TEMPER THY WRATH
The Omega Hounds Space Marines Chapter
“Build me a son, Belisarius, who will be strong enough to exorcise temptation, and brave enough to know no fear; one who will be ceaseless and unending in bloodshed, and loyal and subservient unto death.”
“Fear is power, Konrad. Apply it where Roboute has failed.”
Records indicate the Night Lords’ strike force was comprised of mainly Nostraman legionaries; legionaries who would later become infamous for their pre-Astartes sins. Before they could achieve a second Compliance though, the strike force was redeployed to reinforce the Isstvan System. The following Horus Heresy had engulfed the galaxy. Adlan IX would be forgotten in the fires of civil war, recast into a second darkness that would last millennia, the passage of time churning violent tides of superstition and fear not seen since the Age of Strife.
The Emperor’s light, however, would find its way back to the planet. As the galaxy was torn asunder at the end of the 41st millennium and the Great Rift threatened to extinguish the Imperium forever, the 27th Battlegroup of the Indomitus Crusade’s Primus Fleet reached the Exilis Ostium. The forces of the Imperium instantly became a bulwark against demon, xenos, and traitor alike, liberating planet after planet. As the forces of the Battlegroup spread throughout the sub-sector, unsettling reports began to surface of Rogue Trader Lord Khodessa’s 4th War Flotilla making contact with what had once been Adlan IX.
Lord Khodessa had discovered Adlan IX’s entire native populace had long since fractured into violent feral tribes that would engage in warfare and culling concurring with the apex of its lunar cycle. Imperial Scholars would later attribute this phenomena to the probability of the VIII Legion’s invasion coinciding with a ‘full moon’. The Night Lords’ way of murder appeared to have ingrained irrevocable psychosis upon the tribes, slowly birthing an association to the lunar event with slaughter and wanton violence. The Rogue Trader, staunch capitalist as he was, saw the harsh planet’s potential as prime recruitment grounds for the Astra Militarum or otherwise. According to remarks in the sixth volume of his autobiography, Candid Encounters: A Journey Beyond Darkness the self-appointed historian claimed “Adlan IX is not an emerald of the Imperium for its prestigious carbon resources, but rather a ruby for the blood it will spill in the name of the Emperor.”
Unfortunately, Lord Khodessa’s vision of the planet submitting any recruitment tithes for the Imperium failed to materialize. Fleet data imply the 4th War Flotilla lost all contact with its Battlegroup shortly after entering the Adlan System. The now resurrected Roboute Guilliman, forever the empire-builder, never failed to recall a planet he had been tasked to bring into compliance. Once word from the 27th Battlegroup had reached, him he immediately ordered an Adeptus Astartes chapter under the Ultima Founding take Adlan IX as its home world to ensure the continued stability of the sub-sector.
They would become known as the Omega Hounds.
“The future of Adlan’s forests are predicated on the same principle that will define ours. Balance. For while the flames of the inferno are necessary for growth, they must also submit to exhaustion lest this world burn entirely.”
—Death Speaker Khortoch
While it was immediately clear that the Omega Hounds contained raw savagery beyond Cawl’s psycho-indoctrination, the Chapter still required tutelage of a more seasoned brand of brutality. Having earned many honours during the completion of its one hundred year pennant crusade in the Orpheus Sector, and for its generally strict adherence to the tenets of the previous Codex Astartes, the Executioners Chapter was selected to send a cadre of veterans to sire the young Hounds. Chief among the Executioner cadre was Death Speaker Khortoch, a Chaplain of particularly grim renown. He quickly garnered the Hounds’ respect for his intolerance of defeated enemies being given any clemency. Although Khortoch appreciated the Chapter’s eagerness for bloodshed, he sought to cautiously harness their ingrained ruthlessness, rather than let it run rampant.
Looking to induct the next generation of aspirants, the Omega Hounds turned to Adlan IX’s verdant forests. As the Chapter’s Apothecarion listened to the violent screams cutting through the moonlit night, fate would seemingly grant Rogue Trader Lord Khodessa’s wish of Adlanian recruitment finally fulfilled. Mostly ignored during the initial construction stages of the Omega Hounds’ fortress monastery, Noster Castrum, the tribes of Adlan IX were now looked upon to tribute their youth to the service of the Imperium. The Hounds considered the instability of the warring tribes and prepared for heavy tithe submission resistance. An envoy led by Khortoch discovered just the opposite.
