Order of Our Lady of the Perpetual Flame (Ordo Nostrae Aeterni Ignis Dominae)
▪ HOME WORLD: Stralitsa IV, XXX System, Lysades Sub-sector, Gothic Sector, Segmentum Obscurus
▪ MAIN COLOURS: Deep Red and Bone White with Grey accents
▪ SPECIALITY: Mechanized assault, Hive warfare, and Close range firefights
▪ BATTLE CRY: Faith in the Flames
▪ CURRENT STRENGTH: 400-800 (exact number not known due to ongoing campaigns without constant contact)
▪ ALLEGIANCE: Order of Our Martyred Lady, Convent Sanctorum, Adepta Sororitas, Adeptus Ministorum, Ordo Hereticus
ORIGIN OF THE ORDER:
In 589.M38, a mission of the Order of Our Martyred Lady was sent to Stralitsa IV in the Drastar System to crush a rebellion. Working with the local ecclesiarchy, the mission was quickly able to put down protesters opposed to the local governor and cardinal, but a longer campaign was necessary to root outrevolutionary cells on the planet. It took just over one Terran year to remove the anti-Imperial forces.
Upon the completion of their task, Palatine Yianna was seized by the governor’s forces under false accusations of heresy. She was found guilty by the local cardinal and brought the next day to the square before the imperial mansion to be burned. But as the flames engulfed her, Sister Yianna did not burn. Her faith in the emperor cooled the flames, as the crowd watched for nearly an hour. Even as the fuel burned out, the flames still surrounded Yianni, who moved to attack the cardinal after her bonds had burned away. Yianni was martyred by the cardinal’s guard, but her body remained wrapped in flames. Yianni’s body would months later be recovered by her Sisters, and was found to still be wreathed in the flames though her flesh had long burned away to ash. Sister Yianni is venerated as a saint by her sisters due to the holy moments around her martyrdom.
After Sister Yianni’s martyrdom, the mission began a campaign to remove the governor and cardinal for their heresy. Preaching against the local government, the Sisters were able to turn many loyal citizens against the apostates, as well as organizing lightning raids on the traitorous and weak PDF. In five years, the Sisters were able to defeat the heretical forces and take control of the planet. For three decades, the planet was held under the control of the mission, before the Administratum and Ministorum could replace the local leadership. In this time, the planet was under the control of the mission’s newly raised palatine, Sister Eirene. Sister Eirene’s rule was harsh and unforgiving, resulting in numerous uprisings and numerous purgings of heretics and unbelievers. Upon the resumption of Administratum rule, the planet would calm. During the mission’s long stay on Stralitsa, a new convent had been established by Sister Eirene, based around those who served in the two campaigns of pacification, named Ordo Nostrae Aeterni Ignis Dominae (the Order of Our Lady of the Perpetual Flames), after the miracle of St. Yianni. They changed the color of their armor to a deep red and their robes to a bone white, to symbolize the fires surrounding the bones of St. Yianni, and adorned their armor with grey accents, for the ashes that remained of St. Yianni’s body. To this day, the Order does not fully trust the local governor or cardinal and keep a close eye on all of their activities.
Stralitsa IV is a civilized world that shares certain traits with an agriworld and is one of three inhabited planets in the Stralitsa system, the others being a Adeptus Mechanicus research station within the gas giant Stralitsa VI and the other being Stralitsa VIII, a mining world and training grounds for low gravity and atmosphere free combat for the Sororitas. The planet has a population of approximately 75 million. The southern hemisphere is temperate, but due to millennia of over farming and frequent, rapid temperature shifts due to odd wind patterns, is poorly suited to agriculture. Instead, the southern hemisphere is largely urban and industrial, and it is here that the planetary governor and cardinal live. The northern hemisphere is largely agrarian, and devoted to growing and grazing luxury foods for off planet use (either in the form of the tithe or through trade), as well as agriculture to ensure planetary self-sufficiency. The convent of the Order of Our Lady of the Perpetual Flame is located here, and it controls a large fiefdom responsible for the food production for the convent.
