Index Astartes: Knights Griffon
‘With the wings of Griffons, we ride! With Talons of Griffons, we strike!’
Name: Knights Griffon
Chapter Master: (Deceased as of the Lygcax Massacre – 988M41; Appointment pending)
Home world: Lawrencian Secundus
Founder Chapter: Raven Guard
[A tactical marine (unusually armed with a chainsword and bolt pistol) and Terminator from the 3rd and 1st companies respectively]
In the years 478M35, an Imperial Expedition was sent out to investigate an uncategorised star system. The Mechanicus Explorator teams and a contingent of Raven Guard assigned to the expedition were the first to set down upon the first planet they came across, a temperate and luscious world, with green pastures and oceans spreading as far as the eye could see. Even the Mechanicus and Astartes were overcome by the majestic sight. As they began to spread from the landing area, they came across a village of humans, living in a pre black powder state. The native inhabitants were curious yet terrified of the massive Space Marines who had first encountered them. Ambassadors were called down from the fleet to negotiate terms, yet the inhabitants realised who they had met with a glance to the golden eagle symbol of the visitors. They bowed to them, proclaiming them to be the servants of the Griffon Lord, their deity. From further investigation, the deity turned out to be a aspect of the Emperor, from a long ago lost colony.
After meeting with some of the planet’s leaders, they discovered the world was in turmoil, caught in a barbaric war that spanned continents. Borders were fought over day after day, men and boys being sent to fight. The Imperial delegates also came across knowledge of a mountain range named Hell’s Pass, situated in the heart of the largest continent, one that no man would cross for fear of wrath from the Griffon Lord. The delegates parted the world with great farewell. Yet secretly, unbeknownst to the natives, the Raven Guard remained. The Astartes began to create a stronghold in the Hell’s Pass Mountains.
The Expedition also mapped another inhabited planet, an Ice world with feral natives, similar to the tribes’ peoples of Fenris. This world was visited only briefly, and being earmarked for a world perfect for Astartes recruitment.
As the High Lords commissioned another Astartes founding, the system was earmarked for a chapter to build its home world there. The chapter would be derived from the Raven Guard gene-seed, and be based in the father chapter’s stronghold in the Hell’s Pass Mountains. The chapter chose a name, reflecting their home and their heritage. The Knights Griffon were born.
System Layout and data
Griffon’s Heart [Phi grade star [CODE=74J53G]]
Prometian VI (Uninhabitable)
Hera’s fall (Hive World, Mining World)
Lawrencian Primaris (Agri World)
Lawrencian Secundus (Feudal World, Home world of the Knights Griffon Chapter)
Hazfarax (Hazardous environment training world [plasma storms])
Propina (Feral ice world)
Lexanic III (Uninhabitable)
Tithe Grade – Adeptus Non
The system’s layout, with most of the planets in the ‘Goldilocks zone’ can cause problems with year length and weather patterns due to many of the planet’s magnetic fields interacting and disrupting one another, causing unseasonly storms or even natural disasters such as volcanoes and earthquakes to occur.
The ice world of Propina is a perfect recruitment ground for prospective Astartes. The Knights Griffon allows other chapters, who are favoured by the Griffons, to recruit from here.
The chapter recruits from two planets, Propina and Lawrencian Secundus. Both have provided excellent grounds for what the chapter calls ‘The Great Harvest’.
Upon the home world of Lawrencian Secundus, each of the four warring nations holds a separate gladiatorial contest for the youths of the nation, the prospective neophytes travelling from all corners of their home nation to the capital’s Grand Arena. All know that if they enter, they will not return to their families, yet they enter still, as to be victorious is to become a champion of the Griffon Lord and to fight alongside him in the Final War against evil. This is only partially true, as those victorious will only be selected for initial training for the Knights Griffon. The Astartes themselves, and only the Astartes, will oversee the tournament, which lasts for a full week before those left alive and standing are taken for further training via Thunderhawk to the chapter’s fortress, The Citadel. Those who fail are executed mercilessly be the Griffons as they have seen the Marines in the flesh. This is to keep the alluded mystery of the Emperor’s warriors kept as a myth.
