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Bronislaw Czevak

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"I will leave this galaxy a better place than the spiritual cesspool into which I was born, percolating in its own self-righteous stagnation."
— High Inquisitor Bronislaw Czevak
Inquisiotr Bronislaw Czevak

High Inquisitor Bronislaw Czevak

High Inquisitor Bronislaw Czevak was a distinguished and controversial member of the Ordo Xenos active in the Moebius Sub-sector during the second half of the 41st Millennium. After almost 400 standard years of service to the Imperium and the Inquisition, and already suspected by some of corruption, he disappeared during an archeotech reclamation on the planet Darcturus. Except for a short interval, he was missing for some 30-standard years and was presumed dead. He secretly resurfaced in the first century of the 42nd Millennium having spent much of the intervening time as a prisoner in the Black Library, the secret Eldar Craftworld that is hidden in the Webway and acts as their repository for Chaos lore. He eventually acquired a new retinue of Acolytes, and has since embarked on a self-imposed mission as a freelance agent, working to thwart Chaos and champion the cause of the Imperium of Man. He directs his main efforts against the Chaos Sorcerer Ahriman, who is his prime opponent and nemesis. Imperial authorities regard him at best as a Renegade in possession of dangerous but valuable knowledge, and at worst as a Heretic and Traitor liable to be summarily executed. Throughout the galaxy, Traitors, Chaos Cultists, Heretics, Imperial opportunists and many aliens crave his knowledge of the Black Library and its lore, while the Eldar Black Council has likely condemned him to death, considering the same knowledge too dangerous to be held by an untrustworthy Mon-keigh.

HistoryEdit

OriginsEdit

It is not known where or when Czevak was born and raised. He attended a Schola Progenium called the Schola Byblos, which indicates he was the orphaned son of Imperial servants who died for the Emperor's cause. As he does not possess psychic ability, is not gifted physically, and is only an average fighter, he was presumably selected to become an Acolyte of the Inquisition due to his heightened survival instincts, his razor-sharp intellect, and his keen curiosity.

Czevak served as an Acolyte to Inquisitor Furneaux of the Ordo Xenos and eventually achieved the status of High Inquisitor (equivalent to an Inquisitor Lord), who served primarily in the Moebius Sub-sector. He was considered a learned and opinionated proponent of the Thorian philosophical sect of the Inquisition. However his unconventional views, which some of his fellow Inquisitors considered to be of the Radical persuasion, prevented him from becoming the Grand Master of the Inquisition's Moebian Conclave, even though he was its senior-most member.

After almost 400 standard years of service to the Imperium, Czevak had undergone extensive rejuvenat treatments that kept him alive long past the human body's natural lifespan. By the late 41st Millennium he was little more than a dessicated frame held together by a specially constructed cryogenic suspension suit. A blister helmet concealed an implanted bionic controller for the suit as well as his hairless scalp and deeply lined face. However, his intelligence, curiosity and argumentative, opinionated manner had remained as sharp as ever, coupled with his accumulated vast knowledge and experience.

The Eldar ConnectionEdit

During his long and distinguished service as an alien hunter for the Imperium Czevak came into close contact with the Eldar many times, and established a relationship with them, especially the leading Eldar of the declining Iyanden Craftworld. Notable among them was Iqbraesil, one of the Iyanden Farseers. These contacts were apparently officially sanctioned or tolerated by Inquisition authorities, at least at the start.

At some point, while Czevak was the Eldar's guest in Ilyanden at Iqbraesil's invitation, he was treated to a unique spectacle. In an unheard-of gesture, the Eldar allowed him and members of his entourage to witness a performance by the Harlequins -- this honor, however, as well as his whole interaction with the Eldar, may have been part of their plans to manipulate him. Czevak learned a lot about Eldar culture, history and science. This included some knowledge of the Wraithguard and of the related Eldar reanimation and soul-transference technology encapsulated within the Soul Stones.

Radical IdeasEdit

Czevak was deeply dissatisfied with the Imperium's cultural and technological stagnation and repression. Through his congress with the Eldar he had come to believe that the terrible nature of threats like the Tyranids required nothing less than the physical leadership of the Emperor of Mankind Himself once more. Czevak became obsessed with utilising the Eldar's resurrective incarnation technology in order to make the dying Emperor whole once again. This was thought by others in the Inquisition to be at best misguided and at worst treason. Heated Inquisitorial Conclaves were held, and Czevak was often threatened with sanction by the more Puritan Inquisitors and generally admonished to stop pursuing the study of alien lore.

