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Found 5 results

  1. "Men die, monsters die, only the glory of Heroes lives forever." - Talhonic proverb Early History: "Harken, Brothers; for I will sing you a tale of glories old, and heroes remembered!" - Kordran, Song-Brother of the White Hawks 4th Company, on the eve of the Battle of Kyband, 989.M40 http://www.bolterandchainsword.com/sm.php?b62c=@iakk7_hh8gh.i3rau@@@@@@@hUDtY@hbUc8@@..@_@@_@@@_@@_hI3Z8_hI3Z8@_@@@@_@@@hCmX3hcXvU@@@@@@_@@@@@@hcXvU@&grid=TRUE A typical Battle Brother of the White Hawks, sans adornments Born of the line of the Primarch Roboute Guilliman in the latter days of the Fifteenth Founding, the White Hawks began life as a crusading Chapter. Given a mandate to 'protect Imperial interests' and sent eastward, the Hawks found themselves taking part in a number of battles where their timely arrival tipped the scales in favour of Imperial victory. Parades and celebrations in the wake of the White Hawks and their battle companies became a common sight over the next several centuries, as the white-armoured marines fought against every foe they could find. Be it orks in murky jungles or sprawling caverns, or Chaos Space Marines on ashen deserts and airless moons, the White Hawks never refused a battle, and they were happy to bask in the praise of the Imperial citizens on the worlds that enjoyed their assistance. Though they achieved a respectable tally of victories, the Chapter didn't really come into its' own until the closing days of M37. A council of Inquisitors, with the blessing of the High Lords of Terra, selected the White Hawks to join a group of other Chapters in the permanent defence of a particularly perilous area of space called the Glastheim Rifts. This 'Silver Circle' of Space Marine Chapters would surround the Rifts and the worlds that bordered them, keeping the threat of xenos raiders out and penning the heretics within the Rifts in their self-appointed hiding place. The Inquisitors pressing the issue maintained that doing so would 'decisively protect Imperial interests in the area', and thus satisfy the Chapter's reason for creation. Grudgingly, the White Hawks deferred to the Inquisitors' demands. They felt certain that being assigned a homeworld would do little to interfere with their crusades. Thusly assigned to the south-east of the Glastheim Rifts, the White Hawks set about looking for suitable worlds to draw recruits from. One in particular stood out - the mountainous, feudal death world of Talhon. Humans there dwelt in ancient stone cities, their walls thick and their towers perpetually manned with archers. The reason for this was abundantly apparent; monsters roamed the wild lands all over the world. From the fearsome, dragon-like Goliandr in the mountains, to the armoured Barghrex and winged Astraptors in the forests, and innumerable others besides, voracious carnivores made up the bulk of the wildlife on Talhon. The people of Talhon were hardy and resilient, and trained from youth to fight and hunt these monsters, and in doing so, produced excellent potential recruits for the White Hawks. The Chapter set up a Fortress Monastery, dubbed the Hawk's Eye, atop a sturdy cliff in an isolated mountain range, and began inducting recruits as fast as they could find them. The people venerated their "sky warrior" guardians, recognizing them as scions of The Emperor and Angels of Death. But just as the Hawks left their mark on Talhon, so too would their new homeworld leave its' mark on the White Hawks. It is unknown if the Chapter's hypnoindoctrination procedures simply became flawed over time, or if the Chapter willingly adopted as much of Talhon's culture as it eventually did. Regardless, within a century of settling on Talhon, the White Hawks had taken on many of Talhon's superstitions and the traits common to it's native warriors. Notably, Talhonic warrior culture makes much ado of sagas and songs of ancient days and heroic battles, and its' adherents are typically equally at home boasting and bragging about their exploits in their homes and holds as well as stalking and battling their prey in the wilds. These traits have all bled into the Chapter over time, and a typical Battle Brother of the White Hawks will come across as brash, headstrong, boisterous and borderline arrogant in comparison to other Space Marines. Those that rise to leadership positions are not only the best fighters and tacticians in the Chapter's ranks, but also the ones with the most capability to keep the egos of their brothers in check. In addition to cultural adaptation, the physiology of Talhonic natives, when combined with the genetic augments that create a Space Marine, lends itself well to high levels of hardiness and stamina , even by the standards of Space Marines. While the warriors of many Space Marine Chapters are more than capable of fighting for days at a time without cease, reports of the White Hawks doing so with nary a sign of fatigue are not unheard of. The White Hawks themselves, previously used to adulation and celebration in the wake of their victories as errant crusaders, found they had little time to spare for either with the frequency and suddenness of enemy attacks on the worlds around the Rifts. The absence of this, coupled with the natural Talhonic love of sagas and songs concerning heroic deeds, left the Hawks somewhat unsatisfied with what they considered "guard duty" around the Rifts, and the Chapter has been known to send Battle Companies on distant crusades on several occasions, taking part in such diverse conflicts as the war in the Lauss Rift, or the Ensorcelled Stars Campaign. Combat is a constant around the Glastheim Rifts, and the systems around Talhon have come under increasingly violent threats as the centuries have gone on. In the final decades of M41, the White Hawks found themselves often battling isolated splinters of an unidentified Hive Fleet that seemed to lack any real focus, seemingly picking its' targets at random and attacking worlds without any kind of rational reason to do so. This Hive Fleet - dubbed Hive Fleet Goliandr by the Hawks - has grown to recognize the white-armoured Space Marines who keep attacking it, and the creatures under its' thrall now tend to fly into berserk rages when confronted by Space Marines in battle. Alongside this, Dark Eldar raids by the Kabal of the Shattered World have grown in frequency and daring over the last century, and a Chaos Warband calling themselves the [REDACTED (FOR THE MOMENT)] have made increasingly numerous sallies from the Glastheim Rifts to do battle with the White Hawks on a dozen worlds. In spite of constant war on many fronts, the White Hawks remain undaunted by their current, precarious situation. No matter the number of foes or the power they claim to wield, the White Hawks intend to weather the onslaught and come out the other side fighting, as they always have. Recent History: "You call this 'the age of nightmares and monsters'? We're the White Hawks! Don't you know what we do to nightmares and monsters?" - Captain Barodian Greystorm, in response to Lord Breiss of the Hatecrowned at the Battle of Kryndaia, 233.M41 The dawning years of the 42nd Millennium proved a difficult time for the White Hawks. From their position in the Glastheim Rifts, the entire Silver Circle bore witness to the distant creation of the Cicatrix Maledictum, an unnatural tear in space itself. Almost in concert with this horrifying event, uprisings began all over the Glastheim Rifts. The heretics dwelling in the Rifts sought to overthrow and destroy the Imperium's hold on the area, putting aside their own rivalries and squabbles for power in the face of finally destroying their hated foes. The White Hawks committed entirely to repelling this threat, deploying en masse on battlefields all over the Glastheim Rifts. It was during this time that the Indomitus Crusade arrived in the Rifts, bringing much needed reinforcements in the form of Primaris Space Marines and the means to create them. While the other Chapters of the Silver Circle - notably the Warminds and the Brotherhood of Crows - seamlessly integrated the newcomers into their ranks, the White Hawks were more than a little bitter about what they saw as 'replacements'. - Excerpt from 'Warsongs of Talhon, translated' Even the fiercest storms abate in the end When the enemy falters, we will still stand Raise your shields, sons of Talhon, be strong Let your swords sing in the gale, a deathsong Be resolute now, stand fast, endure 'Ere the storm breaks, let the Hawks fly once more! Indeed, Hawks who had trained, fought and bled to be the best they could be for the Imperium over the lastfew centuries were hardly delighted to see these 'New Brothers' presented as the Chapter's future. Only the accompanying news that the risen Primarch himself had ordained these reinforcements and seen fit to accommodate them in his own forces kept the White Hawks from shunning the Primaris marines entirely. It became commonplace in the following years for Non-Primaris (or 'First-Generation') Hawks to airily dismiss the accomplishments of their New Bothers, pinning any of their successes solely on their 'Cawl-given enhancements' rather than skill or daring, and denying any claims they truly shared the warrior spirit the Chapter is known for. Over time, however, the Primaris marines' stoic endurance of these taunts, their adherence to the Chapter's traditions, and their willingness to prove their worth in battle to their Older Brothers gradually won the grudging respect of many within the Chapter. In more recent times, enmity has given way to a more amicable rivalry. Both First-Generation and Primaris Marines strive to outperform each other in battle and make sport of the other's efforts at heroics, but without malice or bitterness. With the exception of slowly integrating the New Brothers into the Chapter, the coming of the Great Rift and the Indomitus Crusade overall did little to change the day-to-day life of the White Hawks. Though the heretics from within the Rifts were dealt a serious blow by the unexpected reinforcement of the Indomitus Crusade, the surviving traitors continue to scheme and weave insidious plots against the Imperium, striking wherever the capricious whims of their foul deities direct them to. Elsewhere, the myriad xeno threats that seek to prey on the worlds under the Hawks' watch muster their forces and prepare for war. The Kabal of the Shattered World used the distraction caused by the Rift-wide heretic uprisings to launch a raid on Talhon, burning a city to the ground and abducting several thousand men and women as prisoners. Hive Fleet Goliandr's splintered hordes wander closer to the Rifts, their maddened, howling ships disgorging swarm after swarm of feral, frenzied monsters on the worlds unfortunate enough to be in their paths. It is a time of great peril for all around the Glastheim Rifts, and surely only a matter of time before repercussions from events in the larger galaxy are felt keenly by the Chapters of the Silver Circle. But until then, the White Hawks endure. Homeworld: "On Macragge they train youths in schools to make soldiers of them. On Talhon, we teach our young to slay monsters, and make heroes out of them!" - Captain Ambrose the Wild, White Hawks 1st Company The world of Talhon is rugged and perilous in equal measure. The cities scattered across its' landmasses are bustling with life, safe behind the towering, thick stone walls that border them. The walls are buttressed, battlemented, reinforced with technology far beyond the level of the native humans there. In some places, the ruins of ancient gun emplacements can be seen, most if not all of the metal of which has long ago been taken and melted down for weapons or armour. Here and there, ancient buildings still stand, their original use long forgotten, now repurposed as shrines to The Emperor. Talhon's people are largely dedicated to the simple matter of survival in a world where nearly every creature outside of the cities is a deadly predator. Children are trained from infancy to not only survive monster attacks, but how to fight back against creatures many times their size and strength. Recruits for the Chapter must prove their mettle by successfully hunting deadly monsters as part of a group, monitored discreetly by members of the Tenth Company. Interestingly, the Chapter allows females an equal chance to participate in these trials - those that pass are inducted into the Chapter as serfs, and once fully grown are essentially granted the right to select any man on