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The Laughing God

The definitive Haarlock's Legacy speculation [AND SPOILER!] thread

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I think you might be reading too much into the screened symbols. They seem to be part of the standard DH layout package and that same symbol can be found in DH Core on pgs 48, 49, 58, 59 a bit larger (spreading over 2 pages) and slightly rotated, but still the same. Of course,, I guess pointing that out isn't in keeping with a proper conspiracy theory vibe so I'll also say that there must be some reason it was rotated and scaled down to fit on those pages in Tattered Fates ;-)

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Wll, my first post here. 32 y/o, 20 years of playing RPGs. Quite an impresive tread and a lot of nice ideas.

 

ATM, I have started introduction to Harlock's Legacy for my gang of 6 players. All are beteran players, but not in DH... Should be interesting.

Idea is that they are secretly gethered by Inquisitor Marr to inquire in Harlock's matters.

Players:

Lyra Polk, of House Polk, of Icenholm, Sepheris Secundus. 26 y/o, F, Noble born, Adepta Sororita (IHB version). Background - Denounced and Condemned (RHB). Blond, green eyes, pale skin, 175cm, 60kg. Has large Aquila tattoo on her back. "Mind without purpose will wonder a dark places".
Only daughter of inpervished noble, she was destined to inherit all (that was left of once great wealth). But her father married again, and one rule of marriage was that male child (if it is born) should inherit all. Just a year later, she lost everything when her brother was born. 17 y/o at that moment she tried to kill her brother, and was sent to convent by her father. She was pretty unremarkable except talent for languages, but at one moment she had a seizure during visit of the priest from local church. She rambled about "darkness in his soul" and was put to dungeon in fear she was tainted. Saved from it by enigmatic stranger who looked like average Administratum clerk (Marr's adept). Vendetta is to her own family.
Scion of Harlock.

Devicia "Devi" aka "Dice" Hax, of house Hax (junior branch), 197th in line of succession of Lucid Court. Born on Scinila. 19y/o F, Noble born, Scum. Blond but dyes hair Pink, blue eyes, pale skin, 165cm, 55kg. Has Aquilla tattoo as a "tramp stamp". "Die if you must, but not with your spirit broken".
Boredom. Boredom with noble life, with all boring people, with boring masses of humanity. It is so much more exciting when she plays "The Game" pretending to be damsel in distress and robbing her "saviors" blind. Tried same with man who looked to her as nameless Administratum clerk. Mistake of her life. Woke up in cell and was given option of continuing "The Game" in his service or all data about peoples she robbed being published. Vendetta is to the one of people she cheated, who is a mid-tier in Amaranthine sindicate.
Probably 2nd Scion.


Francis "Able" Drake. 22 y/o, Schoola Progenium Guardsman (Naval armsman actually). Brown hair, blue eyes, fair skin, 185cm, 85kg, dueling scar over right eye. "There is no substitute for zeal".
Unknown origins. Joined Battlefleet Calixis straight from Scholla Progenium and was asigned to a Q-ship protecting trade routes. Saved a life of what looked to him as Administratum clerk during boarding action when they were attacked by pirates. Was quite surprised when explained by commanding officier he will be asigned as permament protection detail of that clerk.
3rd Scion.

Ramirez Goodman AKA THX1138. 25 y/o, M, Mind wiped Arbitrator. Somewhat modified "red Vaults of Luglum" background package. Black hair, dead looking green eyes, 180cm, 80kg, twitchy fingers. ""Pain of bullet is ecstasy compared to damnation".
Darkness that burns hotter then a sun, people going mad and dying, yet he survived. Or is it real?
Backup scion.

Guilliman Blackaxe, Son of Marius Blackaxe. 18 y/o, M, Feral World Guardsmen from Monrass. Margin Crusade Vetaran background. Gray hair, yellow eyes, bronze skin,190cm, 75kg. Has monobrow. "Thought begets heresy, heresy begets retribution".
He and psyker assigned to their regiment were only survivors out of force of about 2000 people during assould on the center of "Heretical cult" on unnamed planet. Woke up in hospital with some Administratum clerk standing ovver his bed.

Constantine Storm, 37 y/o, Imperial World (Malfi) Psyker. Shadow Over Thy Soul background, Hipno-Doctrination sanctioning side effect. Fits nicely. :) 190cm, 90kg, brown hair, green eyes, fair skin. "Know the mutant, kill the mutant"
Psyker assigned to 75th Monrass Light Infantry. Together with Guilliman only survivor of masacre.
Another backup scion.

