Paradox (5e Background)

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A paradox is a person who's timeline diverged for whatever reason. The two timelines' differences are so significant that it results in a rift, with the person having memories from both timelines, their minds torn between the two, in a constant confusion over their existence. When making a paradox it is important to ask questions about your creation and your goal, such as who you were before the spilt, why the split occurred, and what you will do with the information you have about your diverging timelines.

Skill Proficiencies: Arcana and either Deception or History

Tool Proficiencies: Any One

Languages: Celestial

Equipment: 2d10 gold pieces, 1 trinket from one of your timelines, and a set of common clothing, Journal of timelines that only makes sense to you.

Feature: Temporal Awareness[edit]

You are connected to time in a way that nobody else can understand. You feel time as it ebbs and flows around you and can sense its flow. You can see how it interacts with every living and unliving thing in the universe, and can sense when it's being manipulated, damaged, or otherwise behaving outside its norm.

- Temporal anomolies such as paradoxes, creatures and objects out of their own time, and magic that manipulates time stand out to you. You can feel what's wrong, and it's direction and distance from you.

- Spacial anomolies that influence time such as unusual gravitational manipulations from spells or teleportation also stand out to you, if not to a reduced capacity.

- You can accurately recall the duration of anything that you've experienced, and can perfectly recall anything that you have personally experienced with a DC 12 Wisdom (History) check.


An important aspect of being a paradox is how your character came to be, or how they didn't.

d6 Origins
1 Divine Retribution: One of your ancestors or parents angered a very powerful deity. In retribution the deity killed them or you, leading to a divergence in time where in one reality you exist, while in the other you never came to be.
2 Grandfather Paradox: Through some form of magic your character ended up in the past. While there they ended up killing one of the people necessary for their birth or survival, leading to a classic Grandfather Paradox.
3 Divine Intervention: Although fate would have had you die at a specific point, a deity meddled with your fate, preventing your death, creating a divergent timeline.
4 Alternate Outcomes: On one fateful day, your character met their end. However, in a divergent timeline, your character escaped with their life. Torn between the 2 timelines, the flow of time is disrupted, leading to your creation.
5 Chosen by the God of Time: Due to your immense skills, the God of Time chose you to become their agent. Tasked with mending rifts in time, it is your goal to preserve the natural order, even if it means killing your friends.
6 Disruption in the flow of time: Time is barely a perfect system, and you are proof of that. A rift in time has led to your sudden creation. Perhaps you were meant to come later on, or perhaps you were never supposed to exist.

Preserver of Time[edit]

As a paradox your connection to time is strong. You feel the pain that time feels, and therefore your goal is to remedy rifts in time. You feel an obligation to obey the flow of time, and therefore must work to stop anyone inadvertently or purposefully impeding the natural order. This means you may be pitted against your friends and allies in order to stop them from altering time. You don't know what actions will alter time however, so you must use your intuition to determine what will affect time and what won't.

Destroyer of time[edit]

Your hatred for time stems from your creation as a paradox. You view yourself as beyond time, rejected by the fickle nature of the force. Your goal is to strike your own path. You hate the idea that fate is determining your actions, and want to make your own choices, contrary to your destiny. This means that your goal is to act sporadically, to always strive for the less likely outcome, and to make your own decesions, often ones that seem crazy and illogical.

Agent of Self[edit]

Your goal is to work for yourself alone, in an effort to remedy your own timeline. You don't care if your actions harm time, but it isn't necessarily your goal. Your main objective is to reverse whatever made you a paradox, by whatever means necessary. If this isn't attainable, your goal is live the life you would've lived before you became a paradox.


Due to the nature of your creation you have lost your memory of your life previously, forgetting the person you left behind. Your goal can be to seek out who you were before, or to start life over as a new person.

Suggested Characteristics[edit]

Every paradox has certain traits and quirks that they either developed newly or they remember from one of their timelines.

d6 Personality Trait
1 I have no recollection of one or both of my previous lives.
2 Residual memories of both of my past lives still remain, and due to the nature of the alternate times my 2 personalities often conflict.
3 My existence on its own shows me the awesome power of nature and the natural order. I show great reverence for nature and the natural flow of life.
4 Due to a god's intervention in my timeline, I have become loyal to that god, or to a god opposed to them.
5 Due to my nature as 2 separate beings, I have the prefenences of the two, meaning that I enjoy food they enjoyed, and I like art they liked before.
6 Before the divergence of my past life, I was in love or in a very close relationship to a significant person. I now feel compelled to seek out this person, and confess my unrequited love to them, although I may be saddened by what has happened to them, be that their death, or them moving on without me.
d6 Ideal
1 Mender You work to fix rifts in time and assure everything is running as intended (Neutral)
2 Scourge You understand your true role as a paradox become a champion of a new age one without time (Evil)
3 Agent You understand that if time is breaking, then you're not using your abilities correctly. (Lawful)
4 Interloper You understand that you're not supposed to be here, thus you need to get back to your correct timeline. (True Neutral)
5 Naturalist You understand that time—even paradoxes—is natural and deserves no intervention. (Chaotic)
6 Protector You work to prevent an unfathomable, paradoxical end of the multiverse. (Good)
d6 Bond
1 You have a fuzzy memory that seems important for discovering who you are.
2 You remember an unidentifiable figure who appeared in your dreams before you diverged in time.
3 You are committed to time and time only.
4 When you diverged you saw a glimpse of an apocalyptic future. You want to prevent it from happening.
5 You find the past better than the present, and want to revive the old days.
6 You think you saw a past version of yourself once, you want to make sure.
d6 Flaw
1 You often forget where you are and why you're there.
2 You sometimes experience short-term memory loss.
3 You had lost interest in the finite, including life.
4 Nothing seems to matter because time to hard to change.
5 You get too focused on the complex that you sometimes forget the obvious.
6 You don't know how to talk to other people without seeming insane.

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