"Out of the Frying Pan" Story Hour Portal Thread (new compiled and complete PDFs + supplement game info for 2021!)

Do You Read the "Out of the Frying Pan" Story Hour?


Moderator Emeritus
Manzanita said:
OK. Perhaps you should give us the low-down on the name change, writer formerly known as Nemmerle.

We haven't gotten to the point in-game where the party changes the name from FMK yet. .. I wouldn't want to give it away. . . :cool:

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Moderator Emeritus
Frukathka said:
I'm halfway into Book 2, Part 2. I'd really love to see a compilation of all of it. This is my second favorite storyhour of all time. :cool:

Glad you enjoy it almost as much as something else (and if it is second to Sepulchrave or Sagiro, I promise not to be insulted ;))

But seriously, welcome - and feel free to bump them old threads with a comment as you finish them :)

I am still working on editing the massive word document of Book II - so the compilation is not available yet - but should be in a few weeks.


Moderator Emeritus
I have updated the Cast of Characters (NPCS) found on this thread through Session #81.

You can jump to it by clicking here.

Also, you can see the stats for The Company of the Impervious Ward on the Aquerra wiki, by going here.
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Tony Vargas

el-remmen said:
Also, you can see the stats for The Company of the Impervious Ward on the Aquerra wiki, by goinghere.
No spellbooks for the Wizards? I've seen how much trouble Martin has had acquiring new spells, so I was curious what spells NPC wizards knew...

Tony Vargas

el-remmen said:
I have added the known spells for Heriot of the Ironstaff
Interesting. She has almost exactly the number of spells known that a standard 3E wiz would have just from levelling (not as many cantrips, 2 fewer 1st level, 2 more 3rd level).

I quite liked Defensive Manifestation of the Spirit - powerful, but a cool concept - a Sorcerer (Aquerran Witch) could sure get a lot of milage out of the CHA to AC concentration check.

BTW, I just glanced at the Witch, again, to check that it was CHA-based, and it's a very cool take on the Sorcerer.

Though, I do say that as someone who came up with this:

3e Sorcerer (Revised)

[sblock]This is a revision of the Sorcerer class to be, well sorcerers, in the
classic sense of those who gain magical power from dealing with

Sorcerer (Revised)

Sorcerers are Arcane spell casters who's spells are learned from
and/or powered by, spirits (and, possibly other supernatural allies).
Different sorcerers may have different aproaches. Some merely learn
from spirits, others chanell thier power. Some serve spirits, others
bargain with them, while still others 'command' them. Whatever a given
sorocerer's attitudes and style, the results are about the same. The
sorcerer is freed from the constant study, books, minutiae and
memorization of a conventional Wizard, but limmitted in the breadth of
the powers he can call on, by need to keep a coterie of spirit allies
Adventuring: Sorcerers sometimes adventure to find new spirits with
which to ally themselves or to fulfill bargains made with thier spirit
allies. Sorcerers also tend to crave power and influence - adventuring
can gain them oportunities for temporal status and power to match thier
mystical stature and might.
Other Classes: Sorcerers gain thier power from supernatural
alliances and are prone to forming more mundane alliances, as well.
Fighter-types are much apreciated, as they can defend the sorcerer long
enough to cast his spells in dangerous situations. Wizards are bit
stuffy, by comparison, but can have useful informations. Clerics and
Sorcerers are sometimes leary of eachother. Sorcerers see Clerics as
unequal partners in a supernatural alliance, while generally seeing
themselves as equals or masters of the spirits at thier disposal, while
Clerics are wary of the sorcererous penchant for dealing with
outsiders. Sorcerers, who tend to be young and a bit flushed with
power early in thier carreers often get along well with equally young
and oportunistic Rogues.

Class Attributes:

HD: d4 (unchanged)

Weapons & Armor: Proficient in all Simple Weapons, no armor, no
shields. (unchanged)

Skills: (unchanged) + Bluff(CHA), Diplomacy(CHA), Intimidation(CHA),
Knowledge:Spirits(Int), Sense Motive(CHA) (all to represent knowledge
of and skill at negotiating with, spirits and the like).

