Council of Swords
The Council of Swords is a six man council that operate as the head of the Toran military power structure. Once it was perceived that Auria would be a certain and direct threat to Torash’s survival the Council of Swords were called to take over rulership of Torash wholesale to prepare it for the war to come.
This worked in that Redwatch was designed and begun in time for it to play its role in saving Torash, and the border forts were devised, created and manned. After they played their role in the War of Thorns the forts were significantly upgraded at the Council’s behest.
The Council also saw to the creation of the inner forts, which saved the country during the Elygian invasion. They saw the need for, masterminded, ordered and carried out the invasions and subjugations of the various surrounding city states in order to secure Torash and make it strong enough to repel Auria when that nation finally did attack Torash.
The council are chosen from the best High Blades, the top rank available in the Toran army. Any of the living Council may nominate but it takes a majority (i.e. 3 as one of the Council is being replaced) to elect a new member.
A decree by the council can be made law by the ‘Saying’ of the Council which means at least three of the Council backed it. These however can be overturned by other ‘Sayings’ of an equal level (Still there is a need for three so majorities tend to stand they are known as strong sayings ie 4-2 or 5-1). If, as is frequently the case in military matters, the Council comes to a collective consensus and votes unnanimously on a law it is not called a saying but a ‘declaration’ of the Council of Swords.
It should be mentioned that to be a member of the Council makes you automatically a prime target for Imperial Assassins. Many times throughout the centuries members of the Council who were causing a lot of trouble for Auria were killed by Knight Stalkers. Only once however was this enough to provoke an outward responce by the Council. This was when all six of the Council were killed within three days at Redwatch. What followed was an outpouring of grief, anger and chagrin and a demand for blood. It resulted in Torash declaring war on Auria and invading in what would later be called the War of Vengeance. They are comprehensively beaten and the Aurians invaded Torash in return. It was later brought to a end in a treaty that gave Auria some new lands but mitigated the disaster for Torash.
Being led by your top generals, while good for war, isn’t good for anything else. Toran civilisation levels dropped, religious communities became more narrow minded and Barrak became the only god widely worshiped, free thought became stunted and trade lessened. The Council weren’t very effective at overseeing crop rotations, handling famine, wide spread disease, poverty, education or even hygiene. So they created the civil service and area governors to help. Yet these individuals all know that they owe their allegiance and must explain their expenditures to whole sale military leaders. This makes the Council a two sided coin. In war indominable, in defeat unconquerable, in victory unanswerable but in peacetime unusable.
By the time of the Second Dragonite Invasion many Torans have become dissatisfied with their leadership, lack of military successes or need for the military has the Toran nation looking around itself jealous of its neighbours, many are leaving for better lives elsewhere. It is due to this that Jakator Crane of the Council of Swords suggested the secret alliance with the dragonites. Rather than take the brunt of the invasion as they had the first time Torash would secretly land dragonite forces ready for a crushing landward assault on Oakland as the dragonite navy simultaneously invaded from the sea. Due to the complicity of underground movements within Auria notably the Grim Reapers assassins’ guild the invasion was an initial success. Auria suffered several crushing defeats at Yewdon and at Oakhome. However no one could have foreseen the hold at Silverscale or the influence of the Stars of Destiny. The invasion, a sure thing, was defeated, the Grim Reapers broken, Torash exposed and Auria could have wrecked a terrible vengeance, but for the military coup that took place during the fighting. Torash survived and the Council of Swords never really answered for what it had done… until the rise of The Avenger.
Return to Torash.