SpiderBrigade
2007-04-04, 08:19 PM
Of course if its a cursed gem that just means it'll be easier for the paladin to atone once he falls...the curse has no bearing on whether the acts are fall-worthy or not.

Arbitrarity
2007-04-04, 08:32 PM
True, but still should be interesting.

Anyway, morally, yes he should fall, or at least be severely reprimanded. Give 'im a black mark at least :P.

Of course, if he perishes first, seeing as it is ToH, the point is moot.

Caledonian
2007-04-04, 08:45 PM
Negotiating with the code ruins the entire point of the code. No, because Paladins do not violate their code lightly. They are Lawful Good, not Neutral Good. But they will violate it.

Bouldering Jove
2007-04-04, 08:51 PM
No, because Paladins do not violate their code lightly. They are Lawful Good, not Neutral Good. But they will violate it.
A code isn't a meaningful code at all if violating it is permissible, and someone who follows one but is perfectly willing to break for the right circumstances isn't lawful*. Now, a code can certainly specify conditions that allow different kinds of behavior, but the paladin code of conduct does not do so, as I illustrated in a previous thread. As I recall, you weren't able to defend your position from the SRD there, so why present the same claims?

*As per the SRD: "Someone who is neutral with respect to law and chaos has a normal respect for authority and feels neither a compulsion to obey nor a compulsion to rebel. She is honest but can be tempted into lying or deceiving others."

Aquillion
2007-04-05, 02:25 AM
Of course if its a cursed gem that just means it'll be easier for the paladin to atone once he falls...the curse has no bearing on whether the acts are fall-worthy or not.It does have a bearing. First, evil acts only cause a guaranteed fall if they are willful; if a curse forces a Paladin to do something evil, it's not a guaranteed fall anymore. Second, being cursed isn't dishonorable. Indeed, if the gem is cursed and is preventing the Paladin from discussing it at all, then what, exactly, has the Paladin done that is dishonorable? He hasn't stolen it; the gem has "stuck" to him no matter what he does.

Likewise, the gem could be cursed and worthless and the Paladin could simply be disgusted with his party's suddenly greedy attitude after he took the risk by touching it; worthless objects aren't treasure, and in that case he certainly isn't 'stealing' it (if anything, he's taking the fall for the party by keeping it.) Nothing in the Code says you have to be polite while upholding the Code.


A code isn't a meaningful code at all if violating it is permissible, and someone who follows one but is perfectly willing to break for the right circumstances isn't lawful*. Now, a code can certainly specify conditions that allow different kinds of behavior, but the paladin code of conduct does not do so, as I illustrated in a previous thread. As I recall, you weren't able to defend your position from the SRD there, so why present the same claims?What do you mean? The Paladin's code, like any real-world code of conduct, can be broken in all sorts of ways without any penalty beyond a lingering sense of internal guilt. There are a few very specific situations, carefully-defined in the SRD, where a Paladin can lose their powers over the Code, but the SRD quite clearly indicates that it takes a "gross violation" or a deliberate evil act. That means, yes, by RAW casual lies and disrespect will never cause a Paladin to fall as long as they remain generally lawful good.

Most of the time, if a Paladin breaks the code, nothing happens to them--they don't lose a thing. You might not like it that way, but it is very clearly what the SRD says (and I can't really comprehend why anyone would houserule it otherwise, since the comically wrong 'lie about what you had for breakfast and your deity forsakes you' misinterpretation that some people seem to have would make the class unplayable.) Even a general pattern of minor lies and disrespect towards authority will not endanger a Paladin's class features in the slightest as long as they maintain a generally lawful good alignment and avoid gross violations.

Narmoth
2007-04-05, 07:27 AM
another paladin question

whilst delving the tomb of horrors, our druid recently came across a mysterious gem. he was afraid to touch it, believing that it may have been cursed/evil etc. The paladin offered his services and retrieved it. he pocketed the gem, which turned out to be a gem of Wish, and when asked about it, he did not answer. he obviously wanted the gem for himself, and stole outright from our party, completely disregarding the party contract which he signed. should the lose his paladin-hood over this?

sorry our party has three paladins and uses the default alignment system. as a result we run into these obstacles fairly often.

semi-relevant information.
he is an lg paladin.
the druid was standing in an adjacent square
the thing glows.
after the dm whispered in the pally's ear, explaining the power of the gem, the druid asked "what do you have there?" and recieved a reply of "nothing"
the party charter states that loot is distributed first by party role, second by appraised value and third by the principle of hey who wants this?

