This is so I don't have to transmit the file ending to everybody at seperate times. The colours of your characters might be lost in transit, so if that's the case I'll do my best to make sure it's all clear. Well done, and thanks for spending all this time together. We've all had a great experience of a campaign, and I think the ending reflects the choices you made, as well as keeping in character with the grimdark nature of our source material.
Thanks again, and enjoy:
++Sealed records of Imperial Border Space Section 31-b Alpha: 895 M41:
Record of deeds following actions of Inquisitors Orentes Nishmar, Kayzerie Malachite and other relevant persons.++
++Thought for the day: Blessed is the mind too small for doubt++
When Nishmar and her cohorts arrived at the planet of Ankah, they were initially dismayed to discover they had arrived a century too late. The billions of loyal Imperial citizens, Planetary Defence Forces, Mechanicus, Arbites and other facilities denied to them after a hundred years of zombie apocalypse, and tyrannical heretic’s rule, replaced by harsh-tongued private security, Petty Vengeance Servitors, and squabbling nobles.
However, as all good members of the Inquisition should be, they remained resolute to continue in their mission, capturing Slake, as had been their goal.
The World of Ankah would speak for centuries about the group of Imperial man and women that helped free their world with the power of music. Back upon Terra, it is said that the songs they made that day, caused the Emperor’s desiccated head to incline forward in a single nod of approval. Whilst the Custodes will not confirm this rumour, they do not deny it either.
[Inquisitor Ordo Xenos Calixis Orentes Nishmar]
Nishmar brought the unconscious body of Slake to her fellows in the Inquisition, where many secrets could potentially be extracted to help continue the fight against Chaos, and the pursuit of Lexuta. She was then made to stay behind, to help restore order to the anarchy that Hive Slake had become.
Though she was interviewed at length about the daemonic manifestation, few believed the story that her cohorts had banded together and overturned the world and faced down a daemon with the power of music. But those upon Ankah did, and for them to believe was all that mattered.
[Inquisitor Ordo Mallues Calixis Kayzeri Malachite]
With Ankah’s heretical leadership destroyed in the riots that followed, and the cleansing firestorms that Malachite perpetrated, she knew it was not the end, but the beginning of a longer fight. But the measures she took, while brutal and indiscriminate, purged many of the more prominent heretics that day. Though the groups of Chaos resistance would be widespread, their most prominent leaders were all but gone. She would later tear parts of the Hive to pieces in her urge to continue the fight, until the Inquisition at last saw fit to send her out on further assignments.
Though she was never told that Sholto had survived his ordeal of possession, she would later grow furious to learn that her superiors had allowed a daemonhost to survive. And thus, she would begin a hunt that would see the more Radical elements of the Calixian Inquisition wiped from the galaxy, whether they saw her Puritan ideals or not.
[Former Heretical Planetary Governor Slake]
Denied his sorcerous powers in the final summoning, and trapped within the hexagrammic torture chambers of the Emperor’s Emperor of The Emperor, Slake would live out the rest of his days in all manners of agony. Be it trapped within a sensory deprivation chamber, methodone, or other controlled methods of oblivion, the lack of sensation was a greater hell than the most finely-tuned auto-racks. He would finally spill secrets that would later become influential in the fight against Lexuta.
But he would have the last laugh for now. With the outlawing of spoken and written Gothic, the citizens of Slake had become used to knowing the tongue and word of the Archenemy. When the Imperial Guard came in their full numbers to aid in the pacification and restoration of compliance, they were greeted by flocks of grateful citizens, eager to welcome the Imperium of Man. However, all the Guard saw were mobs of men and women, bearing banners, shouting in barbaric tongues, waving what appeared to be blasphemous placards, advancing in swarms towards them. By the time anybody knew the difference, hundreds of thousands of civilians were dead, their confused screams mingling with the clicking of the Geiger counters that can still be heard today throughout the lower levels, their flurried clicks a warning to the death scream of the Titan, Tyranny Prime, that Slake had corrupted to his cause.