Level Benefits:
Base Attack Bonus: (unchanged)
Saving Throws: (unchanged)
Skills: (unchanged)
Feats: (unchanged)

Spell Casting:
The Sorcerer's bonus spells from CHA aply to the number of spells he
can know, instead of the number he can cast in one day. Each
spell 'known' represents a relationship with a spirit who provides the
spell. Some spirits provide multiple spells, but they take up a 'slot'
for each such spell. Optionally, additional spirits can be courted,
and Outsiders can provide greater power to a Sorcerer, but there is
always a price, often a steep one. (otherwise unchanged)

*We can just leave it at that. A few (much needed) CHA-based
*skills added, a slight difference in how they deal with
*spells, and leave most of the actual spirit-stuff, like
*most of the actual arcane stuff done by wizards or religous
*stuff done by clerics, in the background. Or, we can continue
*and add some apropriate abilities and restrictions and other
*options to represent the sorcerer's dealings with spirits and
*other things...

Table of Class Abilities/Restrictions:
- 1 - Fetch (Replaces Familiar), Speak with Spirits/Taboo
- 2 -
- 3 - See Ethereal
- 4 -/Taboo
- 5 -
- 6 -/Taboo
- 7 - Crossing/Service
- 8 -/Taboo
- 9 -
-10 -/Taboo
-11 -/Service
-12 -/Taboo
-13 - Projection
-14 -/Taboo
-15 -
-16 -/Taboo
-17 -
-18 -/Taboo
-19 -/Service
-20 - Etherealness

Class Abilities:
Fetch: To begin his training, each Sorcerer enters into a permanent
alliance with a minor spirit called a Fetch. The Fetch helps the
sorcerer contact other spirits and gain increasing access to the spirit
world. In return, the Fetch gains a focus in the Prime Material, and
gains in power as it's sorcerer does. A Fetch can be placed in a small-
animal body, in which case it acts much as a Familiar, tied to a Fetish
object, or simply allowed to use the Sorcerer, himself, as a focus. A
Fetch-Familiar whose body is killed is lost. If a Fetch-Fetish is
lost, it can be recovered, if damaged, but not totally destroyed it may
still serve as a focus. A Fetch using the Sorcerer as a Focus is
virtually a part of him, and cannot be lost through any normal means.
When a Fetch is lost, the Sorcerer is unable to andvance his Sorcerer
level until he obtains a new one. Obtaining a new Fetch requires a
special quest by the Sorcerer or expenditure of enough experience
points to gain a new level. Placing a Fetch in a body (Familiar) has
the same costs as summoning a Wizard's Familiar. Placing a Fetch in a
Fetish simply requires an apropriate object (costing double normal -
25gp minimum - if done at 1st level). Until a Fetch is placed in a
Familiar or Fetish, it remains linked to the Sorcerer, once it has been
given a body or object as a focus, it cannot change to a new focus, nor
return to focusing on the Sorcerer - if the focus is lost, so is the

Fetish Objects:
A Fetish object can be anything the Sorcerer can carry - from a tiny
seed pearl to a massive greatsword - but the item must be of unique
qualities and/or apearance (Masterwork items, curios, and items of
unique design all work). The Fetch can see and hear as if it were in
the Prime Material, at the point where the object is located, and can
communicate with it's master, like a Familiar of the same level. The
Fetish has Hardness and hps typical of it's type, but gains another
point of Hardness each time a Familiar would gain another point of AC,
and gains hps as a Familiar of the same level, as well. If the Fetish
is a tool or other useful object, it grants a +2 to apropriate checks
made with it. If it is a weapon or Armor, it has a +1 Enhancement
bonus. If it is a curio, jewel, article of clothing, or other non-
utilitarian item, it grants the Sorcerer a +1 Resistance bonus to all
his saves, as long as he is in contact with it. If a Fetish is
damaged, it can usually be repaired, if destroyed, often, the largest
fragment can still be used by the Fetch as a focus - if it is
completely destroyed, the Fetch is lost.

