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Index Traitoris: The Scything Claw


Zephaniah Adriyen
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                       The Scything Claw

                        LIBER ASTARTES SWAP CHALLENGE

 

The Scything Claw are a Chapter of the Word Bearers who are currently roaming the northern edge of Imperial Space, near Elysia and Armageddon. They are a warband dedicated to none of the Dark Gods and all of them at once, with dedicated followers of all four of the major Gods present in their ranks. Their doctrines deviate from the standard used by the Word Bearers, and encourage members of the Chapter to dedicate themselves to one of the Dark Gods, of their choice. That said, the warband has an undeniably Slaaneshi bent, with their Coryphaus, a Daemon Prince, and their Dark Apostle, both dedicated to Slaanesh.

 

                                                                            = ORGANIZATION AND RECRUITMENT =

The Scything Claw are lead by their Council of Three: their Coryphaus, Daemon Prince Kharais, their Dark Apostle, Lord Vupulax, and their First Acolyte, Razael. The three command the warband as one; Kharais rarely comes onto the battlefield, preferring to manipulate from the shadows. Razael and Vupulax can often be seen fighting side by side, however, and lead most major assaults. The warband is only around three-hundred strong, though it is growing gradually. Kharais and Lord Vupulax both hail from the original Word Bearers Legion, whereas Razael actually hails from the Dark Angels, a former follower of Luther on Caliban, and bears their pre-Heresy colors. Razael is a relatively recent ally from only three thousand years past; Razael served alongside Black Legion Sorcerers for a time and learned the secrets to creating Rubricae, which was quite the attractive offer to Vupulax. To this day, they remain close allies and Razael never leaves the comfort of the Scything Claw's warships without a Rubric bodyguard.

 

The warband recruits from the young population of worlds they have converted over to their side of the Long War. To do this, a careful pattern of indoctrination and subliminal messaging is implanted into the highest levels of a Hive World's education systems for at least a generation, usually three or more. When the time is right, Vupulax' lieutenants command the world's population to rise against the unbelievers of the Imperial Cult. From this population, large numbers of Cultists and Traitor Guard are raised, and the young men are trained and transformed into Astartes before being pressed into service in accordance with their allegiance to a Chaos God of their choice; Tzeentchian aspirants will often form cabals of Sorcerers, or else become Rubricae; Khornates will receive the Berzerker surgeries and become fast-assaulting shock troops for the warband; Slaaneshi aspirants will receive surgeries to heighten their senses and often become equipped with sonic weaponry; Nurglites will be exposed to the brotherhood of existing Nurglites and allowed to accept Nurgle's gifts. It is seen as a promotion, nothing more, to be inducted into one of the four Cults.

 

                                                                         = HERALDRY AND HISTORY =

The Scything Claw wear deep, wine-red armor with silver trim, and bear their Legion's modern insignia. Many of them bear painted-on Marks of Chaos or other heraldry based on their allegiance, often on the pauldron opposite their Legion insignia; said insignia is often worn on the left pauldron, though many of their members choose to wear their Legion iconography on their right pauldron due to mutation or warping to their left shoulder.

 

The Scything Claw were formed from remnants of several Chapters of the Legion during the Scouring, as an alliance of convenience and mutual safety; over time, the bonds of brotherhood strengthened and the Chapter became a unified force. They now patrol and terrorize the galactic north, as well as spending much of their time inside the Eye of Terror. They are responsible for the conversion of the Hive World Nylax VI into a writhing Daemon World, as well as the indoctrination of the populace of that world into Chaos worshippers as detailed above.

 

                                                                 = TACTICS AND COMBAT DOCTRINES =

The warriors of the Scything Claw have been encouraged by their leaders to fight in whatever way they see fit, and to join with others to fight more efficiently in this way; Khornates are utilized as melee shock troops, Nurglites generally take up the multirole or fire support roles in battle, Tzeentchians are often entrusted with scouring hordes away with the cleansing flame of their god, and the Slaaneshi are often assigned to assassinate leaders and destroy entrenched foes. The Chapter as a whole prefers to hit hard and fast, leaving none alive, and eliminate leaders first and foremost, to break the enemy's morale.

Edited by Zephaniah Adriyen
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That's a good start. I'm already intrigued about this Warband.

Undivided by default, since each marine favours one God over the others - that's a neat idea. :happy.:

 

Do the Scything Claw's Chaos Marines organise into mono-god squads (for example, Squad A is all Khorne worshippers, Squad B is all Tzeentch worshipper), or is there a broad mix of various devotions in each squad?

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I'll be detailing specifics later, but I'm trying to keep Marks homogeneous within units (I've got an entire squad of converted Blightlords I'm running as Mark of Nurgle Chaos Terminators, for example) because it's tougher to model a squad with Tzeentch, Nurgle, Khorne AND Slaanesh worshippers alike.

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The name "Scything Claw" made me think of certain Tyranid combat forms' scything talons. As this warband seems to favor Slaanesh, does it have a deal with Fabius Bile regarding the products of research on Tyranids the warband captured, e.g., combat drugs extracted from xeno glands, transplanted scything talons, maybe even using the xenos as Daemonhosts?
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The name "Scything Claw" made me think of certain Tyranid combat forms' scything talons. As this warband seems to favor Slaanesh, does it have a deal with Fabius Bile regarding the products of research on Tyranids the warband captured, e.g., combat drugs extracted from xeno glands, transplanted scything talons, maybe even using the xenos as Daemonhosts?

