|Scythes of the Emperor|
"For the ghosts of Sotha!"; "For the Emperor and for Sotha!" (only used when fighting the Tyranids); "For the Emperor... We are his Scythes!"
25th Founding (Ca. 500-600.M41)
Black and Yellow
The Scythes of the Emperor are a Codex Astartes-compliant, Loyalist Chapter of Space Marines who are a Successor Chapter of the Ultramarines of the 25th Founding. The Scythes of the Emperor, along with their allies, the Lamenters Chapter, were virtually destroyed during the invasion of the Imperium of Man by the Tyranids' Hive Fleet Kraken. The remnants of the Chapter stand on the edge of oblivion. The few Battle-Brothers that remain have sworn to spend their lives seeking out and annihilating the remaining Tyranid splinter forces within the Ultima Segmentum and beyond even as they seek new recruits to replenish the Chapter's shattered ranks.
The Scythes of the Emperor (sometimes referred to as the Emperor's Scythes) was designated Space Marine Chapter 874, and was Founded approximately in the years 500-600.M41, making them one of the Imperium's newest brotherhoods of Space Marines. Their gene-seed is speculated to have been drawn from the the Ultramarines. The Scythes established a Fortress-Monastery upon their homeworld of Sotha. From this base of operations, near the region of space known as the Damocles Gulf in the Segmentum Ultima, the Chapter took upon themselves the duty of policing and safeguarding many of the nearby mining and manufactorum settlements.
The Scythes' first Chapter Master was Thorcyra, an excellent strategic leader. He led the Scythes for several centuries until his death during the desperate flight of his Chapter from the jaws of Hive Fleet Kraken on their homeworld of Sotha. As the Chapter grew in strength, they expanded their policing actions around their homeworld of Sotha in the Eastern Fringes of the galaxy. After eradicating human and alien pirates from the nearby Imperial mining colonies, the Scythes moved on to counter several Ork migrations in the lower Segmentums of the Imperium.
The Scythes served during the Damocles Gulf Crusade, and played a vital role in the capture of the world of Sy'l'kell from the Tau Empire. However, the Crusade ultimately stalled and withdrew when it was learned that the newly encountered Tyranids were heading for the Realm of Ultramar, the home of the Ultramarines.
- The Corinth Crusade (698.M41-705.M41) - The Scythes of the Emperor participated in the Corinth Crusade that fought under the command of the famous Chapter Master Marneus Calgar alongside elements of the Ultramarines, the Angels of Absolution, the Lamenters, Silver Skulls and Marines Errant Chapters, supported by 50 Imperial Guard regiments against the Ork WAAAGH! Skargor that emerged out of the Greenskins' pocket empire of Charadon. The Crusade drove WAAAGH! Skargor back to the world of Corinth and ultimately Warlord Skargor was slain. This Crusade pushed back the later invasion of Imperial space by the Charadon Orks' WAAAGH! Argluk by 30 standard years.
- Damocles Gulf Crusade (742.M41) - It was in the years following the Damocles Gulf Crusade against the Tau in M41.742, that the Scythes of the Emperor would come to the forefront of warfare within the Eastern Fringe. The Scythes led the first landing into Tau territory, the world of Sy'l'Kell. After establishing the landing zone, the Imperial Guard Regiment of the 17th Brimlock Dragoons heavy support element moved on to expand the Imperial foothold. The Dragoons were nearly destroyed by a heavily mechanised Tau counter assault against the expanding Imperial position. The timely intervention of the Scythes, accompanied by the 4th Imperial Storm Troopers, broke through the Tau lines, averting a near-disaster. After claiming Sy'l'Kell, the Crusade moved across the Damocles Gulf. After a brutal first fleet engagement with the Tau, the Imperials landed on the major Tau world of Dal'yth Prime. This led to months of bitter fighting, during which the Scythes (alongside the Ultramarines and Iron Hands Chapters) were constantly engaged against Tau Heavy Jump infantry units, during an effort to claim the Tau city of Gel'Bryn, intended to be used as a major starport for the forces of the Crusade. The Astartes maintained constant night patrols against Tau infiltrators during the months-long fighting. With news of the encroaching Hive Fleet Behemoth bearing down upon the Eastern Fringe and the stalemate between the two sides, the Crusade was forced to withdraw in order to bring full Imperial resources to bear against this new xenos threat. Despite requests from some in the Crusade leadership to perform an Exterminatus upon the Tau planet before the Imperial withdrawal, the Astartes and Imperial Guard commanders refused. An unusual mutual respect between both sides had been forged during the conflict.
