Emperor Preserve

Guardsmen Log Volume Two

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Nazauth Karkalla introduced me to the group today. They all seem like a good group of people. It turns out that the psyker I worried about is about two thirds my height and is a woman. After meeting the group and talking with them for a while I find a lot of my fears put to rest. Apparently they just got back from fighting a bunch of dark elder aboard a black ship. From what I have heard they kicked some serious ass. Even killed their leader and kept the helmet as a trophy. Karkalla is assigning us to look after some prisoners and escort them to the Solomon system. Also I am to a part of a new task force called Sciscitatio with the rest of the group. Looks promising.

I am deeply troubled by [Redacted]

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The Demise of Akirvas, the Pyre of Fehndahl & the birth of Sciscitatio
I really thought the Brother-Sergeant would say goodbye

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From: Intios; Adeptus Administratum & Acolyte of the Holy Inquisition, Ordo Hereticus

From my position behind the rocks near the Dark Eldar’s first insertion point, I am accosted by two Dark Eldars using their blade weapons. After I have fallen into my own pool of blood, one of the Dark Eldars puts me into manacles. To my surprise, the two Dark Eldars leave me to bleed out. I am still conscious but unable to free myself from the manacles. Lucky for me, my hands were bound in front of me. I am able to sling my backpack over my head and get to my medkit. With my blood loss stopped, the fuzziness in my head seems to clear up.

At this moment, there are all sorts of chatter on my internal vox and external mic. I hear Brother-Sergeant Agamorr shouting as boltgun rounds go off. Arion is engaged with various Dark Eldars and Odessa is still perched on top of the container. It seems Sergeant Forden’s treachery was met in kind by Odessa as I see the remnants of his body aflame on top of the container.

Unfortunately, the other members of Calculus-Logi Trempan’s team did not survive the Dark Eldar onslaught. Moments later, it seems the entire cargo hold starts to shake and shift. I lose my footing a few times but I am finally able to regain my balance and run towards to containers. It is evident that the Imperial Navy has started their bombardment of the space hulk. The majority of the Dark Eldars start running towards their initial breach. They must sense that the space hulk is being torn apart.

I am able to get a quick glimpse of Arion’s last fatal blow on Akirvas as his helmet is torn in two. At that moment, Odessa jumps off of her perch and runs towards Akirvas’s body. I hear Agamorr’s voice telling all survivors to rally on his position. I position myself onto the hover cart and work the controls enough to glide myself towards Agamorr. As I meet up with my team members, I see Arion carrying Lady D’s body and Odessa carrying Akirvas’s helmet. As the cargo hold shakes some more, Agamorr yells, “Time to go!”

We rush onto the deck with the escape capsules but notice that there is no power on the entire floor. That’s when we hear the whispered voice of Vogel saying, “Trust in the Emperor, for the Emperor protects.” We all jump into our escape pods and feel a sudden burst of energy pushing our pods away from the space hulk, which is now 1/8 of its original size. I quickly get on the modified vox caster and send a hail to the Imperial Navy for rescue.

Our time convalescing on Scintilla may have taken weeks. Once we were on our feet, we decided to make a visit to our inquisitorial contact, Septimus Dexter. We wanted to inquire if he knew anything more about the daemon Nekaybraianon, the Luminous Reproach or the Liber Daemonica. He told us that these are guarded secrets of Ordo Malleus. We had Dexter take an image of Akirvas’s helmet and he said he would look into clues he can discover.

View_from_the_Funeral_Terrace_of_Tricorn_Palace.jpgWe were soon contacted by Inquisitor Karkalla to meet him on the 125th floor of Tricorn Palace. We arrive and see an enormous open deck with a grand view. We immediately see Inquisitor Artanyan and his acolyte, Bassi. There are various people around one covered body atop a pyre. We find Inquisitor Karkalla standing next to the pyre. He thanks us for joining him and congratulates us on a job well done on the space hulk. Karkalla tells us that the body on the pyre is the witch hunter Fhendahl. Fhendahl’s team had tracked the Burning Princess to Dusk, where they were annihilated. We wondered if this Burning Princess was the one we found clues of on Hesiod’s Wake. The young girl, Ignis, may have been referred to as the burning one.
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Karkalla motioned to a gentleman nearby who was dressed in formal Imperial Guard clothing. Karkalla introduces us to Lieutenant Karpath Rommulus. Karpath, who stands at six feet nine inches with grey hair and yellow eyes, tells us he is from the 89th Sepheris Secundus Maceries. I know that Maceries is High Gothic for “wall”. While Imperial guards do not serve as planetary defense forces, I wonder if his time on the frozen planet was guarding from threats beyond or within. Karpath has burn marks on his face and body and a mechanical left arm. He tells us that he is the lone survivor of his unit due to an Ork incursion on the planet Graia. At age 28, Lt. Karpath is much older than most standard Imperial Guardsman. His knack for survival must have garnered the Inquisition’s attention. Karpath proudly proclaims, “Reporting for duty.”

