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October 26, 2009, 10:18 am

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Order of the Lost

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All knights, whatever order they join, swear to obey the Order’s rules, and most manage to do so, but for those few who fail and are forced out in disgrace, there is only one Order that is prepared to accept these failures and renegades, the Order of the Lost.

The Order of the Lost was founded by two knights, each of which had been thrown out of their respective Orders in disgrace for comparatively minor breaches of the rules. One was thrown out of his Jovian monastery after he was caught kissing a woman; the other was expelled from The Knights of The Lady for hitting a woman.

After meeting in a tavern and having a long and rather misogynist chat about women who had laid them low, they decided to found a new Order for knights like them. Knowing that there was no way that they would be allowed to set up a chapter where they were, they travelled to a mountain range claimed by few and ruled by none, and purchased a disused, ruined castle, that had been burnt out in an old war centuries ago.

 

Then they set about gaining new members for their Order, at first in secret. They carried out a prison break and set two traitors to the Valermorian Crown free, who joined them. They then decided to take the bold step of throwing their would-be Order not just to those who were nobles, but to almost all classes, prepared they were fit enough to fight, and willing to go through a prospecting period to prove they were dedicated enough. Sooner or later, of course, the other Orders got to hear about them, and the one who ruled the area, The Order of the Knights of Rightous Victory decided to exterminate them before they could prove a thread and sent their Blackstable Chapter after them.

 

Unknown to the chapter, however, the Order of the Lost was bigger then they thought, and tricked them, leading them into the forests where their close formation was broken up. As they rode over what seemed to be just a thick area of pine needles, they were ignited below them, burning the horses, which panicked, scattered and threw their riders. At once the lightly armed members of the Order of the Lost swarmed their fallen enemies, pushing daggers through the eyeholes in their helmets to despatch them and taking their armour and weapons for themselves.

 

When the other chapters heard of the demise of the Blackstable Chapter, they sent hundreds of knights from no less then six other chapters after them, determined to besiege their castle and bring a bloody end to this impudent new Order. However, when they travelled along the only road through the area, they found rocks rolled down in front of them and behind, cutting off their advance and retreat. Looking above them, they saw their foes with rocks and hot oil at the ready. Blocked in two directions, with a steep unclimbable rocky wall too long for their scaling ladders on the third side and a sheer drop on the other, without room to aim the trebuchets that they had brought with them, they were given an ultimatum-surrender or die.

 

They surrendered. Baskets were lowered down the cliff wall and they were made to place their weapons, shields and armour inside, before being freed from the trap and being forced to return unarmed and naked the way they came.

 

Since then, protected by their mountains and the fact that most of the other Orders dislike each other so much that they can’t bring themselves to unite against them, they have grown to more then a thousand strong, their symbol being a plain black flag and black shields. When someone comes to join them, they do not ask why he wishes to join. Fugitives from justice, rebellious peasants from other fiefs, traitors, and born knights who have been expelled from their old Orders have all come to join them.

Provided he is strong enough to fight, and passes a prospecting stage that can last years, he can join regardless of if he is a noble or a peasant.

 

Their rules number only seven.

 

I-In warfare, anything goes.

 

Amongst other things, they have poisoned the water supply of another Order, thus laying low it’s members with disease, hired assassins, laid many ambushes, and pretended that they are a lot more dangerous then they really are.

 

II-In battle, obey orders, but outside it, everyone gets their say but not necessarily their way.

 

When not in battle, they are a democracy, unlike most Orders in which the individual members have little or no say in what he does.

 

III-When one of our members is in trouble, regardless of who started it, we all pile in on his side.

 

They mean that, mess with one member and you mess with the whole Order.

 

IV-Stick with the territory we have for now, as trying to grab too much means that you risk all.

 

Whilst many Orders are at war with each other over territory, the Order of the Lost hangs onto their core region without trying to grab more lands. Knowing this, the other Orders tolerate them as a buffer zone.

 

V-Ask another member no more then they are willing to freely reveal to you.

 

The Order does not want to know about the background of it’s members or what they did in the past.

 

VI-Do not foul your own stable.

 

Do not fight with, steal from, betray or lie to another member. Those who break this rule have a right to a trial, but if convicted the penalty is death. In peace the jury is of twelve, in war, three are enough.

VII-Blood Out

Noone is forced to join the Order, and prospects can choose to stand down, but once somebody becomes a full member, they will be killed if they try to leave.

 

 



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Comments ( 3 )
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Voted Erfunden
October 21, 2009, 18:46
0xp
An entertaining idea. It does away, in an almost comical fashion, with all the pretences of chivalry and honour that exist in a typical knightly order. Your Order of the Lost is a glorified gang.

I think the biggest issue an order like this would have is maintaining order within themselves. Clearly, if you are accepting the reject from normal society (and most, through not all, will have been rejected for a very good reason) you're going to have issues maintaining control. If, say, someone who was thrown out of their own order for trying to kill the king and steal his crown joins the order, it might be difficult to stop him from doing the same thing again. especially if he brought a large enough number of under soldiers with him.

I'd like to hear details about the trials necessary to prove dedication before joining. They would certainly have to be very rigorous to make sure the order isn't being filled with spies from the other orders. Also, does the joining process start everyone at the bottom? If a very high-ranked knight tries to join does he immediately start with an equal rank in the order? If a peasant tries to join, claiming that he was high ranking, is there a way of finding him out?

Also, a fortress in an impenetrable mountain region may offer alot of protection but it probably doesn't offer much arable land. While they might not actively try to control more land, but they'd certainly have to raid the surrounding areas for more supplies.
Voted axlerowes
October 22, 2009, 20:35
0xp
Erf brings up some good points, and I think the piece could be tightened up a bit.

Paragraphs 4,5,6 are unnecessary, I know that they give examples of the type of battle tactics the Order of the Lost but they are full all the wrong details and they lack any dramatic form or colorful imagery. (A bunch of Knights walking out naked is kind of funny, but without large context it falls flat).

I like this idea a lot thanks, but as you have it now it is little more than a pub idea.
Things I think that would make this a useful post, I don't think all are necessary but you could develop along one these routes

A) A solid look at the logistics of this order, how do they eat, what are their numbers, whats the order of battle, who is in charge and what are they good at-GMs may want to adapt many things are their own but if you can do the grunt work of logistics, I think most GMs find that helpful and you can tell a lot about people by looking at their spending habits.

B) Day to day life in the order

C) What would my first day in the order be like?

D) Subplots, how do tough fighting peasants mix with Usurped Kings, fallen Paladins and Ronin?

E) Chrome details, what does the castle look like, what do these 1000 men look like crossing a battle field, other than Black shields in Mountain passes we go nothing.
Cheka Man
October 26, 2009, 10:18
0xp
Update: In work.

Freetext



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