The Inner Bastion
The Grand Navarch laughed. "Good? Who said I was good?" Temz paled. "I just thought... After all you've done..." "There's a difference between doing good and being good." Orange eyes flickered as Shane emerged from the shadows, a sinister figure in his unadorned black uniform. "Don't ever mistake me for the latter." Shivers ran down his spine at the Grand Navarch's every threatening step, but Temz held his ground, jutting his chin defiantly. Shane's personal guard, a stern freckled woman with a head of unruly red curls cascading down her back, tensed as she observed their encounter.The Inner Bastion includes only the most trusted of the Mordena. Members must possess expertise in their chosen field, conviction in defending their morality, and the fearlessness to inform Shane Lawrence when they believe he is wrong. Due to past experiences and traumas, Grand Navarch Shane Lawrence views the universe and his options to save it in severe black and white terms. The Inner Bastion serves as the last bulwark to prevent his more dangerous and violent side in overtaking the good he strives to accomplish.
"You've done so much for the universe, for those who can't defend themselves." Temz crossed his arms, meeting the imposing necromancer's gaze. "If you're not good, how would you describe yourself?" Shane paused, looking to his guard as if for an answer. "Driven." He stepped closer, and Temz couldn't stop himself from taking a few steps backward in response. "I see the pain caused by all these meaningless wars, and I want to end it. And nothing will stand in my way. And if I decide it'll take another genocide to get there..." Somehow Temz felt Shane's smirk grow even more sinister. "What's once more? Wouldn't even blink."
The Bastion has no official leader, answering directly to the Grand Navarch but with no obligation to obey his orders. To become a Bastion is to earn the trust required to stand up to Mordena leadership, questioning intended plans of action on moral grounds or any other well-articulated reason, even as they prepare others to support and enforce the orders. A Bastion knows when to stand their ground and when to defer to the better argument.
"But then why hasn't the Mordena...?" Temz was against the wall now, fingers splayed as he pressed his palms against the cold unfeeling metal. The necromancer towered over him ominously before pulling away suddenly, chuckling. He motioned to his guard, the woman relaxing slightly at Shane's apparent amusement. But only slightly. "Why do you think I'm never left unsupervised?"The Inner Bastion was formed not long after the official founding of the Mordena, once several key members determined Shane Lawrence would benefit from additional supervision. Bastions serve as equal parts personal body guards, intelligence advisors, and consciences to the Grand Navarch. The posting is informal, and awarded with concurrence of the other Bastions rather than Mordena leadership, but remains the highest honor within the Mordena. Upon Shane's death during The Evacuation of Garnell the Inner Bastion was no longer required to provide constant supervision of the Grand Navarch. They still serve as an informal inner circle within the Mordena, assisting Navarch Talin and the Mordena Security Council with delicate Intelligence matters. If Shane's successor and son, Jake, leaves Janikk for any reason a member of the Inner Bastion will also lead his Security detail.
Members of the Bastion are loyal to Shane Lawrence, and he to them. An individual must earn Shane's personal respect and that of the Bastion's other members before they, too, can be considered one of Shane's elite guard.
Temz blinked. "I thought they were bodyguards?" "Since when has death stopped a necromancer?" Shane grinned, placing a hand on the Bastion's shoulder. She nodded once in return, retreating back into the corner shadows. "I'm not the one who needs protecting." "And you just... Let them watch you like that?" Temz found himself overrun with curiosity. Although I'll probably be absolutely terrified. Once the shock wears off. A shrug. "Why not? They're right." Shane began to pace, slowly and deliberately. "Left to my own devices I'd cause more problems than I fixed. Cause more people like me." He stopped, turning to face Temz with a cold orange stare. "I may not be good, but I am pragmatic."