Silver-white and Blue
- "Victory often rests on the correct weaponry being in the right place and at the right time. Even the most destructive weapons of war are worthless if absent from the battle."
- — Artor Amhrad (deceased) Chapter Master of the Astral Knights
The Astral Knights were a Loyalist Codex Astartes-compliant Space Marine Chapter from an unknown Founding and origin. The Astral Knights sacrificed nearly their entire Chapter in 926.M41 to destroy the hideous threat to the Imperium called the World Engine in the Vidar Sector. This Necron weapon was a planet-sized spacecraft, armed with Gauss Projectors capable of scorching entire planets of all life on their surface. The remaining Battle-Brothers who had not been present with the majority of the Chapter were too few in number to carry the burden of reconstruction. Shortly after the battle the Astral Knights were struck from the roster of active Space Marine Chapter and another Chapter, the Sable Swords, were created to fill the void and took up stewardship of the now all-but abandoned Astral Knights fortress-monastery on the world of Obsidia.
- Castigation of Acralem (799.M41) - The Flesh Tearers, working in conjunction with the Astral Knights, the Grey Knights of the 3rd Brotherhood (which included Kaldor Draigo) and nine regiments of the Imperial Guard, descended upon the Imperial world of Acralem to halt the daemonic incursion of the infamous Daemon Prince M'kar the Reborn and his daemonic army. What followed was once of the most terrible battles of that century, though ultimately the Imperial forces proved victorious and M'kar was banished back to the Warp for a time.
- "This is the first battle I will fight today. To these other Chapters it is typical of the Astral Knights to go our own way and expect them to accommodate us. The Red Consuls strip away everything they were before recruitment, they are soldier and no more. The Invaders have no time for politics at all, they would far rather be up to their elbows in the dead. And the Ultramarines think themselves the model of a Space Marine Chapter and anyone who does not follow the Codex as they do is wayward or worse. We shall have to leave them to their convictions, captain. We do what we must do."
- — Chapter Master Amharad talking to Captain Sheherz
- Assault on the Necron World Engine (926.M41) - The massive mobile artificial Necron Tomb World of Borsis, known to the Imperium as the World Engine, was attacked in the Vidar Sector in 926.M41 by 15 Space Marine task forces plus elements from the Imperial Navy, and even the mightiest weapons the Imperial forces could bring to bear could not harm it. Drop Pods and torpedoes could not penetrate its shields and it was impossible to lock on to with teleport beams. The Imperial task force tried twelve times to overwhelm it through sheer valour and firepower and was rewarded with a string of destroyed and crippled starships and millions of casualties. The World Engine destroyed a third of an entire Imperial Navy battlefleet before the Chapter Master of the Astral Knights decided to ram the hideous vessel with his Battle Barge, the Tempestus. It was only when the enormous Space Marine starship collided with the Necron construct's shields that they finally failed, allowing the Imperial forces to approach their target. A force of over 700 Astral Knights deployed from Drop Pods onto the Necron vessel's surface. For over 100 hours the Astral Knights fought against tens of thousands of Necron warriors and destroyed every flux generator, weapon forge and command node they came upon. Only after the Chapter had been reduced in size to the Chapter Master, Artor Amhrad, and five Battle-Brothers did they succeed in their quest. Amhrad detonated Melta-charges that destroyed a vast Necron tomb complex that housed many of the World Engine's command arrays which brought down the vessel's impenetrable Void Shields and also silenced the machine's weaponry. This allowed the Imperial Navy's starships to destroy the World Engine with Cyclonic Torpedoes. After the battle, as the Adeptus Mechanicus picked over the remains of the destroyed World Engine, the Ultramarines retrieved the twisted wreckage of the Tempestus and placed it amid the ruins of Safehold, the planet that had been the last victim of the Worldengine. The 2nd and 4th Companies of the Blood Angels had been amongst the Astartes task forces dispatched to the Vidar Sector to assist their fellow Space Marines against the threat posed by the World Engine. After the sacrifice of the Astral Knights lead to the final destruction of the World Engine, Captain Donatos Aphael of the 2nd Company proposed that an Imperial shrine be erected upon the world of Safehold in eternal memory of the Astral Knights Chapter. The shrine consists of seven hundred and seventy-two arbalstone statues, one for every Astral Knight Battle-Brother that died stopping the World Engine, that stands a silent vigil within the dead heart of the Tempestus. From that day forth, two Blood Angels of the 2nd Company, and Battle-Brothers from nearly a dozen other Chapters, are always assigned to stand guard over the memorial, which is considered a singular honour for the Astartes that fought beside them for the last time.
