Revision: v. 1.8 Minor edits for clarity, grammar, and so forth.
Revision: v. 1.7 Gene-Seed flaw added, trying to expand info on the Marines themselves.
Revision: v. 1.5 Several sections reorganized, added bit of history with the Blood Angels; Continued purge of Typo Daemons.
Revision: v. 1.3 "Origins" section much shorter than original draft. "Battle Cry" section added.
Revision: v. 1.2 "Beliefs" section added; "Scouts" entry revised; A few minor typo and tiny fixes.
Founding chapter: White Scars
Founding: Seventh Founding
Chapter Master ("Duc"): Duc Claude du Khan
Homeworld: Perdu III
Fortress-Monastery: Lune Fantôme ("Ghost Moon")
Main colours: Dark Grey Armor, White Tirm, with distinct Bone White Left Arm
Specialty: Urban Warfare, Fast Attack
Battle Cry: "We come. We conquer."
Estimated strength: ~600 Battle-Brothers, as of 999.M41
The history of the Grey Ghosts begins with their primogentors, the White Scars and their Primarch, Jaghatai Khan, one of the greatest military strategists of all time. The people of the Grey Ghosts' homeworld have created copious and often wildly exaggerated records of the Primarch's exploits.
During the Great Crusade, the Primarch was given command of the Fifth Legion, which renamed themselves the White Scars. The White Scars went on to fight in some of the bloodiest battles of the Great Crusade and the lightning fast style of Jaghatai Khan would prove equally effective on the countless battlefields on countless worlds. One of the many worlds that the White Scars conquered for the Emperor was a long-forgotten hiveworld named Perdu III.
The Grey Ghosts favor the close combat of urban warfare and excel in such environments. Although the lighting warfare of their Battle Companies may seem reckless in such built up enviroments this is not the case as they have eyes and ears few notice.
The Grey Ghosts Chapter is organized slightly differently than even their primogentors, the White Scars, although the Grey Ghosts do have higher proportion of Bike Squads and Land Speeder squadrons than many Chapters, they do not quite rise to the level of the White Scars. The Grey Ghosts specialization in urban comaby encourages the use of man-portable heavy weapons over armored vehicles and as a result, unlike the White Scars, the Grey Ghosts do deploy Devastator squads. Due to the urban and hive enviroments, their Assault Squads make limited use of jump-packs or drop pods, instead these specialist Marines almost always deploy mounted on Bikes.
Dreadnoughts, as known to other chapters, are not employed by the Grey Ghosts, as the cold, metal sarcophagi of these mighty constructions evokes a horror of eternal confinement that goes against the shamanist philosophy, inherited from the White Scars, that when a warrior dies, his soul should be free to travel to the afterlife. The chapter has developed similar weapons of war, named Chevaliers, which are piloted by a living member of the veteran First Brotherhood.
The Grey Ghosts differ most notably from the Codex Astartes in the overall organization of their Chapter, although they adhere to most of its tennents when in battle. The Grey Ghosts are organized into seven Brotherhoods rather than ten Companies; the Chapter's equivalent to the Codex Astartes' four Battle Companies are its Second, Third, and Fourth Brotherhoods. These three Brotherhoods, at full strength, consists of ten squads of Battle-Brothers and has attached directly to it a further ten squads of neophyte Scouts. This close intigration of the Scouts is thought by the Chapter to have several benefits. The Battle Brotherhood's Captain has direct command and control over the Scouts, a company strong in number and always available wherever his Brotherhood may find itself. The Scouts are able to gain much from their closer relationship with the experinced battle brothers. Given the Chapter's specialization in urban warfare, having a large constingent of highly mobile and dedicated scout is seen as a great force multiplier. Generally, the scouts role is to range ahead of the main Space Marine force, preparing the way for the main advance by infiltrating enemy lines, sabotaging and gathering intelligence - causing as much chaos and disruption as possible. When circumstances warrant, the Scouts will be utilized in much the same way as a Tactical Squad, lighter armor and less specialized anti-tank weaponry being less of a liability in the built up hives and compact xenos metropollii of the 41st Millennium.
The Grey Ghosts' geneseed has experienced some degree of instability over the millennia. The Progenoid implants have an alarmingly high "failure-to-mature" rate, whereas most Astartes will have two of these glands growing each of the the germ cells needed to create future Space Marines, an unexplained flaw in the Grey Ghosts' gene-seed causes only a single Progenoid to mature in nearly 2/3 of its recruits. The chapter's Apothecarion and Adeptus Mechanicus continue to monitor the health of the Grey Ghosts, but the High Lords of Terra are satisifed that this flaw appears stable. This genetic flaw does greatly limit the rate at which the Grey Ghosts can replace their combat losses or recruit new brothers.
