An Empty Throne
The Blackened Ring is not in itself a mercenary company instead it is a guild which organizes and facilitates the hiring of local mercenaries and sell-swords for specific jobs. The Ring establishes prices for a specific set of services, although other services can be arranged with the mercenary once haggling begins. The Ring ensures a certain code of honor within the constraints of reason. They will ensure that this code is adhered to by one means or another. Few mercenaries who have joined the guild are willing to go against it in regards to this code. The reach of the Blackened Ring is long and it does not forget.
While many mercenary companies spawn chapter houses – which are rife with corruption and iniquity, some acting as little more than paid brigands – the Blackened Ring has only authorized contracts. If a client is dissatisfied with the service provided by the guild recommended mercenary, the guild will dispatch and investigatory team to verify the veracity of the claim. If it is found the client has been wronged the guild will seek to find suitable compensatory trade to rectify the situation – they will also extend an extreme repercussion upon the mercenary who failed to live up to the level of service under the authorized contract. If however it is determined that the claim is fraudulent or entered as a harassment of the mercenary, or as an attempt to unjustly embarrass the guild – a way will be sought to collect from the perpetrator the expense of the investigation with compounded interest.
The Ring maintains an elite mercenary list of premiere active personnel for the client who seeks a higher level of skill. Mercenaries can apply to the Blackened Ring to acquire this status as well. The Ring is not a mercenary company they do not train or equip individuals as a standard organizations. They recruits companies not individuals, collecting membership tithe from these organizations. The Ring has a reputation for employing mercenaries who are effective in a unit, efficient, and resolute – they are also known to be less than principled on occasion, to down right unscrupulous depending on how tightly the are leashed by the signed contract. This variable standard of behavior has led them being less-than-well-liked in some parts of the world. Still, they continues to grow and flourish despite (or perhaps because of) their reputation as cut-throat, win-at-all costs mercenaries.
The stated Goal of the company is to “… provide a reliable and efficient means of hiring and contracting men-at-arms, while ensuring reasonable prices and rates, to the betterment of all.” In short, the main goals of the Ring is to provide a fair and stable method for individuals or organizations to hire adventurers or mercenaries, without having to track them down, or worry about being double-crossed or over-charged. While the Ring is not in itself a Mercenary Company – it is minimally concerned about the well being of its members. The Ring will provide its members with discounted and reliable training, gear, room and board. It should be noted that it is not within the interests of the Ring to improve the fair standards of the mercenary industry as a whole.