|The Crimson Warhawks Legion|
"Battles are won through manoeuvre and slaughter - the more you commit to the first, the less you need to commit the second."
|Graha'nak||Void Lords||Friendly rivalry in regards to Void Combat, not particularly close as Primarchs. Disagreed with his fondness of Orbital bombardment, finding it wasteful and crude.|
|Xun Tohilcoatl||Sky Serpents||both vocal proponents of the Librium Project. were becoming friends towards the beginning of the heresy, and while Raydons favoured brother post-heresy he still resented Xuns "passive" approach.|
|Alexios the White||Angels of Light||Envious of his ability to build empires, but knows that his is the soul of a wanderer, and would hate being 'trapped' in a single place for too long. Didn't spend time with him during the crusade as they werent deployed together. After the Heresy, Raydon suggested that Alexios be made Lord-High Marshal of the Loyalist Forces, his ability to rebuild being vital. However he grew to resent Alexios over the years, as he instead built his Imperium Minoris.|
|Marcus Sinistrum||Fists of Mars||Did not spend time with during the Great Crusade, however afterwards the two grew close, the Fists being instrumental in supporting Raydon's Eternal Crusade. Raydon considered Marcus "one of three" who would be a fitting candidate to lead the loyalists.|
|Sarco Funerus||Undying Scions||The legion sees being trapped in dreadnoughts as a fate far worse than death, having a strong ancestor honouring culture. They would pity them, but also most likely hold them in high regard for the sacrifice they would have made to be incarcerated within the dreadnoughts armour. Raydon thought Sarco was abit wild prior to his internment, but had very little to do with him both during the Crusade and after the Heresy.|
|Engerand||Storm Hammers||Respected, but only worked with on a few occasions. Mostly after the Heresy, Raydon enjoyed duelling with Engerand, attempting to find a sparring partner to replace Klaus.|
|Klaus Staffel||Knights Exemplar||Close bonds, Raydon's closest ally during the Crusade, it was said that his death changed Raydon everafter, he became dark and hate filled, a curse that has since passed onto his sons.|
|REDACTED||Eyes of the Warmaster||Most hated enemy, having fallen prey to the traitorus tournament. To this day hunting these traitors is always considered a top priority. A step or two below the devotion that DA hunt the fallen, the Warhawks definately hold the a grudge.|
|Enoch the Relentless||Judgement Bringers||Worked with extensively, never got along with.|
|Rubinek||Iron Hearts||Up until the Heresy they worked closely together, and shared many battle honours. Was devastated by their betrayal.|
|Balthasar the Bloody||Bloodhounds||Disapprove of methodology, and think they are shameful "hunters". A Barbarian. Probably the Primarch Raydon disliked the most.|
|Kashaln||Silver Spears||Disapproved of utilisation of mass infantry assaults, thinking them a waste of resources - and callous, but mostly a waste.|
|Saul Sheridan||Second Sons||Another close friend before the Heresy, shared many musings with, and the two legions worked extensively together during the great crusade.|
|Gengrat Vannevar||Behemoth Guard||Avoided whenever possible, disagreed with tactics, mentality, and personality.|
|Oramar||Warp Raiders||Avoided due to an eeries feeling Raydon was plagued with when in Oramars presence.|
|Anders Kor||Paladins of Kor||Respected his humanitarian outlook but thought him naive. Lost his respect when he turned Renegade, seeing no divide between the traitors actions and his. Hates him for preaching 'neutrality' a pointless and empty gesture in a galaxy at war.|
|Traitors||++EXCOMMUNICATE TRAITORIS++||The prey for the Great Hunt. No Mercy, No Remorse.|
|"Independents"||++EXCOMMUNICATE TRAITORIS++||During the Heresy there were those who fought for the Emperor, and those who didn't. These Independents may claim neutrality but there absence was noted from the final battle, their inaction causing the deaths of many loyal brothers.|
|Crusader States||Desperate Allies||While still loyalists, tensions are vary from Legion to Legion, the Hawks having closer ties with some Legions than others. Ultimately though, they resent those with the power to retake the Imperium and continue the Emperors vision.|
|The "True Blades"||Battle Brothers||A covenant of those that have remained committed to the Eternal War and defending teh Emperors vision.|
Cast into the Warp by the nefarious Chaos Gods, Raydon’s pod landed on the frozen world somewhere in the Lamyphrid cluster. The planet, whose name has been lost to time, was frozen desert, a world of ice and wind. For untold years Raydon survived in isolation, until one day.