Ok, what have really happened: the pally has lied, saying he has nothing there. He has broken a contract, namely a party contract, which is a very dishonourable thing to break since almost any party is dependendt on trusting eachother to survive. He has stolen a very valuable item, for apparently no good reason, since there gem wasn't at present a threat to anyone, or to the pally's knowlege would not be harmfull in the partys hands. If he was very worried about the consequences of the party getting hands onit, he should still have revealed his possesion of the gem and imposed conditions on its use. After imposing conditions, he would of course not have a right to use it.

I wouldn't say he falls, but he would temporarily loose most of his powers. Also, he would be on the way to loosing his powers, but since he hasn't done a mayor evil act (he hasn't killed, molested or hurt anyone) he don't qualify to instant loss of paladinshood. Also, he hasn't done so much as to change aligment from lawfull or from good, and therefore won't loose his staus on accoun on not being of required aligment for the class.

On the other hand, if there's 3 pallys, the rules might be interpreted harsher and the DM might want to de-pally for any evil act.

Aquillion
2007-04-05, 08:51 AM
If he was very worried about the consequences of the party getting hands onit, he should still have revealed his possesion of the gem and imposed conditions on its use. After imposing conditions, he would of course not have a right to use it.Nothing in the code says that Paladins have to be straightforward or polite. If he has decided (say) that the party is evil (which could be the result of the gem's curse), giving it to them would be an evil act, which would cause him to fall instantly. Keeping it isn't evil just a minor code violation, so it's certainly the better option under the code.


I wouldn't say he falls, but he would temporarily loose most of his powers. Also, he would be on the way to loosing his powers, but since he hasn't done a mayor evil act (he hasn't killed, molested or hurt anyone) he don't qualify to instant loss of paladinshood. Also, he hasn't done so much as to change aligment from lawfull or from good, and therefore won't loose his staus on accoun on not being of required aligment for the class.

On the other hand, if there's 3 pallys, the rules might be interpreted harsher and the DM might want to de-pally for any evil act.This is just what I was talking about before! You're not "interpreting" the rules, you're inventing houserules whole-cloth (there is nothing anywhere in the rules about Paladins temporarily losing their powers for minor offenses, or under any circumstances, for that matter--it's either a gross violation or a willful evil act, in which case they fall instantly until atoned, or it's entirely a matter between them, their consience, and their alignment. There is nothing in the rules that would punish a Paladin for minor infractions.

Now, yes, you could houserule otherwise--but why? Why would anyone make things even harder on Paladins? How does it make things more realistic or interesting to force them to interpret the code like mindless robots or get smacked down by an instant hand from the sky? "I must be completely good and honest and kind 24-7 or my god takes away my magic powers" doesn't make for fun roleplaying; following the RAW and keeping enough wriggle room to have, say, both 'upright' and more 'lax' paladins can be much more interesting.

The RAW give Paladins much more leeway than most people think. Why on earth would anyone want to take this away from them? Are overpowered Paladins unbalancing your campaigns, or what?

The rules for Paladins are supposed to be a tool to make the class more interesting and enhance roleplaying. They're not supposed to be a chance for the DM to shout 'gotcha' every time the Paladin opens his mouth.

Caledonian
2007-04-05, 09:03 AM
There are many people who like that D&D provides precise, explicit rules for many things, and it bothers them that some aspects of the game are left up to the players' and DM's discretion. [Scrubbed]

There simply are no explicit rules that determine precisely whether a paladin falls for non-Lawful actions, nor are there precise and clear definitions for what constitutes an Evil action (although the guidelines make interpretation fairly simple). It requires judgement.

Jannex
2007-04-05, 09:07 AM
I think there's also the element of, "What's the point of having a Code that says you can't do X, Y, and Z, if there are no consequences for violating it by doing X, Y, or Z? Why bother even stating it in the first place?" If paladins aren't allowed to lie, cheat, and steal, but they only receive consequences for eating babies and raping puppies, then in reality they're allowed to lie, cheat, and steal (as long as they balance it with enough Lawful acts to maintain their alignment).

Jayabalard
2007-04-05, 09:19 AM
The RAW give Paladins much more leeway than most people think. Why on earth would anyone want to take this away from them? Are overpowered Paladins unbalancing your campaigns, or what?Because the fluff does not give them that leeway... and fluff is more important than crunch for many people. Rules are nothing but a guideline, and they come a distant third after fun and story.