DarcturusEdit

In the late 41st Millennium, Czevak discovered the ancient crash site of the lost Eldar Craftworld Uthuriel, which had fallen to the planet Darcturus in the Moebius Sub-sector. Czevak lead an Ordo Xenos expedition to the planet, a large operation that required support from the Adeptus Mechanicus, the Adeptus Ministorum and the Imperial Guard, and required the presence of his full retinue of Acolytes as well as a Deathwatch Kill-team. Czevak was specifically looking for the splintered Craftworld's shrine dedicated to Kaela Mensha Khaine, and its Avatar of the Eldar War God. The shrine was indeed found, and accompanied by the Deathwatch Space Marines and his retinue, Czevak entered it to discover the intact, enormous statue of Khaine on his throne. Czevak secretly hoped to glean further knowledge concerning Avatar reanimation technology by studying the artefact, in order to further his aim of resurrecting the Emperor. Czevak's retinue discovered their master's true purpose only at the last moment.

Unbeknownst to Czevak, the Inquisition hierarchy of the sub-sector had reached the limit of its tolerance for his radical ideas and continuing involvement with xenos, and had decided to rein him in. Upon discovery of the Avatar of Khaine, the Deathwatch, secretly acting under the direct orders of Moebius Inquisitorial Conclave Grand Master Ephisto Specht, placed orbital bombardment markers on the statue while also announcing their intention to take Czevak and his retinue into custody for transport to an Inquisition base. There, Czevak's eventual fate would be decided. Although Czevak accepted his arrest, a misunderstanding caused violence to break out amongst the Imperials. In the middle of the firefight, a troupe of Eldar Harlequins made a wholly unexpected appearance and proceeded to kill the members of the Deathwatch squad, while leaving Czevak and his Acolytes untouched.

Black LibraryEdit

The Harlequins activated a Webway communications interface to a meeting of the Black Council, the governing body of the Black Library within the Labyrinthine Dimension. The Black Council was the closest thing the Eldar had to a centralised advisory body for their entire species. The Council made Czevak an offer he could not refuse: he was "invited" to the Library to study its accumulated lore concerning Chaos and to help thwart the Chaos Sorcerer Ahriman, who had tried to gain entry into the Webway and the Library for millennia in pursuit of his own quest to better understand and master the power of Chaos and his own patron, the Chaos God Tzeentch.

Over the objections of his then-Interrogator Raimus Klute, Czevak accepted the Black Council's offer. Klute, previously Czevak's chirurgeon, then proceeded to inject him with various vaccines as a precaution for the journey, among them a vaccine for a powerful strain of the meme-virus. This virus infected the carrier and altered his neural patterns to produce an insatiable, irrational thirst for knowledge, a near-photographic memory and enhanced pattern recognition ability. It also had occasional side-effects, including the inducement of vivid hallucinations. Klute knew that Czevak's cryo suit would probably inhibit the inoculation of the meme-virus, leaving Czevak infected. Czevak accepted this, as this meant that the lore of the Black Library would be even more accessible.

The Black Library is a "dark" Craftworld eternally travelling through the Webway. Its location and route are secret, hidden from all but the Harlequins and the members of the Black Council. Like all Craftworlds, the vessel is conscious and psychoactive, hiding itself from all psychic probes, while simultaneously repelling Warp entities and intrusions. It is an enormous construct with a scorched, crystalline appearance, covered in vanes and flourishes but with the typical flowing grace of Eldar architecture. The interior is an intentional labyrinth with all manner of convoluted passages, corridors, and chambers. Bubble vaults full of stasis caskets containing forbidden lore and dangerous artefacts hang from the superstructure, whilst inside and above are myriad citadels, obelisks, monoliths, and spires where the rest of the Craftworld's arcane contents are kept.

Czevak was taken to the Library, where he mainly studied at the Wraith Tower, the section of the Library devoted to humanity's interaction with Chaos, the accumulated lore of the Imperial Traitors. Several standard years later, and no longer needing his cryogenic suspension suit to enhance his mobility due to the Webway's natural regenerative effects upon human tissue, a much younger-looking Czevak returned to realspace and the Imperium.

Ahriman and XarchosEdit

Czevak's return to the Imperium was a major political event. Adding to the controversy surrounding him, he had become a celebrity, looked on as a champion by the Radicals in the Inquisition while serving as a lightning rod to Puritans, who nevertheless craved his newly acquired knowledge even as they sought to destroy him and any who supported him. The politically astute Inquisition authorities allowed him to resume his duties and reassemble a retinue of Acolytes. They assigned Klute (now an Ordo Xenos Inquisitor in his own right) to look after his protection, mindful of his knowledge's value.

However Czevak’s return to the Imperium proved to be short-lived. Not long after, while attempting to run through the blockade erected by the Forces of Chaos around the world of Cadia that signalled the beginning of the 13th Black Crusade in 999.M41, he became the victim of a superbly executed Thousand Sons' illusion and ambush, and eventually found himself captive in the Impossible Fortress, the Chaos Sorcerer Ahriman's own flagship, where he was held for several standard years.