[Moritat Assassin Sholto Varden Liam]
Sholto had survived much. The devastation of Ankah, the destruction of the Ghost Ship, and even deposing Slake. But his undoing would be amongst his own. Though his intentions had likely been the best, it is not the road to heaven that such a way is paved. The knowledge that he had willingly let a thing of the Warp share his mind and body earned him the revulsion of his former allies. Though his mind had been wiped of the knowledge of his deeds, Nishmar could never bring herself to look him the eye again. With the tension growing between the assassin and his former allies, he was given a new order: To go out into the reaches of space with the Imperial fleet, and find Lexuta. To hunt him down, or die trying. It would pain him that he did not truly know the reason why, after all he had done, that he was being sent away, but he trusted in the unquestionable will of the Inquisition, for he had no other choice.
So he set off on his quest for vengeance against the man that had turned his father, knowing that it was very unlikely that he would ever see Nishmar, or her companions, ever again.
[Resistance Member Geoffrey]
When the Inquisition set up a new government within Hive Slake, now named Hive Glory, Geoffrey was chosen to be among its new parliament. With less centralised power, total, tyrannical domination could never again be brought to Ankah, nor could one man in power falling to Chaos mean the doom of a world. Following the example of his Landerson friend, Cromwell, Geoffrey was a compassionate man, who did his level best to help the people. Though the years would later weigh upon him, with the harsh punishments others would mete out to the ignorant who had clung, starving, to the only crops they had known, the xenos breeds Slake had brought with him, he was determined not to let it show. He did his level best to help restore Ankah to its former glory. With the clouds of bone ash that carpeted the world, he used the abundant resource to help grow other crops more acceptable to the Imperium.
It would take decades, maybe centuries, before the wounds upon Ankah would heal, but Geoffrey could never be accused of doing nothing to help those first healing scars form.
[Templars of Steel Magos Silvanus, "Widget"]
Widget had always been unusual, even to his fellow Mechanicus. Overly fond of his flesh, and eager to pursue new ideas, his slipping into so-called Tech Heresy became ever more abundant as the time went on. It seemed as though he almost dared his allies to call him out, to bring their prejudices to the fore, to justify to them the greatness of his deeds. For all that., he had never wavered in his duty, and would have nothing to do with Chaos, denying it at every turn. However, when he trusted his Biologis compatriots upon Ankah, he did not know it would be the gravest mistake of his life. During his implant surgeries to become a fully-fledged Magos, he was infected by the Arch-Biologis, Kie Tyrannos, with the Obliterator Virus. His thoughts and deeds became consumed by trying to halt it at every turn. And whilst he succeeded in hiding it from the suspicious eyes of his comrades, he could not hide it from the watchful eyes of the Mechanicus inspector that came to test him that day, aboard the Emperor’s Emperor of The Emperor. In the fighting that ensued, the hull was breached, sending panicked alarms coursing through the ship, shorting power on many levels. When order was restored, scanners picked up a power-armoured corpse, floating out into the void. An ironic end, to die as he had felt in life: To be screaming his voice into the endless ether, the one source of shining reason in a dark and endless void, with none wiling, or able, to hear him.
[Former Sergeant of the Ascalon PDF, Narzoz]
Narzoz was a man of unflinching loyalty, courage and resilience. Time and time again, his body, mind and soul were beaten, twisted, cut, slashed, burned and scarred a thousand times, until the giant, hulking beast of a man resembled nothing of his former self. This may have been for the best, however, for though his mind and body had been ravaged, they had grown calloused, resistant to injury. It was this resistance that let Narzoz stand in the fight against Slake and his minions, fighting even when all around him were sure he would die.
