Court of Battle (Five Factions Supplement)
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This guild is a medley of fighters, barbarians, monks, paladins, and whathaveyou. This is the sister guild to the Sages of the Court and they are similar in many ways. Joining is easy enough, since the request can be made of any member and invitations are given between friends freely. No obligation is required and the benefits are exceptional, especially the social benefit of putting members in contact with many other fighters of their own caliber in their town.
While no commitment to the guild is necessary, requests for taking up responsibilties and defending the guild are often made. Many opt to take a larger role in the guild and thus begin to move through the ranks of the guild.
On the personal level, the large number of members makes generalizing impossible. Higher ranks begin to see the utility of all walks of life in battle, but this does not mean they become more open-minded.
On inter-guild relations, they treat other guild with respect and caution, losing their distance only after years of safe, beneficial co-operation. The Sages of the Court work closely with the Court of Battle, providing them magical assistance in various ways in return for the service the more physically strong member of the Court can provide.
The Court of Battle used to be known as the Kingdom of War, led by a single powerful fighter who could be challenged to a duel at any time. The instability of this system became evident when the King was challenged to five duels in a single day during a political battle with a rival guild.
The lower ranking members saw the need to form a parliament within the guild, whose members were elected by the guild and through which all challenges to the monarch of the guild would have to be passed. This caused problems, as the King modified elections in his favor and became too powerful.
The monarch of the guild was deposed, placing the parliament into power. The parliament quickly evolved into the Court and now maintains power and stability within the guild.
There are few rules for brawlers, just that any serious injury to a fellow member or unwarranted violence at anytime may result in punishment. For Soldiers, restrictions are plentiful and training is rigorous, bringing the average Soldier up to or well surpassing the level of many government militaries.
Above soldiers, rule become slightly more lenient and power begins to accumulate for Knights and higher. Upon reaching the rank of Vassal, many are content to wait for their turn as a member of the court, but some actively seek it, challenging Second Courtiers weekly. While there are actually fewer rules and more guidelines for First Courtiers, they generally follow a strict code imposed by their fellows.
The goals of this guild is to create an environment for fighters to meet their fellows, allow members to interact with the much-needed spellcasters of other guilds, and improve the lives of people in the towns it has chapters in.
They work to ensure a balance of power with other guilds of combatants, gauranteeing diversity rather than personal power.
 Headquarters and Locations
Headquarters are easily found, many of them because they are located on the top floors of raucous taverns and bars. They hang their guild emblem in the window of their establishment for all to see.
|First Courtier||1st||There are ten of these. They participate in the Court.||As the higher members of the court, they are the leaders of any factions of the court, since they are elected by the Second Courtiers. They vote on matters and voice their opinion. Some are assigned special duties and responsibilities, like Keeper of the Treasury and Order of the Court.|
|Second Courtier||2nd||As the lower members of the court, they elect and support First Courtiers. There can be as many as 30 to 50 of these, depending on the needs of the court.||They voice their opinion on and make suggestions for the business of the court. They also assist the First Courtier they support with any courtly duties he may have.|
|Vassal||3rd||Next-in-lines for the rank of Second Courtier, there are usually one or two hundred of these.||Vassals are usually the subcommanders in any military endeavor the guild might undertake, answering to the First and Second Courtiers. They have several knights that serve under them.|
|Knight||4th||Direct underlings of the Vassals, each Vassal has three to ten knights in his service.||They follow their Vassals, whether it be into battle or into court. They have an entourage of Pages, one of who they promote to personally train as their Squire.|
|Squire||5th||While some choose not to have one, almost every Knight has one Squire training under him.||With more rigorous training than Pages, these are the Knight's favorite and their heirs within the guild, inheriting the Knight's rank should the Knight advance in rank.|
|Page||6th||Pages are the selected of the soldiers that may train under the Knights and may be selected by them as their Squire. Pages have most of the duties of a Soldier, but with a few more benefits and some more specific training from the Knight they follow.||Pages receive a moderate stipend, receive training, and perform task such as guarding gates, organizing small platoons for exploration of a newly discovered location, and generally all the duties they enjoyed as a Soldier.|
|Soldier||7th||This is the second most populous rank, with over a quarter of the guild's many members. From this rank, many members put more effort into moving upward through the guild.||Soldiers are the Brawlers who have decided to take a more active role in the future of the guild, devoting themselves to its benefit. At this rank they receive good training and a slightly better stipend. They may be required by the guild to defend their honor when the guild comes into conflict.|
|Brawler||8th||This is the most basic rank of the court, with thousands of members never moving upward in the rankings. This rank consists of more than fifty percent of the guild's members.||Benefits for members of this rank are mostly social, as the rank brings together so many fighters from many walks of life to improve their skills. Brawlers can request training from their fellows or higher ranks. Brawler receive a very meager stipend.|
 Rank Descriptions
First Courtiers: First Courtiers are the movers and shakers in the guild, the only members authorized to vote on Court business and the organizers of most events. They are elected by their peers from the Second Courtiers. There are only ever ten First Courtiers. Four of them have a special title, and therefore position and duty, on top of being a First Courtier. These titles are Order of the Court, Keeper of Business, Ceremonial Master, and Speaker of the Guild.
