Bjorn the Fell Handed
- "God-Emperor? Calling him a god is why this mess started in the first place."
- --Bjorn the Fell Handed's apt summary on why everything went wrong in the Great Crusade
Bjorn the Fell Handed (Imperial Gothic: Bear) is a Dreadnought of the Space Wolves, and the single oldest loyal Space Marine alive (or, well, at least still in active service. Because, err..., well you know). No relation to Sigmar's dad.
Bjorn is a Space Marine of the Space Wolves chapter, and (by virtue of almost dying and being interred in a Dreadnought) is the oldest living being in the Imperium who hasn't turned to Chaos, after the Big E himself (cough Cypher). He is so old, in fact, that he fought alongside Leman Russ in battle and even saw the Emperor before the events of the Horus Heresy, meaning he's been around for at least ten thousand years. Following the disappearance of Russ, Bjorn became the first Great Wolf, the Chapter Master of the Space Wolves, until he was injured. In light of his advanced years, the majority of his time is spent dormant in stasis, but is awakened every century or so such that the Space Wolves might learn from his ancient wisdom. In practical terms, this means they pester him to tell them stories about Leman Russ. Since Bjorn's only waking hours are universally spent this way (unless there's some battle so big that Bjorn absolutely must be deployed to it like in the first War of Armageddon), he does his best to appear more and more senile every time he is awoken in the dim hope they will eventually stop asking him about the old stories.
Comedian George Carlin would have classified Bjorn as an "Old Fuck". It is kind of like a "Fat fuck".
The Horus Heresy series has supplied some new Bjorn fluff recently. He starts off out of kilter with his Legion- really good at killing shit, but not so much at the whole drunken barbarian thing. Then Prospero happens, he does some cool shit and the ensuing "what have we done" gloom brings the Legion closer to his mood. Then he impresses Russ by trying to solo a Contemptor, and things start to escalate.
Tales of Bjorn
Storytime with Bjorn the Fellhanded
The familiar hissing of servos being powered up after decades of idleness filled the echoing sarcophagus he was trying to rest in. As his senses engaged, once more allowing him to see and hear the outside world, the familiar chanting filled his near-dead ears once more.
"Ah, dammit", he thought, "it's that time of the century again".
The language of the Space Wolves' rune priests was a harsh, guttural dialect appropriate for harsh people with excesses of phlegm, and if this lot were like the last lot, that was an accurate description.
Oh well, time to put on the show.
He cleared his throat and prepared his deep, tired voice for use once more. After all, if he made it seem like he was slowly losing his grip on reality, they might let him sleep longer.
"WHO AWAKENS BJORN?" he spoke into the microphone, letting the vox casters on the Dreadnought echo it out into the surrounding room. He could already see who was awakening him - the little gimp with the wolf-pubes for a beard - but he had to follow the ritual, make it look all authentic or they would start asking questions.
"Oh mighty Bjorn, the Fell-Handed-" ahh shit, he hated that nickname, "we awaken thee to help us remember the past, the forgotten and the sacrificed, those who embody the spirit of the Wolf."
Spirit of the Wolf? That bollocks was new. Normally they went on about the spirit of the warrior and shit.
"YOU WISH TO HEAR THE TALES AGAIN, DO YOU?" he recited, having said this shit at least half a dozen times in the past.
"Yes, oh Venerable one, please, tell us." The pube-faced-tard and the collection of ugly dipshits behind him bowed in supplication. He really, REALLY hated having to tell all these tales. Imagine being asleep, and only being woken up every few hours to tell stories, then being put back to sleep. That was his fate, and he was starting to get sick of it. And they always wanted to hear about fucking Leman Russ, too. Woe betide any fucker stupid enough to ask about Leman Russ.
"FIND ME AN AUDIENCE OF LOYAL WARRIORS, STRONG AND TRUE, WHO MIGHT WISH TO HEAR THE TALES."