On the route to Scintilla where they were supposed to be fully trained they were diverted to Iocantos where events of "Illumination" happened. Impressed by their handling of affair, their inquisitor will send them to investigate strange happenings in Coscarla district once they arrive to Scintila.
So order of adventures:
Illumination
Edge of Darkness
Another one, maybe "Maggots in the Meat" or "Rejoice...", any suggestions?
Damned Cities
House of the Dust and Ash
Tattered Faiths
Homemade adventure loosely based on "Hard to be a God", they will investigate misterious massacre of one of leading nobles on Zilman's domain which was actually done by Inquisitorial agent gone mad.
Dead Stars
Potential RT/DH crossover campaign in search of only man who could stop Harlock (if they allowed him to return), legendary Inquisitor Lord and Rogue Trader Kobras Aguirre.

More as things happen.
 

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And a question.

There is statue in HoD&A resembling "Bat winged felid" that has halo device attached as a gorget. In Edge of Darkness there is decapitated statue of "some winged felid" in Coscarla district. So what are those? Adranti? Yu'vath (SP?)? Some of their idols? Something else?

Of the same winged felid, concept sounds vagualy known, probably from some clasic SF, Niven probably. Does anyone remember?

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Hi Bojan,

 

Interesting, that winged pussycat! I remember reading about it but haven't linked it to Coscarla yet. Ofcourse it might be nothing, a matter of the same writer using his favourite imagery. Do eoD and the Legacy have the same writer(s)?

Keep us posted on how your campaign develops! will you enter Haarlock storylines in all the scenarios you've mentioned?
 

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The Laughing God said:

Hi Bojan,

 

Interesting, that winged pussycat! I remember reading about it but haven't linked it to Coscarla yet. Ofcourse it might be nothing, a matter of the same writer using his favourite imagery. Do eoD and the Legacy have the same writer(s)?

Keep us posted on how your campaign develops! will you enter Haarlock storylines in all the scenarios you've mentioned?
 

Well, Mr. Bligh is one of the credited authors of DotDG though it doesn't say which author wrote what in that book. Could be a good possibility that he had a hand in that adventure.

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Keep us posted on how your campaign develops! will you enter Haarlock storylines in all the scenarios you've mentioned?
 

No, not all. I am thinking about some wild cards in EoD - perheps some chemicals that Logitians acquired by Amarantine syndicate that they would be able to connect with Slought(SP) later, but nothing too obvious.

Home adventure between TF and DS will be losely conected with Harlocks, but only in background.

 

BTW, first hilarious thing happened on Iocantos. They convinced Aristarcheus to kill himself and Emperor's tarrot exploded. Not a scratch to anyone except poor guardsman who gets killed (he was already wounded, and I rolled 10 for damage). OK, no big deal, random deaths are stapple of DH, but he ask "Which card hit me?" I note "Well there is deck of cards in the desk, drow one random card". Guess what card he drew? Ace of spades...

 

