Guardians are pretty straightforwards fellows, altogether. Defending and protecting other people, things, or realms against evil has been the task of brave men and women since Creation.
However, that doesn't mean we shouldn't take a look at what the Bible says. So here are some key verses that deal with protection or guardianship:
Psalm 68:5, "Father of the fatherless and protector of widows is God in his holy habitation."
Isaiah 31:5, "Like birds hovering, so the LORD of hosts will protect Jerusalem; He will protect and deliver it; He will spare and rescue it."
Proverbs 31:9, "Open your mouth, judge righteously, defend the rights of the poor and needy."
Nehemiah 4:8-9, "And they all plotted together to come and fight against Jerusalem and to cause confusion in it. And we prayed to our God and set a guard as a protection against them day and night."
Again, fairly straightforward, but interesting nonetheless. Now on to creating!
It's pretty easy to throw in a knight-in-shining-armor here, a ranger-hooded-and-cloaked there, right? Wrong! Your guardians should be a fundamental thread in the fabric of your story and your world - or else nonexistent. That way, each piece of the story will add something valuable and crucial to the framework and structure of your world.
Some other considerations:
1. What do they guard, defend, or protect? Are they like Tolkien's Rangers of the North, the Dunedain, who kept out evil creatures from the more civilized lands? Or do they share similarities to either the knights or the rangers from the Ranger's Apprentice series by John Flanagan? Perhaps they might guard a sacred object or natural wonder. It's yours to decide!
2. Structure of authority ~ how do they fit into the governmental structure of your world? Are they the "policemen" for a king? Also, what is their internal organization - each man for his own, or a council of leaders that directs the whole group of guardians, or something else entirely?
3. Quirks ~ like many of the beings in Faerie, guardians leave ample room for your own creativity. So don't be afraid to be different! Make your rangers have an awesome tattoo, or give each of them a pet hawk. Imagine and dream!
Of course, as always, there's so much more to explore - but that's for you to do!
|John Howe: Weathertop on the Horizon|