- "Your suffering is at it's end! We are here to unveil the Truth to you! Come, relinquish your flesh prisons and embrace the salvation that is our blades! [insane laugher]"
- —Khaane the Slaughterpriest, prior to a siege.
The Host of the Truthbringer is a Warband of Chaos Space Marines derived from the Word Bearers Legion. Originally known as the Ruin's Aeon Chapter, they are an organization that has been led by Azunar since the late Great Crusade.
Each of them are dedicated absolutely to giving oneself over, body and soul, to the all-consuming powers of the Warp. They have been consumed by the ideal that the Materium is an illusion one must break free of, and so they crusade that all may share in their psychosis.
Their sole desire is to see the Immaterium overtake reality and transform the Galaxy into a endlessly boiling crucible of madness, mutation and chaos. They are crusaders and daemon-summoners supreme, and their unhinged fanaticism drives them from world to world on a tidal wave of mutation, madness and warp-spawned horror.
The Great Crusade
The Astartes now known as the dreaded Host were once a Chapter known as the Ruin's Aeon, named after an ancient Colchisian prophecy of a age of doom, the End Times. This name was all too fitting, for the Ruin's Aeon drew it's recruits from the most fanatical and violent members of Colchis' civilization, and seemed more interested in burning worlds than building them. One of the first to be inducted into the newborn Chapter was a youth named Azun'Kar, He Who is Sought, who, through many battles, would come to be both First Chaplain and Captain of the Aeon's Second Company. Unknown to all, however, Azun'Karar was a psyker, and mentally ill. His sermons would always be of fire and brimstone, and reek of self-loathing and a desire to purify himself and others through violent acts of faith.
After the burning of Monarchia, things would swiftly go downhill for the already violent Chapter. Azun'Karar swiftly earned a vision of the Dark Gods of Chaos and, even before the Pilgrimage had reached it's end, he already knew of the Dark Powers. Filled with a desire to purify himself in the Warp, he seeded cults throughout the fleet, and through them, detonated the Gellar Field Generators of every ship in the Crusade Fleet, while all of them were in Warp Transit. Instantly, the Ruin's Aeon vanished into the Immaterium, and were thus consumed by it.
When the Ruin's Aeon emerged, they were forever changed. Where once they numbered 1,000 Space Marines, they now numbered only 450, and those that were still alive had been driven irreparably insane. The mortal crews of those ships had horrifically melded with the Ships themselves, and those that did were either devoured by Daemons or transformed into Chaos Spawn. The Ruin's Aeon had forsaken it's original name, and taken on a new one. The Host of the Truthbringer, Disciples of Ruin, were born.
Where they walked, death and destruction would follow, and those that did not die were brutally enslaved and exposed to the corrupting energies of the Warp. The Host was entirely merciless in their prosecution of war, cavorting and reveling in madness and terror. Even when they were defeated and driven back towards the Eye, they were unfazed, for they had earned a glimpse of the Face of Ruin, and they would march into self-destruction unafraid if need be.
Through ancient daemonic pacts their leader and prophet, Azunar, earned the aid of the Forge of Souls when he designed a great Daemon Engine and mobile Fortress-Monastery: the Sanctified Desolation. This would serve as their mobile homeworld and base of operations, and would be the heart of their Crusade in the millennia to come.
The Host of the Truthbringer is ever more fanatical as time goes by. The worlds they conquer are transformed into depraved and maddened kingdoms, where the population is enslaved to the ruinous faith of Chaos Undivided and forced into back-breaking labor to erect ever more shrines, temples and places of worship. The crusaders do not wage the Long War to overthrow the Emperor or to claim vengeance for past grudges, although those things would be achieved as a byproduct of their true goal. The true purpose of their Crusade is to capsize Realspace in a localized swathe of annihilation and madness, to unleash the energies of the Warp upon reality and purify the Galaxy with those energies, that all may receive the cruel enlightenment they experienced in the Warp. Only then can Mankind be redeemed.
Aeon of Ruin
The death of Cadia and the creation of the Great Rift plunged the Galaxy into a new age of insanity and Warp corruption, as space tore itself apart and thousands of worlds were lost to Daemons. Seeing as the Great Rift engulfed the supermassive Black Hole at the heart of the Galaxy, the Host is now more galvanized than ever before, for now their purpose is clear. Across countless worlds they commit a vast and labyrinthine ritual, involving death and destruction beyond measure, all in sacrifice not to any Chaos God, but to a new, rising power: the black hole itself. They worship it as an unthinking avatar of pure, absolute Chaos: Ruin personified, and they hope to sacrifice enough souls and flood enough chaotic energies into the abyss to awaken such a Power. If they succeed, and the Galaxy's heart becomes sentient in a similar vein to Anthelion, it would mean the end of everything: the entire Galaxy and everything inside it swallowed up by a singularity of infinite madness. And this is precisely what the Host wants, for the Materium, or as they call it Falsespace, is a lie, and here is the final solution on how to end it. Soon, all will know the Truth, and all will be free to embrace the divine unity of Chaos.