Morgan_Scott82
2007-04-05, 09:37 AM
The thing that always, always bothered me about paladins in general and especially these types of discussions is that there is only A paladin's code. One singular standard that all paladin's regardless of patron deity, or order or setting. Do you think it likely a Paladin of Illmater for instance have the same code as a paladin of the Silver Flame, they're totally different faiths in totally different settings. To me it makes sense that perhaps each individual paladin order would have its own rituals and sacred oaths, and that we should ask the OP about the paladins of his world and his party members order.

Iron_Mouse
2007-04-05, 01:12 PM
I think there's also the element of, "What's the point of having a Code that says you can't do X, Y, and Z, if there are no consequences for violating it by doing X, Y, or Z?
Because paladins are mortals. Mortals tend to be imperfect. They make mistakes, they get into situations they can't control, run into problems they just can't solve the "ideal" way and sometimes they get tempted. It happens.

People keep to think that paladins have to be "perfect" and then are surprised (or pretend to be) when they fail at that.

Sure, there should be things that a paladin just has to fall for. Lies that hurt others. Cheating innocents for personal gain. Fleeing from danger and leave allies behind. Stuff like that.

This is what the "...who willfully commits an evil act, or who grossly violates the code of conduct..." clauses are for. A paladin *should* try to stick to his code whenever possible, of course. A paladin who's not doing this will fall sooner or later, anyway.
But he shouldn't get punished every time when he makes a mistake, willingly or not.

Still: How you define a "gross violation" is up to you. Sure, you can say that even minor lies fall under that, but if you do that, don't complain that you have unplayable paladins.

Jannex
2007-04-05, 01:20 PM
Because paladins are mortals. Mortals tend to be imperfect. They make mistakes, they get into situations they can't control, run into problems they just can't solve the "ideal" way and sometimes they get tempted. It happens.

People keep to think that paladins have to be "perfect" and then are surprised (or pretend to be) when they fail at that.

Sure, there should be things that a paladin just has to fall for. Lies that hurt others. Cheating innocents for personal gain. Fleeing from danger and leave allies behind. Stuff like that.

This is what the "...who willfully commits an evil act, or who grossly violates the code of conduct..." clauses are for. A paladin *should* try to stick to his code whenever possible, of course. A paladin who's not doing this will fall sooner or later, anyway.
But he shouldn't get punished every time when he makes a mistake, willingly or not.

Still: How you define a "gross violation" is up to you. Sure, you can say that even minor lies fall under that, but if you do that, don't complain that you have unplayable paladins.

My point is, if there are only consequences for "gross violations," why mention the "lesser" violations at all? Why list them, if they have no consequences? Why even bother to write them down?

Starbuck_II
2007-04-05, 01:49 PM
My point is, if there are only consequences for "gross violations," why mention the "lesser" violations at all? Why list them, if they have no consequences? Why even bother to write them down?
I think because they add up. If he does a lot of minor they count as a major.

So while he can get away with a minor or two, too much wil be to much.

Aquillion
2007-04-05, 01:50 PM
Because the fluff does not give them that leeway... and fluff is more important than crunch for many people. Rules are nothing but a guideline, and they come a distant third after fun and story.
My point is, if there are only consequences for "gross violations," why mention the "lesser" violations at all? Why list them, if they have no consequences? Why even bother to write them down?These two responses answer each other to a degree.

The point is that fluff gives Paladins a code that is more restrictive than what they are supernaturally bound to uphold. Shocking concept, I know, but most Paladins adhere to the letter of the code even though, per fluff, they could get away with occasional lies without being struck by lightning.

A Lawful Good Fighter doesn't have to worry about being 'struck by lightning' at all; unless they're using their alignment for one of the few things that makes it important, it's just fluff to them. Similarly, a Lawful Good Paladin has a few things in the rules that they are forced to obey or they lose their powers; and many more things in the fluff that are part of the sacred vows they are bound to uphold, but carry no immediate penalties if they're violated.

Why is that so hard to accept? Paladins aren't supposed to be upholding the code because the gods have a gun to their head and will take away their powers if they slip up; they're supposed to be upholding the code because they're paladins and it's the code. They can, per every bit of their fluff defined in the text, get away with minor violations without supernatural consequences; a strict Paladin won't, while a more laid-back Paladin might tell white lies occasionally, but both get to remain Paladins.

All I'm saying is that if you're DMing a game and you intend to punish Paladins for white lies and minor dishonorable acts, you should optimally make this clear in advance, before anyone takes the class, since it's a house rule, and one that dramatically changes the class from the way it's defined in the RAW. Likewise, don't be surprised if in other people's games Paladins can get away with a lot more, or if you encounter people who play low-key, relaxed Paladins who occasionally lie about day-to-day things when convenient, then feel guilty about it later. That is entirely allowed in normal D&D, and you should let them know if you're playing under an alternate system.