On that fortuitous day Raydon awoke early, and saw a ball of fire descend into his world. He followed the streaks in the sky for a day and a night, until finally coming across the mysterious visitors. He identified them for their familiarity, quite unlike the beasts that hunted on the ice plains. He saw their warmth, their camaraderie, and their vessel – something he had not the words to explain. He knew then, with an intensity of a burning sun that he needed to find his way on-board the fantastical creation.
His years of surviving on the frozen plains had taught him well the advantages of stealth, and his experience with the strong loud winds only made his task easier. Within moments he was into a new world. A world of metal and wires, corridors and hatches. He took well to his new environment, faster in fact than he had adapted to his old home – already becoming a distant memory – before he knew it, he had found a roaring room of warm metal. The sounds of the engine lulling him into his first safe night of sleep.
When he awoke, he did so to the sounds of foot scuffs and idle chatter. He hid immediately, his survival instincts honed to a fine peak, he twisted the shadows around him, disappearing from sight and mind. And so it was, for many a years that he hid amongst the rafters and crewmen. He had migrated from the shuttle to the ship proper, he had even realized he was among the stars, he had begun to learn the language of his hosts, some of the crew customs, and had through observation even been learning how their jobs.
He began to imitate the crew, working for a time worked among them, until he grew so large that even the most uneducated rating at a glance identified him as different. It was then that he was enlisted as one of the ships enforcers, and quickly his proficiency for violence brought him to the attention of the ships senior security officer, and its captain – Captain Malcolm Haarlock.
Within weeks of joining the captain’s personal guard, Haarlock had taken the boy under his wing, having identified a keen if uneducated intellect, and an unbridled passion for piloting. Raydon became the captain’s protégé and adopted son, taught by the helmsmen in how to pilot the vessel, the marine commander in boarding tactics, the security officer in the principles of marksmenship, its seneschal in management and negotiation. Raydon’s teachers became his family, and his family his teachers. It was only a scant handful of years, less than a decade before Malcolm Haarlock lost his life, the very illness that had led an otherwise decent man into a life of piracy.
Raydon was the obvious heir, the crew thought him a legend, one who rose from nothing to become everything, the command staff knew his mind far exceeded anything a mere human could match, the marines had fought beside him, at first as peers and later as followers.
He was elected by unanimous consent of command. And his captaincy was one of dread infamy. His methodology and approach to piracy was radical, he did not abide by the standard convention of naval engagement, he favoured maximising the advantage of surprise, focussed on a single goal, overwhelming it, and withdrawing immediately. He would often find his way aboard enemy vessels, or send kill teams to do so, sabotage enemy sensor arrays and engines. Sending them a warning from the Dread Pirate Neratos, the warning was always simple and would bombard every comm channel available.
– Surrender half of your goods, and your lives will be spared. Resist and burn with all of them. –
In time his infamy became a living creature of its own. Taking on new and more outlandish traits as deeds of his exploits carried far and wide. In time those that heard the warning would immediately surrender their goods, knowing that it was the only way to stave off certain doom. Other pirates began to operate in his name, latching onto his impossible successes. In time his imitators and legend became too inconvenient and the newly expanding Unification forces were unable to allow such a conglomerate to persist.
The Emperor himself tasking a naval captain, one Caprica De La Veta to bring back the head of the Dread Pirate Neratos at any cost, tasking one of his personal guardians, one of the Custodes to accompany him and ensure the deed was done. De La Veta, proved himself a wily and ultimately worthy enemy to the Dread Pirate, tracking him seamlessly through the void. Hounding his steps, and never falling into the traps laid for him.
