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somethingrandom
2017-06-18, 10:24 AM
I am planning for an upcoming session in which the players encounter a low level cleric who has been sent to the blessing ceromany of a nobals daughter he is the lowest ranking cleric around. this is intended as an insult and will almost certainly be taken as such. The cleric is worried he will be killed and asked the players for assistance.
I suspect my players will be unwilling to work unpaid but I also expect one of them to ask how he got the money if he offers them money?

Squiddish
2017-06-18, 10:55 AM
Have him offer something else as payment, or preferably a blend of other things. Perhaps he'll owe the party a favor?

The Glyphstone
2017-06-18, 10:55 AM
Hiring out his spellcasting services seems like a straightforward answer. Using 3.X math as an example (since your edition is unstated), even a 1st-level spell by a 1st-level caster costs 10GP, and he can cast at least 2-3 of them per day. Higher-level spells by higher-level casters bring in even more money. If he's going to a noble's ceremony, that might indicate he does side work providing magical support to the nobility who can afford such luxuries (say, a Purify Food+Drink for someone paranoid of poison).

Mechalich
2017-06-18, 11:03 AM
You can give him connections - a rich relative or a rich old priest who happens to be fond of him can easily pay the party after the adventure is over for keeping their favorite nephew/novice from getting axed.

Vitruviansquid
2017-06-18, 12:11 PM
If you are going to allow the players to say no to this guy, allow the players to say no to this guy.

You should rather than asking how to rig it so the players don't say no to him, ask how to rig it so it's okay for the players to say no to him.

Unoriginal
2017-06-18, 12:28 PM
Could say that it's his inheritance.

Vinyadan
2017-06-18, 01:07 PM
I am planning for an upcoming session in which the players encounter a low level cleric who has been sent to the blessing ceromany of a nobals daughter he is the lowest ranking cleric around. this is intended as an insult and will almost certainly be taken as such. The cleric is worried he will be killed and asked the players for assistance.
I suspect my players will be unwilling to work unpaid but I also expect one of them to ask how he got the money if he offers them money?

He can have his temple's offerings on himself, which he was bringing to a chaplain's home which is on the road. Or to the bank. (depends on how chaotic he is to give these to the PCs)

He might have decided to take revenge on his church for putting him in danger, and have just sold some properties he was to take care of as part of his work as a cleric (again, depends on how chaotic he is)

He might be poor and have just met an exceptionally generous paladin who thought of doing him some good.

He might have told the paladin he was afraid, the paladin could not help him personally because (______), so he gave him money and instructed him to use it to buy the services of some bodyguards.

The Glyphstone
2017-06-18, 02:17 PM
If you are going to allow the players to say no to this guy, allow the players to say no to this guy.

You should rather than asking how to rig it so the players don't say no to him, ask how to rig it so it's okay for the players to say no to him.

I think you're reading something into the post that isn't there. He's not trying to force the PCs to accept the quest, he's looking to fill a logical plot hole of 'how can this low-level cleric afford to hire PC adventurers as bodyguards'.

Mastikator
2017-06-18, 02:20 PM
Same way anyone in a medieval settings gets lots of money. Inheritance. It would make a hell of a lot more sense than just finding it laying around in a dungeon guarded by monsters, now that's a situation that needs justifying. A cleric with lots of money? Makes perfect sense, no need to explain.

Slipperychicken
2017-06-18, 02:38 PM
I suspect my players will be unwilling to work unpaid but I also expect one of them to ask how he got the money if he offers them money?
How about his boss pulled some strings to get him money for protection.

Maybe his organization arranged his visit as a way to expose the assailant, and are directing funds to have hired muscle defeat the would-be attacker. Having their own warriors do the job might be interpreted as an act of aggression, but when hiring outsiders for protection they could easily argue that they are impartial to faction politics and were just acting to protect the cleric.

Cisturn
2017-06-18, 02:44 PM
There could be a bunch of different reasons why he has a lot of cash on him. Here are some ideas from the top of my head of varying quality:

* The cleric in question is a noble himself, (maybe from a rival family for even more insult) so he has some cash to throw around.

* He's been given some extra cash by the church explicitly to hire bodyguards.

* If not the church, maybe a higher level friend saw the danger in sending such a low level priest to bless the ceremony and gave the cleric some money so he wouldn't get killed.

* This is the cleric's life savings, he's been saving it up for years, and he's willing to give it all to the PCs if they keep him safe.

* One of the reasons the cleric isn't well regarded is because he's a notorious gambler. Thankfully he won big last night and he's willing to spend it to keep him save. If he survives this mission you could have this cleric be a recurring NPC at bars and casinos and the like.

* The church itself is very wealthy, so all of their priests have a sizable amount of wealth on them.

* Clerics get paid a lot in this order, so he just has a lot of gold to spend.

