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Balseraph History and Culture

Discussion in 'Fall from Heaven Lore' started by thewyrm, Mar 9, 2008.

  1. Sofista

    Sofista card-carrying

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    Mewtarthio: Far from me to deny the possibilities of Order Calabim both pratically and storytelling-wise; only I'd call that more varying the theme than roleplaying it.
    Calabim leaders are coded as favoring OO (Flauros) or the AV (Alexis), which means in my eyes those are their most thematical choices. Likewise, Flauros has as favorite civic Fend for themselves. Now even if he didn't, Public Healers makes sense, but surely less than Sacrifice the weak. PH is also a compassionate civic, explicitly disapproved of by the Dynamic Duo, so in their... robes, I just would find it out of character(s). That the possibility is there is just replayability bonanza, but such changes IMO don't make nearly as much sense as, say, the FoL+Svartalfar combo (even though Faeryl is set to prefer CoE), which works great and looks by all means OK lore-wise.
     
  2. thewyrm

    thewyrm Ambassador to Real Life

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    You are kidding yourselves if you fall into the trap of not believing Perpentach is evil. That is exactly what he wants you to believe. Yes he has a twisted sense of honor, but he still uses clever wordplay and riddles to weasel his way out of promises.

    People point to the Beeri Bawl 'pedia entry as proof Perp aint all bad. Well, I counter by saying he just kidnapped an an innocent man. Placed him in a cage and forced him to face the very real threat of agonizing death for NO OTHER REASON than because watching someone else's humiliation as though it was a game show amuses him. The fact that he let him go is irrelevant.


    I don't know if any of you have read the Sword of Truth novels by Terry Goodkind,
    *[mild spoiler ahead]* but I can draw a comparison for Keelyn in them. At a certain point in one of the novels the protagonist is kidnapped by a villian who has lived her whole life in a terrible environment and was raised to think she was worthless. As a byproduct of her environment during childhood she is a zealout of the bad guy's evil religion. She is their dark champion. She reminds me a lot of Keelyn. She is so sure that she is right, but the hero is able to slowly show her the fallacies of her beliefs. Slowly he breaks down her dark facade, instead of her breaking his will to resist the bad guy as was her plan. After being her prisoner for months the hero of course is able over time to make her see that she is better than what she has let herself become and eventually, she becomes one of the greatest heroes in the epic. She is also my favorite character in the story, but I think that has more to do with the fact that villians who become heroes are my favorite plot device in all of story telling.

    Anyway, it is not outside the realm of possibility that Keelyn could be redeemed, but like that character I think it would take her being strangely protective of a particular puppet for reasons she can't explain until eventually she discovers she feels genuine love. The redemption of Keelyn would make an excellent story if that was something Kael ever had any kind of interest in pursuing. Unfortunately, happy endings don't occur very often in this world.
     
  3. A_Hamster

    A_Hamster Small Furry Animal

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    The ending of this story arc has a sequence which seems very Balseraphic in nature: the fun and the humorous trappings hide the terror which lurks beneath. (The link takes you to the first of the three relevant comics.)
     
  4. Vehem

    Vehem Modmod Monkey

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    Aye - there aren't many stories that can successfully turn an arch-villain (I think she deserves the story - she is "Death's Mistress" after all) into a hero without seeming cliché, but that one managed it.

    EDIT: And *when* did Confessor get released and how did I not notice? Time for a trip to the bookshop tomorrow...
    EDIT2: TV series of "Wizard's First Rule"..? Sam Raimi? Hmm...
    EDIT3: (and yes, I did consider doing a Sword of Truth mod before I started on Fall Further)
     
  5. thewyrm

    thewyrm Ambassador to Real Life

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    You will love confessor! It was a great ending. Our favorite "Death's Mistress" figures prominantly. I think I actually put the Sword of Truth above both Jordan's Wheel of Time and Martin's A Song of Ice and Fire.
     
  6. thewyrm

    thewyrm Ambassador to Real Life

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    Creepy. I'm always happy to put my two years of high school espanol to use.

    I sometimes think aside from loving bards so much I took an instant liking to the Balseraph because nothing terrifies me more than a clown and I do love to be scared. Roleplaying that which frightens you most can be quite cathartic. The same reason my favorite Clan from Vampire: The Masquerade was always the Malkavian and why I love to hate the Joker.
     
