Tuesday, December 13, 2016

The Guilds of New Krypton

New Krypton Science Guild: Although scientists have worked in Kandor for years, the guild's present form dates back to the theft of the city by Brainiac. Seeking to preserve the Kryptonian way of life, the guild banded together all the scientists in Kandor. Possibly because Krypton was ruled by the Science Council before it was destroyed, the Science Guild has a lot of power in the city. Although detractors decry the Science Guild's approach to design as lacking in aesthetics, they have made New Krypton into a powerhouse. The Science Guild pays homage to Telle, the Kryptonian divinity of wisdom, but not so much that it interferes with their profession.

Artists Guild: Although people have worked in Kandor for years, the current version of the Artists Guild goes back to Brainiac's theft of the city. In an attempt to preserve the Kryptonian way of life, the guild system was strengthened, with the Artists Guild officially recognised as covering any and all who deal in art, design and creativity. The organizations headquarters, the Cal-La Opera House in Kandor, is always surrounded by performance artists.The Artists Guild is quite religious, seeking to do the work of Rao in all things. Artists also revere the divinity Lorra, who is responsible for beauty.

Labor Guild: Although people have labored in Kandor since it was founded, the current form of the Labor Guild goes back to the theft of the city by Brainiac. In an attempt to preseve Kryptonbian culture, all of the laborers in the city were banded together in the guild. The Labor guild does all the manual and menial tasks that keep the city running. They form the majority of Kandorian society, but do not have a seat on the council. Recently, a band of rebels under Tam-Or tried to publicize this fact, and Labor Council representation has been promised. The Labor Guild reveres Yuda, the Moon diety of Krypton.

Religious Guild: The Kryptonian Religious Guild is one of the major guild houses of the planet Krypton, albeit the one of least reknown. Devout members of the guild worshiped Rao, a deity who was analagous to Krypton's red sun (also named Rao). The heralds of Rao were the Kryptonian equivilant to angels with names such as Cythonna and Yuda. The guild was symbolized by the sigil of the Flamebird - a mythical creature that was half-phoenix and half-dragon. Priests of Rao garbed themselves in flowing dark robes and obscured their faces with glowing featurless masks. A Kryptonian named Thara Ak-Var was chosen to join the guild after a series of recurring dreams in which she visited upon by the spiritual essence of the Flamebird. She eventually left the guild to become the security chief for the New Kryptonian defense council, an adjunct division of the Kryptonian Military Guild. The original religious guild was destroyed when the planet Krypton exploded, but they, along with the other guild houses, re-established themselves on the planetoid known as New Krypton. The religious guild had very little impact on the early days of New Krypton's colonization. 

