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I want to know if I can prepare a Contingency with Dimension Door to teleport me away if an item that may affect a creature's soul is within 125 feet of me.

More specifically, I would like to be able to evade both standalone items (including but not limited to the Blackrazor) and enchanted items (including but not limited to active Magic Jars).

I know that the contingent spell doesn't have to be triggered by something the caster is aware of, but the aforementioned trigger is both centered on the caster and specific. Nevertheless, is this allowable?

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  • \$\begingroup\$ If you modify the question to not just be about what a valid trigger is, I think it should be no problem to reopen it. For example, you could ask about how to best use Dimension Door in this context, which is also an interesting question, and already is discussed in MivaScotts answer. \$\endgroup\$ May 21 at 5:10
  • \$\begingroup\$ Also, apologies of not realizing earlier this is a duplicate . I should have when I drafted an answer that essentially was merely referring to that other question. \$\endgroup\$ May 21 at 5:13
  • \$\begingroup\$ I mean, the associated question is a question that asks how to define a threshold of detection; this one is about whether the aforementioned threshold is validly defined. A similar answer being surfacially prompted doesn't mean that both questions are the same. \$\endgroup\$ May 21 at 22:38

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Work with your DM, and prepare for disappointment

You'll have to talk to your DM to see what is and is not permissable. They would have final word on whether or not the spell is triggered.

Simple things like, "When I'm engulfed under water, trigger water breathing." is pretty simple. So is, "If I'm reduced to 0 hp, automatically cast a 5th-level cure wounds on myself."

But triggers of "something is near (or within 125 ft)", is a little more subjective. First, you'll have to talk about how far away the spell can sense a trigger. 125 feet shouldn't be too bad. Given that, it can be triggered by something in the next room, or even a few rooms away. Or the floor above or below you. And so on. So it could go off far more often than you suspect.

Next, what is "affect a creature's soul?"

The rogue's dagger can affect a creature's soul by sending it to the dark waters. A priest giving a blessing (not the spell, but ceremonial rites) could affect a creature's soul for the better. You don't want the spell going off because someone was courteous when you sneezed.

And last, and I've always wondered about this, is, where are you going to teleport to?

I see a lot of people talk about using dimension door with contingency, but I never see an explanation of where they plan to go. If you say, "away", in what direction is "away"?

Consider:

If you would arrive in a place already occupied by an object or a creature, you and any creature traveling with you each take 4d6 force damage, and the spell fails to teleport you.

I would say that a good percentage of the time "away" will put you into a solid object: wall, another creature, side of a mountain, etc. Or maybe even a worse situation. Yes, you're farther away from the soul-sucker, but now you're in a room filled with monsters.

So to sum up... It may work, you'll need DM buy in, and hope you're DM isn't a jerk and either sets it off at inopportune moments or moves you from a neutral situation to a bad situation.

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  • \$\begingroup\$ I chuckled at teleporting on someone saying "bless you" within 125 feet, but I think that since the "soul" is a tangible concept in regards to magic it shouldn't obey metaphor rules; also a rite, while it can affect a soul by changing where it ends when the creature dies, can't count as an item. Now, the teleporting target is a bit fuzzy since the spell doesn't explicitly target a creature, but it will affect the caster regardless. I was thinking of the target as a "random location 500 feet away and 45 degrees up" being safely outside the bounds of a place within a solid object. \$\endgroup\$ May 20 at 23:03
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    \$\begingroup\$ @ThemistoklisGkasios, I would differ on the soul being a tangible concept. There has been some debate regarding sending messages and being stolen by a night hag lately with regarding souls. They are not that clear cut. As for "500 ft away and 45 degrees up"; that will put you 353.55339 ft in the air. Good luck on the landing. \$\endgroup\$
    – MivaScott
    May 20 at 23:17
  • \$\begingroup\$ well; I am interpreting the soul as an entity (a Java Object, if you will) to be distinct from a creature; thusly, Sending shoudn't affect a standalone soul. Now whether an Astral Projecting soul receive a Sending sent to its correponding body, we would need to experiment on that (a.k.a. depends on the DM). A Night Hag's Soul Bag, though, is a perfect candidate to trigger the condition mentioned in the question, as it is an item that applies an effect on a soul; namely, binding a soul inside it. It isn't the hag's action, but the magic flesh bag (in this case). \$\endgroup\$ May 20 at 23:39
  • \$\begingroup\$ Also, the nice thing with the "500 ft away and 45 degrees up" is that you always stay at least 100 feet away from the Magic Jar that triggered the Contigency. \$\endgroup\$ May 20 at 23:41

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