- The Verdeworlds Campaign (865.M41) - A Black Templars Crusade joins forces with the Blood Angels and Scythes of the Emperor to cleanse the Verdeworlds of their Eldar settlers.
- Aftermath of the Badab War (912.M41) - After the conclusion of the Badab War, the Scythes of the Emperor were charged by the Inquisition with watching over the penitent Lamenters Chapter of Astartes who were performing a penitent Crusade for their role in the rebellion, to make sure there were no further signs of heresy. Through this long watch, both Chapters became firm allies.
- Second Tyrannic War-The Fall of Sotha (992.M41) - Over 300 years after the assault of Hive Fleet Behemoth upon the Eastern Fringes of the galaxy, the Imperial Tarot began to tell of foul portents ten years before the arrival of Hive Fleet Kraken. Among the planets overwhelmed by the locust-tide of the Tyranid Hive Fleet Kraken was the Chapter's homeworld of Sotha. Even for a well-defended Chapter planet, there was little hope against such vast numbers of xenos and their remorseless hunger. With devastating losses to the Chapter fleet, the Scythes were driven back to their fortress-monastery on their homeworld of Sotha, which quickly came under siege by the Tyranids. Thousands of Tyranid creatures landed on the planet, and the Scythes, led by Chapter Master Thorcyra, prepared to make their stand at their fortress-monastery in order to give as much time as possible for the population of Sotha to evacuate. Before the planet and fortress-monastery were completely overrun, the Scythes managed a breakout from the doomed world, falling back to regroup in the nearby Miral System. Sotha, along with so many other planets in the path of the inexorable advance of Hive Fleet Kraken, was reduced to the barren state of an asteroid by the Tyranid swarms. Two hundred Space Marines from the Chapter broke through the Tyranid assault. With much of the region overwhelmed by the Tyranids, there was nowhere for these brave Astartes to go beyond the claws of the Kraken.
- The Battle of Miral (992.M41) - The last of the Scythes eventually landed on the Death World of Miral. Somewhere on the surface of this planet, a huge rocky outcrop called the Giant's Coffin rose from the jungle. The pursuing Tyranid fleet caught up and encircled them, leaving the Scythes trapped and surrounded on the jungle planet. The surviving forces of the Scythes prepared to make this their final stronghold. The Giant's Coffin was a tremendous natural citadel whose steep cliffs would slow the invaders and the rocky promontories would provide excellent firing positions for heavy weapons. As the Tyranids mounted their forces for a final push to wipe out the remaining Sycthes, Chapter Master Thorcyra ordered all of the remaining Battle-Brothers to withdraw from the world so as to avoid the complete extinction of their Chapter. In his last official act, Master Thorcyra passed the artefact known as the Emperor's Scythe (the Chapter Master's symbol of office) to Captain Thrasius of the 3rdCompany, the only Captain of the Chapter still alive. As the rest of the surviving Scythes escaped the doomed planet in Thunderhawk gunships, Thorcyra and the remains of the Veteran 1st Company took up the position as the last line of defence. Leadership of the nearly destroyed Chapter passed to the new Chapter Master Thrasius. The solemn ceremony of investiture was conducted on the bridge of the Honour's Might (the Chapter's only remaining starship, an almost-crippled Battle-Barge with severely depleted resources). Thrasius then ordered the starship renamed The Heart of Sotha in memory of the Scythes of the Emperor's homeworld and the terrible sacrifices made there. The fate of the planet is unknown, although at the end of the Tyranid onslaught, little more than a company of the Scythes of the Emperor remained. The remnants of the Chapter now seek out and annihilate the remaining Tyranid splinter forces within the Ultima Segmentum and beyond even as they seek new recruits to replenish the Chapter's shattered ranks.
- Rebirth (970.999.M41) - The Scythes of the Emperor finally emerge from the dark shadow of Hive Fleet Kraken and announce that their Chapter will be born anew.
