"I feel in them a sense of duty and commitment, yet I can feel nothing else. It is as if their duty is to an empty void." -Kuori
First: Borgia Ahmet
Fealty: The Order
Distinctions: Gray cloaks
A living rampart of steel and courage, the paladin stands against all enemies. They anchor the front lines, first to throw themselves in harm's way. With bold challenges, they defy the most fearsome of enemies and force them to reckon with the paladin. Their place is in the middle of the fray, testing their mettle in hand-to-hand combat.
Different deities have varying expectations of their paladins. Some deities favor those who excel in shielding their comrades from harm, while others demand vengeance from their champions. But the paladin might instead be an ardent paladin, one who sacrifices their own defense and even their health for greater offensive power. Or they are virtuous paladins, warriors of pure heart who can withstand the wiles and blights of their gods' enemies. They might follow one of these paths exclusively, or they might forge a course of their own.
A paladin cleaves to principles that guide them through life, shaping their worldview and forming their moral foundations. Even if they don't follow a code of behavior, they follow the precepts of their gods and work to live up to their faith's expectations. Yet the enemy never plays fair. Sometimes rules must be bent, or even broken, for the greater good.
No one knows this better than the gray guard. They have made careers of defying expectations and making the tough choices that their peers avoid. For them, the ends justify the means - even stealing, lying, or brutal interrogation. They do what they must to defeat the enemy. Their tactics don't make them popular with others in service to the gods. Many see gray guards as dangerous, almost as much of a threat as their enemies. They care not. The gray guard know that, deep down, they are feared, and perhaps even respected.
As they continue down this path, the gray guards may feel estranged from their gods, a disappointment to the ones for whom they have sacrificed so much. The blood staining their hands has somehow darkened their soul, although their abilities are unaffected. But they do what they must.