Now, to answer this again:
Because the fluff does not give them that leeway... and fluff is more important than crunch for many people. Rules are nothing but a guideline, and they come a distant third after fun and story.The fluff does give them that leeway; I've cited the relevent passages several times. Would you like to point out to where, in the fluff-text for Paladins, it says that they suffer divine or supernatural punishments for minor violations of their code? You won't find it, because minor violations are, in the official fluff for Paladins, not punished. The official fluff is that a Paladin usually won't lie, but they're not subject to punishment for doing so unless it's a gross violation.

Now, if you find it more fun to do it otherwise, you can invent your own house-version of Paladins whose fluff subjects to stricter restrictions; but I still don't understand how you could possibly think it improves 'fun or story' to do so. Changing their fluff to make it so divine punishment falls on them if they lie on their income tax return is flatly stupid. It cheapens the concept of divine intervention and a Paladin's grace, and turns them into mindless good-aligned robots who can't make any meaningful decisions about their actions without inviting a divine thunderbolt. Taking away the leeway given to them in their official description makes them less interesting, not more...

And, as I said above, if you just don't care what the official text on Paladins says, that's fine; but you should know what it says, and make sure everyone else you're playing with is on the same page as you before you go forward. As it's written, Paladins can get away with white lies and such every day.

Iron_Mouse
2007-04-05, 01:51 PM
My point is, if there are only consequences for "gross violations," why mention the "lesser" violations at all? Why list them, if they have no consequences? Why even bother to write them down?
Because too much of minor stuff can/should add up and still cause a fall. A paladin who starts to think that he can lie all the time without reason and get away with it needs to get punished.

As I said, a paladin should still try sticking to the code as good as he can, out of free will. It's a part of what defines him, after all, the "lawful" in their alignment.

Or do all paladins only stick to it because they fear the punishment? And are willed to twist, bend and even break it at every opportunity when they think they can get away whith it? Then why did they even become paladins in the first place, instead of fighters or whatever?

Edit: The two posts weren't there, before...

Jayabalard
2007-04-05, 02:32 PM
Now, to answer this again:The fluff does give them that leeway; I've cited the relevent passages several times. Would you like to point out to where, in the fluff-text for Paladins, it says that they suffer divine or supernatural punishments for minor violations of their code? You won't find it, because minor violations are, in the official fluff for Paladins, not punished. The official fluff is that a Paladin usually won't lie, but they're not subject to punishment for doing so unless it's a gross violation.No... it does not allow them that leeway.

Failure to live by that code means that you are not living up to the requirements of your class. Even if the crunch doesn't specifically state a penalty, the fluff clearly states what you have to do to remain a member of the class. "respect legitimate authority, act with honor (not lying, not cheating, not using poison, and so forth), help those in need (provided they do not use the help for evil or chaotic ends), and punish those who harm or threaten innocents."

While "minor" infractions may not instantly cause a paladin to fall (those violations are spelled out in specific), that doesn't mean that they are without consequences.

I don't recall where you've cited that "minor violations of the paladin code have no consequences." If there is such a line, please post a reference to it. If not, then that's making a ruling just as much as someone who rules the opposite. The only difference is that the person who has graduated levels of punishment between "perfection" and "fallen paladin" probably has a richer, and more believable game.

Gamebird
2007-04-05, 02:52 PM
I don't recall where you've cited that "minor violations of the paladin code have no consequences."

I am reminded of Bears With Lasers setting me straight that just because the rules don't mention something doesn't mean you're free to assume anything you want about it. Like the rules don't say humans can (or can't) fly at will, or paladins have (or don't have) consequences for minor violations of their code. If the RAW doesn't address it, then the RAW doesn't address it.

An absense of addressing it doesn't support either side of an argument.

I think minor violations of the paladinic code clearly falls within DM-judgement territory.

Caledonian
2007-04-05, 06:58 PM
My point is, if there are only consequences for "gross violations," why mention the "lesser" violations at all? Why list them, if they have no consequences? Why even bother to write them down?

Ah, but there are consequences for all actions. The RAW, however, addresses what will cause a paladin to fall. Minor infractions of the code, especially those made to avoid Evil, do not result in falls.

You are, possibly without realizing it, arguing against a strawman. I'm not a huge fan of the RAW (in which a STR 10 commoner carrying an anvil has an easier time swimming than a STR 16 fighter in full plate), but when the rules aren't broken, I don't complain about them. The rules are as explicit on the topic of how a paladin should behave as they can realistically be in a PHB, and their implicit structures are obvious enough to refute your arguments.

