Way of The Twice Martyred (5e Subclass)
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Way of the Twice Martyred
The Way of The Twice Martyred holds the honored title of the most eminent and eclectic of monastic traditions practiced within the Monastery of The Yellow Rose Organisation (as described in the "Sword Coast Adventure's Guide"). Effectively, surpassing and encompassing in mastery all other esoteric martial forms currently embraced by the Ascetic Order solemnly dedicated to the worship of the Merciful Protector Deity of Ilmater. Its proscribed higher learning teachings (rumored to be the stuff of legend) are closely guarded by the leading ranked docents and intended for the exclusive tutelage of very select deserving pupils graced with the mandatory prerequisites in quickness, fortitude and temperament aptitude.
- Dire Consequences for the Unready
- For, if somehow -by some rare happenstance of scrutiny dereliction on behalf of the overseeing senior monks- an unsuspectingly wanting student winds up unknowingly being extensively subjected to the incredibly endurance taxing mental, physical and psychical techniques of this elite monkish discipline, the inadvertent consequences can turn out being extremely dire (even lethal) for the unfortunate individual in question. Not only, will he no doubt fail to fully grasp many of the fundamentals of this Way's even more basic tenets, but, likewise, risks in the process to becoming so severely overwhelmed and depleted mentally, physically and spiritually, so much so, that the unbearable ensuing strain will end up inevitably taking a disastrously tragic toll on the equilibrium of his Self: Indeed, the resulting critical inner imbalance will typically rapidly illustrate itself in one of two diametrically opposed but, both equally insidious manifestations which can eventually prove deadly for the pitiful novitiate.
- The first consists of a fiery cascading internal chain reaction which will progressively tend to overheating his vital energy, slowly causing in him increasingly agonizing bodily afflictions which, if not soon properly remedied, could eventually culminate in a spontaneous self-combustion fatal event; leaving behind in the person's stead nothing but residue of powdery ash (along with perhaps a few surviving partially scorched extremities of his appendages in the mix).
- While the second one rather consists of a frigidly cascading internal chain reaction which will progressively tend towards overchilling his vital energy, slowly causing in him progressively more profound cognitive afflictions which, if not soon properly remedied, could eventually culminate in a spontaneous self-crystallizing fatal event; this time around, leaving behind in the person's stead nothing but residue powdery ice (along with perhaps a few surviving partially thawed extremities from his appendages in the mix).
In both of these instances, death is final for the ill-fated victim, with not even the possibility of resurrection save for the intercession by a Minor or Greater Deity.
- Broken Beginnings
- Furthermore, it's worth noting, that an unusually disproportionate number of the graduating disciples of this Path, originally arose from very humble beginning; ofttimes, stemming from the very dredges of society and having first arrived at the monastery utterly destitute -grievously broken in body, mangled in mind and shattered in spirit- having nowhere else left to go, desperately seeking protective solace from the merciless Outside World which has forsaken them. As such, upon entering in the abbey's service, these heavily chiped out flawed diamonds in the rough habitually bare the infamous distinction of initially being counted amongst the most unsuitable of recruits. Considered haplessly inept due to their debilitating training advancement impairments chiefly precipitated by a very pronounced Unevenness of Being, itself linked to their yet unresolved physical, psychological and spiritual heinous ordeals they sustained prior to enlisting. Therefore, these outwardly ineffectual novices are usually -at first, second and even third glance- quickly written off as hopelessly bereft of any worthwhile prowess on account of their seemingly irredeemable lack in harmony of body, clarity of mind, and serenity of soul; three imperative attributes needed to attain the proper self-control to proficiently master any of the mystical monastic ways. Customarily, in the long run, these previously falsely perceived irreformable rejects end up, outshining almost all of their formerly more adept classmates in terms of battle prowess as they gradually overcome their deeply rooted traumas for their genuine worth to finally become apparent. However, many a times, they might take such a long interim before exhibiting even the slightest spark of the vast promise they hold within -solidly entombed by their torturous past- that they would of assuredly found themselves promptly relegated to the abbey's ranks of staff workers where their true potential would remain forever dormant and undiscovered. That is, if it wasn't for none other than the Grand Master of Flowers direct intervening. Truly, the abbot plays an intensely critical role in the discovery of these oft extremely inconspicuously deserving candidates as he's frequently subtly aided in his search by guiding divine signs provided by Illmater the Crying God's Anointed Herald Himself, Saint-Sollars the Twice Martyred; former Head of the Monastery of The Yellow Rose who twice sacrificed his life for the greater good, deeds for which he attained, following his second martydom, the status of Sainthood and, as such, is known as the original founder of the Way of The Twice Martyred, the monastic tradition which in effect bares his name.