Tabor, Bar-El System, Agripinaa Sector, Segmentum Obscurus
The majority of the Order of Our Lady of the Perpetual Flame has been assigned to the Imperial defense and reconquest of the Agripinaa Sector during the Thirteenth Black Crusade. Due to their experiences fighting in hive cities, the majority of the Order has been assigned to the defense of the hive world Tabor. Canoness Sophronia is currently leading three quarters of the Order on this mission, but has been out of contact with the remnants of the convent left to garrison Stralitsa IV.
The Order specializes in armored assaults, pushing deep into the enemy’s position before disembarking to unleash a torrent of flame and bolter shells. The Order heavily uses Retributor squads equipped with Heavy Flamers, and prefers to equip its battle sister squads with flamers and heavy flamers; melta weapons are commonly only found on Immolators and in Dominion squads. Recent wars with Orkish threats have led to the adoption of small, fire support squads equipped with heavy and storm bolters to blunt the Xenos assaults, while still using mobile units equipped with flamers to quickly respond where the enemy was strongest and to purge the battlefield of the infestation.
ROLL OF HONOR:
The Burning of Kayzha - Part of the Purification of Stralitsa IV
Kayzha, Stralitsa IV, Stralitsa System, Lysades Sub-sector, Gothic Sector, Segmentum Obscurus
Nearly midway through the war to remove the heretic governor and cardinal of Stralitsa IV, Palatine Eirene coordinated her forces for an assault on the apostate city of Kayzha. Despite being the second largest city on the planet, the city was able to contribute little to the heretics’ war effort aside from bodies, but Sister Eirene thought that an assault on the city would massively demoralize the traitors. Fully half of the mission was organized for the assault, including nearly every piece of armor under her command. From all sides, immolators and rhinos rushed into the city, firing as much at the buildings of the city as the traitor PDF. Exorcists would fire one chord at the rebelling defenders and the next at a skyscraper or apartment block. By night, the heretics were routed and trapped in the rapidly crumbling city, as the Sisters burned with melta and flame every piece of flesh and architecture they could find. Within four revolutions, the once proud city was a charred wasteland.
The Incineration of Dome 76-J91 - Part of the Reconciliation of Plothen Underhive
Plothen Hive, Archaos, System, the Drusus Marches, Calixis Sector, Segmentum Obscurus
Start Date: 5633824.M39
End Date: 5690824.M39
A Scavvy uprising in the underhive of Plothen brought the Order of Our Lady of the Perpetual Flame to aid in quelling the uprising. Upon starting the Warp journey to Archaos, the small mission of the Order had been informed that they would merely be assisting the local PDF, who should have no problem putting down the scum and mutants. When they exited, the Sisters received a series of messages detailing the routing of the multiple PDF forces, coupled with strange accounts of what sounded like witches and heretics among the mutants. Upon arrival, the Sisters quickly mobilized in the underhive and began movements against the rebels. Their support by the PDF was minimal, with only the force’s light armor accompanying them. After a few Terrans weeks of small skirmishes with the rebels, the Sisters managed to trap a large force of the mutants in one of their hovel villages in Dome 76-J91. What began as a massacre of mutants turned into a melee as mutant witches brought daemons in from the Immaterium. The battle raged for fifty-seven thousandths of a Terran year, as daemons, heretics, and mutants were purged by the holy flame of the Emperor’s justice. Upon burning the witches and routing this group of rebels, the Sisters proceeded to incinerate the entire dome, purifying it of any potential taint.