Karkalla proceeds to tell us that he has put together a joint Order Hereticus and Xenos taskforce. He hasn’t rolled it out yet, but we are the first members of the Saint of Vigilance Sciscitatio taskforce. From High Gothic, the direct translation would be "ever seeing, ever looking or ever investigating.” But from the context of how Karkalla was using the term, he most likely means Relentless Vigilance. Karkalla has tasked us with assisting Interrogator Fredelinus escort four individuals to the Solomon system.

After a visit with the quarter master, we are ready to travel to Solomon. It looks like we have another shuttle to catch.

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Guardsmen Log Volume One

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After a good amount of time with Inquisitor Karkalla he is finally assigning me to a group of acolytes. From what I have heard these acolytes have been around for a while. If the information I have been told is correct then the group consists of an assassin specializing in melee combat, a scribe of the adeptus administratum, and a psyker. Not really a fan of psykers. I don’t trust them and will have to keep an eye on that one.

I still haven’t found [Redacted]

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The Light from the Xenos Bonfires Grow Dim

The warp maven battles atop her storage container, enemies ablaze all around her.

The blademaster, who seems to value the blood of his opponents above most else, has left behind a circle of foes, some of whom still burn. He now faces the Archon of this raiding party, who has just sprayed him with a foul liquid liquid that eats through armor & flesh. He felt it enter his system, but he’s from sturdy battle-tested stock, and was able to withstand its poisonous corrosions.

The scholar warrior has fallen, cornered by multiple foes in a side room and sliced with their ultrasharp xenos bayonets until he could stand no longer. To his surprise, through his haze of pain, he found himself being bound rather than dispatched to the Emperor’s bosom. Unfortunately, his vast knowledge includes the rumors of what Dark Eldar take great pleasure in doing to their captives. Blessedly, he knows only vague rumors and no specifics, as he lays there watching his blood expand in a pool around him & left to imagine his grisly fate.

Intermittantly, various Acolytes have seen dataslate-sized rubble flying out of the darkness at their foes. They have suspected it is the spirit of Vogel, for they’ve also heard hiss voice urging them to hold fast, for he has alerted the only help there is.

The Space Marine Brother-Sergeant Agamorr joined the battle, seemingly risen from the dead. The deep loud thumps heard by the cell were charges he used to breach the deck, from a defensible room he had been able to fight his way to but had then been trapped in. The Space Marine’s armor is a wreck, deeply scored with claws and leaking fluids from many places. His Thunderhammer is completely coated in alien gore & drips ichor.

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The Acolytes Spread the Emperor's Light in Hold #6
Who knew Eldar were so flammable?

Burning Dark Eldar lends a flickering & slightly brighter quality to the vast Inquisitorial Hold. The odor of cooked xenos flesh permeates the previously musty ambiance….

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Inquisitor Adorjin, the Luminous Reproach, the Liber Daemonica & the Kabal of the Crimson Woe
Starting combat in cover has its advantages

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From: Intios; Adeptus Administratum & Acolyte of the Holy Inquisition, Ordo Hereticus

We walked into the black ship with the Acolytes sent by Inquisitor Soldevan. Their group leader seemed to be led by Calculus-Logi Trempan. Also in their group were Enginseer Molochan, Sergeant Forden and Lady D. We decided to work together for the time being to accomplish our mission to locate the Luminous Reproach.

As we walked deeper into the black ship, we were being surrounded by human apparitions of all types. Their leader, who identified himself as Crovus, asked if we were with the Inquisition. As the spirits circled in around us, we heard another voice yell out, “The dead shouldn’t plague the living, Crovus.” As we heard this voice, the other spirits stepped aside to allow a spirit of a man in a long coat step forward. Crovus referred to this new spirit as Vogel and called him a heretic. Vogel began walking away but before he did so, he implied that he could tell us more about what was hunting us.