Gythor was excited. More than excited, he was ecstatic. He was still a Blood Claw, having not yet earned the opportunity to become a fully fledged Grey Hunter in glorious combat, but he was privileged to be one of those alive at the right time to hear the tales of Bjorn, the Fell-Handed. One of the oldest Space Marines still alive, one who saw the Emperor himself! He would hear the glorious tales spoken from the mans own lips - well, vox casters - of great legends that had been fading to the years.
While he waited he shared an ale with his packmates, but a hush settled over the crowd as the heavy footfalls of a Dreadnought could be heard approaching. All eyes turned towards the massive oak doors of the great hall as it approached, step after step, agonizingly slowly. Just when it sounded like it was right outside the noise stopped. Second after second ticked by, quiet having settled over the room like a blanket over a frightened child. First it was seconds, then it stretched into minutes. Finally a voice down the back of the room spoke up.
"Do we... open the door for him, or someth-" He was interrupted by the door of the great hall, which had stood for a millennia, essentially exploding inwards, shattering into a thousand pieces and flinging themselves at the assembled Space Wolves. The Blood Claws near the door found themselves with cuts from flying wood all over their faces, one collapsing to the ground with a shard of wood the size of his fist embedded in his eye.
"Lucky fucker," thought Gythor, "he's going to get SUCH a fucking cool scar."
"I AM HERE" spoke Bjorn, the words echoing out through the great hall, emerging lifelessly from the vox caster mounted on the Dreadnought. A great cheer rose from the masses of Space Wolves, before they chanted their traditional song of joy, repeating the word 'Wolf' at varying pitches in an almost orchestral sounding song. For a second Gythor thought he heard the vox casters on the Dreadnought mutter 'what the fu-', but he knew such a thing could not be right. Bjorns voice was as powerful as thunder, a mech like that did not mumble.
The Space Wolves cleared the path for the enormous, venerable Dreadnought to pace down the length of the enormous hall, his pounding footsteps knocking aside ale tankards within a few meters of him as he passed.
Gythor held his breath in excitement as the Dreadnought reached the head of the hall and turned to face the assembled masses.
"TELL ME, OF WHICH STORY DO YOU WISH TO HEAR?" boomed his dead, powerful voice. A thousand responses rose at once, Wolves shouting their answers all together.
The high rune priest, who had followed along behind Bjorn without even being noticed, held his hand out for silence. "Brothers, please! You, Grey-Hunter Rynold, you may ask first." The marine singled out rose from his seat, helmet clutched under his arm with pride.
"Noble Bjorn the Fell-handed-" an echoed grunt of annoyance echoed around the hall, but no one seemed to notice, "-tell us more of our glorious founder, tell us of the greatness of Leman Russ himself!" Rynold thrust his free hand into the air as if he had achieved some glorious victory in asking his question. From the cheers of agreement of his fellow marines, many felt he had. As the cheers died off, it took a few seconds to realize Bjorn was silent. He had not yet answered.
The high Rune priest cleared his throat once. "Uh, mighty Bjorn, do you need the question repea-"
"YOU COCKSUCKERS" bellowed the noble dreadnought. Silence answered his words, until a few of the long fangs near the front of the hall started chuckling, obviously thinking it was a joke. "DON'T FUCKING LAUGH. DO I SOUND LIKE I'M MAKING A JOKE?!" Again, silence answered his words. "SERIOUSLY, I'M WOKEN UP ONCE A FUCKING HUNDRED YEARS TO TELL YOU FUCKERS OF THE PAST, AND EACH TIME I SEE YOU, YOU'VE FUCKED OVER HISTORY EVEN WORSE THAN IT WAS BEFORE!! LEMAN RUSS WAS AN ASSHOLE!"
Again, silence. The Rune Priest cleared his throat. "Perhaps we should allow noble Dreadnought Bjorn some more rest, shall w-"
"NO, ENOUGH FUCKING REST. YOU ARE ALL GOING TO HEAR ABOUT WHY LEMAN RUSS WAS A FUCKING DICK. SERIOUSLY. A DICK. YOU WANT TO KNOW WHY I'M CALLED 'THE FELL-HANDED'? HUH? DO YA'? THE FUCKER CAUGHT ME JERKING OFF BEHIND A BIG ROCK ONE NIGHT ABOUT TWENTY METERS FROM THE REST OF THE DETACHMENT! HE KICKED THE ROCK AWAY AND SHOUTED, 'LO, IT SEEMS HE IS BESTING A MIGHTY FELL-BEAST WITH ONLY HIS HAND!"
