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The Traveler is a trickster deity worshipped by Jester. As an NPC, the Traveler is portrayed by Matthew Mercer.

He seems to find enjoyment in mischief and pranks. When Jester rearranged all the books in a bookstore, she felt a sense of approval from her deity.[1] He teaches Jester to steal and create chaos but always maintain the balance by giving something back.[2] According to Jester, the Traveler talks a lot about balance.[3]

Jester keeps a sketchbook that she appears to use as a means of communicating her experiences to the Traveler, and as a way of worship.

Jester's holy symbol for the Traveler is a door arch and path.[4]

AppearanceEdit

When the Traveler appeared to Jester in her room at the Pillow Trove in Zadash, he was hooded in a cloak of deep green. She saw verdant irises in the dark space of his hood.
Traveler Symbol

Fanart Concept of a Traveler Symbol (Color)

History Edit

"Steam and Conversation" (2x09) Edit

Jester confided in the Traveler when she didn't receive a package from her mother at the Pillow Trove. He manifested and reassured her, explaining that Jester's mother was unaware of her location at that moment.

"Harvest Close" (2x17) Edit

After Jester had successfully defaced and made her getaway from the Hearth of the Allhammer in Zadash[5], he made his presence known by taking a bite out of the caramel apple she had been eating.[6]

"Lost Treasures" (2x22) Edit

Located among the many religious artifacts found in the Merrow lair, Jester finds two different iterations of the Traveler symbol. Despite having zero knowledge of anyone else worshipping or acknowledging the Traveler, Jester excitedly goes around to show everyone her find.

"Commerce & Chaos" (2x31) Edit

Jester attempted an elaborate prank on the temple to the Platinum Dragon in Zadash that went off the rails and almost got Jester and Nott thrown in prison.[7] While Jester was resting alone in the inn that night, The Traveler appeared to Jester. Jester told the Traveler that she did it to get his attention after feeling abandoned when she was kidnapped. The Traveler claimed never to have abandoned her.[8] He asked to look at the dodecahedron. After examining it, The Traveler told Jester he had never seen anything like it before and she should keep it hidden.[9] The Traveler told her there were others like her but she was his favorite. He told her about a summit of his worshipers happening on the Zenith in Unndilar, and Jester promised to attend.[10]

"A Pirate's Life for Me" (2x41) Edit

The Traveler appeared to Jester on the Squall-Eater to compliment her on her usage of Nolzur's Marvelous Pigments. When Jester asked him for advice on wooing Fjord, he noted that there were many enchantments he could teach her. He reiterated the planned summit of his followers, and asked Jester again to attend. [11]

"The Stowaway" (2x45)Edit

Jester and The Traveler vs the blue dragon by Amy King

Fan art of The Traveler helps Jester block an attack from the blue dragon, by Amy King.[art 2]

While fighting a blue dragon, Fjord and Jester both cast Blink on themselves. As a result, Jester could not see Fjord for most of the battle. At one point while he was on the Ethereal Plane, the rest of the party in the lair at the time were also hidden. Jester, badly injured and unable to see anyone else, said "I'm all alone"[12] before attempting an attack on the dragon. The attack missed, but luckily she was able to Blink into the Ethereal Plane.

When Jester reappeared, she was still within range of the dragon and severely hurt even after healing herself.[13] The dragon attacked Jester again. She closed her eyes waiting for the attack to come. She heard the voice of The Traveler in her head say "Don't worry. I'm watching." She felt a hand push her arm up. Jester's shield deflected the dragon's attack, causing two teeth to break out of its mouth.[14] All of the Mighty Nein and Twiggy eventually managed to escape.

"Duplicity" (2x55)Edit

Jester cast Revivify on Caduceus after he was accidentally killed in battle. As she placed her hands on Caduceus, The Traveler's hand appeared with Jester's hand and his voice said "I'm proud of you." The spell was successful and Caduceus woke up.[15]

"The Favor" (2x56)Edit

Beau pointed out to Jester that a house in Asarius had a symbol that looked like The Traveler's on the door. Jester knocked on the door and spoke to Kovak, a very old gnoll. Kovak told her The Traveler came to him a few years ago and taught him to play pranks.[16] Jester revealed that The Traveler first appeared to her when she was a young girl, appearing in a form close to her own age.

