"Send not your foolish and feeble; send me your strong and your sane — Strong for the red rage of battle; sane for I harry them sore; Send me men girt for the combat, men who are grit to the core."
- – The Law of the Yukon: by Robert W. Service
"The Guard dies and does not surrender!"
- – Pierre Cambronne, general of the First French Empire
"Cadia is the end and the beginning."
- – White Dwarf, January 2017
Cadia is, or rather was an Imperial Guard fortress world located right beside the Eye of Terror. Due to being proximate to the only safe warp-passage into and out of the Eye, as well as large Xenos mobilization throughout the sector, it had become a fortress world and a strategic gem for the Imperium of Man.
- 1 The Planet Itself
- 2 Cadia and you
- 3 Redeeming Qualities
- 4 The Fall of Cadia
- 5 We're Not Through Yet, Motherfuckers!
- 6 New Cadia
The Planet Itself
Fortress. That's the one word that can sum up the planet of Cadia. Since it was close neighbors with those nice boys from across the street, Cadia always needed to be on active defense. All the time one had their Lasgun shouldered and was twitching from a combination of going 47 hours without sleep and being raised to be paranoid as fuck. Of course, living basically inside the Eye of Terror, it isn't truly paranoia at all, just common sense.
As far as geography goes, Cadia held a temperate climate not unlike the Holy Hiveworld of Terra. 70 percent of its surface was covered in bodies of water, and its landmasses were covered with bodies of guardsmen.
If it weren't for the anti-warp pylons holding back the expansions of the Eye of Terror, it would have been subjected to Exterminatus long before Abaddon crashed his wrecked Blackstone Fortress into it. The place was a hellhole even before its destruction. It might have been a good vacation spot if you LIKE trenches filled with bodies and tracer fire lighting up your hotel room... on second thought... fuck that shit!
By the way, when we say fortress, we mean fortress. Literally, the entire planet was designed from the ground up to be impossible to invade. First, you have miles of trenches, machine gun bunkers, pillboxes, field guns, and howitzers to dig through. That's the preliminary defensive elements. After that, you have the oh so casual heavy artillery stationed on the enormous walls, with plenty of snipers, riflemen, and angry grandmas throwing anything from macro weapons fire and grenades to rocks and dung buckets at you as you attempt to invade. Once, after losing several million men, you manage to siege the walls and get inside, you enter a labyrinth of streets and corridors, each designed to maximize the defensive advantage of the defending soldiers, meaning that the only way to advance up the street safely is to essentially breach and clear every building, which is also built to function as a small pillbox. Per room. Assuming you clear the ground floor with less than 110% casualties, you then repeat all day long, for weeks on end, until you realize: you took a wrong turn, and have now been cornered by Leman Russes that had a map. While trying to delay your doom, more snipers are on top of the castle tower like roofs shooting down at you, until finally you turn around the corner, and are cut down by a group of kids who decided to kill you as a recreational activity for the Imperial Guard scouts.
Did we mention that all of this just describes the slum district of a minor city? Chaos gods help you if you are attacking a large city, which will likely have all of the above, but multiplied by 12.
Cadia and you
First, let me start with saying that it sucked to live on Cadia. Oh, you think where you live sucks? Live in a crime infested ghetto or something similar? A couple drive by shootings and a stolen TV are nothing compared to how much it sucked to live on Cadia. Why does it suck you ask? Oh, not much of a reason at all. Just the fact that it's like, six feet away from the fucking Eye of Terror (It also sucks to live there, but for many reasons other than Cadia).
It just sucks to live on Cadia, period. Yes, there are several manly, redeeming qualities (see below) about the planet, but if you live on Cadia you're too busy replacing the power pack in your flashlight after throwing back Monday's Chaos invasion to notice. A short list includes, but is not limited to:
- Being drafted before you can walk, learning to shoot before you can count, and getting thrown in the meat-grinder (mostly figuratively, sometimes literally) by the age of 16.