The few surviving Space Marines of the Scythes of the Emperor Chapter now navigate through space on board their last starship and mobile fortress-monastery, the battle barge called The Heart of Sotha. The Chapter is but a shadow of its former glory, but they are a hard and elite fighting force, and can be found fighting anywhere against the Tyranids within the Ultima Segmentum. The Chapter was forced to break with its past tradition and now operates with only 2 full companies. The survivors of Sotha were amalgamated to form one company referred to only as the "Battle Company," while all new recruits to the Chapter which the Scythes actively seek from any suitable worlds they pass (often in fact those worlds that they have saved from destruction by Tyranid splinter Hive Fleets), are now inducted into the Chapter's other company, the Scout Company.
During the Scythes' retreat from Hive Fleet Kraken, Chapter Master Thrasius instigated tactics of minutely detailed withdrawals and a constant fighting retreat, viewing every engagement without a casualty as a victory despite the Chapter constantly falling back from world to world ahead of the Kraken's advance. Thrasius realised that the Chapter had to recruit new Space Marine Aspirants in order for the Chapter to survive. On each planet where the Scythes fought they would gather up those defenders with the greatest potential, especially those young enough to become Astartes, and rescue them while the rest of the world fought and died. In this way hundreds, if not thousands, of potential recruits have been gathered along with many others who could serve as Serfs to the Chapter, replacing those lost on their former homeworld of Sotha.
Before the near-destruction of the Chapter during the Second Tyrannic War, the Scythes drew Neophytes from many different worlds (Sotha, Miral, Narro, and Radnar), all worlds now fallen to Hive Fleet Kraken. These new Scouts are the future of the Chapter. They demonstrate the Chapter's new diversity, the new embryonic culture it is developing, and its old traditions are inevitably passing. For many Scythes Veterans, these Neophytes personify everything that they detest about the changes their new Chapter Master is forcing upon them and their disdain for those changes, alongside their resentment at having to train the new recruits instead of fighting as one of the Veterans of the remaining Battle Company. This has fostered a bitterness towards the Scout Marines of the Chapter that many Veterans are unable to completely conceal. With the news of the Kraken's defeat, Chapter Master Thrasius and many of his lieutenants disappeared, departing The Heart of Sotha abruptly and returning just as suddenly. What Thrasius did while away is unknown, but upon his return over 300 Neophytes had already had their gene-seed organs implanted and begun the Chapter's training regimen. These recruits were those who had been gathered from the many planets on which the Scythes had fought, but the source of the gene-seed was another matter. Rumours persist in the Chapter that perhaps the gene-seed had been secretly rescued from Sotha before the Tyranids attacked. Others believe that the gene-seed might have been stolen, pillaged from other Chapters in similar dire straits during the Tyranid invasion. Still others hold that perhaps the gene-seed was bargained for, or that it was the payment by the Inquisition's Ordo Xenos for seconding over 40 of the surviving Scythes to the Deathwatch. But the truth of the matter remains unknown.
- Salvation Teams - Rumours abound of Space Marines wearing the insignia of the Scythes still alive inside the Tyranid Hive Ships of Kraken splinter Hive Fleets; stories of Imperial Navy boarding parties of armsmen surrounded, nearly destroyed, before being saved by such warriors who then disappeared back into the depths of those hideous living vessels; stories of Tyranid Bio-ships convulsing and collapsing in the midst of battle, though untouched by any external force. The rumours of scattered remnants of the Scythes fighting the Tyranids has lead to the creation of "Salvation Teams"; small, autonomous units of Scythes given the task of traversing the battlegrounds of the Eastern Fringe in the wake of Hive Fleet Kraken and running to ground every rumour, every indication of Veteran Scythes still alive somewhere in the wake of the Tyranid assault. In reality, very few live Astartes are ever found, more often than not the "Salvation Teams" are merely reduced to salvage teams recovering the non-biological artefacts such as Power Armour and Bolters, and not just from the slain Astartes of the Scythes but from many, many other Chapters as well. Still, desperate times call for desperate measures and Thrasius has ordered all such recovered material to be taken for the Scythes' use. Nevertheless, Thrasius' strategy appears to be solid and succeeding, as the Chapter's Scout Marines eventually rise to become full Battle-Brothers on an accelerated timetable and lead their own "Salvation Teams" while the Scythes gain invaluable experience in boarding actions against the Tyranids. It is possible that the Scythes of the Emperor now know even more about this foul xenos species and how to defeat them than even the Ultramarines.