Perdu was founded thousands of years ago, during the early years of M23, as a mining and manufacturing colony intended to service the Navis Nobilite. The ensuing millennia have not changed its basic purpose very much; Perdu is still a world of mines, factories, refineries and processing plants. The planet is a vast powerhouse of industry, making thousands and thousands of different items for use throughout nearby planetary systems.
Nothing which can contribute to the planet's output has been left untouched. From the tops of the highest mountains to the depths of the oceans, the wealth of Perdu has been ripped out. Mountains have been reduced to rubble for the ore they contain; oceans have been turned into little more than chemical sludge ponds. The once fertile plains have disappeared under huge urban developments of great housing and factory blocks, forming new ranges of man-made mountains every bit as tall as the long since flattened natural land features. These huge towering urban complexes are known as hive-cities, or simply as hives, and their individual peaks or towers are called city-spires, ivory towers, or spires. A close group of hives is known as a hive-kingdom, there are thirteen such hive-kingdoms scattered about the surface of Perdu. Between the hive-kingdoms deserts of industrial ash cover the surface of the planet with a mobile, corrosive skin. Over this desert lies a cloud layer of airborne pollution, so that the great spires of the city hives rise from a drifting mist of tainted vapour like islands out of the sea.
Despite being reduced to such a hellish state, Perdu is still a valuable world to the Imperium. Although little of Perdu's original resources remain, the waste-heaps of previous generations have become a new source of riches. Perdu lives on the accumulated wastes of its past: its people have learned to scavenge, reclaim and recycle everything in order to squeeze a living from their exhausted world. The other planets in Perdu's system and neighboring stars are all mining worlds or agriworlds that serve no purpose beyond feeding Perdu's factories and laborers. The ancient shipyards, once the pride of the Navis Nobilite, have become some of the greatest salvage yards in the sector... capabable of stripping the remains of enitre battlefleets and rebuilding new vessels from the corpses of the old.
Perdu's population has increased well beyond the planet's capacity to support it. As a consequence it is wholly reliant on synthetic and imported food. Each hive has its recycling plants which convert used organic matter into synthetic food. Real food is imported from off-planet, but is an expensive luxury which only the most wealthy and prestigious of Perdu's aristocracy can afford. There are probably more people on Perdu than have ever lived in the entire history of Terra up until the end of the twentieth century. An attempted census of Hive Quan Primus four thousand years ago revealed an estimated population of a billion in the upper habitation levels alone - no further attempt has been made to count Perdu's population in Quan or any other of the several thousand hives on the planet.
The planet's current capital is Hive Quan Primus, one of the many hive cities that makes up the Kingdom of Quan. The hive, the largest on Perdu, is enormous in size, reaching from the surface to some 13 miles into the air, and from surface level to roughly 3.8 miles into the ground (although only the first 1.4 miles are habitable by humans), and possesses a population greater than some worlds.
Hive Quan Primus, and the Kingdom of Quan as a whole, is ruled over by King Louis-Phillipe of House Quan. The many Great Houses of the kingdom are in a constant struggle to gain power and control of the Hive Kingdom, just as the thirteen kingdoms are in a constant struggle to gain power and control of the planet.
The Grey Ghosts draw their recruits only from the upper echelons of Perdu III's society, the neo-feudal warrior caste that has more in common with the knights and cavaliers of medival worlds than the pampered industrial barrons of most hive-worlds. The Grey Ghosts see still themselves as part of the people of their homeworld, the noblesse oblige of their previous life extended to that of the whole Imperium.
"The duty of a nobleman is, first and foremost, to protect his people.
The duty of an Astartes is always, first and foremost, to protect Humanity.
I see no conflict, nor any distinction, between these duties."
-Scout Sergeant Etienne du Kwan, 2nd Brotherhood, to unnammed Space Wolf Sergeant
The society of Perdu is reasonably typical of larger Hive Worlds. No attempt is made to enforce central administration upon the entire population; indeed such a thing would prove impossible on a world where most people remain unrecorded by any authority. Instead, a kind of feudal system has evolved by which individual people owe loyalty to others, who in their turn owe their loyalty to other increasingly more powerful members of the hierarchy. Among the more stable elements of the population these loyalties are owed on a family basis, and closely related families all support each other under the hegemony of the most powerful member of their family group.
