Monday, February 1, 2010

Warden's Crest

In the year 1237, a young man named Branoc Tessguard led a group of like-minded men against a tyrant in the northern part of Mierg. It was a dark and stormy night. Lightning flashed in the black sky and rain pounded the muddy ground as Tessguard and his fellows stormed the tyrant’s keep and liberated the people of the times from his iron rule. Heralded as champions once they were done, Branoc gathered his men around him and decided to dedicate his life to the pursuit of seeing justice done in the burgeoning kingdoms of men. He formed a knighthood that night and called them the Storm Knights, for it would be in dark and stormy times that mankind would need them most.

Branoc’s legacy traveled far and wide and many warriors sharing his love for peace and justice flocked to his new banner. The ranks of the new Storm Knights swelled and the banner of a rider bearing a shield with a lightning bolt on it flew proudly from castle to town walls in the south. Branoc led the Storm Knights against bandits on the highway, tyrants in the cities and the foul Primordials that prowled the edges of civilization. His knighthood were seen as defenders for the common man and served no king directly until the coronation of King Cyrus in Mierg in the year 1256, where they pledged their loyalty to the southern kingdoms of men.

During their rise to power and the years of peace that followed, they became a favorite with the common people of the world. Men could relate to their bravery. Women swooned for their heroes in shining armor. Children sang songs about their heroics and played at being a Storm Knight in the backyards and alleyways of the world. All was good, for a time.

The knights’ symbol was a rider with a shield emblazoned with a lightning bolt on it, but this was not their only great treasure. Before Tessguard’s passing he made a deal with a band of Brotherhood monks. In exchange for a service that the monks required (the return of a sacred relic that a rock Primordial horde had overrun) they would fashion Branoc, and all his knights, special armor that would aid them in their fight for the light. Branoc agreed and shortly thereafter delivered the missing relic to the Brotherhood’s care. True to their word, the monk had armor made and prayed over it, blessing it with great vitality, strength, and most of all purity of spirit.

The Storm Knights donned this new armor and called it the Warden’s Crest for the protective symbols that were etched into the leather, scale, or steel surfaces. For generations, new knights would inherit the Warden’s Crest from their fathers. When a set was lost, it was sought out at all costs. Even with this diligence, many Warden Crests were lost even before the Great War began and turned the Storm Knights from their roles as protectorates to the people.

These days the story of the Warden’s Crest has all but faded from history. Some of the descendants of the Storm Knights living in Has Esperia in Mierg still know the tale of the special suits of armor, as does the Brotherhood who fashioned them so long ago. But few possess the sacred items in this modern time of trials. Those that do keep it to themselves, hoping that one day the merit of a true knighthood will rise up again and resume what the Storm Knights were once charged with. Some believe that the new group known as the Hundred Men might be such knights. Others hold out hope for a reformed Storm Knight to rise again, like Branoc once did, and lead the group to salvation. Still others believe that there can never be another who will wear the Warden’s Crest again.

The truth remains to be seen. All that is known is that unless you are pure of spirit, selfless in thought, and righteous in action, the Warden’s Crest is nothing more than common, light armor.

Warden’s Crest
Type: Blessed armor

Description: leather, scale or steel armor with sigils and holy words inscribed on its surface

Armor Bonus: considered heavy armor (+2 to Armor SR)

Powers: +2 to Evasion, +15 to total HP, allows the use of Cunning or Fortitude Fate twice per session

Requirements: only works for those without selfishness or greed in their heart; must have Spirit 4 or greater and at least 3 powers from either the Combat Mastery or Tactician talent trees.

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