–With the fall of House Trevelyan, House Calador is now the second strongest House within Graycastle. Headed by High Lord Percival Calador, who also serves as Coin Master for Graycastle. He is in charge of large economic processes, and any and all development is approved by him. Percival has reputation as being rude, and very forthright with his opinion, but he is far from cruel and is in practice very fair. Of all the High Houses, they are the most recent to ascend to that distinction, as only in recent generations have they amassed enough wealth and influence to be worthy of being welcomed into those ranks. This House is available to join as a Vassal.
- Percival killed Marek in order to become High Lord.
- Percival beat a noblewoman he was betrothed to in his late teens.
- He kept Juliet locked in a tower until her early 20s, like some kind of fairytale princess.
- House Calador is an old House, dating back to the founding of Mercia, but is viewed as a kind of mudblood house.
- Their House has always been kinder to the peasantry than others, given their underdog status and how many of the Lords and Ladies have wed common folk.
- Percival has refused every offer for Juliet’s hand, rumor being that he intends for her to marry a Royal.
- Juliet has been training to be a knight, which is unusual for any member of a High House.
The Steel Wardens
– The Order of Steel is a knightly order dedicated to the path of Justice. While they are headquartered in Coventry, the Steel Wardens are free roaming within the bounds of the Federation, and act as embodiment of the law within its boundaries. Their members come from all walks of life, and while they are offered training in the martial arts of hand to hand, archery, and horsemanship, physical prowess is not the key tenant for what is required to earn your spurs as a knight–a deep understanding of the law and the temperament towards fair application of justice is. Thus, all Wardens are expected to be well versed in the law, and any law breaking or criminal activity is grounds for immediate expulsion.
Knights of Justice can be scholarly men or women with soft hands and a fear of danger, or they can be grizzled bounty hunters who infiltrate bandit organizations to hunt down criminals and killers. In the pursuit of Justice, a Steel Warden can walk any path necessary to achieve it. While the Order is largely composed of knights in the traditional sense—men and women skilled with weapons, mounted on fierce war horses, and clad in heavy armor, they are not a military order but a law enforcement organization. Within the Federation they have a role above most city guardsmen, but below the leaders of the city-nations, however they tend to work hand in hand with local officials. The pursuit of Justice can cause conflict with powerful leaders, however the Steel Wardens do not internally punish their own if their cause is Just. They remain vigilant towards the tendency to fall into Vengeance within their ranks. The Wardens are less of a military order and more of a law keeping order. They are of lower station than Nobility within the Federation and so a solid case must be made in order to prosecute one of the High Nobility.
While nothing prevents a Steel Warden from joining other organizations or serving other causes, they are expected to always serve Justice first and foremost.
Wardens are the keepers of the Brands, and are the ones responsible for administering Brands for law breakers.
Tenants of the Order:
- Justice is applied fairly to all, regardless of their station in life.
- Execute Justice, and resist Vengeance.
- The Laws of Sky come before the Laws of the Land come before the Laws of the City come before the Laws of the People.
- Be courageous, do not falter in the application of Justice.
- Through Justice, divinity.
Oath of a Warden:
I have chosen to walk the Path of Justice, and I understand what is required of me. I swear my loyalty to Sky Above and will faithfully pursue Justice in service of the Divine. I shall steel my heart, and in so doing be a pillar of Justice among the people. I swear that I shall stand by the convictions of the Steel Wardens and shall not be swayed from the Path by wealth, love, or power.
Players can apply to be a Steel Warden at character creation. Steel Wardens are relatively independent, but they are an established and respected knight order within the Federation. While they are (currently) the only accepted Order of Knights within the Federation, that does not mean that there are not other paths to knighthood. Nobles and royals retain the privilege of naming their own knights, for example, but the definition of what it means to be a “knight” is much more muddled in those cases.
The Raven Company
The Raven Company, colloquially known as “The Company”, is an organization of sanctioned thrill seekers. Mercenaries, explorers, and adventurers of all walks of life can find themselves working with The Company. The Company is an independent organization, headquartered out of a large roadside inn at the heart of the Federation called the Raven’s Roost. However, they are wholly independent in any official capacity from any of the Federation city-nations.
The Raven’s Roost was a natural gathering spot for men and women to boast of their exploits over a tankard of ale, and as the stories and recountings of daring exploits grew, so did people coming to the tavern to seek brave souls and foolhardy adventurers. Seeing an opportunity, the owner of the inn, a fierce Andalian matron named Gunhilda Ravyn founded the Company.
The rules of the Company are simple, and keep with the teachings of Power:
- Keep what you kill.
- Do as you promise.
