Erebus

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Meet the man all but directly responsible for the crap place the Imperium became.

"And what’s he then that says I play the villain? When this advice is free I give and honest?"

– Iago in Othello, William Shakespeare

What a bastard. No, seriously, this guy is the Heretic of ALL HERETICS. If you don't hate him yet, just wait, you'll be screaming curses at his face by the time we're done...seldom has there been a more reprehensible dick-biscuit.

Don't you want to punch his smug face? No, wait, you should want to Exterminatus it MULTIPLE TIMES OVER. And then let loose a Death Company or two on it.

Erebus is the most evil son of a bitch to ever (dis)grace the galaxy and was a Dark Apostle of the Word Bearers and one of Lorgar's trusted lieutenants. During a certain time, he became a devout servant of Chaos and co-conspired with Kor Phaeron in order to bring about the downfall of the Imperium. Though, to Erebus' credit, whilst Kor Phaeron was able to corrupt his Primarch, it was he who was indirectly responsible for the Horus Heresy. For it was he who manipulated events so that the Interex were slaughtered instead of warning the Imperium against the dangers of Chaos, who stole the Anathame that led to the corruption of Horus, and he, along with Horus, who masterminded the Drop Site Massacre of Isstvan V. He continued to serve Horus as his spiritual advisor until his defeat at the hands of the Emperor. And did we mention he's a total bastard? Think of a smug jackass, then make him a master manipulator, multiply that by 10, and you're STILL not close enough. How about indirectly killing millions billions trillions quadrillions uncountable numbers of people? The death toll isn't just being increased by forces of Chaos either - without the Heresy, the Noblebright Imperium would have kicked the shit out of all the xenos who were not active before 40,000, and by the way humanity is now in existential danger. Don't forget supercharging the power and influence of all the Chaos gods. We mentioned his responsibility in starting that fun time, did we not? Seriously, this guy's bastardly douchebagginess CANNOT EVER BE OVERSTATED. IT IS NOT HUMANLY POSSIBLE TO. Thankfully as the Heresy keeps on going this slimy, hateful dickblister is getting his SHIT PUSHED IN.

Background[edit]

Even if you knew nothing about the Heresy, Chaos or the 40k setting generally and just got handed a copy of the first couple of books you'd easily realize that Erebus is corrupting the living fuck out of everyone, via the venerable 'Rasputin Maneuver'. The fact that he spends all his time just chilling out with no-one else from his Legion, just hanging around where the action happens and constantly being complained about everyone loving him in the first books except the main character (poor Loken) and those two remembrancers (people should really listen to those guys more). This pretty much proves that no-one else in the setting has even the vaguest ability to connect obviously connected facts. He's a slippery, creepy motherfucker and if anyone had an ounce of sense they'd have tossed him out of a fucking airlock the second they set eyes on him.

Despite being the main instigator of it, the Horus Heresy was hardly fun times for Erebus. First of all he nearly gets sacrificed to the Dark Gods himself in order to make Horus see the "truth", which pisses him off. Then, when he gets back to Davin, the priestess who almost killed him tells him that everything was just as planned and doesn't resist when he turns on her, ruining his petty revenge. Then he gets to Calth to summon a lot of daemons... only to have to teleport (or rather use a ritual to enter the Warp and exit it at another point) away before some orbital bombardment blows his sorry ass to kingdom come.

After that he rejoins his Primarch for a time, and finishing Lorgar's merry little crusade to turn Angron into a RAGE-fulled Daemon Primach, he stabbed Argel Tal, who was the best and coolest Word Bearer to ever exist, in the back. Because he was too humane. okay... Lorgar wasn't happy with that, since Argel Tal had been the one closest to his vision for humanity (and also because he thought Erebus trusted his visions too much), so he told Khârn what happened. So the next time Erebus was chillin' out amongst the World Eaters, fighting a couple of duels to first blood for the fun, Kharn stepped into the arena and challenged him. Sanguis Extremis, or battle to death, because Erebus teamkilled Argel Tal MURDERED HIS LAST FRIEND. Erebus, who'd never seen any of this in his visions, was taken completely by surprise and had the crap beaten out of him EVER LOVING SHIT BEATEN OUT OF HIM AS THE ENTIRE WORLD EATERS LEGION LET OUT A COLLECTIVE "DAAAAAAAAAAAMN!" He was completely, utterly taken apart by a furious Khârn, losing one hand and almost his life but he escaped death by teleporting away just before the deathblow landed because he's a cowardly fuck.

