The Silent Blades
Many stories have been told of the mysterious order known as The Silent Blades: some claim they are murderers, assassins, thieves and spies hiding in the shadows, their faces shrouded in darkness and to some greater or lesser extent these statements are true but to understand the Silent Blades you must look at their history.
The Silent Blades were founded by Dakron when the world was very young (and the land of Serke Kemi even younger). This was before Dakron ascended to godhood and therefore was before the world witnessed its first murder. Therefore, obviously, they were not founded as an order of assassins. Dakron trained those who followed him to slay demons in the most efficient way possible using whatever tools were at their disposal: sword, knife, bow, poison, it didn’t matter as long as the demon lay dead at the end.
In a land where honour is extremely important, many of those selected as Silent Blades found this way of fighting an anathema but Dakron taught them to take honour from the success and efficiency of the kill rather than in some arbitrary set of rules as to how you should engage your enemy. He taught that demons have no honour so should be afforded none and this allayed many of the concerns held by those under his tutelage. However, the fledgling Silent Blades found themselves distrusted by other Serkanians, ostracised from society and their families cast out from the settlements. Added to this, the Silent Blades were considered such a threat that the demons of Serke Kemi would attempt to track them down and destroy them rather than wait for these men to attack from the shadows.
Sensing the threat to his order, Dakron ruled that the Silent Blades would keep their faces covered while acting as Silent Blades and should track down and destroy anyone who uncovered their identity. Only in this way would they and their families be safe and the Silent Blades could concentrate on their purpose.
In the years following Dakron’s ascension, the Silent Blades reputation for efficacy and expediency led to their employ in other matters, particularly those considered dishonourable (including the aforementioned assassination, theft and espionage) however they live by the code that honour is granted by efficient success of their mission, not by some arbitrary set of rules.
It is a misnomer that Silent Blades must always wear a mask, they do not. They understand that by wearing the mask those around them know what they are and treat them differently (although sometimes this can be an advantage). If a Silent Blade were to be breaking in to a man’s home in the night in order to end his life, they would wear a mask. However, if they intended to infiltrate a gathering, get close to their target and assassinate him alone then they would not. The essential warning that all Silent Blades have drummed into them in training is this: you only have one face. In other words, if someone finds out who you are and what you are then there are no second chances, your identity has been compromised and you put yourself, your friends, your family and the Order in jeopardy. They are urged to wear the mask at all times unless their objective cannot be completed while wearing it and in this way your anonymity is protected.
"And unconscious people always count as willing"
Tome of Magic 6.0