When the Scythes of the Emperor first came upon Hive Fleet Kraken, they had little idea of the horror that was approaching them, and so when the first Hive Ship appeared in their system, they attacked almost blind to the risks they were facing. They conducted desperate boarding actions to destroy as many of the ships as they could. One of the first boarding actions by the Scythes against Hive Fleet Kraken was led by Sergeant Remas, which was successful, but resulted in the death of all of the boarding team members save for Remas and another Battle-Brother named Tobias.
It can be assumed that the Thunderhawk Sergeant Remas used to escape the Hive Ship sustained some damage on its escape, as the lone Scythe did not rejoin his brothers but was instead found much later; unconscious and wounded on board his gunship by the Ultramarines Chapter. Remas later told his tale to Chaplain Ortan Cassius on what had transpired with the new alien menace, sharing all his intelligence on the threat of the Tyranids. During the Conclave of Hera on Macragge which had been called by the Ultramarines to consider the first change to their Chapter structure since the Second Founding in light of the danger presented by the Tyranids, Chaplain Cassius would later call forth Sergeant Remas to testify. He gave key evidence on what he had seen and learned in battle against the Tyranids. The conclave continued for many solar months, until all those Ultramarines who wished to speak on the matter hade been heard. Eventually, the Ultramarines Chapter Master Marneus Calgar decreed that he had heard all that he needed and retired to his chambers atop the Ultramarines' mighty Fortress of Hera to ponder the matter. On the morning of the fortieth day, Lord Calgar emerged and declared before his assembled warriors that the elite Tyrannic War Veterans would indeed become part of the Ultramarines' military structure, and after their first successful trial on the world of Espandor, all recognised their usefulness.
In addition, other Battle-Brothers of the Scythes of the Emperor have been reported as being rescued by various other Chapters performing boarding actions against Hive Ships from Hive Fleet Kraken. Usually the Scythes' survivors are cocooned and commonly found in Terminator Armour, with an unusually high proportion of the captured Astartes being Librarians. Why this is the case is unknown, but perhaps they possessed some means of preserving themselves against being killed or consumed, or else the Hive Mind regarded them as worthy of preservation for further study. It is not known if any of these lost brothers have been reunited with the remnants of the Scythes.
Chapter Combat Doctrine
The Scythes have been forced to change their tactics due to the limited resources and manpower the Chapter now possesses. The Chapter generally organises small, mobile strike forces, which are capable of carrying out hit-and-run missions and are used to relying on only themselves during a fight. It is also not uncommon to see Chapter Master Thrasius take to the field of battle, due partly to the limited resources of his Chapter, but also because he is deeply driven to prove himself worthy of a command he does not feel he earned and to bring honor and glory to the Chapter once more. Due to devastating losses suffered at the hands of Hive Fleet Kraken during the withdrawal from Sotha, the Scythes of the Emperor have almost no suits of Terminator Armour left, nor any armoured vehicles larger than Rhinos or their variants. The Chapter tends to fight exclusively against the Tyranids (though they will of course engage any enemy of the Imperium of Man as any Space Marine Chapter would) and hate them more than any other force in the galaxy. Fully two-thirds of the Chapter are Second Tyrannic War veterans (the rest having been recruited following the destruction of Sotha), and the Chapter is also known to have killed more Tyranids per man than any other fighting force in the galaxy, including the Ultramarines. The Scythes of the Emperor are often the first Space Marines to respond to any distress call regarding an attack by Tyranids made within the Ultima Segmentum.
Chapter Master Thrasius, like his counterpart from the Crimson Fists, Chapter Master Pedro Kantor, is determined above all else to keep his Chapter alive. The legend of the tenacious survival of the Crimson Fists Chapter after the fall of their fortress-monastery on Rynn's World to an unexpected disaster and the Orks is well known amongst the Adeptus Astartes. That Chapter's struggle for survival details how hard the Crimson Fists' Master had to struggle to prevent his Battle-Brothers from launching a reactionary self-destructive crusade after the severe losses taken during the Ork attack on their homeworld. The Crimson Fists had been reduced to 300 Battle-Brothers and still managed to hold onto their homeworld. The Scythes now number only 100 Veteran Astartes and have lost their homeworld, so for them that struggle is all the greater. An Astartes exists only to fight in the Emperor's name; it is their only reason for existence. To tell one that he may not fight when the enemies of the Imperium are within striking distance is a far greater punishment than death. To many of the surviving Second Tyrannic War Veterans' of the Scythes of the Emperor, however, Thrasius' attempted reconstitution of their Chapter is a betrayal of the Chapter's very spirit, its legacy. It is consigning the survivors to a tepid, meek existence, unable to fight to their fullest. Many of the Scythes' Veterans believe Thrasius would have the Chapter die slowly and painfully, forgoing their duties, sapping their courage and their honour in order to simply maintain a further, yet ultimately empty existence. They fear the eventual loss of the Scythes' original spirit simply to produce larger numbers of Space Marines who are Scythes of the Emperor only in name. This feeling among so many of the Chapter's Veterans had produced a real political rift within the Scythes that Thrasius will soon be required to deal with if the Chapter is to remain an effective foe of the Imperium's myriad enemies.
