Sable: Security Services
The Sable Security Services
Branches of the Security Services
The Sable security services are nominally a military organisation, although they do have a lot of civilian operatives. Based in a building affectionately known as The Maze, they are under the overall command of General Lord Graham of Oakwood (“Gray”), a personal friend of the King of long standing. The security forces have close links with various bodies within the Sable military: the Special Operations Executive (SOE) are occasionally called upon to offer military support in security service operations, as are the Sable Guard spotters. However, there is also a small military force, the White Guard, which provides specialist military services.
John Graham (“Gray”) is an old, old friend of King Robert’s. His particular forte is intelligence, although he is no fool in the counter-intelligence field either. His job is to coordinate the efforts of SIEXT and SIINT, making sure that they don’t tread on each other’s toes, and also that information gathered by both is forwarded to the relevant parties who need to know the information. He also also rumoured to handle a handful of agents and informers of his own, to keep his hand in, although he leaves the vast majority of such things to his subordinates.
He is a ritual mage and occultist of some skill, but is not thought to be Talented in the usual sense of the term. However, it is believed that the Magical Oversight Council is aware of this, and does not appear too concerned about his status.
The Sable Intelligence Service (SIS)
There is a split between internal and external security, much in the way of MI5 and MI6 in Britain, as follows:
SIINT (cf MI5)
SI Internal Security has responsibility for protecting the Kingdom of Sable, the Commonwealth realms, and other allies from hostile intelligence agents. SIINT are the counter-intelligence service – the spy catchers who make sure that information which could harm Sable does not fall into the hands of those which might use it against her.
“A”, Director, SIINT
“A”, the head of counter-intelligence – SIINT – for the Sable City State, is reputed to be a woman, although it is not known for certain if this is true. However, whoever s/he is, s/he does the job very well. S/he works in close concert with General Graham, and they have a productive working relationship. No description has ever been circulated of him/her.
SIEXT (cf MI6)
SI External Security is the service responsible for gathering intelligence on nations outside of the Kingdom. It is assumed that as well as the more normal field workers, there are SIEXT operatives within the diplomatic, commercial and military services, and that they are spread evenly across Sable’s allies and enemies. However, such assumptions have not, as yet, been specifically proven.
Brigadier-General Iain Duart, Director, SIEXT
Born in SY063, Iain Duart is a very experienced field intelligence officer. After graduating from Sandhurst, he was assigned to the Sable External Army, based on Cerdigion. After he proved himself to be an expert in small unit operations, he moved to the Black Panthers. During a sabotage operation against the Reich in SY095, he caught the eye of General Graham, who invited him to cross the floor and become a field agent with SIEXT. This started well, but hit something of a glitch when he was on Manira when the Brotherhood of the Martyr moved the Maniran Broken Pattern to New Oceania. On the other hand, when he made it to safety, the information he brought back was noteworthy.
He remained in the field for many years, becoming one of then-SIEXT commander, Lady Jenaya Cross’s best agents, but after one last close call too many in SY130, he stepped back from field operations and took up a position as Section Head: New Oceania at the Maze. He remained in that position until Lady Cross was reassigned to head the Murray security services in SY150, when he was promoted to Brigadier-General and became the Director of SIEXT. He co-ordinates closely with Lady Cross, as well as “A” and General Graham.
Reporting to Brigadier-General Duart are a number of Section Heads with responsibility for information gathering against the various adversaries of the Kingdom.
- Section Head: Greater and Outer Reich, Lt. Colonel George Wilson
- Section Head: Shadow Reich, Lt. Colonel Viktor Kerner
- Section Head: The Machine, Lt. Colonel Daphne Cooper, DMg (also in charge of co-ordination with the Technocracy intelligence servies)
- Section Head: New Oceania, Major Martin Brunswick, MMg (succeeded Iain Duart in SY150)
- Section Head: The Weimar Republik, Major Francis Christie
- Section Head: Argent, Major Sally Heatherington
“Q Division” – more properly the Field Equipment Development Unit – is a small team of mages and artists, headed by Dr Lucas Pryor, who are responsible for providing the equipment used by SIINT and SIEXT operatives in the field.