- Learning how to shoot so young that when you're toilet-trained you're told to aim your dick like it's a lasgun.
- Marauding bands of Chaos Space Marines and assorted heretics trying to kill you.
- Random WAAAGH!!!s of greenskins trying to kill you.
- Stealthy platoons of Space Elves trying to kill you.
- Your own superior officers trying to ki-*BLAM!*
- No privacy whatsoever for your entire life.
- Constant fear of death before you reach puberty.
- Constant fear of death during puberty.
- Constant fear of death after puberty, but chances are you'll die before this, have your soul sold to/claimed by a chaos deity and for their lolz spend your death in constant fear of puberty.
- Superior officers barking orders down your neck for all the years that you're alive.
No time to screw around,you're always on duty. Sometimes said duty is to help train new recruits for their inevitable deaths.
- The top fashions in Cadia are camo patterns and body armor.
- Heretical cults springing up by the dozen every week.
- Voices keep telling you to ditch the duty and relax, let loose, call in sick, or try something different.
- The fact that the planet's
mainonly export is Soldiers should clue you in.
- Mutants springing up everywhere wanting to try out the new pincer claw they just got on your neck.
- Even after you die, Cadia doesn't stop being shitty to you, because once the engraving on your tombstone is illegible, it means you've been dead for so long nobody alive cares about you anymore, so your corpse is dug up and thrown into an incinerator while a fresh corpse is thrown into your hole. And then they will be dug up and thrown away as well.
- Cadia is now destroyed and consumed by the Eye of Terror. If you're still living there, you're either a heretic, a warp entity, fighting a heroic last stand, or really really unlucky. Scratch that, due to Chaos forces largely moving on, the Imperial Guard forces who made it to secure fortifications rallied and retook the planet AFTER IT WAS DESTROYED. The Guard truly are the manliest men to ever manly.
Seriously, it just sucks to live there, just take my word for it. Avoid prolonged stays on Cadia at all costs.
Yes it sucked to live on Cadia, sucks beyond all Hell, but there are several reasons why it was one of the most awesome places in the Imperium.
Cadian Shock Troopers
First and foremost, the finest (and perhaps most numerous) breed of the Imperial Guard were born, trained, and lived on Cadia. You see the Cadian as the common model for your generic, garden variety guardsmen figurine, and as such they are the most easily recognized. They fight tenaciously for the Empra and die with the same degree of vigor. Manliness is never in short order here on Cadia, making it one of the most awesome planets around.
Their elite troops are the Kasrkin, basically the elite of the elite of the Guard. That are separate from the Scions as they aren't trained in cozy little Scholas watched over by Commissars, but are trained right there on Cadia, combining all the battle conditioning and tactics learned by the Cadia Shock Troopers over the course of KILLING EVERYTHING IN THE GALAXY for the last several thousand years. Only SPESS MEHREENS are better. But the Kasrkin are probably scarier than the Spess Mehreens anyway, because they do about the same on the battlefield, without wearing a concrete wall on every inch of their body and not having mini-rocket launcher guns, no, they're just humans with balls of adamantium, both of which have their own pair of balls of adamantium (and that's the women). They don't wear carapace armor, either. Full-bodied flack-armor for these motherfuckers. To be fair though, they get shit done while wearing cardboard instead of the Guardsman's t-shirts, and they still use the older but far more advanced Hellguns over the Scion's Hot-shot lasguns, they shoot a lot more light than the Guardsman's flashlight. For example, a Kasrkin Sergeant literally jumps on the back of a rampaging Daemonhost (which has already incapacitated the majority of an Inquisitorial retinue) and stabs it with a regular ol' combat knife to save the life of an Inquisitor. Balls. Of. Adamantium. Before the battle even began that Inquisitor admitted to being scared of them, and this is an Inquisitor who has fought alongside Deathwatch Marines against traitor Legionaries of The Emperor's Children in a warp corrupted landscape, 100 years ago, and has seen and battled Emperor knows what since then. Let that sink in. Now, the Kasrkin scared him, bad-fucking-ass.