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Adventures continue...
Edge of Darkness - this was nice adventure, they stormed through it quite well - figured Alms House as source and "Enforcers" as tools of whatever evil was behind it. In the end they actually killed Chirurgeon (combined effort by guardsmen, arbiter and sister with some epic rolls) and her remaining crew. Not without loses however - scum burned faith point to avoid FA burst from goon's autogun @ point-blank where I rolled 01 to hit.
Now off to real Harlock Legacy...
1st was Damned Cities - more logical choice then Tattered Fates as Harlock story is only hinted. They did quite well (benefit of veteran RPG players) and realized that 3rd party was killing people for "something he/she wanted". They at one moment figured it was some glass, and later that it was mirror (OORC after talking to Linan Yantra). They were on OK terms with Undertow (ha-again dealing with criminals - like where they are heading - very radical "End justifies the means" approach :) ) but on quite bad with enforcers after killing one of their tails - after that there were threats both open and veiled and even botched attack on them. At the end they manage to bug Scarman's office (and bedroom, emperor bless Female Noble-born Scum with high Fel who kept low key till then :) ) and earn favor from the Undertow.
They got mirror from Tassel. They realized that either Scarman or Khan are behind everything (initially suspecting Khan more - more interest in rising tension between nobility and Undertow, is outworlder, ex bounty-hunter, mayby stumbled upon something at one of his marks), and then when Khan was attacked they knew who it was really. Now for some GM's evil moment - they gave encrypted vox to Constantine to keep in touch with him. What they did not suspect was that Constantine in his naive thinking gave code to Scarman. So after a while "meet you on the docks" signal comes with Constantine's code... They go there and are welcomed by ambush. Arbiters wanted players to come close then blast them to bits with combat shotguns and to prevent any escape attempt. Shooting starts but heavy stubber on rhino jams, then Psyker goes - inflict pain on one arbiter. 9 rolled. Weapons jam. Players charge desperately to close combat.
Now for a hilarious part - psyker decided it is a good time to use spasm. 9 rolled. 90something. Perils of the warp - Gravity reverses. Last for 10 rounds. Rhino, Arbiters and players fly in the air.
Arbiters die, Sister burns faith point to survive, both Guardsmen fall in water (and almost drown), Constantine, Scum and Arbitrator manage to grab a hold and barely hold for dear life while Psyker nonchalantly floats back. Was real "Emperor protects moment". that enabled them to avoid nasty ambush.
Payback time. They team with Constantine who organizes few remaining arbitrators. They manage to make a deal with mob for a distraction and use tunnels to get to Folly (discovered them earlier while pursuing Risen from Amorite) with Constantine and 5 arbitrators. They sent Constantine and arbitrators as rearguard while they stormed Scarman's office and secret room. Nasty fight later they killed Scarman - Feral Guardsman burned faith point and Psyker got his face burned badly (but will get reconstructive surgery).
Deamon seeing almost all is lost and decides to try to argue with players and promises that all will be OK if they complete mirror and that chaos will continue if they don't (he lied :), but no way to know) . He also hints them to whole Harlock's plot and his return.
So what to do?
Drumroll.
Psyker who has only missing shard goes toward mirror and complete it.
Deamon goes away and players now have some real hard questions to answer to Marr - their story will be in general that they managed to banish deamon by completing mirror (which is not untrue is you think about it) - they hope that at worst it will give them some "Blundering fools!" yelling from Marr. Will see - next session will be mostly their interrogation... :D

 

House of the Dust and Ash next.

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Some new news from Black Crusade that may be relevant to our Haarlock enigma: the Tyrant Star does not just manifest in the Calixis Sector.

It also shows up in the Chaos region known as the Screaming Vortex, created during the Fall of the Eldar by their anguish.

Now this is interesting. Is the Tyrant Star in the Vortex a mirror image or opposite of the one in the Calixis Sector? Or does it travel between the Vortex and the Sector? In the Vortex it does the same things as it does in realspace: madness, slaughter, and explicitly mentioned: it messes with time, causing it for example to run backwards.

Now I've also linked this with the Hadex Anomaly of the Deathwatch campaign setting: this weird stellar phenomenon 'spews out time'. What if the Tyrant Star sucks up time in the Calixis Sector, causing retro-evolution and degradation of men to beasts there, and spews it out through the Anomaly?

Also another bit of fluff in the Black Crusade book that I found interesting: the quote on  p316:

"A chalice, brimming with corruption and brutality; it awaits but a strong enough arm to upturn it..'"

- Lord Ingus Fell, Bringer of Decay

There are several metaphors now of the chalice from which the word Calyxis was derived, and it it also featured on the cover art of the Haarlock Trilogy book 'Dead Stars'. This seems to indicate time and again that the Sector is somehow predisposed to erupt in terror and darkness once certain conditions are met ... remember how the Eldar consider the Sector cursed?

They must know something ....

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I went ahead and decided on the nature of the Tyrant Star in my game, and figured I would share it here in case anyone else finds it of interest.  Much of this is based off of the Lexicanum and other fluff sources.

During the War in Heaven, the Old Ones created the Younger Races and used them against the Necrons and C'tan.  The principal armament of the Younger Races such as the Eldar and the proto-orks were their psychic potential and connection to the Empyrean.  To combat this, the Necrons began something they called the Great Warding, with the intention of separating realspace from the warp forever.  Their initial testing device was based on a planet that would later be called Xicarph, and the core of their first, small device would later be found by Solomon Haarlock, and named the Steel Clock.  When properly powered by the energies of the star system, the prototype was able to somehow thicken the membrane between the warp and realspace for hundreds of light years all around, although the effect could not be sustained.