The Host of the Truthbringer is divided into four Grand Companies, each lead by the Possessed Champions and attendants of the Prophet Azunar, named Khaane, Tezen, Slanat, and Narag. Each of the Champions is named a Ruinpriest, and leads their company to battle. The four companies are all worshipers of Chaos Undivided as taught by the Book of Lorgar, but each leans infinitesimally toward one God in particular. The four company leaders were also members of a fifth body within the Host, the Ruinous Circle, a clandestine cult at the Warband's heart composed of Aspiring Champions, Sorcerers and other powerful priests and demagogues. There are many lesser companies ruled by a champion and leader of their own, scattered among the host of murderers.
The Sanctified Desolation
The Sanctified Desolation is the Fortress Monastary and Flagship of the Host fleet. It is so daemon-infested and Warp-Infused a hulk that it's form is never fixed, each appearance a slight variation. The central structure of the fortress is referred to as the Grand Cathedral of the Primordial Annihilator, and is the largest and most imposing of the many shrines and monuments within the writhing starship. Within the fortress, countless seers and possessed babble incoherently in the language of the Warp, while scribes mindlessly scribble down their words and profane philosophers debate endlessly upon the meaning of those words. The Sanctified Desolation is the greatest edifice of the Warband, a weapon and fortress that brings terror and madness to whatever world it materializes over.
(More to be added later)
The Gene-Seed of the Abyssal Sons is that of the Word Bearers Legion, derived from the Primarch Lorgar. Though they are far more mutated than their brethren.
Cult and Culture
Main Article: Empyrealism
Truth and Falsehood
- "Understand, whelp, that what you refer to as Realspace is nothing less than the greatest lie of all. We are creatures of spirit, imprisoned in a false world of blood and flesh. So no, I am not murduring you. I am freeing you. I am sending you home."
- —An Astartes of the Host, immediately before slaughtering an entire family within a Hive City
In their time imprisoned within the Warp, the Host came to a single, all-consuming realization: That the Materium is a paper-thin lie, a veil cast over all of our eyes, a mere shadow of the truth of the Warp. As such, the Host is especially interested in destroying the veil between Realspace and the Warp, and to alter the minds, souls and perceptions of Mortals to view existence the same way.
The Host of the Truthbringer did not have a specific homeworld for most of their history, instead drawing recruits from the worlds they conquer. In the Eye of Terror, Screaming Vortex, Maelstrom and many other Warp Rifts throughout the Galaxy, the Daemon Worlds conquered by the Host and their mortal allies have great fortress-cathedrals upon them, where enforcers and members of the Host keep watch over the Mortal population. The most mutated, and those identified as Psykers, are brought into the Warband, but only after passing the 8 Blood Trials, the 9 Tests of Change, the 7 Plagued Paths, and the 6 Tempting Trysts. Only after honoring each of the Ruinous Powers and making clear ones utter devotion to the will of the Warp, the mortal is given the Geneseed implementation and brought to the final trial in which their prophet, Azunar, commits a ritual called the 'Right of the Truthbringer', where the initiate has his eyes opened to the Primordial Truth, and he hears a short infinitesimal blurb of the Voice of Ruin.
The center of the Host's worship is Ruin, the name they give to the Aeon that originally fell from grace and emanated the material world. They see the Warp and Falsespace as two halves of this being, the Sundered Aeon, and worship all Chaos Gods as aspects of Ruin piecing itself back together (Thusly named Ruinous Powers). There is a higher divinity than this, the Primordial Creator itself, but the Host spends most of it's time supplicating to Ruin, for Ruin is all souls, and all souls are shards of Ruin. They revere even Anthelion, as a 'Lucid Dream of Ruin' and an 'Angel of Primordial Annihilation.'
The Host of the Truthbringer has the same iconography as the Bearers of the Word, save for some details. Their right paldron always bears the Latros Sacrum, but the left always bears an identical mutation: a yawning, serrated abyss, like a black mouth, burrowing through the paldron, through the Astartes' own body, down into unknown and unknowable realms.
The Host commits to pre-battle prayer like the Legion they are part of. When in battle they usually use a frontal assault tactic, charging forward like the mad crusaders they are, and bringing corruption and madness wherever they go.
- Horror of Acrya: Azunar and his followers brought three Shrine Worlds, known as the Acrya Triad, to ruin. The final fate of the three world is a grim one, as they were each transformed into planet sized lacking of Realspace, creating the Triad of Oblivion.
- All Black Crusades: The Consecrated took part in all 13 Black Crusades of Warmaster Abaddon.
