"A squad of soldiers, trained in counterinsurgency tactics to fend off terrorists -- and to adopt the techniques of the Drifter, but to preserve civilization, rather than profit off it. That's the purpose of the Agile Remote Mission Squad."
- --Comments during an ARMS induction ceremony.
The Agile Remote Mission Squad (ARMS) is the private army of Lord Irving Vold Valeria of Meria Boule. ARMS was created in 499 PC to adopt the tactics used by Drifters and use them to combat threats of outlaws, monsters, and other incursions into the peace and sanctity of life across Aquvy -- and perhaps put a stop to another destructive war, before it can begin.
House Valeria is one of Filgaia's most ancient families, with a genealogy that can be traced back five thousand years to the older brother of the Sword Magess, Anastasia Valeria. Irving Vold Valeria is current head of House Valeria, and has been an active supporter of the arts and his nation. In recent years, however, he turned his attention to the state of the world's security and found it lacking.
The Agile Remote Mission Squad (ARMS) was the result of years of planning. ARMS was designed to use tactics and strategies employed by Drifters, but with a level of logistical support and military expertise typically only enjoyed by the armies of nation states. Though the nations of Aquvy are reluctant to grant a private army any sort of authority to act on their behalf, several noble and merchant houses in Guild Galad, Meria Boule, and Sylvaland have been bankrolling their operations. It operated in secret since its inception in 498 PC, though it enjoyed a highly successful mission in repelling a raid by the Quarter Knight Alhazred on a Sylvaland research facility in the summer of 500 PC.
It was not until after a tragic massacre at the Sword Cathedral that ARMS went public. ARMS declared that it would defend Aquvy, supported by Irving's fortune and the begrudging tolerance of the three remaining great powers in Aquvy -- which positions it uniquely to both try to rein in Drifters and fight against Odessa.
Culture and Orgaization
ARMS is Irving's private army. Irving is a pragmatic individual, but he is not especially charismatic, and he relies more on grim necessity to state the need for people to listen. He tries to convince his followers that the world needs them to work together; he is not, however, above blackmail and coercion for more troubling members. ARMS members are afforded a lot of latitude for independent action, but going against Irving's direct orders is frowned on.
ARMS is not, however, a traditional army. It has a large logistics force to support its core element: small squads of elite fighters, provided the best ARMs, training, and sorceries that Filgaians can find. Irving tends to recruit these fighters personally, and he treats them well. They receive room and board at Valeria Manor; they receive stipends and credit lines of gella that are staggering. Being a member of ARMS comes with enormous benefits.
ARMS, however, is ultimately dedicated to maintaining the status quo. It wants to save the world, but it also wants to keep the great powers in Aquvy in charge. Its awareness of Solaris, Shevat, and the Veruni is more limited -- but it is largely hostile towards all three of them. ARMS has a more paternalistic view of the nations of Ignas, which is often seen as a less-developed, war-ridden backwater by Aquvy's residents.
Because of this, the leadership of ARMS is distrustful but not hostile to Drifters. ARMS sees Drifters as a useful liability: talented Drifters would be good to recruit, but Drifters can also be dangerous rogue elements. ARMS will work with individual Drifters, especially in the field, but its leadership is wary -- and it is more than willing to bring them to heel. Particularly dangerous Drifters may be brought to heel preemptively.
Notes for OCs
- Yes, it's called ARMS and the artifact-machines are called ARMs. Irving knows this is confusing. If you think this makes him kind of an asshole, you don't know the half of it.
- If you want to tell stories about a character struggling with the expectations of authority, ARMS is a good place for that. Characters in ARMS are expected to protect the world, delve into ruins, and do other things Drifters do... while obeying the orders of Irving Vold Valeria and his field commanders. If you want your character to have problems with that, this is a good group for them. If you want your character to do whatever they want, whenever they want, this is not a good group for them.
- Most ARMS OCs are classified as Drifters. They have to take orders they dislike, but these orders are usually to save the world and sometimes in sketchy ways. Classifying an ARMS character as an Antagonist would require considerable justification.
- ARMS OCs are perceived as elite. Characters in ARMS have something special about them to the eyes of an old nobleman in Meria Boule. It may be due to having a unique ARM, a wealth of experience, a rare sword technique, or impressive magic. However, a random townsperson with no combat skill would not be recruited into ARMS. Characters join ARMS at the invitation of Lord Irving.