This form of urban feudalism tends to be self-regulating. Weaker houses and clans naturally seek the protection of more powerful neighbors whose powerbase then expands until it reaches the limit whereby its numbers and resources are simply too few to allow it to expand further. Where rival clans meet it is inevitable that their power will be tested in combat; the ability of a clan to exert its power being the only true measure of its influence. The endless feuds between the warriors of these clans are a fundamental part of the workings of Perdu.
When the warp storms which had cut Perdu off from the greater galaxy finally lifted, the world almost immediately came under attack by the forces of the Greenskins of Waaagh Hulka. On the thirteenth day of the thirteenth month of the Ork's invasion, Jaghatai Khan and the White Scars Legion descended from the heavens. As the Greenskin Horde plunged from the heavens in the twilight hours, smashing into the central Hive City of Lyonne Primus (the then capital), the true power of a Primarch of the Adeptus Astartes was unleashed for all to see. In the massacre that followed the the Great Khan personally slaughtered over 200 Orks, 100 to the left, 100 to the right, and then in personal combat with the mighty Warboss Bloody Hulk, struck him down with thirteen blows in violent orgy of destruction. Yet the people of Perdu did not shy away from these Angels of Death, instead the embraced their saviors and were eager to return to the light of the Emperor. They embraced these warriors who saved their world. In time their culture changed, with each of Perdu's aristocratic Houses adopting the name of one of the Great Khan's warriors are their new surname, and thirteen thousand of Perdu's sons volunteered for consideration as Space Marine recruits. The Speculum Historiale does not record the names of any who were chosen for this honor, but the people of Perdu have built many shrines and erected countless statues of the thirteen men who eventually ascended to the ranks of the Astartes. The people of Perdu spent hundreds of years idolizing and venerating Jaghatai Khan and the White Scars Legion prior to the founding of the Grey Ghosts, this influence on their culture can be seen in many ways: artistocratic families have adopted Chogrisian names, the number "thirteen" is seen as an omen of good fortune, underhive gangs often bear long, tribal facial scars, and the artistocratic warrior-class of the spires frewuently duel from the backs of motorbikes.
The White Scars Legion, and these unnamed sons of Perdu, went on to fight in some of the bloodiest battles of the Horus Heresy. The Second Founding of Space Marine Chapters, occurred not long after the Horus Heresy, in 021.M31. This division of the existing Space Marine Legions into the smaller, autonomous Chapters into which the Space Marines are now organized. The Fifth Legion was divided into five Chapters, the White Scars, Destroyers, Marauders, Rampages, and Storm Lords. There were many subsequent Foundings, the details of many lost to time or declared secrets to all but the highest of authorities of the Imperium, or known only to the Emperor himself. The gene-seed of the White Scars was used in M33 in the Seventh Founding, creating the Grey Ghosts. This chapter was given Perdu as their homeworld.
The predominant organizational unit amongst the hive-kingdoms of Perdu III is the clan or house, and a measure of this is true of the Chapter itself. Fierce rivalries, blood-feuds and internecine warfare are a way of life for the young men of the noble houses and help to prepare them for when they must fight to prove their worth to the Chapter`s Chaplains in the grand tournaments. However, once a warrior has been chosen to join the Grey Ghosts, his allegiance to kingdom and clan is replaced with loyalty to the Chapter. Warriors from different kingdoms are therefore mixed with one another in squads to break up individual loyalties. Squads are then organized into Brotherhoods, units which are roughly equivalent in size to a Codex battle company as well as a Codex scout company, though on average battlefield losses amongst the squads mean the Brotherhoods are usually slightly below full strength.
Although the chapter recruits only from the feudal aristocracy of Perdu III, the harsh life in the hive-kingdoms breeds hardy people with strong martial values and hard-working natures. Discipline, self-reliance, and honor are seen as cardinal virtues, sloth, codependency, and dishonesty are the greatest sins.The children of Perdu are taught these values from the earliest age. These are reinforced during the training as a squire that almost all warriors endure and, by the time squire is considered a warrior, they are amongst the most disciplined human fighters in the sector. The people of Perdu are taught to respect the might of the Imperium and that to strive in its name is the highest form of service a person can render to the Emperor. As such, those warriors of Perdu who are not recruited by the chapter often join the Imperial Navy, Rogue Trader Houses, or the Adeptus Arbites. Many have become minor heroes, respected throughout the segmentum.
The Ecclesiarchy and the Grey Ghosts have a stable but distant relationship, as is typical of most Chapters of the Astartes the Grey Ghosts do not adhere to the Imperial Cult of the Ecclesiarchs. However, the Chapter long ago recognized the importance of religion in keeping some sembalance of order in the depths of the hives. The Chapter allows the Adeptus Ministorum to minister and evangelize in the lower and midlevels of the hive-cities, but the aristocracy dwelling in the ivory towers practices a faith much closer to that of their Astartes lords.
