Campaign of the Month: June 2012
The Lion Blades of Phthya are a secret organization committed to protecting the interests of the Phthyan Empire and the emperor. They oppose the Empire’s many enemies, foreign and domestic, through a program of infiltration, assassination, and espionage. One of the major goals of the Lion Blades is keeping a rein on corruption in the empire (aside from corruption that is useful to them); another is keeping any one faction of the imperial court from becoming powerful enough to upset the status quo and topple the Imperial government. Through its shadow schools, the Lion Blades intensively train new recruits, preparing them for the high level of initiative and latitude with which they will be vested.
Goal: Serving from the Shadows
The Lion Blades see their mission as serving the Empire, but they don’t want anyone to tell them how to fulfill that mission. The easiest way to avoid criticism and oversight is to not officially exist, so the Lion Blades make secrecy and opacity a priority. At the same time, it is to their advantage if their name strikes fear and encourages compliance. Attaining the status of open secret has allowed the organization to gain the benefits of notoriety without having to deal with its consequences in terms of outside interference.
The Lion symbol which has become notoriously associated with the Lion Blades is generally stenciled onto walls, pillars, plinths, and other public places when the Blades wish to exert their enigmatic influences over a local area. The fact that the symbol has no sword in its motif is deliberate. When one sees the lion sigil, it is a warning. The blades themselves creep from within shadow and are never seen – until it is too late. When the Lion Blades wish to claim responsibility for an action, particularly an assassination, they will leave a calling card on the victim, usually a silver iron ring, or a knife bearing a lion seal.