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I posted the start of fluff for my original chapter a while back and since then it has undergone a few major changes. This is the first draft of the Ceteri Frater. The entire company goes to battle on bikes, fluff wise because they can get to a planet and leave quickly with them. Army wise, because a whole lot of bikes just looks cool. Any CC is welcome (Just remember it's a first draft and I know there are lots of spelling and grammar mistakes )
Chapter one: The Ceteri Frater
The grand hall was silent as the black armoured priest walked amongst the thirteen bodies laying on the stone tables. At the head of each table stood marines robed in black, helmets removed and held tightly under the armoured arm of each. Seventy warrior all armoured in the same crimson armour as the dead watched in silence, each saying a silent prayer for those that had been lost. When each body had been blessed, the chaplain looked upwards and towards the great throne of silver
“They have been blessed my lord…”
From the throne rose a man taller than all in the room, his gaze fixed on the floor beneath him. The chapter masters face covered by a ornate and ancient mask that had once been white but now had faded to a dirty grey over the many years and battle that it had seen service. His body was encased with armour of the same crimson as his troops, decorated with hundreds of purity seals, honours and golden trims. With each step that the giant took down the hall and towards the dead, the weight of his boots thudded against the steel, ringing out and breaking the silence. The man turned to face his marines, the attention of all upon their master.
“It is a sad day to lose brothers to the horrors of war. We pray now that each is guided to the emperors light and live on in death, fighting for the just and good that they did in life. Use this feeling of loss to fight our enemies with ferocity and power, use it to purge the galaxy of all the impure” As the speech ended each brother slammed a fist against their chest and in unison spoke
"Whilst chaos exists so shall we, whilst the impure exists so shall we. We are the Sons of Baalich, servants to the emperor, blessed be his name”
With the ritual over, the marines began to leave the hall except those that had stood in silence with the dead and not a word was spoken until they were alone with the chapter master and the chaplain who had performed the ceremony of the dead. Each marine knew what was to happen to them now; they had lost their sworn brothers and no bond could be forged with another as it was to them. The chaplain stepped forward and slowly removed the skull inspired helmet that had been covering his head, revealing a disturbingly scarred and ancient face.“
You have lost those you swore to serve along side and now that oath is broken, it is time to take another and this shall be your final oath”
The chaplains words were slightly slurred as he had lost use of the right side of his mouth, the lips sealed together by one of the many scars. Motioning them to follow, the elderly man left the hall and made his way through the winding tunnels and corridors that made up the chapters base of operations, the battle barge ‘Baalichs Revenge’. The chapter master had been following behind in silence, his gaze fixed upon the marines from behind the tinted eyes of his helmet. As the small group stopped at the dead end of one of the corridors, The priest Peritus pressed his face against one of the wall pannels and with a few beeps and flashes, a secret door opened to reveal a darkened staircase leading down into the barges belly.
From the staircase the group emerged into a shrine that was bigger than any hall in the barge. Along its walls stood stone monuments of various brothers, all having been champions that had seemingly been lost in battle over the many years and at the foot of each statue sat a suit of power armour. As they made their way deeper into the shrine the robed marines noticed hundreds of plaques depicting battles of the chapter that had been had over the centuries. From various passageways and room scurried tech priests and servitors all busy with work, hidden from the rest of the chapter that were living without any knowledge of the great world beneath them.
“Stop!” Peritus yelled, pointing towards the sight in front of him “You will bow to Baalich, chapter master”
The marines instantly dropped before the sight before them, each riddled with confusion. Housed in a great glass chamber stood a ancient and decrepit body. Brown leathery skin was stretched over the decaying bones, lifeless sockets staring out across the shrine, arms crossed across its chest. Tubes and various instruments were hooked up to the container seemingly keeping the body as pure and intact as possible.
