The Night’s Watch is as old as the Wall it guards, some eight millennia in all. Within the Watch, specialised duties are divided into three orders, each of which has a different mission. Wise is the order of the Stewards. While the Rangers are the warriors and scouts, and the Builders are the masons, craftsmen, and carpenters who maintain what is left in the Watch’s care, the order of the Stewards are perhaps those who undertake the most important work. It is they who ensure that the Night’s Watch survives from day-to-day, and remember their history.
The Stewards are responsible for an assortment of critical functions. They hunt and farm, tend to the horses, milk the cows, churn butter, prepare animals for slaughter, bake bread, and cook all of the meals. They gather firewood and split logs. They make all of the clothing worn by the Night’s Watch. Lastly, they conduct trade with the south, bringing back to the Wall all of the supplies needed by the Night’s Watch.
None of these tasks are light or easy, though many go unremarked. Without the order of the Stewards, however, the Night’s Watch could not function. They are responsible for the daily care and well-being of all who stand on the Wall and guard against the forces that would destroy it. While their duties may seem humble, they require a good degree of skill and talent, appealing to many who might never be able to carry a sword or fight with any skill.
Among the Stewards, those with skill in sums or reading or writing might be given specialised tasks as well. Few enough are literate, and the Watch has a purpose for every man. Stewards also serve as attendants and squires for the high officers of the Watch, such as the Lord Commander. In short, the entire administration of the Night’s Watch is in the hands of the Stewards. They are also the ones who keep the Night’s Watch’s history, though much has been lost over the centuries.
Because the Stewards are responsible for so many critical tasks, it is fair to say that the other orders are dependent on them. Without their work in so many different fields, the Night’s Watch would not be able to function. It may seem that, on inspecting their work, the Stewards have little to do that would appeal to a member of the Night’s Watch. Their jobs have little glory in them — no wildlings to fight off or castles to build. Not everyone who becomes a Sworn Brother yearns to fight, though. Many smallfolk could dream of no better life than that of a Steward, where food is plentiful enough and beds and clothing are regularly in supply.
It is important to keep in mind that everyone is responsible for walking the Wall and taking up arms in defence of the Wall and all of Westeros. A Steward is still able to protect himself and the rest of the brotherhood on the Wall. Sometimes, a Steward surprises himself and the rest of the brothers with acts of sacrifice, bravery, and courage.
Those trained to be Stewards have all of the lore of the brotherhood at their disposal; this makes them invaluable during times of crisis. Also, their broad-based training gives them a host of skills that are critical to survival in the far north. Stewards have even been known to rise to the highest rank in the Night’s Watch: Lord Commander.
Examples of Night’s Watch Stewards: Samwell Tarly, Dareon, Jon Snow.
Night’s Watch Stewards gain 2 Hit Points + Constitution Modifier per Level
The Steward’s Class Skills (and the key Ability for each Skill) are: Appraise (Int), Bluff (Cha), Craft: Artisan (Dex), Craft: Fletcher (Int), Decipher Script (Int), Diplomacy (Cha), Gather Information (Cha), Handle Animal (Cha), Heal (Wis), Knowledge: Foreign Culture (Int), Knowledge: History (Int), Knowledge: Legends (Int), Knowledge: Local Area (Int), Knowledge: Nature (Int), Knowledge: Nobility (Int), Knowledge: Stewardship (Int), Knowledge: Warfare (Int), Listen (Wis), Perform (Cha), Search (Int), Sense Motive
At each Level, Night’s Watch Stewards get 7 + Int Modifier; humans gain +1 bonus
At each Level, Night’s Watch Stewards gain 4 + Cha Modifier.
Weapon and Armour Proficiency
Stewards are proficient with all simple weapons, and any two martial weapons. Stewards are also proficient with all light and medium armour and with shields.
