While heresies emerge within the various religions in several different forms, most orders have a history of exacting punishment upon those who become perverted or those bold souls who neither accept nor live according to the dictates of their order’s dogma. Despite this, some heretics boldly proclaim their heretical views in open opposition towards the ecclesiastical hierarchy of their church, while others strictly adhere to their order’s teachings, posing as pious practitioners of the faith in an attempt to influence the masses, and guide them towards the new light and understanding they have received. Although the heretic theologist is not necessarily opposed to the leaders or doctrines of his faith, he does believe he has found a different path to honoring her god–one that deals with abstract mysteries, binding pacts, and secret initiations meant to reveal greater understanding of the divine being they claim to worship. The heretic theologist continues to receive spells from his god, while simultaneously gaining access to more mysterious and eldritch abilities, all of which stem from the same divine source. While genuine seekers of divine truth view this as a sign that the heretic theologist has found a new path towards greater enlightenment, she is often viewed as confused and misguided by her superiors as pertaining to the truths and doctrines sanctioned by her order. (Original Concept by Bardess)
Primary Class: Cleric.
Secondary Class: Witch.
Hit Dice: d8.
Bonus Skills and Ranks: The heretic theologist may select three witch skills to add to her class skills in addition to the normal clerci class skills. The heretic theologist gains a number of ranks at each level equal to 2 + Int modifier.
Weapon and Armor Proficiency: The heretic theologist is proficient with all simple weapons and the favored weapon of her deity. She is also proficient with light armor, medium armor, and with shields (except tower shields).
Spellcasting: A heretic theologist casts divine spells drawn from the cleric spell list and a number of additional spells drawn from the witch spell list. Like other spellcasters, a heretic theologist can cast only a certain number of spells of each spell level per day. Her base daily spell allotment is given on Table: Heretic Theologist. To prepare her spells, she must commune with her divine familiar (see Divine Familiar), and casts any witch’s spells that she has prepared as divine spells. A heretic theologist otherwise casts spells as a cleric equal to her heretic theologist level. In addition, she receives bonus spells per day if she has a high Wisdom score.
Domain: This is exactly like the cleric ability of the same name, except that the heretic theologist gains access to only a single domain among those granted by her deity. The heretic theologist may also select the new Witchcraft subdomain, even if her deity doesn’t normally grant it.
Heretic’s Familiar (Ex): At 1st level, a heretic theologist gains the witch’s familiar ability. However, unlike a normal witch’s familiar, hers is actually an aspect of her deity that serves as a divine conduit directly to her deity. In this way, she is able to work outside the normal confines of her church’s hierarchy and serve her deity as she sees fit without reprisal from other members of her church’s clergy.
A heretic theologist must commune with her familiar each day to prepare her spells. A heretic theologist’s familiar begins play storing all 0–level and 1st–level cleric spells (including all subsequent levels of cleric spells as she gains experience), and all 0–level witch’s spells. The heretic theologist also selects a number of additional 1st-level witch spells equal to her Wisdom modifier to store in her familiar. At each new heretic theologist level, she adds one new spells of any spell level or levels that she can cast (based on her new heretic theologist level) from the witch’s spell list to her familiar. However, unlike a witch’s familiar, a heretic theologist cannot add additional witch’s spells to her familiar through any ritual or similar method. If the familiar is lost or dies, the heretic theologist can no longer cast witch spells, but continues to cast cleric spells with a –2 penalty to her caster level until she replaces it (see Familiars in the Core Rulebook). The new familiar knows all the witch spells known by the previous familiar. This ability replaces channel energy 1d6, 5d6, and 9d6.
Patron: At 1st level, a heretic theologist selects a patron from those listed in the witch class description. Her chosen patron is considered her second domain and adds her patron spells to her list of domain spells. She can cast any patron spells their equivalent domain spell slots as if they were domain spells. This ability and hex replace the cleric’s second domain.
Sanctioned Heresy: A heretic theologist has an unorthodox view on faith, religion, and moral ethics. As such, a heretic theologist can have an alignment very different from that of her deity without losing her powers. However, an evil cleric of a good deity would soon attract the wrath of her church once discovered (and visa versa). Beginning at 1st level, a heretic theologist can cast a cleric or witch spell that opposes her alignment or that of her deity (see Chaotic, Evil, Good, and Lawful spells) once per day. At 4th level and every three levels thereafter, a heretic theologist can cast such spells an additional time per day, up to a maximum of seven times per day at 19th level. This ability replaces spontaneous casting.
Channel Energy (Su): This is exactly like the cleric ability of the same name, except that the amount of damage dealt or healed by the heretic theologist is equal to 1d6 points of damage at 2nd level, plus 1d6 points of damage for every three heretic theologist levels beyond 2nd (2d6 at 5th, 3d6 at 8th, and so on), as indicated on Table: Heretic Theologist.
Hex: At 3rd level, a heretic theologist gains the witch’s hex ability. She may choose a hex at 3rd level and again at 6th level and every six levels thereafter. At 12th level, whenever she could select a hex, she can choose a major hex instead.
Domains: The following domains complement the heretic theologist multiclass archetype: Knowledge, Luck, Magic, Madness, and Rune.
Patrons: The following patrons complement the heretic theologist multiclass archetype: Ancestors, Boundaries, Deception, Devotion, Enchantment, Fate, Healing, Insanity, Occult, Portents, Spirits, Trickery, and Wisdom.
Table: Heretic Theologist