I've been playing D&D for a few years now and I've often been a DM, though one day, during quarantine an online group was reaching out for new members for a homebrew game, and of course, I jumped to it.
It's here that I introduce the cast, however, there's only really three people to be concerned about:
– Doc (The Player who organized a lot of the games, but wasn't the DM, he was the reason why the group had the Deep Magic Supplement)
– Fox (The DM, also if you're reading this, sorry, but I kinda want to get this off my chest)
– Me (As myself)
When I reached out, I was introduced to Doc, who seemed to have played the game for like a decade or so, generally seemed like a nice guy who loved the game, and he sorta explained the bare basics of the group, revealing that the majority of the players were also new to this specific group.
In terms of character creation, we were told that we would start with an extra feat at 1st level and every 4th level, this was for player level, rather than class level. We were supposed to create level 1 characters who would be boosted to level 4 at the end of the session.
I rolled up Angel Everhart, standard Tiefling and Boreal Sorcerer (Deep Magic supplement, not my favourite, I will admit). Now an important thing to note with her was backstory, which was simple:
Angel Everhart, or Test Subject 007, was vat-grown in an alchemist's lab to be a part of an experiment to mass-produce sorcerers, during this time she was instilled with a strong sense of discipline and all that, then one day, she killed a few of the testers and escaped. Assuming the name of Angel Everhart and trying to figure out how to become a person and finding a life outside of just being a tool for magic destruction.
It had the potential to be edgy, but I cleared it with the DM, a small other note is that Angel's arcane focus was her bond, in that she made it herself and it was the first thing that she's ever owned.
The rest of the starting party was a Human Divination Wizard, played by Doc, a Yuan-Ti Swords Bard, a Dwarf Lore Bard whose player dropped off the face of the earth after two sessions, and a Tiefling Glory Paladin.
I will say that it was off to a strong start, while constant level ups were not all that fun to me, (As was trying to figure out what Angel needed), but aside from that, most of the players knew how to interact with the world, even if Fox was a little generous with items. Though after one game, I decided to talk to Fox outside of the game, because I had an idea for my character for later on, basic idea was researchers were looking for her, and would be talking about her like she was their daughter who had ran away and they were "so scared for her" the sorta thing that might appeal to the more good-aligned party we were with.
Instead, after a while, he insisted on this idea that he had that Angel was raised by a cult, called the Black Hand, and was handed to them by her parents, moreover that her original name was Rose, and she was basically raised by the cult to be a mixture of a "trouble-shooter" and was sorta just tortured by them for two decades. I accepted, I decided that it was an alright backstory, and the same goals were there, Angel wanted to discover how to be a person and how to be something more than a tool for a cult to use, with a similar method of escaping. Admittedly, now there was also a goal of finding her parents (whoever they were) and probably either decking them or just asking 'why?'.
During this time I had also made this a bit more clear to Fox what Angel's goals were, but there was also an end-game goal, suggested by Fox but agreed upon by me. In the campaign, there was this book that could rewrite someone's fate, it was essentially the end goal, in addition to changing fate, you could rewrite the past, Angel wanted the book so that she could rid herself of having magic in the first place, after all, if she wasn't a sorcerer she might not have suffered so much.
Now, with all that info in hand, I thought that it would be gradually revealed during the campaign, allowing for other players to put the pieces together for themselves. You'd think that the first dungeon that we went to wasn't inhabited by Black Hand cultists, well, you would be wrong. Oh, also during the sessions before we went to the first dungeon (to fight goblins) we had acquired DMPC 1, GRAG, a warforged battlemaster fighter, and one that I don't quite mind.
But yes, first dungeon, the first floor was goblins, and a cursed sentient sword that was held by the cult leader, so Angel had the fun time of some trauma, and briefly being possessed by the sword and trying to kill the Swords Bard.
Then the next few floors were filled with Black Hand cultists, and it got so bad that Angel spent a few turns curled up in the fetal position crying.
Now during this time, a slight issue had come up with how the game was being run, we were getting hassle-free long rests in the middle of the dungeon as well as level-ups, we were like, level 8 when we left. But aside from that during the end of the dungeon, we had encountered the Cult Leader, Dinnos, who had just stepped out of the Nine Hells himself and was going to kick our ass. It was a supposed to lose fight, but Fox decided to run this like a normal fight.
Which lead to both the Tieflings joining him, Dinnos accidentally murked the paladin during this time and I got DM-Interventioned away from being evil but did get knocked down to being Neutral, which… as far as punishments for almost killing your friends go, is kinda light.
During this time, another game that I had been in with the group (and a different DM) had ended because the DM wasn't feeling up to it, and Doc wanted to swap out his wizard, to his demigod (no, really) in that campaign. Also, one of my own friends had joined because the Swords Bard's player had found himself in a scheduling conflict, so that was fun. But this all added up to one thing, Angel was the only PC left of the original party, which I suppose put some emphasis on me. But more importantly, we were given a talk to by the God of Fate himself where he basically assigned us with protagonist duties of defeating the BEEG, (Dinnos) and his cult.
The session with the supposed to lose fight ended with us waking up in the tavern in the small town we started in, apparently a week later, with amulets showing our devotion (see: Involuntary volunteering) to the God of Fate, whose name escapes me. Oh and we also met DMPC 2, Sarra Frostfang, a Kobold Life Cleric who I despised immediately. My last idea when the session ended, and I told Fox this was that Angel was going to go to a tavern room and summon a succubus (a character from my backstory, because I had the Channeler Background, and I can't remember much about her, because the Succubus never got much of a personality) and vent to her.
During this time, I had talked with the DM a bunch about being able to multiclass, because while Angel was a big believer in ends justifying the means, (as long as she was the only one who suffered) I figured that this literal talk with a deity and some other thoughts might make her want to take up levels in something else, I suggested Bard, because it fit but instead agreed to a Charisma-Based Cleric, no I don't understand either, but I took Arcana as my subclass.
The last session started, not with a talk with a succubus, but instead an hour and a half long dream sequence for Angel, where her backstory was rewritten, again. So, it turns out that she had a pretty legendary mother, who was responsible for Dinnos having to walk out of the hells and had apparently dismantled the cult, but had handed this magic baby to her brother, who then handed this magic baby to the cult (I guess a splinter cell that escaped, or like a New Khans situation) who was then promptly tortured for 26 years. But another name for Angel was revealed, as "Lily Helsign", which was then changed to Rose for reasons, and then to Angel Everhart after she had escaped. In addition, when my character woke up my strength score was increased to 10 (it was my dump stat) and I had a sword in my inventory, I then had to tell Fox that I couldn't use swords, due to Arcana Cleric not giving me martial weapon proficiency.
To top this all off, aside from me being uncomfortable during this, (I had just gone through a dungeon where Angel was the main focus) and just the other players' probable boredom, of having to sit for a full hour and a half while I was forced into the spotlight, I wasn't told a thing about this rewrite until it happened.
Like, nothing, this was just as much of a surprise to me, but to add to it, the arcane focus, the first thing that Lily/Rose/Angel owned wasn't actually made by her, it was a gift from her mom, that the murder cult let her keep, for some reason.
Understandably I was unhappy with this, and I had voiced that unhappiness to Fox with this after the session, but he was pleased as punch, to him this was a good idea that he couldn't have spoiled.
Though due to the mental stresses of DMing, Fox had stopped the Campaign after that, which I don't blame him for, even if I was still a little miffed that he hadn't even thought to give me a heads up or consider that there's players who might now enjoy a full hour and a half of not being allowed to do anything.
I harbour no ill-will towards anyone in the group, but somehow I think that I will be waiting for a while before I join another one of their games.