Ahriman wanted Czevak's knowledge of the Black Library, and more specifically, the activation runecodes for a Webway portal discovered by the Thousand Sons on Etiamnum III. Ahriman's apprentice Korban Xarchos was tasked with Czevak's lengthy interrogation during which Czevak went through unimaginable physical and psycho-spiritual torture. He confessed all his most embarrassing and personal secrets, as well as his knowledge of the methods and assets of the Inquisition. He even revealed damning secrets held in the Library -- but nothing of the Library itself or of a way to find it. Under the most arcane and unbearable torture, Czevak resisted all attempts to divulge the Library's own secrets, and he realized that the Library had somehow psychically secured his knowledge of it, rendering him unable to reveal information about it under any form of coercive pressure.

Finally, the Traitors produced the ravaged form of Joaqhuine Desdemondra, a former associate and secret love interest of Czevak's who had been canonised as a Living Saint by the Ecclesiarchy. Being a Reanimate, an immortal mutant, she was tortured in front of Czevak with repeated death by incineration. Czevak's love and sorrow over the suffering of another finally broke the Library's psychic wards, and Ahriman's subsequent and forceful mind-invasion forced Czevak to unwittingly reveal the Etiamnum III portal's runecodes.

Even more damaging unwilling revelations by Czevak were averted when the troupe of Harlequins assigned to watch him suddenly appeared, boarding over from a cloaked Eldar vessel. After a fight with Ahriman, they managed to take Czevak away from the Traitors.

Return to the Black LibraryEdit

Czevak was returned to the Webway and the Black Library. This time he was imprisoned (for his own and the galaxy's protection according to the Eldar) as one of its living specimens and exhibits. Confined in a cell within the Wraith Tower that, like the rest of the Library’s interior, was mostly transparent, he spent his days furthering his knowledge of how to combat Chaos. Thanks to Eldar medical attention and healing techniques, as well as the Wraithbone environment's restorative properties, he quickly recuperated from the Thousand Sons' tortures. He naturally rejuvenated, acquiring an even younger, athletic appearance, and boundless energy. He had occasional visitors, curious Eldar who wanted to personally see the human polymath, Chaos expert and famous prey of Ahriman. He was once even scrutinized by a rare human visitor, likely an Illuminatus, an incident that set his mind to thoughts of escape. His personal attendant was Iqbraesil’s daughter Adara-Ke, a long-serving Guardian-Scribe of the Library, but it is not known whether she was assigned because of Czevak’s previous relationship with Iyanden.

Czevak became the subject of a Black Council meeting as quite unexpectedly to the Eldar Farseers, Ahriman had used the knowledge extracted from Czevak to breach the Webway. Because of this threat, most of the Council's members were in favor of either imprisoning Czevak for life or even better, terminating him, as he was deemed too independent, unpredictable and dangerous due to his knowledge –- which, most Farseers were convinced, would eventually somehow fall into the wrong hands.

Farseer Iqbraesil, who sat on the Council as Iyanden’s representative, disagreed with the majority’s verdict on Czevak, believing that he still had a worthwhile and beneficial role for the Eldar to play in the galaxy. He instructed Adara-Ke to help Czevak escape while the Craftworld’s attention (and most of its residents) were at the Black Council meeting.

The Atlas InfernalEdit

Adara-Ke informed Czevak of the Black Council's proceedings and of her father’s plan to have him escape death and the Library. She gave him a bulky, ancient Imperial tome with covers of burnished, golden, astonishingly lightweight and resilient metal with a unique sheen. The book’s title, written in High Gothic, was the Atlas Infernal. It was an organic, adaptable map of the Webway, dating from before the time of the Horus Heresy. A psionically-negative item, its "pages" were the stretched pieces of the skin of an Untouchable who had once been a Sister of Silence, attached to lightweight golden frames. The veins, capillaries, and arteries on the "pages" could reconfigure themselves to show the reader his desired destination within the Webway, being constantly fed oxygen by an intricate regulated pump embedded in the book’s spine.

Using both the anti-psyker and adaptable-mapping properties of the Atlas, Czevak was able to escape the Black Library through the Webway. He subsequently used the book to traverse the galaxy through the Webway in order to outsmart his Harlequin pursuers, and also in a quest to thwart Ahriman and his minions. Another likely objective was locating his former associate and secret love interest Joaqhuine Desdemondra, still held captive by the Thousand Sons. Ahriman in turn was fervently looking for Czevak, craving his knowledge.

ReappearanceEdit

Czevak spent a number of standard years wandering the galaxy through the Webway making plans against Ahriman, consumed by guilt over the deaths caused by his torture-induced revelations.