Speak with Spirits: The Sorcerer can communicate with spirits and
other Ethereal creatures in the general area. 'Spirit Speach' is a
sort of common-tounge among spirits, and is automatically known to the
Sorcerer (a Secret Language), but many Ethereal creatures will speak
other languages instead, especially elemental languages. The Sorcerer
is not automatically aware of such beings, however, though his Fetch
may be (this is /not/ the same as seeing an Ethereal creature, just
giving a basic idea of location and nature). Speaking with active,
willing spirits is a free action. Trying to contact an inactive spirit
is much more difficult, taking a Charisma check at DC 20.
Taboo: Each time the Sorcerer makes contact with a more powerful
class of spirits (gains access to a new spell level), he must undertake
an observance or accept a restriction on his behavior to appease his
allied spirits and make contact with more rarefied regions of the
spiritual world. If the Sorcerer does not have the CHA to cast spells
of a given level, he gains no Taboos when gaining the corresponding
Sorcerer level (he is unable to gain the alliegance of such potent
spirits). In addition, if the Sorcerer wants additional spirit allies
(spells) beyond the norm (and the DM permits him to try), he must
undertake additional taboos of the same level - 1 for each spirit.

Possible Taboos
Tokens: The Sorcerer must have an object in his possession to deal
with his spirits of a given level (or the specific spirit the token is
for). For low-level spirits, the token can be small and innocuous.
For more powerful ones, it must be larger, valuable, and/or obviously
displayed, or be detectable for magic and the spirit's alignment.
Tokens of very powerful spirits and outsiders radiate palpable (to
anyone) alignment and magical auras. If the sorcerer loses the token,
he must recover it to re-gain access to the corresponding spells. If
it is destroyed, he must create a new one and contact each spirit it
aplies to (taking 1 day per spirit) so they can re-focus on it.
Restriction: The Sorcerer is forbidden from doing or having
something. At low levels, restrictions are minor and specific (never
wear a red shirt, don't talk to Orcs of the DeathFist tribe, don't eat
durring the night, etc). At moderate levels, they can be broader or
more onerous (never wear or carry anything red, never talk to Orcs,
don't eat meat, never tell a lie). At higher levels, they should be
quite inconvenient (never wear armor, don't carry weapons, don't kill
in anger, don't cast spells at night, never hide the truth, etc). If
a Sorcerer violates a restriction, he loses access to the
corresponding spirits for 24 hours. Note that this is not usually
in 'punishment' - keeping to the Restriction is necessary to stay in
contact with the corresponding spirit(s).
Observance: The Sorcerer is required to periodically perform odd or
meaningless activities to keep in contact with the corresponding spirit
(s). At low levels, this could be turning three times widdershins
before going to sleep, reciting a brief incantation at noon, making a
certain sign whenever walking through a doorway, etc. At higher
levels, it could be difficult to perform for some reason (sacrifice an
animal at the dark of each moon, recite an original poem to an acorn
and burry it far from the oak where it fell, make anyone you're
introduced to laugh, etc..) At high levels, the observance can be
expensive and/or hard to keep up on (drink a flask of holy water with
every meal, deflower a virgin each night, save a life between the new
and half moon each month, leave a magic item behind in each house you
visit, etc...). If a Sorcerer fails in his observances, he loses
access to the corresponding spirits until the next observance is due
and properly performed.

See Ethereal: The Sorcerer can gaze into the Ethereal plane.
Shifting his senses from the material to the Ethereal is a move-
equivalent action. Doing so renders the Sorcerer vulnerable to attack
by Ethereal Creatures as if he were present in that plane, but he
cannot affect them in return.
Service: As the Sorcerer's connection to the spirit world deepens,
it's denizens begin to look upon him as one of thier own. This allows
him special abilities and access to greater sorceries, but is also
leaves him beholden to the spirits - even if his relationship to them
is as an equal or master. If the Sorcerer owes Service (see level
table) then, once per level (that is, before he can gain another
Sorcerer level), the sorcerer must perform a Service for his spirit
allies (a 19th level Sorcerer owes 3 Services before gaining 20th
level). A Service usually entails overcoming challenges amounting to
an Encounter level equal to the Sorcerer level at which it is incurred.
The Sorcerer does gain experience for challenges overcome in
fullfilling a Service, and may accept help from friends and allies - he
will also usually still have access to his Sorcery spells.
If a Sorcerer has more than the usual number of spirits at his
disposal, each additional spirit will also insist on a Service, each
level - the Sorcerer can advance in level without completing these
Services, but he loses the help of the corresponding spirit(s) until
they are fulfilled (and, if he gains multiple levels, 'overdue'
Services accumulate, and must be completed before the spirit(s) will
again provide spells to the Sorcerer). Services performed for an
individual spirit usually require overcoming challenges equal to an
Encounter Level of twice that of the spell the spirit provides.