The troops were not surprised that whoever this man was had been kept as a shrine for worship, but rather that he had been hidden away from all eyes save those who lived in the underside of the barge. Stepping forward, the chapter master removed his helmet and placed it at the foot of the container, bowing his head. Turning towards the robed marines he closed his eyes as if a great weight had been lifted from his shoulders.
“This is Baalich Loricatus, father and living founder of our chapter. I, like the champion before me and his before him took up the name and living existence of our master to keep this great mans honour. If the master is killed in combat, another takes his place and lives on”
The recruits kept their heads bowed and said nothing. The chapter had been built on the foundation of truth and honour to ones battle brothers and each felt a sense of sadness that the man they had followed was nothing more than a living memory.
“Baalich was betrayed by a follower of chaos, a rouge inquisitor that gunned him down without combat or honour and we could not let our master break the oath that he had swore to the emperor” Motioning to stand, Baalich continued “This is where you now take your final oath to the chapter. This inquisitor is still roaming the galaxy and with no oath to your brothers, you are charged with joining the Ceteri Frater company and bring the traitor to justice”
Although each marine had been trained and conditions for all situations a wave of concerned mutters washed through the group as the Ceteri was mentioned. The marines had seen the small band of warriors dock with the barge and within an hour of arriving they left without anyone witnessing there presence. The Ceteri recruits were moved on once again by the elderly chaplain and into a small docking bay that would be almost invisible to anyone more than a few hundred meters away from the ships body. There sat a single Thunderhawk gun ship with several children huddled in front of the black hull. Stepping up to one of the children looking like a giant to his infant frame the chapter master began tilting the boys head from side to side
“These will do. Peritus, take them and begin their initiation”
Without a word the priest ushered the children from the docking bay and into the heart of the ship.
“You will board the Thunderhawk and it shall take you to the place of your final oath to your brothers. Go and may the emperor protect”
With those word Baalich turned and walked from the group just as one of the access hatches on the thunder hawk opened with a hiss and slammed down onto the metal ground of the bay. In silence each marine stepped up the ramp and into the darkened interior of the ship.
The squad of marines saw or heard no sign of life on the thunder hawk. It’s engines roared to life and blasted into the void of space. It was hours before there came any change to the silence as the engines of the ship began to fade and the familiar thud as its metal shell landed, signalling the start of this new service in the name of the emperor and the chapter. The same door in which the marines had entered the ship slowly opened with a gush of air allowing the sunlight of the outside world to pierce the darkness in which they had been cast. Each marine stood and in a single line walked from the ship and onto solid steel ground.
Standing before them stood thirty astartes, each clad in the same crimson power armor that the newest arrivals had once wore but where the chapter had pearl white helmets and trims, these marines had raven black instead and each suit of armor was heavily chipped and damaged from years of battle.
“I am captain of the Ceteri Frater, Celebrer and you will call me as such. Speak your names so those who you now serve may know those they are to oath with”
The captain was dressed the same as the other silent marines. His helmet was removed showing silver hair and piercing green eyes. Each of the recruits stood tall and straight as he spoke, his voice being soothing but also demanding of respect. Stepping forward the first of the group spoke.
“I am sergeant Fortis of tactical squad Duos. These behind me are my brothers of oath Laus and Obstin”
From behind him stepped forward two more of the group and moved their hands to sign the Aquila of the imperium. The three looked exactly alike with broad shoulders as all astartes did, eyes that sunk deep into the skull and a shaved head. The other marines each took their turn in announcing their names to the group and once they had finished the Ceteri captain gave a nod whilst eyeing each in turn.
“We know your names and with this courteousy we shall give our own so you shall know who you are to oath with”
The first power armoured marine stepped forward and beat a metal gauntlet against his chest announcing his name and in turn all did the same. When each had spoken the dock fell silent until at last Celebrer spoke once more.
“You know our names and now to proceed you must swear the oath of kinship to us all and to each other just as you did in front of lord Baalich. Do you swear honour to your brothers? Do you swear loyalty to our cause whatever it may be? Do you swear to protect the imperium of man and the honour of the emperor, blessed be his name?”
