Following the First War of the Power, a consortium of merchants in the Five Kingdoms of the Northwest formed to deal with one of their most pressing problems. Trade in the post war era required guards to protect their caravans and storehouses. However, while mercenaries were not in short supply, very few of them could be considered trustworthy. So the merchants decided to form their own mercenary company to fill their needs. After hiring several former soldiers to serve as trainers, they began to vet recruits. Prospective members were tested not only physically, but also intellectually. In addition, they also had to have good moral character. After training, which included reading and writing as well as combat training, new members were gifted with a sword with a distinctive hilt as a badge of membership. As they received it, they would swear an oath.
To always defend the helpless
To oppose tyranny in all it’s forms
To be honorable in all my deeds
This was done less to promote these ideals and more for making sure the members of the Order were moral people who would be less likely to steal from their employers
Within a few years of it's founding, the company proved to be more successful than the merchant consortium expected it to be. As the Order began protected caravans beyond the borders of the Five Kingdoms, other merchants eventually began to hire them as guards. Guild houses were established along the trades routes, such as to Roccasone and the State of the Nortender Order. Knights of the Order of Nortender would hire the mercenaries to serve as support for various operations due to their good moral status, as well as the fact that they were more concerned with payment than the knights status as heretics.
The downfall of the Order of the Sword was tied to the Second War of the Power. Following the outbreak of the war, the Order was hired en masse by the Order of Nortender to serve as elite troops. The first major battle they took part in was the Battle of the Plains of Sargos, where they were sent to the front lines and received horrendous casualties. In the wake of the battle, only a handful of members were still alive, and ten years following the outbreak, there were none.