The Grey Ghosts hold true to the vision of Jaghatai Khan in the ultimate unification of Humanity. They venerate the Emperor as the Ultimate Uniter and as the penultimate feudal lord, but not as a deity. The Chaplains teach their brother-marines and the rulers of Perdu III, that it is a warrior's highest duty to destroy the enemies of the Emperor. To prepare the galaxy for the day when the Emperor will rise from the Golden Throne to begin the next Great Crusade to unify the galaxy.
The Howling of the Blood (401.M34)
A strikeforce of Black Templar Space Marines kill the Cacodominus, a powerful alien psyker; the resultant psychic death-scream burns out the minds of a billion astropaths and disrupts the Astronomican, in an event historians would come to name "The Howling." Millions of ships are lost and entire sub-sectors lose contact with the wider Imperium. Elements of the Grey Ghosts' First and Second Brotherhoods were en route to a battlezone in the Ultima Segmentum as part of a greater crusade when the crusade fleet was trapped by powerful warp storms. As a the Grey Ghosts were still a very young chapter, they were embarked aboard the battlebarge of fellow Seventh Founding chapter, the Knights of Blood. During the long months trapped aboard the battle barge, many of the Knights of Blood fell to the Black Rage. Most of the details of this incident remain closely held secrets of the chapter's upper echelons. However, the Grey Ghosts have been reluctant to work with the Blood Angels or any of their successors ever since.
Shadow of the Colossus (028.M38)
Several fleets carrying intelligent telepathic centauroid creatures appear through the Tempestus and Ultima Segmentae. They claim to be denizens of Colossus fleeing enslavement and try to settle inside the borders of the Imperium. After being declared xenos horribilis in the early 39th millennium, they are completely wiped out. The Grey Ghosts destroy twelve of the alien vessels. In the late 41st millennium it is concluded that they were fleeing the Tyranids.
Creation of the Gargoyles Chapter (738.M41)
During the latest Great Founding of the Astartes, the 26th Founding, the High Lords of Terra elect to use the gene-seed of the Grey Ghosts for the creation of a new Chapter. Dubbed the Gargoyles, the new chapter is assigned garrisson duty in the Gothic Sector, which is still recovering from the Gothic War and 12th Black Crusade. Chief Librarian Antionne Hu and fifty Battle-Brothers from the First Brotherhood are honored with positions of leadership in the newborn Chapter.
The Badab War (901.M41-912.M41)
The Grey Ghosts were not involved in this conflict, as most of the Chapter's First and Second Brotherhood were occupied in the pacfication of Waaagh Hulka! (This incident marking the fourteenth recorded Waaagh led this persistent and ancient Ork Clan, which appears to be "native" to Perdu's neighboring star system.) However after the war, the shipyards of Perdu III were used by the Imperial Navy for the dismantling of much of Battlefleet Karthargo, which had seen almost all of its ships destroyed or lost during the war.
Third Armageddon War (998.M41)
The Third War for Armageddon began in 998.M41, during which of three Brotherhoods of the White Scars were deployed into the freezing wastes of Armageddon known as the Deadlands. At the request of Jubal Khan, the current Chapter Master of the White Scars, the Grey Ghost's Third Brotherhood was assigned to the White Scars sector, and were insturmental in capturing and holding the few urban centers in the Deadlands, allowing the White Scars to concentrate on moving their lines forward, leaving the Ghosts to hold their rear.
Thirteenth Black Crusade (999.M41)
The Warmaster Abaddon launches his 13th Black Crusade. The armies of Chaos Undivided lay siege primarily to Cadia, but attack many of the surrounding worlds as well. Imperial Forces launch a massive counterattack, in the largest mobilisation of both Imperial and Chaos forces seen since the Horus Heresy. The Imperium eventually pushes back the tides of Chaos, but only just barely, and at great cost. For first and only time since their founding, the Grey Ghosts left their homeworld unguarded, sending the entire First, Second, Fourth, Fifth, and Sixth Brotherhoods to the warzone. (The Third Brotherhood was still busy on Armageddon.) The Chapter sustained heavy losses, and is estimated to have between 500 to 600 Battle-Brothers, of which, up to half may still be Neophyte Scouts.
"We come. We conquer." Shouted when charging the enemy, also used as a call-and-response by Chaplains during planetfall, or queitly sworn as an oath from the shadows. Veteran scout sergeants often sumarize missions for new recruits as "We go anywhere. We see everything. We conquer all."
Edited by Ishida, 17 February 2011 - 05:28 PM.