We followed Vogel to what seemed like his personal quarters. He identified himself as Ishtan Vogel, former acolyte of the Inquisition, serving Inquisitor Adorjin. Vogel immediately recognized all of us as current acolytes. He was the one who sent Adorjin’s signal from the black ship when it entered real space. I asked him how he was able to get a signal out when our own modified vox casters could not penetrate the space hulk. He told us that the bridge of the black ship had a transmitter that allowed him to send short messages out of the hulk for the Imperial Navy to receive. Vogel knows that with the hulk entering real space so close to Scintilla, the Navy will have no choice but to destroy it. Vogel told us to take Adorjin’s possessions and leave this hulk quickly.

We asked if the Luminous was still with Adorjin. Vogel looked at us inquisitively and asked us if we were only here for the blade. What else is there, we asked. Vogel told us among Adorjin’s possessions is the Liber Daemonica. This is the book of the Grey Knights and as one of their highest honors, gave the book to Inquisitor Adorjin. Vogel told us the story of how Adorjin was possessed at a young age by the daemon Nekaybraianon. Adorjin made it her life’s work to track and take vengeance upon Nekaybraianon. After two centuries, Adorjin was finally able to trap Nekaybraianon within the hold of this black ship, now code named Twilight. Vogel pointed us in the direction of Hold 13.

Upon entering Hold 13, we can only see one light source a few meters above the ground. As we get closer to the light source, we all make the realization that what we are walking on are the frozen remains of the daemon Nekaybraianon. All around us are tentacles, gaping mouths, fangs and eyeballs everywhere. The light source is coming from the Luminous Reproach itself. Both frozen in time and in ice is the display of Inquisitor Adorjin, wearing her power armor, driving the Luminous into the body of the daemon. As I gaze upon Adorjin’s frozen body, I have a strange feeling about desecrating what is the final resting place of this Inquisitor. Any objections were quickly overcome because we were sent on a mission to retrieve the blade.

Arion climbs on top of the mass that was the daemon and gets to Adorjin. Both of her hands are clutching the sword and the Liber Daemonica is strapped to a chain on her hip. It takes a while to chip the ice away so that we can separate Adorjin’s body from the daemon. Once Adorjin’s body was free, I use the hover cart to levitate up to her level so that we can move the body onto the cart. Out of fear of the daemon I am now climbing, I instinctively start singing an old hymn to the Emperor. I notice that any fear I once felt slowing fade away. Once Adorjin’s body was taken care of, we were able to free both the sword and the book. Arion quickly put away the articles into his backpack. Odessa and I are now on high alert to any treachery from Trempan’s group.

Vogel seems relieved when we were able to get both the book and sword. Now he warns us that the Corsairs/Dark Eldars will be arriving shortly. The Dark Eldars seem to favor a breach within Hold 6. At this time we go about looking for materials that may slow down their advance. The enginseer and I go to Hold 3 and find multiple containers of flammable fluid as well as a tool set with cooper wires, flares, goggles, gloves and smaller containers. We bring this material back to Hold 6 so that we can setup traps.

As the enginseer is setting up grenade traps, Odessa and Arion are setting up their fire trap nearby. I am able to ride the hover cart back to Hold 3 to look for more useful materials. I hear Odessa ask Vogel if the name Akirvas means anything to him. Vogel believes that he has heard the Dark Eldars refer to one as Akirvas. After the traps were set, Vogel calls to our attention a small object on the wall. He uses some sort of telekinetic power to rip it off. He points to the small crystalline object and says, “They’re coming.”
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Moments later, a 2 meter floating disk appears by the breach in Hold 6. A hologram projection comes to life. A booming voice says, “I am Akirvas, the leader of the Cabal of the Crimson Woe. Will anyone parlay with me?” Arion steps towards to hologram and inquires what the Dark Eldar want Arkivas_-_Dark_Eldar_Archon.jpgwithin the Twilight. Akirvas states that all he wants is to go through our possessions in exchange for our lives. We obviously do not acquiesce to their demands. Seconds later the platform explodes into pieces.

