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sock's Inq28


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I've been gradually putting together some Inq28 stuff for a little while now and while I'm nowhere near done I think Inqusitor Vyke's warband may be drawing to a close:

Inquisitor Stefan Vyke
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Kapitein de Vries
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Death Cult Assassin Agent Agent S -734
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Saskia Willemse
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71
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Geralt Waskiej
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Gruund Uries
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Tomas Erasmus
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Jan Koeppe
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Dieter Roux
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Kroot Bounty Hunter Karok Norr
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Next couple of posts are back stories and additional photos, too many pictures to condense into one apparently.



Vyke - Inquisitor

An idiosyncratic character with mood alterations to match, by turns garrulous and taciturn, seemingly independent of circumstance. A skilled sworsman, though far less prone to violent resolution of problems than many of his colleagues, prioritising the gathering of information and exploiting both the flaws and benefits of the Imperium's vast bureaucracy to stymie it's enemies. The diversion of an arms shipment here, changing a planetary governor's itnierary there; such actions are more oblique solutions than those employed by other Inquisitors and have less overtly demonstrable results than the military suppression of an uprising or summoning, indeed offering less opportunity for advancement or notoriety, yet Vyke is a strong adherent of the maxim that prevention is better than cure. Although a moderate who eschews violence unless necessary he does have an investigatory vice and that is torture. He retains a higher number of interrogators in his retinue than would normally be expected and trawling the archives of his exhaustive case notes would seem to indicate an incredibly high rate of expiration amongst subjects, even those from whom sensitive information was not necessarily expected to be extracted. Has been known to work in concert with fellow moderate Inquisitor Gerrit Jansen and the more puritanical Michiel van Graal.


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De Vries - Acolyte

Kapitein de Vries came to Vyke's attention during the aftermath of a massive Dark Eldar raid on Esko. The Esko PDF, in which de Vries served, was all but annihilated as it attempted to withstand the ferocious onslaught of multiple covens; a scale of attack they were woefully ill prepared to deal with unleashed upon their world. de Vries was but one of a handful officers who survived the ordeal and almost unique in that his continued existence came about despite being a constant presence on the front lines, standing shoulder to shoulder with his men while both superiors and subordinates cowered in underground command bunkers or simply deserted, shirking their responsibilities to the world and its citizens world. His inspirational leadership, married to a keen strategic mind and an indomitable resolve, was credited with preserving the planet's largest hive and stalling the raiders long enough for Imperial naval support to arrive and drive the xenos away

 Rather than being lauded and rewarded for his efforts de Vries found himself court marshalled for disobeying orders to abandon fortifications key to protecting the civilian population in order to guard the PDF high command. Imprisoned along with several of his most trusted surviving NCO's, he was offered up by those who had failed Esko as a scapegoat for their ineffectiveness and cowardice. Vyke was with the relief fleet and having caught wind of the conspiracy was outraged. Not yet powerful enough to bring down the well-connected aristocrats who permeated the top ranks of the PDF and its associated bureaucracy on the spot he was able to secure the release of de Vries and his men. Disgusted at his treatment by the PDF hierarchy and distraught by the damage wrought upon his homeworld de Vries saw in Vyke an opportunity to escape his immediate situation and try to prevent his experience being that of others. He readily accepted Vyke's offer to join his fledgling retinue, on condition that the offer be extended to the loyal NCO's.

Since that day de Vries has traversed the Imperium by Vyke's side and is fiercely protective of the Inquisitor.  After all, the wounds of Esko remain raw for the Kapitein and Vyke has provided him with endless opportunities to exorcise the rage they engender; de Vries service is characterised by the same unflinching belligerence in the face of the Imperium's enemies that so distinguished him in the rubble of his home planet.



