Tuesday, May 01, 2012

The Razormaids

In a setting that's famous for its skullduggery; a setting where every urban center is a wretched hive of scum and villainy, it should be unsurprising that there are a number of organizations throughout the setting dedicated to the craft of assassination.  Many of these are quite infamous, including the Union of the Snake, the Black Cluachla--the "special ops" division of the original Cherskii Mafia organization, and others.  One of the most colorful, however, is the Razormaids.  Always a female-only organization, the Razormaids were originally founded in Terrasa itself, by the Queen some three hundred years ago, Reina Teodora Napoleona Albergo as a kind of secret service in place of eunuch guards, which were otherwise the fashion at the time.  Brutally and efficiently trained, they became fanatically loyal.  Later in a dynastic change, it was demonstrated to their loyalty was to the heiress of the Queen, and not to the state.  The organization was forced underground.

Even today, the controlling matron of the Razormaids is a pretender to the crown, although any claim to any throne has long-ago passed on and they have no intention or desire to pursue it.  Instead of a bodyguard and special ops role, the organization has become a premier hired assassin guild, and while the Reina (the title that the leader of the guild still holds, out of tradition) rules in splendor--without the overt political power, but with wealth and influence that even the organization's founder may well not have enjoyed.  The current Reina of the Razormaids is Sobeyrana Viars d'Guizas.

Although assassins (and their various dependents over time) are extremely privileged and well-treated by the organization, the start of the career of an assassin is usually quite harrowing.  Many young girls have been kidnapped over the years; most recently, they have been bought as slaves in the markets of Sarabasca as youngsters--usually no more than 8 years old.  Their initial training regimen has harsh and long; not unlike that of the Spartan warriors from history in the real world in many regards.

One side effect of picking up so many girls in Sarabasca is that the ethnic and cultural trends within the organization have gradually taken on a patina of Qizmir influences.  The Reina, who reigns in Terrasa, is infamous not only as a master of assassins of high repute, but also as a matron of some of the most exotically beautiful girls in the city.  Not that their identities aren't strictly confidential, of course, but rumor and reputation often run wild in the absence of facts.

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