Tuesday, April 12, 2011

[D20] K is for Knightly Orders

There are two major Knightly Orders, the Order of St. Nobian and St. Uriens and the Order of the Ash, in the Ashford Valley. 

The Order of St. Nobian and St. Uriens is an ancient, and former holy, order of knights. Originally an order of priests, they evolved over the years from a monastic order to a secular one, shedding the priests for knights. In the process, they retained two influences from their saintly patrons - Travel (from St. Uriens) and Healing (from St. Nobian). The majority of the knights travel around the Ashford Valley, righting wrongs, acting as judges and healers, and defending the weak against incursions of Bugbears and other humanoids, as well as from bandits and thieves. The Order has a chapter house in each town, usually a two-story building with stables below and simple accommodations above. Since the knights are abroad most of the time, the houses are cared for by trusted servants or retired knights. The current headmaster is Sir Albert.

The Order of the Ash was formed on the bank of the River Ash, at the ford where Ashford town proper was built. The current rulers of the valley are all members of the Order and so are their household knights. Every five years, the knights gather at Ashford town to renew their oaths of allegiance and have a tourney, with jousting and a festival. At that time, the Lord of Ashford Valley, Sir Raphel, grants knighthood on deserving squires. The Order of the Ash has had problems in the past of some knights going bad, or in the parlance of the order "taking a dip in the Soot," which has caused the order some uncomfortable moments. The last knight who went rogue was Sir Pauli and he disappeared in the Rolling Hils a decade ago, after being pursued by Sir Hoel. No sign has been seen of that evil knight but treasure-seekers still search for his bones (and the loot he stole).

Both orders cooperate together (mostly) and are excellent goals for PCs to attain - perhaps as a result of the defeat of the Necromancer? Perhaps.

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