Military Guild: The Military Guild is one of the established and most important of the Kryptonian guild organizations. In the years when Krypton was a conquering race, the Kryptonian military was led by Admiral Dru-Zod the First who commanded entire fleets of ships, seeking out worlds ripe for conquest. In later years, the Kryptonian Defense Council was led by Zod's descendent, also named Dru-Zod who achieved the rank of General. General Zod gained prominence in the guild for his heroic, though futile, efforts to protect the city of Kandor from being appropriated by the alien conqueror, Brainiac. Zod lost credibility however when he defected from the Kryptonian Defense Council, along with his wife Ursa, after they had been instructed to arrest scientist Jor-El after the latter had made sensationalistic claims of Krypton's pending destruction. By siding with Jor-El, Zod, Ursa and the former scientist Non were arrested and tried for acts of sedition. They were sentenced to spend eternity in the Phantom Zone, a limbo realm where they would continue to exist as disembodied wraiths. Years later, the Earth-based Kryptonian hero Superman liberated the stolen city of Kandor from Brainiac's head ship. Restored to it's proper size on Earth, those who survived their home world's destruction now had a second chance at life. Following the murder of Kandorian leader Zor-El, his widow Alura re-established the military guild so that they could defend themselves against those whom they felt were a threat. Zod was pardoned for his crimes and he was freed from the Phantom Zone. Alura re-established his rank and placed him in command of the new military Guild. It was at this time that Alura launched the entire city from Earth taking a geosynchronous position on the opposite side of Earth's orbit. Superman was uncomfortable with the thought of Zod and his followers given free reign in a yellow-star system, so he flew to New Krypton to keep an eye on them. Alura told her nephew that if he were to remain on New Krypton, then he would be required to join one of the guild houses. Distressed by how things were being handled on this new world, Superman refused, so Alura placed him in the military guild under Zod's command. General Zod assigned Superman to take command of the Red Shard squadron. Red Shard - The Red Shard was a tactical response unit within the military guild charged with maintaining law enforcement and civil defense. Commanded by Kal-El (Superman), the Red Shard included his XO, Commander Asha Del-Nar, as well as several aspirants such as Sem-Re, Jeq-Vay and Kir Ta. Kal knew that he would have his hands full, particularly since many of the soldiers like Nar, could trace their military heritage back several generations. As it was though, Kal commanded their full respect and obedience -- save for Commander Gor, Zod's right-hand man, who perceived Kal-El's human compassion to be a weakness. Kal's first mission with the Red Shard proved to be a civic defense matter. Zod informed him that a herd of wild Thought-Beasts were threatening to destroy some of the planet's atmospheric generator plants. Zod would have just as soon destroyed the beasts, but Kal-El used this crisis as a good training exercise for the aspirants. He trained them how to use their newfound powers to herd the Thought-Beasts away from the critical zones without resorting to wholesale slaughter. While Zod appreciated Kal-El's intuitiveness, he still believed his methods to be lacking in efficiency. The Red Shard's next crisis took place immediately thereafter. Disgruntled members of New Krypton's Labor Guild took control of the Council building, taking a number of hostages including Alura. In response, Commander Gor rounded up thirty unassociated members of the Labor Guild and threatened to execute them unless Alura and the other elders were released. Kal-El bargained with General Zod to give him thirty minutes to find a peaceful resolution to the matter. Zod reluctantly agreed, but sent sharpshooters to the crisis area ready to take out the Labor Guild leaders should Kal's plan fail. Superman succeeded in striking an accord with the disgruntled guild party and they laid down their arms. Commander Gor however, ignored Zod's order to stand down and tried to assassinate guild leader Tam-Or. Fortunately, Kal-El's cousin Supergirl was present and deflected Commander Gor's shot. This caused Gor to lose face within the military guild and he attacked Kal-El as a result. Having years of experience in the use of his powers, as well as being trained in hand-to-hand combat by the likes of Batman, Superman easily defeated Gor and the tension between them grew even worse. In terms of law enforcement, the military guild also had to deal with their criminal element. Shortly following the release of Zod and the others from the Phantom Zone, the Zone itself collapsed, leaving several renegade Kryptonians free to do as they will. Thirteen known criminals were at large and General Zod gave instructions to several units on who they were and how to capture them. The most dangerous of the lot was a man named Val-Ty, aka, Greyline. Zod didn't feel that the Red Shard aspirants were disciplined enough to handle such a dangerous convict, so he left this task to one of his other units. As it was however, the Red Shard found themselves involved regardless. At this time, the Military Guild were providing several members of the Green Lantern Corps a tour of New Krypton when they came upon Greyline. Working together they quickly defeated him, but a dispute arose between matters of jurisdiction. Although Val-Ty was equally wanted by the Military Guild as well as the Guardians of the Universe, it was the Military Guild who maintained the right to prosecute him first. General Zod promised that after they were done with him, they would hand Val-Ty over to the Green Lanterns. Sleepers: In addition to the Red Shard and Black Zero units, the Kryptonian Military Guild also maintained an espionage division led by Zod's wife Ursa. This involved seeding the planet Earth with Kryptonian sleeper agents who took up human guises and insinuated themselves into positions of power. One of these agents was a man named Tor-An who had adopted the guise of industrialist David Carter. Two masked Kryptonian heroes, Thara Ak-Var and Lor-Zod (son of Zod and Ursa) assumed the aliases Flamebird and Nightwing and began hunting down and exposing these sleeper agents. This invariably brought them into conflict with Ursa whom they fought at Superman's abandoned Fortress of Solitude.

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