Jermlaine pranks

Mage Hand

Hi all. I have an encounter coming up. The 5e cleric with the war domain, a worshipper of St Ugh (like St. Cuthbert) is charged to pray all night, on his knees, at a shrine and neither speak nor move. I'm pretty sure the player will dig this.
So, there are Jermlaine in the area and rats. Throughout the encounter they wont attack but they will torment him. There should be about an hour of torment, if the player can handle it, before wandering monster checks start. So cleric can decide if he wants to put up with it. The others decide if they want to aide him (Maybe by playing music or something) or ignore it or whatever. Then monsters come and they all make new choices etc etc

So I need lots of unpleasant things Jermlaine do to test a warpriest in a graveyard at night. They should be verbally concrete because I want it to challenge the player to put up with it rather than just make him do wisdom saves or something like that. They shouldn't do damage, or that unfairly pushes the players to attack. They should be R rated at worst for this table.

So I thought some of you guys might dig this and save me from coming up with a hundred of these myself. Then we can post it on the internet somewhere and we'll all get rich.


Should be playing D&D instead
Starting off with kinda pathetic attempts by the jermlaine, but ramping up the annoying/difficulty over time. Admittedly most of these suggestions are actions, not verbal annoyances - though I believe this might overall be a better approach to the encounter, since it's very easy for a character to ignore verbal jabs of NPCs, but less so for actions which demand attention.

1) Pretending to be St. Ugh himself and demanding that the priest leave or give all his stuff away or kill his buddy or whatever. Very transparent attempt, obvious bad impression.

2) Does a lot of "hey if you're a dumb-dumb, say absolutely nothing... HAHAHAHA!" type taunting.

3) Throwing pebbles at the cleric. Upgrades to throwing poop, and then throwing rats later.

4) Doing the whole "want to hear the most annoying sound in the world?" bit from Dumb & Dumber.

5) Makes stinky farts in the cleric's face. Maybe one fart is so bad it requires a saving throw to avoid gagging.

6) Constant pickpocket attempts. Really obnoxious when it succeeds, dancing around laughing and whatnot.

7) Aggressive blaspheming.

8) Horrific taunts ("I bet you rape babies, you fucking sicko baby-rapist!") laden with horrible accusations and numerous profanities.

9) Trying to plug the cleric's nose/mouth so he can't breathe.

10) Defiling the shrine and/or graves (mostly with poop).


8, 8, I forget what is for
Am I correct in my understanding that you are proposing that this take about an hour of playing time, during which the player has the choice of either doing nothing, or reacting to the jermlaine (which would effectively end the encounter)?

Since the other players are not under this constraint, this means that for the duration of the encounter, every player but the cleric's player gets to actively play, doing whatever they want. The test for the cleric's player is to endure an hour of not doing anything, while the rest of the players get to play, and listen to the DM describe various torments being inflicted upon his character.

My advice would be to keep it short. Character-endures-while-doing-nothing is a better scene for a movie than for an RPG, and if this scene was in a movie, it would not be an hour long, it would be a short montage. I suppose there are some players who could be content to passively listen to DM narration for an hour while effectively being excluded from play. Others might be too polite to say anything. But I think doing this for long, or often, is a bit risky. IMO, a DM's mantra should be to keep the players playing.

Mage Hand

Ha. Yea, I worry too about it getting boring. But the idea of 30-60 minutes is game time, not real time. And once the howling starts he will be doing something. Of course if it falls flat I will feel like an idiot. I will keep it short.