Knights of Chauvenum

A First Founding

In what may be the only example of its kind, a Knight House is to be established in Chauvenum instead of being brought into the Imperial Fold. Complicating matters are their current fealty to the Dynasty that has claimed their planet as well as the required support from the Mechanicus for their technical and logistical needs. Owing to the labyrinth ties of fealty that is the reality in Chauvenum, the aspirants were required to forsake all oaths before them and swear loyalty to their High Queen (and by extension, their Dynastic mistresses) and vows of mutual support and aid to the Mechanicus.

To further exasperate the troubled Founding, the culture of the people of Chauvenum meant that only women stepped forward for the auspicious event, despite the open invitation. The men for their part eagerly volunteered to become the Sacristans of the fledgling House. Finally, the thought of the mutilation and invasive procedures associated with the neural sockets mortified the population. Exercising the guile and wit attributed to those of the Writ, the deadlock was broken by the creation of Mind Impulse devices cunningly wrought as crowns befitting their wearers. While neural surgery was still inevitable, it was a more palpable alternative to the vanity of the nobles young enough to accept them.

With the pool of prospective Nobles effectively decimated by their customs, this “First Founding” could only gather half a dozen Noble Scions fit for the Ritual of Becoming.

Chosen from the Slain

The youth were chosen for the Founding, for not only were they the most likely to survive the surgical implantations, they were also the most susceptible to the mind-altering effects of the Throne Mechanicum. These aspirants, some warriors, some simple artisans, were led into the new Communion Dome, empty thrones greeting their arrival. As is the fate of all who take the Thrones, they were forever changed by the trial, the tell-tale behaviors of Nobles imprinted or enhanced. Some acquired overweening pride, others an obsession to the warrior code, but all tied by bonds of loyalty and fealty to their liege-lords. Their former selves left behind for a new purpose, these Scions would soon be called Valkyrja, drawing inspiration from ancient Terran myths as well as the auspicious name of their High Queen.

The Floral Pageantry

The Knight Suits for these Scions were assembled mostly from salvaged Cerastus and Questoris-Pattern Knight Suits discovered in the buried colony ship, resulting in their ranks being comprised of different weaponry and eccentricities. Owing to artistic vocations outside their martial duties, as well as a standing lack of established livery, these novice Scions have applied their talents to their charges, resulting in an eclectic mix of patterns to their individual taste. The only common attribute being the naming convention for their Suits: A combination of one of the flowers from sacred Terra, and the most noble and proof metals in the Mechanicus canon.

To Bloom in the Battlefield

They would receive their trial by fire in the wastelands of a faraway planet at the behest of their new masters. Assigned as heavy support to a Deathwatch Kill-Team, they are to sortie in response to the Ork Stompas detected by Magos Janius. Owing to his vast intellect and resources, he has pinpointed their advance along the northern battle lines. They are currently awaiting deployment in orbit…

The Bloodied Rose

Arriving on intercept course, a Knight Lance was deployed to engage the Stompas in the canyon pass, while a Lone Knight was sent to provide succor to the kill-team. The Lance was successful on their mission, punctuated by a plasma reactor detonation from an unlucky Stompa. The entire Dread Mob annihilated, they were quickly redeployed elsewhere by the Archmagos, to clear the way for a specialist…

The Roster of Knights

As part of an agreement with the De Laurant Dynasty, Archmagos Mortigen Hale has been given temporary command of the fledgling House as support for their endeavors elsewhere, in exchange for the dispensation of the Deathwatch Kill-Team should the mistresses require it.

Alycia of Gallius – The First Valkyrja and Paladin of the Adamantium Edelweiss This_Could_be_You_.jpg
“We have our orders, First Lance, move out!”

#OriginalCharacter #OnlySanePerson #SheBakes

The former watch captain of the merchant’s quarter, she was present during the battle in the capital, leading the evacuation as the skies rained fire and black, iron giants fell from the heavens, spitting fire with terrific proficiency to protect their home. A stubborn sense of martial debt meant that she stepped forward as the first aspirant of the fledgling House, becoming the Scion of a restored Knight Styrix.