Talhon as their mate, to better increase the chances of the next generations producing viable recruits. The traditions of Talhon greatly influence the White Hawks. Perhaps the most obvious one is the taking of trophies from defeated enemies - this practice quickly became a rite of passage enacted by recruits who would take trophies from monsters they slew. Scales, pelts, horns or fangs - anything that could potentially channel the slain beast's power, hardiness or fury. These trophies were invariably added to the nascent marine's power armour upon graduation from Scout. Many veteran Marines boast multiple pelts or decorative scale armour attachments for their armour, taken from defeated beasts on many worlds. This gives the Chapter a savage, feral appearance quite unlike the rest of the Silver Circle. Coupled with this is an inherited tradition of placing great importance on the humble Combat Knife. Special hunter's knives are used by the warriors of Talhon to finish off 'worthy' enemies, as doing so is thought to amplify one's own warrior spirit. The White Hawks are known to execute defeated enemies with their knives for roughly the same reason, another custom that is looked upon as proof of the Hawks' primitive and uncivilised mindset. Beliefs: "My ancestors are smiling at me, traitor - can you say the same?" - Last words of Brother Ingrad, White Hawks 3rd Company, at the fall of Veir's Gate, 155.M38 A key element of the White Hawks' mindset is their admiration for heroes of long-gone days, such as the loyal Primarchs and those who fought beside them. These heroes are known across the length and breadth of the Imperium for their valour, and the Hawks seek to emulate the great warriors of olden days by fighting unceasingly against the enemies of mankind. So although they are quite well-known in the systems around the Glastheim Rifts, the White Hawks yearn to achieve the same level of prestige and respect afforded across the known galaxy to far more decorated and venerable Chapters, such as the Ultramarines, or the Imperial Fists. Though such a goal is certainly admirable, and the Hawks certainly pursue it with dedication, virtually everyone outside of the Chapter can see how utterly unattainable such lofty ideals are. For the White Hawks, however, this is simply considered the ultimate test of endurance - to withstand whatever the galaxy throws at them until their names are sung in admiration even in the halls of Macragge and Holy Terra. It is to be noted that even crushing defeats have little impact on the Chapter's overall psyche. The Third Company was utterly destroyed in early M38 by attempting to defeat the Nurgle Warband called the Hollow Knights in a war of attrition. When the Imperial Guard embarked on a victorious campaign against the traitors two years later, the Hawks were quick to laud the bravery of the Guard, but also to claim that the Hawks had successfully blunted most of the traitors' strength, enabling the victory. A battle in M41.989 on the desert moon of Akrilla against Hive Fleet Goliandr's mad hordes saw a similar result, the Sixth Company losing four fifths of its' strength in pitched battle with tyranid warriors after a failed decapitation strike on what was thought to be the enemy's leadership. The Hawks nevertheless touted this harrowing slaughter as a victory, albeit quietly. The White Hawks do, of course, have Librarians to record the Chapter's history and deeds. But whether born from their own obsession with proving themselves, or simply inherited from Talhonic traditions, the Chapter developed their own system of recording their victories and defeats in the form of songs and sagas. The marines most capable of composing suitable verses are given the unofficial rank of Song-Brother, and it is their duty not only to fight beside, but to observe the valour of their brothers in battle, that it may be recorded in verse and remembered until the day The Emperor lives again. It is common practice, on the eve of a great battle, for many sagas and songs to be recited, to better remind Battle-Brothers of the glories that may await them if they prove triumphant, or to remind them of past battles with hated enemies. On the subject of Librarians, the White Hawks are known to be openly wary of their psychically-gifted kin. Their superstitious nature makes them simply view psychic power as 'magic', and most non-psyker White Hawks simply regard their gifted brothers as dangerous, different, and something to be wary of. One lingering annoyance prevalent in the Chapter is that they are yet to be chosen to sire a successor Chapter, in spite of millennia of honourable service in the Imperium's name. Given that every other Chapter around the Glastheim Rifts is suffering from a degree of mutation in their geneseed, the Hawks assume the High Lords of Terra are simply being unnecessarily cautious about potential geneseed degradation. The White Hawks venerate both The Emperor and their Primarch, Roboute Guilliman, as ferocious and resolute warriors. To the Hawks, both Emperor and Primarch embodied the virtues of warrior-kings, unflinching in the face of danger and strong enough to dominate any battlefield they strode onto. The White Hawks seek the chance in every battle to demonstrate the inherited might of their great ancestors, felling great and powerful enemies and thus ensuring the defence of the realm. According to some rumours, the Primarch himself visited Drakon Primus, homeworld of the Brotherhood of Crows, whilst the White Hawks fought unnoticed all across the Glastheim Rifts. The notion that their own Primarch may have completely ignored the White Hawks is a thought that many Hawks struggle with. The current prevailing thought is simply that Guilliman, if he was truly at Drakon Primus, knew perfectly well that his own sons didn't need his presence to guarantee their victory. As a further note, while the homeworlds of three Chapters of the Silver Circle suffered direct attacks during the heretic uprisings after the 13th Black Crusade, none ventured near to Talhon. The White Hawks are quick to brag how the traitors were too scared to attack Talhon, but some of the more dour amongst the Chapter take the wildly unpopular view that even the Chapter's most hated adversaries don't consider them worthy of the attention. Battle Doctrines: "If you see your False Gods when you die, tell them to try sending their best after me next time!" - Captain Anaxam Five-Blades, White Hawks 4th Company, before slaying Dark Apostle Gexeras Vold during the First Prontera Crusade, 810.M39 Since their inception, the White Hawks have favoured bold, aggressive tactics. Many of their early victories involved them appearing to reinforce Imperial forces already in battle, and the White Hawks quickly learned the value that sudden reinforcements could have not only in the physical sense, but on both allied and enemy morale. To this end, the Hawks favour what some derisively call the "Big Entrance" approach to combat - deploying conspicuously via Drop Pod or Thunderhawk right into the thick of the battle, whenever the chance to do so arises. Furthermore, the Hawks have a long-standing tradition of bellowing challenges and taunts at enemies, even in the midst of bloody melee. This tradition is thought to have originated from further attempts to amplify their effects on morale - encouraging allies and scorning enemies in equal measure. Proudly following the teachings of their Primarch, the White Hawks will make use of diverse strategies and tactics, especially in the early stages of battles. A notable trend in the Chapter is for the White Hawks to focus their early strategies around taking out the largest and strongest enemies as soon as possible - whether to better illustrate their skill-at-arms or as another blow to an enemy's morale tends to vary from battle to battle. Another near-constant in the Hawks' methods of war is for hard-fought battles to eventually devolve into gruelling tests of endurance, mostly in close quarters combat. The White Hawks will gladly admit to making use of their prodigious vitality to simply outlast enemies in battle when more decisive tactics fail to find purchase. Though such tactics can prove costly in lives against suitably deadly or numerous foes, the White Hawks proudly point to a significant number of their victories that were earned through sheer unyielding stubbornness, knives in hands, long after ammunition had run out on both sides of the conflict. It is little surprise, then, that Assault Squads and Vanguard Veterans play key roles in the White Hawks' doctrines, sweeping across the battlefield and bringing the fight to the enemy no matter where they try to hide. Terminator Squads are often tasked with eliminating the strongest foes, their indomitable armour preserving them from all but the heaviest firepower, while Bike Squads and Predator tanks focus on isolating larger targets for the Terminators or other veterans to do their work. The inclusion of Primaris marines into their doctrines has had little overall effect on the methods of the White Hawks, although it is noted that even the Primaris marines carry knives into battle, much like their Older Brothers. Assault Intercessors, Outriders and Aggressors feature prominently in the battle doctrines of the Hawks, the latter often deployed via Repulsor to work with, or in place of, Terminator squads. Reivers join the Assault marines in the Hawks' mobile attack tactics, their affinity for disorienting and panicking enemies working well with the relentless charge of the older Hawks. Organisation: "Welcome to the Fourth Company, brother. If you're hungry enough for glory, then this is where your saga truly begins." - Sergeant Egram, White Hawks 4th Company The Chapter Symbol of the White Hawks. While largely adherent to the dictates of the Codex Astartes, there are several of differences in how the White Hawks apply their gene-father's teachings when compared with more traditional Chapters. While the Chapter boasts both a Veteran Company and a Scout Company, in practice both companies are virtually never fielded as a complete unit, instead operating in task forces alongside one of the Battle or Reserve Companies. Furthermore, in the traditions of Talhon, it is considered very unlucky to count something broken or intentionally divided alongside or before things that remain whole or intact. Given how much of their homeworld's traditions influence the Chapter, it is perhaps little surprise to see the White Hawks name their Veteran Company as the Ninth Company. The First Company is instead simply the first of four Battle Companies. Fifth to Eighth Companies act as Reserve Companies, in Codex-approved fashion, and the Scout Company remains the Tenth Company. Since the Codex originally made no provision for the inclusion of Primaris marines, the White Hawks simply incorporated the New Brothers into the Battle and Reserve Companies. The Veteran Ninth has only a handful of Primaris brothers in its' ranks; partly as a result of the Hawks' early dislike of the new marines, and partly as a result of comparative inexperience. Geneseed: "Our Primarch is famed for his wisdom, but we never forget that his hands, too, held bolter and blade." - Chaplain Braxas Ferredun, White Hawks 1st Company The White Hawks proudly trace their lineage to Roboute Guilliman, Primarch of the Ultramarines and author of the Codex Astartes. The Chapter's geneseed has remained stable in spite of the radiation from the Glastheim Rifts, which the White Hawks have long taken to symbolise their gene-father's approval of the Chapter and their deeds. Though the Chapter was slow to truly adopt the use of Primaris marines, the White Hawks have gradually committed more and more recruits to the path of the New Brothers, resulting in a roughly equal split between First-Generation and Primaris marines amongst new recruits. Battlecry: Call: "For The Emperor!" Response: "Let the Hawks fly!" This warcry is often repeated several times, with "For The Emperor" sometimes replaced on subsequent recitations with "For Talhon", or "For The Primarch", or other such cries. -=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-= EDIT: 23/12/2019 I can call this version 1.1 at this point, I think! Adjusted to give the Hawks roughly 7% more backbone when confronted by the Inquisition before taking Talhon as a homeworld. Hopefully it's a worthy read - any thoughts, comments, barely-contained-disgust or accusations of completely dropping the ball with the Hawks yet again are welcomed and encouraged, so... What d'you think?
