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Fighters & Mercenaries

  These are warriors that have taken an oath to a liege lord. This oath is for life and the Hauscarl is bound by it as long as his Liege upholds his end of it. By law only Knights and nobles may have Hauscarls and this is strictly enforced.
  The Liege is obligated to provide decent food and secure and safe shelter for his man, an equipment allowance, a decent mount when needed, regular monthly pay sufficient to support the man's family, a weregild to be paid to the family in the event of the man's death in his Lord's service, proper medical care, a just and equal share in loot and booty, and fair treatment and decent leadership. (This means that the Lord can not order his man into a clearly hopeless fight). The Lord accepts these obligations for life. If you can't afford to support a Hauscarl and his family then you should hire mercenaries. In return the Hauscarl swears to lay down his life at his Lords behest and to die in defense of his property, family and honor. He will obey his Lord's commands in all things and place his Lord's interest before his own.
  The amount of the monthly allowance is negotiable and depends greatly on the quality of the man. The share in loot and booty need not be equal to the Lord's share but it must be equitable and equal to what any other Hauscarls are receiving. The Weregild owed by the Lord is generally three months to one years worth of pay. The amount varies depending on the wealth of the Lord, the importance of the Hauscarl and how the man met his end. Death while defending his Lords person always requires at least one years worth of pay.

Free Fighters:

  These are mercenaries pure and simple. They fill the rolls of bodyguards for wealthy merchants, caravan guards, etc. They are also employed by nobles who do not have the resources to support Hauscarls.
  Many of the free fighters, also called `money fighters' are Katallan in background. These are able to command a slightly higher price (typically 5%) because they are regarded as being more reliable than most other mercenaries.
  A mercenary supplies his own armor, weapons and horse. The employer must supply food, shelter and gold. (Silver is acceptable!). A mercenary gives his `Sword Oath' not to desert his employer for a better offer, to remain at his post until the contract expires, and not to surrender unless faced with clearly insurmountable odds. A mercenary that fails to honor his oath will find future employment difficult. However, should the employer ever become remiss in his obligations, either by failure to pay, supplying poor or inadequate rations etc., a mercenary is entirely justified in leaving him for a new employer, even if this is in the heat of battle!
  One important note. Mercenaries will always accept the surrender of other mercenaries and will not permit their brethren to be slaughtered.