Joining the Riders
When the riders began they were a small organization, they trained elite soldiers on horseback and raided villages of savage humanoids. The orcs and goblins they have slain in their time have saved countless lives. Many of the members were Rowena militiamen or city guards, nowadays membership is much more varied. People come from all walks of life and demonstrate their ability to perform as a Rider. If the applicant can complete a timed trial on an appropriate course for their steed and display combat effectiveness to an instructor then they need only sign the contract to seal the deal.
Benefits of Membership
Annual dues are collected around the beginning of Frostmarch, Riders can expect a hearth and a stable at most major cities across Arkana. Some Riders have even gone overseas to establish guilds in Barden and Emeritt. The Riders are more powerful in a group than alone, so a Rider with some effort might be able to call upon his allies for help, either in defeating a savage enemy or some other task requested by the guild.
Riders are expected to be loyal to the guild first, they are often given strict orders to follow to maintain discipline. Riders are also trained to take care of their mounts and to never take unnecessary risks in battle. A Rider would most likely be calm in the face of danger and respond with urgency, but not haste. That being said, Riders can come from many backgrounds, those with military experience may behave far differently than freelancers who join up.
Most Riders have very strong combat backgrounds, they are often trained fighters, rangers or even cavaliers that learned to fight from horseback. They may have honed their talents in the guard or at war, or even hunting in the wilds. Few members of the Guild have arcane talents or affiliations with any temples.
Lore of the guild
The Riders first joined battle against an orc raid in the heart of Rowena. Fergus Malloye and his two sons were all in the militia, but they were out on patrol when the Orcs attacked and they returned to find the fiends pillaging and burning the village. On horseback they slew many orcs, but when the Orcs called their Worgs the horses became too hard to control. Fergus’ elder son was bucked off his horse and carried off in the jaws of a Worg while the father and son duo remained to fight. Fergus proved himself to be the better rider and warrior that day, but holding his slain son in his arms he swore to kill every orc who crossed his path for the rest of his days. It was decades ago, but the older members of the guild say that Fergus went into the woods, he didn’t return for three days. When he finally came back into town he was atop a huge Grey Worg, he formed The Riders on that day and went on to win many battles against the local orc tribes.
The guild has been expanding rapidly of late, supposedly its because the current leader, Amaryllis Malloye is a tactical genius. She assumed command of the guild when her father passed away, at the time she was only 16 years old. She’s been in charge for over a year now and the guild has more members than ever and is attracting all kinds of Riders. Few ever see Amaryllis, she works like a demon and her guards keep her hidden away so that her talent can’t be stopped.