In conclusion, Cadians are the best troopers, and Kasrkin are the best of the best, well at least when it comes to conventional warfare, other regiments have them beat in specialized roles (Siege and attrition warfare? Send forth the Death Korps. Guerrilla warfare and sabotage? Sneak some Catachans or Desert Raiders in depending on the environment. Rapid insertion and maneuvering? Drop the Elysians on 'em). But when you aren't sure what you'll be up against or are expecting a prolonged encounter with rapidly changing tactical situations then you can't go wrong with the Cadian Shock Troopers. When you need a certain failure to run away for awhile, catapult a Kasrkin at him.
Also confirmed to be so fucking hardcore that their planet broke before they did. In spite of their homeworld's destruction, they've managed to keep going as strong as ever and now fight even harder to avenge its loss. Even better, with the scattered regiments settling on multiple other worlds, those worlds are probably soon going to be pumping out incredibly skilled regiments of their own. Chaos fucked itself. I mean, more than usual and not in that way.
Despite what is said about how much of a hellhole Cadia was due to the constant warfare, because of that selfsame constant warfare Cadia was one of the most well-defended planets in the Imperium. In fact, it was the 2nd most heavily defended world in the Imperium of Man, only Sol System is better defended than Cadia (And maaaaaybe Fenris, with Catachan being a close third if you count batshit insane wildlife as a defensive element). So, probably more heavily defended than Mars. All cities are arranged in interlocking blocks that require roads to snake around buildings with blind corners and are defended by rockcrete and adamantium walls, all to favor the defenders in urban combat. Massive shield generators keep the cities safe from all but the heaviest bombardment, forcing enemies to pay for them meter by bloody meter. All "civilians" are technically Cadian military reservists, and have been through the same life-long military training that all Cadians are subject to. As dangerous as Cadia is, the locals have learned to handle that danger and weather it as well as possible. Given its strategic importance, the Imperium is more than willing to commit substantial other resources to the planet's defense, which means lots of ships patrolling the system and lots of depots stationed in nearby systems to quickly reinforce Cadia at a moment's notice.
CREEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEED!!!!!!!! This article has infiltrated your computer. You just got tactical geniused.
Birth rate and recruitment rate are synonymous. And if you see how many men and women die on the battlefield every day... better start doing your part for the Imperium. On Cadia, you were encouraged to fuck around wildly and have your partner push out the kid in a barracks to increase efficiency in recruiting. Interestingly, military service is not actually required on Cadia, it’s simply their cultural expectation. They also don’t use the Vitae Womb (even though they probably need it). No word on fertility supplements to maximize number of children per batch or methods to shorten pregnancies, though.
Cadia's, as you noticed, only real export was soldiers. The thing is, Cadia pumps out so many that they usually form the core cadre of amalgamated units that get clumped into entirely new Imperial Guard armies, and sent to wage campaigns against taken or occupied planets. These armies are never getting sent back home, and are intended, when they win, to form a new government and society, and settle down (as seen in Dawn of War WA and Dark Crusade). As the core is usually Cadian, a lot of the army doctrines and style end up being Cadian, at least for a millennia or so. Hell, they colonize empty planets this way even, especially if it's a dangerous sector of space. Even now, who knows how many planets that are distinct and vital started this way? Your DNA could be spread far and wide across the galaxy and you wouldn't even know.
This is of course to justify why everyone looks like Cadians, aka GW doesn't want to make a dozen different types of guards.
Ever fancied having more eye color than is standard for man? Move to Cadia and your kids will likely get glowing purple/violet eyes, may explain how purple-eyed animu characters tend to be awesome, they must be Cadians. Have fun explaining (with a bayonet...and a few thousand friends) to mobs of angry locals on other planets that you're not a mutant before they crucify you and burn you alive. Most likely the locals automatically assume their eyes are glowing with the Emperor’s divine light or something. It seems to be a result of living close to the Eye, as the original human settlers were completely culled by the Word Bearers during the crusade and the trait popped up after the planet was resettled.