But when he was interrogated, it was discovered that the eating of human flesh had unlocked talents within him. He was handed over to the Black Ships, with little resistance from Nishmar. His mind and body were scarred a second time, though these wounds were ones that would not be grown over with new scar tissue, nor be cut or burned from him. His sanctioning brand would forever twinge upon the back of his hand, beneath his glove, reminding him of the consequences of flirting so dangerously with the gifts the Warp can bring. His comrade Nayl, too, would forever be by his side. A spectral reminder of well-meaning deeds gone awry.
When he returned, he would be bearing a new weight that none but he could understand. But should his broad shoulders find it enough for him to carry, Nishmar would gladly allow him to carry on in her service, for there was always another enemy to fight, in the Emperor’s name.
For Khalius, it seemed as though the phrase “A moment of laxity spawns a lifetime of heresy” had been made for him. His fate was sealed the moment he took his eyes away from the Obliterator-infected *****, her tainted guts splattered across his unwary form. Despite this, Khalius thought himself fast enough to escape the on-set of Chaos, and its most deadly biological weapon. But though he ducked and dived and dodged fast enough to dodge any mortal’s hand, not even he could escape his own skin. So he dealt with the very fire that sought to consume the Cell of Nishmar, bargaining with Ignis Dens for a chance to begin again. But once he and the others defied Ignis’ will, he no longer saw fit to hide Khalius’ tainted soul, and the Inquisition saw through his façade of lies. However, there was one last avenue open to him.
With the chaos of the hull breech, none can truly be sure of what happened there. But when a team came to investigate what had happened, they found a prison door, blown from its hinges, stormtroopers turned to ash, and a two-way mirror shattered, the Psyker behind it, screening his mind for signs of taint, having been punctured, time and time again, with the shards, until not a sliver of the lethal glass remained upon the floor.
[Ankah Urban Legend, Vathis Redhands]
Vathis was like a force of nature: Blunt in approach, indomitable and a force to be reckoned with. His simple iron sword carved its way through heretics, aliens, daemons and mutants alike. His determination to face the foe to the bitter end, while inconvenient at times, was often considered a merit, for though he was reckless, the results he got were undeniable.
With Nishmar and her cohorts to guide him, he was able to do more good for Ankah than all his previous years of being a legend and a rebel. With the rhythm of the concert’s drums beating in his soul, and those of the Ankan people, he would later became a myth, told to scare children of what would happen if they did not attend temple services each week. But this was a myth with foundations in plain sight, for Vathis would continue his efforts upon Ankah for years to come. Guided by the Inquisition’s efforts to re-establish Imperial control, he would be at the forefront of many battles, never content to serve as a leader or tactician, but by example, his hefty zweihander denying Khorne of skulls with every swipe, and the pounding crush of bone beneath his armoured foot
In time, however, the call would come for Nishmar to move on, in search of new, greater threats. Perhaps Lexuta, perhaps others. Whether or not he would be ready to abandon the simple life he knew, in favour of defying the simple truths he knew of gravity and the world, and to voyage beyond the stars in search of a galaxy of foes to slay, only Vathis knows.
[Magos of the Mechanicus Biologis, Ankah Division, Magos Dens]
With Magos Dens out of the way, Kie Tyrannos was free to become Magos of the Mechanicus Biologis upon Ankah, for a time. But not soon after, it was brought to light that he was the one who had infected Widget with the Obliterator Virus to begin with. A large Mechanicus-backed force of the Templars of Steel, backed by Alpha Crimson 20 himself, launched an assault upon his main shrine. Though the Cell had thought him dead twice before, he did not escape a third time. Thus confronted, his body was purged in nuclear fire until naught remained but glowing ash, which was mounted upon the walls of the Biologis shrine, as an ever-burning reminder of the penalty for dealing with Chaos.
[Parliament Member of Ankahn Hive Landerson, Cromwell]
Cromwell had never expected to be fighting Chaos in such a direct way, but his time amongst the Cell, whilst painful in many ways, had taught him many valuable lessons about what it was to truly defend one’s home, and that sometimes one has to prevent future defence from being a necessity, by exterminating your foe utterly. Thus armed with greater military knowledge, he set about making Landerson a place that the Imperium would be proud of, making sure that their sordid past with the Obliterators was forgotten. Eventually, the ruins of Landerson were flattened, and its citizens would help to make a new Hive Landerson, as talland glorious as its predecessor, free from its tainted past.
