The Barley Knights

While their official name is “The Free Wardens,” this semi-formal order of warriors based in Cramond are commonly known as the Barley Knights. They hold a commission from the crown to patrol the roads and countryside of Cramond. They protect travelers and commoners from the predations of bandits and the like. They hold no courtly rank, and by law must defer to the word of the nobility, but the common folk will often turn to a member of the order for justice or aid before they might ask their lord. As a matter of respect, many peasants may append a “Sir” to the warrior’s name, even though they are not an actual knight.

To become a member of the order, the warrior must be vouched for by a member, prove themselves in a trial of arms (usually only with wooden swords or to first blood), keep vigil in a temple of their god (usually Dobrus or Valtor), and then take their oaths before an officer of the order and at least two witnesses. In return, he receives a brass badge with the order’s symbol, a standing warrant to arrest or slay those who break the law on the queen’s roads, and the right to ask for succor at any home or establishment that displays the barley sign. It is customary for the “knight” to compensate his host if he is able, or to make restitution at his earliest opportunity.

The Barley Knights

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