Armed with an auto-loading Vanquisher Battle Cannon and a Hekaton Siege Claw, supplemented with a graviton gun and rad-cleanser for anti-personnel weaponry, as well as a Twin Icarus Autocannon array for aerial targets, it is a formidable mid-range Knight. While no longer bearing its signature Volkite Chieorovile, the Vanquisher Cannon means it can threaten Titan-Class targets at range with its lathe-tipped rounds. Named after the flowers of her birthplace and unyielding metal, the Adamantium Edelweiss stands ready to support her fellow Knights in battle.

Their recent operations have blessed the Adamantium Edelweiss with the possibility of carrying an Accelerator Cannon, salvaged from an ancient Fellblade. While lacking the Vanquisher Cannon’s rate of fire, its versatile munitions and superior range allows it to engage both Titan-class targets as well as heavily armoured infantry with little difficulty.

Sword-Maiden Katarin – The Summer Blade and Gallant Valkyrja of the Platinum Fire Lily This_Could_be_You__As_Well__.jpg
“The cur spared my life. I shall thank him in my own way, by killing him”

#Tsundere #Ojousama #ShePaints

A prodigy of the blade and shield, this up-and-coming noble of her family has led the seasonal tourneys for many harvests until trouble struck one of their hamlets. A gathering of strangers had occupied the village and the land has been left fallow in their stead. Determined to set matters straight, she led her house’s militia to scatter the troublemakers, but instead finds crazed worshipers. Reaping a harvest of her own, she pushes onward to the hetman’s hut and is met by a challenger. Marked with strange sigils that burn the eyes and a grace unseen in their world, the challenger makes short work of her as the duel ends with her bleeding upon the dead earth, trying to reaching for her sword-arm.

The miracles of the strangers from the stars heal her wounds, but not her arm or pride. The man who inflicted her first defeat was never found, despite his massive stature, and the hamlet was razed in the end for the pestilence that emanated from it. Months pass and word spreads of aspirants being requested by the new High Queen. With the opportunity to bury her shame with fresh glories, she leaves her line’s home and oath on the long road to the capital.

Her kinship with a ruined Knight Lancer was immediate upon seeing its form, and with the addition of the Tempest Warblade, here was her reborn avatar upon the fields of battle; An avenging Valkyrie from which she will write anew her chronicles of victory. Making it known to all her fellow Scions with her Knight’s name, the Platinum Fire Lily will be with which she will find vengeance or death against the warrior who defiled her martial honour.

Lisette the Sentinel – The Iron Rook and Crusading Valkyrja of the Titanium Iris This_Could_be_You__Maybe__.jpg
“I am locked on, tracking the mark in the stratosphere, shall I engage, mistress?”

#Fujoshi #Nurd #SheSculpts

A scholar of engineering by trade, she was astounded by the works of the strangers who occupied the abandoned keep, the lines and symbols of their works speaking of their unusual culture. Soon enough, more strangers arrived from the heavens and along with them came giant beings seemingly wrought of iron. More miraculously, a massive cathedral fell from the heavens nearly a fortnight later, its iron form dominated by statues and forms never before seen in their world.

She was in this very temple when the capital was torn asunder in battle, as giants bearing the livery of the darkest lakes did battle with their own kind. She led the fortification efforts in the temple as knights in gleaming silver and white tabards pushed back a maddened mob from the temple’s door, the giants behind them spitting fire. Before the thronging mass could break through, a dragon of blackest night appeared in the sky and breathed fire, the blinding lance sending everything, even the giants in its path, to blazing oblivion. Overawed by the display, she was struck down by the heat, only awakening days later from her dreams of fire.

Once word spread of the First Founding, she stepped forward for the trials, and despite her less than imposing physique, survived the implantations and remained sane after the Rite of Becoming. Now the Scion of a heavily retrofitted Knight Porphyrion, she brings the most heavily-armed and armoured Knight to battle. With the capability to carry two light Titan-Class weapons, the Titanium Iris’ presence in the field of battle brings good news to her allies and grim tidings to her foes.