[Rogue Trader Malakai]
Malakai was another reluctant entry amongst the bands of Nishmar’s chosen, but acquitted himself well. His years of traversing the stars meant he was well-equipped to go into the more dangerous missions, thrusting a powered rapier into the heart of all things Chaos. For a time, though, he felt their life to be too dangerous, and returned to his ship, in order to help wage the war from further away. With the help of the Eldar that courted Ankah’s nobles, their bombardment saw a corrupted Titan destroyed, though at great cost to human life.
With his ship repaired and resupplied, however, he felt no compulsion to stay at Ankah longer, and headed off back into the stars in search of expansion of Imperial borders, and outrageous profit, as is the life of the Rogue Trader. In time, however, Nishmar may call upon him again, to further her quest to rid the stars of the Xenos that ever threaten the Imperium. He would smile at the idea, as the life of a Rogue Trader is nothing without a little risk every now and then.
[Daemonhost of Former Cell Member, Ignis Dens]
With his plans to destroy the Cell shattered by his defeat at the hands of their last rock-off, Ignis Dens knew when he could not win. The game of taunting these mortals had grown boring, and now he had lost an eye into the bargain. And so he would sit in the Warp, and wait, glaring out with his lost eye in the mortal world, waiting for centuries in the darkness, until some hapless mortal fool would pick it up. And then, the games would begin again.
[Unidentified Warp Entity: Hallowed]
The Thing Of The Warp That Identified Itself As Hallowed Had Convinced Sholto To Believe In Angels. Such Things Were Only The Flights Of Fancy Of The Optimistic, However. The Imperium Makes Its Own Angels, And Hallowed Was Something Different. He Had Been There Long Before The Imperium, Long Before The Ruinous Powers, And Would Be There Long After. He Was Of A Thing That Had No Name Anymore, A Fifth Power, Scattered To The Winds. Chaos In Its Rawest Form, It Saw Khorne, Nurgle, Slaanesh And Tzeentch As Great Offences To The Eye As The World Of Mortals By Their Continued Existence – An Affront To The Very Chaos They Were Supposed To Embrace By The Consistence Of Their Being. And So, It Took Form In The Mortal World Once Again, To Deny Slaanesh, And Cause Carnage On A Scale Seldom Witnessed. It Was Pleasing To The Thing Of Malice, That It Had Found One So Trusting.
With The Inquisition’s Binding Of Sholto, It Thought Its Plans Halted. Then, The Ship’s Hull Was Breached, And In The Ensuing Chaos, Made A Deal With Khalius, Sheltering Him From The Wrath Of Ignis Dens, Consuming His Twisting, Wretched Soul In The Process. And Now With A Mortal Body To Wander Material Space In, There Was No Telling What Havoc A Daemon With A Stealth Suit Might Unleash.
[Lady Sarah Fennick of Ankah Noble House Fennick]
Lady Sarah Fennick had cleaned house well. With the help of Nishmar and her cohorts, she became a member of the new Hive government, influencing its people to help keep the spirit of music alive, and to ever be watchful of the sight of Xenos. She donated large amounts of money to equipping the new PDF, and rooting out the other Noble houses in their Chaos and Xenos sympathies, seeing her own reflection in their staunch opposition to change, and mindful that she and hers must never become like that again, with the watchful clenched fist of the Imperium, ever mindful of their movements.
[Madame of Hive Landerson's Courtesan's, Lady Angeline]
Lady Angeline had always acted in what she thought was the best way to aid the Imperium. But when she accepted the Obliterator Virus from the Biologis, she did not know she was merely a petri-dish, in the hands of Chaos.But even before she was put out of her misery, twisting and jabbed at in the laboratories of the Mechanicus, she believed with all her heart that she had done the right thing. May the Emperor have mercy on her soul.
