A couple of ground rules about Vows of Death
- They must be sworn before a religious and legal authorities, and witnesses of the lay populace.
- They must be grammatically and existentially feasible.
- They must invoke some higher or greater power as guarantor.
- They must be accomplished within a month of swearing them.
- You must name a specific, named instance of a person(s) or creature(s) you intend to slay.
- A glowing sigil will take root in the flesh of your right-hand palm as contract.
- Striking the named target will deal 20d6 damage.
- Failure to complete the deed will result in divine retribution by the invoked guarantor, usually in the form of 20d6 damage.
- Anyone can swear a vow. Anyone.
- You do not need to be sober or sensible while making a vow.
Throw these in your carousing table if you want. Or not. I'm not your dad.
D8 Vows made while Drunk or Otherwise Come to be Regretted
- you wake to a great excitement in the village. It seems you got very merry and woke the shire reeve up at 3am along with the local padre and you made several binding oaths to uproot the Great Goblin Root in the deepwoods. There are now faint but unmistakable sigils of divine perport faintly luminscening on your right-hand palm. Lots of back-patting and nods of approval follow. They really think you're gonna do it. Oh god oh fuck.
- in defiance of the traditional courtesies, you neglected to dedicate your vow to a deity. Instead, and this is a quote, you swore "by my big blue balls" while making aggressive thrusting gestures. It was, you are assured, extraordinarily funny. However the sigils are unmistakably fixed - you are indebted to your own gonads. What testicular torments will they exact should you fail on this quest?
- Why did they chase you from town with torch and truncheon? Had you not sworn in front of all goodly laws, gods, and men to uphold the good name of the town Stoatgart and reduce to rubble their hated ancestral enemies the people of Thentweed? Oh that was Thentweed? Bugger. Time to make friendly with the people of Stoatgart, it seems you are their uninvited champion.
- It was awfully noble of you to swear on threat of divine retribution to return the True King of Dunstone to power, but in actual fact the chap on the throne is already the true king o- oh my those sigils are glowing quite verdantly, aren't they. Hm. How many people have you shown this to? Oh dear, you think you might have started something political.
- the sigils are clumsy, scribbled, and barely glow. You realise that swearing to "knock that prick Hemburt on his fat arse" is not usually the kind of thing one goes in for deadly vows for, but he really was asking for it. To be honest, everyone is surprised the ritual worked. You suspect something divine and all-powerful is having a joke at the expense of your poor old hungover self.
- Gordon. You said you were going to kill Gordon. The bandit chief? The one-eyed chap with the nasty scar? It was going to be a bit tough but not insurmountable, and the mountain-men have gone unharried for too long! You were going to be the town hero. Damn your stutter! What the fuck is a "Gorgon" anyway?
- Well, we caught him red-handed. Just as we thought - dressed up in furs with a funny mask made from a taxidermy badger. Turns out there was no Werewolf of Wiltby Moor after all! I suppose the vow you made is null and void then? ...what do you mean it's still glowing?
- It was a great comfort when you swore before the king and bishop and assembled estates of the county to find and slay the lich. It was, admittedly, less comforting when the vow refused to take until you said you'd kill the liches.