Whamme
2007-04-05, 10:18 PM
My point is, if there are only consequences for "gross violations," why mention the "lesser" violations at all? Why list them, if they have no consequences? Why even bother to write them down?

Because

a) You can commit a gross violation by lying
b) Paladins need to avoid doing them on a regular basis

A Paladin who lies habitually is grossly violating the code and falls. A Paladin who lies on rare occasions is not.

See the difference?


The consequences of doing them once are non-existant. The consequences of doing them _all the time_ are not.

Jannex
2007-04-06, 07:13 AM
Ah, but there are consequences for all actions. The RAW, however, addresses what will cause a paladin to fall. Minor infractions of the code, especially those made to avoid Evil, do not result in falls.

What "consequences" does a paladin face for minor violations of his code? When a character becomes a paladin, he makes a deliberate commitment to abide by a specific code of conduct. What are the consequences for violating that code? I'm not saying that telling the bard that he likes her new hairstyle when in reality it looks like the druid's dire badger threw up on her head, should result in a Fall. But there has to be some repercussion for willfully violating the code he's sworn to uphold, even if in a "minor" fashion, or else that code becomes hollow and meaningless.


You are, possibly without realizing it, arguing against a strawman. I'm not a huge fan of the RAW (in which a STR 10 commoner carrying an anvil has an easier time swimming than a STR 16 fighter in full plate), but when the rules aren't broken, I don't complain about them. The rules are as explicit on the topic of how a paladin should behave as they can realistically be in a PHB, and their implicit structures are obvious enough to refute your arguments.

People on this thread have said that paladins should have "leeway" in their Code, and that "sometimes they get tempted." That is what I am discussing. I'd be very careful about tossing around "strawman" accusations.

And if this matter were "obvious," we wouldn't be having this conversation, now would we?


Because

a) You can commit a gross violation by lying
b) Paladins need to avoid doing them on a regular basis

A Paladin who lies habitually is grossly violating the code and falls. A Paladin who lies on rare occasions is not.

See the difference?


The consequences of doing them once are non-existant. The consequences of doing them _all the time_ are not.

That's a valid point. I still feel that lesser violations should result in lesser repercussions (a spectrum of results in between "nothing happens" and "fall"), because archetypally, it seems to me that paladins are more than just Lawful Good fighters with divine magic, and as such should be held to something of a higher standard. They are the Chosen servants of their gods; they are role models; they are supposed to be intrinsically purer and more worthy than other people. That's why they get to be shiny.

PnP Fan
2007-04-06, 11:23 AM
Okay, I stopped reading on page two, because this was beginning to resemble so many of the other paladin related threads. So if I'm suggesting something that's already been posted, I apologize.
Reading the RAW (thanks for the various quotes), it sounds as if there are a couple of possibilities. ..
1. The paladin kept this to himself for selfish reasons, violating the agreement between himself and the party regarding treasure division. This is a violation of the code, no doubt (honor specifically) but not necessarily one that should make him fall (imo). His act of dishonor didn't cause nations to war, or was it an outright lie laced with maliciousness, he neglected to tell the party.
2. The paladin violated his code/honor, but has the Big Picture (tm) in mind, either because this gem is something that can be used for the Greater Good, or perhaps he knows something more about it than the rest of the players. Still a violation of honor, but with more noble intentions, again probably not a "fall".
3. The PLAYER of the paladin assumed that everyone at the table heard what the gem was, and assumed that everyone was okay with him carrying it, or perhaps treasure is usually distributed at the end of the adventure. This is just thoughtlessness on the part of the player(s) and should be addressed OOC.

I think, any way you look at it, it's probably not the best action for the paladin, but not quite enough to make him fall, 'cause it's not really a "gross violation" of his code. More a violation of neglect, as far as I can tell.

What I would do as the GM, is give him a couple of warning shots across the bow. Perhaps his horse is a little skittish the next time he summons him, or he loses a level of spellcasting until he shares knowledge with the party. Something to let him know that he's treading a dangerous path, but nothing so extreme as to make him a non-paladin.

Jayabalard
2007-04-06, 12:20 PM
You are, possibly without realizing it, arguing against a strawman. No, I'm pretty sure that she's arguing against someone who doesn't seem to understand that, in this situation, both rulings by the GM are a judgment call. Ruling to enforce the fluff with in game consequences is a GM judgment call, as is ruling not to enforce the fluff. It's not a case of RAW vs House-Rule; it's a case of GM judgment call that supports the fluff vs GM judgment call that doesn't support the fluff.