Dealing with Spirits:
A Sorcerer's dealings with the spirit world can be kept 'in the
background,' if desired. Each level, the Sorcerer's Fetch introduces
him to a new spirit, giving him access to a new spell. Additional
spirit-names can be gleaned from books and other Sorcerers, or
researched. In short, allying with a spirit can be treated exactly
like learning a spell. The Sorcerer can even be allowed to learn
Arcane spells from Wizards or Wizard's writings, if desired. In this
last case, the Wizard's Fetch is assumed to help him learn/power the
spell (and a 'slot' of the apropriate level is still taken up).
However, a Sorcerer can gain greater power (and more RPing
oportunities), and also face more restrictions and challenges, if his
spirit-dealings are played through. The DM can limmit or encourage 'in
play' interactions with spirits (if they take play time away from the
other players, they can be curtailed, if they are interesting or
provide plot hooks or serve to keep the Sorcerer balanced, they can be
encouraged or required), and the Sorcerer can choose to persue such
opportunities or 'play it safe.'
Adding spirits to increase spells available: The Sorcerer can simply
enter into alliances with more spirits than normal. Each additional
spirit requires it's own taboo be followed, and that a Service be
performed for it, immediately, before it will begin providing it's
spell to the Sorcerer, and each level thereafter, if the Sorcerer is to
continue to recieve it's support.
Gaining the aid of a higher-level spirit: The Sorcerer can negotiate
with a spirit that provides a spell of higher level than he can
normally obtain (due to Charisma). If the spirit agrees, the Sorcerer
must treat it as an additional spirit (above) and must perform an
additional Service each and every time he uses the spell the spirit
provides. He must still be of high enough level to actually cast such
a spell, however - if not, he simply cannot channell such power.
Trading Services: Some spirits are potent enough to affect the
physical world on thier own, and all are capable of performing missions
in the Ethereal plane. A spirit can be persuaded to aid the Sorcerer
directly in some way of which it is capable, in return for an
additional Service - but, usually only if the Sorcerer has met all his
current Services and often only if the Service is provided in advance.
Empowering Items: If the Sorcerer wishes to create a magic item, but
lacks a spell, feat, level (a single level), or experience required to
make the item, he can instead persuade one of his spirits to inhabit
and empower the item. Such an item takes the normal time and money to
make, but /one/ of the above requirements is waived, and Permenancy is
never required. The spirit is present in the item, and able to
communicate with anyone using it (it is effectively an intelligent
item). It continues to count as one of the Sorcerer's spirits, but no
longer provides it's spell to him. If the Sorcerer sells or loses the
item, the new owner must assume a Sorcererous Taboo (usuall regarding
the treatment of the item, or eschewing of other similar items) and
perform occassional Services (at the whim of the DM) or the spirit can
cause the item to cease to function magically. Though the spirit can
withold the power of the item, it cannot activate any such powers
itself. When an
Allying with Outsiders: A Sorcerer with Astral Awareness (or some
other means of contacting Outsiders) can gain considerable power from
dealing with them. Outsiders can provide several spells of different
levels, while taking up only one spell 'slot' (that of the highest
level spell they can provide), provide a Divine spell instead of an
Arcane one, grant the Sorcerer a special ability, provide a spell he is
not high enough level to cast normally, or even materialize to act on
his behalf in the physical world. However, the price they demand is
conmensurate with the power the bestow. Regardless of the number of
spirits the Sorcerer is allied with, each Outsider demands it's own
Taboo and Service, and the spell they provide is considered a level
higher when figuring the severity of the Taboo or EL of the Service.
Outsiders who provide the Sorcerer with a spell or ability that normal
spirits cannot will also demand an additional service each time the
spell or ability is used. Furthermore, an Outsider expects the
Sorcerer to turn towards it's alignment, and promote it's goals in the
physical world, even when not directly serving it. Outsiders are very
good at devising services that seem acceptable, but actually draw the
Sorcerer closer to thier ethos. Finally, powerful Outsiders (such as
those that grant spells of higher level), can even demand the
Sorcerer's soul in payment (usually, if promised a soul, the Outsider
will grant much power with little or no further price). The moment a
Sorcerer who has made a soul-bargain is slain, the Outsider claims his
due (the Sorcerer cannot be Raised or Ressurected by any means, unless
his soul is somehow rescued from the Outsider). Usually only Evil
outsiders demand souls. Good outsiders are notoriously reluctant to
empower, or even deal with, Sorcerers, however, so there is often
little choice...