It was around this time that Raydon began to have dreams, quite unlike anything he had experienced before. He dreamt of a golden giant, backed by wreaths of black flame. A giant whose presence who seemed to banish the shadows at his feet, yet what replaced the shadows was burnt and scarred beyond recognition. Night after night, he would dream of this giant, sometimes the dreams would change but always there was the golden giant. And so, he followed his dreams, time and time again he would evade traps set for him by the Unified Forces, though for all his brilliance and foresight, he couldn’t trap or ambush his pursuer either. And so a great game of cat and mouse began – each taking their turn playing the cat and the mouse.
It was on the anniversary of De La Veta’s appointment that he finally deciphered the pattern in Neratos’ seemingly erratic behaviours. He correctly identified that Nerato’s own manoeuvres mirrors those of the Emperor’s own. Neratos, he deduced had somehow tracked the Emperors movements and was closing in.
His solution was simple and brilliant, he reported to the Emperor his findings and established a cordon, Neratos had displayed in the past an indomitable drive to achieve his goals, and a recklessness that De La Veta believed wouldn’t allow him to turn away from the obvious blockade so close to achieving whatever nefarious task he had set himself too. Indeed he was once again correct. Raydon using a recent “acquisition” flew straight through the blockade in Navy Frigate, posing as a returning patrol commander. Once within the outer cordon he made his way to the Emperors flag ship, and found the passage eerily easy. Mirroring his actions a decade or more ago, he cloaked himself in shadow, and made his way undetected and alone onto the Emperors flagship.
Once their however he immediately saw the error in his ways, He had thought himself the Golden Giant. Dread and Glorious. Powerful and Beloved. He thought his dreams were leading him to ultimate self, his destiny. But once he locked eyes with the Emperor, who could not be deceived by the shadows Raydon wrapped himself in. Once he locked eyes with his Father, he knew the truth. He had been lead to his destiny true enough, but the Giant was not him but his Father – the Lord and Emperor of All Mankind.
It has been lost to the ages what occurred in the Emperors throne room, only a handful of Custodes were present and they spoke not a word of it. In later years Raydon would say he bent his knee and pledged his undying support to his father, and to mankind.
Shortly after Caprica De La Veta would be recruited by Malcador the Sigilite, his genius, drive, and devotion repurposed in Malcadors own Ordo. Accounts of his deeds are sealed, though it is said that Raydon and De La Veta met on occasion, neither displeased with the outcome. Both believing that they played their parts as they were meant to, harbouring fond memories of the great chase.
Named Raydon for it's meaning of “quick giant” in the Security Officers native tongue, and Neratos, after the Haarlocks first mate, Arsline Neratos, much to the dismay of Captain Haarlock.
Neratos holds himself to an incredibly high standard, a standard extremely few could meet – even among his Brother Primarchs, to the point that he found his existence lonely, having few he could truly relate with. He had a distinct tendency to brood, rarely sharing his thoughts with anyone without encouragement. He preferred to keep to himself unless called upon, finding peace in isolation – his mind constantly abuzz when in the presence of others.
He found himself constantly embattled with his dark and sometimes savage thoughts, in order to temper this, he sought out isolation, and when that was not possible, the thrill of the hunt and the Emperors Vision.
One of his most defining traits is his loyalty, despite being questioned by both sides during the Heresy and even the Great Crusade before that. Indeed it has been postulated by many scholars in the ages since that should the loyalty to the Emperor be known prior to the Heresy, the Warmaster would have committed more to disrupting their consolidation rather than attempting to sway them.
It was in fact his inner savagery that ensured his loyalty, for in order to control it fully - he needed to anchor himself to a single, solid ideal. The ideal he chose was that the Emperor was the only power truly worthy of sitting on the Throne of Terra, stating clearly he would bend the knee to no other.
It was said that the Hawk had never been anything other than his own master. And despite his ego, he never attempted to be anything other than what he was. He understood his role in the crusade – and knew he would never be a central figure of it, unlike his Brothers [[TBC]]. Instead he embraced his role, and that of his Legion.
Among the Legions he had few friends, his role putting him far forward of the main action and so he rarely interacted with many of them, and those he did often disturbed him – the callousness and brutality with which they waged war. Notable allies during the Great Crusade being Aodhán Kael, Rubinek, Klaus, and Saul. He had few friends among his brothers due to the rarity of shared deployments, and of those he trusted 3 turned traitor and the other died. In more modern times this meant he rarely sought out companionship after the Heresy, though he did grow close to Xun and Marcus.
