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This was written to expand on Oculis chiefly, and introduce his "sons" as well as te relationship between him and the Daemonette in the Sword of Lamentations.
Kasr Valtien was a city of rubble. Oculis the All-Seeing, from his perch upon Daemon's Precipice only three miles away from the war-torn metropolis, watched with intense interest as an Iron Warriors warhost continued to batter the broken remains of the few surviving defenders. The Planetary Defense Force for Legiul IV did not survive for very long against Warsmith Takkaris; a very fortunate turn of events for Oculis' plans.
As the many Vindicators of the bloodthirsty mercenaries rolled into the gore-slicked streets of the dying Imperial city, Oculis' attention was diverted by an approaching mental power. He turned his head slightly, flames flickering faintly within the empty eye sockets dominating his face.
A Tzeentchite sorcerer stopped several paces away from Oculis, dropping to his knees as quickly as his power armour allowed. "Father, Kasr Valtien is fallen." His own eyeless sockets were wreathed in ethereal blue flames, not dissimilar to the source of his flesh.
Nodding, Oculis returned his gaze to the fallen city, "Yes. Takkaris is very efficient... for a savage."
"Dimitri and Valkar have relayed reports on their progress for your ears, Father." The sorceror stood, his force staff crackling with muted arcs of red lightning as it supported the Marine's weight. "They've rallied the cities of Kasr Tellis and Kasr Kavak to our cause. The cities rot from within."
Oculis groaned softly in acknowledgment, "Very good, Rashael. Your brothers have done well. What of your efforts?"
Underneath the serpentine helmet, Rashael the Shadow Hand smiled. "There has been slow beginnings, but as all of Tzeentch's plots, a slow beginning masks a grand entrance." He turned away, "The Cardinals are proving resiliant in this system, but I have several other plans should they prove unreliable."
Oculis nodded, "Relay this information to Kayvis. He'll be desperate for news after so long stuck at home."
"Yes, Father." And Rashael was gone.
Oculis contented himself to simply watch the faroff city burn, sending black, billowing clouds of oily smoke into the air as the Iron Warriors rampaged and slaughtered. Frowning, Oculis could actually feel the presence of Warsmith Takkaris leaving the city. Where was he going?
N'Kane muttered incoherently in her obsidian prison. Oculis's hands, wreathed in the crackling energies of the ever-potent Orb of the Unknown, involuntarily clasped the hilt of the Sword of Lamentation tighter, digging the tip a fraction of an inch further into the hard earth at his feet. The blade vibrated wildly as the Slaaneshi daemon within gibbered wildly.
Eventually, she calmed down, and the sword was silent and still. I see you have felt his presence as well. Unexpected, isn't it, you beast? I see even the grand Oculis could not have foreseen such a predictable outcome of this attack.
Oculis frowned, the lines on his face contorting it into an ugly mask of contempt. Be silent, harlot. I have seen and heard every possible outcome of our future. I know what the Warsmith plans. You do not need concern yourself with such matters.
The daemon laughed seductively in her prison. Only the incompetent dismiss their detractors so quickly. Come, come, oh All-Seeing. You are not like that. You can admit your failings to me. You can let me comfort and console you.
Oculis' eyes flared with blue flame. I know your intention, N'Kane. You will not circumvent my defenses with such pathetic attempts to lower my guard. You should know this by now.
The daemon raged once more against her cage, spitting back: Release me! Oculis simply smiled mirthlessly as she continued to wail against her bondage. I tire of your games and I tire of your continued existance! Let me be free!
You surprise me, N'Kane. It's been only three hours since your last pitiable attempts for freedom. I'm impressed.
I am a personal handmaiden in the harem of Lady Slaanesh, you pathetic worm. She will come for me, I promise you. When she frees me, she will rip your soul from your body and gift it to me as an aphrodaisac for my own personal pleasures.
Oculis laughed aloud into the cold winds. In all our time together, my dear, I've come to realize that you are a liar and a deceitful wormling. You've threatened me for almost a decade: Where is your goddess? Slaanesh cares no more about you than about every other dreg that aspires for the tiniest scrap of mortal pleasure. I fear your goddess no more than I fear you. Stop wasting your essence and... In the middle of his tirade, he froze and went stock rigid as the black sword vibrated violently in his hands.
A long silence passed, as the wind kicked up black dust around the Daemon Prince and his Daemon Blade.
...You never learn, do you, my dear?
The orb bound to Oculis' armor emitted a dull blue aura, as the blade of the Sword of Lamentations instantly lost all color. Her senses numbed and all but destroyed, N'Kane floundered in lethargic futility as the orb continued its vampiric assault upon the daemon's essence. All was silent, as Oculis soon returned his attention to the departing Iron Warriors. The winds picked up, and his cape fluttered in the direction of the smoke and the warpath.
I am Narcotick. Fear me.
LO Musicians clan.
That daemonette is far, far too sentient.
Daemonettes, as far as I'm aware, don't really have minds, any more so than bloodletters or horrors. I don't think they can speak (possibly moan and whisper in some obscene and blasphemous way) I certainly don't think they have emotions, or indeed, any conception of pain (save as the all consuming concept of sensation which is actually their existence.)
Of course, I'm not going on anything here save the fact that, in the fluff, they never speak and never show any intelligence beyond the desire to tear out and consume people's hearts (ever so beautifully.) A keeper of secrets, yup, that's a sentient creature, it's intelligent beyond human understanding. Daemonettes.. I don't think so.
