Anyone who has studied Slothjemia, even superficially, knows that it is the cradle of two very notorious groups of assassins; jors and shadow elves. But in recent years it is becoming even better known as a haven for “holy warriors”, the charismatic and noble paladins that in lands north of Slothjemia have been keeping evil at bay for centuries. Of course, in Slothjemia, things always have a twist.
There are three Houses to which every Slothjemian paladin must belong. Formulated much like the organizations they were created to assist. The Church itself set up the Crusaders of Fenbattle (C.o.F.) as a way to safeguard places of worship in areas known for attacks by foreign enemies or raiding brigands. While not employed often for such duties, they also assist clerical crusades against the remnants of the Diosian Lodge and help numerous “Freedom Raiders” in their forays against slave-owners in neighboring countries. The chaplains in the military created the Von Schneid Cavaliers (v.S.C.) to organize and encourage the paladins in the army and navy, as well as provide support for the chaplains themselves. The only House that was formed simply to provide paladins with an organization designed solely for adventuring and the advancement of positive religious ideals are the Bearers of the Gauntlet (B.o.G.), headed by the Herzgraf. He faced an impossible decision in whether or not to join one of the other two Houses, and fearing that such a choice would cause him to be showing favor towards either the Church or the military, he started a third House. They are not confined to any particular field of professional endeavor, and this effectively limits their political influence, but they don’t seem to be any worse for it.
Only humans can become true paladins, but most anyone can serve in any of the three houses as a warrior, cleric, multi-classed warrior/cleric, or even some other class of character. Such individuals might have ranks other than “paladin”, but they are treated as full-fledged members of the House to which they belong regardless. Such is the case with two of the Empress’ sons, who are paladins in the Bearers of the Gauntlet, but not true paladins because of their mixed racial lineage.
On the other side of the ledger, the assassins continue racking up bonuses to their backstab ability and multiple shot damage with a shortbow. They might not have fancy armor, but they manage to get the job done in their own way.