Order of the Court: The primary purpose of this First Courtier is to keep the Court running smoothly during a meeting and ensure the other titled courtiers collaborate on and complete their duties.
Keeper of Business: Scribe and Treasurer of the Court, keeping documents of meetings, advancements of rank in the guild, and changes in allies and enemies of the guild.
Ceremonial Master: This courtier oversees voting, ran advancement, special rites, and the services obtained from mage guilds, though he does not obtain the mage guild's assistance himself.
Speaker of the Guild: Liaison to other organizations, including rival guilds, mages' guilds, factions, and government, the work of the person holding this title includes acquiring and lending assistance for and from his guild. He represents the entire guild for meetings with any officials.
First Courtiers oversee the guild and its business and receive a weekly stipend of fifteen gold.
Second Courtiers: As the lower members of the court, they elect the ten First Courtiers from among their ranks. They support their elected Courtier and assist him in their duties, including any duties from that courtier's title.
Second Courtiers vote into position and support a First Courtier and receive a weekly stipend of ten gold.
Vassals take several Knights into their service, training them and directing them.
Vassals may or may not choose to support and train under a courtier, though they may challenge a Second Courtier to take his play in the court. Vassals receive a weekly stipend of five gold.
Knights are in the service of a Vassal and receive a weekly stipend of one gp.
Squires: The selected trainees of a Knight, they are well on there way to becoming a powerful fighter and a great tactician. They follow their Knight and set an example for the Pages and Soldiers below them.
Squires often act as scouts and messengers in dangerous or hostile territory.
Squires receive powerful and favored training from their Knight and a weekly stipend of five sp.
Pages: Pages are the Soldiers that have accepted the offer of a Knight to train under him. They quickly gain strength and expertise in combat, learning the ways of the guild and the powerful techniques handed down within it.
Pages receive specialized training and a weekly stipend of on sp.
Soldiers: Soldiers are Brawlers who have chosen to take a more active role within the guild and potentially move upward through the ranks. They may advance to become a Page by being chosen to serve and train under a Knight.
They serve as the rank and file, the messengers in safe areas, and they may prove capable and powerful fighters to the untrained.
Soldiers receive training and a stipend every other week of one sp.
Brawlers: The lowest rank and those not necessarily committed to its continuation and expansion, though they may seek to preserve the benefits they gain from being a part of it.
Brawlers are invited to Court meetings and receive a monthly stipend of one sp.
 Rank Interactions
Brawlers may sometimes scoff at those who decide to become a Soldier, but this can be quelled easily enough. Within the guild, nothing but respect is tolerated, especially for your superiors. Squires and Pages are often treated with a dash of respect by Soldiers, and [[#Knights|Knights are revered as powerful fighters. Vassals, Second Courtiers, and First Courtiers are almost to feared and/or respected by their inferiors to be spoken to, sometimes even looked at, when it chooses to Soldiers.
 Rank Advancement
Brawlers become Soldiers by expressing a desire to take their role in the guild into their own hands and accepting the offer of better training. Soldiersmay be selected as the Page and then Squire of a Knight.
Vassals are replaced by their strongest Knight, as determined by a series of duels, when they defeat a Second Courtier in a one-on-one duel. First Courtiers are elected from the Second Courtiers by the Second Courtiers.
The ten First Courtiers , the most powerful members of the guild, are the most notable. They are Marcus Garson, Lester Norton, Yunt, Jorko Mellis, M'Nohe Firehand, Torish Blaque, Jane Horus, Unstra B'Nork, Hector the Black, and Red Donovan.
A court member may take levels in the Court Duelist prestige class by training under a higher ranking member of the guild. Brawlers usually do not have levels in this, but the upper ranks usually do. Typical levels in this class fro each rank follow: Soldier, 1 level; Page, 2 levels; Squire, 4 levels; Knight, 5 levels; Vassal, 7 levels; Second Courtier, 8 levels; First Courtier, 10 levels.
Brawlers often do not take advantage of the training facilities available to them through the guild, prefering the fighting grounds of a Tavern bar fight or the like to hone their skills. Those who take a more active role in the guild often make more use of those facilities and are capable of buying armor and weaponry emblazoned with the guild emblem. Seom of this can be specially crafted and/or magically enchanted by their sister guild, Sages of the Court.
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