* The cleric is angry at his assignment, so he stole a holy relic and sold it off for some spare gold.

* The cleric stole the money from the church coffers.

* The cleric can't offer gold, but he can offer them cheap healing for the rest of the game.

* The nobles already paid for the blessing, so the cleric is actually paying the PCs with that gold. This could be done either with or without the churches consent.

* The cleric recently healed someone very important, and received a large personal donation. This cleric though has taken a vow of poverty and can't use the money himself.

* The cleric has taken a loan from the local crime element. This can be used as a later plot point too.

* The cleric isn't well regarded because he mostly treats commoners. From their donations he has a kings ransom in coppers and the occasional silver piece. The PCs can have it all if they help them, but they may need to rent a wagon to carry it all.

Honest Tiefling
2017-06-18, 07:15 PM
He doesn't. If he does, the players are likely to kill him and take the money anyway. He could offer money from the church or from his own inheritance, as was mentioned but need to retrieve it. He could have a side-business as well, which might explain why he's a crummy cleric.

He could also offer healing services in the future, which might be good for any combat-oriented party.

Through he...Could simply not show up. I don't think the church that sent him as an insult is going to be terribly happy he got a massive amount of people at the party killed instead of offending them. Unless he intends to drag around the PCs as some sort of body guard, but I doubt the noble is really going to let a minor cleric bring in several dangerously armed men without much of an explanation...

RazorChain
2017-06-18, 10:16 PM
Same way anyone in a medieval settings gets lots of money. Inheritance. It would make a hell of a lot more sense than just finding it laying around in a dungeon guarded by monsters, now that's a situation that needs justifying. A cleric with lots of money? Makes perfect sense, no need to explain.

I actually like that idea....this is D&D after all. That low level cleric found the money lying in a dungeon just like everybody else.


If I ever run D&D again there will be a clear divide between the newly rich yuppies that have been dungeon delving and the old money.

Mark Hall
2017-06-19, 09:42 AM
Also, it might depend on his religion. I could see a priest of a deity of commerce having a fair amount of money available (or acquirable), even though they are insultingly low ranked.

CharonsHelper
2017-06-19, 10:03 AM
He doesn't. If he does, the players are likely to kill him and take the money anyway.

What sort of players do you run with!?

Berenger
2017-06-19, 10:21 AM
During the barbarian invasion / civil war / reign of the heretic king 300 years ago, the treasury of his church and several valuable eucharistic objects were buried in a fake tomb for safekeeping. The priest at that time died at the hands of the enemies of the faith, but his current successor managed to decipher the code that martyr left in his copy of the holy scripture and dug up the treasure - he secretly spent most of it for charity when his parish fell on hard times, but there is still [appropriate amount] left over. Gives you a chance to interlace a bit of setting history and the characters gain a contact that dabbles in riddles and codebreaking for a hobby, might come in useful one day.

TheCountAlucard
2017-06-19, 10:30 AM
Maybe the presence or absence of material wealth isn't so firmly coupled to metaphysical notions of character power in some worlds?

I mean, we're presently living in a world where you can be a billionaire and still can't warp reality even a little with magical spells.

Telonius
2017-06-19, 11:24 AM
Two birds, one stone: the Cleric worships Olidammara. Revealing his source of income is probably against his religion.

Mark Hall
2017-06-19, 11:38 AM
He doesn't.

Variation on this: He doesn't. He MIGHT, if he gets through this, but he's gotta get through it, first.

He will not be clear about this.

DaveOTN
2017-06-19, 12:04 PM
If you don't like any of the above answers, a classic fantasy trope would be that the cleric doesn't actually have much money to pay the adventurers...but he has a tattered old treasure map, given to him in exchange for showing kindness to a dying old man. He's not adventurous enough to seek out the treasure himself, but he would give it to the right party in exchange for some protection at this event.

For added points, the map can be written in invisible ink, only visible under the light of a waning crescent moon, or whatever, in a way that gives the more evil-minded PCs a reason to actually help him out rather than just lift it off of him.

Nifft
2017-06-19, 02:25 PM
I am planning for an upcoming session in which the players encounter a low level cleric who has been sent to the blessing ceromany of a nobals daughter he is the lowest ranking cleric around. this is intended as an insult and will almost certainly be taken as such. The cleric is worried he will be killed and asked the players for assistance.
I suspect my players will be unwilling to work unpaid but I also expect one of them to ask how he got the money if he offers them money?

* The Cleric is at least level 5, and has been tasked with quietly casting a few cure disease spells on various family members to cover their past indiscretions ... possibly including the bride. This will naturally generate a rather large fee.

* The Cleric will be able to requisition the money from the temple upon his safe return.

* The payment comes in advance, but it isn't gold -- it's tokens of divine intervention. If the PCs are jerks to the Cleric, then the divine intervention effects are cruel to the PCs, because the gods do not forget.