Encouraged by their results, the Necrons began working on a much larger, much more powerful device intended to cause the same effect on a galaxy wide scale, and hopefully make it permanent.  This new, massive installation was named the Echoing Vault and it dwarfed all previous necron works in scale, requiring all four of the remaining C'tan and their Necron servants to pool their resources to construct.

Learning of this, the Old Ones and the Younger Races embarked on a desperate assault, trying to reach the Vault and destroy it before it could be completed.  Their gambit paid off, and at the height of the assault the Eldar wargod Khaine faced and defeated the C'tan known as the Nightbringer, forcing him to flee to a new body as the old one was destroyed.  Taking the Nightbringer's Scythe and casting it into the vault, the entire Younger Race known as the Rashan, renowned for their development of warp sorcery and empyrean mastery, sacrificed themselves in a great ritual, casting the Echoing Vault, and themselves, into the one place the Necrons could not reach:  The Warp itself.  Shortly after these titanic events, the Enslaver plagues harrowed the galaxy, ending the War in Heaven in a tide of blood and terror, and much was forgotten.

However, the area of realspace where these events took place still hold a link of sorts to the Echoing Vault, and the screaming souls of an entire race of masterful warp sorcerors, eternally caught in their own bindings.  These links have become known as the Hyades Locks and are guarded by powerful and enigmatic warp entities, some of which include those the Inquisition has named as the Seven Devils of Calixis.  But there are more then seven locks, and more then seven guardians, and the realspace manifestation of the Echoing Vault wanders from place to place, seemingly at random.  However, it always returns to Dusk and seems to have a special relationship with the accursed planet, and its ancient Crone.

Erasmus Haarlock, empowered by a lifetime of searching and bitterness managed to achieve the unthinkable:  Fulfilling the technological and thaumaturgical requirements necessary to reach the Vault.  All he needed was to bargain with the gatekeeper for the final key of information.  Never hesitating, he took the words of the crone and acted upon them, hurling himself into the heart of the Tyrant Star.  Harrowed by the journey, but not broken, Erasmus learned of the true nature of the Vault, and the existence of the Necron ancients.  Overcome by bitterness, he took up the Nightbringer's scythe and fused with a part of its essence, becoming an inhuman amalgam of Pariah and Necron Lord.  Now he broods and waits for the right conditions to come about to once again return to the materium. 

If he cannot have back the joy and the lives of his beloved wife and daughter, then the rest of the galaxy must be laid waste.  If time will not bend to his wishes, then time itself must be slain, and the stars themselves must be blotted out.

The Night Traveller returns!

And only the intrepid band of acolytes, gathered by Silas Marr for their blood links to the dead Haarlock family and hardened by years of service can stop him...

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Very nice, Bladehate!

On p334 of the Black Crusade book there is mentioned The Anathema, an icy sphere of reality afloat in the Screaming Vortex. A place of order that disorder cannot touch.

Might this be the Echoing Vault or some derivative thereof?

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It could be.  At this point in the campaign though, I've already dropped too many hints about the Rashan, the Hereticus Tenebrae and even the Slaugth (In my game they are an ancient splinter of the Necrontyr that did not follow the C'tan into the machine bodies.  Their bitterness and fear means they will do anything to stop Erasmus, and thus the Necrons, from returning).

I don't think I'll be incorporating too much from BC into this campaign.

The final confrontation is going to be epic though:  A scythe wielding, pariah Erasmus returning from the Tyrant Star, and possibly followed by a few Necrons from the Vault against the party...

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Great discovery today:

Key from auction in "HoD&A" opens Hyades Locks.

Redical Handbook,

p.82:

...great locks or portals through which all shall pass to endless sleap, held fast by ages and secured by the key...

p.83:

...as the only reference to it is contained in Propheticum Hereticus Teneabre and speaks only of "key once held by herald"...

 

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Hey Bojan,

That little secret has been addressed earlier up in this thread, so it isn't a new discovery to many of us, but indeed it's a tantalizing hint isn't it!

I am still in the process of working this all out into an over-arcing Haarlock storyline tied in with some big dramatic sector-wide legends and prophecies. So far I have not come up with a good explanation for the Hyades locks .. there was also something, I recall, about 'show me the portals of sleep', I believe that was written on the key the PCS can acquire during the auction in House of Dust and Ash.

I guess the portals of sleep are the Hyades locks ... 'through which all shall pas to endless sleep'...

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The Laughing God said:

Hey Bojan,

That little secret has been addressed earlier up in this thread, so it isn't a new discovery to many of us, but indeed it's a tantalizing hint isn't it!

