The Grey Wardens, also referred to as the Grey Cloaks, were the most elite and feared of warriors in the Cremlevian Galaxy, and were dedicated to the destruction of the Jedi Order in the Cremlevian Galaxy. The centuries of warfare have left them the most powerful religious organization in the Cremlevian Galaxy. The Grey Wardens have fought the Jedi for centuries, well aware that the Jedi presence was fleeting, and that their enemy would never truly be defeated until the last of the Jedi Council was killed.
The Grey Wardens practiced the dark side of the Force, and had gathered ancient Sith teachings from across the galaxy. Wardens were fiercely devoted to their cause, to the point of fanaticism, and worshiped the dark side. The Grey Wardens spent centuries building their strength in the depths of unknown space, waiting for the exact moment to strike at their Jedi enemies.
On the dark side planets of Thedas, and Ferelden the Grey Wardens had established enormous temples dedicated to the worship of the dark side. These temples functioned much the same as the Jedi Temple, and were essentially Warden communities that were forbidden to others where the Grey Wardens trained, and taught their apprentices, and continued their own studies of the dark side of the Force. On other worlds, Wardens inhabited extensive catacombs where they perform religious ceremonies, and used as bases in their war against the Jedi.
The Grey Wardens had a hierarchy, very similar to that of the True Sith with ranks consisting of:
- Vicar - the ultimate high priest
- The Chosen Ones - administrators of large regions
- High Priests - administrators of large districts
- Venators - administrators of smaller districts
- Thulu Priests - administrators of major planets or moons
- Dark Wardens - the soldiers and regular members of the Grey Wardens
The Dark Wardens were the soldiers, and workers of the Grey Wardens. They controlled planetary cities, traveled as messengers, fought the Heathen Jedi, performed the sacrifices, and selected the sacrificial victims. Dark Wardens also kept the conquered peoples in line. Many Dark Wardens were also in the intelligence service of the Thedan Empire, and adopted the garb of the various peoples of the Republic and spied on them or the Jedi.
The Grey Wardens were enormously wealthy since taxation, tithing, on planets controlled by the Thedan Empire was heavy, and it all went to the coffers of the Grey Wardens.
Grey Wardens wore a robe similar to a black monk's robe. The hood was always kept up. A polished steel mask, which was a complete helmet, hinged and latched, was worn under the hood, and was regarded by the people as the mask of death. The Wardens frequently wore flak armor under their robes, and carried lightsabers, vibroblades, or blasters.
There were probably three to four million Grey Wardens at any one time, but they were scattered across the Thedan Empire.
The peoples conquered by the Thedan Empire and the Grey Wardens were fearful of their religion, and with good reason. The call to the Temple was a call to be sacrificed. These sacrifices were a sorrowful, and horrifying part of their lives. Their relationship to the Grey Wardens, and the Thedans was that of driven slaves. The Dark Wardens, who selected those to be sacrificed, were not above using their power for personal revenge, some Dark Wardens could even be bribed not to select a certain person to be sacrificed.
The religion enforced by the Grey Wardens was a religion based on fear. Theological offenses, which included striking or defying a Grey Warden, and practicing another religion, were punishable by death.
After a suitable invocation to the founder of the Grey Wardens by the Dark Warden, the victim was placed naked on the altar, sliced open, and the heart was removed, offered to the dark side and then burned on a brazier of hot coals on the altar. Great pits nearby were stoked up with huge fires, and the bodies were then burned in the pits. The altars were never washed and the combination of rotten blood and burned flesh made the temples of the Grey Wardens, which were large buildings of black stone, and inhabited by the Grey Wardens, stink like a recent battlefield.
The Vicar of the Grey Wardens, was the most powerful member of the Wardens, as well as being the leader of them. The Vicar was usually a wielder of the dark side of the force on par with the most powerful of Jedi masters, and usually was immortal.
Each Vicar was given a name of religious significance upon their ascendancy. The Vicar was selected by the Chosen Ones after the previous Vicar had died, or was overthrown. Vicars usually took a promising member of the Dark Wardens as their servants and pupils. Each Vicar knew the secrets of the force in more depth then the entire Jedi Council, and was more powerful than most force users. Vicars of the Grey Wardens were also able to create terrentatek and other foul creatures, using alchemy, to do his or her bidding.
The most powerful Vicars had even managed to discover wats to circumvent the restriction on the amount of force within a being. Vicars had such significant powers as being able to destroy their enemies by creating fire in the body of the victim, or creating a vibroblade in the victim's chest.
The Chosen Ones were the twelve council members who were also powerful force users, but not nearly as powerful as the Vicar. They possessed the ability to alter themselves, or shapeshift. Many Chosen Ones were able to expand by moving their molecules apart until they were ten times larger, and stronger, making them powerful warriors in battle. Most chosen Ones lives for nearly a thousand years.
All of the Grey Wardens dabbled in the dark side of the Force. Many were limited to simple Force powers, but most of the higher ranks have powers beyond imagining, and surpassing the powers of the Jedi. The Grey Wardens had gained control of many of the ancient Sith beasts, though not all. Wardens used these beasts as they needed. The Grey Wardens were used by the Thedan Empire as commanders, agents, police, and shock troops as needed.