As a member of the Night’s Watch, the Steward need never worry for food or shelter, and any basic equipment will be supplied by the Watch. He must abide by the oaths of the Night’s Watch, however, and give up any name, house, or other affiliation. His Wealth Rank is modified to Rank 0 (any ties are lost, and any debts erased), although the Watch provides him with his daily needs. His Social Status is modified to Rank 1, and he gains +5 Influence Points (Night’s Watch).
A veteran of the Night’s Watch is considered to have Social Status Rank 2, and +10 Influence Points (Night’s Watch). A high officer of the Night’s Watch is considered to have Social Status Rank 3, and +15 Influence Points (Night’s Watch). Normally, a brother’s Wealth Rank does not rise, although an experienced brother may gain access to better equipment, small luxuries, or specialised tools.
Night’s Watch Stewards can take the In Service Defect.
The Stewards are the administrators of the Night’s Watch and wield authority over the black brothers. At 2nd Level a Steward gains a +2 circumstance bonus to all Diplomacy and Intimidate checks made when dealing with other members of the Night’s Watch. This bonus increases by +2 every 2 Levels.
At 3rd Level, and every 2 Levels thereafter, the Steward has mastered a duty. He may choose one of the following Special Abilities to master, but each may only be chosen once (unless otherwise noted).
Rookery: A Steward may send messages by raven, allowing him to control the fastest form of communication in the Seven Kingdoms. He must make a Handle Animal check (DC 15) to successfully send a raven.
Research: Given time and access to a library or other source of information, a Steward can answer questions even if they go beyond his areas of expertise. The Steward can make a familiar Knowledge check on any subject as long as he is able to Research it for at least one hour. In addition, the Steward gains a +1 bonus on his roll for every hour of Research, up to a maximum bonus equal to his Intelligence Modifier. The first hour of Research does not grant a bonus if the Steward has no Ranks in a related Knowledge Skill.
Herald: The Steward gains a +4 bonus on all Knowledge: Nobility checks. Counselor: The Steward gains a +2 bonus on all Diplomacy and Sense Motive checks.
Raven Taming: The Steward gains a +8 bonus on Handle Animal checks made to train (DC 20) and send a raven, and can teach the birds simple and even unusual tasks without requiring a check. The Steward must have Rookery before he can learn Raven Taming.
Loremaster: A Steward may make a special Loremaster knowledge check with a bonus equal to his Steward Level + Intelligence Modifier to see whether he knows relevant information about local notable people, famous items, or noteworthy places. (If the Steward has 5 or more Ranks in an appropriate Knowledge, he gains a +2 bonus on this check).
A Steward may not Take 10 or 20 on this check; this sort of knowledge is essentially random.
At 4th Level, a Steward can co-ordinate other characters in a co-operative task by making a Charisma check (DC 15 + the number of characters commanded). This increases the bonus granted by the aid another action by an additional +2. This increase goes up to +4 at Level 6, and +6 at Level 8. Commanding other characters takes as long as the task they are attempting (minimum one full round).
Stewards must learn to defend the Wall, as must all brothers. Starting at 4th Level, Stewards gain a +1 that they must assign to either their Base Attack Bonus or to their Defence Bonus. The character’s Base Attack Bonus and Defence Bonus cannot be greater than his Class Level. They gain another +1 at each Level, which may be assigned to either attack or defence, but must be chosen when the Special Ability is gained.
For example, Tymen is a Steward. At 5th Level his BAB is +2 and his Defence Bonus is +2. Wall’s Defender gives him a +1, but he must decide whether it will always apply to attack or defence. He chooses defence, so now his BAB is +2 and his Defence Bonus is +3 (2 + 1). At 6th Level, Stewards have a BAB of +3 and a Defence Bonus of +3, which raises Tymen to BAB +3 and Defence +4 (3 + 1). In addition he gains another +1 that may be applied to attack or defence, and this happens at every Level.
At 5th Level, the Steward gains the Authority Feat (ignoring prerequisites). If the Steward already has selected this Feat, he may substitute another, although he must meet any prerequisites.