The Place of Lorgar's Enlightenment
While the Imperium would consider this quality the highest order of heresy, perhaps the greatest reason for Cadia's importance is that it is, in many ways, the birthplace of the Horus Heresy. It was on Cadia the forces of the Word Bearers met with Ingethel the Chosen and were inducted into the service of the Ruinous Powers. As such, Cadia holds tremendous ideological importance and sentimental value for the Champions of Chaos.
The Fall of Cadia
|This article contains spoilers! You have been warned.|
"You are standing in the eye of the storm. Move an inch, and you'll be dead! You are standing underneath the towers of the teeth, And the eye blazes red! "
- – The Towers of the Teeth
Business As Usual
When Abaddon finally launched his 13th Black Crusade, Cadia stood ready. Millions perished in the initial attack, but there were still enough Imperial forces to first blunt, then repulse the Chaos incursion. In its wake however was a system on the edge of collapse, its surviving defenders too weary to even try to celebrate. What was worse, Cadia was effectively isolated, with most of its Astropathic choirs either dead or driven insane.
Ursarkar Creed, now Lord Castellan, was worried. Throughout the fighting on-world, there was not even a single report of Abaddon being spotted. As a result he was sure that another assault was on the way, and what was worse it was likely that the Despoiler's own fleet would pass through the system. Unfortunately there was little left of the Imperial Navy present to put up more than a token defense, barring the Space Wolves battle barge Firemane's Fang, and none of the ships there would be able to chase down Abaddon's ships once they made for deep space.
Preparing for the inevitable, Creed dug in, and set his forces to fortifying Kasr Kraf, which included Marshall Amalrich's Black Templars. Similar scenes repeated themselves throughout Cadia, with surviving Shock Troops and Astartes companies setting up defenses where they can. The Space Wolves set themselves up in Kasr Jark, while further north the Dark Angels 4th Company reinforced their own grounded Strike Cruiser Sword of Defiance. In the days that followed the defenders drilled and trained, waiting for the inevitable to come.
Eye of Terror 2: Electric Boogaloo
And come it did, because Abaddon was not done with Cadia. Not by a long shot. His Black Fleet was inbound, an angry swarm of Traitor Legion warships, Daemon vessels, and space hulks, with the Blackstone Fortress Will of Eternity at its core. The remnants of Battlefleets Corona and Scarus, bloodied by the first wave of the Black Crusade, sought to stall the Black Fleet's advance, and paid for their defiance with their lives. Still the Chaos fleet swept on.
News that a Blackstone Fortress was incoming sent Creed's forces' already fevered preparations into a frenzy. Every Tech-adept that could be spared set about restoring Cadia's damaged null-array, which was damaged at the start of the Black Crusade. Even then it would not be enough, because time had finally run out for Cadia.
The Space Wolves however, disagreed. Sven Bloodhowl volunteered to lead his Great Company in boarding the Will of Eternity, and do what they can to slow its advance. Along with them came two hundred other battle-brothers from the various Chapter forces devastated at the start of the Black Crusade, survivors of the 13th Cadian, and a full maniple of Skitarii. It was the last throw of the dice, but Creed had very few options left.
They failed. Abaddon's vanguard arrived on schedule a day later, soon followed by the Blackstone Fortress. Cheers erupted among the defenders however when its devastation beam dispersed harmlessly across the upper atmosphere. The null array worked! Eeeeeeeexcept it seems that the projection grid now featured xenos tech that wasn't there a day ago...
The cheers were a little short-lived however, as the skies of Cadia Secundus blacked with Traitor drop-ships. Round two had begun, and Abaddon had all the advantages.