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Agent S-734 - Death Cult Assassin

As befits an assassin, even one from the more visible death cult order, little is known about Agent S-734. They do not socialise with others of Jansen's motley assortment of acolytes and henchmen in what little downtime that exists between missions, opting to largely stay confined to quarters. The Agent’s usage is usual for their class with a focus on the elimination of prize targets, but Jansen will often utilise them as an observer cum bodyguard even in meetings and situations where conflict is not anticipated. The sinewy figure, when not engaged in athletic, acrobatic death-dealing is often taut and overly still in a manner that suggests barely supressed violence; Jansen has found the effect this has on a room to be conducive to the quick and focused conclusion of business, with a pleasing absence of threats or attempts to double cross. Not everyone the Inquisitor interacts with proceeds with such regard to their wellbeing, however, though few are given the opportunity to make such mistakes again once the Agent is unleashed.


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Saskia Willemse - Acolyte

A former hive ganger Saskia is as fierce and cunning as any to survive in lethal environs of the underhive for any length of time and martial prowess is always of use to an Inquisitor. While now serving a far more noble cause, this grounding has made her useful as means of accessing networks of information and people that other members of Vyke's retinue would struggle even approach without being killed, let alone fit in with.

She came to Vyke circuitously. Through other agents and double blinds, Vyke employed Saskia's gang to surveil some new rivals; activity they were already undertaking and so more than happy to be paid for. The Inqusitior was investigating the possibility of a new cell of heretics having already eleiminated 2 Alpha Legion affiliated cells on the planet's nearest neighbour. However, it emerged that the surveillance subjects were actually a nascent Genestealer Cult who must have determined that they were being monitored, for not long after Saskia's gang began gathering intelligence the cultists attacked them in force. They were repelled, but the gang was severely depleted and the remnants scattered, attempting to blend into the underhive mass for protection. Before making her own way, Saskia sent back one last report assuming - correctly - that whomever sought the information she'd been supplying thus far would also be interested in and willing to pay for details of the skirmish and its action. Pic captures of a cultists corpse that had been missed in their retreat prompted Vyke to quickly mobilise several squads of Inqusitiorial Stormtroopers to embark upon a seek and destroy mission. While reviewing the operational intelligence he noticed that several of the gang's reports were more detailed than the others, displaying an innate acuity as to what information would be most useful. He used his agents to track Saskia down and offer her a position in his retinue. While disinclined to co-operate with such an authority figure, life in the underhive is tricky enough when affiliated, bereft of this support and protection it would only be a matter of time before someone or something caught Saskia out. Vyke's offer was at least potential salvation from a lonely, petty fate and so she took it, though it would seem that over time and with exposure to the Imperium's myraid enemies she is gradually becoming a true believer in the Inqusition's cause rather than simply a useful hanger on.



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71 - Servitor

71 was recovered from an abandoned explorator dig site when Vyke responded to a distress beacon on one of the many dead worlds that mark the approach to the Ghoul Stars, deviating from his arranged visit at Watch Fortress Pykman. An ex-miner among Vykes retinue had made use of this pattern of servitor in his former life and was rather taken with it, he asked to bring it with them and promised he could make it useful. So it proved.

Designed for heavy duty mining in locations inaccessible to larger equipment, 71 has been invaluable. Whether clearing passages in a variety of the less salubrious environments Vyke's investigations may take him, be they dense jungles or the decrepit urban warrens of the underhive, enabling quick entry to sealed vaults or seemingly secure enemy positions or even fighting - industrial equipment defeats much tougher substances than flesh after all - the servitor has found multiple uses in Vyke's' service.



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Geralt Waskiej – Acolyte

One of a number of Guardsmen or Enforcers Vyke has accumulated as part of his retinue for when he may need experienced fighters, but the use of Inquisitorial Storm Troopers is impractical or excessive. Of course Vyke also well knows that on occasion it doesn't hurt to enter a room with a skull masked warrior at his shoulder so obviously from one of the rightly renowned Death Korps regiments.