As such, once inconspicuously singled out, all intended hopefuls undergo unbeknownst to them -between their second and their third year of recruitment- a subtle assessment of their fortitude of mind, body and spirit through a grueling set of trials of which they must prevail, prior to even being considered deserving of induction in this said tradition.
Frequently, in hindsight, these diamond in the rough individuals are not even entirely sure themselves as to what precisely might of led them to even set course for the Yellow Rose Monastery in the first place.
For the most part, when pressed, they almost all describe having had a sort of inkling that they might of been guided by perhaps a higher power. Some of them, going as far as expressing serious doubts in ever having been able to even reach the Yellow Rose in the first place, if it weren't for some impossibly fortuitous happenstance or for some integral aid provided by a passing mysterious traveler during some crucial moment along their arduous journey.
Within the highest circles of the faithful, the Patron Saint of the Yellow Rose is known for being notoriously predisposed to routinely meddle relating to matters of great import to the Order. Most notably, closest to his heart seems to be, the physical, mental and spiritual development of novice monks primed to accede to the ascetic secrets of the present monastic tradition which bares his name: The profound connection which the Saint apparently establishes with them from even prior to their official choosing, allegedly persists, not only, throughout their formative training and initiate readying years, but, moreover, well beyond their schooling concluded; their celestial guardian keeping a watchful eye over them throughout the entirety of their lives. Ostensibly, over the past few centuries, numerous recorded witness accounts have emerged of some of these honored acolytes having been spontaneously blessed -during their bleakest moments of despair- with unbided vital heavenly aid in the form of mystical counsel, magical protection and restorative healing via the mediums of hallowed dreams, supernatural inspiration and, even, direct divine intervention; all attributed to the person of Saint-Sollars Twice Martyred (generally under the guise of one of his many aliases), or, either to one of his numerous servant Archons under his command acting as his intermediary, or either, in the most direst of direst of circumstances, to his God Ilmater petitioned to intercede on his behalf.
All things considered, the Saint's apparent level of personal committed investment concerning the welfare of the aforementioned graduates, is not the least bit surprising, when taking in account his intensely intimate connection to the established origins of the Twice Martyred monastic tradition which in effect bares his name: It is well-known religious canon that, following his 30 day long violently torturous martyrdom death, Saint-Sollars the (at the time, Once) Martyred ascended to Ilmater's paradisaical abode and, during his sojourn, was exclusively initiated to the mystical intricacies comprising a never seen before monastic tradition, no less, under the tutelage of The One Who Endures himself. Once his otherworldly lessons completed, the Saint, then adamantly pleaded for his heavenly master to resurrect him so as he be able to promulgate this newly procured divine knowledge amongst the ranks of the living keen to champion the defense of the defenseless, in an effort to aid them, in their battles against the forces of brutal tyranny. Ilmater, truly touched by Saint-Sollars strong sense of duty in regards to the plight of his fellow mortals, eventually acquiesced to his request on the condition that the Saint promised to hastily return by his side to serve him as his herald once his task accomplished. And so, as the story goes, according to one of the Yellow Rose Order's most ancient and revered sacred manuscripts, it's at the mouth of most frigid, pitch-black and nightmarish underground cave complex and lair to the greatest, fieriest and deadliest of all remorhazes to have ever crawled out from the White Worm glacier, where Saint-Sollars was destined to first reappear in this realm in announcement of his glorious return to life and which just happened to be right in the midst of his twelve most eminently trusted, competent and, not to mention, stunned to their very core apostles; who were nervously gathered there, riddled with self-doubt, fear and apprehension, about to embark upon a hopeless quest to slay the colossal beast plaguing the region's inhabitants with its uncannily brazen murderous rampages even for a remorhaz. A doomed venture, to be sure, the lot of them unanimously deemed in their hearts of hearts to indeed be but, nonetheless, not a one considering the option of backing down, in spite of being hopelessly overmatched with just the slimmest chance of success in defeating the mighty polar worm head on in combat. Rather they instead planned, once they located the monster, an attempt to collapse part of the glacier and bring crashing down tons of solid ice upon the abominable creature, effectively crushing it and themselves to death as they were all wholly willing to sacrifice themselves in the noble endevour, if it meant that innocents will be spared. Consequently, it is in this accursed grotto's very entrance, in the midst of the deepest bowels of unfathomable black misery and gloom, that, over the next twelve days and twelve nights, Saint-Sollars enlightened his beloved followers to the key principles of what Ilmater had meticulously taught him... And which they in turn decided to aptly baptized the Way of the Martyred in honor of their recently returned from the dead esteemed mentor. However, ensuing the latter's second tragic demise, the present monastic tradition was appropriately renamed Way of The Twice Martyred.
