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KISMET'S NPC COURTESAN CLASS

(PATHFINDER EDITION)

 

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Lust & Romance in D&D

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Introduction

The courtesan is a heady mixture of grace, education, sex and politics, filling a social niche in noble courts and elite circles. She picks up where the socialite and the prostitute leave off, combining magical and mundane methods to provide the most complete entertainment possible. Those who can maintain a courtesan of their own prove that they have means and refined tastes, and gain powerful social allies. The institution of the courtesan is upheld by the patronage of the rich and the regulation of lawful and neutral societies. Each culture decides the boundaries of courtesan tradition: whether they can be slaves or citizens, male or female, whether they should be trained from birth, and so on. Courtesans usually act as entertainers, diplomats, hostesses, matchmakers, healers, spies, court gossips, and messengers. Their services might be used to pay off debts or as a matter of trade.

Humans, drow, moon elves, sun elves, rock gnomes, half-elves and lightfoot halflings make up the common races of courtesans. These races also tend to support courtesan systems more often than others. Aasimar and other exotic races may be employed as courtesans due to their unearthly beauty. Dwarves, on the other hand, have nothing to do with the courtesan business, as they use stone and architecture to indicate their wealth. Half-orcs and other races with low Charisma can find no patronage in the market, and no Courtesan Mistress worth her corset would waste her time training them.

The Courtesan

Prerequisite: Charisma greater than 10
Alignment: Any
Hit Die: d6

Class Skills: Acrobatics (Dex), Appraise (Int), Bluff (Cha), Craft (Int), Diplomacy (Cha), Disguise (Cha), Intimidate (Cha), Knowledge (Arcana), Knowledge (Geography), Knowledge (History), Knowledge (Local), Knowledge (Nobility), Linguistics (Int), Perception (Wis), Perform (Cha), Profession (Wis), Sense Motive (Wis), Spellcraft (Int).

Skill Ranks Per Level: 4 + Int modifier.

Weapon and Armor Proficiency: Courtesans are proficient with daggers, light crossbows, darts, shortbows, knives, long and short swords, rapiers, scimitars, chakrams, whips, garrotes, lassos, nets, and spiked chains. They are familiar with light armor and with bucklers.

Spells: A courtesan casts arcane spells drawn from the courtesan spell list. She can cast any spell she knows without preparing it ahead of time. To learn or cast a spell, a courtesan must have a Charisma score equal to at least 10 + the spell level. The Difficulty Class for a saving throw against a courtesan’s spell is 10 + the spell level + the courtesan’s Charisma modifier.

Like other spellcasters, a courtesan can cast only a certain number of spells of each spell level per day. Her base daily spell allotment is given on Table: Courtesan. In addition, she receives bonus spells per day if she has a high Charisma score.

Where Table: Courtesan indicates that the courtesan gets 0 spells per day of a given spell level, she gains only the bonus spells she would be entitled to based on her Charisma score for that spell level.

Courtesan Talents

With time and practice, courtesans can learn or earn a few extra perks related to their position. Unless otherwise stated, a courtesan talent can only be chosen once.

Alluring: A courtesan learns to enhance her natural beauty, gaining one permanent point of Charisma.

Courtesan's Bargain: With a successful Diplomacy check, a courtesan can regularly haggle for a discount on any good or service, so long as it does not involve magical enchantment and the transaction relies on currency. For each point that her roll exceeds the DC, she gets a cumulative 1% off the final price. The courtesan can also bargain to sell gear or services (including her affections) for 1% more for every point that her roll exceeds the DC. She may only roll for a bargain using this talent once per day. This talent can be chosen more than once, increasing by 1% each time.

Poison Use (evil alignment only): Some courtesans are trained in the use of poison and never risk accidentally poisoning themselves when applying poison to a blade. This talent is rarely taught in good societies, though it is the status quo in evil lands.

Courtesan Spell List

0 level spells: create water, daze, depilatory, detect magic, detect poison, enhanced diplomacy, ghost sound, mending, message, open/close, prestidigitation, purify food and drink, read magic

1st level spells: charm person, color spray, command, comprehend languages, cure light wounds, detect charm, disguise self, hypnotism, sanctuary, shield, touch of gracelessness, unnatural lust, unseen servant, youthful appearance

2nd level spells: aid, alter self, calm emotions, cat's grace, cure moderate wounds, daze monster, delay poison, detect desires, eagle's splendor, enthrall, hold person, perceive cues, suggestion, tongues, zone of truth

3rd level spells: adjustable disguise, charm monster, clairaudience/clairvoyance, create food and water, cure serious wounds, glibness, lover�s vengeance, pain strike, poison, remove disease, slow, tiny hut

4th level spells: bountiful banquet, contagion, cure critical wounds, dominate person, hold monster, neutralize poison, nixie�s lure, rainbow pattern, secure shelter, sending

5th level spells: command (greater), cure light wounds (mass), dream, mind fog, nightmare, pain strike (mass), seeming, suggestion (mass), telepathic bond

