The Guardians of Palantir
The Birth of the Academy
The armies of the Imperium were all but decimated after the Dragon Wars. Most kingdoms didn’t bother to rebuild their armies, seeing as the Maelstrom offered permanent protection from a Thrargok invasion. Instead, they kept up their city guards to deal with local peacekeeping and relied on the Imperium to manage the bigger problems, were they ever to arise.
Of the soldiers that survived the Dragon Wars, about a hundred went to Palantir and swore to continue to protect the Imperium. They were mostly called upon to deal with threats that were too difficult for city guards, and soon became known as the protectors of the people, guardians. Soon, they were referred to as the “Guardians of the Imperium” or the “Guardians of Palantir” or simply as the “Guardians”.
As years went by and the war veterans making up the Guardians started to age, finding and training new recruits became a top priority. Many adventurous youths volunteered for the grueling training, especially those from the kingdoms closest to Palantir. Other recruits were found by the Imperium Oracles. They would have visions of men and women who had the potential of greatness within the Guardians. Their visions were unbiased by race, sex, age or kingdom. Sometimes, they would point to someone living in one of the independent kingdoms, and a team had to be sent to convince whoever it was to join the Imperium and the Guardians.
To train these new recruits, the Onyx Tower (almost a mirror of the Council’s Ivory Tower) was erected in Palantir. It consisted of a training arena and armouries on the ground floor, followed by several floors of classrooms (where the recruits would learn about the various kingdoms, their languages, magic, rituals, battle tactics, etc) and dormitories (where recruits and full-fledged Guardians would stay). This would become the Academy, and recruits had to study for a grueling 5 years before attempting the final exam that would allow them to join the ranks of the Guardians.