In the year 1,588 of the Dawn Era, faith in the gods had long since been shattered by the events of the Great Plague
, which had ended only decades before when it finally ran out of victims. The Order of the Black Rose
declared the gods not only apathetic, as the Order of the Serpent
did, but actively malicious and a danger to the people of the world. That message resonated, especially with those groups who had been blamed for the plague - a significant portion of society, at some point or another.
The Roses' leader, Sabi Jobai
, formed a tremendous cult of personality around herself - and the god Imgah took notice and grew angry at the loss of worshipers and the disrespect alike. His Faithful declared war against the Roses, and Sabi rallied her people to meet them on the field of battle. She left her most trusted right hand in charge of the battlefield while she and a single cleric, an ex-priest, traveled between dimensions to the god's abode where she challenged him to single combat. The battle raged for hours, until each struck a killing blow - and died even as their opponent perished.
The effect on the battlefield was immediate, priests losing their spells and divine summons growing confused, and the cleric quickly gathered Sabi's body and returned, declaring what had happened. The Roses rallied around their fallen leader, heartened by the victory, and routed the Faithful.
Sabi's blade, however, had turned a blackish red like the roses from which the Order took its name. It was taken as an omen, that Sabi's strength and courage remained with them. Indeed, the sword became choosy about who would wield it, piercing the hands of those it rejected with sharp thorns, and the Roses declared that only those accepted may take Sabi's place at the helm.
The Rose Sword has tremendous cultural significance, and is venerated by the Order of the Black Rose especially. Acceptance by the Sword is required to lead the Roses.