At this time, not much information can be posted on the world of Pahmoten, as the internet is full of dangers; since material on Pahmoten has yet to be published, there is still the unfortunate possiblity of stolen intellectual property.
Unless otherwise noted, all information needing specific dates refers to the 17th Age.
Ceydalic Knights/Order, or Knights of Ceydal
The Ceydalic Knights were founded by Rye Goldan in the 12th Age, later known as the Age of Peace. Rye Goldan was a native noble of K'lar and possessed a fortress on land in western Skicheo (central K'lar). The order is based out of five levels:
Arm: An Arm of Ceydal, around 14 or 16 years old, is what every new recruit is called. Arms are taught the basic tenets of the Ceydalic Order, most importantly strength. To graduate from being an Arm, the knight must prove himself to his peers and superiors through action (and inaction) and sword forms. The first level's challenges were inspired by the early tests set upon Goldan and his men, steeling themselves against the hunger and the elements that unhospitable citizens subjected them to.
The story quoted below is that told by Priest Otem to young Then'ra in the 17th Age:
“The soldiers in his employ came with, of course, as well as most of the able-bodied men living on his land, so loyal were they to their master. They helped throw back attacks and fortify the towns’ defenses where they could.”
“And did they reward him for their good deeds?” Then’ra asked.
He shook his head,“The people were suspicious. They thought Rye was there to take advantage of them, to…to hit them while they were down, so to speak. Many times they had to camp outside of the cities. Rye made all his men promise not to ask for anything in return, but they were furious! Here was their lord and master helping out of the goodness of his heart, deserting his land and fortune, and they were accused of greed. But the men obeyed his wishes. They grew stronger as the days went by—sleeping in the wilds and living off the land—and hardened themselves against the physical strain..."
Agile: Agiles are taught swiftness, both in combat and in thinking. Tests lain upon these knights are no less strenuous than those given to Arms. Before advancing to Just, the Agiles' sword forms require skill in not only strength, but agility and precision:
“Then…then they began to draw the attention of the enemy. They learned to recognize his colors and territory. The dark armies concentrated their attacks on Irkdannor and overpowered him. They had no choice but to run, and no one would take them in. Their numbers dwindled and threatened to die completely when Rye realized he needed a change in tactics. He trained his army to be swift and…invisible. When they met their opponents on their own terms, with lightning counterattacks and ambushes, their footholds became solid once again..."
Just: The demands on Justs are those belonging to thought and reason. In addition to the mandatory sword forms, they must demonstrate to their superiors integrity and an understanding of why the Ceydalic codes are the way they are, from mercy, to ferocity in battle, to protecting the weak, to honoring women, to acceptance of other races and creedos. The Brothers and Errants are notorious for never discussing what exactly prevents Justs from advancing to the next level; this is a time for knights to reflect inwardly and judge what they have done, and why a man should value the Ceydalic philosophy. Their peers look for self-acceptance first, before passing their own judgment on the Just:
“Goldan’s army was no more than two hundred strong. That the men were free to come and go did not help their situation any. They were facing a…a gruesome challenge once they caught wind of enemy movements. In the forests one day, an elf Ferilaanth sought them out, asking help from Rye and his troops. He wanted them to stand with the soldiers of their city to hold back the dark armies while citizens from their outlying lands retreated to safety. Rye was never one to refuse help to those who needed it. It took a month or two before they were all safe…tucked away within the city walls.”
“City? What city?”
“Sordim was its name, an Elven city, but it has since disappeared from our records. The elves and men came to have a better understand of each other. Once the job was done, some of the elves stayed with Goldan, and some split into smaller squadrons, bent on drumming up support for the resistance in the north. Ferilaanth was forever grateful to Rye, and they parted ways as friends.
“Goldan stayed in Irkdannor and held the lines ‘til the very end. He was convinced that some higher power was with him, for whenever their numbers seemed to dwindle, others would arrive to help. It got to the point where the dark armies wanted nothing else but to…to remove this thorn from their foot. Men and minotaur flocked to the south, gnome and Northman, and they pushed back strong enough that the enemy had to pull out and give up on their hopes for conquest...”
Errant: Up until this point, the knight has usually completed most of his studies within the walls of the Ceydal, the fortress built upon the very ground Rye Goldan once held in his name. A Ceydalic Errant is dedicated to the people of K'lar, serving where needed and with any energy he possesses; most knights choose an area in which they are most interested. The study of magic, architecture, teaching battle tactics, the bardic arts, carpentry or blacksmithing, and so. They apply their talents, minds, and mindsets to the home of Ceydal so that it might be prepared for the future. Many citizens may see an Errant everyday for years and never know the man to be in the service of Ceydal. Graduating from the Errant level requires no sword form, but solely approval of the Brothers and the Ceydalic Council (composed of one representative of each order, plus the Head of the Order):
“And they made Rye king. King of K’lar,” Then’ra smiled.
“Not…quite yet. K’lar was then a dead war zone. Towns had been decimated, confidence crushed, and peoples lost. Rye rolled up his sleeves and spent years sweating, bleeding, aching, and crying beside his fellow K’larens. There wasn’t a wall nor roof in our country that didn’t have some part of Goldan in it. Cities slowly grew, and eventually trade started once again. The first time Rye Goldan sat, it’s said, since the beginning of the war, was at a harvest festival in Pel’s Corners on the slopes of the Hewn Mountains. He looked at his hands, and when he thought about all he had done…”
Here Otem stopped and flipped over his own. His crinkled palms were exposed to the air, to his and Then’ra’s judgment. Had anyone passed by the room, they would have seen only a boy and man lounging on the windowsill, in the thrall of a good story. But any passerby could not see into the priest’s head.
“He wanted to keep the spirit of his deeds alive…and that was when he started the idea of the Ceydalic Order. He put part of his ordeals into each level of the knighthood. That’s why today, Recruits are taught strength, Agiles are taught to find ways around strength, Justs are taught wisdom, Errants must find themselves through service and reflection. Once they master those, they become Brothers. Rye returned to his home on the coast and began work on the Ceydal fortress...”
Brother of Goldan: The final level of the Ceydalic is to be a Brother of Goldan. Brothers, as Goldan was, are an inspiration to anyone whom they meet, even in passing or in reputation. They have shown and continue to uphold all aspects of their order, including military prowess, leadership, literacy and study, service, humility, and integrity. Generally a man does not reach Brotherhood until his late 30's. The youngest age that any knight has attained Brother was 24, one Halthorn Fi'delisan, a nativeborn K'laren from Zelion in the 17th Age:
“But wasn’t he crowned king?”
“Patience, my child, patience. In the next year, stories spread about Goldan, and invitations to celebrations and holidays extended to him from all corners of K’lar, but he would not abandon his task. K’larens began to see that in their darkest hours, they would find hope in Goldan—a mention of his name, a reference to a story he told, a smile he had once given.That was when they came to him, the leaders of all the races came to him, standing among stones his own size, and deemed him worthy of the title of king.”
The World of Pahmoten, associated images and concepts (C) Rebecca Glon