Marigold – The Rampant Mistress and Errant Valkyrja of the Silver Lobelia This_Could_be_You___Yep__.jpg
“I shall match them in cruelty”

#EdgeLady #DarkandTerriblePast #SheGardens

In their quest to find suitable aspirants, many would not survive the implantation procedure, and an even smaller fraction of those survivors would come away alive (or sane) upon the Ritual of Becoming. As the net was cast further and further, a survivor of a burned down hamlet would be but another sent to the Mechanicus. Orphaned by what befell her village, and left homeless when it was put to the torch, she said nothing of what transpired in that disease-ridden place.

Whatever horrors she may have witnessed or endured would surface during the Rite of Becoming, as she miraculously survives the trial. Bouts of hysteria and violence would shadow her induction as a Scion, and only when she is within the Knight Atrapos would moments of seeming lucidity return to her. As if kindred to the machine spirit, they would visit indiscriminate destruction upon their targets. This Knight was avoided by the other Scions, as the all-consuming hunger for violence and destruction became a palpable thing to them.

Equipped with its signature Atrapos Lascutter and Graviton Singularity Cannon, foes within sight of its pale, white reflection have mere seconds to live before they are completely crushed or torn apart at the Knight’s pleasure. Armed with arcane devices from mankind’s distant – some would say forbidden – past, the Silver Lobelia brings grief to its foes and allies alike who keep their distance in battle. She was made a Scion not for virtue, but for might.

Maria of the Queen’s Field – The Moonlight Footfall and Lancer of the Golden Lotus This_Could_be_You__Too__.jpg
“The Queensguard shall not be denied!”

#Saber #DesignatedMaskedCharacter #SheSings

The aspirants who take up the task of the First Founding did so for varying reasons, may it be duty, ambition or simply because they had no choice on the matter. For Maria, Taking the Throne was a bitter ascension. Captain of the Queensguard as well as a childhood friend of the High Queen’s youngest daughter, hers was a rising star until she failed in her duty. The High Queen and King’s assassination inside their very capital all but assured her fall from grace. The sting on her pride was nothing compared to her falling out with her closest friend, who now ascended as High Queen bereft of family. Seeing only one way to make amends, Maria stepped forward as an aspirant, swearing new oaths to her queen as a Scion in the new House. What words passed between them may never be known, but High Queen Freyja accepted the new Scion without hesitation.

Bringing her experience in mounted combat, she commands her Knight Lancer with speed and initiative, the fastest Knight of the House always striking first and always being at the right place and time to protect her fellows. Blessed with ancient Photon Thrusters, the Golden Lotus can achieve a turn of speed that outpaces even the agility of Eldar Wraithknights, the moonlit streak left in its wake the only sign of its passing. Melding speed with sudden force, it is armed with its signature combination of Shock Lance and Ion Gauntlet Shield, allowing the Lancer of the House to dive straight into the heaviest fusillade and still charge home, scattering lesser foes and dealing mortal wounds to even Titans, shearing their legs off with the pile-driver impact of her lance. Even distant foes are not safe as only she has been entrusted with a Cyclonic Missile as a weapon of last resort – a deadly javelin that can smite foes that no other weapon can. Whatever promise she made to her liege, she will fight to the death to keep it.

Platina – The Diamond Soul and Castellan of the Palladium Lilac This_Could_be_You___Also__.jpg
“They don’t seem that disagreeable”

#TokenMagicalGirl #TokenMoe #SheKnits

Taking the Throne always has profound effects on those to perform the Rite, but in the case of the youngest successful aspirant, the trauma was enough to awaken her latent psychic abilities. Pouncing on a rare opportunity, Mortigen Hale tempted fate and incorporated the salvaged components of a Psi-Titan’s Warp Engine. After a few mishaps and the odd daemon incursion politely hidden from their Deathwatch guests, she was finally able to control her powers once amplified exponentially by the arcane devices. Further risking the wrath of not only the Mechanicus at large, but also other agencies in the Imperium, Psi-weaponry were been incorporated in the Knight, which proved vital in seeing off the later warp breaches.