At the sight of the pale artisan-crafted features of his death mask, the Adlanian tribe threw their eyes to the ground and promptly offered every last male youth to the envoy. Khortoch remained displeased— and not at the willingness of the tribe to surrender their offspring. The Death Speaker had been thoroughly briefed on Adlan IX’s pre-heresy history. The traitorous VIII Legion, infamous for their skull helms akin to his own, appeared to have found a recruitment source from their ancient, psychotic pacification of the Adlanians. With conclusions drawn and vows sworn, a fierce hatred was born that night toward the remnant bands of the Night Lords.
With the Imperium now beginning to hold the Exilis Ostium against the violent tide of the Great Rift, the newly established Officio Logisticarum attempted to seize the brief reprieve in unending conflict. Originally, Adlan IX had been scheduled for Hub-Fortress designation, however, the sheer breadth of the Cicatrix Maledictum shrunk the grand plans of Guilliman’s Hand down to simply restructuring Admostos into an orbital defence platform as the Indomitus Crusade heaved forward. The first fortification phase would be the subterranean reinforcement of the tiny moon’s fractured crust. Miners, labourers, and slaves of the Exilis Ostium were hurriedly press-ganged in the millions to help the Adeptus Mechanicus expedite the undertaking. Capitalizing on the haste of the construction, however, agents of the VIII Legion would ultimately poison the fruits of this titanic labor.
Coinciding with the launch of several crippling strikes against the Omega Hounds, the Night Lords signalled their saboteurs. Detonations below the surface of Admostos began to rip apart the moon’s mantle, its exposed hot core lighting up the night sky on Adlan IX. While the traitors had instantly stripped an Adeptus Astartes Homeworld of all utility of its satellite, the lasting consequence of the sabotage would be far more dire.
Possessed by ferocity and hate unfathomable, the Hounds’ fleet chased the renegades into a rift in the warp. First upon entry, the Chapter’s lead strike cruiser’s Gellar Field suddenly collapsed. Experts among these space-time anomalies, the traitors had successfully goaded the Hounds. The fragments of the final vox transmission Noster Castrum would receive featured Khortoch’s final breath ordering the rest of the fleet to retreat followed by haunting vox static containing the following transcription; “False sons of a false god, you claim no right to the Sons of Nostramo. We sentence you to madness eternal. Ave Dominus Nox.”
Overly zealous with a taste for complete destruction, the Chapter was nearly bled dry by the battles that would follow to stabilize the sub-sector. So fervent was this heightened slaughter lust that Invicta Warsuit pilots volunteered entombment into Redemptor Dreadnoughts so they could administer the Emperor’s wrath on a greater scale. The frontal assaults featured utterly primal bloodshed, these new Hounds paying little care for self preservation. The Chapter, it seemed, was destined to succumb to the destiny the Night Lords had vowed.
The remaining veterans of the Chapter stubbornly refused such a fate— Roboute Guilliman, their Master of War, had tasked them with not only holding Adlan IX true to the glory of the Imperium, but also conquest of its sub-sector and the stars beyond. They believed in order to fully persecute the enemies of Humanity, the Omega Hounds would need to ground their insatiable and bellicose desire to butcher the enemy, lest they become that which they fight. To that end, no Hound would take the mantle of Chapter Master henceforth. In the position’s stead, the Reclusiam was reformed into the Council of Khortoch. In honour of Khortoch’s original vision, the Hounds would attempt to temper their wrath.
The Hounds patiently remain ready in their defence of the Exilis Ostium sub-sector, yet eagerly await Lord Guilliman’s order to take to the stars in glorious slaughter of all the horrors which thirst to see Humanity extinguished from them.
+++ Accessing Noosphere
++++ ID Accepted
+++++ Load Complete:
++++++ Heraldic Summation:
The Omega Hounds’ primary iconography features a snarling beast reminiscent of the Canis species of ancient Terra under a letter from a similarly primitive alphabet believed to, when combined, represent the Chapter’s nomenclature. Imperial archivists suggest the imagery of the red hound under the black omega symbolizes the Chapter’s internal ferocity corralled by the black office of their Chaplaincy. Thus, the veterans of the Hounds are granted a white omega, their experience beginning to lord over their bloodlust more so than the Chaplaincy. As veterans obtain the rank of Lieutenant, the flames of ferocity have become smouldering black coals of hate. Upon elevation to Captaincy, and their subsequent induction into the priesthood of the chaplains, black has now overtaken their insignia, believed to represent their mastery of rage— the death-face of their helms granted the crimson they sow in the name of the Emperor.