Geralt spends little time with the other retinue members and they are content to leave him be, anguish at being separated from the Korps radiates from him oppressively. Yet he does not return for reasons none have gleaned nor that Vyke has chosen to disclose and it's not as if others have not been permitted to re-unite with their precinct or regiment of origin in the past. The closest the grenadier's posture or demeanour come to relaxed or satisfied, as far as anyone can tell given his general disinclination to de-mask in plain view, seems to be when observing flames, be they gouting from his impeccably maintained weapon or atop the candles that clutter his quarters.



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Gruund Uries - Acolyte

The lone survivior of a small moon come mining complex overrun by Genestealers after an infested piece of Space Hulk fell from orbit. Although the miners had rudimentary defences, even at their best they would have been hard pressed to withstand the handful of xenos killing machines that had survived the descent from the starts and they were caught entirely unawares.

Some of the miners managed to seal themselves inside their living quarters block, but the sanctuary was not long lived. Eventually the Genestealers were inside with them. One by one the men were hunted down and torn to shreds; all but Gruund. Vyke has never quite extracted the full story from his acolyte, but between the snippets Gruund has been able to disclose through his trauma it would seem that he was able to evade and kill the last three creatures via  ingenious improvised weapons and traps in the days it took for the distress signal to finally be answered by Vyke whose cruiser happened to be the nearest Imperial vessel. Exploration of the quarters was a slow and torturous process, one several of Vyke's retinue bid him abandon after numerous brushes with a variety of devices rigged to explode or impale in the confines of corridors and rooms. Their Inquisitor bore them forward, intent on discovering an explanation for the siaughter inside and outside the block, even if the hope of finding survivors had been snuffed by the eviscera that seemed to permeate the block interior.

They found Gruund in the mess, eating from a ration packet, his tattered mining suit coated almost head to toe in a dark mixture of ichor, ash, blood and dirt. At first he believed his deliverers an illusion of his mind, teetering as it was on the brink of sanity. Vyke at length coaxed the basics of the incident from the miner and persuaded him to leave the nightmarish surrounds of the block, taking him back to the ship. Having nowhere else to go and profoundly grateful for his rescue, Gruund pledged himself to the Inquisitor's service extolling the virtues of his explosives training the result of which the retinue had all borne witness to trying to find him. Intrigued by a non-military man who killed at least three Genestealers Vyke allowed him the chance to prove himself and so he has. An acquisitive man, Gruund is forever picking up sharp implements and explosive devices to add to the plethora already hanging from the re-purposed remains of his mining suit and he has found many opportunities to demonstrate his tactility with both, particularly setting traps and enabling ingress or egress as situations require. He's a quiet man, still haunted by his ordeal, but liked well enough by Vyke's other companions.



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Tomas Erasmus - Acolyte

One of the sergeants steadfastly loyal to Kapitein de Vries, Erasmus fought for Esko with the heart and strength of the lions of Terran myth, with a personal kill tally beyond measure, yet effectively exiled by the cowardice and self-interest of those who failed his homeworld completely. Like so many in the Esko PDF, he bore witness to slaughter and torture of the planet's populace that couldn't have been conceived in even the darkest of nightmares. Experiences so far in excess of that a man like he could ever have expected, experiences that broke many of those battling, seemingly in vain, on Esko's behalf. Not Erasmus. In addition to the general attrition of engagements he was twice the only survivor of his unit holding a strategic location against the cruel onslaughts of the Dark Eldar menace*. The more he was exposed to their vile depravity the stronger his resolve to resist became and it was rare to see him away from the front lines, typically only orders would make him stay for longer than it required to gather supplies.  

When Vyke secured the services of de Vries and thus his men, Erasmus was mere hours away from execution. Though humble, he knew the efforts he and many of his comrades, too few of them surviving to deliverance, had made to preserve Esko and when the governor's enforcers came to seize him for court martial he killed four of them in a rage before being subdued. He was retrieved from incarceration bloodied, filth-stained and hollow-eyed. Kept in isolation and mistreated by those who had scarcely lifted a finger for the planet or its people seems to have done what the xenos could not and broke his spirit. He is now a tactiurn man seldom given to expressions of joy or amusement except in a fight or in response the gravest of gallows humour.