I am still in the process of working this all out into an over-arcing Haarlock storyline tied in with some big dramatic sector-wide legends and prophecies. So far I have not come up with a good explanation for the Hyades locks .. there was also something, I recall, about 'show me the portals of sleep', I believe that was written on the key the PCS can acquire during the auction in House of Dust and Ash.

I guess the portals of sleep are the Hyades locks ... 'through which all shall pas to endless sleep'...

 

You might find some inspiration if you go to the source of the key and the locks. Both were definitely inspired by the Cthuluh Mythose.
The silver key is definitely a riff on "The Silver Key" fallowed by "Through the Gates of the Silver Key" both by H.P. Lovecraft which deal with the alternate existence of the dreamlands.

The Haydes Locks sound as if they are taken from the Hastur Mythos. In the original King in Yellow (who most probably is the inspiration for the enigmatic King in Rags and Tatters), Haydes turns up a few times, such as in Casilda's Song: "The songs the haydes shall sing, where flap the tatters of the king..." It has been expanded on by a lot of authors making haydes a lot of different things, though it should be noted that Haydes also happens to be one of the closest star clusters to Earth and is used by astronomers to gage cosmic distances. This has, of course, been worked into the KiY and Hastur Mythologies, though what it means is dependant on who's doing the writing.

So, in essence, perhaps the haydes Locks have something to do with the King in Rags and Tatters?

 

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Is Haydes locks the same as Hyades locks? I am pretty sure that in the Dark Heresy material they refer to Hyades locks.

Do you know some more about these keys and portals/gates in the Lovecraft story? what did the silver key unlock and what were those dreamlands? If the Haarlock storyline was inspired by the Lovecraft mythos, we might glean some more clues here.

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The Laughing God said:

Is Haydes locks the same as Hyades locks? I am pretty sure that in the Dark Heresy material they refer to Hyades locks.

Do you know some more about these keys and portals/gates in the Lovecraft story? what did the silver key unlock and what were those dreamlands? If the Haarlock storyline was inspired by the Lovecraft mythos, we might glean some more clues here.

 

Balls! Dyslexia strikes again. It's Hyades in both DH and in the Hasur/Cthuluh Mythos (as well as the damned star cluster). Sorry for the confusion. Though the Lock part of Hyades Lock only, to my knowledge, exists in DH. But how much the various writes love to barrow from the Mythos, the fact that the Hyades Locks were named such can't be a coincidence ;-)

As for the Silver Key, you can read it HERE and Through the Gates of the Silver Key HERE. The final story in the series, Dream-Quest of Unknown Kadath is not in the public domain but can easily be tracked down. I think the last Book to have it was The Dream Cycle of H.P. Lovecraft.

 

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The exacts of the stories, of course, won't fit the 40k universe, but a LOT of their mood and ides fit rather well. They are based around a desire to escape, a longing for something far beyond known reality. It almost mirrors Erasmus' mad quest.

The key opened the gates of Randolph Carter's dreams, and the realms beyond time, though the key, from what I remember, was almost metaphorical. It's been a long time since I've read those stories, though I reckon this would be a good time to refresh my memory.
 

 

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 I seem to recall reading somewhere in this mammoth thread that someone had compiled a word-document or a .pdf with the summary of all these hints and speculations. Am I hallucinating, or is there such a resource somewhere?

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Huston, we got a problem!

…and he that went before now came last, and that which was white and black and all direction was thrown against itself. Grown mightily indignant at the words of the Gods, Malal did turn his heart against them and flee into the chambers of space ... And no man looked to Malal then, save those that serve which they hate, who smile upon air misfortune, and who bear no love save for the damned. At such times as a warrior's heart turns to Malal all Gods of Chaos grow fearful, and the laughter of the Outcast God fills the tomb of space....'
 

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Very enlightening!

If these ties between that old snippet in the White Dwarfd and the present Haarlock Legacy themes are true, one could assume that Erasmus Haarlock returns as a Caleb Daark figure fighting Chaos god minions but being damned himself too ...

But to be honest I think they are just recycling some suitably doom-laden prophecies and sentences - like chambers of space and the first now come last etc - either subconsciously or coincidentally.

Unless ofcourse we can trace a line from the author of the original text in White Dwarf and Forbidden Lore (is that one of them ultra rare Chaos tomes?) to the writers of the present-day saga!?

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