Last edited by The_Giant_Mantis; March 21st, 2006 at 22:20.
Not too sure on that there GM. I'm not sure if daemons like Bloodletters, horrors or daemonettes can hold cogent conversation either, but I do know that atleast some lesser daemons can. there's a passage in the Necron codex where Abbadon has a conversation with a summoned daemon. The daemon itself is quite intelligable, though if it the same as the daemons in daemon packs I do not know.
To Uriel himself I ask if the daemonette in the daemon sword is a true daemon-pack- daemonette or simply a slaaneshi daemon. I suppose you could call any slaaneshi minor daemon a daemonette for all intents and purposes, and if the creature in the sword is in fact a slaaneshi daemon of unknown designation the there's a good chance it could converse intelligably.
Nevermore Chapter: 6200 pts; 97/49/11; Longest Streak: 9 Wins/4 Losses; Nearing Completion
I've never seen a Daemonette say anything or show any intelligence in what I've read either, but perhaps they are capable. I haven't seen them portrayed as anything other than enemy or tools, so they hadn't really had a chance to show sentience in one-on-one, so I figured that maybe they'd be capable of conversation. I always thought of Slaaneshi and Tzeentchite daemons as being far more sentient and mentally capable than Khorne and Nurgle. I also agree with Sabe on the point that Daemonette doesn't necessarily mean the daemon pack version. I was thinking of a more powerful entity, like a step above horde but several below greater daemonhood.Originally Posted by The_Giant_Mantis
The emotions come with sentience and maybe Oculis is capable of reaching deep enough into the bare essence of the daemon to cause actual pain. That last point I might concede, but then again, there are a lot of things that are unexplained in the 40K universe. There could be something only he knows about in the sword that, in addition to keeping the daemonic essence bound to it, allows Oculis to cause the daemonette within actual pain.It is a Slaaneshi daemon. She's definitely more powerful than a horde daemonette, but she's obviously not a keeper of secrets.Originally Posted by Sabe
Okay, I think I get what you're saying now.. It makes sense.
Besides, it's not like all daemons are the same. Just as some greater daemons are more powerful/intelligent than others, surely the same must be true of lesser daemons.
Given that, I'd avoid the word daemonette though. While technically it is a generic term for a lesser daemon of slannesh, it's quite evocative of the slavering packs of seductive clawed horrors we know and love.
My problem is though that the daemon in your piece seems to think very like a human. It recognises concepts like pain, fear and self identity. Daemons, even the most intelligent and self aware of them, should surely have different ideas of these things, given their totally different metaphysical state.
I don't think there is any pain, even genuine psychic harm to its soul, which can cause a daemonette to react in the manner we'd expect of a human being in pain. They are living embodiments of the craving for sensation.. even being destroyed is a sensation. If anything, the way to harm such a being would be to stop inflicting pain on it.
Last edited by The_Giant_Mantis; March 22nd, 2006 at 03:42.
Well, I should think that a daemon above the hordes would have a sense of self-identity; they are, after all, really only looking out for numero uno. Aren't their incursions into realspace either for souls for them or to win favor from their patron gods?
But then my main problem is, then, if a daemon cannot feel pain (I'm fine with throwing the fear out anyway; she wouldn't keep trying to escape or take control of Oculis' mind if she feared him after all) I would need to find a way for Oculis to castigate her effectively and immediately for each time she fails. Your last statement was tongue-in-cheek, but maybe his Orb of the Unknown sends constant bolts of energy into the sword for her pain-pleasure, and cutting it off to punish her, but that seems more like a gradual punishment rather than an on-the-spot display of dominance over the daemonic tool.
Actually, my last statement wasn't tongue in cheek at all. In the old Malal fluff, there was a reference to the way Malal tortured slanneshi daemons, which basically implied they were just denied any sensation.. That's why a daemonette would hate being trapped in a weapon.Originally Posted by Uriel Zarium
Maybe the orb can be used to siphon energy away from the daemon in the weapon, weakening it and reducing its warp presence. That kind of numbing, painless weakness seems far more suitable as a form of punishment than any actual pain.
Just remember that really there is no such things as 'dominance' over a daemon weapon though. It's a constant struggle without end.
No kidding? I never had a chance to read anything on Malal since I just started the hobby last year. I do like that idea: it could be done suddenly enough to be a sufficient punishment. It works better than the normal blast of pain; Thank you.Originally Posted by The_Giant_MantisOf course, great power comes at a great price.Just remember that really there is no such things as 'dominance' over a daemon weapon though. It's a constant struggle without end.
Hmmm...in the piece of fluff that I referred to from the Necron codex Abbadon appears to "hurt" the daemon he is talking to by grabbing its incorporeal self and squeezing it with his talon of horus. Somehow he manages to scare and hurt the daemon even though it hasn't been summoned in body, just as a vision to give him info. So perhaps some very arcane items can hurt daemons in their natural form. Though how this is achieved I don't know. The story itself is quite short, its on pg 26 of the necron codex. Its quite a nice little blip, gives you some info on the future of both the c'tan on mars and even a bit on abbadon's fate.
Nevermore Chapter: 6200 pts; 97/49/11; Longest Streak: 9 Wins/4 Losses; Nearing Completion