In the meantime Klute, who respected and admired Czevak, was remorseful over failing to prevent his capture. He spent two standard decades after Czevak's disappearance over Cadia on a mission to find him, a secret objective his superiors and even his retinue was unaware of. He had assembled a highly unconventional cadre of Acolytes and based on the Rogue Trader starship Malescaythe, he made frequent extended forays to the Eye of Terror. In his search for Czevak, Klute was looking for artefacts that would allow him access to the Webway.

Sometime during the first few decades of the 42nd Millennium Klute and his team found, and transported to the Malescaythe, a Webway portal called the Lost Fornical of Urien-Myrdyss. To everyone's surprise the portal soon activated, and a visitor who turned out to be Czevak stepped through, pursued by an ichneuplasm which he eventually managed to vanquish. Following the initial surprise and a heated argument, his associates accepted Klute's assertion: this was indeed the infamous, irascible Czevak, known among Imperial, xenos, and Chaotic operatives galaxy-wide and long presumed dead or worse, having become Ahriman's plaything. Czevak for his part looked almost four centuries younger, and had lost none of his opinionated ways and cutting sarcasm.

Klute and associates were now ready to return to the fold of the Imperium. Yet Czevak had no illusions: the only thing the Imperium and Inquisitors of any persuasion wanted was his knowledge and the conclusions he had drawn from it. In the eyes of the Imperial authorities he was considered too compromised, and either a Heretic or a Traitor.

Before this argument was resolved, the first part of a typically ingenious and cunning long-term plot by the Thousand Sons to recapture Czevak -- or rather, to take the Atlas Infernal -- started to play out, in the form of an encounter with a Khornate Berserker vessel.

MammoshadEdit

A complicated series of clues to Korban Xarchos' whereabouts followed, involving a captured Cogitator from the defeated Khornate vessel, and the avoidance of a trap set by Xarchos to ensnare Czevak. He and the retinue reasoned that Xarchos was attempting to replicate daemonic psychic vivisection as practiced millennia before by the Daecropsicum, a long-destroyed Dark Mechanicus cult, while simultaneously carrying out a campaign of carnage and death in order to provide the necessary psychic power to summon a suitable daemonic subject. Czevak and company eventually acquired a piece of a vivisected daemon that was the only successful result of the Daecropsicum's experiments: the psychic fragment of the ancient and extremely powerful Tzeentchian Lord of Change Mammoshad, whose greed and ambition had been bound into a coin.

Czevak proceeded to interrogate the daemonic fragment about Xarchos and Ahriman's whereabouts and plans. It was an unceasing multi-day session without respite, during which the increasingly unhinged Czevak mercilessly tormented the daemon. Mammoshad in turn was taking advantage of the raging meme-virus within the Inquisitor's mind to apply equal torture on Czevak through denials and obvious misinformation.

Eventually Czevak found out that the Thousand Sons were planning to reassemble and re-release Mammoshad as their servant, spreading havoc in the galaxy, and helping Ahriman breach the Webway again. The event was to take place on Melmoth's World, a Nurglite planet in the Eye of Terror, which became Czevak's next intended destination.

By now Klute had had enough. He had realised that his hero, friend and mentor had been drawn into an elaborate trap by the master deceiver Ahriman and his minions, who knew the workings of Czevak's brilliant, hyperactive mind all too well. Klute secretly ordered a change of course towards Cadia, and specifically the nearby top secret Inquisitorial fortress at Nemesis Tessera. Another heated argument with Czevak ensued when the latter found out. The naivete and brilliance of both men became apparent. Finally Czevak agreed to return to the Inquisition and the Imperium, but insisted on a secret approach to the base, and entry through a "back door." Klute and his retinue reluctantly accepted.

Nemesis TesseraEdit

Czevak never intended to return to the stagnant Imperium. Drawing on his tremendous conviction about stopping Ahriman and doing his part to better the galaxy, he continued his ongoing campaign of counterbluff, counterintelligence and oneupmanship. He therefore turned the wishes of his only remaining friends (Klute and company) to his advantage.

Using the Lost Fornical and the Atlas Infernal Czevak lead his associates to an Inquisition Reliquary Chamber kilometres below the sub-surface base. One of the relics was a functioning, unguarded Webway portal, a major lapse in the millennia-old base's security, which Czevak had taken advantage of before. Thanks to the portal the team from the Malescaythe entered the fortress undetected.

Czevak instructed the astonished and fearful team (which included witches, daemonhosts and Renegades under Inquisition kill-orders, all now trespassing within a heavily defended Inquisition fortress) to start looking for a specific item. It wasn't long before the team was detected, and was assaulted by Grey Knights and Inquisitorial Storm Troopers. Czevak saved the day by brandishing the sought-after relic, which was a long-abandoned heretical experiment: a cloned Pariah embryo in a bell-jar stasis casket, a virtually unheard of (outside of the Culexus Temple) Omega Minus null entity. The severely mauled remnants of the team then returned to the Malescaythe, which had been detected and was simultaneously engaged in battle with an Inquisition flotilla. Sustaining heavy damage, the starship managed to extract itself by making a desperate, blind Warp jump, during which Czevak came close to being slain by the mysteriously appearing and equally inexplicably disappearing Harlequins.

