A once agri-world now frozen shit hole of genetically modified sub-zero rain forests that attracts Chaos like unattended children attract 80s BBC presenters.
Why Is This The Case
Back in M33 when the Imperium was relatively new and full of hope a tribal knuckle dragger of the frozen south by the name of Iohannes the Coldblooded decided that he had had enough of this "Worshiping the God-Emperor" malarkey and would find better gods. With Black Jack. And hookers.
At some point in his travels of the wastelands the demented little spod actually managed to find some new gods who shows him such wonderful thing.
A few later everything has gone tits up for sensible people and bands of nutters, hooligans and possessed retards are running around the planet raping, murdering and eating everyone they can find. Lead by Iohannes the Coldblooded whose ascendancy was gifted to him by Khorne, after he caused the first incursion, freezing the polar regions over with his cold unfeeling spite. He converted thousands of the downtrodden, poor, and mentally insane, to commit heresies of a large scale. They constructed massive gates of permafrost, and sacrificed themselves in order to bring about what could have been annihilation for all of Serik. But due to Iohannes own selfishness and lust for power he made a foolhardy rush towards the capital, Where all seemed to be going well, until the forces of the polar redoubt bombed their own city to the ground. To this day he has been enraged over his defeat, but not the frothing rage that his berzekers wield in bloody war, no this is a seething rage only for those who have had it all, and then thrown it away for their own glory.
The PDF and tribal auxiliary eventually get their shit together but not before Iohannes the Coldblooded sat briefly on the throne, the seat of authority on that planet. Briefly. In that moment he went from merely blessed to Ascendant, a true Deamon-Prince.
For a brief moment Serik-Lambda was a deamon-world. Unholy abominations, abortions of reality, the ghosts of things that never were and couldn't have been, nightmares made flesh and the souls of the damned manifested in a world made into a new Hell.
A Hell that lasted for less than 5 seconds.
Goran "The Ambitious" Blaco, then just a tribal chieftain, had been in mid flight from the broken skylight and was heading towards the usurper at just the moment that the improvised explosives went off. The result was that one barbarian went upwards extremely fast whilst the other barbarian was traveling downwards and holding an axe. Deamon-Prince or not that axe-blade, blessed by a humble tribal priest, bisected the warlords head.
The warp-corruption of Serik-Lambda hadn't reached saturation point and with the loss of the Coldblooded Prince momentum was lost.
Chief Goran's body was found impaled on the sword of a statue of Sanguinius nearly two days later still alive in a manner that was heralded by the holy men of the tribes as a miracle.
The brief moment the world was one food in the immaterium caused it to re-materialize not quite where it should have been and not quite with the same axial tilt.
A conclave of war-preachers from the ranks of the PDF and tribal auxiliary declared that Chief Goran, being so obviously blessed, should rule Serik-Lambda in the God-Emperor's name. His reign from that day until death which they assumed would be either until frostbite took its toll or the tinned food ran out which ever happened first.
2 months later an Imperial fleet turned up in orbit to offer assistance. Aboard it, unofficially and without a ticket, was an Arch-Magus of dubious repute.
The war from start to finish took a toll of ~85% of the global population
The Arrival of the Red Cloaked Pilgrim
The planet Serik-Lambda was subject to sever deamonic fuck up back in early M33 that was of such magnitude that is knocked the planet out of its previous nice stable orbit with its nice climate into a slightly further one which pushed the climate into a permanent ice age from which it has never and probably never will recover from. The axial tilt was also knocked from where it should have been. The southern pole is in permanent day whilst the north is a land of ice and night.
The ice caps started to migrate further and further south year after year and the glaciers marched unstoppably from their mountains and the winters got harsher and the summers milder and the ecology of the planet was almost completely destroyed. Needles to say it lost it's status of agri-world practically over night.
It was only by the grace of arch-magus Salathiel Pharanopolis of the Adeptus Biologicus that Serik-Lambda is even conventionally habitable today.
That particular magus was well known to the Priesthood of Mars, indeed having originated from that holy world. He was old, even by the standards of their ancient ranks. It was not uncommon back in those ancient days for the eldest of elders to remember days before the coming of the God-Emperor but Salathiel was considered old even by them and few if any could remember a time without his presence.
What drove such a venerable holy man from holy ground to a far flung and relatively insignificant world was probably the constant accusations of techno-heresy and blasphemy against the flesh. Many of these accusations were true although what counts as heresy varies greatly.
But for Serik-Lambda the pilgrim magus was never anything less than a saviour.