Notable Scythes of the Emperor
- Chapter Master Thorcyra - Thorcyra was the first Chapter Master of the Scythes of the Emperor. He, along with the remnants of the Scythes' entire 1st Company, were wiped out to a man during the Battle of Miral by the Tyranids of Hive Fleet Kraken.
- Chapter Master Thrasius - Thrasius is the current Chapter Master of the Scythes of the Emperor after the recent death of his predecessor, Thorcyra, on the Death World of Miral at the hands of the Tyranids of Hive Fleet Kraken.
- Chief Librarian Tormal - Tormal is the Scythes' only remaining senior officer and Librarian, who has been with the Chapter for almost a standard century.
- Chaplain Segas - Segas was the first Chaplain of the Scythes of the Emperor. Following his death, his remains were interred upon the reliquary world of Egottha.
- Reclusiarch Hornidal - Hornidal, a Veteran of the First Tyrannic War, served as the Reclusiarch (senior Chaplain) of the Scythes before the fall of Sotha. While on Crusade to liberate the reliquary world of Egottha in 990.M41, he received the general recall message for the entirety of the Chapter to return to their Chapter homeworld. Concerned by the implications of such grave news, he urged the captain and crew of the vessel Xenophon to push as hard as they could as they made their way to Sotha, for fear of arriving too late. Unfortunately, they encountered a small vanguard of Hive Fleet Kraken and were boarded by the Tyranids. Despite his skilled leadership in the defence of the vessel, the Xenophon was doomed. Before they self-destructed the doomed voidship, Hornidal managed to record a warning message to be relayed by distress beacon, warning other vessels of the impending danger to Sotha.
- Chaplain Demetrios - Demetrios was a Chaplain of the Scythes before the fall of Sotha and was a subordinate of Reclusiarch Hornidal. He was a part of the aborted Crusade originally sent to liberate the reliquary world of Egottha in 990.M41. When Hornidal received the general recall message for the entirety of the Chapter to return to their Chapter homeworld, he ordered the destroyer Xenophon to make all haste. While en route to Sotha, they encountered a small vanguard of Hive Fleet Kraken and were boarded by the Tyranids. Demetrios called the Scythes to battle, under instruction from the Reclusiarch, and witnessed Sergeant Certes' final battle-oaths. He was last seen leading Certes's squad in a desperate counter-offensive and was presumably killed.
- Forge Master Sebastion - Sebastion serves as Master of the Forge (senior-most Techmarine) of the Scythes of the Emperor after the fall of Sotha. He is charged with the training of prospective Techmarines as the Chapter is slowly rebuilt. He had identified Neophyte Narro, a member of Sergeant Tiresias' 21st Salvation Team, as a potential candidate, recognising his natural affinity for practical problem solving and had begun his early training in the mysteries of the Omnissiah before his untimely death aboard a Tyranid Hive Ship. He recently accepted Neophyte Bokari for an apprenticeship as a potential Techmarine, after the Neophyte continuously delivered to him considerable amounts of both Power Armour and parts of precious Terminator Armour recovered from various Tyranid Hive Fleet vessels. Sebastion was particularly focused on the restoration of damaged or lost Terminator Armour, for after the fall of Sotha, the Chapter only had three such suits in its possession, and the recent acquisition of a fourth partial suit was considered a major step forwards in creating a future Codex-approved Terminator Squad.
- Captain Romonos - Romonos serves as the current commander of the "Battle Company", the Chapter's sole remaining Veteran combat formation following the battles with Hive Fleet Kraken.
