Skull and Shackles
Besmara (bes-MAR-uh) is the goddess of pirates and sea monsters. She is brash, lusty, confrontational, and greedy, but follows a code of honor and is loyal to her crew and allies as long as it serves her interests. She cares little for senseless murder or other unprofitable acts, but is willing to take risks to attain great prizes. Even the most irreligious pirate
captain throws a share of treasure overboard now and then as tribute for the Pirate Queen. Mayors of port cities and captains of merchant vessels curse her name, for her followers are a direct threat to legitimate trade. She has little power or interest in the mortal world beyond the sea and its immediate reach.
In her interactions with sea monsters, she doesn’t play the motherly, brood-creating role that Lamashtu does, but rather the clever bully who keeps other bullies in line through physical threats and force of personality—her monsters are like vicious dogs who reluctantly obey her command to heel only because she can hurt or kill them, rather than loyal beasts who comply out of respect, love, or devotion.
Besmara appears as a brash, raven-haired pirate captain of any race she pleases, dressed in a stereotypical costume—typically colored pantaloons, black boots, a blousy shirt, and a hat (a bicorne, tricorne, or bandana), with gaudy jewelry and perhaps an eye patch, and carrying a rapier, saber, or cutlass. Sometimes her skin is greenish or even bluish, and she may sport one or more scars on her face and neck, either from a blade or the suckers and beak of a great
squid. She may have slow-burning matches braided into her hair, or breathe wisps of blue-green fire that ignite nearby combustibles. Despite her inhuman origins, she does not take monstrous form, even when angered, though swarms of crabs, predatory fish, and tentacled monsters have crawled out of her clothing, nearby water, or even thin air to do her bidding. Those who oppose her on the water feel seasick; those who oppose her on land feel hung over.
Besmara is chaotic neutral and her portfolio is piracy, sea monsters, and strife. Her favored weapon is the rapier. Her holy symbol in most seas is a skull and crossbones on
a black or red field, though Ulfen pirates often use a viking helm with crossed swords behind it instead of the design familiar in southern waters. Her domains are Chaos, Trickery, War, Water, and Weather. Nearly all of Besmara’s priests are clerics or rangers, with a few bards and druids, and every few decades an antipaladin champions her more destructive aspects. Her most common title is the Pirate Queen, though she is also known regionally as the Black Lady, the Sea Banshee, and Sailor’s Doom.
CUSTOMIZED SUMMON LIST
Besmara’s priests can use summon monster and summon nature’s ally spells to summon the following creatures in addition to the normal creatures listed in the spells.
Summon Monster II
Reefclaw (Bestiary 2 234) (CN)
Summon Monster/Nature’s Ally V
Saltwater merrow (Bestiary 2 189) (NE)
Summon Monster/Nature’s Ally VI
Tylosaurus (Bestiary 2 91) (N)
This creature has the entropic simple template (Bestiary 2 292).
A cleric of Besmara may give up one domain in exchange for a bird, blue-ringed octopus (Ultimate Magic 117), king crab (Ultimate Magic 119), monkey, or any of the familiars presented in the Core Rulebook. The cleric uses her cleric level as her effective wizard level for this purpose. A ranger who worships Besmara may select any of the creatures listed above as a familiar instead of choosing an animal companion. The ranger’s effective wizard level for this ability is equal to his ranger level – 3.
New Divine Spells
Clerics of Besmara may prepare lesser geas as a 3rd-level spell and curse of disgust(Pathfinder RPG Ultimate Magic 215) as a 5th-level spell, but can only use them to cause an
aversion to boats, ships, or open bodies of water.
School necromancy [disease, evil]; Level cleric 1, druid 1 (Besmara)
Casting Time 1 standard action
Components V, S
Target: living creature touched
Saving Throw: Fortitude negates; Spell
The subject contracts an advanced form of scurvy. He becomes constantly fatigued, suffers from
bone pain (– 1 penalty on Strengthand Dexterity-based checks), wounds easily (add + 1 point of damage to any bleed effects affecting the target), experiences loose teeth, and is slow to heal (natural healing occurs at half the normal rate). Scurvy can be treated magically or can be overcome with proper nutrition, eating the right foods ends the fatigue and bone pain within 1 – 2 days and provides a full cure 2d6 days after that.
Cloud of Seasickness
School conjuration (creation) [poison]
Level cleric 2, druid 2, sorcerer/wizard 2 (Besmara)
Casting Time 1 standard action
Components V, S, M (a piece of seaweed)
Range close (25 ft. + 5 ft./2 levels)
Effect: cloud spreads in 20-ft. radius, 20 ft. high
Duration: 1 round/level
Saving Throw: Fortitude negates, see text,
Spell Resistance: no
This spell functions like stinking cloud, except as noted above and that the vapors make creatures sickened instead of nauseated. Cloud of seasickness can be made permanent with a
permanency spell (requiring a 9th-level caster and costing 2,500 gp). A permanent cloud of seasickness dispersed by wind reforms in 10 minutes.