We have now all taken positions behind the cargo containers near the breach. Even in the darkness, we know that the Dark Eldar have arrived. It seems our grenade traps have worked since we hear a few explosions. We see the initial wave of Dark Eldar pour out of the breach. There may be six or so. We hear the distinct sound of the Dark Eldar weapons, similar to the sound of the one we confiscated. At this point, our group along with Trempan’s start shooting at whatever is moving out of the breach. We just have no idea how many of the foul xenos will be coming.

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Finding Adorjin
Possibly the first time anyone's ever ran TOWARDS a Black Ship

From: Odessa; Adeptus Administratum & Acolyte of the Holy Inquisition, Ordo Hereticus

Blue_Spirit_-_old_lady.jpg Acolyte Odessa reporting in on the cell’s progress through the Adorjin Space Hulk. It was an unnerving segment of our mission to say the least. Our resolve was tested and obviously found very plentiful. The encounter with the “Blue spirit” continued with my companions floundering around with the bizarre rose-smelling doll and fruitlessly shooting the spirit. Meanwhile, despite my grievous injuries from the unearthly beasts, I was dealing with the spirit most adroitly, setting it on psychic fire and mercilessly pounding it with blasts of bio lightning! Eventually it fled from me but not before making some attempt to become one with my mind. I was far too much for it of course, but it’s presence seemed to linger with me for some time after, providing me with visions of dubious value, most likely related to my usual(empire approved) daymares.

After defeating it, we carried on towards the presumed direction of the black ship. In a gigantic cavern seemingly constructed of rock and ships, we encountered a ghostly child which I bravely confronted with the help of the brother sergeant. Luckily it was not hostile and warned us of some unknown horror, at which time I sensed a warp related braying and crying in the distance. We chose to move along swiftly to reduce the likelihood of horror.

We moved on through airless corridors lined with metal collars attached to the walls. We weren’t sure of their purpose but decided that they were no good, and the brother sergeant removed them from the walls. Nearby the only way for us to continue was through a small hatch. Arion led the way and swiftly discovered a Dark Eldar lurking in the room beyond. It hurled some disturbing item which caused Intios and I to be incapacitated, myself briefly, Intios for a good long while. After recovering I assisted Arion with dispatching the xenos which seemed to be a subject of intense hatred on the part of Arion. Once I was helping with my powers of psychic shutdown Arion had no difficulty stabbing it to death. My compatriots were excited but clueless about the pistol it had been wielding.

Carrying on, we were assaulted in a corridor by two more of the horrible warp beasts which had wounded me earlier. Being quite important in dealingCalculus-Logi_Trempan.jpg with these creatures, I made sure I was not further injured and successfully provided psychic weakening so that my companions could deal with them and overall we had no great difficulty dispatching the monstrous things. Not so easily did we deal with the horrifying wave of beasts to come. From the other end of the corridor an indescribable mass of the things was coming towards us. We realized we had no chance of fighting them but only the brother sergeant acted with the needed conviction. He guided the rest of us down a side corridor then gave his life for us and the emperor by slowing the tide.

We scurried away from the issue so as to not waste the sacrifice of our companion. After passing through several more chambers we finally reached a cavern which contained the black ship we had been seeking in the distance. The horde of warp beasts were at our heels the entire way so we continued swiftly down a stone corridor which seemed to lead to the ship. Astoundingly we encountered another group of acolytes who had seemingly been sent on the same mission. The lack of confidence in our abilities by our Inquisitors was quite surprising to me. Our groups were able to convince each other that were not a threat and agreed to join forces for the time being.

We entered the black ship just as the horde reached us but strange sigils carved on to the black ship appeared to push them back and we were finally Sergeant_Forden.jpgsafe for the time being. I noticed that the psychic suppression sigils on the ship had however been defaced and were inactive. We carried on into the ship, hoping that we were near to discovering the fate of Adorjin. We encountered the ghostly girl again on the ship, she seemed excited to introduce us to some “others”, though seemed worried that we were Inquisitors. We did not reveal our association with the inquisition in order to first gather more information.

Shortly after that we came upon the others she was referring to, a large collection of ghostly people we deduced to be the spirits of the psychers-in-training who had died on the ship. One of them appeared to be the leader and called himself Crovus. He began indifferent towards us but slowly became more convinced we were associated with the inquisition which he took quite poorly. We were concerned some kind of confrontation was about to begin which we had no interest in engaging with, when another spirit interrupted Crovus, telling him to not bother the living. We hope this is Enginseer_Molochan.jpgsuccessful, the spirits should be put to rest, there but for the grace of the Emperor go I.