Crossing: The Sorcerer can exist simultaneously in the physical and
spiritual worlds. He is present, aware and able to affect, both the
Material and Ethereal planes and creatures therein. Crossing takes a
full round action to initiate or terminate. When not Crossing, the
Sorcerer is in the Material Plane. Though it can't be used to leave
the Material Plane, a Sorcerer who finds himself in the Ethereal Plane
can return to the Material in 2 rounds by initiating, and then
immediately terminating, his Crossing ability.
Projection: The Sorcerer can project his own Spirit (Soul) into the
Ethereal Plane. His spirit is solid and real to other Ethereal
creatures, and has his usual hit points. However, his DEX in spirit
form is equal to his INT, while his WIS supplants his CON and his CHA
stands in for STR. The Spirit has what apears to be clothing and spell
components, but no other items, unless they are specifically extant in
the Ethereal. The Sorcerer's spirit can cast spells in the Ethereal,
and possibly journey to other planes, but may not return to the Prime
Material, save by returning to it's body (which lies, innert, until
said return). Projecting takes a minute of concentration to achieve.
Returning is nearly instantaneous, as long as no Ethereal obstructions
are between the spirit and the corresponding point where the body lies -
simply moving the body, or sealing it behind physical barriers has no
effect. Hit points taken by the spirit while projecting are real, but
do not manifest physically, even upon return. If the Spirit has more
hit points than the body when it returns, there is no damage carried
over. If it has less, the body's hit points are reduced to that level -
but no lower than the Sorcerer's 1st level hit points (4+CON bonus).
If the Spirit is killed (-10 hps), while unable to return, or if the
body is killed while helpless, the Sorcerer is slain.
Etherealness: The Sorcerer can enter the Ethereal Plane, physically
(cf: Ethereal Jaunt). To Enter the Ethereal, the Sorcerer must first
use Crossing, then spend a full round action shifting fully to the
Ethereal. The reverse is true for returning to the Material Plane.

Sorcerer-only Feat:

Astral Awareness:
As a Sorcerer, you are aware of the Astral as well as the Ethereal
Benefits: You can use your special abilities to communicate with,
see into, Cross, project into, or journey physically to and from the
Astral Plane just as you can the Ethereal Plane. Because of this
affinity, you can contact and deal with Outsiders through your Fetch,
in a manner similar to your dealings with normal spirits. You can have
a number of Outsider-granted spells equal to your Charisma bonus - but
no more than 1 of a given spell level. Half of these can be Divine
spells, instead of Arcane ones. You cannot gain any of the other
benefits of dealing with Outsiders (higher level spells, multiple
spells, special abilities) without playing through the contact, and
accepting the additional taboos, services, and other drawbacks of such
Normally: See 'Allying with Outsiders,' above.

