Death of petitioners



Aug 05, 2006 3:49:17
I've read somewhere in a Planescape supplement (don't remember which one - probably The Great Modron March, about this petitioner from Beastlands who goes on a mission to Sigil) that every cutter knew what happened to a petitioner who died on a foreign plane. Well, I don't. Actually, I was wondering what happened to a petitioner who died even on "his" plane. I remember the ones from Ysgard came back later (which partly explains why they like fighting so much) if they died fighting on Ysgard, but... How about the other planes ?


Aug 05, 2006 9:48:15
I am sure it may vary somewhat from plane to plane and petitioner to petitioner, but in general the consequence of a petitioner being slain on its home plane is that its essence merges with the plane itself (or in some cases possibly the power that the petitioner worships). This was supposed to happen at any rate eventually, when the petitioner had matched the ideals of the plane/power sufficiently, so I would presume the union is somewhat "premature" or imperfect. The essence of a petitioner who perishes off its home plane merely dissolves.

At the top of my head I seem to recall three exceptions to this rule, aside from the partial case of the Ysgardian petitioners (who I am fairly sure do merge with the plane/powers eventually).

A) The animal petitioners of the Beastlands who were actual animals (as opposed to, say, strongly nature-aligned humans) in life only live on the plane for a limited time before going back to being re-born on the Prime. I cannot recall whether they actually ever merge with the plane.

B) A different exception limited to a single power is Clangeddin Silverbeard of the dwarves, whose petitioners merge with him even if they die on a plane other than Arcadia (as they indeed are wont to do due to his sending legions of them abroad to do battle).

C) There is also at least one other way to prevent a dead petitioner's essence from being lost on a foreign plane, and that is by catching and storing it in a magic item known as a spirit bowl (the crafting of which may be limited to Mount Celestia).


Aug 05, 2006 10:21:41
Note that many cultures in Planescape believe in reincarnation - the Dustmen and Godsmen both base their philosophies on the idea, and druidic, Chinese and Indian cultures all believe in it. It seems, then, that any petitioner might eventually be reborn in a mortal body if in life they believed they would.

They still risk their existences if, as petitioners, they die outside their proper planes. But something continues to exist, even if the petitioner does not. The astral memory core remains, for example.


Aug 06, 2006 19:41:32
It would seem that reincarnation is a rather scarce phenonomen in Planescape, but that would have its natural reasons. Someone who's continously reborn on the material plane wouldn't have a great need for a planar paradise unless they reach perfection.

Many earthly religions also make these beings into their own small gods. In buddhist mythology enlightened men end up meditating in lotus position on the astral plane forever.

Reincarnation is really a concept that should be more deeply explored in the planar scheme.