The Martyrdom of Dvol - Part of the Orkish Infestation of Stralitsa IV
Dvol, Stralitsa IV, Stralitsa System, Lysades Sub-sector, Gothic Sector, Segmentum Obscurus
The first Orkish rock landed on the planet on 4752246.M40. By midway through 250.M40, a further three had fallen on the planet. While at first the Orks participated in ramshackled attacks on massive formations of PDF and raids on small farming communities, by late 250.M40 they had organized under the rule of Uznak Splittooth. The first large battle between the united Orkish threat and the Order and local PDF came at the small town and shrine of Dvol. The Imperial forces organized barricades and set up a series of firing positions to wait for the Orkish advance. And, not failing to disappoint, the Orks approached the city in a vast mob, charging headlong into the firing lines set up for their approach. But the withering hail of bolt shell and lasbeam was not enough to halt the Orkish assault, which spilled into the town. As the PDF wavered and sections of their lines began to route, the SIsters began chanting as a single body great hymns of courage that inspired their secular brothers and sisters to hold fast and redouble their efforts against the Orks. Throughout the night and into the morning the battle raged as the Sisters slowly retreated through the town to take up defensive positions at the Shrine of St. Harmon, where the entire defense force, save one sister who fled, would fall. However, during the final assault on the shrine the Warboss Uznak was felled, sending the Orkish forces into even greater chaos in the aftermath of the battle, allowing the Order ample time to prepare greater defenses in the surrounding countryside.
The Sack of Mataix Spire - Part of The Purging of Tarhel Hive, Part of the Gothic War
Tarhel Hive, Bladen, Bladen System, Lysades Sub-sector, Gothic Sector, Segmentum Obscurus.
Start Date: 4220158.M41
End Date: 4381159.M41
Towards the end of the Gothic War, the Order of Our Lady of the Perpetual Flame was called upon to aid in reclaiming the eastern hemisphere of the hive world Bladen. Canoness Prokopia Ptoliporthia was given command of the efforts to retake Tarhel Hive in 4983157.M41 by Lord General Aact Rakho, after the death of General Galeazz Biskon. The walls of the hive had already been breached by the Legio Fulmen, creating an opening to the hive city. While the already long siege had cut the population of the hive to a small fraction of what it once was, the dark powers had managed to keep the hive thick with the vilest sorts of mutants, mad cultists, and dark daemons. On 4220158.M41, Canoness Prokopia’s Sisters had made their way to Mataix Spire where the heretic leadership was. Squadrons of Dominions rushed through the highest reaches of the upper city to breach the adamantium walls of the spire, followed closely by the great shields of Exousia squadrons, pushing through a mass of mutant bodies. Even as the defenders all laid dead within the first few hundred yards of the spire, daemons continued to pour into the hive from the Immaterium, through a rip in reality created by the vile sorcerers of the heretics. For eight weeks, the Sisters pushed through the hordes of daemons, purging the tainted spire with holy promethium, until the prayers of the Sisters and of Canoness Prokopia reached the Emperor, and the rift was closed, sated by the carnage wrought upon the dark beasts.
The Order of Our Lady of the Perpetual Flame largely follows standard Sororitas organization. The primary exception is the formation of dedicated close combat squads made up of Celestians called Exousia squads. It was during the Ork Infestation of 246–478.M40 that the Order first organized Exousia squads. The Order suffered a number of pyrrhic victories and defeats every time that even small numbers of Orks were able to reach their lines. To address this problem, they formed these squadrons to meet any Orkish threat that could survive the hail of bolt shell and flame to reach their lines. They consisted of groups of Sisters equipped with great storm shields to blunt the Xenos assault and Sisters fitted with combat blades and given doses of Onslaught (previously kept by the Mission for dosing Penitent Engines and Arcoflagellants) who would charge through gaps opened in the shieldwall to sow havoc in the Orkish mobs. They are accompanied by Dialogi practiced in the hymnals of the blessed Ministorum and trained in the use of the holy eviscerator, to aid in the dispatching of Orkish walkers. The members of these squads tend to cover themselves or their shields in the divine words of the Lectio Divinatus.
Standard color scheme of the Order
The Order of Our Lady of the Perpetual Flame follow the beliefs of the Sororitas and Ecclesiarchy very faithfully. Their only minor divergence from standard Sororitas belief is their distrust of the local branch of the Adeptus Ministorum; the Order likes to keep a close watch on the Ecclesiarchy and is quick to root out potential heresy. While this is a duty shared by all Sisters, the Order of Our Lady of the Perpetual Flame is more eager than most to see to these duties.
