Menders are an order of humans trained in magical arts. Their base is called Manaharr, built near Arberrang, the seat of the human king. Menders possess significant political power and they are generally well respected and 'healthily' feared, by both humans and Varl.
"Mending? Bah, call it what it is. We pluck at the threads of reality. Almost anyone can see them, if you know how to look." -Alfrun, The Banner Saga 3
Menders are unique in that they are able to "mend", or use magical abilities by reshaping reality. As the world itself is a sort of tapestry, the Menders have learned to control its individual "threads". While many menders are known for their ability to heal the wounded, they are also quite proficient in combat, having abilities unmatched by others.
Mending is only learned through years of practice, by constantly memorizing and practicing different patterns used to manipulate the world around them. Many Menders etch these patterns onto their tool of choice (usually a staff or spear) to more easily remember them. They can read Ingrid's runes, and thus are able to decipher the language of the gods.
Valka is the name used for some of the most powerful Menders that played a key-role in stopping Dredge invasions in past ages, banishing them in the far northern region of Valkajokull, beyond the Varl lands. According to Juno, Valka were the human weapon against Sundr, the 'champions' of the Dredge army. Unlike the Sundr, Valka are subject to natural death; however, they are able to pass on their knowledge and train new members, thus replenishing their order.
- Named Valka include: Gaukr (dead), Juno, Zefr, Dusi and Eyvind.
The male Valka are often prone to unstable behavior, with their leader Eyvind being an extreme case.
In the first part of The Banner Saga, two characters that belong to the Mender order are met: Juno and her apprentice, Eyvind. Eyvind is a playable character unit, who is able to use devastating lightning-arc attacks that hit multiple enemies. Juno is a support (unplayable) character of significant importance to the story, who possesses powerful mind-control abilities.
Two new Mender Heroes are met in the second part of The Banner Saga: Zefr and her apprentice, Nikels. Zefr is a Valka with the ability to buff ally unit stats and movement range. Nikels is still in training and possesses no special abilities apart from Mend. In the last chapter of the game, the player is also acquainted with Dusi, the head of the Mender Council in Manaharr. Alette may train to start becoming a Mender if she survives the first game.
Alfrun, while not officially a Mender, is met in the third part of The Banner Saga -- she has many of the same abilities menders do, having trained to be one when she was young. Eyvind is also revealed to be a former Valka, as well as their leader.