The Knights of the Virindi Guard was established in the year 692 of the 4th Age when the King of Riftwood, King Hamar of House Askir, razed the Capital City of Myrkir, Virindi.
House Aerbax and the ruling House at the time, House Askir, had over a century of good relations. House Aerbax held the Stewardship of Riftwood throughout the Age of Opulence. Through the jealous manipulations of Duchess Marquelle of House Alsekr, however, a great war known as the War of Crows would engulf Riftwood in turmoil.
Though Prince Hamar and the young Atlan Aerbax grew up together as friends, the jealous Duchess Marquelle became the wedge to drive the two boys apart. Prince Hamar’s mother died when he was very young, leaving a void in his life. The Duchess quickly seized the opportunity to become a warm mother figure to the young prince. Over the years, her influence grew and the two boys grew apart.
On his ascension to the Throne, King Hamar declared that he intended on breaking custom and appointing Duchess Marquelle to be his chief adviser rather than the Duke of House Aerbax . Over the next several years, The Duchess uses her influence to convince King Hamar that House Aerbax is plotting against the Crown.
In the year 692, King Hamar lays siege to Virindi, the Capital City of Myrkir, marking the beginning of the War of Crows. After a month-long siege and several attempts to assault the city, Virindi is low on supplies and morale. In a desperate attempt to give his people a chance to flee the city, Duke Atlan rallies his forces to sally forth and meet the King on the field of battle. There are heavy casualties on both sides in the fierce battle, and Duke Atlan is gravely injured. The gambit works, however, and the people of Virindi escape with their lives. As the battle continues to rage, thirteen of Duke Atlan’s most trusted Knights manage to pull him away from the battle, saving his life. Over the course of the next few months, as Atlan convalesces, the thirteen Knights swear oaths to protect their Master at the cost of their own lives, to serve the people of Myrkir to their dying breath, and to avenge the fallen City of Virindi. This was the birth of the Knights of the Virindi Guard.
The Role and Structure
The Knights of the Virindi Guard, otherwise referred to as the Virindi Guard, are tasked with direct service to the Crown. The Knights may assume many roles, depending on the needs of the Crown:
- Guarding the Monarch and the Royal Family
- Protecting the People of Aurielle
- Patrolling various regions in Riftwood in service to the Crown
- Acting as diplomats and dignitaries
- Direct combat in service to the Crown
Essentially, the Virindi Guard acts on behalf of the Crown in any matters required.
The structure of the Virindi Guard is fairly centralized, though individual Knights do carry tremendous amounts of autonomy. Commands are issued by the Crown to the Grand Marshal. The Grand Marshal oversees the management of the Order, its logistics, and financial assets. The Grand Marshal is the primary Honor Guard to the Crown and is usually found in close proximity to the Monarch.
Overseen by the Grand Marshal are a handful of Marshals. Marshals, like all of the leadership roles in the Order, play a dual role. The Marshal is expected to manage the administrative aspects of his or her subordinates, while maintaining combat skills and equipment.
Marshals oversee several Justicars, who are the first-line leaders of the primary combatants of the Order, the Sentinel. Justicars act as a Sergeant, overseeing daily training and tasks.
The Sentinel is the primary fighter of the Order. A Sentinel must be a master in several forms of combat, a brilliant tactician, and carry a Knightly dignity at all times.
Lastly, the Squire is a prospective Knight, wishing to gain entry into the Order. The Squire works directly for a Justicar, learning the ways of the Order while performing the menial day-to-day tasks. Once a Squire has been deemed worthy, he or she is Knighted by the Crown and given the title of Sentinel.
All members of the Knights of the Virindi Guard must have attained Knighthood and spent time as a Squire. If a Citizen possessing title of Knight wishes to gain entry into the Order, he or she must still undergo time as a Squire. For this reason, it is rare to see a member of a Lesser Noble House or a member of the Nobility degrade themselves in such a way to gain entry. The Order is a great pathway for members of lower classes of Citizenry to gain social mobility.