“We swear” came the response not only from the newest members of the Ceteri, but also from each power armoured warrior along with the captain himself. “You have swore the oath with us all and now you may learn of our plight and the consequences we must face in order to restore the dying honour of our beloved father”
For two hours the group were given a briefing of all the questions they needed answering. They were located on a planet used mainly for mining and with very little imperial forces stationed on its surface. The Ceteri had needed a base of operations away from the main chapter force so that they was not hindered in their search for the traitor that had murdered the first primarch in cold blood and so they constructed a vast underground stronghold away from prying eyes so that their activities may go unnoticed by any who would suspect.
“Captain, forgive if I am speaking out of line but why would the chapter keep the Ceteri a secret? We are hunting a criminal of war and I’m sure the imperium would be willing to help track him down” said Fortis after the information had been given. The captain gave a nod and lead the group down into the stronghold in silence, signalling that he would show them the reason. With each step a strange chorus of screams and whispers began to fill the metallic hallways and a scent of blood, disease, urine and other bodily fluids hung on the air. Celebrer placed a palm against a thick metal door and with a few beeps and flashes his genetic code had been recognised and the door swung open. Stepping inside each of the marine recoiled at the sight before them.
The room held three cages with no visible door to any of them and each housed a single man and by their size and the shape of their beaten and bloodied bodies, they were quite obviously space marines.
“Our search leads us into the very heart of chaos infested worlds, the warp and any other place where the unclean may wander. These were once proud and strong like us but they were flawed and have fallen to the madness of chaos.”
Fortis moved forward first his eyes fixing on the inhabitant of the closest cage. His hand moved together to form the Aquila in instinct
“To save our fathers honour we expose ourselves to chaos and many don’t make it alive. This is why we hide away from our chapter brothers. The Ceteri Frater are fragile and if the imperium were to know of our actions both the Ceteri and the chapter would be purged”
“This is madness” The voice came from one of the marines at the back of the group, a man called Retan. He was the lone survivor from his devastator squad and was known to not only be a fierce warrior but also a very gifted tactician.
“Madness? This is the price we pay for our fathers honour brother. This is the duty that we share” The captain replied
“Duty? I will have no part in this”
“You swore an oath to your brothers and you can not break it so easily. You would defy us? Defy your brothers?”
“You are not my brothers, you are heretics!”
Without warning Celebrer reached down and wrapped his metallic fingers around his bolt pistol and with one swift motion that to the other marines looked almost beautiful, he brought the weapon up and let off a single shot into the marines skull. Bone and brain matter exploded across the silver walls followed by cries of joy and laughter from the chaos infested marines that had been observing the scene with excitement.
“If we are ever to find he who betrayed our father then the Ceteri can not have any who show doubt. This is our fate, do the rest of you accept it?”
Last edited by Price; March 29th, 2012 at 23:26.
Pretty damn cool.
The only thing which didn't really work for me, and it might just be a personal thing, is the rogue inquisitor. Firstly, because it's just an overused idea and any idea gets a bit tired when you see it enough times, and secondly because I'm not even sure it's the most dramatically appropriate.
I think if you want your villain to be an "enemy within" who is manipulating the characters by posing as a friend, a rogue inquisitor is still a good idea. It's still kind of overused, but it works. Heck, the Inquisitor doesn't even need to be "rogue" to do this, normal, loyalist Inquisitors still make good scheming bastards. However, if you want a straight up antagonist who can gun down an elite space marine leader, flee into the heart of the eye of terror and survive decades or centuries of horrid mutation, I'd pick someone with a little more physical threat.
Last edited by The_Giant_Mantis; March 30th, 2012 at 05:38.
Good points, thanks for the feedback.
I may change it as I (with my limited knowledge of other peoples fluff) thought that the enemy within would have been the overused idea. I'll think of something, maybe his second in command hmmm...