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Moral Conundrums for Witch Hunters

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#1 Akora



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Posted 11 February 2013 - 08:11 PM

So I have a party member who is a recently minted Witch Hunter. He has played the role very well, keeping his identity mostly secret and relying on it only when necessary. His first official duty was to arrest and execute a known murderer who the Party actually knew and had a grudge with. He carried it out in great RP fashion, trying to take pleasure in it but ultimately being revolted by the excessive violence required.

As time has gone on, he's settled into the role and I haven't really challenged him yet with a nice moral dilemma. I am not an expert on the WH world, so I wanted to see if you guys could provide a few possible situations I could put him in that would test his moral compass vs. his loyalty to the Temple. My first thought would be him encountering a practicing, unsanctioned female using magic to heal soldiers. His duty would require that he arrest and/or kill her yet he's the type of character that would hesitate to punish someone for doing something noble like healing people.


#2 Yepesnopes



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Posted 11 February 2013 - 08:46 PM

Published adventures like the Witch Song or Gathering the Storm will provide some moral dilemas to him. It can be interesting to see how does he solve them.



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#3 Akora



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Posted 12 February 2013 - 08:56 AM

Actually I was hoping to avoid using published adventure material as much as possible so that I can save it for when I am busy with work and can't devote much time to developing a story. I will take a look at them for ideas though, thanks!


#4 Angelic Despot

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Posted 12 February 2013 - 10:01 AM

I think you've come up with a pretty good dilema yourself there.

The classic one, I would say, is to have a loyal citizen of the Empire 'infected' by chaos, and mutate.   Perhaps something fairly minor and/or harmless.   All of a sudden, a friend/colleague/family member - who still has the same personality and same ethics as before, has now, through no fault of their own, become a 'criminal' deserving of death!

#5 bladerunner_35



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Posted 12 February 2013 - 07:27 PM

Have him/her by chance be dragged into a local witch hunt, by an (in)famous Witch Hunter that outranks your pc. A village is to be put to the test and even though there is no conclusive evidence the npc Witch Hunter orders the pc to help with the "investigation" and carry out long interrogations and executions, just in case.

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#6 valvorik



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Posted 14 February 2013 - 12:37 AM

The Hangman's Daughter (a novel) has a similar situation.  Its the first in a series of mystery novels set in 15th or so century in Bavaria (so good grist for warhammer).  The Hangman is the executioner and "torturer" and is to put an old woman to the question for suspicion of witchcraft, using it to kill a child.  The local authority wants a quick confession and execution before "witch fearing craze" gets loose and everyone is accusing everyone else of witchcraft (which happened some time ago in the town leading to many deaths).  The hangman doesn't believe her guilty and he and his daughter have to solve the mystery before he must torture the old woman, though he too fears the consequence of witch fear spreading.

Part of what's nice about that is that rather than the populace being cowed by a witch hunter, they are like a mob and "they are the real danger, though to themselves if only they understood the outcome of spreading witch craze".

#7 nickbrown



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Posted 14 February 2013 - 12:48 PM

My GM presented a difficult moral dillema a few sessions ago. Long story short, we came across a subtly deformed newborn baby with its mother from the whorehouse pleading for us to take it into the Drakwald Forest away from the Witchhunters. It was a difficult decision but we agreed. As we approached the area we were to drop the baby off at, we had visions of a dark force approaching. One of our party members did not want to leave the baby to the elements and decided to kill it to prevent its suffering but as the dagger came down, some kind of force stopped him (either a magical shield or control of will, we're not entirely sure).


The longer the baby was left there, the more visions we had of dark clouds of energy growing and growing. My character deduced that if this unknown dark force was to gain access to the baby then some serious bad things were sure to happen and decided that the only option was to kill the baby. His shield thrust failed too, so he picked the baby up and had to try face to face by twisting its neck. As a PC I was really stressed about this, suffice to say my character received a ton of stress too. The neck twisting didn't work either. The clouds were growing and growing and we started collecting corruption from our now frequent corruption resilience rolls. My character then threw the baby as far as he could and we ran like crazy. We haven't yet found out if the baby survived or whether we thwarted the mysterious force.