Knights Templar

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The Knights Templar are a military branch of the Church of Light, originating in the Kingdom of Ivial. Their primary aims are to defend the oppressed, protect the innocent, and combat evil forces to prevent them from preying on others. Due to their ability to wield thaumaturgy, Templar are often called on to fight against the nethrim.

As is standard practice within the Church of Light, the Knights Templar honor the patron deity Serafina the Torchbearer and may call on her and her Aengels for assistance or guidance, though they do not worship her.

History

The Knights Templar were formed during the rebellion of Rhun in Ivial - several rebels had discovered a group of heavily wounded soldiers taking sanctuary in a temple and were preparing to enter and slay them - their blood would be used to empower sorcerous rites and secure the temple as a rebel stronghold. Several monks stood in the doorway, refusing to allow the rebels to harm the wounded within, and were slain.

Seeing her companions die to protect those in their care, the monk Nicola was filled with wrath at the injustice and helplessness of the situation. Chanting a rebuke against the attackers, she took up a sword from one of the wounded soldiers within the temple and stood against the attackers. Inspired by her chant and actions, the remaining three monks took up weapons themselves and joined Nicola in fighting and preventing the rebels from entering the temple.

Having spilled blood and felt it on their own hands, the four monks were distraught, but stalwartly defended the temple until the fighting in the area ceased. When they then turned their attention to healing the wounded, they found their inner light wavering and feeble, incapable of treating any but the shallowest wounds.

For many weeks Nicola and the other guardians of the temple prayed and meditated on what they had done. They were all conflicted - having seen their fellow monks be so easily and carelessly cut down, they desired to be able to fight in the defense of those they cared for. They decided to style themselves the Guardians of the Temple (later Knights Templar, once the King acknowledged and honored their actions and bestowed upon them all the title of Knight) and swore to find a balance that would allow both compassion and the ability to fight to protect those in physical peril. Their initial self-assigned mission was to protect travelers and refugees along the roads during the time of rebellion and chaos.

Though it took many years, a balance and discipline was finally discovered, and the Inner Light of the four Knights Templar once again shone brightly, though in a slightly different way - while they knew that it was good to dedicate one's life to taking care of those who had been hurt or otherwise afflicted in some way, the dangerous times also called on those who would fight to prevent such things from happening, in the defense of the innocent, the weak, and the oppressed.

Membership

Joining and maintaining membership in the Knights Templar is not easy, and certainly not for everyone. Although individuals are free to express their interest and desire to join, the Templar do not accept applications, nor do they initiate new members lightly - an individual must be well-proven in mind, spirit, and body. This can take a very long time, requiring both patience and unwavering dedication. Intersted parties should know that mere desire and patience is not enough. Initiates must be not only capable warriors, but individuals of upstanding moral character with a sincere desire to dedicate their lives to the protection and benefit of their fellow man. Those who seek personal glory, power, or acclaim should look elsewhere.

In addition to abiding by the Edict of St. Vito, the Knights Templar must recite and swear to abide by the Templar's Code:

  • A Templar is compassionate.
  • In his modesty he shuns glory.
  • His arm upholds the weak.
  • His blade defends the helpless.
  • His wrath undoes evil.
  • His mouth speaks only truth.
  • His word is unbreakable.
  • His integrity never falters.
  • His temperance is unshakable.
  • His virtue never wavers.
  • His valour sustains him through peril.

Templar are encouraged to reflect, meditate, and pray often. They should carefully consider all their actions and the consequences thereof. (Make frequent use of the think command, so the staff knows what your character is thinking and feeling!)

Note: Consideration for initiation is neither quick nor guaranteed! Interested individuals will have to do a lot to try and prove they are worthy first, and it is up to them to be proactive in achieving this - there is no specific set of instructions or trials to prove one's worth. Go about playing your character the way you want them to be, despite not being a Templar, and it's possible you may be considered and approached at some point. If you don't find it worth playing your character if you can't be a Knight Templar, you should probably consider something else.

Overall Pros

  • Particularly effective in combat against nethrim by wielding thaumaturgy
  • Many powerful defensive abilities and resistances make them difficult to defeat in combat
  • Minor thuamaturgic healing capabilities (up to moderate wounds with certain abilities active)
  • Peerless at guarding allies
  • Access to beneficial Chants which can affect and inspire the entire party

Overall Cons

  • Exclusive guild - takes much time and effort to be considered for initiation
  • Dedication required - To maintain a Templar character requires a certain amount of activity and makes it difficult to maintain alternate characters
  • Focus on combat leaves few non-combat utility abilities
  • Light-based attacks are fairly weak when used on non-nethrim or against rigid armors
  • Penalties for failing to adhere to strict code and maintain upstanding moral character
  • Required to weigh and balance difficult decisions to which there are often no clear answers (When is physical violence acceptable? When is it acceptable to kill rather than subdue?)
  • Should one's Inner Light waver for some reason, then time, effort, and reflection are required to recover
  • Inner Light may at times be ambiguous and require time and effort to understand - it is not merely tied to simple interpretations of "good" and "evil"

Abilities

Guild Services

  • Training is purchased from most Templar NPCs by spending recognition points rather than riln.

Shadgard:

  • Living Cells - A small living cell with limited permanent storage, including a table, a trunk, and an arms rack. Note that items cannot be safely left on the ground.
  • Mess Hall - Various food and drinks. Shared with Monks.
  • Supply - Various general supplies, including a Thaumaturgy-training book of scripture. Shared with Monks.
  • Armory - Various weapons, shields, and armor available for purchase. NPC weapon and armor repairs are finished more quickly here than at other shops.
  • Free use of town stables.

Valeria:

  • This used to be an Outpost of the Church, but is currently abandoned.