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Determine Inquisitor Adorjin's Fate & Retrieve the Luminous Reproach
"We're not alone"

Dominator-Class Cruiser Magnus EcthelionShip_-_Imperial_Navy_battleships.jpg The members of our Ordo Hereticus Cell, transiently seconded to Inquisitor Nazauth Karkalla of Ordo Xenos – but now on a Ordo Hereticus Investigation, answerable to Inquisitor Vownus Kaede – had just lifted off the roof of Tricorn Palace in an Imperial Navy orbital shuttle . Ensign Vermian greets them, having recognized the acolytes from when he was shuttling Inquisitorial forces off of Ambulon.

Upon their arrival to the Dominator-Class Cruiser, Magnus Ecthelion, the Cell is hustled to a well-appointed ready-room; it’s obvious from the frenetic activity level that the ship is on high alert. In short order, Captain Sepheyr greets them via hologram; he has a bionic filter over his mouth, his skin in covered in fine circuitry that extends into an elegant augmetic skullcap that flares behind him…presumably leading to mechanisms off-screen. A large wallDeathwatch_Pauldron.jpg of the room flickers to show a view of the space hulk and the Captain introduces Brother-Sergeant Agamorr, who briefs them on their mission.

Approximately three days prior, a cadre of sanctioned Inquisitorial psykers registered an unusually strong disturbance of the aethyr about the Golgenna Reach. They were unable to verify what their senses were detecting until naval telemetry confirmed the emergence of a space hulk which they code-named Twilight. The Twilight had entered realspace on a trajectory that would take it directly into Scintilla’s upper atmosphere. The recommended course of action when dealing with a hulk that is too near a planetary system is to eliminate it, which the Navy prepared to do. However, soon after detection, a transponder signal emerged from the heart of of this hulk, an encoded signal that the codifiers of the Inquisition identified as carrying the call sign of Inquisitor Adorjin, whom had been missing for over six centuries…her fate unknown. The dense material of the Twilight in conjunction with the unusual spatial anomalies made an exact sensor reading of the interior of the hulk impossible. The Inquisition ordered the Battlefleet to give their agents as much time as possible to determine Adorjin’s fate and retrieve the holy weapon that she once carried, the Luminous Reproach. They had just over fifteen hours to determine the source of the signal, secure the blade if possible and depart before the Navy destroys the hulk.

The Brother-Sergeant led them to the enormous shuttle bay where their transportation was, the assault Boat Helios. It was a small vessel capable of latching onto the side of the space hulk with a series of magnetic clamps, then blasting through its hull with melta charges. There they afforded themselves of the ships armory, equipment locker and, since none of them had experience with voidsuits, were given a Map_-_Golgenna_Reach_map.jpgcrash course in their operation. They all donned either a Selenite Voidsuit or Navy Boarding Armor, with a voidsuit built-in. They were given a Vox-Caster modified by Naval enginseers, who hoped it would allow them communicate to the fleet from inside the hulk. Finally, they were given a scan of what little the fleet’s sensors was able to discern about the inside layout of the hulk, and the path that seemed most likely to get them to the location they believed Adorjin’s signal was coming from. After Tech-Priest Volwyr of the Adeptus Mechanicus completed an elaborate unfamiliar chanted blessing of the group & the Helios, they lifted off. Since the acolytes had no one with particular skill in piloting the craft, the Brother-Sergeant took the controls.

It would be about 45 minutes to get to the Twilight and they talked a bit with the space marine about his background & even any knowledge he might have had about the heretical outfit the Cell was just investigating, the Serrated Query. During this ride, with time to gaze at the hulk through the viewfinder, they noticed with concern that portions of the hulk in your peripheral vision would appear to move and even go translucent at times. Intios claimed to the others that for a moment he thought he saw another small ship also in the vicinity of the Twilight.

Twilight_Space_Hulk.pngSeveral thousand kilometers from their destination, moments after receiving a vox transmission from the fleet about a new energy reading from the hulk, a battery from one of the ships making up the hulk opened fire on them. The acolytes were able to strap in without mishap as the Brother-Sergeant successfully evaded the fire and aimed the boat full-throttle at the Twilight. The Emperor was with them & they clamped to the hulk and breached its hull with the melta charges.