Thereupon, on thirteenth day, Saint-Sollars the (at the time, Once) Martyred went on to lead his cherished coterie -renewed in courage, faith and hope by his teachings- in the fiercest of remorhaz hunts Faerun has ever witnessed. One that lasted seven harrowing days and nights during which all twelve members were in the process reborn -reshaped through flaming trials and icy torments- into fearless near indestructible dreaded mortal weapons and came to be known as The Cherished Ones...
Mighty Protectors reputed to never flinch or falter in face of unbearable hardships and cruel sufferings, but rather to stand up straighter with every impacting blow, begging their assailants for more punishment while laughing in their enemies' evil faces while enduring, holding steadfast and, if need be, being full on ready to embrace martyrdom in their relentless pursuit to embody the compassionate guardianship of the oppressed and the downtrodden and take arms against the wickedness of tyrants and the malevolence of persecutors.
All monks who fervently follow the precepts of Endurance and Compassion of Ilmater the Crying God, are rigorously trained, from their time as novices, to embody their Deity's benevolence by relentlessly undergoing arduous trials meant to test the mettle of their fortitude of body, mind, and heart. These drills of agony, as they are called, help them achieve tremendous tolerance to pain in order to be able to wholeheartedly withstand great persecution and in turn take action against those who cause it notably against the weak. However, the aspirants of the Way of The Twice Martyred -elite monastic tradition originally established by the Monastery of the Yellow Rose's very own Patron Saint and the Anointed Herald of Ilmater himself, that of Saint-Sollars The Twice Martyred and which bares the latter's moniker- take the gritty vow of baring hardship to whole new levels of Selfless Sacrifice. As they unconditionally embrace one of their Church's most obscure tenets, promoting the concept of there existing but a finite amount of pain in the Universe. consequently, its adherents enthusiastically often endeavor to bring about upon themselves the most torment they possibly can, by virtue of sparing others the needless pain, all the while, relentlessly striving to one day attain martyrdom in emulation of their divine benefactor and founder. These Mighty Guardians of the oppressed are in fact known as Saint-Sollars' Cherished; reputed to never flinch or falter in face of unbearable anguish, but rather, with every landed blow, to stand even fiercer taunting their assailants in dishing out further punishment upon them, as they hold steadfast, suffer and endure, all the while, laughing wildly in their enemies' faces.
When you choosing this monastic tradition at level 3 you must possess the prerequisites of Dex 14, Wis 14 and Con 14 in order for (If later on, for any reason any of these 3 attributes were to fall below the required score for any reason, the Monk
- Saint-Sollars' Sanction
At 3rd level, this is most profound holy blessing, is initially bestowed by Saint-Sollars the Twice Martyred upon any Ilmateran disciple who decides to devote himself to the Way Of The Twice Martyred. Also called the Twice Cherished benediction and is meant as a boon for your selflessness in choosing to hold true to this uttermost harsh path; which few are the worthy to tread it and even fewer are the ones who take it. You then commence your transformation into a divine vessel as your Being is greatly enhanced to its core: As the previously inert Saint-Sollars' blood, Ilmater's tears and that of your own sweat, mixed in with the mystic inks from remorhaz bile of your Ki markings -imprinted upon your skin in a sacred ceremony subsequent to your graduation- suddenly begin to quicken and start melding much more profoundly with your body; in a dearly more intimate way in comparison with the acolytes having chosen a dedication to some of the lesser monastic traditions taught at Monastery of The Yellow Rose.
-Your hide slightly thickens, you gain +2 AC (linked to Wis) -Your reflexes somewhat sharpen, you gain +2 Dam. for your Unarmed & Monk Weapons Attacks (linked to Dex) -Your vitality lightly augments, you gain +2 Hp/ Monk level.
Your vast experience over the years, spent at the monastery, where you were taught to cope with all the different types of inflicted pain from wounds of various sorts of weapon, provides you with a mystical insight which permits you now to select (at will) at the start of each round, the one type of damage (Blunt, Slashing, Piercing) your Unarmed Attacks and Monk Weapons will inflict.
You also gain expertise in the Athletics and Stealth skills if you are already proficient, or else you just gain proficiency in the Athletics and Stealth skills. Expertise doubles your proficiency bonus for these ability checks.
As well, if you do not already have access to them, you gain the cantrips of Blade Ward and True Strike. (At the cost of 1 ki point, you are able to activate both cantrips at the same time as a bonus action).
However, the from now on you must expend one monk level hit points for every 3 Monk class levels following a long rest. if you do not have to spend one, 1d8 dice of actual hit points must be expended however your total amount of Hit points cannot be decreased below your monk level.
At 3rd level, Endurance Trait.
Saint-Sollars Blood Shield As a bonus action, you gain resistance to blunt, slashing and piecing damage attacks for 1 min. You have access to this ability Twice per long rest.
