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By myself I can be quite persuasive.

With a letter out front, I'm powerful.

With two behind, you'd better act fast.

With three out front, I bring great suffering.

What is this strong word?

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  • $\begingroup$ I can add more lines/words if this goes on much longer, but I think everyone will find the accepted answer fits far better than these tries. $\endgroup$ – Roland Aug 21 '15 at 17:52
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Again! This is starting to get eerie! The word is

URGE

By myself I can be quite persuasive.

Urges are certainly persuasive

With a letter out front, I'm powerful.

SURGE adds one letter and becomes a powerful force (e.g. power surge)

With two behind, you'd better act fast.

URGENT adds two letters to the back and becomes a force pushing you to move promptly.

With three out front, I bring great suffering.

SCOURGE adds three letters up front and becomes a plague/calamity that spreads suffering.

I have no related pun this time.

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    $\begingroup$ Keep this up Roland, and people are going to think we're in cahoots $\endgroup$ – NeedAName Aug 21 '15 at 17:56
  • $\begingroup$ Sockpuppet alert!!! It's the new Gamow-Martin! No, only kidding :-) $\endgroup$ – Rand al'Thor Aug 21 '15 at 17:58
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    $\begingroup$ Wow. Perhaps we're twins, separated at birth, only to find each other 23 years later through a shared predisposition for puzzle solving! May I ask your age? ;) $\endgroup$ – Roland Aug 21 '15 at 18:33
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    $\begingroup$ Wait, are you 23 years old as well? $\endgroup$ – NeedAName Aug 21 '15 at 18:41
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    $\begingroup$ twins confirmed - someone throw a reunion party! $\endgroup$ – Alex Aug 21 '15 at 19:52
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By myself I can be quite persuasive.

An OLD person can be quite persuasive, since age brings wisdom - they should be listened to.

With a letter out front, I'm powerful.

GOLD is power: in the immortal words of Artemis Fowl, aurum potestas est.

With two behind, you'd better act fast.

As you get OLDER, you need to act fast before it's too late!

With three out front, I bring great suffering.

A KOBOLD is a wicked mythological creature, which brings suffering to many.

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    $\begingroup$ This works quite well, but I must repeat the puzzlemaker's catchphrase: My intended solution fits the riddle better. +1 $\endgroup$ – Roland Aug 21 '15 at 16:42
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Is it:

An Act

By myself I can be quite persuasive.

A good act (performance) can be persuasive

With a letter out front, I'm powerful.

A Pact : When you make a pact with someone, it's a powerful link.

With two behind, you'd better act fast.

Actor , when an actor play, he needs to remember his lines quickly.

With three out front, I bring great suffering.

An impact : A violent impact can bring suffering


Just realize that there is the word act in one of the line so it's problably the wrong answer

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  • $\begingroup$ I like the first line, and REACT does fit well, but I intended for "two behind" to mean two letters are added at the end. $\endgroup$ – Roland Aug 21 '15 at 17:37
  • $\begingroup$ Oups, read too fast... $\endgroup$ – TroyAndAbed Aug 21 '15 at 17:40
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Another possibility (if a bit cheeky)

Tom

By myself I can be quite persuasive.

Tom Riddle was very persuasive to those that followed or opposed him.

With a letter out front, I'm powerful.

Atom, the building blocks of the universe, or an atom bomb is very powerful.

With two behind, you'd better act fast.

Tommy, for tommy gun will make you take cover fast.

With three out front, I bring great suffering.

Bottom - Many a bottom has brought great suffering to those that came after.

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  • 2
    $\begingroup$ Or, perhaps, being on the bottom economically or socially can cause you to suffer - no, no, I like yours better. $\endgroup$ – Bailey M Aug 21 '15 at 17:03
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    $\begingroup$ Those bottoms are indeed a bit cheeky! $\endgroup$ – Rand al'Thor Aug 21 '15 at 17:04
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Could it be,

Imp

By myself I can be quite persuasive.

Tyrion Lannister in Game of Thrones is an imp and is very persuasive

With a letter out front, I'm powerful.

A pimp holds a lot of power over his girls

With two behind, you'd better act fast.

If someone has to impel you to do something you probably don't want to do it, so do it fast

With three out front, I bring great suffering.

Shrimp. people with shell fish allergies can die from eating a shrimp

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I have a feeling I am onto it:

By myself I can be quite persuasive.

WORD - words are very persuasive

With a letter out front, I'm powerful.

SWORD - swords are mighty objects

This one I'm stuck on.

With three out front, I bring great suffering.

KEYWORD - this one is a huge stretch, but people often forget their keywords (passwords?)

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