After this misadventure, the slimy motherfucker decide he better put half the galaxy's distance between him and the World Eaters, so he went back to hang out with Horus. He tried to corrupt Sanguinius by setting up a trap for him where a couple of Greater Daemons (Ka'Bandha and Kyriss the Perverse) teamed up to murderfuck the hell out of a whole planetary system and use the power from said sacrifice to exacerbate the Red Thirst and Black Rage in the Blood Angels (by the time of the Heresy, it only happened extremely infrequently, and Erebus only knew about it thanks to Horus witnessing Sanguinius having to put down one of his Legionnaires). The whole plan was to engineer things so the whole Legion succumbed and then offer Sanguinius to free them from the flaw forever... if only he'd join Chaos' side. This endeavor notably failed because Apothecary Meros sacrificed himself instead of Sanguinius to absorb the Black Rage, and also because Horus had given orders to Ka'Bandha to actually kill the Angel. So when Erebus learned his masterful plan had been ruined, he got pissy at Horus for throwing the whole plan into disarray. Horus took his "reasonable" complaints under careful consideration and, in an unparalleled act of restraint, skinned the devious arsehole's face off (instead of ultra-killing him on the spot like everyone else present, even his fellow Word Bearers, expected), 'cos he's Motherfucking Horus and he doesn't like being told what to do by slimy little scheming fuckers.

Not that it really mattered, however, because beauty is only skin deep and Erebus doesn't give a fuck about how he looks (and he picked up the trick to use Warp energy to regenerate from his Primarch), so he just continued being an absolute ass. Following this, Erebus decided that he had learnt nothing over the last few years and decided to dick over a Primarch less likely to rape him sideways - Vulkan. He achieved this by teamkilling a bunch of loyal followers executing a yet another treacherous and incompetent bitch of an Apostle who wanted to take his place (because, yes, there's something of a "become Caliph in the place of the Caliph" contest going on amongst the Dark Apostles) and making sure that John Grammaticus got away with a Primarch killing weapon. Johnny took the fulgurite (a mote of the Emperor's psychic lightning given physical form; nothing less!) to Macragge in order to use it on Vulkan, because doing exactly what Erebus wants you to do can only lead to good things... Or not, since Grammaticus ended up using it on himself thanks to the intervention of an even bigger dick. But it doesn't matter, since Erebus still has a bunch of other convoluted plans going on all at once! (You might wonder, but no, he doesn't serve Tzeentch exclusively.)

At one point during the Horus Heresy, he made a (way too ambitious) attempt to assassinate The Emperor, by making use of a Blank merged with a demon. (Don't even ask.) Without Horus knowing, he sent the abomination to go and hunt for the Emperor's blood. The mission was of course doomed to fail, when he intercepted a strike force of Imperial Assassins, sent to kill Horus. They ended up killing each other, much to Erebus' frustration. Horus, in the end, found out and forbid the use of assassins as weapons to Erebus, considering them tools for cowards. We all know how well that ended up.

He now spends his time playing games of chess with Kor Phaeron, with entire companies and fleets of Word Bearers as the pieces. For giggles, naturally. Erebus currently holds a position in Lorgar's Dark Council. He showed up in the 13th Black Crusade to sacrifice a million innocents to the gods of Chaos, and then, having apparently fulfilled his contract and knowing they were going to fail once more, took his warriors and got the hell out of there. He has shown notable distaste for Abaddon's status as Warmaster of Chaos, believing that a new Warmaster is needed. Which goes to show that just because you've spent ten thousand years chilling in the Eye of Terror doesn't mean that you forfeit common sense. Pity he can't do much about his own boss's capacity to lead. Which is diddly-damn fine by him, since he gets half a legion and no Primarch to cramp his style.

Because GW wants you to improve your culture, you should know that Erebus is the Latin name of the Greek god Erebos (meaning "darkness" in ancient Greek... seriously who the fuck would name a child this way?), who was one of the first beings to emerge out of Chaos. And it quite suits him since he is a Chaos Space Marine, and the very first one to boot.

Leaked concept art of Erebus' surprise appearance in Warhammer Adventures

On the Tabletop[edit]

Erebus now has rules for your Word Bearers Space Marine Legion list. He has Zealot, Adamantium Will, Master of the Legion and Harbinger of Chaos which allows all Word Bearers to use Dark Channeling, which has you roll a D6 for every squad this is given to at the beginning of the game. On a 1-3 unit gains Zealot special rule, 4-5 gains +1 strength for the duration of the battle, and on a 6 the unit gains the Daemon special rule for the duration of the battle, but no longer counts as scoring (if it did before) and counts as being destroyed at the end of the game for the purposes of calculating victory points. He is also a Level 1 Psyker who can draw from Biomancy or Telepathy and counts as a Master of the Legion, Diabolist, and Chaplain, freeing up your other HQ slots for whatever floats your boat.

Famous members of the Traitor Legions
Originating from
the Canon:
Abaddon - Ahzek Ahriman - Argel Tal - Cypher - Doomrider - Eidolon
Erebus - Fabius Bile - Honsou - Iskandar Khayon - Kharn - Kor Phaeron
Lheorvine Ukris - Lucius - Lugft Huron - Luther - Necrosius the Undying
Sevatar - Shon'tu - Svane Vulfbad - Talos - Typhus - Ygethmor - Zhufor
Originating from
the games:
Araghast the Pillager - Azariah Kyras - Bale - Crull - Eliphas The Inheritor
Firaeveus Carron - Kain - Nemeroth - Neroth - Sindri Myr - Varius