Proven unflappable against daemons or even when standing before a warp breach, there were some misgivings from the other Scions with regards to her mental stability, as she seemingly sees the world in a completely different light compared to even her fellows. Delusional optimism and a friendly demeanor combined with her small stature make for a disarming appearance in person, but in battle she snaps battle tanks in two with but a thought and attacks halt mid-flight to be flung right back at her foes. Complimenting her raw psychic powers are Heavy Gatling Psycannons to see off infantry and light vehicles, while null-rods embedded in the Palladium Lilac as well as her spine ensures that she is protected from empyric overbleed, and more importantly, can be subdued should the need arise.

Zahra – The Gaoler of the Leaden Nightshade This_Could_be_You___ish_.jpg
“Die to It, or die to me!”

#TooCompetent #AsianCauseWhyNot #SheSlays

It was not only the Aspirants who were tested if they were fit to stand in the ranks of the Knight House, as the ancient machines buried in the colony ship were decrepit and atrophied, their machine spirits dormant for far too long without the proper ministrations. The more blessed they were by the Omnissiah, the greater the heights they would fall from to corruption. None more so than the ancient Knight Suit labelled with the most base of metals, coupled with a most venomous flower – A Knight possessed by an Abominable Intelligence.

Many Magos advised against allowing such a machine to exist, imploring the Archmagos that the tainted creature be consigned to the Ark Mechanicus’ solar heart. On the counsel of Janius, the master of the Iron Promise instead charged the most capable Noble of the House to bear the harshest and most willful of steeds. Where this Noble’s origins lie is a secret that both Janius and Hale keep close to their iron hearts, but has been accepted into the High Queen’s ranks all the same. Attempting to prevent a woeful repeat of the Kaban Machine, Janius poured his considerable genius into shackling the sentient machine to the directives of its Noble mistress, allowing it freedom to use the Motive Force imbued in its metal body without needing direct input from the Throne Mechanicum.

Representing a divine microcosm of the Trinity of the Omnissiah, Motive Force and Machine God itself, Zahra, the Knight Suit and the Intelligence housed within can outmatch a Titan Maniple in open battle. The Intelligence molds the Atomantic-Ion energies it projects to anything it desires, from a whirling Shield that can deflect any blow short of Titan-class weaponry, to tearing beams of energy that sunder the molecular bonds of anything it touches. The combat instincts of the Noble sees through feints and gambits that can wrong-foot the dogmatic intelligence, as well as formulating spontaneous strategies at the blink of an eye. Not wanting to stifle the potential of such a machine, a Knight Baron was specifically created accommodate a more powerful Atomantic Core salvaged from a ruined Contemptor Dreadnought, unbeknownst to their Deathwatch guests. The Noble instead wears the entirety of the now-diminished Throne Mechanicum in an armoured suit, ensuring she maintains a noospheric link to the Nightshade when the battle demands they separate, however temporarily.

Woe to the foe that thinks her vulnerable outside the Knight Suit, for Zahra wears the only surviving example of the STC Thermae Missile Suit in the galaxy, an indomitable armour capable of surviving the footfalls of Titans and direct Lance strikes unscathed, and its wearer unharmed. Now the trump card of the fledgling house, they have yet to be deployed in battle, the ongoing wars and skirmishes deemed unworthy of her presence. What battle could possibly demand her arrival must surely weigh heavily upon the shoulders of the High Queen and the Archmagos alike.

+ + GREATER PASSAGE REQUIRED FOR COMPLETE ACCESS TO ARMAMENTS + +

References:

Floriography – A more western-influenced language of flowers
Hanakotoba – No points for why (and for whom!) this is also listed
Noble Metals – A place to start with the metal theme, obviously

Cerastus-Pattern Knight
Questoris-Pattern Knight
Knight Porphyrion

Knights of Chauvenum

Warhammer 40,000: Fantasy Flight Cinematic Universe™ Veloranz