The Chronicles of a Dead Empire
Class Background Information
Classes are defined in different ways within each culture on the Mathojan Peninsula. A Fighter in Mathojan culture can denote a soldier, while in the Wuld culture, a Fighter would be a citizen who is trained as a militia man. This is true of most of the classes in Chronicles.
As mentioned in the introduction, Mathojan Fighters usually have some military training, or at least training in a town or city guard. If the character was a soldier, then the average initial stint in the Mathojan military is about three years, with additional sign-up periods of two years. Most city and town guards are chosen for military experience, unless there is an exception, like a well-monied merchant giving a unfortunate son a job, or a non-military trained sport fighter.
Sport fighters are trained outside of the military circles and are rarely employed outside the sports circles. Sport fighters who are in demand for entertainment purposes, and the pay is usually good for successful fighters. Mathoja boasts several sport areas devoted to hand-to-hand combat, and these fights are conducted with non-lethal blunted weapons. Lethal sport is against Mathoja’s laws.
Mathojan Rangers are almost exclusively from the northern areas near The Neck, and almost all of them have a military or militia background. Rangers are settler/frontiersman types that continually hone their art. Personal background, skill and experiences determine whether or not a candidate can become a Ranger, not the willingness to sign a paper and pull a stint. Mathojan Rangers are pretty close knit group, no matter the unit.
The Wizards of Mathoja are fairly rare and usually grouped in the capitol of Lis or in Caman. The Wizards (most commonly called “Sages”) in Lis are tied with the Tower of the Sages and the Royal University. They are also called “Tower Sages” or “University Majesters”. The Wizards in Caman are usually associated with the Order of the Ivory Cup. They are also referred to as “Ivory Sages”, “Caman Scholars” or more derogatorily as “Cuppers”. Most Wizards become scholars or advisors to the royal families.
The Illusionists of Mathoja are considered more entertainers and thieves than wizards, so they tend to be looked down upon by other sages, especially by the Tower Sages. The Order of the Ivory Cup accepts illusionists into the ranks as they are beginning to achieve a form respectability in their circles. Most illusionists are forced into their stereotype by lack of opportunity, but some buck the trend.
True Clerics of Mathoja are relatively rare, most possessing “divine gifts”. With no “divine gift”, then they are lay priests. Clerics are limited to the Mathojan religions, the Drugda and The Star’s Source. Clerics in Mathojan culture are part of an elite, and most families celebrate any children having “divine gifts”, and usually sent to school in Lis. Some clerics become advisers to the noble and royal families, other move up in their religion’s hierarchy, but most stay as the foot soldiers of their respective religions.
Thieves are active in all major cities and most towns. The major cities usually host a underground of various Ludrisa that compete with each other. The Ludrisa band together to create a governing body that oversees the activities of illicit activity in a city. Most thieves in a city are part of a Ludris, with a few working independently. The independents steer well clear of the Ludrisa, and move city to city to ply their living. If caught, independents are usually killed, but in some acts of mercy, they come out alive maybe missing a hand or fingers. The better trained rogues are, the more demand and competition for their services.
The Mathojan knight is always part of the nobility, and most often, a member of the military. If the Fighters and men-at-arms provide the basis of the army and cavalry, knights are the officer corps. They take oaths of loyalty to the Khzar, and if they are part of an Order, they take additional oaths for that too. There are three knightly orders, the Khzar’s Loyal Men, Knights of the Crimson, and Knights of the Sun.
Bards are welcome in almost every Stay and Rest in the Khzardom. They sing popular songs, do tricks and generally entertain people. They also carry news from city to city, so they’re also a source of juicy gossip and hard news that lie outside the wall of city, town and village. The Songsters of the Road are a ludris that many bards are part of. Some bards are outside of the ludris, and some are considered “fallen” from their profession. This doesn’t make them any less capable, but it is harder from them to make a living. Most nobles and places of business look for the Songster’s badge.
Paladins are much like knights – they take vows their religion, and are most often part of the nobility or a gifted young priest. They’re bound to uphold the laws of the land and and of their religion. Whereas the clerics are foot soldiers, the paladins are leaders on the field of battle, or lone questers, which is gaining popularity. Paladins rarely join extracurricular orders, but it is known to happen. Unlike clerics, their ability to receive “gifts” is limited, for their lot is to win the day by the purity of steel and belief – they are less concerned about converting the masses.
In Wuld Culture, face to face fighting doesn’t hold the appeal that it does with the Mathojans or the Grumald, but there are those Wuld who make wielding a sword and shooting a bow a profession. They usually are guardsmen of cities or merchant caravans, professional swords who train local militia or bounty hunters out to catch criminal or beast. All professional Wuld fighters are able archers – bows being the weapon of choice.