Spoiler Alert: the Imperial Guard does exactly what you'd expect. More news at 11.
The Imperial Guard:
I trust that all of you understand the purpose of the Imperial Guard: to protect the Emperor’s person, and to shield him from attack and unwanted attention. Some suggest that they failed, that the death of the Emperor proves that the Guard were unequal to their task.
I can assure you that this is not the case.
Through a secret alchemical process known only to the Guild of Alchemists, the Imperial Guard replaces some of their original body parts with those of Kameira. Some Guardsmen have patches armored nightwyrm hide grafted onto their skin, or their eyes substituted with those of a cloud eagle. The process is said to be long and unbearably painful, and it results in guardians with the appearance of monsters.
However, in the twelve hundred years that the Emperor reigned, not a single assassination attempt reached his person. We owe that fact solely to the power and extraordinary sensitivity of the Imperial Guard.
I know that many outside the Capital are wondering what the Guard are up to, now that they have no Emperor to guard. Well, in the words of their Guild Head, “We may no longer have an Emperor, but we have an Empire. That, we will preserve until the sun rises in the west.”
The resolve of a true patriot, gentle readers.
Guild Head: Jarelys Teach, a General in the Emperor’s military and Head of his Imperial Guard, does not at first strike you as an imposing woman. I have met her on many occasions, and found her to be singularly devoted to her job. Popular legend says that she swallowed the blood of a Nightwraith, thereby absorbing its powers, but that’s little more than speculation. It’s a matter of Imperial record that she carries Tyrfang, the Awakened blade used to execute the Emperor’s rivals over a thousand years ago.
Symbol: the Aurelian Shield (a shield bearing the sun-and-moon symbol of the Aurelian Empire)
"...but everything changed when the Fire Nation attacked."
All but the crumbs.
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