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The Black Hand of Melanchthon - a Night Lords army blog

Night Lords Legion Horus Heresy Traitor Legions

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#1
Zuvassin

Zuvassin

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Date: 9278017.m31
Location: Segmentum Obscurus 
Source: VIII Legion Battle-Barge Lex Talionis
Authorized: Lord-Commander Jhariuk Zuvassin, Master of the 36th Company, Regent of Melanchthon
 
+ + Thought for the Day: “Wisdom is the beginning of fear.” + +
 
Oblivion comes.
 
Like blades glistening in the twilight of dead and dying stars, our enemies hunt us. Amidst the shadow and ruin of a broken empire, of their broken empire, they hunt us. Their rage and hate consume them, burning like the throne-world once burned, and shall burn again. They hunt us, seeking to wash away their failures with our blood. They hunt us, seeking vengeance, to finally master cruelty in an age that has never known anything but cruelty, to take up the roles they once condemned my masters for becoming. 
 
But the hour is late, too late, for them as well as for us. We live now amongst the echoes of treachery and despair, as blade clashes upon blade and as life is answered with life. Still, they come for us, clinging to their hate, their veins running hot with the memories my masters have left for them. It is said that death haunts the darkness, and that it knows our names.
 
It knows theirs, too.
 
We are destined to be forgotten, to become the lingering silence between half-remembered words, the flickering shadows cast from the dying embers of a dead age, the black flame that shall one day illuminate their final hours. Our graves will be the nameless battlefields of unknown worlds, the trackless depths of the void, and the boiling madness of what lies beyond this broken galaxy.
 
The great sin of my masters was to remind mankind of what it was, rather than what it wished to be. For mankind had come to think of itself as a god in a godless age, and crowned itself with golden lies, even as it sent my masters to slaughter and destroy in the name of peace and progress, even as it then condemned them for it. Who betrayed whom? What guilt when such sins were wrought into the very fabric of their being? My masters corrected such folly and brought low Terra’s hubris, stone by broken stone, lie by broken lie. They slaughtered, and they destroyed. They obeyed, and then they obeyed no more. They brought ruin, not only to His worlds and armies, to His systems and fleets, but to the very dream that still enslaves His children as it had once enslaved all of us. We have poisoned them with their own ideals, we have corrupted them with their own truths.
 
And for that their brothers have set upon us with the fury of the betrayed, of those who lived long enough to find that the dreams of the past will become the nightmares of the future. They will endure now, as we have endured, but there shall be no progress, no golden age, no Imperium as they sought to shape and enforce it. Like worms they shall return to the rotting birth-soil of their unholy Terra, groveling in the dark, clutching at a worthless corpse-god to save them from the cancerous fear that already gnaws at the tomb-world they have built for Him.
 
Across the centuries that I have served this Legion, I have seen the hallowed dead abandoned to rot on meaningless worlds beneath meaningless suns, and the glittering beauty of worlds in their death-throes. I have seen the gleaming warships, wrought with ancient and irreplaceable artifice, gutted by the cruel hate of our dagger-hulled monstrosities, bleeding their sacred dead into the cold grave of the void. 
 
My masters have made burnt offerings of the very worlds that they had once made sacred with their own sacrifice, bringing death to entire worlds and systems and fleets, exterminating once-kindred souls with the same indifference – nay, with the same malice, with which we once exterminated the verminous xenos of this infested galaxy. My masters despise their gene-father, but they are his sons nonetheless. They hate him, and even more the One who returned him to them. And, truth be told, I would dare say they hate most of all their very Legion. They sought a different fate, but not even their blood could cleanse them of who they were: the lords of the night, sons of Terra, Eighth Legion.
 
They shall die in the coming years, hunted and scourged by those they have illuminated from the darkness. My own death awaits even sooner. My ashes will be left to scatter upon the indifferent winds of a ravaged world, or to be cast upon the endless black of the void. I have served my masters through crusade and heresy, through loyalty and betrayal, through endless war and ceaseless death. Thanks to them, I have lived for over two centuries, yet in the end I remained like any other mortal, a weak flame that flickered only briefly in the eternal darkness.
 