Table: The Courtesan

Lvl

BAB

Fort

Ref

Will

Special

0

1

2

3

4

5

1st

+0

+0

+2

+0

Courtesan talent

3

1

--

--

--

--

2nd

+1

+0

+3

+0

 

3

1

--

--

--

--

3rd

+2

+1

+3

+1

 

3

2

--

--

--

--

4th

+3

+1

+3

+1

 

3

2

0

--

--

--

5th

+3

+1

+4

+1

Courtesan talent

3

2

1

--

--

--

6th

+4

+2

+5

+2

 

3

2

1

--

--

--

7th

+5

+2

+5

+2

 

3

3

2

--

--

--

8th

+6/+1

+2

+6

+2

 

3

3

2

0

--

--

9th

+6/+1

+3

+6

+3

 

3

3

2

1

--

--

10th

+7/+2

+3

+7

+3

Courtesan talent

3

3

2

1

--

--

11th

+8/+3

+3

+7

+3

 

3

3

3

2

--

--

12th

+9/+4

+4

+8

+4

 

3

3

3

2

0

--

13th

+9/+4

+4

+8

+4

 

3

3

3

2

1

--

14th

+10/+5

+4

+9

+4

 

3

3

3

2

1

--

15th

+11/+6/+1

+5

+9

+5

Courtesan talent

3

3

3

3

2

--

16th

+12/+7/+2

+5

+10

+5

 

3

3

3

3

2

0

17th

+12/+7/+2

+5

+10

+5

 

3

3

3

3

2

1

18th

+13/+8/+3

+6

+11

+6

 

3

3

3

3

2

1

19th

+14/+9/+4

+6

+11

+6

 

3

3

3

3

3

2

20th

+15/+10+5

+6

+12

+6

Courtesan talent

3

3

3

3

3

2

I created an updated, Pathfinder-compatible Hetaera class for player characters, as well; you can find it here.

The Account of Senedana, Head Courtesan of the Suleiman of Caimport, 1340 DR

SenedanaSenedana, courtesy of Worldspinner Portrait Workshop

"I was a young girl then, but just what age I was, I cannot remember. My father... I begged him for days to allow me to accompany him to the palace. I knew what day and what hour he would be there because my mother made much of the summons. I knew that the trip would be for business - so my father could ply his trade, so we could eat - but I did not care. I had only ever seen the outside of the palace, although I had seen paintings and heard stories of the inside. I dreamed of jeweled women and men in dark silks, walking down corridors with mosaics of the ancient gods. I made a menace of myself so that I could go, and, poor man, my father relented. He could not have imagined what would happen.

My father needn't have cautioned me to be silent. Under the watchful eyes of the guards, I became very small. Yet these sable-bearded men smiled when they saw me and one of them even tipped me a wink. Perhaps they saw their daughters in my face. I was nonetheless brought to calm and reserve by the press of adults about me, and I held my father's hand dutifully until he had to let me go. My curiosity pulled me away from his voice and into a courtyard filled with flowers and shadows from delicate trees. I felt like a girl in a fairy tale, just before the the tree speaks or the genie appears in mid-air.

A group of men came down the hall, several speaking at once, and I saw behind them the mosaics of my imaginings. But the mosaics at once meant nothing. One of the men stood, staring at me, and all my substance froze. His eyes bore down on me and swallowed me whole. I do not know if I was afraid. I do not know what it was. Something passed between us in that moment; the beginning of everything, the end of my girlhood.

When I rediscovered my feet, I fled to my father's side and pressed my face to him, but I could not hide from the stranger. He was the ruler of the palace, the ruler of much of the city. I knew his name, of course I knew it, but I knew something else about him that his eyes had told me. He was so cordial to me then, bending down and touching me as softly as if I were a flower, as if he was afraid I would vanish. He paid attention to my father only when it was impossible to put it off any longer, and then he was very kind for my sake. He insisted that I remain with them in their talks until a certain point, when he asked that I eat.

I watched my father and this new man, this new creature of fine cloth and gold trim and sleek eyes, this man with broad hands and thick hair that was everything masculine. I could not hear their speech but I knew it involved me, since my father's eyes darted to me and the stranger watched me steadily. It did not enter my mind that they were in negotiations for my hand... for my life.

By the end of our visit, however, it had been decided: I was to train at the royal harem in the arts of the courtesan, under no less than the Headmistress herself, and for no less a lord than the ruler of the palace. I was to learn the ways of rich men and the ways of pleasing them in sight, sound and deed. I would become the epitome of the feminine, clothed always in the best and kept at all times in luxury such as my own mother had never known. I would not know the yolk of the housewife, nor the stigma of the spinster or the diseased streetwalker. I would become a courtesan.

Since then I have learned the ways of men and women alike, be they rich or poor. I have been taught how to observe and how to listen, as carefully as any wizard. I have learned how to be pleasing to myself and others in sight, sound and deed, by using everything at my disposal. I have known more wealth than half of the city in my wardrobe and accoutrements. I have belonged to a lord like no other, and while I may share my flesh, no other being holds my adoration as he does. He absorbed me that day in the garden and I have been his ever since - and, gods willing, I shall always be his."

 

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