Again, silence. This time broken by a slight snickering from some of the younger Blood Claws.
"I FUCKING HEARD THAT, YOU CUNTS. YOU FUCKING WOLF FUCKERS. YEAH, DON'T THINK I DON'T NOTICE YOUR GROWING OBSESSION WITH WOLVES. SERIOUSLY, WHEN I WAS AROUND WE WERE JUST CRAZY FUCKERS WHO RIPPED OUT OUR ENEMIES' THROATS WITH OUR TEETH. NOW YOU'RE FUCKING RIDING WOLVES INTO BATTLE. YOU KNOW WHAT ELSE YOU CAN RIDE INTO BATTLE? FUCKING BIKES! MAYBE EVEN A FUCKING BIKE THAT HAS GUNS ATTACHED!"
Silence dominated the room in between Bjorn's words. A few of the Wolf-riders cleared their throats nervously and patted their wolf companions, all of whom had a thousand yard stare and the haunted look of molestation victims.
"YOU FUCKERS THINK YOU KNOW LEMAN RUSS? THE GUY WAS A DOUCHE. HIS STRATEGIES WERE 'YEAH, YOU GUYS GO CHARGE THE ENEMY, I'LL SECURE THIS SHACK WITH THESE BITCHES', AND HE WASN'T TALKING ABOUT FEMALE WOLVES."
The high rune priest held his head in his armored hands for a second, before standing up once more. "Mighty Bjorn, perhaps we shou-"
"HE WAS TALKING ABOUT WOMEN. YOU KNOW WHY HE HATED... WHAT'S HIS NAME, THE DARK ANGELS. THAT GEEK, WHAT WAS HIS NAME AGAIN?"
The Rune Priest, now resigned to this being the second worst Bjorn story-time ever, answered, "Lion El'Jonson, mighty Bjorn."
"YEAH, FUCKING LION EL', HE WAS A DECENT MAN. HE AND LEMAN HATED EACH OTHER BECAUSE LION ENJOYED BOOKS. YEAH, THAT'S IT. FIRST TIME THEY EVER MET HE WAS READING A BOOK, LEMAN WALKED IN AND SHOUTED 'HEY, I'M LOOKING FOR MY BROTHER PRIMARCH, ALL I SEE IS A BOOK-READING PUSSY'. THEN HELD HIS HAND OUT TO BE BRO-FISTED. NO ONE DID, SO HE SUCKER-PUNCHED LION TO LOOK TOUGH."
Again, only silence, this time broken by the sound of an ale tankard being dropped from numb fingers.
"YEAH, THE GUY WAS A CUNT. WHEN THEY SHOWED HIM THE SCHEMATICS FOR THE LEMAN RUSS TANK, YOU KNOW WHAT HE SAID? HE SAID 'MAKE THE CANNON BIGGER... LIKE MY COCK!' HE DEMANDED THE SCHEMATICS FOR THE PREMIERE TANK OF THE IMPERIAL GUARD BE ALTERED PURELY SO HE COULD MAKE A DICK JOKE!"
The servos of Bjorn's mighty armoured sarcophagus whirred into life as he suddenly started forward, his pounding feet bringing him back towards the door he burst in from. He did not stop as he crushed his way through a two-millennia-old table, and Space Wolves scattered out of his way with each thudding footstep. The entire assembled chapter watched in amazement as the Dreadnought sulked off, stopping only at the door to turn and speak once.
"IF YOU FUCKERS WAKE ME AGAIN, IT BETTER BE TO KILL SOMETHING OR ASK ABOUT ACTUAL HEROES, NOT BITCH-STEALING ASSHOLES." And with that, Bjorn walked away, followed by hastily running Rune Priests.