The Order of Our Lady of the Perpetual Flame’s convent takes in a significant number of orphans from the Stralitsa System to be sent to the Schola Progenium on Acre in the Port Maw Sub-sector of the Gothic Sector. It is from this Schola that the majority of the convent’s recruits are drawn. Unfortunately, most of the female progena raised there end up becoming naval officers due to the high number of recruits that Battlefleet Gothic requires from the Schola. The Abbey of the Dawn, a Sororitas training facility on Iocanthos in the Calixis Sector, also provides a number of the new recruits for the Order of Our Lady of the Perpetual Flame.
When a novice is to be inducted into the order, she fully dons her armor before the congregation of the entire convent. Her armor is then painted with a thin layer of holy promethium, and she kneels before the relics of St. Yianni the Erythromartyr and begins chanting requests for the Saint to beg the Emperor to strengthen her will. As she is doing this, the Canoness Preceptor (or the highest ranked sister present at the convent) lights the novice’s armor on fire. When the flames extinguishes itself, she will be a full sister of the Adepta Sororitas. This ritual is only very rarely fatal.
ORDER BANNERS OR BATTLE STANDARDS:
The Order’s heraldry is a light grey fleur-de-lys sitting atop a pool of flame.
HONORS, RELICS, DECORATIONS AND AWARDS:
The Order’s most prized relic are the remains of St. Yianni. They maintain a reliquary of her bones, still alight in the holy flames of the Emperor, in the chapel of their convent. The Order also keeps a Mantle said to have been worn by St. Sabbat during her Crusade that was recovered during a mission on Hesketh in late M39, as well as a sword of authority wielded by St. Asceline, recovered from a desecrated shrine during the scouring of Pemko Hive on Lo.
"Faith in the Flames!"
CHAMPIONS OF THE ORDER:
St. Yianni the Erythromartyr - A palatine of the Order of Our Martyred Lady and considered the founder of the Order. She was martyred by traitors after a campaign to pacify Stralitsa IV, which led to a longer campaign to pacify the new outbreak of unbelief on the planet. Though technically not of the order, she is venerated by the Order and seen as their patroness, who intercedes with the Emperor for their prayers.
Palatine Eirene Tagmatokos - Yianni’s successor, who in actuality was the founder of the Order. She led a lengthy campaign against the planetary governor and cardinal after their unbelief was revealed. Despite being outnumbered many times over by the governor’s PDF and the cardinal’s fanatics. Primarily a warrior, Eirene was not well skilled in strategy, and her assaults tended to be result in high casualties for the loyalist frateris and sororis militia she was able to rally to her aid. Her brief governorship of the planet was brutal and characterized by frequent purges of those suspected of heresy.
Mistress Fokaina Xenoktoni - The sole survivor of the Martyrdom of Dvol, Sister Fokaina removed her armor and took up the penitential cloth and eviscerator of the Repentia. Over the next decade, Sister Fokaina would charge headlong into battle time and again with the other repentant sisters of the Order, seeking absolution in service and martyrdom, but while her sisters often fell with each headlong charge into a vast mob or squadron of Orkish walkers, Sister Fokaina again and again survived the battle unscathed. On the tenth anniversary of taking the Oath of the Penitent, Sister Fokaina was granted absolution after slaying the Warboss Snrub, and allowed to take up her armor and bolter once again. She served for in a Exousia squadron before eventually becoming a Mistress of the Order’s repentia, leading into death and absolution those who were once as she was.
Canoness Preceptor Sophronia Airetoktoni - The current canoness preceptor of the Order, Sophronia gained great renown within the Order during a witch hunt on Anvil 206 after tracking down a rogue psyker in the ash wastes between Horn 27 Hive and Step 03 Hive. She would later take command of a small mission that had been sent to aid the White Consuls in reclaiming GS/PC45 from a prisoner revolt and chaos incursion, and led her Sisters in the frontal assault on the heretics' central compound. She would be named the Canoness Preceptor of the Order after her predecessor, Canoness Eudoxia, died while combating feral Orks on Stralitsa IV. Sophronia would later avenge her predecessor, slaying the Orkish warboss in single combat.
Edited by Ficinus, 29 April 2016 - 04:13 AM.