Song of Ice and Fire
Varan Blood and Silver
The Varan Bloods, or more formally, The Varan Blood of the Bull, and the Silver of the Southern Seahorse are marked in the histories as two different orders, but they train together, study together, and fight together. The Silver were once known simply as the Silver of Lady Tyanna, but their name was changed to reflect their integration into Dorne and Oroca. They have kept many of their rituals and traditions from their origins as the personal house guard of Lady Tyanna of the Driftmark, but just as many have evolved to adapt to the culture and the styles of warfare in the south, notably, women serve in the Silver just as men.
When Lady Tyanna married into House Vara through Delgado The Ogre, she brought with her a full unit of her house guard, who remained with her and trained successors. Placement into the Silver is by tradition hereditary, but this is not enforced by law and there have been exceptions for loyal and skilled men-at-arms. To date, there have been no exceptions for smallfolk and every Silver who has served has been of noble blood. Their duties are fully identical to the Varan Bloods and by tradition the two serve in mixed units. The Silver colors are mostly silver, naturally, although black with turquoise and scarlet accents feature prominently.
The Bloods are an elite warrior order whose origins date back to the first lords of Oroca picking the best of the Toros cavalry unit to defend their families. This was codified into a set of military rules: To be considered a candidate for the Blood of the Bull, the petitioner must have served at least two leal years in the Toros, with distinction and no serious blemishes on his character. He, or she, must also be of noble blood by at least three generations and must be able to show that they are kin of the Varan bloodline, though this last restriction has been relaxed in recent times with the presumption that nearly all the Mardoxian nobility shares blood with the Varans if one goes back far enough into history. The Bloods colors are deep scarlet with some black shading. They sometimes wear silver and turquoise highlights to show their brotherhood with the Silver.