The defenders put up a withering amount of fire, but it was not enough. Traitor Legionnaires made landfall, and daemonic reinforcements were summoned. Defense positions were soon overrun, and Creed made the decision to recall defenders back to the curtain walls of Kasr Kraf. The defenders made their fighting retreats, barring Marshall Amalrich's Black Templars, who stubbornly decided to stand their ground, and the Sisters of Battle that had made their defense at the Shrine of Saint Morrican.
Hours passed, then days. Orven Highfell's Ironwolves had counter-attacked the Iron Warriors force threatening Kasr Jark, while the Dark Angels defending the Sword of Defiance threw off three separate World Eater attacks. Slowly though the defenders were losing ground, and Creed once again ordered a withdrawal to the second curtain wall. The Novamarines 2nd Company sold their lives to stop Possessed from breaching one gate, but the West gate was lost, and with it so too was the 2nd curtain wall lost. Redoubt after redoubt fell, overwhelmed, with even the Dark Angels forced to abandon their grounded strike cruiser and join up with the surviving Space Wolves in their own withdrawal.
Kasr Kraf could not hold forever. An assault by the traitor Legio Vulcanum nearly made its defenses buckle, but the final straw was the assault of the Hounds of Abaddon. Led by newly-ascended Daemon Prince Urkanthos, the Hounds broke through the Kriegan Gates, slaughtering the Kasrkin regiments Creed had sent there to stem the tide. It took Creed himself, leading the 8th Cadian, that finally became the wall that the tide of traitors broke against. The remaining Astartes did what they could, but it was the intervention of the remnants of Marshall Amalrich's Cruxis Crusade (who had finally admitted that he was an idiot in trying to defend AWAY from Kasr Kraf) that seemed to give the remaining defenders a chance at more than a final show of defiance.
Urkanthos would not be denied however. His mission from Abaddon was clear: destroy the null array, and Cadia would fall. This was done with contemptuous ease. With its defenders dead and its ancient machinery reduced to cinders, nothing would stop the Blackstone Fortress from scouring the world clean.
The Living Saint Cometh
It was then Saint Celestine arrived, wreathed in the Emperor's own holy fire. Flagging faith was renewed, and strength was once brought to wearied limbs. Aside from this she brought with her reinforcements: five companies of the Order of Our Martyred Lady, long lost in the Warp, and the Imperial Fists that had been on-board the Phalanx during its emergency warp transition.
While Celestine lent aid to those on the ground, the Phalanx thundered into the heart of the Black Fleet, straight at the Blackstone Fortress. Dorn's fist was to be its executioner. With a little help from what remained of Bloodhowl's force (who had somehow survived to board the fortress, and had been fighting a running battle within for days), the Phalanx's planet-busting forward guns fired into a suddenly un-shielded flank (unprotected thanks to Bloodhowl's force sacrificing itself to take out the generators there). The Will of Eternity broke apart from the bombardment, its death throes throwing a third of gathered Traitor fleet there back into the Immaterium, and scattered the rest, while its broken husk hung in orbit.
The ground war fared better as the defenders threw off Urkanthos' Hounds from the walls, with the Daemon Prince's own corpse being added to the pile. Despite this, the Despoiler's forces still held air superiority, and scattered warbands gathered for yet another assault. This was no victory, but Cadia held off its doom for another day.
Even more surprises, as some last-minute reinforcements were still streaming in: the 5th Company of the Crimson Fists led by Ruis Tracinto, elements of the 14th Cadian, tanks of the Armoured 51st, Knights of House Taranis. The last but most significant of these latecomers was a Mechanicus Explorator fleet led by one Belisarius Cawl. It is Cawl that revealed to the gathered defenders the importance of not abandoning Cadia, and just how deep the Destroyer's plans were.