I am no ascended, no demi-mortal, yet I find myself sharing the beliefs of my masters: that our fates cannot be broken, no matter our vanities; that if justice exists in this galaxy, it is arbitrary and without mercy; and that, whatever we may owe our creators, we shall have repaid them our final debts when our last blade falls broken upon a broken world, gleaming in the twilight of His lies, clad in the polished midnight of our truths.
 
Old Night returns, drawn forth from its restless slumber by the coppery scent of mankind’s fears. Our enemies fight its embrace, praying bitterly amidst guttering candles for a decaying sun to once more rise and return them to the light. Yet it is the fate of all things to end in darkness and despair, to drown in the very depths from which we each arose, weak and nameless, to die alone and forgotten.
 
As Old Night returns and drinks deeply of this coming age, know then that it was I, Aratus bas Szelekh, last remembrancer of the 36th Company of the Eighth Legion of the Imperium of Man, born of Terra, slave of Nostramo, son of Melanchthon, sworn in fealty to both Legion and Warmaster, servant of the Vor Zekhon, who bound these words to ink and parchment in the dead runes of a dying tongue, who forged bitter memory into the dulled blade of history, and who prepared these works that shall now serve as the silent tomb of my masters’ words and deeds.
 
And if, in some distant age, these works are uncovered, and the cursed ink of their making still glimmers in the dim glow of unknown stars – to such eyes that may one day gaze upon these pages from across the black gulf of millennia that shall stand between us, I ask of you only:
 
Remember us.
 
-Aratus bas Szelekh,
Remembrancer, VIII Legion
 
+ + "Judgment comes for us all in the end." + + 
 
First Units

 
+ + + + + + + +
 
If you've gotten this far, thank you for taking the time to read the above lore for my new 30k army. I've always had a like for the general look of the Night Lords since the days of Codex Chaos during 40k Second Edition, so I've decided to build both forces for them in both 30k and 40k, along with a few allied elements.
 
As such, I'm getting ready to start with the 30k army with the following:
  • 2x Legion Tactical Squads
  • 1x Cataphracti Terminator Squad w/ power axes
I figure two tactical squads are a good foundation for any 30k army, and I’ll likely expand them to 15 or 20 Marines each later on. The choice in Terminators and weapon layout - Cataphracti w/ power axes - is mostly just personal preference. I’m not much of a competitive gamer, so I’m focusing on modeling what I like more than anything.
 
Lore-wise, my 30k Night Lords are intended to represent a force of several company remnants that were left behind to garrison a sector that was brought into compliance early in the Great Crusade. They’re all Terran-born, and were effectively separated from the main elements of the Legion relatively early on in the Great Crusade. I'm hoping to balance the basic core of the established Night Lords character with some of my personal preferences (e.g. I generally find the gore and trophies a little too cartoonish for my tastes in a lot of the Black Library fiction).
 
My 40k army will be the 41st millennium’s survivors of my 30k force. I’ve already planned to include an allied Militia force for my 30k army, and possibly a Knights force (given I’ve already bought a Chaos Knight for my 40k one, lol). I’m also hoping to include a Battlefleet Gothic fleet and a legio for Adeptus Titanicus at some point - possibly Legio Ulricon if ForgeWorld release more information on them, otherwise maybe the Tiger Eyes (my favorite Legio in terms of looks, lore, and rules) or a home-brew one.
 