- No story is better than a true story.
There are few requirements to be a part of The Company, in truth anyone who spends any amount of time at the Roost can technically consider themselves a part of The Company, and while Gunhilda retains ownership of the Raven’s Roost, leadership within the guild is ever changing. All members of The Company follow who they wish to follow, or do as they wish and operate independently from any other members. In-fighting is common, as egos will clash, however Gunhilda will immediately toss all who threaten the sanctuary of the Roost. As a house rule, bloodshed happens outside the doors of the Roost, not within.
The Company has a long standing tradition of assigning titles and nicknames to others based on their deeds, placing more reverence and respect on the actions an individual has taken to earn their name than they do to a powerful name given at birth. In other words the Company doesn’t really care if you’re born to a powerful family; king or peasant, the name you earn is what matters.
Being a member of the Raven Company is as simple as calling yourself one. They are a group of braggarts and glory seekers, but the key tennant is that their stories have to be true, for them Power comes through earnesty and the strength to be the person you claim to be. As far as the game world is concerned, the world views the Company as a source of hired muscle, often for heroic deeds regarding monsters, but just as often for nefarious deeds regarding personal disputes. Their members are, given the nature of the world, almost entirely Godsworn. Compared to the Steel Wardens, The Company is drastically fewer in number, rarely existing beyond two dozen. Individuals who join the Company, and fail to represent it well, will find themselves ostracized, with no one to listen to their stories or share tankards with. Given the semi-immortal nature of the Godsworn, this is often an effective enough method for quelling dissent. The role of whoever presently heads the Company is more to act as a liaison between the members and those who have come to the Company seeking aid.
“Unyielding We Endure”
Great House Morstein is now the third strongest House within Greycastle, even if the rise and fall of other Houses has never been of much interest to them. Currently headed by the High Lord Daedalus Morstein; an elderly former warrior known to be a strict, stern, humourless, decisive, iron-handed and no-nonsense disciplinarian with a tendency to be both just and merciless in equal measure. An authoritative and intimidating man with a penchant for down-to-earth realpolitik, he holds an equivocally ambiguous position somewhat close to a Military Seneschal within the King’s court. However, it is clear that he doesn’t like to be bothered, and has given his eldest son Lord Hieronymus a leave to handle most of the family business these days.
House Morstein has always been considered something of an enigmatic and reclusive powerhouse within the Federation. They are wealthy, fairly influential but private people who do not seem to be interested in the usual petty political games and other ambitious nonsense the nobility is stereotypically known for.
They have less soldiers than the House Calador, but make up the lack of quantity with sheer quality. House Morstein has always trained remarkably capable and deadly elite soldiers who they prefer keep in reserve for truly serious emergencies. Acting as a sort of enforcers and “problem solvers” on behalf of the Crown, House Morstein has long since gained reputation of being ruthless, calculating, pragmatic and positively Machiavellian family that are extraordinarily loyal to one another.
They claim to be one of the oldest established families on the continent. Their earliest recorded ancestors were Zealans; their long history dating at least as far back as the Zealan civil war. This makes their family at least 800 years old. Centuries have come and gone, during which a lot has undoubtedly happened, but House Morstein has successfully endured the tests of time.
They have been a Great House within the Federation for quite a long time by now, but have always been content to stay in the sidelines. According to some old records, they rose into their current prominent position after performing a series of services and tasks to the Crown. The records do not mention what those tasks were.
As far as anyone remembers, Morsteins have always been very reclusive and secretive people. The members of the family never speak of family business to outsiders, and do not take well to any attempts of coercion. Though they continue to leally serve the interest of the Crown, they clearly prefer to be left to their own devices whenever merely possible.
This House is available to join as a Vassal or a Retainer. The House recruits trustworthy retainers, sworn soldiers and oathmen from nobility and commonfolk alike.
Applying to play a Morstein family member is invitation only until further notice.
Rumours & Impressions
- The family are very secretive and remarkably tight-lipped about their dealings, so not a lot is known for absolute certainty.
- There would seem to be something “off” about each and every single Morstein for some reason. It is difficult to pinpoint what or where exactly it stems from, but they have an uncanny way of making most people feel nervous and at unease.
- There is a rumour that the family pays a substantially increased amount of taxes to the Crown. Incidentally, any attempts to investigate the evident oddness of the House usually get stonewalled by the crown authorities.
- There is a rumour that High Lord Daedalus Morstein is ready to retire so that his son Hieronymus could succeed him as the Head of the House.
- House Morstein is known to be a highly martial and militaristic family, but education, high literacy and scholarly pursuits are considered equally important walks of life.