They were suspected to be Successors of the Salamanders or another Successor Chapter thereof but records were unclear on exactly which Chapter is their progenitor. This suspicion that the Salamanders Gene-Stock was used led to the Salamanders tutoring and training the Burning Lords as part of the Chapter's conception.
The Chapter was almost utterly destroyed during the Indomitus Crusade as a result of a conflict with the Daemon Claws, but the new Chapter Master Osiris Horti has - with the help of his new 1st Captain - helped to rebuild his Chapter and thus save them from extinction.
After their conception, they spent the better part of ten years fighting in the Segmentum Ultima under the direction of the Salamanders. During this time, they adopted many of the combat doctrines, attitudes and cultural practices of the Salamanders. It was also during this time that the Burning Lords adopted the dragon as their current iconography, seeing it as a representation of dominance and authority. Their previous iconography is not known.
Following the completion of their tutelage under the Salamanders, they were then sent off to the region which they were supposed to protect within the Segmentum Pacificus, which includes a number of sectors around and including the Sertarian Sector.
They spent much of their early years establishing relationships with various key planets as well as the worlds in which they intended to recruit from. Since a number of sectors and sub-sectors they were created to patrol were decaying to the point where Imperial Rule was breaking down, they quelled a number of rebellions on a number of worlds and thus reestablishing Imperial Rule. Many of these worlds are worlds that the Burning Lords try to visit relatively regularly ensure they do not stray again.
One of the Chapter's most notable conflicts was the suppression of an empire of four worlds within a single system that broke away from the Imperium in an attempt to form their own empire. The conflict took years but was eventually quelled.
During the Indomitus Crusade, the Chapter suffered extreme, near-complete losses against the Daemon Claws and the Daemonic Horde that followed in their wake. It is unknown what exactly went on in the lost system after the destruction of ninety percent of the Chapter, but it is assumed that the Daemon Claws and the Daemonic Horde receded into the Warp in order to emerge elsewhere onto other battlefields.
The Astartes of the 9th Company and a handful of other Burning Lords Astartes who survived the rest of their Chapter - who numbered just under a hundred - sought to rebuild their Chapter, awaiting the arrival yet more Primaris Marines. During this process, Osiris Horti - a Primaris Marine and former Lieutenant of the Chapter - took up the mantle of Chapter Master in spite of many voices for Karlarti Journ, Captain of the 9th Company before the Chapter's near annihilation, to take the position. In spite of the negative cries, the decision was ultimately accepted.
The 9th Company was separated out to form the basis of the four Battle Companies and four Reserve Companies, with the the rest of the ranks slowly being filled by Primaris Marines. On top of this, Karlarti Journ became the new 1st Captain of the Chapter. While the rebuilding of the Chapter was underway, the Chapter was given a world within the Setarian Sector - Orbius Secundus - as their Homeworld upon which they constructed their new Fortress Monastery Astoraah.
As the numbers of the Chapter swelled and their ranks were starting to be filled once more, the Chapter once again resumed their duties with a full stride. They have began assisting in the existing conflicts of the Sertarian Sector, but refuses to commit any large force to the reclamation of worlds from the Forces of Chaos. However, if the Daemon Claws were to ever make an appearance again anywhere near the Sertarian Sector, then Chapter Master Osiris - with the staunch support of his now 1st Captain - would surely muster a might crusade against them with the intent to utterly destroy them.
Quatarian Rebelion [ 896.M41 -- 899.M41 ]
The Quatarian Rebelion was a war that occurred when a collection of planets that were both technologically advanced and were an empire before they were brought into the fold of the Imperium rose up against the Imperium, declaring themselves an independent empire once again. Given that the Chapter was not close enough for a rapid response, the Imperium completely lost control of the system.
The Burning Lords massed seven Companies on the outskirts of the system and began their assault. Over the next seventeen months, the Chapter fought a protracted war on the two out planets which, along with the interplanetary defense system, served as a gateway to the inner planets. It was during this part of the war that Cander Blorstein - a Librarian of the Burning Lords - suffered from The Dragon's Wrath in an event that was later labelled as the Blorstein Heresy as a result of the events that followed being blamed on Chaos corruption.
