Black star mercenary guild
There is no faction in all of Argost that is more loved, more reviled, more renowned, less appreciated, or more controversial than the Black Star Guild. If you ask the opinions of people regarding Black Star you will get a different opinion from each one. Even other factions have very mixed views about Black Star within their membership.
The Black Star Guild has no central organization and is specifically prohibited from forming one by the guild’s founding charter. Relationships between the guilds in individual cities are allowed. Relationships and alliances between members of different chapters of the guild are also allowed. Some chapters are quite friendly with each other and some chapters are outright hostile towards each other. However, most fall somewhere in the middle.
Black Star members have a great variety of talents and interests. Former soldiers often join the guild when they leave the army, putting their skills to use for much, much higher pay! Scouts, wizards, rogues, warriors, and even a few priests join the guild for adventure, riches, influence, prestige, and a multitude of other reasons.
Pledges to the guild must prove their competency, loyalty, and the ability to fit in with the guild chapter that they are joining. Some chapters are renowned for being upstanding and fiercely devoted to their cities and to good causes. Other chapters have terrible reputations for greed, corruption, and rumors of ill deeds and ill gotten gains.
Once someone is accepted into Black Star, they attain the rank of apprentice. Most members of Black Star are apprentices and never rise above that rank. Journeyman is the rank above that where some guild secrets are shared, a great degree of the profits are earned, and missions with greater chance for fame, fortune, and danger are offered. Very few Black Star members rise to the rank of Master and those that do inspire awe and dread in those that cross their paths. Usually there is only one Master per guild chapter but the largest guilds have up to four or five.
Players may start as apprentice members of Black Star. We do not encourage people to start as pledges but if you’d really like to, we will work with you to attempt to make that work within the setting.
The Black Star Mercenary Guild is unique as a guild organization within Argost in that they are allowed to police themselves and their members. If there is an issue that can not be resolved, it is taken to the King or a representative of His Majesty to resolve. This sometimes creates a lot of strife with the Knights of Argost who would normally be able to oversee matters of justice over common folk in a guild. This autonomy, along with many other benefits afforded to Black Star, are born of the charter that founded the guild early in Argost’s history. The mysterious charter is rumored to be hundreds and hundreds of pages and only allowed to be viewed by Masters of the guild and members of the Royal Family.
Common attitudes and values within Black Star:
· To assure the best outcomes, you must use your guile and cunning to accumulate as much influence, alliances, knowledge, and forces for our guild.
· We work best when left to our own devices. We must encourage other factions to leave us be. You are responsible for not drawing unwanted attention to yourself or your guild. If the Keswicks have questions of us, we will answer them completely and readily but all others should be encouraged to stick their noses elsewhere.
· Our charter strictly forbids an overarching leadership between individual guild chapters. It is in Argost’s best interest, and our own, to assure that this is never violated. However, we should build strong ties between like minded members and chapters as much as allowed within the confines of our charter.
· Our charter is unique within Argost and it gives you and us a great degree of latitude. We use this freedom to serve Argost well. We must also look to our own interests but assure that you nor any guild member endangers our character and the freedom it gives.
Black Star members dress in a wide variety of clothing from simple and functional to opulent. They favor dark colors but they have no colors that they wear as an organization. Their symbol is an eight pointed black star that is often displayed on a white or light colored field. Belt flags are a common way to display their membership but shield covers, tabards, jewelry, and other ways are not unusual. In the case of jewelry, sometimes a silver or gold star is commonly used.
All Black Star Mercenaries that are sent to the expedition lands will give up their memberships in their previous chapters to join the newly established guild in Gerald’s Lance. However, you may choose to be a new member or have come from a chapter of your own creation or one of the chapters outlined in the geography section.
Niko the Tactician is the patron of the Black Star Mercenary guild. Most priests within the guild follow Niko, whose values are largely reflected in the guild and how it functions. However, there are certainly priests of the other Gods within the guild.
For a character to be a member of the Black Star Mercenary Guild they must have purchased the Black Star secondary header.