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As Witch-Hunters are among the most themed and fluffy of the 40k races. So I was interested about you fellow heretic burners theme your army around.
Whats your theme? I theme mine around an Inqusitor and her cronies recruting the local PDF, and getting some aid from a quick reaction sorotias Strike force.
How do you represent this on the table-top? I use an Inqusitor with ST, inducted Guard, and Sisters units with either rhinos, or jump packs (Seraphim+Cannones w/ Jump pack)
Who is your General? Whats their story? My Cannoness is called Alex (my female version of my name). She is trained in the use of lighting warfare, and favours quick, surigical strikes. She has a reputation for leading her troops from the front. She has responded to the call for help from the destinguished Inquisitor Von Burt.
How does your army do on the tabletop?I have yet to try. Oops.
I've never actually gotten round to fielding a full witch hunters list, but what I do have:
Theme and representation: My inquisitor is one of those guys who takes it as he sees it. He sees a daemon or alian, he kills it. If he sees a mutated citizen, he kills them and enslaves their entire family into the service of the arco-flaggelants. He is ably supported by a sinister group of inquisitorial storm troopers forced into his service under sufferance of death. When he goes to war, his devoted warrior priests bring scores of arco-flaggelants and some of his hand-picked penitent engines.
General and his story: The inquisitor came from among the populace of a rich family who wanted him to become a scribe. Being a talented author, he was inscripted by a talented inquisitor looking for new acolytes. After years of recording the feats of his inquisitor lord before he died at the hands of an assassins blade, the inquisitorial heirachy deemed him worthy of a promotion, and this is how he is today. Only the most trusted men are inscripted into his retinue, and he always has 2 crusader body guards wherever he is.
How Does It Go on the Tabletop: Let's just leave it at, for fluff reasons he always kills his target. (It's always his cronies fault, never he's)
Order of The Shield
The origins of this order lie deep within the history of the so called "Emperors Brides" - the former cult of the "Daughters of the Emperor", which were deceived by the infamous High Lord Vandire to become his personal bodyguard.
Already in Vandire's service the warrior women have seperated themselves into different divisions, each of them specialized in one distinctive task. One of these divisions was responsible for eliminating Lord Vandire's political enemies and enforcing his demands - meaning, to kill or instill fear into the hearts of every individual or smaller group Vandire believed was against his rule. These Brides excelled in assassinating high ranking officials as well as whole circles of believed conspirators - be them guilty or not. They have "purified" all targets Vandire desired, ranging from harmless Imperial sub-cults to even Cardinals of the Ecclesiarchy. During these times, their division was known as the Order of the Dark Handed Maiden, and their emblem consisted of two kneeling virgins, holding up longswords in front of a standing Emperor.
When Vandire's treason was uncovered, almost three quarters of this division's warriors have committed suicide*, unwilling to live any further in the guilt they have loaded on their own shoulders by following the High Lord's orders.
[Interlude - Historical Information]
*= Not all of these Brides have judged themselves with the sword. In fact, most of these warriors left their fellow Sisters and joined other forces of the Imperium in order to seek death in battle. Many of these crusaders have died in almost lunatic but at least often quite effective "kamikaze"-attacks, and are amongst those who have instilled great respect towards the Sororitas within the ranks of the Imperial Guard and other armed defenders of the Imperium. The faith these sisters have proved on their crusades to deliverance would later be one amongst the reasons for the pact between the Adepta Sororitas and the Inquisition.
The few surviving Brides, some of them only still living because of the convincing pleas by imperial priests, have been integrated in the newly formed Ordo Militaris of the Adepta Sororitas. Although their traditions as well as the shameful memory of the misdirected activities these Sisters committed under Vandire's rule remained alive as a kind of sub-cult within the Sororitas, it should not be until M.40 that they have merged under the banner of a separate ordo minoris titled the "Order of the Shield", reflecting their intention to serve as protectors of the God-Emperor as well as all he has built and stands for.
The larger part of this new organization came from the Order of Our Martyred Lady, and red stripes on the white robes the "Shieldmaidens" wear stand for the relationship to their patron ordo majoris. Expanding the present monastery with fortifications and military equipment, a base of operations had been established on the remote shrine-world of Aureus Prime. Due to the mountain the monastery is built on, it is referred to as "Hijarna Claustrum", or more appropriate "Hijarna Fortress".