Once Blorstein began suffering from The Dragon's Wrath, he turned on his fellow Astartes and the Imperial soldiers fighting with them. With uncontrolled and misdirected Warp Energy flowing from his fingertips during his rage, he killed more than a hundred guardsmen, two dozen support staff and weapons crews, and seventeen Astartes, one of whom was the Captain of 4th Company. Eventually he was brought down by Bolter fire, with his remains burned and then cast into space. To the rest of the Imperium, Blorstein was labelled a heretic who was corrupted by Chaos in order to hide the dangers of The Dragon's Wrath within the Chapter. After this incident, the Chapter began the practice of killing all Librarians who showed symptoms of being afflicted for fear of such events happening again.
Two months after the Blorstein Heresy, the first two worlds had been won back for the Imperium and the interplanetary defenses had been disabled or destroyed. Given that the interior worlds relied relatively heavily on the defenses the outer planets afforded them, the interior planets surrendered within three months of war breaking out on their surfaces.
By the end of the war when Imperial rule had been restored, the Burning Lords has lost the lives of just over a hundred and fifty Astartes including Blorstein and those he had killed. What remained of the Chapter's 9th Company stayed behind to ensure Imperial rule took hold.
Klutter Klan WAAAGH! Conflict [ 934.M41 -- 936.M41 ]
In an unrecorded sector of space, the Burning Lords engaged the Klutter Klan WAAAGH! as it rampaged across parts of the sector. Arriving in time to make sure that the WAAAGH! did not spread too far, the Chapter spread its forces, halted the Orks' advance, and began pushing them back. Given that the Chapter had deployed six Companies and accompanied by auxiliary forces as well as the fact that the WAAAGH! had yet to reach truly dangerous proportions, this was not overly challenging. Some say the deployment of such force was wildly unnecessary and put it down to Ducarias' bullish nature, but Ducarias himself shrugged off such things, believing the redundancy of his deployment strategy guaranteed the WAAAGH! would not reach beyond the sector.
While battling the Warboss Kaztur in 935.M41, Ducarias suffered significant injuries, his life being saved buy a squad of Assault Terminators of the 1st Company. He was escorted from the battlefield while Kaztur excaped, he too suffering significant injuries. The WAAAGH! was destroyed almost a year later after Kaztur was caught fleeing, forced to ground on a nearby planet, and then destroyed from orbit.
The Indomitus Crusade [ 999.M41 -- 107.M42 ]
In 999.M41, the Chapter participated in the liberation of a number of worlds within the Sertarian Sector that had been claimed by Chaos in the wake of the 13th Black Crusade. During their re-conquests, they were granted a cadre of Primaris Marines who bore their Gene-Seed. Shortly after this addition to their ranks and the beginning of the conquest of yet another system of worlds, the emergence of the Daemon Claws immediately halted their advance across the system. Unprepared for such an onslaught, especially for the horde of Daemons that followed in the wake of the Daemon Claws' arrival, the Chapter was eventually reduced to a single cadre of Astartes that included some of Primaris Marines. They all survived their Chapter Master who had been slain on the surface of the systems third planet. This cadre was forced to retreat to a fortress in a mountain range that was easier for them to defend.
Here was where Astaphore the Blind and the Daemon horde with an unidentified Lord of Change at its head hit their hardest. It was also at this time that a number of Astara Militarum regiments arrived in orbit above the planet after finally translating into the system to what they assumed would be a relatively successful war effort on the part of the Burning Lords. After assessing the situation on the planet from orbit, the Fleet Commander - Darius Ausana - declared the Chapter lost in spite of the fact that - unbeknownst to him - the Chapter was still active in small numbers at the fortress in the mountains and turned his fleet around to leave.
The Burning Lords did not have the resources or the numbers to hold out indefinitely let alone long enough for the next re-conquest fleet to arrive. As a result of this, all the remaining Astartes of the Chapter with the exception of what remained of the 9th Company and the Primaris Marines assigned to them were entirely wiped out not long after the departure of Commander Ausana's fleet.
The Chapter does not specialise in any particular area or style of warfare, instead having focused on the perfection of the tactics and combat doctrines outlined in the Codex Astartes. It is unclear why the Chapter chose to do this, with some arguing as to whether or not it came down to a choice, but the Chapter focuses on perfection regardless of the speculation. It has been noted, however, that the Chapter tends to prefer the use of weapons such as Flamers and Meltaguns, thus lending themselves more to combat at relatively close range.
The training that members of the Burning Lords is not unique when compared to any other relatively Codex-Complaint Chapter. However, emphasis is put on the training pertaining to close combat, and the use of Flamer and Melta Weapons.