  2. The Asperos Astra Chapter The Only Law Origins As the site of the violent birth of the Great Rift, the Eye of Terror has become a greater source of devastation for the Imperium than ever before, vomiting forth a new and endless tide of fiends and traitors. Forces in surrounding sectors have been drawn in close to quell the horrors pouring from the great warp sore. As much to maintain strength in those now less defended sectors as to bolster those forces providing a shield against the warp-born, two chapters of the Ultima Founding were sent to the region north of the Eye as reinforcements. One of these was the Asperos Astra, gene sons of [who, for real]. Both chapters vied for the opportunity to join the defense around the Eye, but Imperial resources in the area would only support one. The two chapters agreed to a simple, direct challenge between champions, the winner taking the place of greater glory in combating the tide from the Eye. The champion of the Asperos Astra...lost. Though it was an honorable contest, the sting of failure, of disgrace, was still felt throughout the chapter. They turned toward their new home with little enthusiasm and found comparatively quiet sectors. It seemed that the harrowing emergence of the Rift had drawn all the most significant players towards it. There were still threats to counter; scavengers and opportunists hoping to plunder from a distracted Imperium, but they were of little challenge for Astartes. Upon learning of an expedition destined for the unknowns of the Halo Stars, the Asperos saw an opportunity for real glory and challenges worthy of their station. The Explorators had made a general request for escorts through the barely navigable warp storms, noting that they expected to find human colonies on the other side, cut off and in need of the Emperors light, work for which the Mechanium had no interest. The Asperos answered the call. Homeworld Eludos City Precinct Fortress He said something was comin', Warden, whispered the investigator anxiously, Called it a war of liberation. The tower of ceramite grunted, stepping closer to the screen replaying the events at the outskirts. Liberation. Yessir. We werent sure what to make of it. The barons might've chafed at signin the treaty back then, but theres been no sign of any real malcontent since. But theres also no one else could cause a war, save the florans, and sure as dust on my boots he wasnt talkin to them. Dyou think a baron uprising could happen? Eventus stultorum magister, rumbled the Warden, eyes not moving from the screen. Uh, sir? They learned the foolishness of such notions for themselves. Whatever this pale preacher speaks of the Warden squinted as he watched the finesse with which the figure on the screen wielded its pistols, It comes from something else. The Cicatrix Maledictum has changed everything, shaken the Imperium to its core, shifted the balance of powers across the galaxy. At the behest of Roboute Guilliman, the Imperium pursues many new and unusual avenues for securing the future of mankind. Armies of curators and scribes have delved anew into records of the Imperiums past, searching for every viable new source of strength and lifeblood. One of the many potential leads that surfaced found its source not in an archive, but an ancient, derelict vessel found only a few years before the birth of the Great Rift by a Navy patrol in the far western reaches of Segmentum Obscurus. At first the ship was believed to have been regurgitated from the Eye of Terror, but a thorough, albeit cautious, investigation revealed otherwise. The ship had come from the north, from the Halo Stars. It bore records that, once translated, suggested that human colonies still survived in the region. The find prompted further investigation, and the accounts on the abandoned vessel were eventually matched with ancient records of a pair of major colonial expeditions made thousands of years ago to that unexplored wilderness. The fleets were noted as lost, their fates unknown, and the Halo Stars maintained their reputation as malevolent and remained unexplored. This vessels recovery has lit a spark of hope that the mysterious region could be an untapped resource for the Imperium. Among several measures taken, a new explorator fleet was dispatched to breach the frontier, led by two Explorators: Magos-Commodore Lorus Ferrarius and Archmagos Paritori Wyssian. The Asperos Astra, seeking glory and the opportunity to prove their worth, joined the expedition. Their first test came at the attempted passage into the Halo Stars. Using survey, scout, and exploration data centuries in gathering, a new passage was attempted through a long-standing gap known then as the Mouth of Lemhi. Mustering the fleet at the edge of the storms, and calling litanies in unison, they entered the warp. The journey was harrowing, and not without losses. The pressure exerted on the gellar fields within the fleet was extreme, and there were breaches, both among the explorator vessels and the astartes, breaches that invariably cost ships. The most tragic of these losses was the strike cruiser Reilios, with the entirety of the 6th company. Their final sounds of battle were recorded and preserved in a place of honor within the Chapters records. Those sacrifices proved worthwhile as, after months of journeying, the fleet emerged among the Halo Stars. The explorators immediately constructed a way station to begin modeling and charting their course through the warp, defining what would eventually become the Lemhi Pass, while the bulk of the fleet set out on its chartered task: drawing back the curtains on the Halo Stars. It was difficult going; at the first star the fleet reached, they found what would become a constant threat to Imperial interests in the region: the Nonaveridis. Sinewy, plant-like beings that dwell near stars and seem to grow their technology in a manner similar to the Eldar. In the time since, their bioweaponry has been determined to be somewhat less effective than that of the Tyranids, but the florans themselves demonstrate greater resilience and cunning than the Swarm. After a series of short, tense battles; each probing the others strength and regrouping to attack from another angle; a small fleet of well-worn Imperial ships of familiar but unusual design emerged from the warp and joined combat against the biofleet, turning the tide and forcing the florans to flee. With the fleet secure, the explorators and astartes established contact with the unfamiliar ships, and the human inhabitants of the Halo Stars, for the first time. The native humans led the explorators and their escort to a nearby world, a long-standing colony called Aurumilio. The planet had been home to humans for many thousands of years, and their oldest records loosely aligned with those pulled from the vessel that had originated the charter; they were, at least in part, descendants of that ancient mission. The world was barely developed, though; much of its population remained concentrated around a handful of space elevators connected to ramshackle orbital docks. The reason for the stagnation, according to the patchy history they maintained, was the loss of most of their supply ships and a not insignificant amount of the colonists during the crossing. The original fleet had become separated, survivors scattered to the void. Several of the worlds they had ended up on had eventually been able to reconnect, some as recently as in the last hundred years. It was never quite clear how many survived. While the explorators liaised with the natives to the extent that it concerned their own objectives, they had little interest in stalling their journey to bring these forgotten worlds thousands of years up to date technologically. They quickly made preparations to continue deeper into the reaches beyond, already referring to them as the Manifest Frontier, the most promising source for the future of the Imperium. The Asperos, on the other hand, viewed the protection of all the Frontiers humans as their responsibility. To honor their arrangement with the explorators, the 3rd company was tasked with continuing to accompany them. The remainder of the Chapter, after coordinating with the locals, began establishing itself on the planet and sending envoys to the other scattered worlds to which humanity had clung through those many centuries. In only a few decades, and outfitted with some appointments provided by the grateful explorators, the Asperos built a formidable monastery, Shanborn Fortress, named for a librarian who sacrificed himself on the journey to prevent a disastrous gellar field breach. With that, the Asperos Astra cemented their place in the Halo Stars and began their work in the Emperors name. Familiar Whispers Some years after establishing themselves in the Frontier, the members of the Asperos fleet began to receive garbled messages using the Chapters own verification codes. For the most part the message couldnt be translated or understood, but after several transmissions, a clue was discovered in some of them. The Lore Keepers, librarians of the Chapter, matched parts of the audio with recordings kept in the Chapters archives...recordings of the final moments of the 6th Company. The transmissions have persisted ever since, occasionally interrupting void communications and sometimes lasting for days at a time. For years, no source could identified, until during one patrol a flotilla of rangers encountered a derelict outlaw vessel bearing the livery of the 6th. The ship ignored hails, and made no response to their approach. When the scouts boarded it, they found the crew dead; shriveled and husk-like, mummified by the ships climate system. They appeared to have made attempts to escape the ship, despite the rangers finding no indication that its bulkheads had ever been sealed. More significantly, the ships cogitator was broadcasting the looping messages. The rangers reported explicitly that they disabled the transmissions and scuttled the ship by way of its reactor, and for a time the transmissions stopped. But not long after, they began again, and the ships of the Asperos Astra continue to receive them. Recruitment Humanity clings to only a handful of worlds in the Frontier, each of them for the most part wind-blown and barren. The more fertile worlds, including verdant jungle planets known as grove worlds, are invariably under the control of the Nonaveridis. Though the humans have harangued the florans for resources lacking on their own worlds, they have never had the strength to face them head on, and while the Nonaveridis have made frequent raids on the human worlds, they dont seem to consider the humans enough of a danger for an extermination. The conflict between them has produced hardy potential recruits, particularly the many orphans of battle. Some have taken gladly to the arrival of the Astartes among them, recognizing their potence as a ward against the xenos and against the lawless human elements that had enjoyed free reign for so long. Others, all too familiar with how easily those with power can take advantage of the weak, view the new arrivals with suspicion. In an effort to garnish support without spilling human blood, the Asperos only take recruits from the willing. While it hasnt displaced all suspicion, it has reduced some of the hostility from all but the most willful and obstinate detractors. The trials of the aspirants predominantly center around challenges of marksmanship and survival, tested in harsh conditions on a variety of different planets and moons. The tests pit recruits against natural threats as well as against cadres from the scout company, all before ever receiving any implanted organs. Over the course of implantation, neophytes fill escort roles for vital supplies moving between the Frontier colonies until they are deemed ready to become full battle brothers. Combat Doctrine Battle of Fort Robidoux The defenders could hear the continuous, discordant ringing, even over the crackling reports of rifles and thunderous boom of cannons. Whatever it was they were calling, the florans made sure it was heard. As beams of solar energy lanced overhead and pocked the forts walls, Sergeant Doreal rallied the defenders in his quarter, Come on, men! Whos done being reasonable with this xenos filth? Roars of affirmation answered him, and the fusillade redoubled. Ranged combat is the primary forte of the Asperos, punishing their enemies at a distance with fusillades of fire power of every caliber. Using a favorable, and ideally fortified, position, the Asperos stall advances and pin enemies with long range fire, while a hammer force rides in on their flanks to crush them against the anvil. While air support facilitates this approach, multiple encounters with floran spore mines have encouraged alternatives, and the preferred method of the Asperos is to use more personal approaches, primarily Inceptor squads, bikes, and powerful ranging beasts called Steda. The animals were originally