Signed, sealed, we deliver Oblivion
Rite of Passage
The Xen-far Those that are rank of Sargent or have fought in at least five battles participate in a ceremony that further binds them to Company. As part of the ceremony, the soldier’s main weapon is upgraded to a magical one. Upon each promotion or further five battles completed, the weapon is further upgraded.
The weapon bears the symbol of the Shadow Company (a silver scorpion on a black field). As part of the first ceremony, the soldier receives a tattoo of the SC symbol on their chest.
The weapon is tied to the individual soldier. In the hands of anyone else, it simply functions as a +1 sword, regardless of further enhancements.
The weapon also carries a curse. The ceremony tying the weapon to the soldier must be renewed every year. Failure to do so (say due to desertion) will result in the wielder being inflicted with a random disease that cannot be cured without the appropriate break enchantment/remove curse. Note that there is a ceremony if the soldier is mustered out – the weapon is given back and the curse is lifted.
No One Left Behind: Nirx Ka
From day one, recruits are drilled that they must not leave anyone behind and that they must not lose or leave their prime weapon behind. This builds strong camaraderie and will lead to the occasional heroics. It also ensures the valuable weapons remain with the Shadow Company.
Post Battle Rite: Drix-Tyre
At times, it feels like it is the Shadow Company versus the world. After a battle, it is a time to celebrate a victory (hopefully) and honor the fallen. As soon a practical after a battle, the Drix-Tyre is performed. The Captain and his key officers initiate a ceremony that centers on the Standard Bearer. The Standard glows an emerald green that extends out in a 10’ radius. Those that have participated in the Xen-far step forward, state their exploits in battle, and plunge their weapon into the glow. Sargents also state their Platoon, the platoon’s moto, and exploits as well. This is done platoon by platoon.
A huge feast and various traditions of victory and mourning follow.
Annals of Shadow
The Captain quickly established the tradition of capturing the Company’s’ exploits in writing. Both individuals and squads are highlighted for their contribution to the victory. Many in the Company view this as the written version (and thus immortalization of) the Drix-Tyre.
Readings of Valor
As the Endless War (as it was called by humans from the 20 year mark through the signing of the treaty) dragged on, the Captain ordered readings from the Annals before particularly tough battles. This became known as the Readings of Valor, as both individuals and squads were highlighted for their contributions to the victories past. For many, this is an inspiration to both fight with courage and perform heroic deeds in order to be immortalized in the Annals.