The psykers of the Burning Lords were trained just like they would be in any other Codex-Compliant Chapter, but once the psyker had achieved the rank of Codicier, they often received extra training which allowed them to develop abilities specific to Pyromancy. With the only Librarians now in service of the Chapter being a handful of Primaris Librarians attached to the 9th Company, the Chapter-specific training pertaining to Pyromancy has been lost.
Due to the close relationship they formed with the Salamanders during their conception as well as the fact that the gene-stock is suspected to have been taken from the Salamanders, the two Chapters share common ideas and attitudes. Chivalry is one of their keenest characteristics, with this particular characteristic guiding the building of relationships with a number of worlds in a number of sectors. In the Chapter's recent years, they took their views on strength and honour - especially in battle - to extremes, with these characteristics boarding on some of the sorts of zealotry typically displayed on the fields of battle by the Black Templars.
In terms of rituals such as those of the Promethean Cult, the Burning Lords never formed any of their own and tend to refrain from using those of the Salamanders (seeing no reason to adopt such rituals since they have no inherent significance for them).
Their gene-seed is incredibly stable with no trace of Chaos Taint ever being detected. The most notable Gene-Seed mutation they had, which is also part of what gives rise to the suspicion of the Salamanders being the progenitors, is that they have a relatively high resistance to various types of radiation. They do not share the dark skin reminiscent of the Salamanders, but Astartes of the Burning Lords are known to survive relatively briefly in irradiated zones that would otherwise be considered lethal to other Astartes. It has been noted that they are not completely immune to radiation, but rather can withstand more radiation for longer.
It has also been noted that another mutation of the Gene-Seed they possessed is the absence of the Belcher's Gland in approximately three percent of all Initiates. Given that they only welcomes a small cadre of Primaris Marines into their ranks, it is unclear if this quirk was also present in the Chapter's Primaris Brothers.
The Dragon's Wrath
In many of the conflicts the Burning Lords have participated in during their later years (with the first appearance being somewhere between 900.M41 and 915.M41), a relatively small percentage of their more novice Astartes have succumbed to what has been labelled as The Dragon's Wrath: A psychotic condition that afflicts them during particularly heated battles. Nobody is sure where this comes from, with no conclusive evidence to show that it has anything to do with their Gene-Seed thus leaving it a completely unexplained phenomenon.
The condition varies in its effects depending on the Astartes in afflicts, but it generally characterised itself with hyper-aggression manifesting as extreme violence. The affliction seemed to inexplicably disappear again after the Astartes spends a (variable) amount of time in a comatose state (usually drug induced since the Astartes in not in a frame of mind to voluntarily do so).
Those who experience the affliction several times were often killed in ways that do not draw suspicion, meaning they were sent on suicide missions or simply left of dead. In extreme cases, the afflicted Astartes are killed by there own Battle Brothers who only made attempts to cover up their actions afterwards. The first exception to this rule tended to be those who survive long enough to inexplicably become immune to the affliction and thus are spared from the execution (which tends to be roughly fifty years after becoming a fully-fledged initiate). The second exception was any member of the Librarius, who tend to be killed the first time they are afflicted. It's also generally thought that a Librarian could not survive through more than one affliction event without being driven made or corrupted by opportunistic forces of Chaos. The practice of killing all afflicted Librarians required an extensive amount of covering up since such action is generally frowned upon.
Story telling passed through the ranks of the mortal soldiers who witnessed it as well as the civilian population of many worlds have embellished the affliction, claiming such things as the afflicted Astartes were able to breath fire (with all such myths most likely being derived from members of the Librarius succumbing to the affliction). This raised eyebrows inside the Inquisition, but they were never more than stories and myths, meaning there were no repercussions for the Burning Lords ever throughout their history.
The Chapter was and is Codex-Compliant, meaning that is it for all intents and purposed identical to any other Fleet-Based, Codex-Compliant Chapter. However, it does have a few minor differences that set it apart from many Chapters.
The 9th Company was an oddity, with the structure more in line with that of a 1st Company with Veterans without Terminator Armour. They often serve as Praetorian Guard of sorts made up of Veteran Astartes rather than serving as a Reserve Company, guarding key personnel, assets, and territories of the Chapter. They essentially acted as a fifth Battle Company with a relatively specific purpose. Since the Chapter's near destruction and reformation during and after the Indomitus Crusade, this purpose for the 9th Company was abandoned and it has since been reformed as a typical Reserve Company. Some of the veterans who were alive before the Indomitus Crusade that still serve in the Chapter repeatedly call for the reinstatement of this purpose, though Chapter Master Osiris refuses to do so until the Chapter's strength has been restored.