  7. Wyrmhero

    Wyrmhero Dragon-Lord

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    I see the Belseraphs as this:

    There are the peasants, who try to keep their head down and not be noticed.
    There are those who truly enjoy the Belseraph's reign of carnivals.
    There are those who work for the carnivals
    There are the saner ones; The normal people in the court, who try to keep Perp happy.
    There are the insane ones; Perpentach, and a few of his higher court spring to mind.

    And then there are the truly mad ones: People who think they can take advantage of their 'mad' king, and fail miserably, often driving themselves over the cliff of insanity in the end.
    And the carnivals themselves: Endless carnivals. A city of lights and music. The Belseraphs may be insane, but you would never worry about it. You'd be trapped in the endless euphoria of the carnival.
     
  8. Milosrdenstvi

    Milosrdenstvi Chieftain

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    Endless euphoria? Or endless terror?
     
  9. loocas

    loocas Prince

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    Wow, I forgot about Gunnerkrigg. I haven't read it in like two years. This is a good day.
     
  10. thewyrm

    thewyrm Ambassador to Real Life

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    Depends entirely on your point of view. My motto is:

    When you find yourself falling into madness. . . dive.
     
  11. Wyrmhero

    Wyrmhero Dragon-Lord

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    A quote I often end up taking that literally these days...:crazyeye:
     
  12. DharmaMcLaren

    DharmaMcLaren Warlord

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    Is Perpentach truly evil or simply insane? There is a difference. Evil implies that he is willingly evil, that he has full understanding of what he's doing and he's making conscious decisions to do so. If the mind making those decisions is unhealthy, it's not his fault. The case of him freeing Beeri Bawl perhaps shows that, while inclined to acts of evil, he does not quite recognise that they are evil and is still capable of spontaneously doing good. Most of the time his chaotic, selfish decisions will result in more bad than good, though; and he's never consistent. One day a man might get away with stealing a loaf of bread, the next he might be made a duke, the next he might be painted blue and launched off a cliff from a catapult.
     
  13. thomas.berubeg

    thomas.berubeg Wandering the World

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    HE, himself, is truly evil... the other multitudes of minds copied within his own are not necessarily evil.
     
  14. MagisterCultuum

    MagisterCultuum Great Sage

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    He is a poor helpless child suffering from mental disabilities (probably close to autism) made worse by his uncontrolled magical ability. It isn't really his fault that the only one capable of raising such a child (Kyorlin) found him so late, and was still a very evil mage.


    This isn't to say that he isn't evil, just that he has good reason to be.
     
  15. Mewtarthio

    Mewtarthio Emperor

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    Yes. An Jonas is just a tribal cheftain doing what his god told him to do, and Tebryn is just a cowardly old man doing his best to avoid torment, and Hyborem is just an entity with the misfortune to be created out of pure evil incapable of understanding morality. The fact is, everybody has a reason for their actions. The fact that Perpentach is insane does not make him any less evil in the world of FfH.
     
  16. ÆNEAS

    ÆNEAS Chieftain

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    Hahaha. Well said. Poor little Hyborem, he was just born with a heart two sizes too small.
     
  17. thewyrm

    thewyrm Ambassador to Real Life

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    MC- you have access to a lot more of the back story than I do, so it may be that you just have more info on Perpy than I do. Looking at his 'pedia entry though it doesn't really explain just how crazy he was to begin with, only that he was using his mind magic to coerce the entire staff into giving him their undivided attention at the expense of the other inmates. He could very well have known exactly what he was doing.

    I go by the hypothesis that he is not truly insane, he just has access to so much information and is listening to so many voices that everyone else perceives his actions as being random, when in fact he has an actual agenda. Or, if you prefer, he be mad, yet there be method in it.
     
  18. Nikis-Knight

    Nikis-Knight Deity

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    His mind kept a residual bit of personality from everyone whom he used his mind magic on. With some, this would fade, but with those he had prolonged or deeper contact, like his parents, this became a permanent thing, and as a child it left him quite bonkerss, unable to discern his own ideas from those of the minds he'd copied.

    He's a bit more in control later in life, after he's had time to grow more as a person in relative peace. But then, the voices are also more numerous, so it's probably not much better.
     
  19. MagisterCultuum

    MagisterCultuum Great Sage

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    Are you sure it sometimes faded? I thought he had a complete copy of everyone on whom he had ever used mind magic, and that as a child he didn't know enough about his powers to refrain from using them on everyone he met.
     
  20. thomas.berubeg

    thomas.berubeg Wandering the World

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    i thought so too, from the word of Kael himself... he has complete copies of everyone he's met, and two of Kylorin.
     

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