Upon Propina, it is different. The migratory tribes always have known of the Marines, and welcome them to their tribes to select the strongest, fastest and brightest of their young people. Each tribe believes that only their tribe is visited by these majestic warriors, and many disputes are fought over this fact between the tribes’ peoples. However, it is not only the Griffons who recruit from this world, as pacts made with the Black Templars and Dark Angels allow these chapters to recruit from this world. The recruits of the Griffons are taken to The Citadel upon Lawrencian Secundus to begin their training.
The inductees are rigorously tested and trained to the peak of fitness that their human bodies will allow before going through the full testing. Each of the tests is geared to a specific form of combat or survival. After each trial is passed, the applicant is implanted with an Astartes organ, enhancing their performance for the coming tests. The trials are as thus:
1.The Trial of the Falcon: The Neophytes must run through a gauntlet of whirring blades and combat servitors armed with shock blades designed to stun then slice. The applicant must avoid any contact with any blades at all and reach the end of the 200 metre passage of death. After this, they are implanted with the first implants, the Haemastemen and Larraman’s Organ.
2.The Trial of the Swift: The applicant must run for ten hours without fail. If they falter or collapse, they are taken away and fail. The organs implanted in the ones who pass are the Occulobe, Omophagea, Catalepsean Node and the Biscopea
3.The Trial of the Hawk: The neophyte is made to navigate the Hell’s Pass to reach the Citadel. They are armed with a knife and a single canteen of water. After the test, they are implanted with the Preomnor, Oolitic Kidney, Neuroglottis, Lyman’s Ear, Multi-Lung and Ossmodula.
4.The Trial of the Griffon: The neophyte is to take to combat against fifty armed combat servitors. They are not armed or clothed, and must defeat all of the servitors to pass the trial. The final implants, the Mucranoid, Secondary Heart, Betchers Gland, Sus-an Membrane and Progenoid Glands, are inserted into the new Marine. Only by completing his time in the scout company, may he gain his Black Carapace.
Throughout these trials and the long hours of surgical implantation, the applicants undergo rigorous training and psycho indoctrination, along with regular screening for tainting from the dark powers.
The many who do fail are still valued by the chapter, and are used in a rearguard force named the Griffon’s Claws. This, highly elite force of men serve the Griffons in many ways, servicing equipment alongside the techmarines, assisting the Apothecaries and even fighting alongside the Knights Griffon in battle. They are proud to do so, and many of them spend their entire lives in the service of the chapter.
Famous battles of the Knights Griffon
The Knights Griffon chapter has taken part in many major engagements throughout their history. Only a select few have been listed here.
The Ganymede Maximus Campaign – 989M41
The Ganymede Maximus system lies close to the Tau Empire, and has been a prime target for the alien race for it’s wealth of minerals and fertility. The Tau invaded the system in 988M41 after much deliberation between their leaders. The Imperium responded immediately, sending in a taskforce of Imperial Guard and Space Marines. The Space Marines consisted of 5 companies, the 1st, 2nd and 4th of the Knights Griffon and the 3rd and the 1st of the Ultramarines led by Marneus Calgar himself.
The assault began well, the first world falling back under Imperial control in two weeks. The next planet was when the problems arised. The Tau were heavily dug in, and a direct assault would be suicide. The two commanders discussed tactics for a long period of time while the Imperial Guard began whittling down the enemy with artillery and aerial bombardment. Weaknesses began to appear and the two force of marines capitalised on that, taking down each strong hold and colony with unrelenting pace.
After three weeks of fighting, a luck discovery found the headquarters of the Tau command. Vassakov was prepped and ready for a Terminator and Jump pack led assault upon the other targets surrounding the headquarters. Marneus disagreed with the plan, saying he needed the Knights Griffon and all of his warriors to assault the main base to decentralise enemy morale. Vassakov argued back that he had marines captured in the outlying posts and needed to retrieve them. Marneus sympathised with the young 1st captain and let him proceed with the mission.