Aside from the order's servants, support personell and a small priestly delegation of the Ecclesiarchy, the Prefecture of Caran D'or (Aureus' capital city) contains two full companies of Battle Sisters including armored vehicles and aerial transports. Each company is officially under command of a Paladiness, although the Canoness often personally leads her Sisters into battle if she is not otherwise occupied.
The two Palatine-Procuratas also serve as advisors and "right hands" of the Canoness.
Since the order is still relatively small, it is not often involved in the larger crusades proclaimed by the Ecclesiarch. However, the "Shieldmaidens" have played a supportive role in the occupation of Salem Proctor and the protection of Cadia. To even out their disadvantage resulting from small numbers, this order strongly relies on hard and sometimes cruel training to form their warriors into a fierce elite. This includes sending it's young aspirants into the dark and near-anarchic underhive of Caran D'or or even far-away macropol worlds to carry the flame of purification to cultists and gangs who try to hide from the divine Emperor's guiding light.
Remarkable amongst the Sisters of this order is their aversion for bio-mechanical implants or deliberately kept wounds and scars. Regarding the ancient writings of the church the form of the human body is sacred, and the Shieldmaidens share an especially strict view of this term.
For them, it is most significant to maintain such a body in itâ€™s original pure shape. They employ a well-equipped lazaret with skilled Sisters Hospitaler who give their best to medicate the wounded in a way that will leave no marks.
This does not mean that there is not a single Sister wearing any scars or implants in the whole order, but rather every single one of them is trying to avoid this to the very best. Inevitable wounds and implants, however, are worn with a kind of pride â€“ however, not a pride that they have fought hard battles, but that they have sacrificed their natural beauty in service to the Emperor.
On the same hand, physical punishments by the hands of the Repentia Mistress posess a much more fearful effect on the Sisters of this order, for they do not only consist of the purification by pain, but also the shameful and segregative bearing of itâ€™s marks on the body which will stay mainly untreated. Traditionally, only those Shieldmaidens whose marks of punishment have fully healed are reaccepted by their Sisters with their honor restored.
The main tasks of the Maidens consist of Purity Control (which fits very well into their hatred for alteration of the human body â€“ in fact, they consider even slightly mutated people not as humans anymore) and fast reaction to anything that the Convent Sanctorum declares a threat to Imperial security and purity. The Battle Sisters of â€śThe Shieldâ€? travel to wherever they are needed to either form the vanguard of following larger but slower Imperial forces or, in case they can handle the mission on their own, complete it in the shortest time possible. The ecclesiarchal destroyer "Purgator" remains in the orbit of Aureus Prime or near the system to ensure quick transportation should the need arise.
Especially in the last few hundred years, the Shieldmaidens had to react to an ever growing amount of requests by both the Ecclesiarchy and the Inquisition, but Canoness Athena sees this as confirmation to her order's achievements. Especially Inquisitor Lady Ravana seems to have developed a kind of favor towards the Shieldmaidens, often visiting their garrisoned monastery as well as frequently requesting their assistance in her missions for the Ordo Hereticus. She and the Canoness seem to share a common mind, and one could often see them walking through the corridors of the abbey together, discussing matters of faith as well as strategies for the future. As far as this term could be applied, they could be called friends.
Last edited by Lynata; May 1st, 2005 at 14:47.
"Do you want your heretic rare, medium or well done, Lord Inquisitor?"
Well, the links in my sig point you to my army fluff. The second link is for a long piece of fiction (spanning the first TWO posts in the thread - make sure you read both!) which desribes the origin of the army.
Essentially the Order of the Ivory Dagger are left guarding the grave of a martyred sister on a remote agri-world which the Imperium had hoped would be rich in minerals. A few of the settling community are left, inspired by and devoted to serving the same cause as the Sisters. A Priest remains with them also.
On the tabletop this manifests itself as a pure sisters force with zealots and priest. The sisters are mainly troops with a handful of seraphim and an exorcist. Led by a Canoness, they favour firepower fights (the zealots acting as bait to get enemy squads close enough), with the seraphim and canoness fulfilling tankbusting and close-combat duties. With the planet being mineral poor, much of the icons are made from wood, there is no gold on any of the sisters, though silver aquilas and fleur-de-lys are commonplace on their armour.
I have considered in the future the possibility of an Inquistor and retinue assisting the force. He would be superficially planetside to fight alongside them but would really be investigating whether the Order remained true to the Emperor or whether they were in danger of revering the martyr more than the Emperor himself.