- Vitatum Crusade: The Host of the Truthbringer only appeared at the very end of the Vitatum Crusade in the form of their Apostle, Azunar. Isolating Sir Jacob Raline using the Warp's tide for a brief chat, he took the Codex Inferna, describing it as 'the final piece of the Great Work.' Whatever this means can only spell doom for the Imperium.
Relics of the Warband
The Helm of Oblivion
The helm worn by the Dark Prophet Azunar, the Helm of Oblivion acts as a focal point for channeling daemonic powers and sorcery.
The Ruinous Testament
A Tome penned by Azunar, this book reflects his teachings and beliefs based on the far more sacred Book of Lorgar. It is filled with Azunar's own rituals and knowledge of the 4 Realms of Chaos, as well as deep knowledge of the supposed Aeon, Ruin. The tome upon which they build their lives, second in holiness only to the Book of Lorgar itself. In addition, it gives a deep and detailed description on the nature of Gods, Daemons and the relationship of any and all Souls of this realm with the Aeon of Ruin, as well as the origin of the Materium.
(Feel free to add your own)
The Host are the center around which the Dark Priesthood orbits. Both organizations were created and are led by Azunar, and both are dedicated to the same goal.
(Feel free to add your own)
The Murdering Sons are a particularly brutal Space Marine Chapter that has long harbored bitter hatred towards those who willingly follow the Ruinous Powers and spread their filth, and none so much as the notorious Chaos warband of fanatics known as the Host of the Truthbringer. When crimes such as insurrection, rebellion or heresy require not simply crushing the guilty, but to exact retribution, the High Lords of Terra deploy the Murdering Sons. As the Host are responsible for spreading their dark faith across the width and breadth of the Imperium sowing corruption, anarchy and insurrection wherever they go, they are rightly hated by the grim warriors of the Murdering Sons. No one knows exactly when these two diametrically opposed forces first crossed bolters and blades, but whenever they encounter one another, it is an unsubtle and often brutally vicious affair. On several occasions, these two factions have fought to near mutual annihilation, such is their bitter hatred for one another.
An Astartes chapter of Raven Guard lineage, the Twilight Shadows hate Lorgar and his sons even more than the Arch Traitor Horus, viewing Lorgar responsible for the corruption of the Traitor Legions. While the Twilight Shadows hold no specific hatred or grudge for the Host of the Truthbringer, they are still of Lorgar's blood and they enjoy interfering with their plans whenever possible. Most notably they have a curious tendency to kill Astartes of the Host in the same fashion that Corax once nearly killed Lorgar, via lightning claws through the chest.
- "We are the Chosen of the Gods. Our Crusade has spanned the Stars and has seen untold worlds burn. None will stand in our way. The Urizen wills it."
- —Anonymous member of the Consecrated
- "Abyssus Vult!"
- —Common battlecry of the Consecrated
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- "Their faith is strong and pure, their bodies blessed with the gifts of the warp and their minds fused with the children of chaos... Yes... Yes these are brothers of mine, kin to me and my Kinsmen, true acolytes of the Primordial Truth!!"
- "Akhan Duus! It seems that Madness incarnate has arrived to taint the Emperor's subjects. We will stand strong and face these heretics. We will not retreat, we will not surrender to the taint. If need be, we will die on this planet, but not without a parting gift. To the heretics, I say this to you. You speak of seeking truth, but you live in a world full of lies. The false gods are only using you, but because you have all succumbed to their will, I shall not feel remorse when I slaughter your kind. COME AT THEE, HERETICS! WE ARE WAITING! (Laughter from distance)"
- —Laughing Skull Zuun Jorgen Cranius' broadcast during a Consecrated invasion.
- "Just because their faith is strong it does not make them right. Just because their so called "gods" shower them with gifts does not make them immortal. Just because your comrades have fled the Emperor's mercy to join, just because they have they have surrounded your planet's last hope, just because have killed your friends and family, IT DOES NOT them unbeatable! Our faith is stronger, our god has blessed us a thousand times over, and they have to climb the ruins of all they have broken to kill us! So let them come, and we shall show them who's god is mightiest!"
- —Inquisitor Jacob Flux, rallying Imperial Guardsmen in a Hive City under siege from the Host
- "At the end of time, when all have lain disguise aside but us, you will learn the most dreadful, wonderful secret. That we wear no mask. All life shall know the face of the Amber King, and shall be undone."
- —Act 1, Scene 3 of The Amber King, avatar of The Masked God. Translated by the Host of the Truthbringer and believed to be a prophecy.
- "If you trained more and preached less then maybe your men wouldn't be lying on the ground with their hearts ripped to shreds. Honestly, for all the gifts you claim that your gods have granted you, clear tactical sense was not one of them. Though I will say that it takes guts, and a great deal of stupidity, to try and fight me after all this. Give my regards to Lorgar."
- —An unknown Shadow Captain of the Twilight Shadows to a Officer of the Host of the Truthbringer after having silently killed most of his squad in an ambush.