Anyways, thanks for looking, and I hope to start having actual progress pics (and more lore) up soon.
  • Llagos_Tyrant, Loquille, Tallarn Commander and 1 other like this

#2
Zuvassin

Zuvassin

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Date: 9418088.m30

Location: Segmentum Obscurus 

Source: VIII Legion Strike-Cruiser Revenimus

Authorized: Lord-Commander Jhariuk Zuvassin, Master of the 36th Company, Regent of Melanchthon

 

+ + Thought for the Day: “To break the law is death.” + +

 

I heard it said once, on the lips of a man condemned by my masters, that there is no honesty like the honesty of a desert. He meant, I believe, that deserts do not seduce you with the promise of an easy life, that it is, in fact, life stripped bare to its most fundamental and brutal demands.

 

To survive in a barren wasteland, in other words, one must learn to endure. To hunt. To live without respite or apology.

 

"Such idealized nonsense," responded my lord. The mortal who had spoken those words had come from a desert tribe, only to rise to the position of city-governor in the days before my masters illuminated their world with the terms of Compliance. The man had been cowed by the growing Imperium, but as is the irony with many mortals, our short lives seem to only push us further to cling to the olden days. It had been on that very day of ascension, when his worthless backwater of a planet had been officially admitted into the Imperium of Man, that the mortal spoke those very words to my masters. 

 

At the time, I had thought it merely the poor attempt of an illiterate savage to appear cultured and sophisticated to his new masters. To appear worthy of his appointment as deputy to the new planetary-governor, an officer who had been hand-picked by my lord from amongst one of the Imperial Army regiments that had served alongside us. But within a decade, it would be proven that his words had been less poor philosophy, and more a prophecy. How the planetary-governor died I do not recall, if we ever knew to begin with, but we knew his killer.

 

The man drifted from the light of his illumination, until he swam in such ignorance that my masters returned, bringing a very different sort of illumination. Their food and promethium were destroyed. Citizens vanished. And then one day, the light of their world's bright sun disappeared, swallowed by the black smoke of the funeral pyres that had once been hab-blocks. 

 

My masters burned his city, and when he and his people fled back to their homelands, they burned his desert as well.

 

Such is the honesty of deserts.

 

-Aratus bas Szelekh,

Remembrancer, VIII Legion

 

bases

 

+ + + + + + + +

 

Just another quick and basic update. Since I tend to hate doing basing, I figured I'd try and knock it out real quick before working on the minis themselves. As I tend to either get bogged down on increasingly unsatisfactory complicated bases, or waste time being super nit-picky with resin bases, I decided to just create a basic scheme and stick to it.

 

In this case, it's extremely simple: basic sand (GW) with some rocks (GF9) and skulls (GW). Primed/base-coated with Zandri Dust spray (GW), washed with Agrax Earthshade (GW), and dry-brushed with Tyrant Skull (GW). The rims are Battlefield Earth (P3), and once the minis themselves are done and attached, I'll go back and add some static tufts from GW as well.

 

I feel the basic brown tones make for a nice contrast with the blues and metals that my Night Lords will be painted in, and there's just enough detail so that it's not completely boring, even if it's not the most evocative or complex.

 

All I have left to do are the rims for about half of my initial 25 bases, so I'm hoping to knock those out tomorrow and then move on to building my Tactical squads and Terminator squad.

 

 

 

 

 

 


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#3
Llagos_Tyrant

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I love the lore you're writing up, and this looks like a great start to an army! Will be following.


gallery_48988_15808_1006.pnggallery_48988_15808_13455.pngsml_gallery_48988_15094_13750.pngsml_gallery_48988_15094_4327.png

Iron Warriors//VIIth Grand Battalion: Liber Index

Hobby on Instagram at @GrimDarkHobby


#4
BadgersinHills

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Nice to see an army with lots of great fluff. Looking forward to how this turns out! :) 


Maybe you could model TWC-sized "were-templars" who's inner Templar took over in the fury of battle transforming them into a giant half man - half templar?

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My Works in Progress

Profile picture by Julie Hang as part of Mermay. 