“Though truth revealed itself beyond our night, it is in fact illusion which gave us might.”
—Anon., popular proverb among Adlanian Omega Hounds
While the Indomitus Crusade was ignited to reinforce the light of the lost candles of Humanity amidst the darkening void, some warn Adlan IX should have been left to have its wick and wax exhausted. The deranged native populace of the planet remains, intendedly, oblivious to their perilous existence. The Omega Hounds keep their charge of humanity in a continual state of ignorance, bound to the unending madness that haunt it with every false perception of Admostos’ exposed core as a full moon. The ancient tenant, Endurance of the Strongest prevails on Adlan IX, ensuring the Chapter’s recruitment tithes are of hardy, albeit psychotic, stock. Still, the Council of Khortoch keeps rigorous screening protocols in place to prevent heathen Adlanians beyond redemption from admission into their ranks.
Even so, the traitors have had a nominal degree of influence. Most male Adlanian children dream of being absconded to the stars by their Death Chieftains, joining the Tribes of Night for slaughter eternal. The Council of Khortoch begrudgingly accepts this established culture and the grim parallels it suggests between the Omega Hounds and the Night Lords.
Critics have often associated the Omega Hounds’ bouts of rage with the psychotic tendencies of the Adlanians, and scoff at stubbornness of the Chapter’s refusal to recruit off-world. The Hounds dismiss such pondering as that of spoiled cretins. The Chapter lacks the luxury of choice and survives with what reality offers: clean Adlanian genetic stock in the face of a sub-sector that has proved to be unclean with traitors.
“What does it ultimately matter? Do you hold your combi-tool to such scrutiny? What fires and from which Forge tempered it? What archive and from whose genius created it? Do not abandon your logic, Adept.”
Some speculation firmly suggests they are of VII Legion stock, noting their stern and often bullheaded disposition matching that of the Dorn descendants of the Executioner cadre which initially trained the Omega Hounds’ Awoken. Outlandish and heretical theories whisper a particularly savage progenitor, drawing superficial parallels to the XII Legion’s penchant for bellicose brutality. Their infamy of incensed slaughter also garners theories linking the Chapter to the VI and IX Legions, though such musings remain in serious doubt due to the Chapter’s gene-seed free from both the genetic manifestations of the Space Wolves as well as the rumoured flaws which are said to afflict the Blood Angels.
What remains without question is the purity of the Omega Hounds’ geneseed. Still, their often-cited crazed manner of war has put their geneseed tithes under extreme scrutiny. To the Priests of Mars however, logic rules over frantic hearsay, and tithe examination after tithe examination has resulted in satisfactory conclusions. The ensuing frustration of the Adeptus Mechanicus over the continuing rampant rumination and following queries regarding the Omega Hounds, some scholars say, is what has vexed them into spiteful silence regarding the Chapter— ironically fuelling further speculation.
+++++++dataselected: omegahounds 5th surge: zitann breach:
+++++++A: stylized helm common among adlan ix intake stock
+++++++C: modified mk x warplate
+++++++D: ‘scions of the executioners’ honour-won vambrace
“I saw him once. The Warmaster. Clad not in ebony, but rather the hues of a malevolent ocean. Instead of any claw or mace, he brandished a sword aflame with the power of gods. The stars would be showered in blood once more. The Indomitus Crusade had begun.”
—Excerpt from Chaplain Orthus’ 3rd sermon of Primarch Roboute Guilliman
The Council of Khortoch has woven much of Guilliman’s most recent exploits into their catechisms, eschewing all but the scantest of details of his history prior to the founding of the Omega Hounds. The dissemination of this knowledge unto the chapter has left many Hounds with a disturbingly narrow view of the Primarch. Nonetheless, the Captains and Death Hounds utilize many doctrines of his Codex Astartes as methods of grounding those with insatiable bloodlust. In fact, the memorization of entire tactical treatises are oftentimes used as forms of penance in minor offences of conduct.
Despite the ruling Chaplaincy and their teachings, a healthy minority of the Astartes assigned to the ranks of the Assault Intercessors tend to hold significant resentment to any form of tether to their perceived limitless bloodshed. Indeed, they believe their massacres birth rite rather than blemish. The most vocal of these dissenters quickly find their fate in the hands of the Chapter’s Judicars— a grim reminder that these tempting beliefs must be thwarted at all costs.
