[Northkeep] Baronial guard question for Damon
darin.herndon at chk.com
Mon May 11 08:01:23 PDT 2009
Setting aside your accidental post but focusing on your core question about bondi... I was a bondi when the coronets were entrusted to our first Baron and Baroness, Thorgrim and Sigen. I never swore the oath. That was the difference between the bondi and the other status ("Carl?"). The difference was the oath. Anyone acceptable to their excellencies could serve and their service was welcome; and we wore tabards that were plain red on the front. Could children in service wear bondi tabards as they participated and learned about service and oaths and responsibility? Sure. If the B&B are comfortable with that person (adult or child).
I am not sure what changes have happened in guard structure since I left the barony but that was the difference back when I was in the guard.
In a lot of baronies, if you are in their guard then you have to swear an oath. Otherwise you cannot be in the guard and serve. You can serve in other ways, but not as a guard. When I served in the guard, I also served as baronial herald. I did not want to swear an oath as a guardsman when I knew that other duties would frequently, and directly, conflict with the scheduled needs of the guard. But when I could serve, fire watch, patrol, etc. then I would. Later, I became active in regional and kingdom offices and activities. Again, I wanted to serve when I could but could not make the commitment of the oath without reservations. And I preferred to not make the oath at all with reservations in my mind rather than commit to something that I knew I could not fulfill by oath.
By the time of our second B&B, I was too involved in outside-the-barony activities and I never even took the tabard and duties of a bondi. I was still there and served when I could, but just as a populace member.
Being in the bondi, to me, was kind of like being a reservist. Not exactly, but sort of. I was in the guard forces. When I fought at any conflict in the Northkeep forces, I fought as a bondi in my tabard. When I could serve on fire watch, etc., or help in the hall, I served as a bondi in my tabard. On only a couple of occasions was I able to actually serve in court, or stand with my B&B, but when I did, it was as a bondi in my tabard. But I was an on-call, when available, not full-time, kind of guard. I knew bondi that later chose to make the oath and trade tabards. I did not because of competing commitments.
In a lot of ways, I would have rather sworn the oath. It certainly would have meant a lot to be sworn to my B&Bs and I still would have served at every opportunity that they and my captain requested, and where I could. But, I could not make that commitment without knowing the distractions it would face. That did not mean there were not times that I looked at the other guards a little wistfully; but that was the way things needed to be. And I never felt that my service as a bondi was unappreciated. And I never felt forced or nudged to have to make an oath.
On a separate note, under each B&B we have had, over time, some people face life's distractions, or job moves, or family issues, or health, and their energy, time, and ability to serve get pulled away. Each B&B so far, has chosen a new captain, made adjustments to the guard, and generally released the prior guard and then invited/recruited (with many re-upping another tour of duty). Guards are usually released, in most baronies, when a B&B step down. And then a new recruitment cycle begins. That is not required; just normal.
Note that none of the above is more than my opinion and perception of what happened when I was involved. But I hope that helps any who are looking back at history and then turning and looking forward to what needs to happen for the barony in the future.
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