Amberley Vail is a member of the Ordo Xenos of the Inquisition and the lover of Commissar Ciaphas Cain, HERO OF THE IMPERIUM! Unique (at least among existing book characters, except maybe Eisenhorn in his early career) among the members of the Inquisition, she not only displays sanity, but also self-awareness of just how off their rocker everyone else in the Inquisition can be. She goes about the galaxy fighting aliens with a quip and perky sense of humour. But don't let her light air fool you, as she can be as deadly as her position demands. She was the one who realized that Jurgen was a blank, after her sanctioned psyker Rakel had an extreme reaction to physical contact with him. She would later go on to edit the Cain Archives, detailing Cain's private memoirs for use by the Inquisition (after we assume his death given his Admissions in these). Her edits consist of inserting a few other sources of relevant information to provide perspective, and a large number of footnotes whenever she feels she needs to elaborate on something or make additional commentary. As often as not, she just uses them as an excuse to take jabs at the Radicals and members of the Ordo Malleus or defend her vanity when it is implied she ate too much (only once (twice, now)). Whenever the Cain archive goes into times before he met her, she also is prone to insulting (either directly or indirectly) Cain's prior paramours, and may edit out any family-unfriendly information regarding his liaisons with her and others. She also can't resist talking smack about the overly-florid writing of Jenit Sulla and never grasps how Cain (or anyone else) can drink tanna.
She tends to take a light-handed approach in the execution of her Inquisitorial duties. Not for her the purifying pyre of Exterminatus, she often simply arranges to have the appropriate people in the appropriate places at the appropriate time to make a difference and set things right again. Cain and Jurgen often end up crossing paths with her when she makes sure their regiment is the one to arrive at a conflict that calls for their talents. However, she is definitely not shy about getting stuck in when need be and owns a set of ornate power armor that (according to Cain) would make a Techmarine jealous. Apparently, she is pretty good at purging Genestealer nests with it. When Cain first met her, she was undercover as a nightclub singer, and apparently has a beautiful singing voice.
As expected for an Ordo Xenos Inquisitor, she knows a few non-human languages. She is functionally conversant in Tau, knows a little Eldar, and is fully fluent in Orkish (though she admits that is not hard since Orkish apparently consists mainly of a few guttural bellows and smacks to the head for emphasis).
One detail often overlooked about Amberley Vail is how Cain is kind of scared of her half the time. Cain notes her habit and fondness for a classic Imperium kid's song which goes "The Tracks on the Land Raider crush the Heretics" a Grimdark version of "The wheels on the bus go round and round." While she has her charm and cheerfulness, she is a fucking Inquisitor who does not fuck around.
Vail's Entourage & Associates
Cain has on occasions remarked that being crazy seemed to be a requirement for being part of an Inquisitorial Retinue. According to Amberley such a requirement is not strictly the case.
- Rakel: Allegedly well endowed female sanctioned psyker; could pass as attractive if her eyes didn't constantly swim out of focus. Insanity points > 60.
- Mott: Older-than-dirt and heavily augmented autosavant. Could easily snap Ken Jennings' Jeopardy! record if he could learn to shut up.
- Pelton: Former deep cover Arbites operative whose antics started to worry his handlers. Vail recruited him out of the stockade, probably with an eye towards training him as an interrogator.
- Yanbel: An unusually sociable and good humored techpriest.
- Simeon (KIA): Former Commissar who went completely bugnuts and executed too many guardsmen. Now a drugged up berserker with the skills of a stormtrooper and the finesse of an Ogryn.
- Pontius: Ex-Navy fighter jock.
- Zemelda: Street vendor turned inconvenient-bystander-who-knows-too-much turned unwitting recruit. Cain initially thought Vail would just clean up Zemelda with a bolter round. In Dark Heresy she'd be playing the "scum" class and leaning all-in on the blather skill.
- Externus Exterminatus: Vail's starship. Implied to be a small but warp-capable ship with an ex-Navy crew, likely a Viper scout sloop.
- Lucre Foedus: The flagship of the rogue trader Orelius, one of Vail's associates. Like many rogue trading vessels the Lucre is primarily a cargo vessel, but is armed to the level of a cruiser.
|Famous members of the Emperor's Holy Inquisition|
|Ordo Xenos:||Amberley Vail - Bronislaw Czevak - Kyria Draxus - Gregor Eisenhorn - Kryptman |
Solomon Lok - Jena Orechiel - Gideon Ravenor - Velayne Ramaeus - Helynna Valeria - Emil Darkhammer
|Ordo Hereticus:||Adrastia - Katarinya Greyfax - Fyodor Karamazov - Anton Zerbe|
|Ordo Malleus:||Hector Rex - Mordecai Toth - Torquemada Coteaz - Jaq Draco |
Thadus Valconet Horst - Covenant - Ivixia Dannica - Ghankus Dhar