found and domesticated on Aurumilio and now see use in numerous roles on several human worlds. Extremely sure footed, able to bear immense loads, and nearly unflinching in danger, evaluating their suitability as steeds was one of the first successful experiments the Asperos undertook when they arrived, granting forces isolated from mechanized support more flexibility on the field. When available, the Chapter prefers to use their complement of Apolus-pattern bikes, modified specifically to accommodate the differences in size and armor configuration among Primaris Astartes. This approach to battle works well for the Asperos in both pitched warfare and sieges, for which they have prepared the human worlds (and several in between) with sturdy fortress keeps to use as strongholds against the largest incursions. Primarily of simple, squat construction, these Chapter forts bristle with meticulously maintained weaponry prepared for any type of threat. Many have been raised on the edges of settlements, serving as shelter for the inhabitants during conflicts. Besides making formidable bastions for defense, they are vital staging grounds for planetary mobilizations. On the macro scale of the Frontier in general, the Chapter does not usually instigate conflicts, rarely having the numbers to make new conquests. Their priority is defending the holdings humanity currently possesses. Once drawn into battle, however, they will attack until their enemies are broken, making it clear that despite being relative newcomers to the region, they are not to be trifled with. On those occasions when the humans do seek to expand, or that the Explorators have designated a hostile world as a site of special interest, the Chapter is always willing to assist, but the prerogative to identify and claim new territory remains with the settlers themselves. Once a planet is brought under control, the Asperos set about fortifying it for its new inhabitants, often constructing a new keep from which to secure the planet. In recognition for their aid in crossing into the Halo Stars and their ongoing relationship, forces from the Explorators often supplement the Asperos in battle. Their various Mars-pattern weapons and armor, the Apolus bike in particular, perform remarkably well in the environs of the Frontier. Over the years a number of the more eccentric Tech-priests have taken up permanent stations on several of the human worlds and outposts to refine and maintain the armaments in use by both the Astartes and the settlers. It doesnt hurt matters that the weapons used by the humans are often relics of an age past that are almost as intriguing to the Mechanicus operatives as potential new tech. A less welcome auxiliary among the citizen defenders of the Frontier are the Dustwalkers, a killclade composed of a pair of Rustwalker Princeps ostensibly led by a Sicarian Infiltrator. While lethally efficient on the battlefield, the have a propensity for appearing casually in the vicinity where battle will take place days or weeks before it happens, and lingering afterwards to mutilate fallen enemies, making them particularly unsettling anomalies among the locals. Moreover, they dont appear to be beholden to anyone; no Tech-priests of any rank have asserted any claim over them or expressed any interest in corralling them. To their credit, they have proved invaluable on several occasions, usually by eliminating high-priority targets and allowing the Astartes and volunteer forces to mop up weakened and disorganized enemy lines. The Green Dawn The largest conflict that the Chapter has faced since resolving the barony wars began as an effort to colonize a new world. Several of the human worlds mustered a fleet to attempt the first full scale invasion of one of the grove worlds. Verdant beyond reckoning, the successful colonization of just one of these worlds would secure lifeblood resources, food, water, raw materials and more for the humans of the Frontier for ages to come. Upwards of three quarters of the Asperos Astra joined the invasion. The targeted world, called Araboros by the humans, was caught unawares. Only a token Nonaveridis fleet guarded the orbit of the world, which was expected given the minute scale of previous human raids on such worlds. The meager fleet was quickly smashed aside by the invasion forces, and landfall was made. Scorching landing sites with orbital weaponry, the Asperos led the way in securing footholds for the rest of the invasion, but the humans advance was almost immediately stalled. They became confined to these sites, as veritable walls of floran organisms that had previously ignored raiders and been believed to be in the same low-threat class as servitors swarmed the invaders, bodies choking the ground around the human fortifications as they assaulted in endless waves. The very world around them seemed to be straining to dislodge the would-be colonists. At each staging ground the human forces were pinned down, until Nonaveridis fleet reinforcements arrived, threatening to cut them off. The humans were forced to retreat, and their fleet limped away. At first it seemed that there would be no response. The florans gave no immediate pursuit, and though the returning humans braced themselves for weeks after, there was no sign of retaliation. Then, contact was lost with the planet Ulm. Before an investigation could be launched, the hammer fell. In a single, well-coordinated maneuver, Nonaveridis fleets of unprecedented size fell on the three worlds closest to both Ulm and Araboros, striking each planets largest population centers in the early morning on each world. Massive Lunaria carriers disgorged clouds of floret fighters that blotted out the daylight, while pod-dropped infantry stalks ran amok between the great seeking tentacles of titanic Mirabilis hulks. Though the casualties were astronomical, the citizen defenders of the Frontier were far from helpless, and held their own for days until Asperos strike forces and troops from neighboring planets arrived to relieve them. Two of the besieged worlds hosted keeps that the Astartes had established, both of which were instrumental in grinding down the enemys advance long enough for reinforcements to reach them. It was nearly a month of ceaseless battle before the Nonaveridis were finally dislodged. What the humans lacked in war machines found in the wider Imperium, they made up for in tenacity and ingenuity, traits that were pushed to their limits over the course of the campaign. The turning point only came when Archmagos Paritori Wyssians own ship and escort arrived, adding their strength to that of the humans and their Astartes protectors. After a fierce climax, the Nonaveridis were forced to withdraw. When Frontier forces were finally able to reach Ulm, they found the world no more than a cindered husk, burned of all life. In the decades since this conflict, both sides have markedly increased their border defenses, and skirmishes with the florans have become far more bitter than they have been in all the Frontiers history. Organization Since taking stewardship over the Frontier, the Asperos have restructured somewhat to accommodate for the needs of the region, and to prevent losses like that of the 6th Company. Warp storms are known to rise suddenly and blow through several sectors, greatly imperilling warp travel, making it preferable to risk smaller formations. Though the companies still exist on records, they each have functionally been split in half, with the exception of the still-replenishing 6th Company. Each of these troops is referred to as a corps. Half of the corps, commonly known as the Dust Corps, are responsible for manning the keeps. The other half, called the Sky Corps, operate as patrol forces, ranging across the wild space at the edges of human territory to ward off threats. They are supported in part by an informal navy of the outdated ships that the original colonists brought with them, along with a number of cruder vessels of the colonists own making, but the general lack of fleet power has led the Asperos to be more involved in ship combat than is typical of their kind. While assignment to a corps is permanent, marines spend regular duty tours serving in their counterpart corps to develop experience in every form of warfare in which the Chapter engages. These rotations, one to three years in duration, happen on a squad by squad basis. Each of the Dust Corps is under the day-to-day command of a Shore Reeve, effectively the equivalent of a captain among standard chapters, while the Sky Corps are led by Star Reeves. In joint operations, leadership is usually simply determined by seniority. Each corps is assigned a Warden of Souls, one of the brothers who composes the Chaplaincy, which in turn is led and administered by the Warden Vigilant. In rotating assignment to the corps are an unknown number of Lore Keepers of the Librarium. Their master, the Lore Seer, remains on Aurumilio, carefully tending the Chapters records and providing counsel to the leadership of the humans as they seek to plot the likely course of other colonization ships and lost tech that would help strengthen humanitys tenuous grip on the Frontier. Like the other companies, the scout company was also divided into two corps; the Dust Rangers and Sky Rangers. The rest of the Chapter relies heavily on intelligence from the Ranger corps to coordinate its efforts, and while they spend a great deal of time isolated on the furthest edges of the Frontier, they also have the most interaction with other corps as they relay their findings. More than mere scouts, the Rangers are figures of great repute and honor to their brothers, and the subject of awe and legend among the Frontiers citizens. At the Chapters head is the Marshal, a figure that has quickly entered into the mythos of the Frontiers citizens. The Marshal is unnamed, even to the other leaders within the Chapter, driven to embody his role as an avatar of the Emperors justice. Any flaws or weaknesses he fails to overcome cannot be reflected on his own name, but instead stain his very office, and so he must meet the highest standards and ideals of the Asperos Astra. One trait that has already become attributed to the Marshal is a certain restlessness, causing him to arrive unexpectedly in the midst of the most intense battles, or right before them. The Asperos are still led by their first Marshal, but their rites of succession make clear that only Reeves qualify as successors, the decision made by a council of Wardens and Lore Keepers. The chosen Reeve abandons his name, and is listed in Chapter records as killed in action, and given due honors. A Dark Return As the Asperos approached a century in the Frontier, the region was enjoying a greater degree of stability than they had ever known. To such hard bitten people as called the Frontier home, this was not a comfort. Indeed, on many worlds, there prevailed a sense of apprehension, a deep unease, a feeling that something was coming. As if to confirm their suspicions, word began to spread of a strange individual visiting outlying cities and settlements, proclaiming some sort of afterlife wherever he went. He spoke of no gods or doctrines, just this second life, and its imminent arrival. Some ignored it, dismissing the words as mad ravings. Others, more disconcerted, drove the stranger away from their settlements. Still others seemed to sense something dire in the message, and reported killing the herald outright, though no investigation of these instances ever seemed to produce a body. Regardless of the means by which this preacher departed, illness seemed to follow in his wake. Much of it escaped notice, being comparatively mild, but a few dozen citizens at each settlement were laid up with fever and coughs. A handful died, but most were on their feet again a few days later with no ill effects. Then they began to disappear. The issue came to the Asperos attention as several enforcers among the Arbites they had appointed, as well as a planetary baron, were counted among the missing. As preparations were being made to launch a thorough investigation, the vanished returned...as the shambling, withered front line of a Chaos warband the likes of which the people of Frontier had never seen. But the Asperos had. Though the armor was cracked, corroded, and dented and the banners threadbare and faded, there was no mistaking the 6th Company. New marks and symbols corrupted their original heraldry, marking them for all to see as servants of Nurgle. The horde that went before them seemed mindless, giving no reaction to pleading or surrender, or even to their own injuries. It was not uncommon on any of the worlds where they struck for citizens to recognize dead family and comrades among their attackers. And always dancing somewhere in the midst of the tide of undead was the preacher, killing with a gun in one hand, and raising a book in the other, proclaiming the arrival of the Pallid Procession, and the gift of the second