Rogues of Remballo
A Tale of Two Thieves Guilds
The Thieves’ Guild of Remballo is virtually an extension of the city government. Thieves are forbidden to act with violence, pickpockets and thieves all pay dues to the guild, and a cut is paid into the city coffers as a tax. Authorized burglaries are limited to a certain number, and the number of thieves allowed in the guild is also limited. Guild thieves are tried in the city courts (with a guild attorney), but if convicted they are sentenced not by the city but by the guild, which assesses monetary damages rather than hangings, brandings, and mutilation. On the other hand, the Thieves’ Guild actively hunts down freelance thieves, handing them over to the city or trying them in the Court of Thieves (which invariably hangs the freelancers they convict). As such, the Remballo Thieves’ Guild not only reduces crime in the city but ensures that it is nonviolent, and helps the city to police all other thefts.
The Thieves’ Guild of Manas is an altogether different animal. The City of Manas allows their Thieves’ Guild to remain in operation not because of a friendly relation but because any attempts to close it down result in an all-out crime wave, not only of theft but of murder and arson as well. The guild makes it very clear that war means war. Just as with the Remballo guild, the Manas guild hunts down freelance thieves in its territory and limits its numbers. Unlike the Remballo guild, the thieves of Manas are not barred from violence, and rather than paying the city’s government, they pay bribes to selected government officials. The city of Manas and its Thieves’ Guild have a much more adversarial relationship than the peaceful situation in Remballo, and the Manas guild has a correspondingly more-violent approach. Since they are already a technically illegal operation, the Manas guild dabbles in crimes other than thieving and fencing, getting into extortion, kidnapping, and even assassination, while the traditionalist Remballo guild absolutely forbids such expansions.