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Navis Nobilis and the Warrant of Trade

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#1 Catbeard



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Posted 05 May 2012 - 02:59 PM

I like the Navigator Houses. Alot. Enough to make me want to run a renegade House as the main antagonists in the campaign I'm just setting up. I'm curious to see what other GMs would do to make them decent adversaries, what their goals would be. Would they ever receive a Warrant of Trade, or have a Navigator Lord Captain? Just bouncing ideas around at the mo.

#2 Catbeard



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Posted 06 May 2012 - 03:45 PM

K so my campaign concept goes something like this:

The mutant freaks that are the Navis Nobilis are tolerated by the Imperium solely for their Warp capabilities. Members of the Eccelsiarchy have wondered for millenia what would happen if they could somehow replicate the Navigators' ability, and the Adeptus Mechanus saw the vast potential if a device were to be developed. Of course, any such development would have to have taken place far beyond the reach of the Imperium, far from gaze of the Navigator Houses, for were they to learn of the threat to their powerbase, they would doubtless reveal their power and influence, cease transporting ships through the Warp and bring the Imperium to a grinding halt.

So in the furthest reaches of the Koronus Expanse beyond the borders of the Imperium, a secret research facility was constructed in a system discovered by chartist explorers. The Mechanus provided the means, the Eccelsiarchy the money, but it was a Navigator that provided the key. A renegade fleeing the swift discipline of the Paternova took refuge among the ships that plied the Expanse, and stumbled across the plot purely by chance. the choice lay before him: return to Terra bearing news of the plot to bring about the downfall of the Navis Nobilis, or work with the adepts at the research facility and betray his kind.

But he had seen what few outside the Navigator Houses had seen: the horrors that were his siblings, sisters that were eugenic failures, brothers that were reviled freaks, all put down by their very parents for falling outside the strictures of the the Navigator breeding programs. It was enough to fuel a hatred that would overcome any conditioning. He began working on the project immediately.

For twenty years they toiled, covering their supply chains by using Rogue Traders to deliver goods to secret dumping grounds, or negotiating with the vile Stryxis for equipment, and later, knowledge. For their flashcraft skills went to places that the Mechanius Genators dared not, and eventually heretic laboured with xenos to bring about the end of the mutant. Together they developed Cyclopian technology, designed to replicate the powers of the Navigator's Warp Eye.

Initial tests proved pleasing, and eventually escalated to a level of development where testing on major vessels were required. Enlisting the aid of a desperate Rogue Trader and his fully crewed vessel, the Cyclopian tech was to be tested for a short range Warp jump across the system. But as the ship began the prep sequence, a allied fleet of Navis Nobilis vessels emerged from the Warp over the system.

The ensuing battle was brutal and short. The research facilities were blasted out of existence, the few surviving researchers caught as they fled, but to the Navigators' dismay, they failed to stop the Rogue Trader from making the jump into the Warp. The ship, along with eighty thousand crewmen, vanished into the void.


(more to come when I get home, but you can see where this is going)


#3 Catbeard



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Posted 06 May 2012 - 06:15 PM

 That stuff above is backstory for me; the stuff below is what the players will know:

House Kyreiken was once a rogue trader clan to be feared and respected throughout the Segmentum Obscurus. But the glory of that noble house has long since faded, devoured by the madness that consumed the last true Rogue Trader of that lineage. Captain Bastian Kyreiken squandered the fortunes of his clan in the foolish pursuit of an impossible dream, one which led to the disappearance of The Basilisk, flagship of the house, and a flotilla of a score of fine vessels and hundreds and thousands of men, women, and children of the Empire. Those few members of his family who remained behind never learned their fate, only that the wealth of their house had withered and died, and the privilege to which they had been long accustomed was taken from them. His heirs were Rogue Traders in name only.

It had been nigh on a hundred years since the fall of House Kyreiken; two generations of men and women who cursed their forefather and yearned for the glory of old. Rival Trader clans had quickly dismantled the Kyreiken monopoly, and the power that the name carried faded and died. The Administratum, seeing no benefit in acknowledging the Warrant of Trade when its has produced nothing of merit for one hundred years, had recently informed the few remaining members of the family of their decision to revoke the Warrant upon the death of the current generation of heirs. The doom of House Kyreiken was sealed.

And then The Basilisk returned.

A vessel of the Skaelen-Har Hegemony had been thrown off course by unprecedented Warp Storms while en route to the Drusus Marches, and came out of warp perilously close to the Coreward borders of the Screaming Vortex. And there, silhouetted against the scarlet nebulas of that uncharted region, was a great space cruiser, drifting in the night. There was no life onboard.

The Skaelen-Har immediately made a salvage claim for the vessel, and when the first survey teams opened up the airlocks and proceeded inside they made an most perplexing discovery: the entire ship had been turned to stone. Despite this unheard of transformation it was fully functional; it was only when the salvage crews forced their way onto the bridge did they discover the identity of the ship.

Sitting at the helm was a man, a man made of stone, black as the night into which he had vanished.

Captain Bastian Kyreiken had suffered the same fate as his vessel, and was fused into the command throne; his face, famous for several years as the face of folly, was recognised by some of the salvage crew. The Basilisk had been found.

The Skaelen-Har Hegemony was eager to transport the vessel to its own proving grounds for testing and examination, but they were betrayed when a member of the command staff — a descendant of Captain Bastian — found his personality dampeners overwhelmed, and for several hours was overcome by the discovery. By the time his Skaelen-Har superiors had realised that he had broken free from his conditioning, it was too late; the shipboard Astropath Transcedant had already broadcast the discovery across the Calixis Sector, and the mystery of the Doom of Kyreiken was whispered of in spaceports and hives once more.

The legal challenge to the Skaelen-Har's salvage claim was inevitable; within a year the Hegemony was locked in a fierce and very public proceedings against the legitimate heirs to the ship.  While they argued the Tech-Priests scoured the vessel, practicing their mysterious craft upon it and listening to the Machine Spirits within. The Navis Nobilis demanded it be destroyed. But once the Adeptus Mechanicus was finished with it, The Basilisk was deemed fit to return to duty, under command to be determined by the Administratum Courts on Scintilla.

The sudden death of the few remaining heirs of House Kyreiken came as no surprise to some; a Rogue Trader vessel commands a price few can match, and while the Skaelen-Har claimed innocence, it was widely believed that they were responsible, especially when the immanent termination of the Kyreiken Warrant of Trade was made known. The slayings generated much sympathy for the plight of House Kyreiken, but the beliefs of the masses meant nothing to the proceedings.

Only the Adjudicar of the Administratum could decide the fate of the ship. It has been a year since that fateful decision. 

The Basilisk was returned to its former masters. The God-Emperor smiles on House Kyreiken once more.



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