Crafting Motif 83: Pyre Watch Style

Author: Tazheq at-Rajd

By Tazheq at-Rajd, Honored Scribe of Histories for the Pyre Watch

Death must be the end. The Pyre Watch requires each of its warriors uphold this demand. Those who come after may see piles of ash and bone in our charge and believe the task beneath them. "What danger," they may ask, "poses this dust?" But we who witnessed the horde of blood ghouls and man-beasts march upon the gates of Bangkorai remember. A horror rests within this Unhallowed Grave. Know well our order's arms and armor that give us the strength to defend the living. Because, the Gray Host shall not wake. Death must be the end.

AXES
Although our people more commonly use swords in battle, a brutal axe offers unique advantages to those who wield them. Weighted blades carry the axes through wide cutting arcs. When beset on all sides by fiends, the ability to bring them low with a single swing may determine whether you fall then or at the next battle.

BELTS
The Gray Host did not fight at a distance. Their army fought us hand-to-claw, eye to bloody eye. Any warrior caught by the long talons of some undead beast did not stand for long. Cinch your belts tight; fluttering cloth provides an opportunity. And bear boldly the Pyre Watch sigil on your buckle, so those you meet know your sacrifice.

BOOTS
The Pyre Watch stands vigil to assure no one enters the Unhallowed Grave, and nothing leaves. We demand our warriors stay alert for any disturbance in the remains of our enemy. Focusing on the pain in your feet might distract at a crucial moment. And so, we craft our boots from supple leather to ensure prolonged comfort.

BOWS
When the Gray Host came to Bangkorai, I stared frozen in despair as a clot of vile ghouls ran at me. If not for the alacrity of our archers, my death was certain. Waves of arrows rained down, felling enough of the enemy for me to regain my nerve. Our bows' superior speed and power determine how many brethren stand or fall.

CHESTS
While heavy metals can provide protection against blade or arrow, they slow down their wearer. When the enemy are preternaturally quick undead, speed matters more. We craft our chest armor with tight-fitting, supple leather to keep our response times fast. If the vampires and wolves reach us, metal armor won't stop their claws.

DAGGER
Deadly, quick, and perfectly balanced in every way. These qualities define the Pyre Watch daggers. The blade's gentle curve reflects an elegant sleekness of all Bangkorai design. We keep them hidden but always at the ready, much like ourselves.

GLOVES
We of the Pyre Watch serve as weapons against the darkness. Just as a blade must respond to its wielder's whim, so should our bodies deftly answer the commands of Tu'whacca. The gloves we wear provide ultimate flexibility and grip so that we may honor the Tricky God and not lose our steel in times of battle.

HELMET
As members of the Pyre Watch, we forego our pasts in service of a higher purpose. Our former lives must end to remove anything that may distract from our purpose. By covering our faces, we remove our identity and demonstrate our total commitment to the cause.

LEGS
Even now, I feel certain that villains plot to resurrect our buried foes. Pants and skirts of flexible horse leather with minimal plating allows us to spring into action at the sign of any threat. If you must run, spin, or leap to end a threat, this legwear will not interfere.

MACES
If you require more than a single swing of a weapon to bring down a foe, then you invite your own death. The heft of our hammers, when properly applied, ensure their target shall not move again. Even vampires pose no threat with a crushed skull.

SHIELD
The Gray Host served darkness. And in darkness their ashes shall remain. And though the Pyre Watch holds vigil in the black, we stand for the light. Our shields of burnished silver and gold reminds any who meet you in the Grave who you serve.

SHOULDER
Defend your shoulders well. Even a shallow gash from a claw can make your arms unusable. Pliant, yet thick leather allows for range of movement. And added tiered metal plating protects those who fight face to fang.

STAVES
The Gray Host moves at great speed on the field of battle. Mages at range often found themselves engaging up close. Although crafted from fine Mournoth timber, the Pyre Watch reinforces our staves with metal plating for added strength. They shall not splinter when struck across a ghoul's face.

SWORDS
The tales of great swordfighters among our people could fill libraries. Every sword we craft must honor that legacy. The intricate designs embossed in the blade and its perfect balance are the culmination of generations of the finest metalworkers.

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