Bjorn's Happy End
Slowly his thoughts arose from their centuries of slumber once more. Chemical stimulants pumped in through the tubes connected to his sarcophagus and washed away the residual grogginess of stasis sleep. The sound of servos activating, lifting his armored shell from its resting position into an upright stance, heralded the sudden explosion of light that filled his vision before clarifying into a familiar scene. Apothecaries and TechMarines stood before him, data-slates and tools in their hands, and one white-haired marine ahead of all the rest in the center of his field of view. The decorations on his armor identified him as Brother-Captain. Something seemed a touch unusual about the whole scenario, but he couldn't quite put his power claw on it. No matter. It seemed the time had come again.
“WHO AWAKENS BJORN?” he rumbled through the Dreadnought’s speakers. “IS IT TIME FOR WAR?” he added hopefully.
“It is indeed time for war, mighty Bjorn,” the Captain responded. “We have awakened you to do battle with our foes!”
“FIGURES. IT’S NEVER TIME FOR – WAIT, WHAT?”
There was a stunned silence from all in the room. It lasted a few seconds before the Brother-Captain broke it by clearing his throat. “Uhm, yes, ancient one, it is time for war. That-that’s not a problem is it?”
Bjorn did not respond for another several moments. When he did, his words were slow and uncertain. “YOU…DON’T WANT ME TO TELL YOU TALES OF THE OLD TIMES? OF LEMAN RUSS?”
“I… I suppose you could, but to be honest, venerable warrior, it is your skill in combat that we were hoping you would display.”
Again, a pause. A pair of apothecaries at the back of the group began to mutter to each other. “Did we get the ritual wrong?” “I heard them say he was going senile… he probably doesn't even remember what he’s supposed to do-“
A sudden booming noise echoed around the armory chamber. It was a moment before anyone realized that the sound was that of laughter, issuing forth from the Dreadnaught’s speakers.
“VERY WELL!” Bjorn announced, once his fit of chuckling had subsided. “I SHALL DO BATTLE ONCE MORE!” The worried expressions on the faces of the assembled Marines immediately turned to smiles and relief.
“Of course, great one!” grinned the Captain. “It will be an honour to fight at your side!” Bjorn was ecstatic. He was being awoken to actually fight, nobody wanted him to tell stories about fucking Leman Russ, and not once so far had anyone referred to him by his Emperor-forsaken full title. This century was shaping up well so far! If this luck kept up, they’d be celebrating their upcoming victories in battle with a complete sacred machine-oil application administered by a pair of Adepta Sororitas –
“Uhm, mighty one? You sort of zoned out for a moment there… something about twins?”
“WHAT? NOTHING. WHEN DO WE FIGHT!?” Bjorn demanded, changing the subject quickly. “LEAD ME TO OUR SHIPS THAT WE MIGHT TRAVEL TO WHEREVER OUR ENEMIES DWELL!”
“We are already aboard our Battle Barge and orbiting our target,” the Captain informed him. “In a short space of time we will be in position to drop assault pods and initiate the battle. If you would follow me to the pod bays, we shall prepare to depart immediately.” Ah! So they were already aboard a vessel, and not in the fortress as he had expected. No wonder the situation had seemed unusual when he awoke, for he realized he did not recognize his surroundings. Bjorn approved; anxious to fight as he was, the prospect of a lengthy and boring voyage to the field of battle would not have been a welcome one. With a hiss and a whir, his Dreadnought’s motor systems roared into life and he made to follow the Brother-Captain.
“LEAD ON, BROTHER. I DO NOT RECOGNIZE THIS VESSEL NOR KNOW ITS LAYOUT. WHICH SHIP HAS THE FORTUNE OF CARRYING US INTO BATTLE?”
The Captain mumbled something quietly and the other assembled marines looked nervously at each other.
“BROTHER, I HAVE SEEN THE PASSING OF TEN MILLENNIA AND MY HEARING IS NOT WHAT IT ONCE WAS. PLEASE SPEAK UP.”