life. Striking quickly, often with no apparent goal other than to kill and claim corpses, the Procession retreated back into the Empyrean to an unknown origin from which they have continued to raid the Frontier. Beliefs Argentalbun City, New Sarum Mm eheh, Frontier life is hard, is it not, brothers and sisters? croaked the rail thin stranger, gloved fingers clenching the fence in front of him, But dont despair, for as difficult as this life is, another awaits. A second life, free of worry, sorrow, or pain, heheh, he gesticulated wildly at the sky at this, What is it your, eheheh, Lawbringers say? The end is never the end, the last ride is never the last. Eheheh, truer than even they know. The second life is true liberation. In the shadow beneath the brim of his hat, the only thing they could make out was the cracked smile, which grew as his incessant chuckles grew into full throated laughter. His sermon seemingly at an end, he turned and walked out of the city, laughing all the while. Uneasy silence prevailed among the settlers in his wake, broken only by a handful of nervous coughs. Isolated as the Manifest Frontier has been for so many hundreds, thousands of years, the notion of the Imperium is somewhat distant to the citizens who live there. With the passage between the Halo Stars and the rest of the Imperium still tenuous at best, and the new era of war roiling along the Great Rift, coordinated efforts to reintegrate the Frontier will be a long time coming, and so their own continued struggle to survive will continue much the same as it has. The brothers of the Asperos Astra do not presume to rule; their innate predisposition to protecting humanity, together with a foundational belief that the Emperor intended his citizens to govern, rather than his super soldiers, has germinated a simple self-perception for the Chapter. They are stewards of humanity in the Frontier, securing the future its leaders aspire to. Their priority is warding away threats to the population, giving them the opportunity to do more than survive, but to flourish. Make no mistake, the Asperos offer counsel and occasional pointed guidance, as appropriate for those with the engineered mindset of warriors, but they generally avoid taking any hand in matters of politics or governance. The exception, and their primary contribution to society in the Frontier outside of war, is the establishment and enforcement of peace agreements between several of the regions dominant factions. Arriving in the Frontier they found a number of the colonized worlds in bloody gridlock over resources at the whim of bickering barons, some of whom laid claim to whole planets. While they fought among themselves, their worlds were still beset by outlaw raiders, floran encroachment, and occasional, but growing, Chaos activity. The Asperos united the barons with a minimal, but chillingly effective application of force, and since then, strictly enforce the rule of law with the assistance of the small independent groups that were once the local law. These, too, were unified into an evenly distributed force with a similar structure to the Adeptus Arbites. Many young citizens of the Frontier, whose families had been part of the barony conflicts for generations, were astonished at how easily the Astartes restored order, and praise for these Lawbringers and the prosperity they brought was instrumental in coaxing some of the more obstinate systems into the fold. The moniker has prevailed ever since, with most of the citizen population knowing the Chapter as the Lawbringers. Having seen how effective this word-of-mouth has been at unifying the citizenry, the Chapter has made no effort to correct the people. Young as they are, the Asperos Chapter cult is still slowly developing beyond the simple tenet of protecting their wards. Some of that development is naturally the result of recruiting Frontier natives into their ranks. One notion that has taken root is the value of experience, not only to the individual, but to all, and it is common at any gathering of Asperos brothers to hear the chatter of tales of glory, heroism, failure, and sacrifice being related, particularly directed at the youngest members of the company. Even the ordinary citizens of the Frontier who interface with the Chapter are often subjected to anecdotes from which lessons are supposed to be learned. A common saying from the elder to the younger is where the ceramite is scarred, there is a story worth telling. With no other significant Imperial forces in the Frontier besides the often-out-of-reach explorators, the Asperos has also developed a keen conviction for the value of every brothers life. Self-sacrifice, laudable though it is, is something seen only as a very last resort, for a dead marine is one who can no longer defend his Emperors people. There are occasional noble last stands, but they are always born of absolute necessity, and a fighting retreat that ensures brothers will live to fight again is much preferred. This belief is extended on to those the Asperos protect as well, who the Astartes view as seeds from which the Imperiums presence in the Halo Stars will grow. This particular idea serves as a strong motivator for the Chapter; assured that the Frontier will one day join the larger Imperium, they want to know that they have something of consequence to show for their time spent fighting and laboring there. While the Mechanicus and its Explorators are sure that the answer to the Imperiums ills will come in the form of lost tech, the Asperos believes it will come from its people. The most commendable traits to strive for among the Asperos are precision and decisiveness, both on and off the battlefield, and they dedicate much of their time outside of combat to refining marksmanship. Particularly impressive feats of accuracy; targets hit at great distance, ricocheted rounds, shots through the slightest opening, are all stories often shared to extol the value of finesse and practice. Among the most well-known and revered of these tales comes from a battlefield on the planet Codai, shortly following the war of the Green Dawn: For years after, floran raids came with terrible force, each new attack feeling like the threat of another Ulm. That was, until Codai. A floran assault began while the 5th Dust Corps was enroute to its new destination on a nearby world. Diverting to defend Codai, the 5th made planetfall and took charge of the militia forces. During the fighting, Veteran Sergeant Wylam Tero broke from formation on his Steda, and rode out among the flailing limbs of the Mirabilis bio-titan leading the floran attack. As the creature discharged a solar blast at the lines of the defenders, Tero fired a single shot into its underside. Striking an opening that couldnt have been larger than a handspan on a moving target over a hundred meters above him, Teros bolt entered a biological vent opened only briefly by the creatures attack and detonated the highly reactive organ from which the floran drew its energy. The Mirabilis annihilated itself and a third of its supporting force as Wylam Tero rode free of the blast. This was the first and only known instance of such a precise engine kill on one of these creatures, and it led to a precipitous decline in floran raids and secured Wild Wylam a place in legend both within the Chapter and without. A keep bearing his name is now present on Codai. The revelation of the 6th companys fate has left an indelible mark on the Chapters psyche. Their honors have been stricken from the Chapters records, and there are always Lore Keepers tasked with trying to locate this Pallid Procession and its next target. The Wardens of the Asperos now work closely with their brethren to eradicate the seed of doubt that has been planted in each of their hearts. Whether they are willing to acknowledge it openly or not, each battle brother among the Asperos has since asked himself if he would have submitted to the Ruinous Powers and turned against everything he stood for, and what could have been worth such a price. To some, it would seem better not to know, while to others, the why and how of the 6th Companys fall are of vital importance to answer. The existential threat of the Pallid Procession extends past the Chapter and on to their wards, as well; the Processions disturbing preference for using the peoples dead against them has led to efforts by the citizens and the Astartes to secure their fallen against the corrupting influence of the heretics. While settlements are defended as would be expected, the great grave fields that the Frontier citizens have maintained throughout their history have now also begun to be heavily fortified, as much to keep the dead in as to keep them out. The grave fortresses remain the only predictable targets for the Processions attacks, and the battles fought around them have been among the fiercest. This never ending conflict has only reinforced the value of life within the Chapter and the citizenry of the Frontier. Gene-seed The Asperos Astra are gene-sons of Guilliman, and have dependably stable genetic material. Until a more reliable route through the Lemhi Pass is established, they have secured their gene-seed tithes in Shanborn Fortress. Instead of sending the tithes, emissaries are dispatched to update Mars on their circumstances. Until now, the Mechanicus has accepted this substitute, encouraged by further endorsement from the Frontier Explorators. With each journey, most successful, some not, the pass becomes better understood and safer to navigate, and soon the Chapter should be able to dutifully submit its tithes, as well as receive extra gene-seed in the event of a disaster. War Cry Taken up as a chant: Dust, blood, guts, and glory! Chapter Tactic Deadeye Prowess Masters of ranged combat, the Lawbringers are frighteningly accurate marksman, seeming to account for every variable with each placed shot. Enemies who thought themselves safely out of range often pay the ultimate price for underestimating the accuracy of Asperos battle brothers. Increase the range of all ranged weapons by 3" and reroll to-hit rolls of 1 for any bolter weapons. Battle Brother Arnton of the Sixth Company, painted by Ace Debonair
  3. Hello there, this is the beginning of (hopefully) one of two complete Index articles featuring my newest (of too many) chapter ideas: the Ashen Blades I'll start off with the key facts I already got, expanding on them in time. The other chapter's going to be the Night Owls but I'll cover them in their own seperate thread. Now back to the Ashen Blades. By the way, the name is not fixed yet. I'm still open for suggestions but I needed to give the chapter a work title. One of them will also play a part in my BL submission of these years open window, so there might be some fanfic fluff coming in, as well. The first idea behind the Ashen Blades were that of a Pre-Lorgar themed Primaris successor. One that hunts down cults and such, burning all heretic lore which is not compliant to the Imperial Truth (which itself is a lie). While writing this down, they evolved into a lore protecting chapter, tasked to help Guiliman in restore the imperial past while hunting heretics, traitors and the likes. I would like to go back to this idea at a later time, maybe after finishing the basement to work upon. Before starting, I want to thank you (the entire LIBER community) for inspiring me to get something done. There were plenty of realy cool and unique concepts uploaded in the last weeks! Here's hope that my humble ideas may one day be as epic as yours. Now, let's have a look on the Ashen Blades, shall we? Chapter Name: Ashen Blades Founding: Ultima Founding Geneseed: Salamanders Chapter Master: Gardion Flameheart Homeworld: Vulkar Combat Doctrine: Siege Warfare & Liberation and Defensive Operations (chapter) + Suppression of Ideological Revolt & Lore Culling (Vanguard) Battlecry: Sons of Vulkan!" "To arms!" Colours: Various tones of grey and red Chapter Badge: A sword in front of a flame History The Ashen Blades is a Loyalist Codex Astartes-compliant Space Marine Chapter born of the Ultima Founding and a Successor Chapter of the Salamanders, composed entirely of Primaris Space Marines. The Ashen Blades were amongst the first of the Primaris Chapters created in the Ultima Founding. The Ashen Blades' homeworld is Vulkar, located in the northern half of the Ultima Segmentum. Though their battle record is still growing, they have already established themselves as vital supporters of Lord Regent Dante of the Blood Angels along other newly founded chapters like the Ebonspears or Night Owls. Furthermore, have they been chosen to follow unofficial orders given to them by Lord Guiliman himself. The Ashen Blades Ashen Blades have gained a reputation as caring and utterly focused warriors who rarely back down if civilian lives are at risk. Following the teachings of the Promethean Cult, they stay true to the virtues of their genefather Vulkan. Self-sacrifice, loyalty and self-reliance are