They stepped through to find the familiar look of an Imperial ship’s corridor, an absence of gravity, their sealed suits’ instruments indicating there was breathable atmosphere & a light frost covering everything from floor to ceiling. The latter was perhaps most disturbing to the assassin of the group, as he heard the light crunch of his magnetic boots. They successfully tested the modified Vox-Caster & quickly set off.

They made their way through 90 minutes of hallways & corridors before entering a 15-10 meter room with two other doors & several curious items. At the last possible second, Brother-Sergeant Agamorr, Intios & Odessa all spotted the burning eyes of whatever leaped out at the group an instant later. The creature that leapt at Arion was nothing but bones & sinew. The one that charged the Brother-Sergeant resembled a Mastiff canine with its skin peeled off. The one that clawed at the psyker resembled a panther made of flickering flames.

Their claws & fangs were incorporeal, penetrating armor without impediment. The space marine was bitten in the leg but then smashed his skinless foe into the middle of the room, where it lay motionless. Arion took claws across his chest, causing red globules of blood to float away, before slowing his opponent with a couple of well placed sword strikes. The Brother-Sergeant finished it off with a crackling strike of his thunderhammer. Odessa fared the worst, sustaining deep fang wounds to the midsection before dispatching her hellion. Red blood & blue ichor globules floated throughout the room, as the group caught its breath at the conclusion.

First aid was administered to all who needed it – everyone but Intios tried out the new advanced medi-kits they acquired from the Magnus Ecthelion’s equipment locker. Next they investigated the objects in the room. Arion called over the Adept to see what he could make of a metal platform. The Emperor’s sage figured out it was a hover cart, of sorts. Arion then pried open a wood carton that had unintelligible block writing on its side. All were flooded by the olfactory fragrance of roses – most eerie since they were all in sealed void-suits! The only contents was a small jar with a stick-doll of a girl holding a small rose. The jar was transparent, though the sides appeared dirty or tinted.Doll_in_Jar.jpg

Arion determined to open the jar. Exhibiting proper professional paranoia, the group took cover and assumed lines of fire. The blademaster opened the jar, set it on the floor and stepped back. After about ten seconds the previously dirty looking jar was completely clear. Then standing there was a bluish spirit of an older angry woman. The control console in the middle of the room suddenly uprooted from the floor and hurled at Arion, who barely flung himself out of the way in time. Intios dropped to his hands and knees and sobbed with terror at the sight of this unnatural apparition. The psyker, easily the worst injured of the group, passed out cold. The Brother-Sergeant promptly put two Astartes bolter shells on target, which seemingly passed right through the spirit and took a sizable chunk out of the wall. Arion’s sword passed right through it, as well. Odessa came to & opening just one eye, set alight a warpish flame inside the spirit…which then turned from bluish to a flickering orange hue. The psyker felt the spirit looking at her through the warpish plane. Brother-Sergeant charged with a mighty swing of his huge powered mallet, taking out another chunk out of the wall as his weapon passed through the target. At the assassin’s urging, he then smashed the jar, which seemingly had no effect. The massive space marine then scooped up the pulverized remains of the jar.

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The Ambulon Temple is Now CLOSED
Who knew the Inquisition had happy hours

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From: Intios; Adeptus Administratum & Acolyte of the Holy Inquisition, Ordo Hereticus

My Investigation Notes
Theodosia was able to call in reinforcements into the church. Our team trades las, autogun and grenade fire with the newly arrived Joyous_Choir_Temple_Battle.jpgreinforcements. Odessa and I take cover from Theodosia’s power sword. Arion was able to defeat the cargo servitor with the clamp claw. The Cell’s assassin engaged Theodosia in extended melee combat, while the rest of us continued to battle his minions. Finally, the large augmented heretic wounded Arion with his crackling sword. As the reinforcements pour out from the basement, we hear a series of explosions coming from below. Theodosia and his band of mercenaries quickly move to egress the temple. In the waning moments of the foes’ presence, the already wounded Arion turns a corner & is riddled by autogun fire, dropping him with grievous injuries to his leg.