“We – we are aboard the Litany of Fury, ancient one.”
“HM. A NEW ADDITION TO THE FLEET, IT SEEMS. THE CHAPTER IS DOING WELL. AND SURPRISINGLY CLEAN!” Bjorn remarked, looking upon the gleaming surfaces where hazy red reflections of his and the other Marines’ armor could be seen. “I EXPECTED EVERYTHING TO BE COVERED IN WOLF SHI- RED. WHY AM I RED?”
“Oh, shit.” Muttered a Tech-Marine, before one of his companions poked him in the side with a mechadendrite.
The Brother-Captain turned to glare at him for a moment before turning back to Bjorn. “Why wouldn't you be red, revered Bjorn? Red has always been the colour of our chapter –“
“SILENCE!” Bjorn commanded, and the group fell quiet. Bjorn took a few steps over to a convenient nearby bulkhead and experimentally scraped one of his arms against the surface before rotating it into his field of view. A familiar bright blue could be seen peeking out from the scratched layer of red paint applied over it.
Now, Bjorn had indeed lived for longer than any other in the Imperium could claim, and the priests of the Space Wolves all believed the long years had driven him senile, but in truth his mental faculties were as sharp as they had ever been. Sometimes, however, they simply needed time to warm up after a long rest. He turned to face the red-armored group, noting the bird and blood drop iconography featured on their shoulder-plates and the banners adorning the room.
“Now, mighty Bjorn, we can explain,” the Captain began, but Bjorn silenced him with a shout.
“SHUT UP! I’M THINKING.”
This was not something they had expected. All stood worriedly as they waited for Bjorns thoughts to reach a conclusion.
“…HOW DO YOU FEEL ABOUT WOLVES?”
There was some conferral. Eventually the Brother-Captain stepped forward again and said “We… are… neutral on the subject of wolves?”
“GOOD. I HATE THE FUCKING THINGS.”
Bjorn leaned forward, as much as was possible for a Dreadnought to do, until he teetered precariously over the Brother-Captain and the slightest tremor from the engines of the ship risked condemning the unfortunate marine to a crushing death. He spoke.
“NO WOLVES. NO QUESTIONS ABOUT LEMAN RUSS. ABSOLUTELY NO REFERENCES TO FELL HANDS. ANYBODY WHO ASKS ME A QUESTION ABOUT THE OLD TIMES IS GOING TO BE USED AS PAINT TO HELP FIX THIS SHITTY JOB YOU’VE DONE ON ME,” Bjorn rumbled. “THOSE ARE MY TERMS. AGREE AND I’LL PRETEND NOT TO NOTICE WHAT YOU THIEVING LITTLE BASTARDS HAVE DONE. DEAL?”
The Captain nodded frantically.
“GOOD. NOW WHERE ARE THE FUCKING ASSAULT PODS?” Bjorn demanded, spinning his power claw and returning to a normal stance, mirth creeping back into his voice. This could turn out to be a very good century indeed.
Bjorn's Happy End-2
"YOU COCKSUCKERS" bellowed the noble Dreadnought. Silence answered his words, until a few of the scouts near the front of the hall started chuckling, obviously thinking it was a joke. "DON'T FUCKING LAUGH. DO I SOUND LIKE I'M MAKING A JOKE?!" Again, silence answered his words. "SERIOUSLY, I'M WOKEN UP ONCE A FUCKING HUNDRED YEARS TO TELL YOU FUCKERS OF THE PAST, AND EACH TIME I SEE YOU, YOU'VE FUCKED OVER HISTORY EVEN WORSE THAN IT WAS BEFORE!! OUR PRIMARCH WAS AN ASSHOLE!"
Again, silence. Gabriel Angelos cleared his throat. "Perhaps we should allow miraculously recovered Davian Thule some more rest, shall we?"
"NO, ENOUGH FUCKING RE~ YES. SOME MORE REST, INDEED."