Melmoth's WorldEdit

Czevak's manipulation and his willful endangerment of his associates' lives in order to get the Pariah embryo resulted in a further violent confrontation with Klute. Czevak finally apologized and acknowledged his friends' loyalty and concerns, while Klute realized that they were indeed on their own, as the Imperium would not tolerate loyal but unconventional warriors with an independent streak, questionable associates, and a knowledge of deep and frightening secrets.

With the Malescaythe and its crew hiding in an inaccessible and unstable area of the Eye of Terror called the Scorpento Maestrale, Czevak used the Lost Fornical Webway portal to arrive at Melmoth's World. Knowingly walking into the trap Xarchos and Ahriman had so painstakingly laid for him, he realised that the whole planet was to be used as a birthing cradle for Mammoshad, and the Thousand Sons had forced the slothful Nurglite population to mine a Warp mineral that would accelerate the Greater Daemon's birth. He was arrested and taken to Xarchos, who being a shapeshifter and telepath, was being "worn" remotely by Ahriman. He had no need of Czevak any longer except as a sacrifice to Mammoshad, who had expressly demanded Czevak's life. Ahriman knew he could get all the information he wanted from the Atlas Infernal. Mind-forcing Czevak to reveal where he was hiding the book, Ahriman was actually fooled by the Inquisitor into handling the Pariah casket instead, which immediately started draining his psychic essence. The wounded Ahriman hastily retreated from Xarchos' body, who was then destroyed by exposure to the Pariah.

Mammoshad was next. Just as it was hatching back into existence from a colossal daemonic egg, Czevak threw the Pariah embryo at it, stunting its rebirth and ultimately banishing it back to the Warp. After a skirmish with the ubiquitous Harlequins who were also on the planet, Czevak returned to the Malescaythe, which was again in trouble because it had been detected by Ahriman's fleet. In an extremely dangerous and ingenious play typical of Czevak, he had the ship elude its pursuers by entering a huge Webway portal on the surface of the area's highly unusual cryo star.

While the Malescaythe was drydocked in the Webway for repairs, the Harlequins again appeared. However this time Czevak was expecting them. Knowing they wanted both the Atlas and his life, he tricked them into approaching and then opened the book. The volume's potent psychic null field killed the troupe's Shadowseer and injured the rest of the Harlequins, who disappeared to save themselves. Through the dying Shadowseer Czevak sent a message to the Black Council: he was going to find and stop Ahriman on his own terms, and not as an Eldar puppet.

At PresentEdit

In the early 42nd Millennium, Czevak, Klute, and his retinue carried on with their self-appointed crusade against the enemies of Mankind, and especially Ahriman and his plans. Although now hunted by almost every faction in the galaxy, Czevak has remarkable freedom of action thanks to the Atlas Infernal, his vast knowledge and intelligence, and his able and loyal associates. His multi-decade sojourn in various parts of the Webway had a naturally rejuvenating effect on him, and he currently looks about 400 years younger than his actual chronological age -- he is almost 440 standard years old, but with great amounts of newly acquired energy. He is still willingly carrying the meme-virus, refusing treatment. He still uses the previously implanted cybernetic Mind Impulse Socket to interface with all kinds of machinery. When in combat Czevak favours a pilfered Harlequin overcoat, whose holographic cloaking abilities, embedded wrist-mounted monofilament wire weapon, and unnatural extradimensional storage capacity he often puts to good use. Inherently dangerous, independent, and unpredictable, he is a worthy opponent of the enemies of the Emperor and of Mankind who should not be underestimated.

Base of OperationsEdit

  • The Malescaythe -- The Malescaythe is a Rogue Trader starship owned and commanded by Captain Reinette Torres of the Torres-Bouchier Mercantile Sovereignty which is based on the world of Zyracuse. Its full crew complement consists of former Imperial Navy recruits and Adeptus Mechanicus Tech-priests, serfs, Menials and Servitors. The vessel's security detail is provided by detachments of the Penitent Savlar Chem Dogs Regiment of the Imperial Guard. The ship's armament and weaponry is typical of starships of its class and function. The ship contains a specially constructed "Archeodeck" full of stasis cases and other vaults housing a large collection of relics, some holy to the Imperium, most others illegal, alien, heretical, or Chaotic. These include a functioning Webway portal known as the Lost Fornical of Urien-Myrdyss. The vessel also contains a specially fortified chapel. For the past few decades the Malescaythe has made extensive forays into the Eye of Terror. While in the Eye, the ship always runs with an active Gellar Field, regardless of whether or not it is actually in the Warp, and is additionally fortified with numerous psychic wards against daemonic intrusions. Despite the prolonged missions in the Eye, the vessel has never been psychically breached, and her crew has remained generally untainted. Recently, the Malescaythe withstood extensive damage and was eventually repaired within the Webway after Czevak identified a large portal into the Labyrinthine Dimension with the assistance of the Atlas Infernal.