I think minor violations of the paladinic code clearly falls within DM-judgement territory.That seems to mean something really similar to "that's making a ruling just as much as someone who rules the opposite."

It's a situation where that is not explicitly covered by rules; the only part of the game text that mentions the situation is the fluff. Whether you enforce that fluff with game consequences, or you don't, you're making a ruling, so claiming that one case is a "House-Rule" and that the other is "RAW" is kind of silly; both are cases where GM makes a judgment call, and since the rules are intentionally left a little bit vague on the subject, so is pretty much any other question of morality.

Gamebird
2007-04-06, 01:32 PM
I agree. This is another version of the standard alignment debate: "How many evil actions does a Good person have to do to lose their alignment?"

or "How many [Evil] spells can a spell caster cast before their alignment shifts towards Evil?"

"How many minor non-good actions can a paladin do before they fall?"

It's just all up to the DM. In my games, I try to make sure a paladin-player knows what my probable rulings will be in cases like these, before they're committed to playing a paladin. It's not because I think I'm all that rough on paladins, but because this is something that directly and mechanically affects their character, but is usually left up to a DM call rather than RAW. Hence, to successfully play their character, they have to know my judgement.

Jannex
2007-04-06, 03:48 PM
No, I'm pretty sure that he's arguing against someone who doesn't seem to understand that, in this situation, both rulings by the GM are a judgment call. Ruling to enforce the fluff with in game consequences is a GM judgment call, as is ruling not to enforce the fluff. It's not a case of RAW vs House-Rule; it's a case of GM judgment call that supports the fluff vs GM judgment call that doesn't support the fluff.

Quite right, except for the bit where you think I'm a guy. :smallwink:

Bouldering Jove
2007-04-06, 04:04 PM
There are many people who like that D&D provides precise, explicit rules for many things, and it bothers them that some aspects of the game are left up to the players' and DM's discretion. [Scrubbed]

There simply are no explicit rules that determine precisely whether a paladin falls for non-Lawful actions, nor are there precise and clear definitions for what constitutes an Evil action (although the guidelines make interpretation fairly simple). It requires judgement.
There are many people who like that tabletop roleplaying provides the freedom for players and gamemasters to do as they wish, and it bothers them that some aspects of games are actually mechanically codified. [Scrubbed]
There are explicit rules that allow, with DM adjudication of a "gross" violation, precisely whether a paladin falls for non-lawful actions, and there are more than adequate guidelines for what constitutes an evil action. It requires judgment, but within a clearly established framework, which does not ever state that paladins acting dishonorably and thus violating the code is permitted in the right context (whether that context includes avoiding evil or not).

Jayabalard
2007-04-06, 04:17 PM
There are many people who like that tabletop roleplaying provides the freedom for players and gamemasters to do as they wish, and it bothers them that some aspects of games are actually mechanically codified.Lucky for them, the rules don't actually mention the consequences or lack thereof for a paladin who violates their code in a non-gross fashion.

Roland St. Jude
2007-04-06, 07:44 PM
Sheriff of Moddingham: Please be do not insult others based on their playing preferences. That includes both individual attacks and attacks aimed a groups of posters.




Flaming
Any poster that openly attacks, insults, belittles, or abuses another poster will have their offending post modified and an Infraction issued to them. You can be critical of another poster's viewpoint in a debate, even going as far as to explain why you believe them to be mistaken and backing your points up with rules quotes as appropriate, but the moment your criticism extends to the person who posted that viewpoint, it has crossed the line.

Specific things you cannot do on this message board that might be allowed elsewhere:

...

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We run a much tighter ship when it comes to flaming than many other places you might post. We have tried to create a place where people can have discussions about gaming and other topics without the rampant personal attacks prevalent at other RPG boards. If you find you are incapable of participating in a debate without resorting to attacking your opponent instead of his position, our suggestion is that you find another board to post at.
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Caledonian
2007-04-06, 07:50 PM
I fail to see how that 'belittled' anyone. Especially considering that I'm quite high on the autism scale myself and miss qualifying as having Asperger's by a hair.

All things considered, I find people who are deeply-concerned with rules and structure far easier to tolerate than those who are deeply inconsistent and lackadasical about structure. It's important to note that there are many, many aspects of life, gaming, and D&D specifically that we cannot precisely quantify and effectively describe in rule-statements. Paladin codes are just one example of things in D&D that have a profound impact on play yet are not explicitly defined.

raistlin807
2007-04-14, 11:52 AM
Isn't there also some rule that states that paladins can't accumulate material wealth?

