Tales of the Bloodstone Lands
Order of the Golden Cup
The Order of the Golden Cup was a knightly order of paladins within the faith of Ilmater, the Unbroken God.
The Order of the Golden Cup is an armed company dedicated to stamping out the influence of devils, demons, yugoloths and other slavering fiends on the Material Plane. The paladin Arbinget Ivenay founded the Chalice a millennia ago with one goal: to recover the Chalice of Ilmater from Dispater’s Iron City of Dis. In the intervening ages the affiliation’s purpose has broadened to ending the influence of the Lower Planes in the world.
The symbol of the Order is a golden chalice with the bound crossed wrists of Ilmater on the cup. The Chalice is said to be an artifact of Ilmater which can heal any wound, illness or sickness, and free anyone drinking from it of all possessions, taints, geases and other means of control.
Many members of the Chalice are paladins, priests, and fighters. Mortality is high among the membership of this combative affiliation, and as such the Chalice is always looking to induct new members of sufficient piety.
The Order is not a vengeful organization, and freely allows members to leave its ranks. If a member departs due to falling from paladinhood, fiendish possession, or alignment change—or tries to covertly corrupt the Chalice from within after suffering one of these fates—the Unbroken Council dispatches an exorcism squad that is more inclined to smite first and ask for repentance by means of speak with dead much later.
The Order has priests and clerics on hand for its members who need healing, and provides healing potions to its members in good standing. The Order also provides missions and quests for its members. In addition, ranking members of the Order in Damara now have the ear of the King of that nation.
Members earn renown by undertaking quests and missions for the order, and routing out the influence of fiends in Faerun. They are aligned with the Gray College in Bloodstone City, as the two share very similar goals. However, the Order only focuses on fiendish activity, while the Gray College would like to thwart any extraplanar activity on Faerun.
Tarnished Initiate (1 Renown)
Defender of the Golden Cup (3 Renown)
Knight of the Golden Cup (10 Renown)
Unbroken Knight of the Golden Cup (25 Renown)
Unbroken Councilor of the Golden Cup (50 Renown)
Structure and Headquarters
The counterpart sect of the Order of the Golden Cup within Ilmater’s church were the Companions of the Noble Heart. They took somewhat opposing views, with the Golden Cup as the more aggressive order, the Companions as the more peaceful. Nevertheless, relations were friendly between them.
The Order is closely allied with the Companions of the Noble Heart, which devotes itself to the healing and defense of the innocent, the weak, the sick, and others who could not protect themselves. The Companions are generally peaceful and always try to help, and rarely do they seek out evil to slay. They were not pacifists, however, nor opposed to such actions, and did not hesitate to fight when confronted by evil. Still, members felt their role was focused more toward healing and protection than battle. They let their allies, such as the Order of the Golden Cup, hunt down evil doers while they protected the victims.
Around 1265 DR, Unbroken Bloirt Waelarn of the House of the Unbroken God in Keltar had denounced his fellow Ilmatari priests of the House of Holy Suffering in Mussum for refusing to relinquish the Tome of Torment, the holiest book of the faith, and declared them degenerate, mentally ill heretics. The Mussum priests and the Companions of the Noble Heart attacked Waelarn and his followers, labeling them “false clerics” and “subverted by evil”. An angry Waelarn summoned the Order of the Golden Cup, as well as the Holy Warriors of Suffering and Knights of the Bleeding Shield, to his side and vowed holy war against the “unclean ones of Mussum” and their allies. The war saw the violent clashes of Holy Hill Farm in 1266 DR and Bronsheir’s Charge and Weeping Rock in 1267 DR. Finally, Lord Sir Jargus Holenhond of the Golden Cup called an end to the bloodshed between true believers, insisted that the Tome of Torment be transferred to Keltar as planned, and blamed Bloirt Waelarn for the senseless violence, determining that he should be removed from office and sent into hermitage for the remainder of his years. The weary paladins accepted and carried out his judgment.
Circa 1342 DR, the mad priest Bloirt Waelarn returned to commit murder and stole the Tome of Torment. Sir Guth of Ormpetarr, a knight of the Order of the Golden Cup, caught Waelarn and challenged him to single combat, died, and—eventually—slew the rogue, murderous priest.
In the 1350s DR, Gareth Dragonsbane was an adventuring knight of the Order of the Golden Cup. In the Year of the Prince, 1357 DR, Gareth Dragonsbane was leader of a group of heroes who liberated the Bloodstone Lands of Damara and Vaasa, slew Zhengyi the Witch-King, stole (or destroyed) the Wand of Orcus, and slew an avatar of Tiamat in the Abyss, before finally returning to Damara to rebuild in the Year of the Serpent, 1359 DR. Part of this reconstruction effort included the building of the Damaran Gate, a fortress for Gareth’s branch of the Order of the Golden Cup. Gareth hoped to attract more paladins to his ranks, and the Golden Cup paladins formed the cornerstone of his army.
Golden Cup paladins are particularly common in Damara by 1372 DR.
Lord Sir Jargus Holenhond, who ended the holy war that fractured the church
Sir Guth of Ormpetarr, who rose from the dead.
Gareth Dragonsbane, paladin of Ilmater and king of Damara