Wielder of the Rose
The Wielder of the Rose is the leader of the Order of the Black Rose, so named due to the Sword of the Rose that chooses the next leader and signifies their rank. The Roses are an order of paladins, fighters, and common folk vital to the history of the elven planet of Veshiri.
The Wielder must be first proven upon the field of battle and in the healing houses. They must be trusted by their fellow Roses, and have been a Rose for a period of time measuring a minimum of ten years - often longer for the longer-lived sapients.
There are no requirements beyond service in the ranks.
The only formal requirement is for the Wielder to be accepted by the Sword of the Rose. However, a grand ceremony surrounds the appointment in modern times, in which every Rose not on an essential mission gathers to witness the would-be Wielders grasping the blade. The next Wielder was traditionally chosen the day of the previous one's death, in more turbulent times, but in the modern day the ceremony often coincides with the funeral of the previous Wielder.
The Wielder is expected to be a beacon of light in dark times, and an example to both the Roses and the populace. To build a better world, to fight evil wherever it lurks - these are the loftiest aims of that Order, and the goals that the Wielder must embody.
The Wielder is expected to be both a domestic and a military leader, though the battlefield is far less important in modern times. Still, if the peacekeeping forces of the Council of Worlds are deployed, the Roses are often right there with them, and many Roses are members of Veshiri's militia. Domestic responsibilities include overseeing various civil projects - primarily healing, construction, education, and outreach - and managing the finances of the Order.
The Wielder does not officially receive a salary or indeed any compensation whatsoever for the position, and most historic Wielders have gone so far as to take vows of poverty, giving their worldly possessions either directly to the poor or to a trust to benefit the Roses. Their needs are provided for, however, for each place the Roses have been established has barracks they may sleep in, and many people (especially in their home world of Veshiri) are happy to provide a sleeping place, if only for a night, in recognition of the service the Roses have performed. There are political benefits, for the Wielder of the Rose is held in high esteem and often listened to by Veshiri leaders both major and minor.
Accoutrements & Equipment
The Sword of the Rose is the only consistent equipment held throughout the rank's history. The modern Wielder also wears a blood steel suit of carefully articulated plate, especially in ceremonial duties.
Technically, the first leader of the Roses was the paladin Sabi Jobai who founded that order. However, the title of Wielder was only applied to her posthumously, as during her life the usual title was Grand Master, in the style of the Order of the Serpent and similar organizations. Sabi Jobai's home village was one of the first to fall to the Great Plague in the year 1,710 of the Dawn Era when she was a mere child. She was raised by a temple, and later joined the Order of the Serpent as a junior member. After the frosty reception to her manifesto A Declaration of the Rights of the Worldly Peoples, and the refusal of the leadership of the Serpents to thoroughly denounce the gods, Sabi struck out on her own, forming the Order of the Black Rose in the year 1,627 of the Dawn Era. The Black Rose increased in prominence over the next few decades, until their work drew the attention - and fury - of the god Imgah, and the resultant Rose War in the year 1,588 of the Dawn Era, where Sabi gave her life to strike down the god. Her sword was transformed by the god's blood, and became a sacred relic of her Roses. The next Grand Master of the Roses, Sabi's close friend and right-hand Ekhi Mei, was the first to be titled the Wielder of the Rose.
The Wielder is either highly respected or reviled by most in the planet of Veshiri, depending on their perception of the gods. The Roses have a scattered following on other planets, whether officially part of their network or utterly unaffiliated, who often view the Wielder in high esteem.
Sabi Jobai, the founder
Ekhi Mei, the close friend and right hand of Sabi and first to bear the title in life
- Religious, Military
- The title is in full effect
- Alternative Naming
- Grand Master of the Order of the Black Rose
- Equates to
- This title is equivalent to the leaders of other religious or military orders, such as the Grand Master of the Order of the Serpent.
- Source of Authority
- Currently, the acknowledgement of an artifact
- Length of Term
- Usually until death, extraordinary circumstance, or rejection by the Sword
- First Holder
- Sabi Jobai
- Past Holders
- Related Locations
- Related Organizations