His weapons, commanding officer and few remaining comrades are his only connection to the planet he endured so much to save; all are sources of both comfort and anguish. He fights the enemies of the Imperium as directed by Vyke, through de Vries, with an unrestrained fury as though each one felled by his chainglaive might alleviate the collective weight of injustice, separation and grief that constantly threaten to suffocate him. The cumulative impact of his experiences may have left him beyond peace, but he is a fearsome weapon in the Inquisition's arsenal and Vyke knows that if he should need to resort to a pure show of force that Erasmus will be in the thick of the fight a seemingly indomitable presence.


Archive note: On each occasion he was relieved by de Vries, which may in part explain the extent of his devotion to the kapitein.

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Jan Koeppe & Dieter Roux - Acolytes

Both men are enforcers accumulated by Vyke as he traverses the Imperium. Their deeds while impressive have not been deemed worthy of detailed recording in Vyke's archives. He has merely noted their field proficiency and adaptability both in reconnaisance and combat.


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Karok Norr - Bounty Hunter

Formerly traversing the galaxy with a Rogue Trader, Karok Norr's journey witrh the Inquisition began when it transpired, while in port on a major world following salvage missions aboard a Space Hulk, that members of the crew he served with had become tainted by the nascent tendrils of a Genestealer infestatation. Having become a wandering mercenary after his clan were eradicated by a chance encounter with Tyranid vanguard organisms, he joined -unbidden- Imperial Navy ratings in their purge of the infected with vicious enthusiasm. Witnessing his actions, the remainder of the crew threatened mutiny if the Captain were to allow Karok back aboard and so he was left at the port to fend for himself. Inquisitor Gerrit Jansen read the report of the incident and set a course. Previous experiences with the Kroot had left him intrigued by the species, particularly their willingness to align with a variety of species other than their own, even ones that are in open warfare with each other, and had duly set an alert on any reports citing the avian creatures.

Although used to the exotic, often multi-species retinues of Rogue Traders that regularly paraded through the port, the local population was tolerant of non-humans at best and away from their crews they were not warmly received. Karok, had taken to subsisting in the thick woods outside the port when Jansen arrived searching for him. In the end the the object of his search found Jansen first, stalking him through the glades trying to discern the interloper's purpose. Somewhat proficient in low gothic, Karok was able to convey the state of limbo he currently existed in and welcomed the opportunity the Inqusitior offered to leave the planet.

He has since proved himself a valuable fighter, but even more useful as a tracker whose skills can seemingly be brought to bear in almost any environment; from deserts to jungles to underhives, Karok has helped Jansen discover countless evasive persons key to his investigations. The Kroot displays his seals of sanction and merit prominently while on business within the Imperium both through pride and necessity. On many worlds he could be shot on sight or at the very least incarcerated simply for walking around, yet for all that he continues to work with Jansen for the Imperium's benefit, though that may not be his primary motivation, stateless as he would otherwise be outside of Jansen's band of operatives.



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Oh wow, that's some *amazing* work! Well done! 

Painting's nice and crisp - a well-chosen palette, which manages to take greys and ensure they're not 'drab'; and seriously quality blending on the Kroot! 

It's good you've put thought into the fluff underpinning each miniature (and their connections to one another), giving depth and a sens of narrrative arcs intersecting - and, of course, how to represent it upon them with modelling choices. 

The partsmixes are seriously cool as well - indeed, they're an absolute standout. Really quality use of bitz and design elements, and bringing them together to form cohesive wholes. You've managed to create miniatures that solidly evoke the concepts they're connected to - that look original, but also like they 'belong'; both to the 41st millennium, and to each other. 

Seriously standout work. I can't say that enough. Well *done*. 

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