Order of Battle
The following represents the order of battle of the Astral Knights Chapter as it stood at the Battle of Safehold in 926.M41:
- Chapter Command: Lord Artor Amhrad, Chapter Master of the Astral Knights
- 2nd (Battle) Company:Captain Pelisaar
- 3rd (Battle) Company: Captain Sufutar
- 6 Tactical Squads
- 2 Assault Squads
- 2 Devastator Squads
- 4th (Battle) Company: Captain Mohari
- 6 Tactical Squads
- 2 Assault Squads
- 1 Devastator Squad
- 6th (Battle) Company: Captain Sheherz, Master of the Fleet
- First Sergeant Kypsalah
- 8 Tactical Squads
- 2 Assault Squads
- 7th Reserve (Tactical) Company: Captain Ifriqi
- Lexicanium Dehaarz
- 9 Tactical Squads
- 8th Reserve (Assault) Company: Assault-Captain Zahiros
- 9 Assault Squads
- 9th Reserve (Devastator) Company: Devastator-Captain Khabyar
- Codicier Valqash
- 8 Devastator Squads
- 10th Scout Company: Scout-Sergeant Faraji
- 7 Scout Squads
Notable Astral Knights
- Artor Amhrad - The final Chapter Master of the Astral Knights Chapter, Artor Amhrad detonated Melta-charges that destroyed a vast Necron tomb complex that housed many of the World Engine's command arrays which brought down the vessel's impenetrable Void Shields. This allowed the Imperial Navy's starships to destroy the World Engine with Cyclonic Torpedoes. Amhrad willingly sacrificed what remained of his Chapter for the sake of saving millions, perhaps billions of human lives. He is considered one of the greatest heroes of the Imperium for his tremendous sacrifice.
- Thade - Brother Thade was a Dreadnought and the last Chapter Master of the all-but decimated Astral Knights Chapter. Following the death of the majority of his Chapter who died heroically in the destruction of the Necrons World Engine, Thade had been left behind at the Chapter's Fortress-Monastery as acting commander of the Chapter's few remaining battle-brothers and Neophytes. To the honoured ancient fell the onerous duty of surrendering his Chapter's fortress-monastery to the newly-founded Sable Swords Chapter, who had sent representatives to claim the all the Chapter's possessions on Obsidia. The ultimate fate of Brother Thade and his fellow Astartes is unknown, but Sable Swords Captain Daegan advised his fellow Astartes to embark upon a Crusade in order to spend the remainder of their lives fighting the enemies of the Imperium.
- Tempestus (Ryza-class Battle Barge) - Flagship of the Astral Knights Chapter, this most ancient of the Chapter fleet, was one of the fienst ships any Chapter could muster. Her machine-spirit was as old as the Forge World of Ryza where her keel was laid four thousand years ago. Only six such battle barges were ever constructed, and only three still sailed at that time. The secrets of their construction had long been lost. But each of the Ryza class were renowned for the steadfastness of their construction. They were built to run minefields and asteroid blockades. Impacts that would break another ship apart could be suffered by a Ryzan without destruction. This made the Tempestus ideally suited for her suicide run against the Necron World Engine. Though the ancient vessel penetrated the powerful void-shields of the massive Necron vessel, the damaged it sustained made it unable to ever be void-worthy again. The mortally wounded vessel was moved to the Imperial world of Safehold and a permanent Imperial shrine erected upon it to stand in eternal memory of the Astral Knights Chapter's valiant sacrifice.
The Astral Knights' colour scheme is known to be primarily silver-white and blue. The blue coloured squad specialty symbol (Tactical, Assault, Devastator, or Veteran) is indicated on the right shoulder guard. Officers within the Chapter are easily identifiable through their use of demi-cloaks with tabards.
The Astral Knights' Chapter badge are two crossed white-coloured double-edged swords, pointing upwards.
- Codex: Blood Angels (5th Edition), pg. 16
- Codex: Grey Knights (5th Edition), pg. 38
- Codex: Necrons (5th Edition), pg. 26
- Codex: Space Marines (5th Edition), pp. 44-45, 49, 74
- The World Engine (Novel) by Ben Counter