Knights of Caipharos
The Knights of Caipharos are an ancient organization of paladins and clerics who worship Caipharos. Despite the loss of their deity at the time of The Great Fall, the group has managed to maintain its existence. This continued existence owes itself to two facts: First, the Inquisitors and Heretic Hunters have been unable to locate the fortress from which the Knights operate. And second, the Knights operate mostly in secret. The followers of The Three have worked endlessly to cover up the fact that they have been unable to root out the remnants of the organization and destroy it. Few members of the public even know that they still exist. And the Knights are content to keep it that way, for now. In the days of old, the Knights of Caipharos were a powerful society, doing good in the name of their god throughout the world. These days, they continue to do good. They just do it carefully, and in secret where possible. When it is not possible, a Knight of Caipharos will gladly lay down their lives in the cause of their god. The headquarters of the Knights is a mighty, ancient fortress known simply as the House. It is uncertain how the House has remained undiscovered all this time. Even when Inquisitors have managed to capture and break one of the Knights, the information gained has never allowed them to find the fortress. A faithful Knight, however, has no problem finding an unerring path back home when the need to return arises.
Operating In SecrecyThe Knights operate in secrecy by following a number of protocols:
- When operating in a city, a paladin of Caipharos will typically operate as a member of the city guard, the local army or as a hired mercenary. A cleric will typically operate as an alchemist, a physician or businessman.
- When operating in an adventuring group, a paladin or cleric of Caipharos will pose as the servant of one of The Three. They will not join any group that has among its members an Inquisitor or Heretic Hunter in order to avoid discovery.
- When operating alone in rural areas, both paladins and clerics will travel disguised as poor wanderers, migrant workers, or vagrants.
- When travelling in large groups or by water, both paladins and clerics will keep their armor and weapons packed and hidden away and travel as a simple citizen.
- A caravan comes under attack. The Knight believes the caravan guards will likely be enough to defeat the attackers. They will not act.
- An Inquisitor is interrogating people as they arrive at the city gates. The Knight will lie about their beliefs and identity.
- A ship comes under attack by pirates. The Knight knows that many of the crew and passengers will die if they do not act. The Knight will join the battle.
- A group of Heretic Hunters know the Knight is in the village. They will execute one citizen every 10 minutes until the Knight is found. The Knight will reveal themselves and fight until death or victory to protect the village.
Agents of CaipharosNot all who work for the Knights are paladins or clerics. The Knights have developed one of the best intelligence networks on the planet. Known as the Agents of Caipharos, these spies and operatives have infiltrated nearly every government and major organization on Aeleon. Agents provide critical intelligence to the Knights to guide and direct their operations to maximum effectiveness. In order to protect both groups, Knights in the field almost never become aware of who local Agents of Caipiharos are, and vice-versa. Agents report up through spymasters in each area the House and that information is disseminated back down to individual Knights as needed. When direct contact is necessary, alternate disguises, identities and locations are used by both sides.
Communication StonesKnights and spymasters have magical stones for communication over great distances. Each stone has a matching stone at the House. When holding the stone and speaking the command word, a mental connection is established to the person holding its matching stone. The thoughts of one are known and understood by the other.
Tenets of Faith
The core tenet of the faith of the Knights is to work against the power of The Three in whatever way they can in the name of Caipharos. So long as even one of them yet survives, they will continue the struggle.
While Caipharos is a lawful good deity, the Knights are permitted to make use of deception, distortion and outright lies, so long as it serves the core mission of fighting the oppression of The Three and so long as such lies do not endanger innocent lives. As might be expected with such a policy, more than one Knight has delved too deeply into their cover story and lost their way. Some find their way back, some do not.
Granted Divine Powers
To those Knights working under cover is granted the ability to mask their divine energies and their alignment to match that of their cover story.