The Storm of Insurrection
A Survey of Organizations
Principal Organizations of the Storm of Insurrection
After King Manu failed to produce a male heir, he compelled his ministers to alter the laws of succession so that his daughter could become the heir. This incensed anyone with enough dignity not to want to be ruled by a woman. Now Queen Emilie must deal with the fallout of her father’s death.
Styling themselves the purple in mockery of the throne, this organization recruits malcontents and ‘patriots’ intent on freeing the land from the rule of despotism. Some say they are responsible for the death of King Manu.
If you’ve seen one, you’ve seen them all. Each one has a legacy and a rationalization for power. The question is, which ones will be mad enough to leverage claim against the Heklars. On the other side, who will be so undignified as to flatter the obviously corrupt nuisance of a monarchy?
The Realm’s Guard
In a feudal kingdom, it is normal for forces to become decentralized, but in the last 3 decades, the Heklar dynasty built up a massive guard force, citing a growing need for stability. Now that they wield a fighting force that almost humbles the nobility, they can dictate the terms of politics much better than before, but in the end, who would such a force really fight for? Are they loyal to the heads of state or their commanding generals?
Synod of Divines
Centuries ago, ordinary men became crusaders and tamed the excesses of magic and wizardry, but true peace was only found when the synod of the divines rose to organize boundaries for the excesses of the common man’s heart. The Synod sanctions the rule of the king as divinely necessary, but when the monarch is the source of corruption, a whole new set of meditations springs up in the Synod.
The Age of Magic was a glorious age, but, clearly, mortal men were not meant to wield power that the human heart cannot fathom. In these days, however, the servants of arcane magic are more in demand than ever, with scheming and pettiness at an all-time high. Magic was meant for more than simply empowering such vicious men with no concept of its beauty. Some in the Mage’s Council think it is time to loosen some of the boundaries on Magic in the Realm. Others, hardly concerned with the world around, are content in an Ivory Tower.
A legacy of the war to tame the Mages, loosely connected to the Synod of the Divines, this organization has turned into a band of monster-hunters. When the King and the Realm’s Guard lack the motivation to hunt out and suppress bands of orcs, goblins, and undead, the Crusade knows its place—keeping such creatures far from human settlements. Men see their constant vigilance and gritty valor in a strangely angelic light, but nobody really knows what specific crimes the creatures they slay committed. It is irrelevant, for the crusade operates by its own set of rules.
Far from concerned with the glory of power, nobles and merchants invested in the Mercantile Division operate with their own principle: securing financial growth. They have begun to spring their own professional armies and resources to life, to protect their trade from thieves and vagabonds where the crown does not. They have no intention of stemming civil conflict, which is clearly a situation pregnant with an opportunity for more privileges.
The fivefold is a dark—some even say demonic—organization committed to the destruction of the realm. Before the Jundar realm united, five kingdoms were divided and strove with one another in constant warfare. The fivefold believe this was a process of evolution that strengthened the Jundar people, but the divines said it was something else, namely the weakness of human nature and an inability to see that we could be stronger together. Whatever the fivefold originally stood for, it has always persisted throughout the centuries, and now, as much as ever, connives in secret.
The typical heresy is like a sickness the body endures for a few days and then overcomes. The Nolaron Heresy, however, seems to be an ongoing thorn in the side of the divines. Protected by nobles in the East, the Nolaron Heresy claims that everything that men worship as ‘divine’ is actually a different aspect of the same ‘God,’ whom they claim rules in all things. They call these non-god aspects “Nolarons” technically meaning something like “not-divine-essence-but-just-human-interpretation-of-divine-essence”. The Synod persecutes and cannot tolerate this “monotheism,” and ironically, the Nolaron Heresy is so all-embracing as to be perfectly tolerant of the interpretations (and even, in some situations, the religious authority) of the Synod, since they happily and with minimal scruples denude it of its genuine meaning.
Yet another faction disgusted with centralized power and systematic privilege, this group actually claims that ecclesiastical hierarchs are completely motivated by power and used spirituality to suppress free people. They claim that the Synod’s habit of retaining evil divines as worshipful entities is a disgusting abomination of self-aggrandizement. Good deities are to be worshiped, neutral ones, likewise, honored and praised, but evil deities are to be rejected. While the Ornery Rebellion exists in numerous places, it is likewise persecuted in many places and treated, not so much with contempt as with a pity that comes from dealing with one who is too young and immature to understand the realities of the world.
Elves, Dwarves, and Other Races
Within the Jundar Realm, elves, dwarves, and other races generally exist either as minorities protected by the law, or else in segregated communities given federated status under the crown (somewhat similar to tribal Indians during the early period of our nation having land under treaty). The willingness of such minority communities to accept Jundar rule is proportional to their liberty, and while elves are usually content with forests, and dwarves with hills, there may be princes among them who are able to rationalize seeking more privilege or even formal independence. This civil turmoil might be the perfect opportunity, in fact.