greatly emphasized by all their battle brothers and further, by the people of their newly given homeworldVulkar. Once brought into compliance by the eighteenth Legion under Vulkan himself, the citizens of this icy death world pledged their fealty to his recently awoken sons. During the Indomitus Crusade did the Ashen Blades specialize in siege warfare and liberation operations, risking their lives to bring lost world into compliance once more. For them, a barren world, which requires repopulation is a lost cause. Each life saved by them will bolster the ranks of the imperial forces within the Imperium Nihilus. Besides saving as many lives and worlds as possible, do their Vanguard forces have a quite different agenda: securing historical records. While leading theIndomitus Crusade, Lord RobouteGuiliman established a new order of mortals, whose goal was to reconstruct an official history record of the Imperium, mimicking the Remembrancers he once knew during the golden age of the Imperium. With the Imperium Nihilus still being in an even worse state of constant war than the secure southern Imperium, Guiliman decided to dedicate an entire chapter to this cause. Known for their dedication and humanitarian beliefs, Guiliman thought the sons of his brother Vulkan to be the perfect candidates to gather, validate and secure those records for him. Deep within their new Fortress Monastery had the Ashen Blades begun to create a vast archive of different kinds of records. Not only do they search for ancient records, but also for rumours and hints about seemingly lost realms of the Imperium Nihilus. Aside from their battle proneness and secret agenda, are theAshen Bladesalso accomplished weaponsmiths, often crafting their own weapons and war gear. Born into a galaxy riven by war, the Ashen Blades are eager to prove themselves to their Primarch and their Emperor, throwing themselves into combat against the Imperium's countless foes. Organization The Ashen Blades' Chapter organization follows the standard revised Codex Astartes structure. It consists of ten companies, also called Lodges, of Primaris Space Marines, each one hundred warriors strong. Each is commanded by a Captain, who is assisted by a pair of Lieutenants, a Chaplain, an Apothecary, an Ancient, and a retinue of Veterans. The rest of the company is divided into squads of ten to five warriors. There are only slight adaptions in terms of naming certain ranks and disciplines, for example are members of the Librarium called as Battlesmiths. Another example would be the priests of Kharrzim, the chapters equivalent of a codex compliant Reclusiam. As sworn guardians of the Vraccarian Rift, were the Ashen Blades part of the rebuilding process after the reclamation of the Rift, the so-called Riftwar. Although the Rift was officially declared as being brought into compliance, the crusade cost the Ashen Blades and its allies dear, the war is far from over. To cover as much of the Rift as possible, did the Ashen Blades construct four additional chapter bases, acting as staging points, stations for resupply and places to train and raise new recruits until they are sent to Vulkar. Each of those posts are habituated by two entire chapters. This enables them to react on emergency calls as soon as possible. Furthermore, do those posts act as gathering places for newly acquired chronics, predictions and other useful data. The lodges of the Ashen Blades are currently spread as followed: 1 & 10th in space, battle barge Vulkatrix, 2 & 6th on Vulkar, Fortress Monastery Khoz-Ghyrak 3 & 7th on , base of Dorakis 4 & 8th on , base of Dul Bodaz 5 & 9th in the Chpem asteroid belt The 1st Company is made up of the Chapter's most experienced warriors. Veterans who wish to join the 1st Company's ranks rise through several companies, gaining experiences an reputation. Chosen by their superiors, each member of the 1st Company is a veteran of countless battles, a source of inspiration and wisdom and an embodiment of Vulkans teachings. The 1st Company rarely fights as one unit, usually taking to the field alongside other companies to serve as a veteran reserve. Still, the majority of the 1st Company resides on the chapter's flagship, the Vulkatrix, acting as a honor guard for their chapter master and rapid strike force along with members of the Vanguard company. The 2nd, 3rd, 4th and 5th Companies are Battle Companies and do most of the Chapter's fighting. They usually consist of six battleline squads, two close support squads and two fire support squads, forming a balanced force to take on any foe. When the Ashen Blades go to war, they usually deploy a single Battle Company supported by troops from the Veteran, Scout and Reserve Companies. The Reserve Companies are each made up of squads of the same designation. The 6th and 7th Company are essentially additional Battle Companies. Their squads can be moved into a Battle Company to replace losses during a campaign. The 8th Company is the Close Support Company. Reivers and Inceptors from the 8th Company often comprise the first wave of an invasion force, disrupting enemy lines and causing panic before the main forces arrive. The warriors of the 8th Company are also expert at responding quickly to support their brothers when needed. The 9th Company is the Fire Support Company. It is made up of Hellblasters and other heavy weapons squads. They will often be called to assist a battle company should they need extra firepower. Furthermore do the Intercessor and Aggressor squads act as bulwarks of firepower on the battlefield, guaranteeing their brothers advance while at the same time securing escape routes for civilians. The 10th Company of the Ashen Blades is the Scout Company. It consists of fresh recruits whose training is incomplete. They are often tasked with reconnaissance missions during their training process. Aside from training the chapters future recruits do the Vanguard forces follow a quite different goal. Besides the regular specialization of acting behind enemy lines, do the brothers of the Vanguard company act as pathfinders to lost or claimed hubs of information. It is they who secure data vaults, archives and so on until they have been screened by the chapters techmarines. Vanguard strike forces are the first to enter a battlefield and among the last to leave it. They remain until their discoveries are either secured by the main forces of their chapter or, if forced, until they have destroyed every last scroll of lore, preventing it from being used by their enemies. Specialty Ranks and Units The Keymasters The Keymasters are the absolute rulers of the chapters growing archives on Vulkar. Regardless of their origin, be it a priest of Kharrzim or a member of the Battlesmiths, all serve for their greater purpose of their chapter given to them by Lord Guiliman himself. It is they, who analyse every bit of newly discovered lore, using a strict process, which shall filter between heretical writings and useful chronics. With the help of the chapters armoury is the archive constantly growing, which requires a frequently update on the security systems, traps, locks and so on. As a result do only the Keymasters have an overview of every process currently happening in the archives. Without their guidance, even the battle hardened Veteran might get lost in the deep vaults of their Fortress Monastery. more to come Combat Doctrine - the Ashen Blades wage war on two fronts: against the foes of the Imperium and to preserve its past and once claimed wisdom - while the majority of the chapter fights to reclaim and protect worlds, its vanguard is mostly sent to search for data archives and such in order to reclaim as much as possible - in doing so did they specialize in siege warfare and liberation/ defensive operations; weither they defend or the lay siege to a world, their outmost priority is to safeguard as many lives as possible - Vamguard strike forces are sent prior to the main battleforce in order to analyze the battlefield and their foes while at the same time taking a look for archives, data vaults, etc. which will be important to secure during the fight - with enough intel gathered do the Ashen Blades fall upon their foe - Inceptor squadrons fall from the skies upon well prepaired targets, marking the first step of the chapter's attack - Hellblasters and tanks lay siege upon enemy fortresses while Aggressors and Intercessors advance in mobile transports, breaking through enemy lines - Aggressors spread out, adding their devastating firepower to the overall chaos within enemy ranks; at the same time, Intercessors join forces with Vanguard and Inceptor squadrons, overwhelming the remaining adversaries Homeworld - Vulkar, an icy death world, which was once claimed by the XVIIIth Legion during the Great Crusade - the sons of Vulkan saved its population from an growing Ork infestation and reestablished order and civilization beneath thick layers of snow and frost - these days, great cities lie beneath the surface in vast caverns and tunnels, acting as hubs for several tribes - until this day, do they fight the remaining Orks, which still haunt them (comparable with Ironjaws Orruks of AoS) - the Ashen Blades' initiates fight against these with shields and hammer/ sword to proof themselves and their capabilities - several other lethal threats like giant tunnel worms, rock flayers, ravager beasts and so on; nearly nothing of flora & fauna on the surface, only ice and some legendary predators - the chapters fortress monastery is built into a mountain, with one third being above the surface and two third reaching deep into Vulkars ground; one of the deepes and hideous caves, protecting the gathered lore, raising new recruits and so on - there are rumors and unconfirmed legends of an ancient temple, in which Vulan seemed to have caught something; rumor has it that they may be related to the Gorewings, a humanoid race of cannibals Culture - adherents to the Promethean Cult, though slightly altered and adapted by the people of Vulkar in terms of terminology - oaths, use of runes, a book of grudges against seemingly "fellow" imperial allies or foes; example: a Forge World, which denied them precious archive data just for the sake of securing it in the name of the Omnissiah - smiths and loremasters, the fire of Vulkan keeps the population alive and warm; his blades (sons) protect them - venerated as "deliverers of hope" by their people - Keepers of the Keys as important institution, guardians of both, their archives as well as their traditions, the word of the Promethean Cult, etc. - many battle brothers make use of tattoes be it a reminder of a past battle or a rune/ oath to remember/ guard him Geneseed - stable - features their genefather's traits, i.e. resilience and stamina - there are no records of unusual skin pigmentations or differently colored eyes known - only their temperament seems to be "hotter" than that of their distant gene brothers as they are holding grudges against those who did them wrong until said incidents have been settled Notable Ashen Blades - WIP Chapter Fleet - Vulkatrix (Battle Barge), flagship - Draakenheart (Battle Barge) - Blazing Spirit (Strike Cruiser) - Vulkansson (Strike Cruiser) - Grigni's Rage (Strike Cruiser) - Grugmir's Anvil (Forge ship) Chapter Appearance Note: here's their old chapter symbol featured; you can find the new one at the beginning of this article Sources of inspiration and why: Cheers, Kel PS:
