A fantasy version of the Klan, where it's "Grand Wizard" really is a mage, and a dangerous one at that. Instead of hating blacks most of all, they hate non humans most of all (although they are no friends of black people either and certainly don't let them join.)
Historicly, we have had plenty of rl groups like the Taliban and the Puritans who supressed anything which was in any way fun. What if there was some group that was the opposite? (which in time would cause problems of it's own for the civilians under their control.)
A demagogue imimates the warrior-king or military officer of a long past age-his followers have the uniforms and weapons of that past time and are a dangerous group.
One day a year is the Day of Turning where those on the bottom of the heap for the rest of the year get to live like Kings. Privates question Generals, the people get a say in running things and there is great merriment and gift giving.
It is dreadfully rude to carry a fishknife whilst talking to a Merman or Mermaid, as they think of them as we would think of thumbscrews or other torture devices.
You've probebly heard of the real Thomas Hopkins, Witchfinder-General, who hunted down and hanged suspected "witches". What if there was a world/realm where magic was normal, and it was the non-witches and non-wizards who were hunted down and hanged as inferior beings?
The court wizards of Angolterre have been working for several generations to protect the dynasty. They see to it that the new monarch's names acronymically refer to a rune of protection. Once completed, the rune will make the dynasty almost invulnerable in battle, wise in counsel, etc. Unfortunately the next name, the only one that starts with the right letter, happens to have belonged to the worst monarch in living memory. Not much chance of getting the current ruler to name his child that, or for the people to put up with it if he did! What's a court wizard to do? The magic requires that the plot be kept secret of course...