Aeson
2017-06-19, 03:43 PM
If you don't want to have to come up with a reason for why the cleric has some money to spend on bodyguards, you could also look into giving the party other reasons to want to go to the event than just "the cleric paid me to be his or her bodyguard." Maybe the party needs to meet with someone who they couldn't normally approach but might be able to meet at the party while under the guise of being part of the cleric's entourage. Maybe the party has reasons of their own for wanting to get onto the noble's estate (free one of the noble's prisoners, steal something from the estate, investigate rumors of untoward happenings on the estate grounds, etc) and the cleric represents a convenient, legitimate reason for them to be able to move around within the estate. Maybe the cleric is a bit on the shady side and will use his or her influence - and, by extension, that of his or her Church - to cover some of the party's less legal activities while on the estate. After all, the Church and its representatives - the cleric and his or her entourage - are clearly above any suspicion of wrongdoing and it is positively insulting that anyone might dare so much as to inspect the bags of the Church's representatives, let alone detain them for questioning over the disappearance of (something stolen by the party during the event).

Honest Tiefling
2017-06-19, 03:51 PM
What sort of players do you run with!?

The best laid plans of mice and men often go awry because someone rolled really badly so they had to go to Plan F for Fire.

Also, perhaps the cleric was gifted with several healing potions and useful items. They wanted their poor cleric to survive the insult, else they'd probably just nuke the noble's house with holy fire. Or, this was a cause to have legal grounds to nuke the noble's house with holy fire. Either way, they need to either keep the guy alive, or make it look like they TRIED to keep him alive. The cleric can pay them with the healing items or other magical items.

As suggested, one of these items could be a plot macguffin. He's been studying it while others dismiss it, despite the fact that the item resists divination magic to determine it. If the cleric dies, then the party is likely to loot it and accidentally activate it.

Mark Hall
2017-06-19, 04:59 PM
The best laid plans of mice and men often go awry because someone rolled really badly so they had to go to Plan F for Fire.


"We're adventurers... we all have 'arson' as a secondary skill by default."

Dalinale
2017-06-19, 07:05 PM
A couple of answers:

- The cleric has been entrusted with a decent sized lump of change by his immediate superiors for the purpose of spreading the faith on his travels, which he is assumed to be doing while he's been stuck at court for the last few weeks.

- The cleric was previously being paid by the higher church authorities for the mundane jobs of several people, which is partially the reason for this 'reward'.

- He's particularly adept at gambling; hence, he's embarrassed if he's questioned about the source of his funds, given his current status.

- His teacher, a formerly prominent cleric, gave him a hefty amount of money on his death.

- Moth of his funds are actually sourced from the belongings of a former paladin of the church who's remains were placed under his safekeeping; accordingly, he could offer some choice magic items along with money.

- The cleric attended and ministered the last days of a prominent, brutal, mostly unloved duke, and served as one of the few constants in the unloved noble's life before he passed. The cleric's name was, to his great surprise, added to the greater will, and a substantial sum was given to him directly. Due to the reputation the duke had, advertising that he was close enough to him to get a large sum on his passing would be alarming for many, and could create political problems.

goto124
2017-06-20, 04:32 AM
For additional plot points, the cleric could claim to get the money from one source ("I spent years saving up for a rainy day, and that rain has come") while his money actually came from a different, shadier, source.

RazorChain
2017-06-20, 07:38 AM
The question is why shouldnt he? He is part of organized religion where the deity really exists! If religions can scam bucketloads of money from people on belief alone then think how much they can make when they have proof!

He should literally be swimming in money!

GreatWyrmGold
2017-06-21, 08:17 AM
The question is why shouldnt he? He is part of organized religion where the deity really exists! If religions can scam bucketloads of money from people on belief alone then think how much they can make when they have proof!

He should literally be swimming in money!
I'm so glad I'm not the only person who thought this. From indulgences to televangelists (and probably stuff I'm not familiar with because it's not part of the culture or history I grew up with), religions have managed to find excellent ways to finance their fancy houses of worship even without healing potions and undead-turning.

Vogie
2017-06-21, 02:06 PM
The compensation isn't given by the cleric themselves, but rather the noble. The cleric was summoned, and stated if they feel like they need bodyguards, that said noble will pay up to X gold for their trouble.

The cleric doesn't have the money, but will be dropping by a series of other locations picking up tithes from point a to point b

While this cleric isn't high level, their family is rich.

The compensation will be paid as a series of blessings, enchantments, and magical relics.

The religion is a state-sponsored Emperor-worship-esque scenario, and clerics are the tax collectors. It's normal for high level clerics, who draw a significant salary, to either not have to travel with the funds or finance extensive armored-car-equivalent protections. Low level clerics, however, are expected to do so as a sort of combination of "take your lumps", "start in the mailroom" and "potentially deadly hazing".