  4. The Champions Eternal Chapter Beacons of Light Origins With swathes of the Imperium clinging to life by a thread following the loss of Cadia, and the birth of the Great Rift, new defenders were needed to secure the future of mankind. Every corner of the Imperium is in need of reinforcement. Among the sectors fortunate enough to receive aid is a region of space alongside the Sirens Storm in Segmentum Tempestus, an area known locally as the Lightning Reaches. When Fleet Tertius came to secure the region, the existing Imperial forces were well on their back leg, locked in desperate struggles against Chaos invasions spilling from the Sirens Storm, as well as with contesting forces from every major xenos race, resulting in a sprawling warzone across multiple sectors. What had drawn these forces to the same place was unclear, but without further support, the region was sure to collapse. One of the newly founded Primaris Astartes chapters accompanying the fleet was assigned stewardship of the region. The brotherhood that assumed this role was the untested Champions Eternal. Joining their allies on battlefields throughout the Reaches, the Champions and the Imperium turned a losing battle into a bitter stalemate, finally earning the Imperial forces some room to breath and regroup. While valuable worlds on the frontlines of these conflicts have been ground down to little more than rubble and bone, the worlds inside their perimeter have some measure of security once more. Taking their place in the Lightning Reaches, the Champions Eternal will ensure that the Emperors Light will continue to shine on the worlds threatened by the shadow of the Sirens Storm. Homeworld Despite the desperate need for reinforcements in the Reaches, or perhaps because of it, the Champions had a difficult time locating a world suited to establish as a home. Though they could have continued operating from their fleet, a central base of operations to stockpile supplies, maintain a pool of recruits, and coordinate with allies in the midst of the wartorn Reaches, was too valuable a prospect to pass up. The search eventually led them to a manufactorum-dominated hive world called Karndanaq. When the Champions found it, Karndanaq and its people were struggling. Though reasonably removed from the many frontline conflicts surrounding the region, an ambitious fledgling Drukhari kabal had been preying on it for years by means of well hidden webway portals. The kabal took particular pleasure in killing and capturing adults in droves, leaving countless orphans in their wake. It reached a point that many of those reaching adulthood simply bore an expectation that they would be marked for slavery in the dark city. And so it was by necessity that the planets manufactori were operated, and its defenses were manned, by a disproportionately young population. Knowing that the strategically well-placed world could become a tremendous asset, and enraged by the predations of the kabal, the Chapter settled into orbit over the world to bring the Drukhari to heel. The raiders seemed to sense that their playground was being encroached on, for as the Champions began to make landings on the planet, they were met with stiff resistance from the kabal. For all their conditioning, their training and indoctrination, this was the Champions first true taste of war in all its brutality. Though they took naturally to battle, their lack of experience manifested in inflexible strategies and tactical mistakes that proved costly for the Champions, and in some cases devastating for the natives. There were abject failures and grim tragedies as the Chapter fought and wrestled to gain their footing, both in physically secure landing sites and strategically sound maneuvers. Fortunately, the Champions humbled by their experiences, taking them to heart, and acting quickly to modify their methods. After their initial setbacks, the Champions quickly gained the upper hand on the kabal, routing them thoroughly from the planet. Taking stewardship over the world, the Champions have erected a fortress on small moon Lucidimons above Karndanaq, a monastery called the Calx Eternum. Since establishing control in the system, the Champions have redistributed throughout the Reaches, breaking sieges, executing retaliatory strikes, and easing the pressure on Imperial forces stretched thin throughout the region. Recruitment We are the guardians of of the Emperor's starry overlook, His wardens against the darkness!No evil shall encroach while our watch endures, and our watch endures Eternal! Lieutenant Varatehk Kanatars rallying call at the Siege of COrragh The Champions Eternal could hardly have hoped for a more hardened crop of recruiting stock than the orphans that kept Karndanaq limping along through the oppression the planet suffered at the hands of the Drukhari. The original population of liberated youths that lived through the scouring had the ideal combination of first hand experience of the realities of war, even combat, and the burning admiration for their superhuman saviors. There were few who did not leap at the opportunity to join the ranks of the Angels of Death. Their uplift to Astartes served only to enhance the desire of those left behind to serve the Imperium and their Champions, and raising the next generation to provide support for the Chapter in every conceivable way became the highest aspiration of the planets populous. Many of Karndanaqs manufactori were converted to supply as much materiel as possible to the Chapters supplies, and children are educated with the expectation of taking the trials to become Space Marines themselves. As with all rites of recruitment among Astartes chapters, the path to joining this brotherhood is arduous. Brought before a council of Librarians on the moon above, aspirants are examined both mentally and physically, the purity of every youths zeal as closely studied as the purity of his genes. Those who are accepted face stringent tests based on all the ideals the Champions hold dear, specifically trials of strength, speed, courage, stamina, and wisdom. Those who meet with approval begin implantation. Combat Doctrine Siege of Kahdem Hive Corporal Standis pressed himself against the inside of the trench, grunting as explosions rattled his ribs, each detonation closer than the last. The traitors were closing in. Glancing up, he saw a squad of the red and gold clad astartes nearby, accompanied by another in black armor, break cover. Standis had thought the Astartes above such foolishness; there was no weathering that artillery. It was suicide. In the briefest of lulls between detonations, the corporal heard the one in black roar a single, indistinct word. A strange, bright corona seemed to blossom around the other marines, and in a flash, they were gone. A few more shells detonated nearby, but the next explosions all sounded dull, and distant. The guns had gone still. Standis cautiously peeked over the lip of the trench and saw the advancing traitors faltering as their artillery support vanished and loyalist rallying calls begin to rise. Looking off to the side again, the corporals gaze was met by the black-armored marine, eyes glowing dully within the shadow of his hood. Truly a spectacle to behold in the melee of war, the Champions Eternal are bold and ostentatious in battle. They excel in close combat fights, leaning heavily into the use of powered weapons, particularly thunder hammers, power fists, and lightning claws, with which they rain down attacks on their enemies in showers of crackling energy. The assault elements of the attack will often seek out what they perceive to be the strongest enemy, both in an effort to prove themselves and to break resistance for the advance of line squads. Closely supporting the frontline squads are always members of the Chapter Librarium. This would seem a risky move among some chapters of Astartes, but the Champions seem to have no hesitation to put precious psykers on the frontlines of battle. To their credit, the Champions Librarians regularly demonstrate their value in combat, specializing in smiting enemy vehicles and defenses with psychic lightning, leaving enemy troops unprotected against all-out assaults by their brethren. In this way, the Librarians are powerful anchors for securing control of the battlefield and advancing across it. While it is unreasonable to expect that such use of Librarians can be without consequence, the Champions have proved remarkably successful at maintaining their Librariums numbers; almost strangely so. When bringing armored support to bear, the Champions favor the new patterns furnished by Cawls millenia of work, and as with their infantry, they employ the flashiest and most destructive. Their Repulsor Executioner tanks and Redemptor Dreadnought chassis are very carefully maintained, alongside a significant complement of Whirlwinds that sees extensive use. Fracturing enemy formations with artillery fire prior to the hammering blow of assault units is a highly popular tactic. Despite their relatively successful track record since the Karndanaq Campaign, the Chapter has inevitably faced its share of stiff resistance. Accounts have arisen from some of these desperate stands of cornered squads of Champions flying into a sudden, unnatural fury, laying waste to everything in their path by supposedly unnatural means. Though these brutal counterattacks invariably destroy the enemy, the only members of the Champions Eternal to walk away from these encounters are the Chaplains present. Organization While the Lord Commander Roboute Guilliman has made changes to the Codex Astartes, the Champions Eternal were founded at the traditional strength of 1000 marines in ten companies. The chapters costly mistakes in the Karndanaq Campaign, however, incurred some terrible losses, including the entirety of the 5th company, and so much of the 2nd company that its remainder was redistributed, and the Champions have yet to recover these losses. Leading the Chapter is Master Bileal Baelson, a consummate warrior and, curiously, a powerful psyker. By all accounts, Baelson manifested no psychic ability prior, during or after his creation until the Chapter undertook to liberate their chosen home world. This irregularity has not escaped notice by the more astute among Imperial leadership in the Reaches, but the turmoil in the region has made it too dangerous for the most suspicious parties to risk interference with the Chapter. Far from the only organizational divergence, the Chapters Librarians appear in other unusual roles, with veteran Codiciers taking primary command of each of the companies. The Brother Librarians that join the battle line squads on the field remain distinct members of the Librarium, and arent specifically assigned to any squads. The companies as they stand have been only lightly adjusted for the losses the Chapter sustained are The companies and their commanders are as follows:Magaragan of the 1st Company (Veterans) Federius Libertamine of the 3rd Company (Battle Company) Pardos Penalios of the 4th Company (Battle Company) Eugalar Choromon of the 6th Company (Battle Company) Mareal Bloodfield of the 7th Company (Battle Company) Daros Drudalis of the 8th Company (Assault Company) Ibysr Amanatehp of the 9th Company (Reserve Company) Tanist Mirare of the 10th Company (Scout Company) The current Librarium is led by one brother Teth-Aman, a Karndanaq native that rose quickly through the ranks. The chaplaincy of the Chapter is administrated by Master of Sanctity Takiel Tawnehk. Beliefs Calx Eternum The doors of the Hall of Champions unsealed and parted, and Master Tawnehk led the way inside. Look well, Brother, he said in his low, rumbling voice, Which of the Chapters symbols would you call the most sacred? Akardak paused at the question, eyes flicking over the Chapters artefacts, few though they were for the Chapters age. He raised a hand tentatively reaching toward the Endless Blade, then paused and finally pointed at the still gently billowing Infractum Faros, the unmarred banner of the 2nd Company. He looked back at the Chaplain Master, but Tawnehk sighed and shook his head. Your heart is in the right place, brother, but there is something greater still that we carry into battle, that inspires fear in our foes and hope in our allies. Akardak began to nod, understanding already dawning on him. Yes, Tawnehk went on, nodding as well, It is who we are. Our very name is power. A force for good. A light in a dark galaxy. It is our greatest artefact, and we must never lay it down. Brothers of the Champions Eternal demonstrate a palpable degree of empathy towards the ordinary citizens of the Imperium. This comes as no surprise, as their recruits, particularly those known colloquially as the First Sons of Karndanaq, never forget their most humble beginnings, and the hope and salvation the Astartes brought them. They live to bring this relief to the rest of the Imperium, and believe they do so to the Emperors glory and in His stead. Among the highest ideals of the Champions is to provide the citizens of the Imperium with even the slightest inkling of the Emperors might and majesty, and a modicum of the inspiration that he gave to mankind. While far less suspicious of psykers than some of their brothers in other chapters, the Champions have no illusions about the dangers posed by the warp, the temptations that face the psychically gifted, and in turn, the risks incumbent in appointing Librarians to lead companies. To address these risks, the chaplaincy of the Chapter works closely with the company commanders in a constant vigil of their spiritual purity. Assignments are rotated with the intent of both protecting chaplains from the corruption of hypothetical traitors, and exposing the commanders to scrutiny from multiple perspectives. The Chapter cult engenders an enthusiastic and fervent personality among the brothers, emphasizing pride in their role as the Emperors servants, and eagerness to fulfill their duties and protect the Imperiums citizens from the darkness of the xenos and the heretic. Chaplains have always impressed upon their brothers that the Imperium is its people; not its edifices, not its institutions. The strength of this belief was made apparent during the early months of the Karndanaq Campaign, when the Chapters mistakes caused terrific civilian casualties. The Champions suffered and grieved with the people, in their own way, and the simple, yet unsanctioned mantra of Never again has entered into the Chapter psyche and continues to be intoned on every battlefield. The Chapters dead are honored in ways fairly typical for Astartes, though they maintain no ossuary relics of any kind; deceased brothers are ritually, thoroughly, cremated, and their ashes spread on the surface of the moon. Fallen brothers are often remembered in songs of lament at formal gatherings. Gene-seed The Champions were told that their genetic sires are the Ultramarines, and their gene-seed seems by most accounts to have the expected stability. There is, however, the unexplained matter of certain battlefield casualties recovered from some of the most intense battlefields on which the the Champions have fought; bodies that are more boxed in their power armor rather than wearing it, withered almost as if by extreme mortal age...seemingly burned up from the inside. Only a handful of such bodies have been discovered by anyone outside the Chapter, though they are soon returned to the Champions, one way or another. War Cry Call: We are the living lightning! Answer: The Emperors justice strikes true! Chapter Tactic Living Lightning Battle brothers of the Champions Eternal strike with the fury of the storm, unleashing psychic devastation to break enemy lines as their assault elements crash into the foe. When a Psychic or Deny The Witch test is made by a <Champions Eternal> PSYKER, re-roll any or all dice rolls of a 1. In addition, all <Champions Eternal> INFANTRY units may add +1 to advance and charge rolls. A battle brother of the Champions Eternal, painted by WarriorFish