The last defenders withdrew to the Elysion Pylon fields, where the Legion of the Damned had manifested to keep watch over, to make their stand. Beyond the atmosphere the Phalanx moved to cover the field with its bombardment cannons, while far below the fields, Cawl and his adepts worked tirelessly to try and get the pylons to work, but nothing he tried made the pylons react even a little. Close to throwing the towel in frustration, it was then that Trazyn the Infinite decide to make his presence known. The Necron proposed a truce, and promised to aid Cawl for its own inscrutable reasons.
The Battle of Elysion Fields
By this time the Battle of the Elysion Fields began to heat up, as Abaddon's forces slowly strangled the Imperial defenders. Days passed in desperate combat, with the Imperials hanging on just by the slimmest of margins, but that all changed once Abaddon himself teleported in to crush Cadia's last resistance himself. Accompanied by the Bringers of Despair, they assaulted Creed's command directly, and it was only due to the sacrifice of Creed's friend Kell that the Lord Castellan was able to live and fight another day. He, alongside the remnants of the Cadian 8th, made a fighting retreat into the catacombs beneath the Elysion pylons, before being finally pushed back into the deeper chambers that Cawl was still doing his work.
Curious at seeing the end result of Cawl's labors, Trazyn deigned to release some of his "collection" to delay the Despoiler: Heresy-era Ultramarines, Vostroyans, Tanith, Salamanders, an odd Custodian... All joined the battle against Abaddon's forces. All except Ordo Hereticus Inquisitor Katarinya Greyfax and her bodyguard, that is. Wulfren bearing the sigil of the Ironwolves soon joined the fray, followed by Highfell himself fighting with a near-feral wildness.
It was then that Cawl coaxed the pylons to life. For those battling in the catacombs the effects were immediate, as Daemons were banished back to the Warp, and Possessed roared as their warp-spawned halves returned to the Immaterium. UNFORTUNATELY this also affected the Legion of the Damned, and reduced Celestine's power to a mere Battle-Sister with a power weapon. Whoops.
This proved to be a BIG problem for Celestine, as she had been dueling Abaddon at that point. Creed had to personally intervene, as he saw immediately that if the Living Saint fell, so would the remaining morale of the defenders there. Even Greyfax, for all her distate for the "false idol", acted, and turned her psychic might at keeping the Despoiler at bay. In a moment of arrogance, Abaddon held off the deathblow to Celestine long enough to gloat over his impending success only to take a hit himself. Even depowered, Celestine had inflicted a wound upon the Despoiler which he had not felt the likes of since the Horus Heresy.
High above the effects of the pylons intensified. Against all expectation whatever was being transmitted from Cadia was actually causing the Eye of Terror to shrink, and soon anything remotely warp-based began to waver or outright fail, including the void shields of the warships still glaring at each other beyond the atmosphere. Even teleporting out would eventually be impossible. It was at this point the Despoiler ordered his forces to withdraw, much to the shock and confusion of his ravaged foes. Even the forces on the surface were withdrawing en-masse, falling back to their Thunderhawks and drop-ships, and speeding back to the safety of the Black Fleet.
Something was up, and there was only one thing for sure: the compost was about to hit the rotary impeller, and SOON.
Once safely back upon the bridge of the Vengeful Spirit, Abaddon set his "Plan B" in motion: if he couldn't have Cadia, nobody would. As soon as the last of the Traitor forces were retrieved, the Black Fleet pulled away from the planet, post-haste. At that point hidden plasma drives flared into life on the ruins of the Will of Eternity, and slowly the moon-sized mass started to fall in the direction of Cadia. The batteries of the wounded Phalanx opened up in desperation, but nothing could stop its fall once the Blackstone Fortress was captured by Cadia's gravity well. Like the fist of an angry god, the fortress struck the planet hard, and the world burned.
From his command throne, Abaddon opened up a bottle of vintage wine, raised a cup (made from the skull of the Horus clone he had killed in the Battle of Harmony) in toast of an old foe, and laughed. Guffawhaw! Kekeke! Huehuehue! Teeheehee!