Talya
2007-04-14, 12:00 PM
It's a chaotic act (which doesn't necessarily cause the paladin to fall, but they should avoid them), very selfish, very unpaladinish.

If I were the DM, I'd warn him only once about such an act...it betrays a mindset that goes utterly against his alignment and is at least a minor (if not major) violation of the paladin code. Depending on his actions up to that point, I'd seriously consider making him fall right then and there. If this is a one time, seeming moment of weakness thing, I'd wait and see what he used it for. It's possible the paladin is acting chaoticly in the interests of some greater good, which, while dangerous, is forgivable without attonement if they don't make a habit of it.

kamikasei
2007-04-14, 02:09 PM
Isn't there also some rule that states that paladins can't accumulate material wealth?

Not that I've ever heard of. There's the idea that they should tithe some of their wealth to their church or give it to charity, but paladin's aren't Vow of Poverty characters by default; they gain wealth, and equipment, appropriate to their level just like other characters.

Of course this might be roleplayed as their handing over their gains to their church and then being granted equipment as a boon - but that's not in the rules.

daggaz
2007-04-14, 07:32 PM
It's a chaotic act (which doesn't necessarily cause the paladin to fall, but they should avoid them), very selfish, very unpaladinish.

If I were the DM, I'd warn him only once about such an act...it betrays a mindset that goes utterly against his alignment and is at least a minor (if not major) violation of the paladin code. Depending on his actions up to that point, I'd seriously consider making him fall right then and there. If this is a one time, seeming moment of weakness thing, I'd wait and see what he used it for. It's possible the paladin is acting chaoticly in the interests of some greater good, which, while dangerous, is forgivable without attonement if they don't make a habit of it.


Thats about the best judgement of this that I have read so far. Gonna agree 110% here.

Gamebird
2007-04-16, 09:06 AM
Isn't there also some rule that states that paladins can't accumulate material wealth?

In 2nd (and maybe first, I'm not sure) edition, rangers couldn't own more than they could carry. This had little real impact on their character wealth, as they just took the most valuable forms of coinage and gems, or invested in magic items.

In the same edition of the game, paladins were required to tithe to their church. The expected amount was 10% of income.

In 3.X, no wealth limits are mentioned (outside Vow of Poverty, which isn't core anyway), but if you play with folks who played earlier editions (or you did so yourself), then you might hear that mentioned from time to time.

Jayabalard
2007-04-16, 09:13 AM
I think 1st edition paladins couldn't have more wealth than they could carry, everything else was supposed to be Tithed (though the Cavalier based variant allowed a little more wealth I think)

Matthew
2007-04-16, 08:09 PM
Indeed, in (A)D&D 1.0 Rangers cannot possess more than they can carry on their person and mount, being expected to donate all remaining wealth to worthy causes. Paladins are similarly restricted, in the sense that they are prohibited from retaining wealth beyond what is sufficient to live modestly and pay henchmen, men at arms and servitors or to construct and maintain a small castle. They also cannot have more than ten magical items and are expected to pay a tithe to a religious institution.

MethodicalMeat
2007-04-16, 08:17 PM
In my game? He just bough a one-way ticket to 1st level fighter-hood.

Alex Knight
2007-04-17, 12:55 AM
Ok, as someone who thinks he does a good job playing a paladin, I have to say, my reaction would be the same as the one in question.

Fact: We're in the bloody Tomb of Horrors. We've already found several insanely lethal traps, and we know that a lich or some other powerful undead lives here.

So the druid thinks the gemstone is cursed, and I, being confident of my paladin powers to protect me, pick it up.

Now, the GM takes me aside and says something like "the gemstone lets you know that it can grant its bearer a wish."

Let's think about this statement for a second. I'm a paladin. I have absolutely NO ability to figure out what kind of arcane magic is what. I don't have detect magic, I don't have identify, I don't have anything other than "detect evil", and I figure using that power is kinda pointless in the current surroundings.

So, I'm sitting in an evil tomb full of really diabolical traps. What are the odds that this gemstone is another trap!?! Pretty darn good, imho.

Now, I know I can resist the urge to use the thing, but can the rest of my party? Why take the chance? When we get back to town we can have the wizard ID it properly, and then we can take care of it. Until then, nobody needs to be tempted.

And that would be *my* reasoning as a paladin in that situation.

