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Former Cultist: A Fifth Edition Background

Former Cultist: A Fifth Edition Background

Gustav DoreYou grew up in a cult, worshiping a demon, evil god, or some unpronounceable horror from beyond time and space. You were not a priest or anyone in power—just one of the chanting horde. Good thing for you that you found your way out of that mess. Work out with your gamemaster the nature of the thing worshiped, how you got into the cult, and why and how you left.

Skill Proficiencies: Religion, Deception

Language: Abyssal

Tool Proficiencies: One of the following: calligrapher’s supplies, disguise kit, musical instrument.

Equipment: A book of unholy scripture, robes, common clothes, one set of tools or an instrument chosen from the list above. 5 gp.

Feature: Contacts from the Old Days

You may not have been high up in the cult, but you got around. Other former cultists recognize one another almost on sight. Whenever you enter a new area, it does not take long to find others who have a similar past, who in turn keep their ear out for news of what is going on in the darker faiths.

Suggested Characteristics

Former cultists may have been very different when they joined, but tend to have similar experiences in the cult even when not worshiping the same thing. Whether that turns them into champions of the light or brooding misanthropes is a matter of circumstance and personality.

d8 Personality Traits

  1. I have learned to keep my mouth shut and eyes down if I want to survive.
  2. I distrust any kind of organized faith and those who follow them.
  3. I am so eager to put the past behind me that I fake being a happy outgoing person.
  4. I always look for hidden meanings in everything.
  5. I am paranoid that the old cult is out to get me.
  6. I still swear by the name of my old god and use the cult’s jargon.
  7. I am quick to conform to the wishes of others.
  8. I am resistant and contrary just for the sake of it.

d6 Ideal

  1. No one should go through what I did. (Chaotic)
  2. No one shall have power over me ever again. (Evil)
  3. Self Interest. I always look out for number one. (Evil)
  4. I strive to give those in despair a reason to keep going. (Good)
  5. I must atone for my evil acts. (Good)
  6. My new good god is everything to me. (Any non-Evil)

d6 Bond

  1. I value my companions as the family I lost.
  2. I shamed my real family and seek to make amends and reestablish contact.
  3. Someone else helped me get out of the cult; I owe that person my life.
  4. The leader of the cult used me; I will see her brought to justice.
  5. I want to save those I recruited into the cult.
  6. I have a friend still in the cult who I still hold out hope for.

d6 Flaw

  1. I still secretly believe the doctrine of my old cult and know that I and this world are doomed.
  2. I make up for past abuse by abusing others.
  3. I developed a taste for illicit drugs in the cult and still crave them
  4. I blindly follow anyone who takes authority.
  5. In the cult I had to steal and hide food to survive. I still do even when I have plenty.
  6. I will sacrifice anything to stop the cult. Anything and anyone.

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