Alas, Brother Thaddius, I knew you well!
Ah, Brother Thaddius...
To bring you up to date on our DemonWars weekly game: Brother Thaddius was my character, an Abellican monk, Disciple of St. Avelyn (gemstone magic user). The thing about him, though, is that his sentiments lay more with Marcalo De'Unnero, the Heretic, rather than with Avelyn, Sainted and with the reformed Church being modeled after his beneficent and generous spirit.
De'Unnero believed that the gemstones were the property of the Church alone. End of story. And also, that the ability to use them was a big part of the measure of a man.
Thaddius agreed, and those members of the adventuring group who could not use the stones (Affinity score too low) were, to him, meat shields and little more. He also had no use for the rogues among the party, as they were not Abellicans, and so, to him, worthless.
Thaddius's life changed abruptly when one of his lightning bolts killed the group's striker (Disciple of St. Bruce - an open-handed fighter who serves in the game as a major damage dealer). Wracked with guilt, Thaddius, despite his low Endurance and pathetic Strength, saw this accident as a sign that he should take up the role of Striker, in no small part to prove to the others that gemstones were greater than physical attributes. With his magical training, he would outdo the powerhouse warriors, so he believed.
As he acquired his next level fo experience, Thaddius began to train in the techniques of St. Bruce, and combining those martial abilities with his gemstone enhancements, became fairly effective in his new role. he wasn't the most potent offensive fighter in the group, but combining that with his ability to use a soul stone and throw healing about, or even restore some Balance to himself and the others, he became valuable in many ways.
In a brawl with a band of goblins in a wide subterranean chamber, Brother Thaddius really shined. He seemed everywhere at once, leaping from battle line to battle line (we have 8 people playing, so it got kind of crazy). He stood beside two other monks (wisely close to the Disciple of St. Belfour, who could help block attacks aimed his way) to wear down one side of the goblin line, then leaped across the room to join the rogues, soul stone in hand (dealing out healing and Balance to the deadly rogues).
The outcome was not in doubt, the team overwhelming the monsters, but at the back of the room, some goblin females were escaping up a natural chimney.
Can't have that!
Thaddius leaped across the turned-table barricades...you see, he had found a sword set with two rubies, capable of dropping an Empowered Fireball, and he possessed a Serpentine which would allow him to shield himself from the blast.
So over he rushed, and BOOM!, dropped his spell, and dropped a number of goblins as well.
But...did I mention they were women? You see, there's a strange "truth" to my gaming sessions, one that's been around for decades now: don't EVER mess with female monsters. I don't know why, I don't know how (maybe it's because I have five older sisters...yeah, yeah, source material for Menzoberranzan), but whenever female monsters show up, they kick the crap out of the adventuring party. It's a given. The dice don't lie.
So a pair of goblins survived my fireball, and promptly dropped me (Critical hits, both) to the floor, then rushed to escape up the chimney.
In Reformation, when you're knocked down, you make % rolls to determine where you go from there. A high roll, and you can recover, and even wake up and get back up. An above average roll can stabilize you in your downed state until help can arrive. A bad roll will inflict another wound (which affects further rolls!), and a really bad roll means, well, you die.
Endurance bonuses and minuses affect these rolls. Thaddius was a sickly guy...Endurance score of 2 (on a scale of 2-12)...
So when I rolled 01% on my first roll after getting knocked down, I really didn't have to look at the chart.
It was disconcerting to see so many of my adventuring companions (sons, nephews, and supposed friends) cheering so happily at my demise; haven't seen that since Oliver deBurrows got squished by an ogre.
So, like Oliver, that reaction convinced me that Brother Thaddius must live on by the pen...
ps. Did I mention that the novella I'm (almost done) writing for DemonWars: Reformation is entitled "The Education of Brother Thaddius"?