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Originally a citizen’s militia formed from a large group of hunters, the Saint-Roumain Militia (SRM for short) has become a pagan semi-religious order dedicated to the veneration of the Ashen Huntsman, a legendary hunter and soldier known for his steadfast defense of his charges.
Originating from the planet Illestren, which was colonized early in the expansionist period of space exploration by SolGov colonists, the Saint-Roumain Militia does little to discriminate in its inducted members, prioritizing skill and dedication over species or gender.
How to Play this Faction
Members of the Saint-Roumain Militia are best described as intelligent, methodical types with a tendency to hyperfocus on specific tasks. While they may have a reputation for being stick-in-the-muds, Hunters can be friendly and sociable while also maintaining their prowess and dedication.
Structure and Operations
The Saint-Roumain Militia consists of several companies each lead by a Huntsman, a long-time member of the organization who serves a similar role to a cardinal in Catholic doctrine. These men, women and otherwise are selected from a bevy of veteran Masters (similar in duties to bishops) and, rarely, Hunter Montagnes (similar in duties to priests or rabbis). Below Masters and Hunter Montagnes are Hunters, regular devotees to the Ashen Huntsman who hunt and perform mercenary work in his service, who in turn train Shadows, trainees hoping to enter the Saint-Roumain Militia.
Funding for the Saint-Roumain Militia comes from a mix of exotic hunting (ranging from capturing creatures unharmed for collectors or preservation, to wiping out unruly stampedes of wild beasts for farmers and rich landowners), mercenary work (though more often for their services as guides and experts than as traditional muscle) and the sale of firearms from their in-house workshops, known as Hunter's Pride. Most Saint-Roumain vessels and teams host three to five Hunters, alongside one Hunter Montagne and three Shadows. The Hunter Montagne leads the group and coordinates daily operations, the Hunters form the core of the strike-force and specialist work, and the Shadows serve as grunts, students and laborers. There are very few contracts a veteran Militia team will refuse, though they are unlikely to assist in the movement of narcotics or slaves outside of desperate measures. Members of the Saint-Roumain Militia favor manual-action firearms and blades, relying on prowess, accuracy and sufficiently-high-caliber over advanced technology and overwhelming volume of fire. Additionally, members of the sect favor herbal remedies and their infamous "trickwines" (highly specialized tinctures used both as medicines and as weapons similar to molotov cocktails or chemical bombs) rather than traditional chemical medicines or weapons.
“In His name, we maintain dominion over nature, dominion over the chaos of our lives and dominion over ourselves. By defending ourselves and others, we defend His embers.”
Religious habits include consumption of undercooked- or charred meat, sleeping on dirt or soil from their home planet and regular meditation. Traditional clothing for members of the Militia include cotton, leather, hide and other natural components, eschewing modern machined materials with the exception of body armor. Militia members submit themselves to rigorous physical routines, prioritizing agility, stealth and pain resistance - a point of pride for many Hunter Montagnes is their ability to maintain perfect stillness for days at a time, even when gravely injured. Despite stereotypes and rumors, very few if any Militia members practice ritual sacrifice (in the form of quarries) to the Ashen Huntsman, instead using their prayers and actions to venerate. The core values of any Militia member is cooperation with their fellow Hunters, self-improvement and triumph over nature.
Given their religious habits, none of the major factions usually hire Militia mercenaries to serve on their vessels. Veneration of the Ashen Huntsman is not forbidden, however, under Nanotrasen company policy. Saint-Roumain Militia members are reasonably popular hires on independent vessels due to their dedication, skill and their generally-ascetic practices reducing their room and board.
As part of the Saint-Roumain Militia's efforts towards self-sufficiency, they created the Hunter's Pride corporation, which is a semi-independent firearms manufacturer company that supplies the Militia with much of its armaments. Further details about Hunter's Pride can be found here.
The Secret History
In reality, unbeknownst to any modern individuals, devotees or not, the Ashen Huntsman is actually derived from a legend. In the years after the Night of Fire, tales circulated of a wandering survivalist who traveled the scorched lands of the former Mediterranean, particularly in the regions of mainland Italy, southern France and Spain. It is said that they were incredibly proficient in methods of survival, combat and field medicine, and they used their gifts to assist his fellow survivors in any way he could. Over time, tales of his efforts spread, and persisted long after his likely death of old age. These stories morphed and grew, and the line between truth and myth blurred. Soon, he was capable of felling any creature, man or beast, with a single shot of his rifle. He could find clean drinking water by wetting his finger and feeling the air for water vapor. Before long, this nameless survivalist became known as the Ashen Huntsman. As SolGov colonists set out into the unknown to colonize new planets, they carried his tale of survival, talent and valor in their hearts and minds, retelling of his methods and ideas in order to steel themselves for the challenges that would come.