The rescues were successful, but once again, the Griffons took heavy casualties. One of Marneus’ honour guard insulted Vassakov for his lack of thought and recklessness. The captain took offence and called for an honour duel, much like the ones undertaken upon Lawrencian Secundus, using their favourite weapon unpowered till first blood. Marneus disagreed with the duel and tried to stop it, saying they should be fighting the enemy not each other. But it was too late; honour had been insulted and needed to be satisfied.
The duel took place at midday on the day of the victory against the Tau invaders. A duelling ring was constructed hastily, with warriors of both chapters watching the event from opposite sides of the ring. The warriors entered, Vassakov bearing the Griffons Talons, two arm mounted blades that could cut through almost anything, while the honour guard bore his Axe of Ultramar. The duel was fierce; both warriors not backing down or letting a hit strike their armour. That was until Vassakov tricked the Honour Guard to attempting to strike, kicking him in the stomach and sending the man flying. Vassakov leapt upon him, holding his blade to his throat, causing the Ultramarine to yield.
The campaign finished without difficulty, the two chapters working in harmony with one another, both having a grudging respect for each Chapters fighting skills. The two Chapters parted with a short farewell, the Honour Guard apologising for his deed. Vassakov and the Griffons forgave him, and parted friends.
The Turning – 935M41
The Knights Griffon chapter has always been an Emperor worshipping chapter all the way through. Yet all this was tarnished with the events on this date.
The 7th and the 6th companies were on campaign in the Eye of Terror, fighting against the 13th Black Crusade. It was during the defence of an Imperial held agri-world, that the 7th company was corrupted by the foul powers of Chaos. The 6th company were shocked. Their own brothers had turned against all they stood for. Captain Janthium was outraged and at once attacked the traitorous force. They had also commissioned an Inquisitorial force to help them purge the 7th from history.
What responded was more than the Knights Griffon expected. The call was answered by none other than the Grey Knights, bringing in 30 of their elite marines to stem the chaos influx. The war lasted over two months, the two Knights Griffon companies, one loyal, one corrupt, tore each other apart.
Out of the ashes of the war, the remnants of the 6th company emerged victorious. The Inquisitorial force kept what was left of the company in quarantine for the next two years, searching them for any taint upon them. The company was cleared and released to return back to the chapter.
The Inquisition has kept tabs on the Knights Griffon ever since, lest it happens again. A deletion order was put in place to remove the existence of the 7th company as it stood, going back over 1200 years, much to the anger of the then chapter master Gerio Seris. Since the fateful event, multiple sightings have been reported of traitor Space Marines wearing the colours of the Griffons, yet covered in gore and referring to themselves as the Brotherhood of Fire. The Griffons have a undying hatred of these marines, and hunt them down with righteous fury.
The chapter has suffered many casualties in recent years, a large chunk of these were inflicted in the attempt at stopping Waaagh! Skullkrak coming to be in the galactic south. The chapter’s current strength lies as thusly:
Chapter Master: (Deceased as of the Lygcax Massacre – 988M41; Appointment pending)
1st (Veteran) Company: (Acting chapter master) Captain Enazio Vassakov – Vassakov has been the Acting Chapter Master for the past 12 years while the chapter finishes their campaigns and returns to the Citadel to elect the next Chapter Master
2nd (Battle) Company: (Captain Deceased)
3rd (Battle) Company: Captain Cyrian Firenze (Master of the Armoury) – The youngest Griffon captain on record at only 300 years of service.
4th (Battle) Company: (Captain Deceased) – The company has been commanded by Master Chaplain Skirax for the past twelve years since the death of Captain Arca.