Always the pragmatist the Hawk would never throw away an advantage when it came his way, a lesson he tried to pass onto his sons.
The Hawk was also a superlative swordsman, he fought with clinical motion, his movements precise. His every muscle and motion the pinnacle of economy, each thrust and parry executed to perfection, no strength wasted in striking, no stamina wasted in the defence. At times on-lookers would think he was in far greater danger than he was, for his dodges and parries were often only JUST in time, only JUST wide enough to avoid a lethal blow. What they didn’t understand was this was the pinnacle of his control and skill. His superior reflexes combined with his innate precognition allowed him to fight for a time against superior combatants. He was noted among his Brother Primarchs by Klaus himself, as "a dangerous foe whose eyes were as sharp as his blade".
The Hawk was also rumoured to be a low-level psyker, having several remarkable abilities according to remembrancers, among which were his ability to shield his thoughts from psykers, and even conceal his physical presence for periods of time. Likewise he had an uncanny knack for sensing his surroundings, both being able to identify the location of otherwise concealed enemies and being able to instinctively react to threats that even his Demi-God Brothers could not perceive. All of which is in addition to his prophetic dreams which led him to the Emperor, and implored him to dispatch his Vigilator Primus to the Tournament of Blades in secret – a defining moment for the Legion in determining the truth of the event.
"Whilst even one of my sons still draws breath, this war isn't over, the Imperium still stands, for now and forever."
- Last words of Raydon Neratos, Primarch of the Crimson Warhawks, the Emperors Shadow.
++ TRANSMISSION BEGINS ++
Enoch: Join us Brother, we can give you the freedom you seek. Freedom from Father’s foolishness, freedom to roam wherever you want, freedom! True freedom! Or would you rather be His slave forever?
Raydon: Freedom granted can be taken away, the only true freedom is choice. And I have chosen brother, as have you.
Enoch: You cannot hope to be victorious against us, don’t be foolish – to stand against the Warmaster is to die, you must know this – The Warmaster makes for Terra as we speak. Victory is imminent, mere months away.
Raydon: My Brother, there are two principles that must be adhered to in order to achieve victory; the first is never tell others everything you know.
>> Explosions wrack the Judgement Bringer vessel <<
++ TRANSMISSION ENDS ++
Bloodhound Captain: "Camouflage is the colour of fear... I have no need to hide from my foes... I have no fear of death. My colours I wear openly, they proclaim louder than any words, "I am proud to live - I am proud to die"."
Warhawk Strike Commander: "Die then, and do so proudly."
Judgement Bringer Commander "Raise the flag high. Let those degenerates know who comes to claim their lives this day!"
War Hawk Vigilator "I've got him in my sights now, firing in 3... 2... 1..."
>somewhere, deep beneath the catacombs of Ryza, there lies an ancient Fire Eagle, its every surface heaped with dust >few would ever wake such a relic, let alone step inside, or swipe the dust aside to note the 01 emblazoned upon its side - the first of its kind >fewer still would know to look under the left wing, to find the line of text scratched into the ceramite in Low Gothic >"Three brave men, friends forever, were once here." >"If you wish to know their names, they are Marcus, Aodhán, and Raydon."
Xun eyed Raydon carefully. This was always an interesting match Xun thought to himself as he gribbed his staff tighter.
Raydon took a short sharp breath dashing forward, blade extended in a lunge.
Xun spun on his heels, taking a step back as the blade passed harmlessly through the air infront of his face.
Xun looked for an exploitable opening but Raydon composed himself immediately, adopting a defensive stance. "Such precision" Xun thought to himself telepathically probing his adversary being met again and again with a cold grey stone wall. Raydon's mental blocks intregued Xun, he often thought to ask his brother managed to effortlessly shield his mind from psychic probing but knew that Raydon was a secretive kind and would not take kindly to anyone attempting to read his thoughts even if it was a comrade just sparring.
It was a delicate topic at the best of times his brothers psychic ability, Xun had tried to broach the topic of his brother possibly being a psyker but each time Raydon had dismissed it as nonsense. He would say "his instincts were strong aye, but not special." "he got lucky, thats all" "they were just dreams". His excuses were endless.