As we are in no condition to pursue, Odessa and I decide to investigate the basement. We quickly find a multitude of servitors attending to Ambulon_JC_Temple_-_basement.jpga makeshift assembly line. Upon closer review, we can see that brains are being extracted from humans while the remaining body parts are being used to build more servitors. Odessa quickly discerns that the bodies are those of psykers. Close examination of the servitors shows that one was formerly Saia Strophes, Laurent’s niece that we have been looking for.

We are soon beset by a group of Magistratum officers. We identify ourselves as Inquisition and ask for their assistance. We gave them, Raneiro Bassi, as our contact in Hive Sibellus. With a quick blood test, they confirmed our identities and proceeded to help us search the temple. Of interest were the rooms upstairs. The last room upstairs had more security measures than the others. Once the doors were open, we found an office that was later identified as Theodosia’s. His main desk was booby trapped. We dismissed the Magistratum & contacted Acolyte Bassi to bring in Inquisitorial assistance. They disarmed two traps, one that poisoned & another wired to a large promethium bomb.

What we found in Theodosia’s desk was a plethora of information regarding the overall organization of the Serrated Query. We found files related to a major client of the Serrated Query. They had entered into a contract with the SQ to obtain technology from an Adranti planet, that they provided the location of (however, that location wasn’t mentioned in the file) There was a document called Defense of the Future: A Logical Discourse. It talked about how technology progress is essential if man is to progress. I recognized it as the core treatise for the Logicians, a heretical cult long hunted by the Inquisition & arch-enemies of the Adeptus Mechanicus. The file also detailed that the Harmony Meters used by the Joyous Choir were created using Adranti technology.

Within a sealed file of Theodosia’s, there was mention of another unnamed client. This new unnamed client had discovered Hesiod’s Wake’s peculiar absence of Imperial contact and had used this to blackmail the Serrated Query – silence about Hesiod’s Wake in exchange for information on the technology being acquired for the Serrated Query’s other client. The Serrated Query had planted their operative by the name of Azeth Hartok onto Hesiod’s Wake many years prior. We knew him as Jaleb Samtoll. There were details of how Martein Kathrinka was blackmailed to have Samtoll be Chief Counselor; the Serrated Query had learned that Viceroy Martein had an affair with Ignis. There was also mention of a previous agent on Hesiod’s Wake even before Hartok/Samtoll. This unnamed client had later further demanded that a provided Tarot deck be delivered to Administratum Adept Smyk that, as we know, eventually corrupted the Inquisitorial diviner Aristarchus. Lastly, the file mentioned how this Adept Smyk has unexpectedly turned up on Hesiod’s Wake seeking sanctuary from pursuit.

With this information, we returned to Sibellus and passed our information onto Septimus Dexter, Laurent Strophes and Inquisitor Karkalla. We were given some downtime in order to let Arion convalesce from his critical injuries and for the Inquisition to process all of the collected data. Several weeks later, we were called to Tricorn Palace by Inquisitor Karkalla.
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The gathering of Inquisitors was arranged by Inquisitor Artanyan. Artanyan is the Inquisitor that Acolyte Bassi works for. We also met Inquisitor Glavius Wroth. In various conversations as we wandered the room, we heard curious mention of a renegade Inquisitor Felroth Gelt, that the Inquisition had apparently issued a warrant for. Inquisitor Wroth seemed frustrated by the name, commenting that Gelt “was a ghost”. Artanyan had congratulated us on our discovery of the Xothic Blood Locusts, expressing surprise that our cell had not lost anyone in our contact with the xenos. Apparently this Gelt, before going renegade had lost more than one of his retinue to the winged monsters upon their first discovery.

We had a conversation with Acolyte Bassi, who explained that these causal Inquisitorial gatherings were very unusual, but his boss Inquisitor Artanyan was of the opinion that they were worthwhile. There was some overheard talk about a dangerous heretic referred to as the Burning Princess and a noted Witch Hunter named Fhendahl. Finally, we heard the name of Inquisitor Silas Marr, and how he’d been invited but didn’t come to no one’s surprise.

After hearing these bits and pieces of conversations amongst the Inquisitors and their retinue, a new figure walks in and gets the attention of Wroth and Karkalla. After a brief exchange, Inquisitor Wroth motions to our team to join their conversation. The new figure, who we heard addressed as Whitlock, continued to talk about a space hulk within the planet capitol’s space. From their comments, there apparently was no precedent for this – but, naturally, the Imperial Navy quickly moved to destroy the space hulk before it entered the atmosphere of Scintilla. However, Ordo Hereticus had given the temporary order to stand down.

