Organizations (Cora Supplement)
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|World of Cora
The Role of Organizations
Organized groups make up most of the power in Cora. If someone is powerful, or wealthy, or has a tradeskill that's useful, then they are more than likely associated with a group or two in their local area. Whether it's a church or a guild, or maybe they are a part of both. The bulk of Cora falls into a follower of one of those two. Orders have a tendency to recruit those with top notch skills, and assets. Becoming a member in any of the orders in cora is viewed as an honor and a very well honored title.
"The Imperial Church is the Empire" is a well known saying and it is because the two are inseparable. The Emperor is the head of the Imperial Church, and ever since it's creation the imperial church has been the main body of government throughout the empire. It is what holds the people together. The religious focus of the church teaches that all lives are made to live for the Emperor, thus "You live and you die all for the Emperor" is a commonly accepted belief. This has caused the imperial church to dissuade it's followers from worshiping any gods, though everyone in the empire is taught of their existence. Instead the church promotes the sharing of ideas and technology as a way to bring people together under the name of the emperor. The Imperial Church is made of four distinct and separate sects; blades, hammers, clerics, and thinkers. The blades are the military force of the empire, which contains the Order of the Horn and any other active and reserve forces. Often a citizen will enter the blades at a young age to learn the ways of military and then be put into reserve. Those in reserve often pursue jobs with the Merch & Merc guild, whether a mercenary or a smith, both are fairly common. The hammers are the workforce of the Imperial church and make up the largest portion of it. The hammers include any working class citizen of the empire, from jester to miner. The clerics are those directly affiliated with running the church; they are advisors, tax collectors, couriers, or other people that help make the church run. Thinkers are the researchers of the empire. They are usually the most well trained and knowledgeable people in the realm. The thinkers also contain a high number of people who can attune to and use cora stones. All citizens of the empire are required to join one of the sects of the imperial church, though there are a few who choose not to register, or who forge their papers because of the law. Without the proper papers it is hard to travel from city to city, and you can only get papers if you are a registered citizen.
Order of the Horn
The Order of the Horn is the elite military force in the realm, they account for a small percentage of the military though. Only those who meet their qualifications may join, and the restrictions are very high, making the Order of the Horn an elite force most would not want be on the bad side of. Even though there may only be two or three individuals in a small town that represent the order, they are usually much more well trained than any criminal would hope to outsmart, with the added benefit of being able to call in help from the larger cities if a situation gets out of hand. The Order of the Horn is open to people of upstanding citizenship in the empire, who have nearly any background. If you are the best at what you do, then the Order might be for you. The order's headquarters are located in the capital of the empire, Prima Gratia.
The Merch & Merc
The Merch and Merc Guild is the primary guild that deals with merchants and mercenaries in the empire. While the Order of the Hand does a great job of policing the towns and cities from unwelcome guests, there are few patrols beyond the walls of the cities, making the countryside a bandits heaven. In a move to band together the merchants and mercenaries created a regulated guild to help protect merchants and make it easy to pair them with protection. The guild has expanded far beyond it's original goals though, and now if you even want to trade in a city, or town you must first register with the Merch and Merc Guild, or face imprisonment by the empire. The headquarters for the Merch & Merc are in Prima Gratia, the capital of the empire. The Merch & Merc banner is a black gauntlet holding a small coin sack, gripped in a fist.
More a secret society than a guild, the Silence is considered the enemy of the Merch and Merc. It is a guild focused on raiding, thieving, stealing, and circumventing the laws of the empire, and those established by the Merch & Merc guild. Many who seek to join the Silence have been oppressed by the Merch & Merc in the past, or have decided that they don't want to follow the ways of an upstanding citizen. The Silence operates primarily outside of the cities where the Order of the Hand has less men, and less eyes to see their movements. Interestingly, the Silence has seen more Shadowkin recruits than any other race, and sees very few Dakin. The Silence has no known headquarters, and no known leader, though there are always rumors about a hidden cave, or hidden wooden village that the Silence works out of. The Silence also deals in forged papers. Sometimes a member of the guild will get in trouble with the empire, and when this does happen it's always good to have a set of forged papers around.
The Water Lords
Though not quite so illustrious as the Order of the Horn, the Water Lords boast the longest standing military tradition of and private military in the world of Cora. A tradition that has lasted more than six hundred years strong, and has never changed as to it's effectiveness. Founded by Bandit King Alugal Damu I after discovering a deep rooted system of water in the desert of Haldor. Holding the vast monopoly of water in such an inhospitable place gave them a dominating monopoly on trade in the region. The citadel City of A variant for the arabic word Oasis. Coptyc was founded as a headquarters to the private military. And though many uprisings have ensued against the corrupt city, all have been quelled
Even though it is a mercenary Enclave, the Water Lords are one of the few true standing armies in the whole of Cora. And though their tactics are infamous they have been esteemed legendary strategist and ruthless opponents adopting the notion that if your enemy has no populace they lack the funding and support to stand up in an engagement. Men and women hailing from the Water Lords are warily viewed as they are known to be both calculating and brutal.