"Causatum" (2x70)Edit

Feeling lost over Yasha's defection, Jester reaches out to The Traveler, who appears to her. He reminds her of the upcoming TravelerCon, saying he was thinking of holding it on the Menagerie Coast area island of Rumblecusp. Jester suggests Kravaraad, the volcano in the Greying Wildlands, and he agrees. She tells him that a lot of the world is sad, and he comforts her by reminding her that much of it is beautiful, too, and that she also gets to be happy. He also says there are many gods' eyes on the group, and suggests that The Stormlord is still watching over Yasha.

Trivia Edit

  • The Traveler that Jester worships is not the same as the one in the Eberron setting of Dungeons & Dragons, as Matthew Mercer confirmed that they only share the same name. He also said that the Traveler may not necessarily be a god.[17]
    • Kashaw's patron Vesh is not technically a god, even though he believes she is.[18] Even so, he is a Life Domain cleric, confirming entities that are not gods may still grant clerics power.
  • In the Dwendalian Empire, "worship outside the approved idolatry is met with imprisonment".[19] The Traveler isn't one of the six approved deities and worshiping him is illegal, though most citizens of the Dwendalian Empire seem unaware of his existence.
  • A common theory in the fandom is that The Traveler is actually Artagan from the first campaign, given new power and influence in this dimension.  The theory goes that, after Vox Machina completed their end of their deal with him and built a doorway from the Feywild to Exandria, Artagan took on the role of The Traveler in the hopes of finding a path to godhood.  There is some evidence that is commonly cited, including:
    • Jester's drawings are frequently described in a style that is very reminiscent of Garmelie's (another form Artagan takes) preferred art style.
    • Jester's pranks resemble the pranks Garmelie had Vox Machina play as part of his deal when they entered Syngorn.
    • Artagan is commonly linked to the color green and the brief bit we've seen of The Traveler, the only physical description given of him is him having green eyes.
    • The Traveler's symbol is that of an open doorway leading to a path, a possible connection to the doorway Vox Machina made for Artagan to cross over with.
    • His name is "The Traveler" implying he traveled from someplace else, potentially the Feywild.
    • The Traveler and Artagan are both powerful mischief-makers.
    • Kovak referred to The Traveler as one of the "fair folk", a common term for fey.[20]
  • Speculation has led that the Traveler was disguised as the half-elven man working at the Landlocked Lady called Keelyn. This because of his bright green eyes and red hair they both share.[21]

References Edit

  1. See "Curious Beginnings" (2x01) at 1:24:38.
  2. See "A Pirate's Life for Me" (2x41) at 2:57:19.
  3. See "Homeward Bound" (2x48) from 2:34:11 through 2:35:01.  Jester leaves a figure of The Traveler and a pamphlet for Yussa
  4. See "The Gates of Zadash" (2x08) at 0:45:21.
  5. See "Harvest Close" (2x17) at 1:18:11.
  6. See "Harvest Close" (2x17) at 1:21:45.
  7. See "Commerce & Chaos" (2x31) from 2:02:10 through 2:30:42.
  8. See "Commerce & Chaos" (2x31) from 2:31:41 through 2:34:29.
  9. See "Commerce & Chaos" (2x31) from 2:34:30 through 2:36:00.
  10. See "Commerce & Chaos" (2x31) from 2:36:06 through 2:37:39.
  11. See "A Pirate's Life for Me" (2x41) at 2:55:29.
  12. See "The Stowaway" (2x45) at 4:22:37.
  13. See "The Stowaway" (2x45) at 4:49:38.  Laura reveals Jester had 13 hit points at this time.
  14. See "The Stowaway" (2x45) at 40:34.
  15. See "Duplicity" (2x55) from 4:05:11 through 4:06:44.
  16. See "The Favor" (2x56) from 0:41:13 through 0:41:58.
  17. See "Talks Machina #53: 'The Open Road'" (TMx53) at 0:48:35.  Matt notes that the Traveler is a "unique entity" who isn't a member of any pantheon of Exandria.
  18. See "Talks Machina: Campaign Wrap-up" (Sx31) at 1:28:52.
  19. See "Curious Beginnings" (2x01) at 0:18:56.
  20. See "The Favor" (2x56) at 0:41:24.
  21. See "GenCon 2019 Critical Role Talks Machina Panel" at 0:33:25
Art:
  1. Fan art of The Traveler, by BlackSalander (source).  Used with permission.
  2. Fan art of The Traveler helps Jester block an attack from the blue dragon, by Amy King (source).  Used with permission.
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