Man-at-Arms (5e Creature)
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Medium humanoid (human), any alignment
Senses passive Perception 10
Armed and Ready. Usually lords tend to care about the equipment of their warriors, at least in some relativity. Every Man-at-Arms can get a set of armour and a billhook at a cost of 20 gp or a set of armour and a longbow for 40 gp. When armed, their profile changes to Man-at-Arms, Variant.
Unprofessional Warriors. These men are usual peasants, thus they can be easily routed on the battlefield. In combat, if the leader of Men-at-Arms is killed or fallen unconscious, Men-at-Arms must succeed on a DC 15 Charisma saving throw. If succeeded they continue the fight, if failed, they try to flee as far as possible. If there is no character leading Men-at-Arms, make this check once their starting numbers are reduced to a half.
Peasant's Duty. Men-at-Arms have sworn to serve their lord, even in face of grave danger. In combat, if the leader of Men-at-Arms isn't killed or fallen unconscious, Men-at-Arms can use their Charisma saving throw instead of their own. If there is no character leading Men-at-Arms, ignore this feature.
Farming tools and instruments. Melee Weapon Attack: +2 to hit, reach 5 ft., one target. Hit: 4 (1d4 + 2) bludgeoning damage.
Peasants form the bulk of their lord's army. Some receive no training at all and are simply rounded up and pointed at the enemy. Men-at-Arms are the lucky ones. When they were paraded before their lord, he decided they had the potential to fight back and ordered that they be trained.
Each midsummer, commoners flock to their lord's castle to present their sons in the hope that they will be trained as men-at-arms. For a peasant to have a son accepted into the ranks of a liege's household is a great honour.
Still, the training and equipment that Men-at-Arms receive are not very good, and whilst they do receive some pay, it is far less than you might expect for risking your life. Most important, they are given no choice in the matter. As a result, it is not uncommon for Men-at-Arms to seize any chance to desert, and many deserters take up a life of adventure.
While not terribly strong or skilful, men-at-arms provide the knight with a body of troops with which he can safeguard his domain. When the knight is summoned away to war he will take many of these troops with him but will always leave enough behind to safeguard his castle and, if needs be, shelter the local villagers until he returns. In more peaceful times the men-at-arms perform routine tasks, watching the borders of the domain and patrolling the knight's lands.
“You shall fight at his Lordship’s command and his whim. You shall be better than you were, for you wield and wear the arms of his Excellency! And you shall die, if that sacrifice be demanded of you, but you die well for the cause of our Lord.”