Retinue and AlliesEdit

  • Raimus Klute (former and current member) - Previously Czevak's chirurgeon, Klute became Czevak's Acolyte and Interrogator for 2 standard decades. He was responsible for Infecting Czevak with the meme-virus. Klute became a full Ordo Xenos Inquisitor after Czevak's abduction by the Harlequinade. After Czevak's return from the first visit to the Black Library, he was tasked with his protection and security, but failed to prevent Ahriman from capturing his charge. He then set off on a decades-long mission to find him, partly because of feelings of guilt and partly because he apparently worships Czevak, a sentiment frequently taken advantage of by the latter. He kept the mission to find Czevak secret from all, including his retinue and associates. Upon Czevak's reappearance he tried to unsuccessfully convince and manipulate him into returning to the fold of the Imperium. However, following the events on Nemesis Tessera Klute realised the futility of such action and offered himself and his retinue up to the service of Czevak and his plans, while Czevak finally appreciated his friendship and declared him an equal. Klute is currently about 70 standard years old, but has undergone rejuvenat treatments that make him appear much younger. Like Czevak he likes to avoid violence, but favours a modified Cadian-pattern Kasr close-combat shotgun, sometimes loading it with sanctified silver/salt rounds when operating in the Eye of Terror.
  • Joaqhuine Desdemondra (former member, MIA) - Desdemondra is an immortal human mutant known as a Reanimate. She is also known as Saint Joaqhuine or The Idolatress. She was canonised by the Ecclesiarchy as "Saint Joaqhuine the Renascent, Living Saint of the Imperial Creed". However, she is feared by some within the Imperium as a monstrous abomination, for she is an eternally young woman whose consciousness remains intact upon death while her body can automatically reconstitute and reanimate. She is an ex-member of the vampiric, blood-drinking Imperial Death Cult called the Path Incarnadine, and she once served as Czevak's bodyguard, assassin and henchwoman. Czevak was additionally interested in her because of her reanimation ability, but eventually ended up secretly falling in love with her. She was later captured by Ahriman and tortured in order to blackmail Czevak into revealing his knowledge of the Webway and the Black Library. She is probably still a captive of Ahriman and Czevak will not rest until he has found her once more.
  • Saul Torqhuil (current member, ex-Klute entourage) - Saul Torqhuil is a Techmarine of the Relictors, a Space Marine Chapter declared Excommunicate Traitoris after it turned Radical in its fight against the Forces of Chaos. Like other members of his Chapter, he was on a personal quest for knowledge of Chaotic methods or artefacts that could be used against Chaos, carrying his individual crusade into the Archenemy's territory, the Eye of Terror. There, his path crossed with Klute and after initial hostilities they forged a truce, eventually becoming partners. Torqhuil often sports numerous Mechadendrites and other cybernetic attachments common amongst Techmarines. Torqhuil maintains the Archeodeck and the Gellar Field on the Malescaythe. He is currently recuperating after being severely wounded at Nemesis Tessera.
  • Reinette Torres (current associate, originally hired by Klute) - Reinette Torres is a Rogue Trader whose family's fortune and power had greatly diminished from its height. She had once been the Captain of an Imperial Navy Frigate. She is the capable, no-nonsense Master and owner of the Tradeship Malescaythe, the current de facto base for Czevak and his warband. Hired by Klute under false pretenses, she (and the rest of his retinue) only found out they were actually looking for Czevak upon the latter's reappearance. She as well as her starship may have been proscribed by the Imperium following the events at Nemesis Tessera and probably both are actively sought by the Inquisition. Since Malescaythe's Navigator is incapacitated, she usually has to rely on Epiphani and her gifts (see below) for Warp navigation. However she is often jealous of Epiphani's youth and beauty and upset at her ship-threatening navigational recklessness.
  • Epiphani Mallerstang (current member, ex-Klute entourage) - Epiphani is a prognostic Human Warpseer. She is the illegitimate (and unacknowledged) daughter of a mystic/sorcerer who was a former Klute Acolyte, and of a noblewoman who is the current head of a powerful Navigator family among the Navis Nobilite. Young and beautiful, she has a heightened sense of fashion, and her seer gifts allow her to often dress for the (future) occasion. This fact acts as a signal to the retinue for what the near future may hold, as she sometimes dresses for battle. Her psychic talent has often helped in locating needed items and places. Epiphani also acts as a quasi-Navigator for the Malescaythe. Being an Unsanctioned psyker, she has no inhibitors and is not soul-bound to the Emperor -- she is therefore a constant danger as well as the subject of an Ordo Hereticus kill-order in 12 Sectors. As she is blind like many seers, she relies on Father for realsight. Ephiphani is addicted to Spook, a potent illegal psychoactive drug. She has an affinity for the Daemonhost Hessian, and being somewhat immature, loves to bait Captain Torres who is insecure about her age and looks. She is currently recovering from the effects of exposure to the Pariah embryo at Nemesis Tessera.
