I talked briefly about the first rank of soldier, the Guards, in our last class, so we won’t dwell on them too much today. These soldiers are typically stationed amongst the workers to protect them from any invaders and patrol the entrances. Because of their rank they become scarcely seen deeper towards the throne rooms, as they are not worthy of being stationed so close to the Royal Couple. Guards who are able to prove their value as a soldier through hard work or outstanding achievements are often promoted to Warrior, though some are content in their simple duties.
The Warriors are skilled fighters, and are equipped with a glistening shield and a large sword, impeccably made from Andor ores. Upon their chest they wear an armour crafted of ore and leather, acknowledging their station. These warriors patrol the caves beyond civilian clearance and are quick to act when intruders are reported within the kingdom.
Leading the Warriors and the Guards are the Captains. These soldiers are graced with a strong earthy-coloured plate armour that covers their torso, and matching gauntlets and boots. Perhaps their most distinctive feature is the tall helmet of matching material they wear, which is marked with the Queen’s gold sigil. When they take their oath as Captain they are given a stunning sword, made of Andor ore, and marked with a brilliant red edge to symbolize the blood they are willing to shed for their Queen.
The Captain’s role is to organize and oversee the Warriors and the Guards. Captains direct their squads in times of war and peace alike, whilst also patrolling and defending the deeper caves.
Not all those who are promoted from Warrior are made Captain. Some of the Warriors have skills in stealth combat, and are considered much more valuable as a solo artist than a squad leader. As such, an elite sect exists to train Assassins.
The Assassins are a discreet and secretive group who act under direct orders of the Queen herself. Their solitary life and stealth abilities prove incredibly useful to her when she requires a problem dealt with in silence. Because of their roguelike nature one does not often see these Assassins, and if they do it’s not likely they would survive to tell of it. A lucky few have managed to escape the Assassins, and all say that they first noticed what seemed to be a shadow following them.
I myself am one of the lucky few to have survived encounters with the Assassins. As the shadow quickly closes in and they strike I swear I see them in the same armour and carrying the same weapons as the Captains. But before I can catch my bearings they always disappear again and I’m left casting out spells into the air like a mad woman.
They are as elusive as they are deadly, and will follow you silently until they find the perfect moment to strike. I beg you, use caution should you ever cause the Queen enough worry to have her send them after you.
The highest order of the Queen’s Guard is that of Master. This rank is reserved for those who have managed to prove their irreplaceable worth to the Queen throughout their lifetime. The Masters are bold and revered soldiers, celebrated in many ways, and given a brilliant and intricately-crafted gold scythe. They are also adorned with a red-tinted leather tabard and boots, as well as red cuffed gauntlets crafted from Andor ore. Upon their tabard is the Queen’s emblem. Along with these status symbols the Masters are granted one more perk -- A wife.
Unlike the ants one might find ruining picnics in the Gardens of Loures, the Andorians have more than one female in the kingdom. The females are incredibly rare, and while they themselves don’t know it, they could pose a threat to the current Queen. The Queen, however, does know this. And so in a bid to keep them subservient, she keeps all of the females in her Royal Guard.
They are kept close to her at all times, well taken care of, and, consequently, loyal to her. They are beautifully dressed in both red and blue silks spun by the Queen’s Boros, and adorned with stunning jeweled necklaces of Andor ore. These creatures do not walk as the other ants do, for the female are born with powerful translucent wings. They do not have the same physical strength as the males, but are instead adept in magic, perhaps something the Queen herself has taught them.
If a Master wishes he may choose one of the Queen’s Royal Guard as his wife. The female has no say, but it is considered a high honour to be given to such a renowned soldier, and it is often a happy occasion for all involved. It unfortunately is not always a lasting union, but we will discuss this more in another class…
This concludes the end of our two part lesson on the various ranks of civilization for the Andorians.