The Mercenaries of St. Vicious
Cleric of Lok (god of bloody conquest and personal victory), veteran of religious gang wars
People from all over the world flock to St. Vincent and with them come their various religious beliefs. You have countless small cults worshiping minor regional entities all the way up to the gigantic cathedrals of the various major gods – and practically a dozen splinter groups for every single faction. There are those groups that live harmoniously with one another and then there are those that do not.
In the crowded slums of St. Vicious the more harmonious relations are few and far between. Different churches, abbys and covens all compete for influence over their various neighborhoods. These competitions often become violent and sometimes break out into outright urban warfare. Within the areas they control, these groups hold exclusive rights to the collection of ‘donations.’
The Soldiers of Lok are one of the many denominations of the major deity Lok. Lok is generally a war-like god but the various denominations have different interpretations: some believe in honorable combat others in defending their home. The Soldiers of Lok have a by-any-means-necessary approach. Out in the broader world armies commanded by the Soldiers of Lok have been known for burning cites to the ground, putting an entire villages to the sword, brandishing heads on pikes. In the slums of St. Vicious, the defense of their sphere of influence can be equally as brutal.
The son of a hopeless gambler and a surly barmaid, Damian was left to fend for himself on the streets of St. Vicious. The Soldiers of Lok were the dominant faction in his neighborhood to which he became a member at the age of 7. One night while he was foraging for food in an alleyway he was approached by an older deacon of the Soldiers and two young pledges. The deacon decided that Damien would be one of the pledge’s initiation into the Soldiers and commanded the pledge to attack. Damien doesn’t remember much of what happened next only that when he came to his jaw and ribs were throbbing, there was a bloody cobblestone in his hand and both pledges lie twitching on the ground. He remembers being flung over the deacon’s shoulder and the world went black again.
He awoke in the Soldier’s Hall and was nursed back to health. He was also told in no uncertain terms that Lok had chosen him to become a Soldier. The Hall was warm and the food was edible so he decided to stay. In those early years he vandalized and harassed the storefronts and merchant carts of those who did not adequately pay tribute to the Soldiers of Lok while also serving as a lookout against intrusions by rival sects. In the Soldier’s Hall he learned the art of healing to help treat the older members returning from battle. In his teenage years he began to collect ‘donations’ from those who wished to be in the Soldiers’ good graces or from those who simply feared retaliation. He also started to answer the call-to-arms when lookouts raised the alarm against intruders and rushed out into the streets to battle any rival incursion.
Having proven himself, on the 13th anniversary of his entrance into the Hall, Damien was granted his hammer and shield and was sent out into the world with Lok’s favor. His instructions were simple: demonstrate to the world, the power of the Soldiers of Lok.