Symbol: A twisting road beneath a crescent moon
Discipline: A Walker of the Wayward Path may trade access to one martial discipline of her choice for access to the Veiled Moon discipline.
Oath: The Wayward Path isn’t terribly concerned about the conduct of its members, for the most part, with the exception of one area: their travelogue. When a Walker is inducted into the brotherhood, they’re given a travelogue of their own and asked to swear the following oath of membership.
“This book is a record of my travels. I will not falsify the things I’ve seen and done, though I might exaggerate for the sake of a good story. I won’t use this book or the power it gives me to intentionally endanger my fellow Walkers or anyone else, and if I fail in this, let the pages shrivel and die like my worthless honor.”
Allegiance Benefit: In addition to access to the Veiled Moon discipline (exchanging a discipline of their choice), Walkers of the Wayward Path gain the benefits of the Endurance feat while they maintain their membership and carry their travelogue on their person. They also gain ownership of one of the Wayward Path’s Travelogues, a minor artifact produced by their Grand Library.
Description This small, leather-bound book is about the size of a personal journal or notebook and can be easily carried in one hand. Though it is possible to use the Travelogue as a normal notebook (and it never seems to run out of pages, though it cannot be used to scribe spells or scrolls), in the hands of a Walker of the Wayward Path it gains magical qualities. Anything written in the travelogue is also recorded in the Grand Library, where the information is stored both as an ongoing narrative collected as a story of that Walker’s life and separated out and sorted into its various topics for research purposes. Additionally, once per day, the Walker may concentrate on the book as a swift action and gain the ability to hear and be heard by every other Walker using this function of the travelogue for 1 hour, regardless of distance or planar boundaries. This may not be broken down into smaller increments. At the GM’s discretion, this may offer a circumstance bonus to Intelligence-based skill checks if the Walker can ask an expert for advice via the travelogue. Finally, the travelogue acts as an activation key to all portals that lead to the Grand Library, regardless of their normal activation keys.
A Walker of the Wayward Path who violates her oath (see above) loses the benefits of the Endurance feat, as well as access to the additional functions of their travelogue beyond its limitless pages, until they atone by traveling to the Great Library and recording the details of their deception, as well as a formal apology. Repeat offenses are usually met with the deceptive ‘member’ being barred from the Grand Library and, possibly, killed by some of the less forgiving Walkers.
Destruction The travelogue may be destroyed by writing a blatant falsehood in it, then shelving it in the Grand Library amongst the rest of the collection.
The book comes unbound, then shrivels into dust before blowing away on a phantom wind.
Description: Less of a formal organization and more a club for enthusiasts, the Walkers of the Wayward Path are a martial tradition of travelers, explorers, knights-errant, wanderers, messengers, and other vagabonds that maintain common bonds of fellowship and trust. Any given Walker can induct anyone they like into the organization, provided they’re willing to swear the oath (recruitment can take a while at times, as the Walker doing the inviting must go to the Grand Library and request a travelogue for his candidate, whereupon the enchantments of the Library begin to produce one over the course of about a month). In practice the Walkers are somewhat picky about recruits, preferring to choose people who won’t spoil the friendly, cooperative atmosphere fostered by the travelogues and their common link to the Grand Library.
With little to unite them other than their love of travel, the Wayward Path doesn’t really do goals. However, they do often have some behaviors in common. Members of the Wayward Path are usually known to support roadside inns, shrines, and other houses of rest. They often take it upon themselves to clear the roads and travelways of monsters and other threats to common well-being, and sometimes join or found mercenary bands to do precisely that long-term. Walkers, while somewhat mistrusted as vagabond, are usually welcome in the places that they go and greeted with a warm meal and requests for news from afar.
The other connection that links the Wayward Path together is the Grand Library, an extradimensional space that they had constructed and enchanted at considerable collective expense. The Grand Library collects the biographies of the various Walkers as written in the travelogues, as well as the factual information that gets written down in those travelogues. Its sorceries write and sort the various pieces of information into a staggering collection of knowledge, which the Walkers and any guests they care to invite are free to access. Non-members are permitted access to the Grand Library for a modest 2 GP fee per day, which helps pay the small amounts of overhead still necessary after the layers of enchantments are done with their duties.
Common Tasks: Without any real long-term goals or, in point of fact, leadership, the Wayward Path doesn’t really assign tasks. However, there are opportunities for work with, and for, the organization. Walkers will send out calls for volunteers across the travelogues, offering payment or incentives to participate in their latest projects or a tough personal problem. Sometimes a call for rescue will arrive similarly, sent out from a Walker that managed to smuggle their travelogue into a tough situation that they need help getting back out of. Occasionally the Grand Library will broadcast a message requesting an exotic ingredient or reagent to refresh one of its enchantments; the keepers pay generously to any civic-minded Walker that takes the time out to help.
Available Services: The two most prevalent services offered by the Wayward Path to its members are access to the Grand Library and the travelogues, both of which can be a treasure trove of information, research, and conversation. Aside from that, however, the Wayward Path maintains wayhouses on many planes that give free room and board to members (non-members are invited to stay for a nominal fee) and is willing to help with legalities like travel papers or other documentation for members that can travel to the Grand Library for them. Walkers are usually quick to advise each other on where they can acquire unusual goods and services, and sell the same.
Path of War, © 2014, Dreamscarred Press.