Whitlock explained that he had serendipitously been in a Tricorn communications room when Inquisitor Vownus Kaede, Ordo Hereticus, had ordered the Navy to stand down. From what Whitlock could ascertain, the curious order had been given because of the presence of a Black Ship in the space hulk. The Black Ships being part of Ordo Hereticus, it appeared that Hereticus was taking point on an investigation of it. However, for reasons unknown it became apparent that Ordo Malleus thought they might be leading the investigation. Whitlock said that Hereticus was scrambling to field a team to leave immediately, given the intense time restriction, with the space hulk hurtling towards Scintilla.

Inquisitor Wroth, having just learned about our Cell from Karkalla, suggested to the group of Inquisitors that perhaps Ordo Xenos could send their “own” team, meaning us, since we are actually Ordo Hereticus on loan to Inquisitor Karkalla. He also pointed out, seemingly thinking it couldn’t hurt, that Kaede was a member of Order Xenos before moving to Ordo Hereticus.

We (and seemingly Inquisitor Karkalla) were certainly surprised at this turn of events, but suddenly Inquisitor Karkalla was leading us to the shuttle bay at the top of Tricorn Palace at a dead sprint to meet Inquisitor Vownus Kaede. After confirming our association with Ordo Hereticus, Inquisitor Kaede ordered us aboard a nearby Navy shuttle…the firing up as soon as we were aboard.Ship_4_-_shuttle.jpg

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Divine Disagreement Settled with Blades & LasGuns
Inquisitor Karkalla might call it "aggressive negotiation"

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From: Intios; Adeptus Administratum & Acolyte of the Holy Inquisition, Ordo Hereticus

My Investigation Notes
The three of us made our way to the rearward part of Ambulon. We found the Joyous Choir facility fairly easily. A quick scan of the area showed that the Joyous Choir building was not attached to the other structures like everywhere else. There was a fairly open courtyard with some Magistratum type personnel walking through. We did notice that there were a few people walking about the courtyard that never left.

It was decided that I would approach the temple and one of the people walking about the courtyard. In order to be more discreet, Arion and Odessa left and found a nearby café where they would follow my progress via vox. As I approach three gentlemen standing about 10 meters from the temple, two of them walk off. The one remaining identified himself as Nathaniel and confirmed that this was the Joyous Choir temple. He told me to feel free and use the main hall or meditation rooms for quiet contemplation on becoming True.

I walked around the front and side of the temple and could not find any way of getting in through the top of the structure. Inside the temple I find a few locals in the main hall in quiet prayer. There is a balcony facing the main hall where I caught glimpses of someone watching me. One side of the main hall has a stained glass window that stretches over two stories. The other side lead to the meditation rooms. There were a few doors that were locked which lead me to believe that there was either a sub-level or another level up which I could not get into.

I join Arion and Odessa at the café and we decide to look for tall structures that have a view of the temple. We found a library which had a direct view. We see a small patch panel above the second floor of the temple. We decide to return after midnight to enter. Our climb up and into the temple was uneventful. We enter the panel door and find ourselves in one of the side rooms on the second floor. This is the balcony floor which I saw earlier in the day. Inside the last room on this floor, Arion could hear two voices and what sounded like the handling of weapons. We decide to go down to the main floor.

I tell the others of the meditation rooms and the main hall. There was one door in the end of the hall that I could not open. The use of the Auspex sensor showed two people inside the last room. We open the door and quickly dispatch the two people, who seemed to be dressed like the Pressure Point mercenaries that attacked House Strophes. We quickly search the room and soon hear the sounds of multiple footsteps coming towards us. Doors slam open and grenades start flying from both sides.

It is Arion who first exits the room and comes face to face with Theodosia. The same person we encountered in the Hustle and in the Alabaster Court. Grenade volleys are once again exchanged. I step out of the room into the main hall and see one person running away. I hit him with my lasgun but he is still able to run and call for possible reinforcements.

At this very moment, I hear the sound of a power sword and then a blow that nearly knocks the breath out of me. Theodosia managed to flank us and get into our room. I see Odessa light Theodosia up with her bio-lighting directly in the chest. Theodosia takes the hits and shrugs them right off. I fire a semi-auto burst that he is able to dodge. At this point, we all know. It’s either him or us.

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