5th (Battle) Company: Captain Simoleo (Master of the Fleet)
6th (Tactical) Company: Captain Janthium (Master of the Watch)
7th (Tactical) Company: =][= ALL RECORDS DELETED FROM ARCHIVE =][=
8th (Assualt) Company: Captain Lucien Mort (Master of Claws)
9th (Devastator) Company: Captain Daimage (Master of the Guns)
10th (Scout) Company: Captain ‘Splinter’ (Master of the Recruits)
Librarium: Chief Librarian Phitax, 12 Librarians
Apothercarion: Master Healer Hiporacae, 31 Apothecaries (Spread throughout the chapter’s command squads and units)
Armoury: Master of the Forge Matthias, 19 Techmarines, 108 Tech-Servitors, 18 Predators, 12 Vindicators, 14 Whirlwinds, 29 Land Raiders (all variants) 45 Land Speeders (Typhoon, Tornado included), 12 Land Speeder Tempests, 39 Razorbacks.
Fleet: 3 Battle Barges (Heracles, Daedalus, Caldecott’s Wrath), 10 Strike Cruisers, 27 Light attack craft, 76 Thunderhawks (all variants)
When a company suffers casualties, the units left from the reserves are cycled through to the Battle companies as to upkeep a fighting strength. This does however; leave the reserve companies undermanned in long campaigns.
The chapter has suffered some heavy casualties in the last few years of campaigning, and with some shortage of supply of certain raw materials, a lack of Power armour has started to take its toll in the system. The reason for this is due to a multitude of mining worlds being raided by piratical Eldar. The Griffons have been aided by the Raven Guard in repelling these attacks, yet the problem still continues.
The chapter has a large fleet presence that is immersive in the Knights Griffon’s tactics, and also serves to provide a way of spreading their men through out the fleet as not to lose them all in one ship.
The chapter is renowned for being surgical and precise, as well as being arrogant and headstrong. The chapter uses specialist infiltration techniques to pinpoint, sabotage and eliminate high priority targets in the enemy force, destabilising morale and assisting in ripping the enemy from the inside out.
In most situations, the companies will use mechanised assaults to surround and cut off enemy supplies, convoys and advances. The chapter usually operates outside of the Imperial command structure entirely, using their own plans to disrupt the enemy armies and allow the main assault forces of the Imperial Guard to mop up in their wake.
The Captains of each company work in synchronisation thanks to a communal battle link that lets the members of each company know what is happening and what will happen. For instance, whirlwind bombardment just before another company assaults. This courtesy is rarely extended to other Imperial Forces however.
Beliefs of the Knights Griffon
The Knights Griffon chapter is extremely pious, launching Crusades against tyranny and Chaos every century. They follow the Imperial Creed closely. They view the Imperium, however, as a machine, nothing more, which is necessary to keep the human race alive. They see every citizen as a piece of that machine and respect other Imperial authorities for their jobs. They wouldn’t tell an Adept how to run a cogitator, nor will they let any other organisation tell them how to fight a war.
Because of this belief, the Knights Griffon limit civilian casualties to the best of their abilities, even saving the citizens to evacuate them from the main war zone [See the Assault on Helical VI record].
Allies and Enemies
The Chapter has allies, coming in the form of the Raven Guard, Hawk Lords, Dark Angels, Imperial Fists, Legio Annihilatum, Legio Hades, Varonian Guard, Black Templars and the Space Wolves. The Knights Griffon also have a grudging respect for the Angels of Gore, Grey Knights and the Inquisition.
They have also made many enemies during their service in the Emperors name. These include the Iron Warriors [See Purging of Hydrax III], Warriors of Mayhem [Formerly the Striking Eagles], The Brotherhood of Fire [Formerly the Knights Griffon 7th company (rumoured)], Warboss Skullkrak and the Tau.
‘With the wings of Griffons, we ride! With Talons of Griffons, we strike!’ – Shouted by all when the force is immanent to contact with the enemy.
‘By wings of fire, for the Emperor and the Griffon!’ – Shouted by all when the force is immanent to contact with the enemy.
As a Raven Guard founding chapter, the geneseed of the Knights Griffon is generally stable. No significant mutations have occurred, but the marines show a lack of hormones controlling skin balance, resulting in a pale complexion.
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Edited by Firenze, 04 August 2010 - 05:18 PM.