Pryor has a reputation as a mage with a grasp of Mech-Tech magic which is second to none. He graduated from Sable Mage College with honours about forty years ago, after which he was invited to teach at the Mage College after graduation. However, he chose instead to go into the Security Services which, if the rumours are true, offered him an unlimited budget to build “Q Division” from the ground up. However, he does occasionally give guest lectures at SMC, which are popular with students and teachers alike.
The White Guard
The White Guard is the specialist military force attached to the security services. It does not fall into the chain of command of the regular Sable forces. Its commander, Lt General Blake, reports solely to General Graham, who in turn reports only to King Robert as far as White Guard operations are concerned. The White Guard has never been known to operate either within Sable itself or the Commonwealth, and its only presence within the Kingdom of Sable itself is its Mother House, which is on the southern edge Sable City. Instead, White Guard detachments co-ordinate with the regular Sable forces out in Shadow.
Simon Blake is the younger brother of James, First Duke of Richmond. He was appointed as head of the White Guard about thirty years ago, after a distinguished career in first the Sable Guard and then the Royal Guard. He spends much of his time outside the Kingdom of Sable, coordinating the White Guard forces in the three External Military Regions (see Sable Military), although he sometimes attends the order’s Mother House in Sable City and works closely with General Graham.
Military Intelligence and the SOE
These two departments work closely together, with the SOE technically reporting to MI. Military Intelligence is mainly concerned with analysis of enemy troop movements, organisation and materiel, plus the location of enemy assets, whereas the Special Operations Executive usually runs the covert operations against targets identified by MI. There is also a sub-unit, MI9, which deals with running escape operations from behind Reich lines. The Sable Guard spotters are associated with Military Intelligence, given their purpose as forward observers.
Brigadier-General Adam Tyrrell, Director, Military Intelligence
With the enforced retirement of Captain Alexander Davids, at the beginning of May SY154, command of Sable Military Intelligence has fallen to Colonel Adam Tyrrell, and the Special Operations Executive has been given some measure of independence, under its new commander, Colonel Robert Villiers. After graduating from the Sable College of Military Magic, Tyrrell began his military career with the Royal Commonwealth Army, and fought on the front lines for a number of years, before his flair for observation and his ability to think outside the box were recognised by his superiors. He was invited to train with Military Intelligence about thirty-five years ago, and transferred to the Sable external forces, after which he became a very active officer. However, in SY142 he was badly injured on a mission, and was reassigned to the HQ of Military Intelligence as an analyst and case officer. While he misses the thrill of field work, he has proven himself very skilled in his new duties, and was an obvious choice to replace Captain Davids. His promotion to Brigadier-General became effective with his appointment as Head of Military Intelligence.
In appearance he looks to be about forty-five, and has salt and pepper brown hair and hazel eyes. He keeps himself as active, but still walks with a slight limp as a result of the injury which took him off the front lines.
Colonel Robert Villiers, Director, SOE
Colonel Villiers began his career with the Army Air Corps, after graduating from SCMM. He trained to be a pilot and saw service in a number of theatres. When the Royal Air Force was established as an independent organisation, he transferred across, and volunteered as one of the founding members of the Royal Observation Corps, who specialise in aerial reconnaissance and analysis. He was active in that role for about fifteen years, until he was shot down on a mission, and had to escape back to Sable lines. His experience, and the assistance from MI9 which made it possible to return home piqued his interest, and he transferred from the Air Force to Military Intelligence, working first with MI9, and then with the SOE itself. He worked closely with Alexander Davids, and has been effective commander of the SOE for about three years. However, with Davids’s retirement, that role has now been recognised formally. Villiers looks to be in his late-thirties. He has short blond hair, still cut in a military style, and keen blue eyes.