The cleric has a dark past (tm) that may include gambling, moonshining, or even adventuring - They tired of being a murderhobo, and recently joined the order as penance.

SomeNerd
2017-06-21, 10:34 PM
Playing off the idea of a rich family, the Cleric's father is a famed Paladin of the same church, who is currently away acting as a missionary to distant lands. Said paladin's rival is expecting the cleric to die on this mission, with the intent of manipulating the paladin in some way (starting a holy war against the nobility, perhaps. Or possibly the church is mostly composed of elves, and the rival is aiming for a holy war against the humans (or vice-versa) ).

Or, in more general terms, the cleric is being used as a pawn in some greater scheme, and one of the people opposing that scheme would be the one providing the money.

----

Some potential unrelated possibilities...

Family heirlooms

The Cleric is friends with a gold dragon, who would be willing to part with some of his horde in exchange for his friend's safety.

He's a liar; he doesn't actually have any money at all, he's just desperate for protection.

His church has a sect of monks who brew some sort of high-end alcoholic drink. He... 'liberated' a few high-quality bottles, on the logic that if he's going to die, he might as well die drunk.

Dappershire
2017-06-22, 03:02 AM
Perhaps he was a merchant before becoming a cleric.

DRD1812
2017-06-22, 11:15 AM
Second sons often go into the clergy. He comes from a wealthy family.

denthor
2017-06-22, 01:05 PM
How much are we talking about? 1,000 gp he has on him in gem form or a really nice necklace.

He has craft brewing he has a wagon an a lot of beer friar Tuck

I like the gambling idea as well

Herobizkit
2017-06-23, 04:54 AM
Someone paid the cleric to show up, knowing it was an insult to the Nobles in question. Who *really* hired him?

FreddyNoNose
2017-06-23, 01:59 PM
BINGO. He is running a church bingo.

Nifft
2017-06-23, 02:00 PM
BINGO. He is running a church bingo.

... and he was the only literate person in the room.

What a scam.

FreddyNoNose
2017-06-23, 02:46 PM
... and he was the only literate person in the room.

What a scam.
He wasn't Lawful Good, he was awful at it.

GreatWyrmGold
2017-06-23, 04:29 PM
... and he was the only literate person in the room.
Either there were a lot of barbarians at Bingo Night, or Faeurn got a lot more historical when I wasn't looking.

FreddyNoNose
2017-06-23, 07:55 PM
Either there were a lot of barbarians at Bingo Night, or Faeurn got a lot more historical when I wasn't looking.

Barbarian Bingo Night!

They might get confused if you call out I8...

hifidelity2
2017-06-27, 05:49 AM
Second sons often go into the clergy. He comes from a wealthy family.

Exactly

Have him from a Noble House

1st Son to inherit
2nd Son for the Church
3rd Son into the Army
4th onwards……..

(2nd & 3rd can be swapped depending on the relative power of the two institutions)

I my games both clerics and MU’s rise to political power is not dependant on their actual magic power. I have had the “Pope equivalent” being only a 2nd level cleric (he was the 3rd son of the king)

If you want the snub to be more important (and something the party can get involved in) it could be from a noble faction that is against the house he has been sent to

Knaight
2017-06-27, 06:27 AM
Most of the obvious options have already been covered (second/third son of a noble, merchant family, the church is rolling in dough). Some slightly less obvious options:

Repentant Sinner. It's an archetype for a reason, and if the cleric used to be a highwayman that explains the money just fine.
Loans. The cleric is really worried about being assassinated, so they borrowed a bunch of money from a bank to pay for bodyguards, hoping to be able to pay it back later.
Favors. The cleric has saved the life of someone who has real money, and thus was owed a big favor. They called it in for bodyguard services.
Monastery Money. The cleric has been assumed to be a priest thus far, but he could be a monk, and there were some cottage industries that made some monasteries a lot of money. Alcohol has been well covered, but just copying books is worth something.
Secret Lover. In a standard chivalric romance fashion, the civilian has a secret lover who admires them from afar, loves them chastely, and who represents a forbidden temptation. They left a bag of money on the road a bit ahead of the cleric, possibly with a note cryptically hinting that it was they who left it. Said person is basically obligated to be a knight of some sort.
Divine Intervention. The god the cleric follows decided to work in mysterious ways to protect their cleric. They were given a vision that led them to a treasure, enough to pay for protection during the event.

Astralia123
2017-06-27, 07:19 AM
Let's say it is totally reasonable for this cleric to be corrupted. He might, in a sense, deserve such a way of death, as his superiors might have found him too covetous and dishonorable that they decide to get rid of him (either to "cleanse" the church or get him out of their own way).
You can even have the PCs discover this later, which can be an interesting twist.
Of course, unless you have planned otherwise.


Other people have provided quite a lot of alternative ways to solve this.