Zincorium
2007-04-17, 03:36 AM
Alex Knight, here's the crux of the matter:

Would you lie, openly, to a person who not only is your traveling companion but brought this possibly cursed gem to your attention in the first place?

If you don't trust them, then you shouldn't be down in the bloody Tomb of Horrors, as you put it. It's that simple.

You should be able to explain the situation as you see it to the person you trust, and you'd have a greater amount of resources in terms of knowledge and experience to bring to bear on the problem.

In no case do you lie without good reason. There is no clear cut good reason to lie in this instance. A simple "I found a gem, it might be cursed, let me hold onto it until we reach town and can find out for sure." should solve the whole problem you suggest. If the druid then attempts to take it from you by force, you can probably smite him (well, not literally) in good conscience, as he's let his greed overcome his common sense and friendship, thus becoming the aggressor.

Alex Knight
2007-04-17, 08:35 PM
Well, my response to the druid would have been:
"Nothing to worry about."

And yes, I trust the druid, of course I trust him. But trusting him with my life, and trusting his restraint when presented with a supposed wishing gemstone are two different things.

Besides, I intend for it to be divvied up with the rest of the loot after the tomb, so why risk the chance that my faith in his self-restraint is misplaced?

CASTLEMIKE
2007-04-17, 11:27 PM
another paladin question

whilst delving the tomb of horrors, our druid recently came across a mysterious gem. he was afraid to touch it, believing that it may have been cursed/evil etc. The paladin offered his services and retrieved it. he pocketed the gem, which turned out to be a gem of Wish, and when asked about it, he did not answer. he obviously wanted the gem for himself, and stole outright from our party, completely disregarding the party contract which he signed. should the lose his paladin-hood over this?

sorry our party has three paladins and uses the default alignment system. as a result we run into these obstacles fairly often.

semi-relevant information.
he is an lg paladin.
the druid was standing in an adjacent square
the thing glows.
after the dm whispered in the pally's ear, explaining the power of the gem, the druid asked "what do you have there?" and recieved a reply of "nothing"
the party charter states that loot is distributed first by party role, second by appraised value and third by the principle of hey who wants this?


This is the "Tomb of Horrors" a Killer Dungeon and there is to little information to make a decision IMO. As I recall in Supervised Tournament Play under DMs using the module No One survived to defeat Acerek and many never found him.

I do remember that Paladins were the Most Effective PCs against Acerek and this party has 3 Paladins ((Out of How Many? 4 with a Druid?)).

What exactly did the DM whisper in the paladin's ear? (Just tell them "Nothing" when they ask after I get done whispering to you and have the paladin pocket the gem breeds paranoia in that dungeon and most other dungeons)

What is the glowing gem in reality? (A worthless "Gem" that glows a little bit maybe less than a cantrip or a candle is "Nothing" to a High Level 12+ party just a Glowing rock not even comparable to a Light cantrip or Continual Flame Gem)

Again how many PCs in the party?

What are the party member alignments, levels and how long have they been playing together?

IMO it is tough playing paladins in most campaigns as many hold the paladin to higher standards than the Three Sentence Alignment description and the Two sentence Code of Conduct in the PHB the RAW cuts the paladin a little slack with the lying.

At this point we still do not know if the paladin lied to the druid a Code Violation according to the PHB but what is the Code in their Campaign?

We really don't know what the Gem is yet so we don't don't know if the paladin cheated the "party" out of a Wish Gem.

Any PC can use a Wish Gem.

IMO in the middle of an adventure the LG Paladin is a very prudent choice to be the Caretaker of such a Treasure (Not a Rogue (Even a NG or CG Rogue) and Not a Primary Spellcaster because of their alignments and existing spellcasting abilities).

Remember the DM whispered to the paladin PC player instead of just telling them what it was which seemed out of character to the Druid player. The paladin player may just be doing as instructed as per the DM. (He could be Cursed and a good role player).

The Paladin could be holding it for safekeeping during the adventure. Using it to aid the party as necessary to survive the adventure until divvying up treasure after the adventure. The Paladin would be abiding by the first rule of the charter. He took the risk

(Maybe the Gem is Really Cursed and the DM had the Gem be the Paladin's God Ordering him to hold onto the Gem until it was needed for the Final Battle in case it is needed to defeat Acerek when it Won't Work and Will Waste a Few Combat Rounds Having the Paladin One of the Most Effective PCs against Acerek Performing Useless Actions. Maybe the DM is just Creating Party Tension to Make the Party Worry and make a better adventure for them.

Gamebird
2007-04-18, 09:59 AM
I wish the original poster would come back and clarify the situation.