The Flower in the Sepulcher
Order of the Moss-Covered Sword
“This is not a civilized place. It can fool you, living in Treff, with its shops and markets and guilds. But once not so long ago creatures of madness and darkness ruled this swamp. They stalk it still, and want nothing more than to wipe away this sanctuary we have built. But they cannot. They will not. Not while our watch holds. Not while we remember.” —Grand Bailiff Livia Rylaieon of the Order of the Moss-Covered Sword
When the last war of the Vampire King came to its smoldering end at the Battle of the Lost City, a group of veterans came together led by a legendary figure known only as the Knight of the Green. They swore an oath that they would exterminate the taint of the evil Kingdom of the Mosquito wherever it was to be found, and to defend those decent folk of the Swamp for “as long as these here remember.”
For a time the Knights of the Green (not yet having their current name) wandered the swamp, expunging holdouts of the old kingdom and banishing aberrations where they could. But as years wore on, it became more and more obvious that some kind of fortress or base was needed. So the remnants of the band struck out north for what was then a small, lizardfolk town called Treff. There, the knights built the mighty Greenstone Keep and made pacts of amity and friendship with the Sisterhood and their temple.
One year to the day after the Keep’s founding, the Knight of the Green disappeared mysteriously in the night. No one saw him go, but he left behind one thing. A sword, his sword, thrust into the center of the Keep’s courtyard, covered in a bright green moss that none could identify. A single word was etched into the stone flags around it: “Remember”. The bailiff of the Keep, a dwarf by the name of Jorun Gemcarver, took up command of the order in the Knight’s absence and it has been commanded by bailiffs ever since. That was more than four hundred years ago.
The induction ceremonies of the Order are deeply kept secrets, but are open to any who can prove themselves capable of fighting against the evil that still waits in the swamp. It accepts rangers, fighters, arcanists, rogues, anyone who can bring the fight to the ancient enemy. The Order’s duties as a peacekeeping force in the City of Treff are, and have always been, ancillary to this mission. They’re happy enough to provide justice for the elves and lizards and merchants, when they can. But they are not true constables and the cause of fighting the ancient evils of the Anophelian dynasty always takes precedence.
There are those that argue, quietly, that the swamp has grown pacified enough that the order should be taking a more active role in enforcing justice in the city. But then some hideous abomination wearing a man’s flesh like a suit lures the unwary to their doom. Some long-forgotten construct emerges from the swamp and pummels innocent trappers to a gooey pulp. A river turns bright blue with some vile enchantment and all who drink of its waters forget their names. And the call goes out for aid, for someone to fight this evil. The Knights of the Order cannot refuse. They know what happens if these dark forces go unchallenged. They remember.