[Chief of Underhive Ratskins, Whirring Vent]
Whirring Vent, and his Ratskins continued to worship the databanks that had been left buried in the depths of the Underhive. Eventually, they were scooped up by the Mechanicus. Their blind reverence to the machines with little understanding of their purpose making them ideal candidates for continuing in the Omnissiah’s glory. Now, Whirring Vent is well on his way to becoming a Magos himself, one day.
[Mechanicus Assassin In Pursuit of Tech-Heresy, Designation Alpha Crimson 10]
Alpha Crimson 10 continued his service to the Omnissiah, hunting down hereteks upon the orders of his masters, whilst keeping his own augmetic sensors trained upon them. One day, he would leave Ankah, and head out into the western fringes, in the direction of Lexuta, following a call that he would tell nobody of, save for the fact that he knew there was work out there for him, and none had the will to stop him.
[Bar in the Noble District, The Inventory]
The Inventory continued as it had done, serving as a refuge for the bored and wealthy to gamble their lives away in. The tales of a crazed monster who had slaughtered their way through the casino’s guards becoming an urban legend, enough to the point where none would consider even letting the suggestion of xenos items through the door again.
[Former Hive Slake Government Member, Cecil]
Cecil and his cohorts were glad of the Imperial support, their knowledge of the land and of their foes proving invaluable to the forces of the Guard. He would then be allowed a position on the council of twelve that ruled over Ankah, his knowledge of the ways before and the mistakes made during Slake’s rule helping to establish order quicker than they would have estimated. The years were not kind to Cecil, however, as he would go out on increasingly reckless missions with his cohorts, eager to prove that he was more than just a pen-pusher and a bureaucrat. He would end up with a fair share of scars that would earn him the respect and disapproval of his fellows in government in equal measure, but what mattered to him was that he felt he was making a difference. The time amongst the Inquisition had made him feel truly alive, and he yeared to feel that again.
[Bar in the Underhive and Unwelcome LotR Reference, The Leaping Stallion]
The Leaping Stallion later burned to the ground, with everybody in it, for little apparent reason, other than the fact that it was a stupid idea for it to have existed in the first place.
[Disaffected Noble Group, The Mon-Keigh Harlequins]
The Noble sons that followed the ways of the Eldar were left behind when their corsair master left the sector. They had few sympathetic listeners amongst the nobles, and were either cast out, or executed. To that end, there was much secret unrest, as many nobles questioned whether rule under the Imperium was all that better.
[Chaos Assassin Group Loyal To Former Governor Slake: The Black Lotus Clan]
With the death of their leader, the Lotus Assassins split into teams, and fled throughout the Hive. For well over a decade they continued to make themselves a nuisance, marking high-ranking custodians of the Guard that had been left there with the mark that had once struck fear into the heart of a cowed populace. Now it was seen as the mark of a martyr to the Imperial cause, and soon they devolved into using much crueller, effective ways to make sure their victims died. Though the vast majority were wiped out eventually, no one can truly say if they are all gone.
[Addendum Regarding Slake's Reported Ability To Inhabit Bodies Other Than Himself]
Though Slake created many labs, filled with his flesh puppets, he was no longer around to use them. The vast majority of them floated, suspended in the bubbling amniotic fluid of their suspension chambers, until the power of the abandoned facilities ran out. Thus, his contingency plan was left to gather dust, as the soulless bodies found their source of life turn slowly to clear, glass coffins, drowning in the darkness. All, save for a few, who had somehow come alive to fight the Cell in the assault of the Palace. No explanation was found for why they were active, and now they were nowhere to be found.
And so ends this chapter of the saga of Nishmar and her companions. No doubt blood will continue to bill spilled, theirs and their enemies, in the name of war. For in the grim darkness of the far future, there is only war.