  5. "To Pierce the Veil - see beyond any deception! This is your duty, above all others!" - Chaplain Garrel, Knights Oracular 10th Company, during a speech to recruits, M39.687 Early History: Imperial Records "We have foreseen a great war coming to this world - but fear not! The Knights Oracular will defend you!" - Epistolary Aradin, Knights Oracular 3rd Company, to the Governor of Paralbos, M38.041 http://www.bolterandchainsword.com/sm.php?b62c=@hvOE9_i8TzJ.hPbn6@@@@@@@hBWPW@hCmX3__..@@@@@@@@@@@_._.@@@@@@@@@@hCmX3hk8Yt__@@@@@@@@@@@hk8Ytiakk7&grid=TRUE A Battle Brother of the Knights Oracular Imperial records first detail the existence of the Knights Oracular in the later years of M37, arriving in the region of space called the Amgyne Sphere, in the Ultima Segmentum. However, the exact date of the Chapter's creation is a matter of some debate amongst scholars. Some insist the Chapter must have been birthed in the 22nd Founding, whilst others insist the Chapter was the sole true success story of the 21st Founding. What is certain, however, is that the Knights Oracular have, from their very first appearance, been locked in an unending war with the vicious, reptillian alien species known as the Khuurladh. Taller and more muscular than typical humans, with long, snapping jaws, cruel fangs, and thick natural scale armour, the Khuurladh are heinous agressors, endlessly raiding Imperial worlds for slaves or supplies. They typically favour large infantry squads, augmented with cybernetics. These raiders take to the field in vast hosts, wielding horrific hook-bladed swords, a sleek, xeno burst-laser weapon called the "Optrica" by Imperial Militia, or two-man teams who have surgically grafted themselves to larger, more deadly weapon platforms. Resilient and ferocious, the Khuurladh are exactly the sort of malevolent alien entity that Space Marines are well-suited to do battle with. Chapter Symbol Appropriately for their name, the Knights Oracular have, over the centuries, become quite adept at predicting the movements and tactics of their hated enemy, allowing them to intercept the Khuurladh raiders and stave off the worst of their predations. On world after world, the Knights Oracular would fight off the voracious xenos, earning a heroic reputation that gradually spread all across the Amgyne Sphere. The turning point in the campaign was undoubtedly the defence of the Forge World, Vaanatar, wherein the Knights Oracular appeared in the planet's orbit in time to prevent even a single Khuurladh from making planetfall, through daring and audacious exploits of voidborne combat. Their initial campaign culminated in a devastating assault on Ineffar, the homeworld of the Khuurladh. After a brutal siege battle that lasted almost a full week, the Knights emerged victorious - not a single living Khuurladh remained on Ineffar. In a move that was one part defiant statement and one part memorial to all those whom the Khuurladh had slain, the Knights Oracular chose to establish a Fortress Monastery on Kryptis, the moon of Ineffar. Such was the esteem that the Chapter was held in by the worlds who had seen them stave off the Khuurladh's attacks, that great migrations of people came to Kryptis, building their cities inside great eco-domes that soon dotted the empty moon's jade-green surface. It was a matter of mere decades before the Knights began to recruit from the Krypthian population, and their numbers began to grow. Finally stable in their new home, the Knights Oracular vowed to protect the Amgyne Sphere, come what may. ==+++ Signal Received +++== =-=- Krypthian Datalock .833. Detected -=-= ==&&=-Parsing Information-=&&== ..=..=..=..=..=..=..= ==+++ Clearance Requested +++== >> ENTER: Oraculus Dominatus ..=..=..=..=..=..=..= ==+++ Clearance Granted +++== .-.--==Returning to Imperial Records==--.-. ..=..=..=..=..=..=..= Recent History: Imperial Records "The Knights Oracular were created to give people something to believe in! That is our mission!" - Atributed to Chapter Master Barantin, M41.070, during the battle of Bramigar However, problems for the Knights Oracular were just beginning. The Khuurladh proved to have survived the destruction of their homeworld, becoming a nomadic warhost bent solely on vengeance and annihilation. They launched a fierce attack against Krypthis, then at other worlds all around the Amgyne Sphere. On top of the resurgence of their most hated foe, the arrival of duplicitous Dark Eldar pirates and relentless Ork Waaaaghs in the Amgyne Sphere served to test the mettle of the Knights Oracular even further. Furthermore, the Inquisition - perhaps unduly - began to question how the Knights Oracular had been so effective at countering the activities of the Khuurladh, and began to pry into the Chapter's affairs. However, the Knights proved to be up to the challenge, meeting all alien threats in fearless combat. Wherever the vile xenos struck, there too would be the Knights Oracular, fighting ferociously in the defence of the Imperium, an unwavering shield against the darkness. Not even the most paranoid of Inquisitors could fault the dedication of the Knights Oracular. However, on the Hive World of Bramigar, at the dawn of the 41st Millennium, the Knights Oracular found themselves at the centre of a horrible revelation. Fighting alongside Inquisitor Jonessan against what seemed to be a typical Khuurladh horde, the Knights found themselves betrayed - several amongst their number were seen to command the aliens, setting them on their own forces and resisting all but the most spirited and ferocious attacks. But the Knights - led by no less a figure than their beloved Chapter Master Barantin, rallied together and won the day regardless, their cunning and skill-at-arms driving the traitors into retreat. However, Chapter Master Barantin had fallen in combat with the treacherous Captain Karek, whose blade lay stuck through the back of the heroic Chapter Master. It was quickly discovered the traitors had been part of a fiendish ruse by Alpha Legion spies, who had sought to overthrow and discredit the Chapter by supplanting them after harassing them with innumerable attacks by their Khuurladh servants. In the aftermath, a conclave of Inquisitors levied a Penitence Crusade on the Chapter, sending fully half of the remaining Knights Oracular in pursuit of their betrayers, heading towards the Eye of Terror. The Chapter accepted these terms unflinchingly, knowing in their hearts that atonement was required for their lack of vigilance. Those Knights that remained in the Amgyne Sphere pledged to hunt down and eradicate every single traitor marine that dared to show themselves in the Sphere. Even in the Dark Millennium, this promise holds true. The Knights Oracular display a level of ferocious hatred for their betrayers that can be frightening to behold, and will never show mercy when faced with one of their former 'brothers'. ==&&=-Parsing Information-=&&== ..=..=..=..=..=..=..= ==+++ Clearance Granted +++== .-.--==Returning to Imperial Records==--.-. ..=..=..=..=..=..=..= Beliefs: Imperial Records "We die, so that the Imperium lives on." - Last words of Brother Feriex, at the battle of Ephera, M39.893 The Knights Oracular place the defence of the people of the Imperium above all other concerns, even their own survival. No matter how ferocious the foe, or how great their numbers, the Knights Oracular fight with every ounce of strength they can muster to protect humanity. They believe it is the Will of The Emperor to do so, and to die fulfilling His Will is the greatest death that one can achieve. The Chapter displays an absolute hatred of their long-time enemies, the Khuurladh, and of the Alpha Legion forces that once infiltrated their ranks. Seeking out and destroying these two vile forces is what drives the Chapter's vigilant watch over the Amgyne Sphere. The Knights Oracular take pride in their heroic reputation, and their armour is often replete with hard-earned decorations. Purity seals, campaign markings, banners and capes are commonplace amongst sergeants and veterans. ==&&=-Parsing Information-=&&== ..=..=..=..=..=..=..= ==+++ Clearance Granted +++== .-.--==Returning to Imperial Records==--.-. ..=..=..=..=..=..=..= Combat Doctrine: Imperial Records "Wars are won with knowledge, conviction and decisive action." - Sergeant Makaran, Knights Oracular 8th Company, M41.550 The Knights Oracular largely conduct warfare according to the doctrines of the Codex Astartes - flexibility and adaptation to battlefield circumstances are the hallmarks of their methods. The Chapter's Librarians specialise in the divination of enemy movements, both on a tactical and strategic scale, all-but ensuring the Knights have an edge that can be levied even against the most dangerous of foes. Even in battle, the Chapter's librarians are known for their powerful displays, especially against the Khuurladh, where their power can disable or destroy entire squads with a single, powerful strike. The Knights Oracular have been so constantly at war with the Khuurladh that the Chapter at times seems to run the risk of becoming overspecialised, sometimes appearing to struggle in adapting their typical approaches to combat with Orks, traitor Space Marines, or Dark Eldar. ==&&=-Parsing Information-=&&== ..=..=..=..=..=..=..= ==+++ Clearance Granted +++== .-.--==Returning to Imperial Records==--.-. ..=..=..=..=..=..=..= Organisation: Imperial Records "The Codex Astartes doesn't support this action... but we do have contingencies in place for such occasions." - Captain Ebreck, Knights Oracular 9th Company, M39.076 The Knights Oracular maintain a broadly Codex-Adherent structure, keeping ten Companies of a hundred Space Marines. Howerver, if the parameters of a mission or campaign call for an adjustment to the Codex-approved approach, the Knights Oracular do not hesitate to embrace the challenge. The Chapter is badly under strength after the betrayal at Bramigar, and the subsequent Penitence Crusade issued unto them. The Knights Oracular are currently roughly five hundred in number, excluding the first generations of Primaris Space Marines that the Chapter has recently adopted. Though the Chapter was given the means to create Primaris Marines, they were not directly given Primaris reinforcements. The Knights Oracular have accepted this gift humbly, knowing they can use to protect the Amgyne Sphere more capably than ever through its use. ==&&=-Parsing Information-=&&== ..=..=..=..=..=..=..= ==+++ Clearance Granted +++== .-.--==Returning to Imperial Records==--.-. ..=..=..=..=..=..=..= Geneseed: Imperial Records "We see through all deceptions. We are the Knights Oracular, and our justice is swift!" - Brother Jaranse, Knights Oracular Fifth Company, M41.790 Though no official records confirm the primogentor of the Knights Oracular, their geneseed tithes submitted to Forge World Vaanatar most closely resemble that of the Ultramarines, with little to no genetic degradation. Obvious ties to their gene-father are present in other aspects of the Chapter, however: chiefly the Knights' flexible, pragmatic approach to warfare, and their noble dedication to the protection of the Imperium and its people. ==&&=-Parsing Information-=&&== ..=..=..=..=..=..=..= ==+++ Clearance Granted +++== .-.--==Returning to Imperial Records==--.-. +++ Pierce The Veil, Brother +++ ..=..=..=..=..=..=..= +++>> Oraculus Dominatus <<+++ .-.--==Message Concludes==--.-.
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