Though the reverence of Roboute Guilliman may appear absolute, the Hounds lack a defined chapter cult, instead fully worshipping the God-Emperor. This degree of piety is not without precedent. The systemic integration and expansion of the Omega Hounds’ Chaplaincy has required the Chapter to maintain strong relations with the Ecclesiarchy. The Council of Khortoch sacrificed a considerable portion of Astartes autonomy in exchange for their Cardinals legitimizing their numerous Chaplains with blessed Rosarii. Several accusations from other branches of Imperial military might have labelled the Omega Hounds as nothing more than unsanctioned attack dogs of the Holy Synod. It is not uncommon to see entire companies of Hounds seconded to holy crusades in the Exilis Ostium sub-sector.
“The Council of Khortoch? Simply a leash, a muzzle. Loyal are the Hounds of Adlan for they call Lord Guilliman master. It is this undying obedience that stays my hand.”
—Inquisitor von Flaskk, Ordo Astartes
Omega Hounds in the Batteline Reserves displaying innately elevated levels of rage are earmarked for assignment to the ranks of the Assualt Intercessors. There, they are largely free to indulge their instinctual massacres, the worst of these Hounds receiving the Emperor’s Mercy through Absolver-fired bolts amidst the battlefield, or, in more formal settings, via the Judicar’s executioner blade in the hallowed halls of Noster Castrum amongst their gathered brethren. In fact, the Chapter deploys significantly more Judicars alongside these units than other chapters. While to outside observers, the addition of these warrior-priest executioners would seem typical for the Omega Hounds, it is actually due to Inquisitorial Mandate of Inquisitor von Flaskk of the Ordo Astartes.
Their most prominent deviation from the Codex Astartes, however, exists in the Omega Hounds’ leadership structure. The Council of Khortoch and the inclusion of Captains in the Chaplaincy results in far more Chaplains and Judicars shepherding their Astartes than other chapters. This deviance is something not taken lightly by the Hounds, and certainly appears to be viewed as a necessary device to reign in their perceived flaws rather than any tradition they are proud of.
Because the Chapter recruits from a population whose male genome is completely free of the psychic mutation, the Omega Hounds maintain a Librarium whose function is slowly eroding. Without any replenish, attrition of war has caused the original psychically-gifted Awoken to dwindle drastically in number since the Hounds’ founding. Those that have survived face scrutiny and judgement from the growing percentage of Primaris Astartes who draw their heritage from Adlan IX. These Adlanians cling to the superstitions of their tribes, holding the view that the sacred powers of the Ma’tradah, the Witches of Adlan, cannot be wielded by the mettle of men. The remaining Librarians solemnly choose an extinction the Chapter’s future will undoubtedly bring over any potential schism their striving to survive could cause, and have integrated the Ma’tradah into the Librarium to ensure the Omega Hounds’ repository of wisdom and history will survive beyond them.
“Adlan raised us. Cawl ascended us. But Khortoch liberated us.”
—Intercessor Sergeant Brother Atlas
Special attention is given to sections of the Codex Astartes that deal with tactics related to the complete subjugation of the enemy. Cruelty and hate are taught to be constant thunder reigning over the conquered; their total execution stayed until deemed necessary. Eliminator Operators have been known to silently recite these tenants as they remain prone; disciplined for weeks on end in their vigils over newly established Imperial Governments.
The Right of Axe, while marginalized from its former prominence, remains potent among the First Company. Those of compliant tempers and great prowess within the Assault Intercessors endure long enough to be tutored in the Right of Axe by the veterans of the Hounds. Blade Guard Veterans of the Chapter are renowned for their disciplined ferocity, the lethality of the Executioners’ on full display, released through gore spatters as they steadily strike a careful balance between finesse and fury. This rank has sired several Captains over the centuries as the Chaplaincy bear witness to these Astartes showcasing mastery of their temptations of slaughter in their gruesome deployments.
Intercessor Veterans also represent a strong portion of the First Company— many Hounds view the mastery of the bolt rifle as the pinnacle of Astartes warfare as well as a clear sign that they have conquered their inherent savagery. Bolter drills are never abandoned as the Hounds rise through rank. This perfection of skill is reflected no matter the theatre of war: in the open battlefields upon Xenos worlds to the claustrophobic quarters of haunted hulks, the bolts of the Omega Hounds chasing down their foes, viciously ripping them apart across the stars.
“Attack! For his Hand of Dominion beckons!”
I appreciate your time and hope you enjoyed this article. Any feedback/criticism is equally appreciated. Many thanks to octavulg, and his Octaguide. If you’re creating an IA article, give it a look!
Edited by KBA, 27 March 2021 - 05:51 AM.