"AT THIS POINT, ORNAMENTS AND FILIGREE SOUND FUCKING PEACHY KEEN. BRING BACK THE GILDED RUNES AND SHIT. DRESS ME UP LIKE THAT FUCKING PONCE FULGRIM. JUST LET ME DO BATTLE"
The tech-adepts sighed collectively. This was the worst Story Time with Bjorn anyone could remember. He hadn't even answered the questions senior wolf-lords had asked him.
"YOU STUPID FUCKERS", Bjorn continued, "COVERING EVERYTHING WITH WOLVES. RIDING WOLVES INTO BATTLE. HOWLING AND CHASING STICKS. DO YOU THINK THAT THE WOLF FRIGHTENS THE ENEMIES OF MANKIND?"
Several newer recruits, deafened by Bjorn's tirade and trying to avoid his visor's angry glare, nodded furiously, tongues hanging out and hair bristled.
"YOU HAVE FORGOTTEN WHAT WE ARE. WE ARE ASTARTES! SPACE FUCKING MARINES! GENE-FORGED, BATTLE-HARDENED, IMMORTAL SLAYERS OF MORTALS. THE ENEMIES OF MANKIND ARE NOT AFRAID OF TRAINED BEASTS. THEY SHOULD FEAR US."
Ah, what was the use? They'd forget it all soon anyway, go back to molesting their hairy friends and howling at the moon. They'd be using wolves to pull fucking chariots next. At least the madness hadn't reached all parts of his beloved chapter. The Thunderhawks hadn't been renamed Thunderwolves, at least the last time he....
"WHAT IS THAT?"
The tech-adepts coughed and fidgeted. One ventured a glance at Bjorn and responded.
"What is what, honored lord?"
"THAT... THING ON THE LANDING PAD. WHAT THE FUCKING FUCK IS THAT?"
The noble Stormfang gunship, honoured lord? It has been part of the chapter's armory since..."
"ANOTHER FUCKING WORD AND I WILL TURN YOU INTO A SOUP CAN, TECH-PRIEST. THAT... THING IS NEW. IT IS NEW AND IT LOOKS LIKE A WOLF'S HEAD."
Bjorn tried to remember the names of the great flying machines of his age. Something about this new craft was familiar...
"YOU FUR-FUCKING FUCKERS CUT A CAESTUS ASSAULT RAM IN HALF, DIDN'T YOU? YOU CUT IT IN HALF AND BOLTED SOME ENGINES AND A FUCKTON OF WOLF SYMBOLS TO IT."
Most of the tech-adepts had quietly disappeared, but a few remained, and denied the accusation with desperate, quiet words as Bjorn stalked towards them.
"OH NO? NOT YOU. THEN."
"The Blood Ravens chapter, honoured lord. They said it was a gift."
"THOSE FUCKING MAGPIES. THEY NEVER GIVE GIFTS. WHAT DID THEY TAKE IN RETURN?"
"Honoured lord, the Blood Ravens were kind enough to accept our disused battle-bikes in trade."
"Most of Chapter prefers to ride into battle on their wolves, my lord, and so the bikes are no loss."
"They... they also took several Vindicator tanks and a few relics from our armory."
"SON OF A SHIELDWOMAN'S SPAWN, YOU FUCKERS THOUGHT THAT WAS A GOOD TRADE?"
"My lord, the Chapter as a whole approved it. In the words of Blood Claw Firegar, 'It looks just like a wooooooOAAAAUUUUGH!"
Bjorn stalked back towards the stasis vaults and cryo-tanks, dead tech-adept in hand. He needed a nap. A long, quiet nap. When he woke up, he quietly hoped the whole Chapter would be extinct or too bestial to fight. Then he'd have some peace and quiet.
- This is Bjorn's story as it was ORIGINALLY posted to 4chan, replete with grammar errors, replies, praise, etc. Also, if you have questions or are puzzled by the stories, this link should illuminate things significantly.
- Bjorn the Fell-Handed is NOT exclusively a creation of /tg/ and the Warhammer 40k fandom! Click here to read about his role in the Warhammer 40k universe as originally contrived!