It was arch-magus Salathiel Pharanopolis and his disciples that twisted and spliced and cut and pasted the genes of uncountable species of plant and animal and less noticeable things. He made from that dying ecosystem a new and living world. He went for years without sleep, stopping briefly only to eat and drink and always working.
When asked why he would eventually answer that the world was to be his final legacy. One good deed to count against his earlier abominations.
He was dying and he needed one good deed to be remembered for.
The great yggdrasil trees with their hyper-diamond reinforced trunks, anti-freeze laced sap, entire food chains of tailored bacteria and invertebrates around their gargantuan roots and edible fruits miles above the permafrost are probably his most obvious miracle.
It is for this crazy magus the reason that the trees and the ice touch with no intermediary ground and frost forms in a strange jungle. Not so much a rainforest as a snowforest no less full of life.
And they never found his body. For all he talked of his death its possible it was merely a staged performance to throw the heresy hunters of red Mars from his trail and vanish amongst the stars. One day, so the folk stories of Serik-Lambda say, one day he will return.
Structure of Government
There is the governor.
Then there is a representative from each of the biggest permanent settlements be they equatorial or polar. They make up the administrative body in that they bring concerns to the governor's office and he occasionally issues them orders to enact. They are know as the Citizen's Quorum.
For the most part they do whatever the fuck they want and only bring concerns to the High Office should it be something that goes beyond their poorly defined borders.
The governor is advised by a representative from the Imperial Institution present on his planet; Commisariant, Arbiters, Imperial Guard, Mechanicus but not Ecclesiarchy as that would piss off the local preachers. Of the non-Imperial institution there is the High Priest, Grand Architect, Agriculture Minister, Headmaster Supreme, PDF and SDF Marshal and Commerce Patriarch/Matriarch.
They make up the Chairman's Board of which the governor is Chairman. They decide what happens on a global rather than local scale.
The Election of Governors
All members of the Chairman's Board are locked in a secure bunker with a list of potential candidates. Then they start ticking names off the list until they find the one with the least reasons for not having the job.
In the meantime the High Priest runs the day to day affairs.
Governors of Note
The world of Serik-Lambda has had it's fair share of noteworthy rulers since Goran "The Ambitious" Blaco. These have included
Ted the Terrible who, despite being only 5 foot 5 managed to kill a Warboss in single combat and in so doing halt a WAAAAAAAAGH!!! Since that day militart service of no less than 10 years has become a prerequisite for high government.
Solend the Hunter who made a private hunting reserve for politicians of the world, and ruined it by importing five packs of Sycean "Starving hounds" and a catachan devil, some rumors have said that the skull of one such devil lies outside of the hunting grounds.
Anabela the Foolish who lost Serik-Lambda a lot of interstellar business before she was voted out of office.
Siinná the Merchant who undid most of Anabela's fuckups.
The Current governor is Big Mad Balthazar of the Scum of the North tribe. A bear of a man with all the tact of a sledgehammer, social graces of a tidal wave and drinking capacity of a galvanized water tank.
He is also a tactical genius who earned the love of the soldiery with his screwed life loss minimizing strategies, the love of the citizens with his gruff demeanour and basic honesty for a politician and the love of the priesthoods with his bottomless but oddly irrelevant reserves of faith.
He can also make ears bleed with his singing.
Arms and Armour
The planet Serik-Lambda is famed for it's artillery men and its many historical usage of The Big Guns.
Many of the tithed men and women have found their way into the navy where they typically end up in some line of work tending the ship's cannons.
They are famed for their surface artillery partly because they are one of the few remaining worlds that can still construct and make use of the temperamental but devastatingly effective Plasma Ballistae.
Plasma Ballistae are stable forms of plasmatech, now considered archaic and superseded by more destructive and compact weapons, they remain popular with the crews who still have them in service.
The plasma is energised in the central body of the weapon, which is largely cylindrical. This is designed to contain the energised plasma indefinitely, held within the safety of overlapping power fields.
A magno-impeller field is generated by a ring that circles the barrel. This ring is attached to a spring device, like a massive primitive bow. The ring can be drawn back down the barrel by means of a motorised winch or in some models, a hand crank.
When released, the bow mechanically returns the ring to the end of the barrel and the impeller field forces the energised plasma out of the weapon and towards the enemy.
The muzzle velocity is determined by the mechanical torque exerted by the bow.
The most famous usage of the Plasma Ballistae was by Sergeant Irgyn "The Sycean" Hegez When he lead a platoon of the late lieutenant Seskt, and setting up an ambush, by having four ogryns carry the ballistae into an otherwise unreachable position. He managed to destroy 14 ork mobs and 2 trukks before he had to retreat in an orderly manner, even managing to save the ballistae.