Xun dodged again, forever spinning, his hands circular in motion deflecting Raydons strikes with ease, letting the natural force of the blows carry them on after he applied only a tiny portion of force to intercept it.
The technique was famously useful when applied to his brother Primarchs, there immense strength becoming a glaring weakness, Xun smiled as he swung out with a blow of his own. Raydon leaning back slightly letting the staff pass below his chin.
Xun again became lost in his thoughts, he did enjoy sparring with his brother, even though Raydons duelling style was perhaps the best counter to Xuns own, or maybe because of it.
Xun pushed out, not with his body but with his mind as he parried yet another blow. Raydon was swept off his feet, send hurtling through the air. Spinning with inhumane agility he landed in a defensive stance.
"Thats cheating brother" Raydon said with a smirk.
"No more than you using your 'battle instincts'" Xun retorted.
"Every warrior has them brother, release your mind and hear the song too" Raydon dashed forward, a series of thrusts, fients, and slashes. Xun spun and spun, evading the blows until Raydons penultimate attack was launched.
A high strike coming down at Xun's head, the Primarch raised his staff to block twisting slightly back and to one side as he did so, the blade connected with the staff and began to slide harmlessly down the shaft. It was then that Raydon released his grip.
With a speed Xun found hard to track the Hawk dove forward, the tackle connecting and the two rolling across the floor. Xun was an apt grappler the Hawk knew, and in a real fight that might have mattered. As the two continued to roll across the floor Raydon drew his knife and tapped the tip lightly on Xuns chest plate.
"Its over Brother" Raydon joked, attempting to seem menacing.
"to first strike was perhaps a bad idea" Xun retorted.
"Our matches last too long in other formats, Brother. You know that." Raydon said as he walked across the room to reclaim his sword.
The Clash of Blades, the Smell of Steel
The blades clashed, again, and again.
Aodhans attacks came on, fast and bold - reckless even, but the assault was enough to force Raydon onto the defence. The two moved about the arena a blur, many of the spectators unable to truly perceive the duel as it unfolded.
Klaus stood to the side, a grin on his face. Critiquing the two, Aodhans form was far from perfect but his speed and aggression left little opportunity for his opponent to capitalise. Raydon a near polar opposite, his movements short and sharp, where Aodhan was passion, Raydon was precision. Aodhan attacked in large sweeping motions, he jumped and spun, and thrusted without end. Raydon's parries and dodges came late - or seemingly so, specatators would remark that he dodged each blow by barely an inch - Klaus knew differently though, his eyes able to perceive what others could not, his knowledge of battle far beyond those of regular astartes.
It was not barely an inch, it was an inch. Every strike evaded by precisely an inch. It was if he could read the Aodhans movements, impossible ofcourse, as Aodhans erratic movements confused even Klaus' exceptional skills. But the results spoke for themselves. Aodhand detected it to, more from instinct than conscious perception. It did not anger him, no, it inspired him. A foe forever just out of reach. His speed and strength increased, spurred on by his excitement.
Klaus loved to watch these Brothers duel, his favourite match-up infact. His knuckles grew pale as he gribbed his seat ever more tightly. He had duelled them both himself, any he knew from experience that Aodhan would most likely win, Raydon won only one in three times, and they drew just as often. His victories though were always upsets, times when Aodhan left an opening just too big, or left it open just too long. Raydons eyes were keen and he never missed the chance if it occured.
Suddenly a siren sounded, the round was over, inconclusive again. The two halted mid-strike. Aodhan laughed loudly.
"Next time, my Brother, I will have victory."
Raydon sheathed his blade.
"Im not so sure Brother, Im starting to see through you. Next time we fight I may just land a blow or two of my own."
The two walked from the arena together, as the crowd cheered. Klaus stood, applauding his brothers for another elegant match.
"Fabulous, you two are marvellous as always. I can hardly wait to see your next bout"
Little did Klaus know that their next bout would not be a duel in an arena, surrounded by friends and adoring sons. No, it would be atop burning ships, fought not for pleasure but because Aodhan knew what was to become of his Brother, and sought to give him a death he deserved. The last gift he could give his old-friend, if only fate was kind enough to allow it.