Death of a World
Millions died in the aftermath of the impact, but the worst was yet to come. As mountains crumbled and seas vanished into steam, the ancient Pylons scattered on the planet toppled as well. The ancient network sputtered and died, at which the Eye of Terror roared back into being, stronger and MUCH larger now that its ancient prison was sundered. With the echoing laughter of gods long-denied their prize, the maelstrom finally engulfed Cadia.
Daemons previously banished by the awakening of the pylons once more fell upon the ravaged world. Those who survived the initial inferno now found themselves fighting for their lives. But in that darkest hour, hope also returned. With the destruction of the pylons, Saint Celestine's strength returned, and burning bright with the light of the Emperor, the Living Saint led the survivors out of the catacombs, to witness a world much changed.
The Exodus of Cadia
At the sight of all the ruin and destruction, Creed finally despaired. Before his despondence could spread to his men, Greyfax took the initiative, and ordered the planetary evacuation of all surviving Imperial forces. Countless troop transports and landing craft roared upwards to the relative safety of the Phalanx, though many more were lost amidst the burning atmosphere and the winged daemonspawn now infesting the skies.
Back at the Elysion Fields, the evacuation was turning desperate, as the waves of daemons pushed back the defensive lines. Soon there wouldn't be anywhere safe to land, and the evacuation zone would become a death trap.
Something had to be done. The Lord Castellan roused himself from his grief, and announced that the 8th Cadian would buy everyone the time they needed to escape. To their credit, none of the Castellan's Own blanched at the order, despite knowing full well what it meant. They owed Creed their lives anyway, and now was as good a time as any to pay the Castellan back the debt.
The last transports boosted away to safety, with the final one taking within the Knights of House Taranis, Marshall Amalrich's Black Templars, Saint Celestine's Sisters, and Grayfax. As they left that blighted battlefield behind, a clear and proud cry could be heard, over the howling winds and the cannon roar. It was a shout of defiance, bowed but unbroken: "CADIA STANDS!"
The Fate of Creed
Creed, wounded, weary, and about to bleed out, is confronted not by a Daemon, but by a metal giant wearing a scaled cloak. After that, a promise of eternity before darkness engulfs him, the giant's laughter ringing in his ears.
We're Not Through Yet, Motherfuckers!
According to the 7e Astra Militarum codex, every single Cadian regiment was recalled back to Cadia by Creed to defend it. Given that there were only 4 million Imperial survivors out of the original 850 million Imperials initially present, the vast majority of Cadian regiments were likely annihilated. Of course, it's unknown just how many Cadian regiments actually managed to get to Cadia in time before the shit hit the fan, but it's safe to say that certain Imperium reports that 90% of Cadia's Guard forces were off-world at the time and thus have survived the Fall of Cadia are either complete grox manure, or there were just THAT many Cadia guard regiments exported over the centuries. Given how long the Imperium has been around and the staggering size of the Guard, the latter may actually be more likely.
You thought the Fall of Cadia was the end? Well guess what, 8th Edition says otherwise! Curiously the closure of the Cadian Gate hadn't affected Chaos fleets in the slightest, as they've poured out the Eye everywhere across its borders with seemingly no effort while it expanded, no longer contained by the pylon network. This has actually worked out sort of okayish for the Imperium as well. With Cadia dealt with, a lot of warbands have decided to stop listening to the armless failure and go do their own thing to find things that are easier to kill than Cadia. This presents a bit of a problem for Chaos as Geedubs themselves have said there's still a fucking ton of defenders in the Cadian system and that the Chaos forces are starting to wear thin on the now-worthless planet.
On top of that, Cadia took so fucking long to go down that the Imperium is entrenched deep into neighboring planets waiting for a second coordinated wave of Chaos attackers that is increasingly unlikely to show up. Needless to say, there are more than a few commanders that think having all these forces sitting around essentially doing nothing was a massive waste, when they could instead be bringing the fight to the Great Enemy...