Additionally, your advanced training in techniques to repress and tolerate minor discomforts, coupled with the now activated fiery Remorhaz bile coursing through your living and slightly pulsating Ki markings, now allow you to exert some control over your body temperature, both internal and around you. Hence you can ignore any adverse effects and conditions stemming from prolonged exposure to even the most extreme of hot or cold weather (but not from cold or fire damage).
3rd level, Remorhaz Trait
White Worm's Fire Within
Due to the actuated Remorhaz bile intertwined with your being, you partly gain the sharpness of eyes and fleetness of foot of the Remorhaz:
-30 feet Darkvision (not to added to any existing Darkvision ability) if you do not already possess it. -30 feet Base Speed (not to be reduced in case of an existing exceeding Base Speed) if you do not already possess it. Additionally:
-You can chill or warm 1 pound of material for 1 hour. -You can instantly snuff out or light a candle, torch or campfire. -You can shed from your body a weak light in a 10 foot radius
3rd level Ki powers You gain the following Ki based abilities
1 Ki point cost abilities: -Cast Firebolt cantrip as bonus action and add 1d10 fire damage for each additional Ki point spent. -Cast Ray of Frost as a bonus action and add 1d8 cold damage for each additional Ki point spent. -Convert Unarmed Attack damage and Monk Weapons damage to Fire damage for 1 minute. -Convert Unarmed Attack damage and Monk Weapons damage to Cold damage for 1 minute.
2 Ki point cost abilities -Cast Jump 1st level spell -Cast Longstrider 1st level spell -Cast Expeditious Retreat 1st level spell -Cast Feather Fall 1st level spell (as a Reaction)
3rd Level Compassion Trait
if need be, being full on ready to embrace martyrdom in their relentless pursuit to embody the compassionate guardianship of the oppressed and the downtrodden and take arms against the wickedness of tyrants and the malevolence of persecutors. by Illmater the Crying God's Anointed Herald Himself, Saint-Sollars the Twice Martyred; former Head of the Monastery of The Yellow Rose who twice sacrificed his life for the greater good, deeds for which he attained, following his second martydom, the status of Sainthood and, as such, is known as the original founder of the Way of The Twice Martyred, the monastic tradition which in effect bares his name.
- The Yellow Rose is Silent
When you choose this tradition at level 3, you gain expertise in the Stealth skill if you are already proficient, or you gain proficiency in the Stealth skill. Expertise doubles your proficiency bonus for ability checks using the Stealth skill.
- The Yellow Rose Endures
At 3rd level, you can manipulate your ki to endure and overcome suffering. As a bonus action, you can spend 2 ki points to gain temporary hit points equal to your Monk level + your Constitution modifier + your Wisdom modifier.
- The Yellow Rose Remembers
Starting at 6th level, you learn techniques to transform your body to be more dangerous and resilient. You gain the following benefits.
Burning Body. As an action, you can spend ki points to transform yourself to have one or more aspects of a Remorhaz’s heated body. The following aspects are available.
- You can spend 2 ki points to make your unarmed strikes do any additional 1d10 fire damage. Any weapons or objects in your hands before the transformation are unaffected, but any object or creature you touch after the transformation takes 1d10 fire damage.
- You can spend 2 ki points to make any creature that touches or hits you with a melee attack while within 5 feet of you take 1d10 fire damage. Any equipment in your possession before the transformation is unaffected, but any object or creature you touch after the transformation takes 1d10 fire damage.
- You can spend 3 ki points to gain resistance to fire damage.
- You can spend 6 ki points to gain immunity to fire damage.
- You can spend 3 ki points to gain resistance to cold damage.
- You can spend 6 ki points to gain immunity to cold damage.
Your Burning Body lasts up to 1 minute as long as you maintain concentration. You can end the transformation on your turn as a bonus action.
Scarred Body. As an action, you can spend ki points to transform your scars into a thick hide that resists one or more damage types you have previously suffered in combat. Spend 3 ki points for each damage type you want to gain resistance to. You can only gain resistance to damage types that have previously damaged you in the past combat.
Damage types include: Acid, Bludgeoning, Cold, Fire, Force, Lightning, Necrotic, Piercing, Poison, Psychic, Radiant, Slashing, and Thunder.
Your Scarred Body lasts for 1 minute, but ends early if you are knocked unconscious. You can end the transformation on your turn as a bonus action
- The Yellow Rose Ventures
At 11th level, you become a seasoned traveller gaining these benefits.
- You gain expertise in the Survival skill if you are already proficient, or you gain proficiency in the Survival skill. Expertise doubles your proficiency bonus for ability checks using the Survival skill.
- You gain Advantage on all saving throws against Exhaustion.
- Your speed increases by 10 feet while you are not wearing armor or wielding a shield.
- The Yellow Rose Embraces
At 17th level, you become an avatar of Ilmater who can ease the suffering of others through self-sacrifice. As an action, you can spend 2 ki points and take 12d8 necrotic damage to cast Power Word Heal.