The Mire Bandits
"Travel light... the enemy has all you need."
Type of Organization
Type of Members
|Bandits, Wilderness Scouts, Thugs, Mercenaries, Outcasts|
|Number of Members||Estimated to be around 250|
|Demographics||Saurian 45%, Ogre 25%, Human 15%, Orcish, 5%, Grum 5%, Elvish 3%, Other 2%|
|Trackless Mire and the surrounding area|
|V'shang, ogre male bandit|
|Year Founded||2630 CY|
|Symbol||A saurian claw print.|
The Mire Bandits are a notorious group of outlaws that prowl the lands surrounding the vast swamp known as the Trackless Mire. This group has been known to venture out as far as 200 kilometers from the edges of that wetland, ambushing caravans on trails and striking at farms and villages in Arkalia, Corvenia and Jannerus. They have been very successful at this, though they have not yet mustered the courage to attack any major town or city.
The Mire Bandits are known for lightning quick attacks and then vanishing back into the swamp. Within the Mire, the Bandits are completely untrackable and very adept at stealthy movement. Local authorities have made several attempts to dislodge the villains from their sanctuary, but no camp has ever been found.
The Mire Bandits travel light and move quickly. They take what they need from their victims and make use of every last copper. As a result, their weapons, armor and tools are a hodgepodge of different types.
The earliest recorded mention of the term "bandits of the Trackless Mire" was in 2630 CY in "A Report of Criminal Activity in the Kingdom of Arkalia and it's Sovereign Lands" written by Dural Bashkel, First Mage and Advisor. It was a report ordered by King Hosric the First, the reigning king of Arkalia. At the time, the bandit group was a small brotherhood of thugs and outlaws who swore mock fealty to a self-proclaimed "Bandit King" by the name of Mazarr. Mazarr, a saurian, established some of the groups earliest traditions and practices. He ruled the early group for 15 years before dying in battle during a raid. His lieutenants fell to battling each other over control of the group. Eventually, Mazarr's first lieutenant, an ogre named Grall, took control. He ruled for a decade until he was felled in battle by an arrow. Tushark too over and ruled by six years before falling sick from a mysterious malady (many believe he was poisoned).
Many illustrious bandit leaders have led the group over the decades. Each has claimed the title "Bandit King" and each has ruled until their death. Over the last century, the group has grown in size and strength. Known for cunning exploits and daring raids, the infamy of the group has also grown. Once just a minor annoyance, the Mire Bandits, now numbering over 250 members, are taken as a serious threat by those nations that border the Trackless Mire.
The group is now led by a towering ogre named V'shang. He is famous for his terrible strength and for the enormous two-handed blade he wields named Bonebreaker.
The Mire Bandits feed on the fame and fear that their name inspires. Wealth is always the tangible target whenever a caravan, traveler or village is attacked, but V'shang often leaves a handful of survivors to spread the fame of his group.
The Mire Bandits make at least one attack per month and various other attacks of opportunity whenever a poorly defended caravan wanders too near the Swamp.
The Mire Bandits are fiercely independent and have no allies. They even wage war against other bandit groups. Several farmers in the region are bullied into a fearful cooperation with the Bandits. In exchange for immunity from bandit attacks, they surrender a portion of their crops to the bandits. Some unscrupulous locals have found it profitable to alert the bandits (via regular visits from them) to caravans traveling through the area and the activites of local law enforcers.
Anyone good in a fight or possessing useful skills is welcome to join the Mire Bandits. Sellswords and other mercenaries often find their way into the Mire Bandits. On occasion, a banished thief or a Corvenian mage may join up.
A large proportion of the Mire Bandits (almost half) are saurians. Many of these were recruited from saurian villages in the Trackless Mire.
While the Mire Bandits have no true oaths or codes, there is a ritual for new members which involves pit fighting four to one. New members are usually bludgeoned into unconsciousness. This sets their position in the pecking order and allows V'shang to size them up. The weak and unskilled are quickly weeded out with this ritual and killed. Those that survive are allowed to join. New members swear fealty to the "Bandit King" in a ceremony which mocks the knights and kings in civilized lands. This tradition dates back to Mazarr, the first bandit king.
This group is led by V'shang, a half ogre warrior whose battle prowess is legendary. He sways the group through a blend of bullying and charisma. However, his authority extends only so far as his blade. While he surrounds himself with loyal bodyguards, there have been attempts made on his life. V'shang is clever and careful, which is why he has managed to stay in charge for so long.
Beneath V'shang is a veritable pecking order of bullies. The strong dominate the weak. The food, loot, women and ale are divided up among the band based on this pecking order. Small subgroups form and dissolve within the group regularly.
This page last updated August 18, 2013 . Copyright 1990-2013 David M. Roomes.