Because of The Dragon's Wrath, the Chapter is often cautious about entombing their Astartes in Dreadnoughts and thus tend to have fewer Dreadnoughts in their ranks. It's uncertain whether or not the affliction affects Dreadnoughts since an instance of it occurring has never been recorded combined with having no conclusive evidence that it doesn't affect those entombed within a Dreadnought. However, given that those entombed within Dreadnoughts tend to be veterans of the Chapter, many have come to believe that they have the inexplicable immunity that all other veterans possess. As a result of relatively reduced numbers, the Chapter often holds an even higher level of reverence for those entombed within them compared with other Chapters.
The Chapter was initially Fleet-Based with no official Homeworld. After their near destruction, they were awarded the planet Orbius Secundus in the Sertarian Sector - Death World deep within the Sector's safest zone of CSS-002: The Capitol Sub-Sector. The world is now heavily guarded as a result and the Chapter started the construction of their Fortress Monastery soon after their arrival.
Fortress Monastery Astoraah
The Chapter's new Fortress Monastery - Astoraah - was completed relatively quickly. It does not boast anything beyond the typical in its internal design, but the main entrance is guarded buy two colossal stone dragons carved out of Black Marble and decorated with bronze-coloured metals and red jewels.
As per the practice of many other fleet-based Chapters, they recruited from a number of different worlds. They preferred to recruit from Death Worlds to the point where the Chapter would often go out of their way to visit Death Worlds to find their recruits. Beyond this, there is nothing noteworthy about how they go about the recruitment process when compared with other fleet-based Chapters. After their settlement on Orbius Secundus, their Homeworld became their sole recruiting ground.
Notable Burning Lords Astartes
The first Chapter Master of the Burning Lords, Ducarias was a master of military tactics when it comes to close quarters combat, though he tended to deffer to the advice of others in most other areas of combat. He was, however, known to be a bit bullish, trying to press his warriors' advantage in close combat but putting them at severe risk in the process.
During his relatively brief tenure as Chapter Master, Ducarias suffered extensive injuries to the lower left quarter of his body during an encounter with the Warlord of the Klutter Klan WAAAGH! in 935.M41, meaning that he had a bionic left leg, bionic enhancements implanted into his lower abdomen, and a bionic left hand and forearm.
He died along with almost all of his Chapter following the Conflict with the Daemon Claws during the Indomitus Crusade.
Cander was a Codicier in the Burning Lords Chapter. Though he was a relative novice of the Chapter and thus at the highest risk of suffering from The Dragon's Wrath, he was not placed under any more supervision since the Chapter had yet to learn how dangerous a psyker who had been afflicted was. He was also noted as being a powerful pyromancer and part of the Chapter's strong tradition of recruiting gifted pyromancers into their ranks.
He became the first Librarian to ever suffer the affliction, but he was not immediately killed. The rest of the Chapter initially believing he could be subdued and put into a drug-induced coma so that he could recover from the affliction. During his brief period of affliction, his battle brothers were unable to subdue him, thus putting him in a situation where he took the lives of seventeen Astartes before he was eventually killed.
As a result of these events, he became the main reason why Librarians who suffer the affliction are always immediately killed during the first time they suffer The Dragon's Wrath. He was also nicknamed as The First Heretic due to the fact that the Chapter blamed his actions on the corruption of Chaos to hide the true nature of the incident and thus avoid the suspicion of the Inquisition.
Notable Chapter Fleet Elements
- Battle Barge Ignatius -- The flagship of the Chapter and a powerful Battle Barge, the Ignatius was a true weapon of war and worthy beacon of any fleet-based Chapter. It was always highly guarded and is home to only the Chapter Master and the veterans of the 1st Company. The remaining quarters were occupied by the ship's crew as well as all the auxiliaries that are designated to specifically accompany the Chapter Master and the 1st Company. It was destroyed during the Indomitus Crusade.
- Strike Cruiser Magellus -- Arguably one of the most important elements of the Burning Lords fleet, it acted at the primary guard vessel for the Battle Barge Ignatius as well as a great weapon of war beside the aforementioned vessel. It was destroyed during the Indomitus Crusade.