The Wands are the eyes and ears of TAROT. TAROT's intelligence professionals constantly collect information on the various law enforcement organizations, Superheroes, and even Supervillains around the world. When a field operation is planned, a Wand agent scouts out the location and reports on what he finds weeks before the first Sword even so much as buckles on his body armor. When TAROT wants to use a street gang as a middle man to distribute a new designer drug, its a Wand who makes contact with the gang's leaders.
Training for the Wands is as intense as that of the other Divisions, but by far is more concentrated and precise, and with the exception of the Researchers and Medics of the Cups Division, takes the longest amount of time. A graduate of the Wands school is the professional equal of any CIA, SVR, or Mossad field agent.
As with the other divisions, the Wands are ranked by their suit (from Ten of Wands, a recruit trainee, to Ace of Wands, the head of the entire division). Unlike the ranking among the Swords, an individual Wand's rank is more akin to a Civil Service Pay Grade level rather than a military rank. A Wand's rank indicates the level of his responsibility, not how many people he can order around.
Wands are most commonly recruited from the ranks of disgruntled intelligence professionals, former Cold War warhorses who have no place in "modern international relations", and disgraced law enforcement investigators. (The fall of the Communist Block was a windfall for the Wands Division, as many former KGB and GRU agents, as well as nearly 80% of Hungary's state security agents, "defected" to TAROT). Interestingly, a surprising number of successful American Wand agents were college-age gamer nerds when they were recruited.
A Wand agent can literally go years without putting on his Tarot uniform; his duties usually preclude showing off his connection to the organization or otherwise call for him to operate under a cover identity. On formal occasions at a base, a Wand wears the standard gray uniform with black accessories.
The current Ace of Wands is a small Belgian woman named Monique Thill. Mrs. Thill (her husband was killed during World War II and she never remarried) was in her youth the leader of a resistance cell in Belgium under the Nazis and was recruited to TAROT shortly after the war. Though she's now in her 80s, her mind is still as sharp as a knife-blade. At any given moment she can recite the current operational details of any four current intelligence ops. More frighteningly, despite her grandmotherly demeanor and kind treatment of "her boys and girls" (as she calls the Wands Division), she is capable of great ruthlessness and is capable of ordering the death of anyone, regardless of how innocent or how fond of them she is.
The Wand Division can be sub-divided into the following smaller groups:
Criminal Operations SpecialistEdit
Most people see TAROT as a monolithic organization bent on world conquest. Very few realize how much of TAROT's massive income comes from otherwise mundane crimes. Drug trafficking, protection rackets, smuggling, money laundering, prostitution, art and currency forgery... even auto theft... are Tarot's true bread and butter. Criminal Operations Specialists coordinate these activities. They are often called upon to act as "ambassadors" to rival criminal organizations when such a thing is called for (especially when TAROT is operating in Japan; the Yakuza are notably touchy when it comes to outsiders committing crimes in their territory, and open warfare isn't profitable for anyone). CrimeOps agents also recruit street gangs to work as middle men when TAROT doesn't want to make its involvement in a certain criminal enterprise obvious.
The Espionage Agent is TAROT's primary intelligence collector. Whether analyzing intercepted communications or bribing a vulnerable politician, the Espionage agent brings in the data TAROT needs to function on a day to day basic. In general, Espionage agents operate without the weapons or uniforms or other identifying gear used by other TAROT agents. When they do carry equipment, its always cleverly disguised as some innocent item.
The Surveillance Specialist is the master of old fashioned shoe-leather detective work. They are trained to make patient observation of one specific person or location and report back to his superiors everything he sees and hears. Surveillance Specialists are occasionally teamed with a Communications Specialist in the field.