Just who are the Veteran Chapters? Well they’re ), part smugglers, part mercenaries, part organised crime and all bad…
Before the revolution the local nobles and their retainers (backed by Imperial forces) probably provided local law enforcement and protection against bandits etc; with them gone the towns probably try to make do with local (elected?) sheriffs and posses the presence of a friendly VC might be a useful survival factor.
This would be very much the ‘Charming’ model seen in Sons of Anarchy. The only alternative would be paramilitary police patrols sent out form the cities which would be in a rurales / gendarmerie type model of turn up, collect the taxes annoy the locals and bug out. Many villages might prefer VC protection to that of the (tax collecting) City authorities.
Another stream is that all the city states with their fluctuating politics will probably have different interpretations of the Holy Books. This means they will probably prescribe different things based on different favoured sections of scripture. That’s were the VCs come in smuggling contraband between city states, (Note on technology we’ll need cheap paper and printing for the saucy pictures.)
There is also an opportunity for casual banditry to support VC activities, and again like SoA they’ll get involved in legitimate businesses probably initially through finance (well loan sharking.) The supplying of justice might include revenge murders when the politically charged legal system fails to produce justice (for compensation of course.)
Finally what was the economy of the countryside – if we presume a fair amount of ranching (ah that’s were the horses have come from,) – with the ranches having been the nobility’s in the aftermath of the revolution they’ll probably be conflict over land.
This might feature subsistence farmers squatting on ranch land, city flunkies taking position of ranches after political manoeuvring, homesteaders with the whole sheep v cattle conflict and all these people will want muscle and the VCs are perfectly placed to provide it.
Over time VC’s will probably federate – much in the style of a Bike Gang patch over but likely through changing shield design. In the fullness of time they might before states with in a state but they might be a Meta plot.
Each Chapter will probably be headed by a Captain or President he’ll be aided by certain officers of the Chapter. Say a Master-at-Arms who acts as champion, strategist and no 2 depending on their abilities. Treasurer, master-of Horse might be some of the others. Will think a bit more on that.