  • Hessian (current member, ex-Klute entourage) - Hessian is an extremely powerful and old Daemonhost known as "The Anathame" or "The Abominate". The daemon is imprisoned in the body of a handsome youth who was previously a vassal (and boy-lover) of Epiphani's father, and it is held in check by arcane under-skin wards grafted into the Daemonhost's body by the latter. Hessian has an affinity for Epiphani, probably due to her Warp-taint, but also because of the host body's previous relationship to her father and their shared experiences. Hessian can be reactivated at will by Klute, who can calibrate the necessary incantations into releasing the host's daemonic essence either fully or partially. Hessian is usually kept in Malescaythe's fortified and warded chapel. Hessian is currently recuperating following a severe mauling by the Grey Knights and exposure to the Pariah embryo at Nemesis Tessera.
  • Father (current member, ex-Klute entourage) - Father is a Servoskull drone constructed around the skull of Epiphani's father. Father maintains a mind-link with her, and its bionic eyes act as her realsight conduit. Father has a vellum-scroll printer installed in its mouth, and some Cogitator ability.
  • Phemus Melchior (former member) - Melchior is an Arch-Magos of the Adeptus Mechanicus, previously assigned to the Xenarite Diagnostic Coven on Vulcraetia. Melchior was a member of Czevak's entourage before he first entered the Black Library. It was Melchior who designed Czevak's cryogenic suspension suit and the Mind Impulse Socket that was a part of his bionics. Melchior accompanied Czevak during his first visit to Craftworld Iyanden, and witnessed the Harlequins' performance. His current status, whereabouts or affiliation remains unknown.
  • Ferdan Kieras (former member, KIA) - Kieras was Czevak's Interrogator and pilot after his return from his first visit to the Black Library. He was previously Klute's Acolyte and pilot. Kieras was killed in a crash-landing during action against Chaos forces over Cadia.
  • Cynthis-Six (former member) - Cynthis-Six was a female Calculus Logi (administrative assistant) of the Adeptus Mechanicus who had been heavily augmented by cybernetics. She had been a member of Czevak's entourage before his first visit to the Black Library. Her current status, whereabouts or affiliation remains unknown.
  • Kressida (former member) - Kressida is a Sister Hospitaller of the Order of the Eternal Candle. Kressida was a member of Czevak's entourage before his first visit to the Black Library. Her current status, whereabouts or affiliation remains unknown.
  • Carodoq (supporter and ally) - Cardinal of the Ecclesiarchy, lead a "citizen's crusade" in the Spurcia Sub-sector to have Czevak declared a Living Saint upon the former's return from his first visit to the Black Library. Czevak considers him "misguided" and a "false friend". His current status, whereabouts or affiliation remains unknown.
  • Una Belphoebe (opportunistic ally, active) - Belphoebe is an Eldar, an Iyanden-born female Pathfinder and the leader of a contingent of Eldar Rangers. She is a seeker and purchaser of Spirit Stones and other Eldar relics, and makes frequent visits to the Eye of Terror, where she trades in archeotech with the Traitor Legions. Una serves as Czevak's occasional trading/bartering counterpart amongst the Eldar and she helped him during a Xarchos-orchestrated ambush at the Arach-Cyn Archeomarket.
  • Iqbraesil (opportunistic ally, active) - Iqbraesil is an Eldar and the Senior Farseer of the declining Iyanden Craftworld. He is a member of the Black Council that governs the Black Library. Iqbraesil was Czevak's most important Eldar contact, for it was Iqbraesil who first invited Czevak to visit the Iyanden Craftworld to, among other things, watch a Harlequin performance. Iqbraesil secretly helped Czevak escape the Black Library after his imprisonment there, as the Farseer was convinced of Czevak's future usefulness to the Eldar.
  • Adara-Ke (opportunistic ally, deceased) - Adara-Ke was Iqbraesil's daughter, and she served as a Guardian-Scribe with 3 standard centuries of service in the Black Library. Adara-Ke served as Czevak's attendant during his 2nd sojourn and imprisonment within the Library. She helped Czevak escape the secret Craftworld and the Webway at her father's request, by giving him the Atlas Infernal from the Black Library's stores of ancient artefacts. To shield herself and her father from suspicion from the Black Council over the escape, she committed suicide by opening the book, whose null psychic energy killed her.

