Saturday, 19 June 2021

Romance of the Perilous Land: The Night Ward

 Today we're taking a trip to the City of Lions, the splendorous capital of Lyonesse. The rule of King Meliodas divides the populace, with his hard line opposition to any form of magic use. While The Burning Chapter seeks to undermine the king's rule with the use of violent magic, an equally as sinister organisation haunts the city streets: The Night Ward. 

Cloaked in black and obscured with obsidian masks resembling the faces of lions, The Night Ward is a small vigilante group whose aim is to root out and destroy magic users in Lyonesse. No matter if you're a spell casting terrorist or a homely healer, anyone who taps into the Wyrd is fair game for the Ward. Frequently city folk will awaken to a body swinging from a rope, brutally beaten by the Ward's maces. 

Officially, Meliodas denounces the actions of what he calls 'common thugs' but privately he appreciates their work and fails to crack down on their activity. 

And perhaps little would change if he were to discover that the leader of the Ward is none other than Lady de Vance, noble mistress of the High Houses of Lyonesse whose family has ever been a supporter of the crown. While her public demeanor is that of a haughty, stuffy aristocrat with only her own interests in mind, in reality she is cunning, devious and well trained. Meliodas wouldn't have to look far to find out exactly how she has become a dab hand with the mace as Sir Rains, one of his most respected courtly knights has been training her for years and is a member of the Night Ward himself. 

In fact, most members of the group are of noble bloodline and loyal to Meliodas. With power and resources comes the ability to buy their way out of tight spots with the guard and access to the castle's own armoury. 

With The Burning Chapter raising the stakes in the City of Lions, the Night Ward become even more cunning and more brutal. Their shadow war has spilled into the streets, taking collateral damage and people are beginning to ask Meliodas to step in.