Thursday, December 08, 2011


The Knights of the Heart

One of the most attractive aspects of Dagorhir is the freedom of choice. Many other games with role-playing elements require the individual to start at the bottom and level up or perform fealty to find their niche and fit in to the world of the game. In Dagorhir, by contrast, no one really cares. Think Sauron got a raw deal? Here's your green facepaint. Kurosawa close to your heart? Get yourself a katana and a dress. Watch too much Spartacus? AVE ROME, BABY. As long as it's historical or fantastic, it's all within your grasp.

Have you always wanted to be a knight?

Then you already are.

Many fighting companies integrate knightly orders into the hierarchy of their groups: to be a knight, one is required to serve as a squire and undergo training and various martial trials to prove one's worthiness. In Greyglade, however, ranks and leadership within the chapter take different paths, leaving knighthood solely within the purview of roleplaying. Our orders of knighthood, therefore, omit the requirements of an attainment and leave only the requirements of commitment. Being a Knight of the Heart is less concerned with your actions in the past and more concerned with your intentions for the future.

In that spirit, there are several voluntary limitations to which a knight must submit in order to call himself or herself a Knight of the Heart. If such a thing is of interest to you, read on...
_Ser Kneefers the White of Greyglade, Knight of the Heart

Broken Heart sigil designed by deviantArt user Dark-Fire-Wolf-123

A Knight of the Heart Shall Demonstrate:

The pursuit of the truth is the highest calling for the Knight, and he is forbidden to speak a lie, even if the truth would shame him, nor may he approach an opponent from behind on the battlefield without announcing his presence. While a stalwart warrior, the Knight also cultivates a heart that is transparent, unprejudiced, and without guile. As such, the Knight must possess armor that protects his torso, but which features a Rift – a hole or other open space which leaves his heart uncovered – to symbolize that he hides no secret shame within a deceitful heart.

True nobility on the battlefield comes not only from power, but in compassion and service as well. The second calling of the Knight is to cultivate the skills of a healer. The knight is to memorize a poem of healing, and to offer such services for any battle in which healing – whether by poems or by other means – is permitted and needed. The Knight, though given the title “Ser,” also demonstrates his charity and humility by not demanding deference in the form of such honorifics, even from his own men.

The final mark of the Knight is his courage and loyalty on the field of battle. He will require no action of his companions that he does not undertake himself, and once on the battlefield the Knight is forbidden from abandonment of his allies. Regardless of whether such allies are those to whom the Knight has given vows or those merely thrown to his side by fate, the Knight will make every effort to rescue them from danger, no matter the risk to his own life or the considerations of battle strategy.

A Knight of the Heart is likewise required to take an oath before a group of witnesses consisting of all other Knights of the same order who are present at the event. It is not required that a man or woman be a member of Greyglade or to fight with the other Knights in order to take on the mantle of a Knight of the Heart. Regardless of your other obligations or alliances, being a Knight of the Heart requires only that you have the earnest desire to apply yourself fully to the ideals and restrictions of the order, and that you make your sincerity evident to the knights who are to witness your oath. Once he has offered his oath, the Knight is permitted to wear armor with a Rift over the heart, as well as to display the sigil of the order, the Broken Heart. The oath takes the form of a series of answers, which shall be memorized in full and recited as proof of your commitment.

Ser Knight, shall I ask you of your heart?
Ask me not of my heart, for my heart is broken.
Ser Knight, shall I ask you of your heart?
Ask me not of my heart, for my heart must carry no lies and suffer no shield.
Ask me not of my heart, for my heart must bear that truth exceeds falsehood.
Ask me not of my heart, for my heart must remain always courageous, always merciful, always true.
Ask me not of my heart, for my heart is shattered and made whole again.
Ask me not of my heart, for my heart abides with he who fights beside me.
Ask me not of my heart, for my heart is no longer mine to give.
Ser Knight, shall I ask you of your heart?
Ask me not of my heart, for my heart is yours.

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