Notable OpponentsEdit

  • Mammoshad (Daemon, banished) - Also known as the "King of Kings, Enslaver of the Craven Worlds and Keeper of the Vault Abyssal," Mammoshad is a Lord of Change, a Greater Daemon of Tzeentch. Millenia before, Mammoshad was subjected to psychic vivisection by a Dark Mechanicus cult called the Daecropsicum, and its pieces were scattered throughout the galactic East. Following Korban Xarchos' manipulations, one piece of the daemon came into Czevak's possession, only to psychologically and mentally torment him. Recently the daemon was the object of a long-running reactivation project by Korban Xarchos and the Thousand Sons. Mammoshad was banished back into the Warp during its rebirth by Czevak through the use of the Pariah embryo.
  • Valentin Malchankov (Inquisitor, Ordo Hereticus, active) - Malchankov was a member of the reactionary Monodominant Puritan faction of the Inquisition, and an implacable opponent of Czevak, whom he considers a dangerous Heretic and Radical "schismatist." Following a particularly heated argument with Czevak, he publicly vowed to hunt him down. His assets include the Black Ship Divine Thunder.
  • Pavlac (Imperial, Witch Hunter) - Pavlac is a Witch Hunter and probably an Inquisitor of the Ordo Hereticus. He actively campaigned against Czevak and any who support him, condemning other Inquisitors and whole worlds. His status after Czevak's return from the Black Library is unknown.
  • Ahriman (Chaos Space Marine, psyker, active) - Ahriman is the mightiest Chaos Sorcerer of the Thousand Sons Traitor Legion after its daemon Primarch Magnus himself, and perhaps the greatest mortal Sorcerer in the galaxy. He is dedicated to the pursuit of a perfect understanding of Chaos and his patron, the Chaos God Tzeentch. For this reason, Ahriman desires nothing more in existence than to enter the Black Library and learn its myriad secrets. Thanks to information gleaned from torturing Czevak, Ahriman managed to once breach the Webway, but was repelled by the Eldar. Ahriman was injured by exposure to the Pariah embryo at Melmoth's World. Despite his wounds, Ahriman will never stop in his relentless pursuit of Czevak and all he knows.
  • Korban Xarchos (Chaos Space Marine, psyker, deceased) - Xarchos was a Chaos Sorcerer of the Thousand Sons Traitor Legion, and the Equerry and apprentice to Ahriman. Xarchos commanded the Traitor Frigate Rubrician. A shapeshifter, he was slain after being used by Ahriman as a shield against Czevak's Pariah embryo.
  • Eldrad Ulthran (Eldar Farseer, psyker, missing in action) - The strongest living psyker and likely the most powerful member of the leaderless Eldar race was one of the Farseers who most vocally called for Czevak's death while he was in Eldar custody. However, by the time the Black Council met for the second time to discuss Czevak's fate, Ulthran was away fighting against the 13th of Abaddon the Despoiler's Black Crusades. Had Ulthran been present to judge Czevak, Iqbraesil might not have been able to sway the Council in Czevak's favour against the strength of Ulthran's influence. Ulthran has since gone missing; he was last seen locked in single psychic combat with an avatar of the Chaos God Slaanesh itself, and he is presumed either dead or discorporated, his soul adrift in the warp. He is thus, for the time being, in no position to oppose Czevak.
  • Vespasi-Hann (Eldar psyker - deceased) - Vespasi-Hann was a Harlequin Shadowseer. Part of the Harlequinade assigned to monitor Czevak's activities after he first travelled to Iyanden, because the Inquisitor was considered by the Eldar to be an "asset" to be used in their undeclared war against Ahriman and the Thousand Sons. Czevak used the Atlas Infernal to kill the Shadowseer during a confrontation within the Webway.
  • Various Harlequins - A Great Harlequin, a Death Jester and others (active). Injured by Czevak's brandishing of the Atlas Infernal during the encounter that resulted in the death of Vespasi-Hann, they retreated from recapturing or killing him.
  • The Black Council (Eldar political body, active) - This Eldar advisory body of Farseers drawn from every major Craftworld has in all likeness condemned Czevak to death as a danger to the Eldar race, and has additionally tasked the Harlequins (who act as the Black Council's enforcers) with retrieving the Atlas Infernal. However there is dissent in the Council and not all members seek Czevak's death (in particular, Iqbraesil of Iyanden is Czevak's strongest supporter on the Council).

SourcesEdit

  • Codex: Craftworld Eldar (3rd Edition)
  • Codex: Eldar (3rd Edition)
  • Codex: Eye of Terror (3rd Edition)
  • Atlas Infernal (Novel) by Rob Sanders

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