- Captain Theodosios - Theodosios served as the commander of the Scythes of the Emperor's 5th Company before the fall of Sotha to Hive Fleet Kraken. Departing with the entirety of his company, Theodosis made for the Eastern Fringe to investigate rumours of rebellion and uprising. Unbeknownst to the 5th Company, this was the precursor to the invasion of Hive Fleet Kraken. Captain Theodosios attempted to send word back to Sotha to warn them, but his Astropathic message was disrupted by unknown means (presumably by the effects of the Shadow in the Warp, the psychic disruption projected by an encroaching Hive Fleet's Hive Mind before an imminent attack). This prompted the general recall of the entirety of the Scythes back to their homeworld. When they encountered the first Tyranid Hive Ship, Theodosios charged Commander Cassios with leading a diversionary attack so that his own force could flank the enemy and destroy it. The mission ended in utter failure and the entire 5th Company was wiped out.
- Commander Cassios - Cassios was the commander of the Scythes' lost 5th Company which disappeared in its entirety before Sotha fell to the Kraken. The commander was discovered by Brother-Sergeant Tiresias and his Salvation Team in a Sus-an Membrane-induced stasis aboard a dead Tyranid Hive Ship two standard years after the Salvation Teams were initially formed and dispatched.
- Lieutenant Hadrios - Seconded to Chapter Master Thrasius as his chief aide.
- Sergeant Marek Angeloi - Marek Angeloi was a Sergeant of the Scythes around the time that Sotha fell to the predations of Hive Fleet Kraken. He formerly served as Tiresias' superior at the time Chapter Master Thrasius returned from planning for the future survival of the Scythes after the Chapter's near-destruction. Both Sergeant Angeloi and Tiresias were openly critical of the Chapter Master's new direction for the Chapter in its pursuit of survival. Their voices of dissent rallied much support from the senior surviving Veterans of the Chapter. Without any prior notification, Chapter Master Thrasius sent the upstart Sergeant and 40 other rebellious Space Marines from the Chapter (roughly 1/3 of the surviving Scythes of the Emperor) for secondment with the Deathwatch to assist their Kill-teams in fighting the Tyranid menace. Angeloi eventually attempted to counter the dissent to Chapter Master Thrasius' orders among the Veteran Marines of the Chapter who desire to see the Chapter attack the Tyranids even if it means the Scythes' ultimate extinction.
- Sergeant Certes - Certes was a Sergeant of the Scythes before the fall of Sotha and was one of three noncommissioned officers under the command of Reclusiarch Hornidal. He was part of the aborted Crusade originally sent to liberate the reliquary world of Egottha in 990.M41. When Hornidal received the general recall message for the entirety of the Chapter to return to their Chapter homeworld, he ordered the destroyer Xenophon to make all haste. While en route to Sotha, they encountered a small vanguard of Hive Fleet Kraken and were boarded by the Tyranids. Certes was presumably killed early on, as Chaplain Demetrios was later seen leading Certes' squad in a desperate counter-offensive against the vile xenos.
- Sergeant Edios - Edios was a Sergeant of the Scythes before the fall of Sotha and was one of three noncommissioned officers under the command of Reclusiarch Hornidal. He was a part of the aborted Crusade originally sent to liberate the reliquary world of Egottha in 990.M41. When Hornidal received the general recall message for the entirety of the Chapter to return to their Chapter homeworld, he ordered the destroyer Xenophon to make all haste. While en route to Sotha, they encountered a small vanguard of Hive Fleet Kraken and were boarded by the Tyranids. Edios was killed while defending their ship's tech-crews in the burning bow section, though his body was recovered by his surviving battle-brothers.
- Sergeant Hekaton - Hekaton was a Sergeant of the Scythes before the fall of Sotha and was one of three noncommissioned officers under the command of Reclusiarch Hornidal. He was a part of the aborted crusade originally sent to liberate the reliquary world of Egottha in 990.M41. When Hornidal received the general recall message for the entirety of the Chapter to return to their Chapter homeworld, he ordered the destroyer Xenophon to make all haste. While en route to Sotha, they encountered a small vanguard of the Hive Fleet and were boarded by the Tyranids. He was presumably killed while leading his squad against the invading xenos.