>default method of planetary assault
infiltration, point target destruction, centre of gravity destabilisation.
>what's plan b
mark for follow-on forces and bypass
exterminatus/orbital bombardment. prolonged engagements are costly for such a small legion. Enemy military, economic, and political bastions are engaged from orbit, and then followed up by overwhelming close fire support from gunships. Dismounts clear the complexes afterwards.
>Does the primarch have a wide circle of comrades/advisors. A small one? None at all?
He maintains a small council of advisors. likewise he keeps a small circle of friends among his Astartes brothers.
>what does his personal domain look like
Spartan. Save for trophies taken from his most thrilling hunts, and a modest work area. His weapons and armour are on display, however not particularly elegant. His armour on a manikin and weapons on racks.
>What kind of planner is he, methodical/detailed/backup plans?
He relies largely on intuition and adaptability post-deployment. The motto "A simple plan, well rehearsed, executed aggressively" sums up his type of planning. He perceptive however and tends to identify enemy strengths and weaknesses in order to avoid the former and target the latter.
>Are they an intellectual, a philosopher, an engineer, explorer, linguist, or other?
He enjoys debate and discussion, likewise adventure and the thrill of the hunt. He isn't much of an intellectual himself so instead attempts to surround himself with them.
>What kind of leader is he?
A reluctant one, he understands his position within the scheme of the Great Crusade and is content knowing more able leaders are above him. He tends to lead from the front, and while he devotes time and effort into planning, others often see him as reckless due to his tendancy and comfort in "winging it".
>How does he spend his spare time?
Meditation, training, probably reading some of the works made by his brothers.
>How does he view Humans / Astartes?
He views Humans as the inheritors of the Galaxy, and Astartes as living weapons of war, whose sole purpose is to protect humans, conquer the galaxy in the name of the Emperor. Not to rule or even lead, but to fight, to die, to conquer, and to shield.
>How does he feel about the other Primarchs
He has had limited interactions with most of them, gets along well with a select few, and tries to keep tabs on those he doesn't know as well.
>Can you draw parallels to the OU Primarchs
Pre-Heresy he would be a combination of Khan and Corvus. Speed, Mobility, Stealth. An internal sort, happy with his place and content to be alone if thats whats required. With a little bit of the Lion thrown in. Post-Heresy he is more of a Black Templar/Dark Angel, zealous in his prosecution of the traitors, like the Unforgiven. Driven by hate, fuelled by it.
>Does his attitude get passed down by the geneseed
More or less, the geneseed passes on several genetic tendencies, including occassionally memory and the ability to shield their minds from psykers.
>Why haven't they made a crusade state
Because Astartes are not meant to settle down, they are meant to fight. More so since the traitors stole the Imperium from them.
>Why did he fight, why stay loyal?
Duty, Honour, and above all... Loyalty.
>Centralised command or decentralised?
Very much decentralised. He commanded as a first among equals. Having his own Wing he led personally (in addition to having overall command of the Legion). He designed the organisation of the Legion to be able to be broken down into autonomous sections each with galactic means of transport and organic support.
>Do they follow Alexios' Codex
God no. Theories have a place, but its not on the battlefield. More to the point, the Legions design is already broken up enough to prevent a single ruler going rogue so there is no point.
>does he socialise
Yes, he likes to duel. When his Brothers want to talk he often invites them to his arena, "Truth is singular, it is unthought action. Lies are words upon words." Of course thats not always possible. When talking, he has a dry wit which can be antagonising.
|Pages of the Imperium Asunder Project|
|Loyalist:|| Crimson Warhawks - Fists of Mars - Storm Hammers - Void Lords |
Angels of Light - Sky Serpents - Undying Scions - Knights Exemplar
|Traitor:|| Eyes of the Warmaster - Bloodhounds - Silver Spears - Judgement Bringers |
Second Sons - Iron Hearts - Behemoth Guard - Arms of Asura - Negators
|Renegade:||Warp Raiders - Paladins of Kor - Oathsworn|
|Related Pages:||Imperium Asunder Campaigns - Imperium Asunder Timeline|