#5
Zuvassin

Zuvassin

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Date: 9228007.m31

Location: Segmentum Obscurus 

Source: VIII Legion Cruiser De Noctum

Authorized: Lord-Commander Jhariuk Zuvassin, Master of the 36th Company, Regent of Melanchthon

 

+ + Thought for the Day: “We are the consequence of your actions.” + +

 

Like almost all of my masters, Krychek was born of Terra, a child of the pits, a boy marked by the sins of his parents. Born with nothing, born from nothing, the first sons of the Eighth Legion arose during the last days of Unification and the first days of the Great Crusade. They were Astartes, warriors who had left behind the fate of rattling chains shimmering in the darkness, who had ascended into the living weapons of a golden Imperium. They had escaped their fates, and for that one would have thought them eternally grateful, that if any Legion could champion the hope of the Imperial Truth, it would have been them.

 

And yet, why the Emperor ever glorified such wretched creatures became, I believe, a question that would torment Krychek and many of his kind, a question of fate and purpose that would gnaw at them, that would haunt them, as the first signs of their gene-father's madness began to corrupt their already brutal and inhuman tendencies.

 

Unlike his Nostramo-born brothers who would come to dominate the Legion, Krychek cared little for titles or favor, for reward or promotion. In combat, he was merciless and capable, but not known for his blade-craft. His was the victory of the cunning, the skill of a survivor who cared little for the glory of honor or courage, a warrior of unspeakable and unstoppable cruelty when it suited him. He was not a sadist, not like the Nostramo-born, not like his Primarch, but he was cruel and without mercy, a willing blade in the willing hands of his masters. An opportunist on the battlefield, Krychek was a loyal warrior of the 36th Company, and would become, by the end, a trusted voice amongst his fellow sergeants as well as the senior officers of the Company.

 

He would also become the first member of the 36th to be inducted into the Vor Zekhon, the warrior-lodge otherwise known as the Black Hand of Melanchthon. What compelled him to join such a fraternity, I cannot say nor guess, for outwardly Krychek was a loner, his humors melancholic, his silences as assertive as the war-cries of the Fifth or Sixth Legions. In counsel, his votes were tallied by the dour glare of his judgment or the unsettling grin of his agreement. In battle, his men were trained to fight, like him, almost entirely in silence, without need for their sergeant's guidance no matter the situation.

 

And while many of my masters honed the craft of fear through words - through whispered threats and taunting promises - Krychek and his men wrought fear through the very absence of language, their silence a pressing doom. He cared not for the vanity of stealth, for he was no son of Corax or Alpharius, but he was willing to use ambush and surprise to bring terror to his enemies, to let them know the hour of their deaths approached from unknown corners. He pursued war not as a soldier, but as an executioner, his men the silent blades that glisten in the rich veins of the condemned.

 

Such was the infamy of his nature that Krychek was known amongst my masters as the Unspoken, and his khadre, the Seventh Tactical Squad of the 36th Company, as the Unspeaking.

 

Night Lords Tactical Squad Sergeant Krychek

 

+ + + + + + + +

 

First model of my 30k Night Lords force has been assembled. For now, as with my bases, I'm focused on getting models done more than my typically nit-picky overthinking on making the "perfect" models in terms of poses and whatnot. Modeling-wise, I'm wanting a relatively "clean" and "standard" legion look for my Night Lords, so I probably won't have much in the way of kill trophies or flayed skins or the like.

 

Hoping to get a decent chunk of my initial force - two Tactical squads and a Terminator squad - done between now and the weekend.


Edited by Zuvassin, 09 April 2020 - 06:57 PM.

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#6
Zuvassin

Zuvassin

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I love the lore you're writing up, and this looks like a great start to an army! Will be following.

Thank you for the compliment! I'm hoping to have smaller bits and pieces for most updates, with maybe some longer pieces here and there in-between.

 

Nice to see an army with lots of great fluff. Looking forward to how this turns out! smile.png

Thanks! I'm excited to start painting this army.







Also tagged with one or more of these keywords: Night Lords Legion, Horus Heresy, Traitor Legions

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