- Sergeant Remas - When a Tyranid Hive Ship first appeared in the Sotha System without warning, the Scythes of the Emperor attacked almost blind to the risks they were facing. Sergeant Remas led one of the first known boarding actions by the Scythes against Hive Fleet Kraken, which was successful, but resulted in the death of all of the boarding team members, with the exception of Remas and another Battle-Brother named Tobias. Their Thunderhawk gunship sustained heavy damage while affecting their escape, and the pair of surviving Scythes were found much later, unconscious and severely wounded, by the Ultramarines Chapter. When the Ultramarines found Remas' drifting gunship, the unconscious Sergeant was clutching a shredded Scythes' Chapter standard so tightly that they had to wait until he woke before he would release it. Remas later told his tale to Chaplain Ortan Cassius on what had transpired with the new alien menace, sharing all his intelligence on the threat of the Tyranids. During the Conclave of Hera on Macragge, Chaplain Cassius would later call forth Sergeant Remas to testify, in which he gave key evidence from which agreement would eventually be reached by the Ultramarines to create the elite Tyrannic War Veterans.
- Sergeant Tiresias - Tiresias is a Second Tyrannic War Veteran who survived the attacks on both Sotha and Miral. Tiresias was assigned to the 21st Salvation Team -- a small unit consisting of himself and four Neophytes. Sergeant Tiresias has led this team for two standard years, running to ground any rumours of surviving Scythes that may still be aboard one of the Tyranids' dead Hive Ships along the Eastern Fringe. He was mortally wounded while investigating an unknown class of Hive Ship. His body and gene-seed was later recovered by the 121st Salvation Team.
- Sergeant Quintos - Quintos was the leader of the Scythes' 121st Salvation Team after the fall of Sotha. He had previously served as a Neophyte member of the 21th Salvation Team under the command of Sergeant Tiresias, but was sorely wounded when he lost an arm and part of his face to the Tyranids while searching for Scythe survivors aboard a Hive Ship. As result of these injuries he received a bionic replacement. Quintos and the 121th Salvation Team later recovered the gene-seed of Commander Cassios and the body and gene-seed of Sergeant Tiresias, who had been mortally wounded during a mission to destroy an unknown class of Hive Ship.
- Neophyte Pasan - Pasan was a Neophyte who served as a member of the 21th Salvation Team under the command of Sergeant Tiresias. As one of the last of his generation to be born on Sotha, Tiresias favoured training Pasan over his squad-mates for a future leadership position. During the exploration of an unknown Tyranid Hive Ship, it was Pasan who devised the plan to destroy the xenos ship. Pasan died within the "heart chamber" of the Tyranid vessel when he was overwhelmed by a swarm of Gaunts.
- Neophyte Hwygir - Hwygir was a Neophyte who served as a member of the 21th Salvation Team under the command of Sergeant Tiresias, acting as the squad's Heavy Weapons specialist and carrying a Heavy Bolter. He hailed from the Death World of Miral. When he became a fully-fledged Space Marine he had chosen to rename himself Culmonios. He died aboard a Tyranid Hive Ship after being fatally shot in the back of the head by a Tyranid biomorph.
- Neophyte Narro - Narro was a Neophyte who served as a member of the 21th Salvation Team under the command of Sergeant Tiresias. He hailed from the Hive World of Radnar, coming from a privileged background. Narro had been recognised by Forge Master Sebastion as a potential candidate as a future Techmarine, recognised for his natural affinity for practical problem solving, and had begun his early training in the mysteries of the Omnissiah before his untimely death aboard a Tyranid Hive Ship.
- Neophyte Vitellos - Vitellos was a Neophyte who served as a member of the 21th Salvation Team under the command of Sergeant Tiresias. Like Neophyte Narro, he too, hailed from the Hive World of Radnar, having been reluctantly pressed into service when his world had to defend themselves against the threat of Hive Fleet Kraken. Sergeant Tiresias was not overly fond of Vitellios, whom he felt had an inflated ego and an attitude of smug superiority. Nonetheless, Tiresias grudgingly admitted that Vitellos' background as a warrior made him a natural-born leader. Vitellos died aboard a Tyranid Hive Ship when he was crushed to death by one of the vessel's numerous organic door-valve mouths.
- Vosok Dall - Vosok Dall was a Battle-Brother of the Scythes of the Emperor who turned Renegade and swore allegiance to the Blood God Khorne sometime after the fall of Sotha. Now a Chaos Space Marine, Dall was a warrior who killed in the name of a blood-drenched god who revelled in murder and battle. He was both strong and capable, with a hunger for glory and martial honour unmatched even by those who still fought for the Imperium. Vosok was killed on New Badab, homeworld of the Renegade Red Corsairs, by Warsmith Honsou of the Iron Warriors, during Honsou's participation in a tournament known as the Skull Harvest, called by the Red Corsairs' Chaos Lord, Huron Blackheart.