Good Outsiders are reluctant to involve themselves with Sorcerers,
prefering to work through Priests and serve the dieties and causes they
champion in thier own ways. A virtuous Sorcerer, however, can
sometimes gain thier aid. They are more likely to intervene in a good
cause (especially where evil Outsiders are involved), and more likely
to make a temporary alliance for such a purpose. Sometimes, if the
Sorcerer's goal is truely noble and selfless, they will ask no
service. They often require that the Sorcerer always ascede to
reasonable requests for charity and succor, as a taboo. Good outsiders
almost never make soul-bargains - they consider an afterlife with
themselves to be a privilege. In fact, they might agree to accept a
certain number of (profoundly good) services from the Sorcerer, in
return for 'saving' his soul (though the end result is still that he is
unressurectable when slain, at least he's going to a better place).
Evil Outsiders are often very anxious to work with sorcerers. The
taboos and initial services they may request are often not that onerous
or distasteful, and they are willing to grant considerable powers in
return. They are particularly forthcoming with powerful spells and
abilities for which they can demand immediate further services. Once a
Sorcerer has gotten himself into a position where he /needs/ the
Outsider's power, the services become increasingly vile. Alternately,
Evil Outsiders will often grant as much power as they are able - in
return for a soul-bargain.
Lawful Outsiders are not generally enclined to aid Sorcerers, but,
when they do, they expect the relationship to be permanent. They tend
to require exacting taboos to maintain contact. The services they ask
are usually reasonable (if, again, exacting), but shirking them is a
sure way lose thier alliegance (and that of other Lawful Outsiders
you're dealing with), permanently. Lawful Outsiders are most likely to
grant a single spell or special ability, often with the Service
required in advance, or with some gaurantee (such as a contingent soul-
bargain) that it /will/ be fulfilled.
Chaotic Outsiders will often deal with Sorcerers on a temporary
basis - trading services for single-use spells or powers or other
services - but rarely enter into the typical Sorcerer-spirit
relationship. When they do, thier taboos are seemingly minor, but open-
ended, and can lead to unforseen requirements (or instance 'eat
something new every day' is minor, at first, but can get very onerous
indeed, after a few years...). Chaotic Outsiders often expect services
up-front, and sometimes fail to deliver desired spells or powers
(substituting something they think would be better), however, they also
don't get too miffed about delayed or (if they weren't particularly
called on at the time) missed Services (though they may decide to
collect on such at the worst possible moments, too). Non-evil Chaotic
Outsiders rarely make soul-bargains (and Evil ones often manage to
collect the soul without delivering the goods, or without the bargain
even being properly made), when they do, it is usually because of a
personal obsession with the Sorcerer - who may not be held to the
baragain, or may be released eventually.

Sent via Deja.com Google Groups[/sblock]

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Moderator Emeritus
Tony Vargas said:
Interesting. She has almost exactly the number of spells known that a standard 3E wiz would have just from levelling (not as many cantrips, 2 fewer 1st level, 2 more 3rd level).

I quite liked Defensive Manifestation of the Spirit - powerful, but a cool concept - a Sorcerer (Aquerran Witch) could sure get a lot of milage out of the CHA to AC concentration check.

Well, I can't say I have much a system for figuring out what spells NPCs have - except for my #1 rule regarding all NPC spells and equipment, which is: Don't give the NPCs anything you are not willing to let the PCs get their hands on.

As for Defensive Manifestation of the Spirit, I don't think it is all the pwerful since it is only a wizard spell (not a Bard, or Witch or even a Cleric spell - characters that are more likely to have a high CHA) and because of the potential CON loss at the end of the spell's duration.

Tony Vargas said:
BTW, I just glanced at the Witch, again, to check that it was CHA-based, and it's a very cool take on the Sorcerer.

Though, I do say that as someone who came up with this:


Hey, that looks familiar. :)

But keep in mind, the witch that can be found on the wiki now is not version that Jana's player played and not the version used for Bastian either - it represents quite a departure mechanics-wise for the class.


Moderator Emeritus
Frukathka said:
I'm curious as to when the Book III download will be available.

Funny you should ask that. . . just last night I finished editing the manuscript. . . so the answer (as vague as it is) is: As long as it takes me transfer the edits from a hardcopy manuscript to the word doc - which assuming a few pages a day - maybe in a two or three months.

Hope that's not too long. :heh:

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