These are such good ideas. I may wanna use them in the future.

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The name "Scything Claw" made me think of certain Tyranid combat forms' scything talons. As this warband seems to favor Slaanesh, does it have a deal with Fabius Bile regarding the products of research on Tyranids the warband captured, e.g., combat drugs extracted from xeno glands, transplanted scything talons, maybe even using the xenos as Daemonhosts?

These are such good ideas. I may wanna use them in the future.
Glad you like them. Feel free to use them.
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The name "Scything Claw" made me think of certain Tyranid combat forms' scything talons. As this warband seems to favor Slaanesh, does it have a deal with Fabius Bile regarding the products of research on Tyranids the warband captured, e.g., combat drugs extracted from xeno glands, transplanted scything talons, maybe even using the xenos as Daemonhosts?

These are such good ideas. I may wanna use them in the future.
Glad you like them. Feel free to use them.

 

I will say the name actually comes from the claws on Slaaneshi Daemons. You know, the crab claws, because it's a predominantly Slaaneshi warband.

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The additional details are welcome.

That said, the warband has an undeniably Slaaneshi bent, with their Coryphaus, a Daemon Prince, and their Dark Apostle, both dedicated to Slaanesh.

The Scything Claw are lead by their Council of Three: their Coryphaus, Daemon Prince Kharais, their Dark Apostle, Lord Vupulax, and their First Acolyte, Razael.

Is Razael dedicated to Chaos Undivided, or to Tzeentch? In the latter case, I'm assuming Razael is plotting to usurp Kharais and Vupulax as the Scything Claw's leader, so what countermeasures are in place to prevent the Fallen Angel from taking over?

 

Was Razael forced to swear a blood oath upon joining the Scything Claw, only to learn afterwards the sorcerous oath would reduce him to a Chaos Spawn if he- by action (personally shooting Kharais and/or Vupulax in the back) or inaction (doing nothing as someone else shoots them in the back)- allows Kharais and/or Vupulax to come to harm?

Razael served alongside Black Legion Sorcerers for a time and learned the secrets to creating Rubricae,

I'm assuming the Black Legion members who taught Razael the secrets to creating Rubricae, were former Thousand Sons sorcerers who collaborated with Ahriman in casting the Rubric, who fell out with Ahriman and joined the Black Legion after Magnus exiled them all from the Thousand Sons.

 

Did Razael actually steal the secrets from the former Thousand Sons sorcerers, or did he fall for the latters' plot-within-a-plot? Will he one day be shocked to learn the Rubricae he created, actually obey his former mentors instead of himself? Are Kharais and Vupulax aware of this possibility, and have the latter prepared their own plot-within-a-plot-within-a-plot to counter the former Thousand Sons?

Edited by Bjorn Firewalker
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More feedback to incorporate into my writing! Why aren't you the one doing a Word Bearers warband? :biggrin.:

The additional details are welcome.

That said, the warband has an undeniably Slaaneshi bent, with their Coryphaus, a Daemon Prince, and their Dark Apostle, both dedicated to Slaanesh.

The Scything Claw are lead by their Council of Three: their Coryphaus, Daemon Prince Kharais, their Dark Apostle, Lord Vupulax, and their First Acolyte, Razael.

Is Razael dedicated to Chaos Undivided, or to Tzeentch?

He's Tzeentchian, yeah. He's actually made from a Khorne Berzerker body (Mark of Khorne filed off), power pack and legs, a sword off of a Gravis Captain, a spare Rubric head, a holster and a Finecast Librarian arm with a big book on the tabletop.

 

In the latter case, I'm assuming Razael is plotting to usurp Kharais and Vupulax as the Scything Claw's leader, so what countermeasures are in place to prevent the Fallen Angel from taking over?

Was Razael forced to swear a blood oath upon joining the Scything Claw, only to learn afterwards the sorcerous oath would reduce him to a Chaos Spawn if he- by action (personally shooting Kharais and/or Vupulax in the back) or inaction (doing nothing as someone else shoots them in the back)- allows Kharais and/or Vupulax to come to harm?

Mm, let's go with the blood oath. Makes his attachment to Vupulax more reasonable in a Chaos setting.

 

 

Razael served alongside Black Legion Sorcerers for a time and learned the secrets to creating Rubricae,

I'm assuming the Black Legion members who taught Razael the secrets to creating Rubricae, were former Thousand Sons sorcerers who collaborated with Ahriman in casting the Rubric, who fell out with Ahriman and joined the Black Legion after Magnus exiled them all from the Thousand Sons.

Did Razael actually steal the secrets from the former Thousand Sons sorcerers, or did he fall for the latters' plot-within-a-plot?

Once again, gotta go with the former, just because it's more stable.

Edited by Zephaniah Adriyen
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This looks like a good foundation to a warband, I think there's a lot you can expand upon if you wish to for example there could be a bit of a tug of war/internal politics as while they're mostly undivided the ascendency of Slaanesh could be something the other elements don't particularly like. Maybe there's some agreements in place to check this, so everyone is kept happy?

 

There's also a great opportunity with a Fallen making himself at home, as this would mean that sooner or later they will get some very obsessive "fans" following them around :lol:

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