- Heart of Cronus (formerly The Heart of Sotha and before that, Honour's Might) (Battle-Barge) - The Scythes of the Emperor's only remaining Chapter fleet starship is now named the Heart of Cronus. It is currently serving as their mobile base of operations since the destruction of their homeworld of Sotha. In order to facilitate the training of prospective Astartes, the hangar was rebuilt into a training ground for newly recruited Neophytes, which includes ingenious traps, xenoforms and combat Servitors programmed with Tyranid attack patterns, in order to survive fighting against those vile xenos.
- Xenophon (Hunter-class Destroyer) - The Xenophon served in the Scythes of the Emperor's fleet shortly before the destruction of Sotha by Hive Fleet Kraken.
The Scythes of the Emperor primarily wear yellow Power Armour. This includes -- the power pack, torso and groin armour. The helmet, pauldrons, greaves, gauntlets and leg armour are black in colour. The white-coloured squad specialty symbol -- (Tactical, Assault, Devastator, or Veteran) is located on the right shoulder pad. A black-coloured Roman numeral is stenciled in the centre of the squad specialty symbol, indicating squad number. Unusually, the Scythes of the Emperor display their company markings through Aquilas on their breastplates. Veteran status is denoted by a yellow left knee adorned with a black skull.
The Scythes of the Emperor's Chapter badge is a crossed (or single) yellow (or black) coloured scythe on a field of black.
The exact origins of the Scythes of the Emperor have suddenly taken an interesting twist, as mentioned in the Horus Heresy novel, Unremembered Empire by Dan Abnett, who sheds some light by adding some historical information for the Scythes, including when Sotha was discovered -- over a century before the Horus Heresy by Roboute Guilliman and his Ultramarines Legion during the Great Crusade. The following excerpts shed some light on the Scythe's origins:
"A dedicated company of Ultramarines, the 199th, was assigned to Sotha as permanent protection, and the world was given the classification 'restricted'. The astartes took pride in their duty and later adopted a symbol upon their pauldron related to those they protected, the scythe wielding agriculturalists."
A ritual of clearing the area about the research site on Mount Pharos for over a century was the precept for the use of the Scythe symbol: "This simple, rural tradition, dating back over a hundred years, had given rise to the protection company’s choice of icon."
What this exactly means is not totally made clear, as the Scythes might be descended from one of the original Ultramarines' companies. How this is possible has yet to be explained, as the Scythes -- officially -- weren't founded until the 25th Founding sometime between 500-600's.M41. Hopefully in the near future, Games Workshop and the Black Library will shed some more light on the true origins of this Chapter.
- Advanced Space Crusade Rulebook (1st Edition), pp. 4, 16, 29, 38, 42, 45, 48
- Codex: Space Marines (7th Edition) (Digital Edition), pg. 111
- Codex: Space Marines (6th Edition), pp. 18-19, 33, 53
- Codex: Tyranids (4th Edition), pg. 14
- How to Paint Space Marines, pg. 88 (colour scheme, listed under Codex-compliant Chapters)
- Imperial Armour Volume Nine - The Badab War - Part One, pg. 77
- Index Astartes IV - "The Badab War", pg. 55
- White Dwarf 306 (UK), "Purge the Alien - Ultramarines Tyrannic War Veterans", by Graham McNeill, pp. 54-55
- White Dwarf 264 (UK), "Index Xenos: The Kroot", pg. 96
- White Dwarf 218 (UK), "The Coming of the Great Devourer", pg. 80
- White Dwarf 198 (US), "Honour and Glory: Veteran Regiments", pp. 34-37
- White Dwarf 48 (FA), Scenario for Epic 40,000 by W. Kinrade
- Legends of the Space Marines (Anthology), "Orphans of the Kraken", by Richard Williams
- Hammer and Bolter 21, "The Shadow of the Beast", by Laurie Goulding
- Heroes of the Space Marines (Anthology), "The Skull Harvest", by Graham McNeill
- Space Marines: Angels of Death, "Reclamation" by Laurie Goulding
- Last Watch (Advent Short Story Series) by Laurie Goulding