More worryingly, a detachment of the Adeptus Custodes has been sent there by order of the Captain-General. Specifically, the Custodes in charge of ensuring the Age of Strife-era horrors contained in the Imperial Palace's prisons (the mere knowledge of which could wreck the Imperium should they ever be known about) stay there. Seeing that several of said horrors were scattered across the galaxy by Chaos after the Great Rift opened, odds are that whatever the golden bananas were sent there for is very bad news.
Moral of the Story: Humans are incredibly good at creating superweapons.
In the wake of the Exodus from Cadia, several surviving regiments found themselves in the Agripinaa System. Those lucky enough not to be "volunteered" into servitor-dom by the neighboring forge-world of Agripinaa (which was unlikely to mess with a ton of the best army around and one so famous and beloved by the Imperium and important that screwing with them could get Agripinaa blown up) still had to fight off pursuing Chaos forces, which included renegade Astartes warbands from the Sons of Malice and the Crimson Slaughter. One of these forces, led by General Gruber, made its last stand on ice moon of Faith's Anchorage. Although they were eventually overwhelmed, the Cadians went down fighting, with General Gruber himself -- an old man noted in-universe to neither be particularly brave or inspirational -- spitting defiance at his slayers, and doing one final banzai charge with his power sword.
So focused were the Chaos forces on annihilating Gruber's forces that they didn't notice the other parts of the Cadian Exodus that had translated into the outer system -- which included elements of the battered but unbowed Battlefleet Cadia. Eager for vengeance, the Cadians fell upon the Chaos Fleet, but even with their numbers it was a close thing, due to the damage the Imperial Fleet had already received prior. Then out of nowhere, the Space Wolf Strike Cruiser Stiklestad entered the fray, and soon the odds were tipped in the Imperials' favor.
Very quickly, the forces that had destroyed General Gruber's forces found themselves stranded on Faith's Anchorage as the Stiklestad's crew demonstrated what happens when you face Astartes boarders to their ships. With nowhere to go, the Heretics soon found themselves facing regiment upon regiment of very VERY angry Cadian Shock Troopers. It took two weeks to comprehensively clear Hope's Anchorage of Heretic filth.
The Cadians were very thorough.
In the wake of this, the highest commanding officer of the Cadian military, General Benedikt of the 101st, consolidated his weary and battered forces on Chaeros, the 7th world of the Agripinaa system. It was soon renamed New Cadia, a place to lick wounds and mourn lost comrades, a new place to call home, and a place to strike back from when the time finally came.
As for the other Cadian regiments, it says something that even after the destruction of their homeworld, Cadian regiments are still making up the bulk of the Guard forces in the Vigilus campaign. Even the Cadian 8th is active in the campaign, though they've renamed themselves Creed's Legacy. New troopers are made up of descendants of original regiment men and survivor colonists.
|The Planets, Systems, Regions and Sectors of the Galaxy|
|Imperial Homeworlds:||Holy Terra - Sacred Mars|
|Primarch Homeworlds:||Baal - Barbarus - Caliban - Chemos - Chogoris - Colchis |
Cthonia - Deliverance - Fenris - Inwit - Medusa - Nostramo
Nocturne - Nuceria - Olympia - Prospero - Macragge
|Planets:||Armageddon - Bakka - Cadia - Catachan - Ganymede |
Hydraphur - Krieg - Kronus - Sacris - Sanctuary 101
Scelus - Tanith - Tartarus - Vigilus - Vraks - Zayth
|Daemon Worlds:||Plague Planet - Sortiarius - Sicarus - Medrengard - Glass Moon |
Fleshworld - Bathamor - Black Marble
|Systems and Regions:||Ghoul Stars - Halo Zone - Jericho Reach - Kaurava System |
Solar System - Stygius Sector - T'au Septs - Taelus System - Ultramar
|Types of Worlds:||Agri-World - Craftworld - Daemon World - Death World - Eldar World |
Forge World - Fortress World - Hive World - Civilised World - Tomb World