- "Stand your ground or flee - the choice is yours. You are only delaying the inevitable, for the carrion crows shall feast regardless."
- —Lord-Phobetor Rygaard shortly before the battle of Exria began
The Dream Stalkers are a Loyalist Space Marine Chapter and a 26th Founding Successor Chapter of the Doom Eagles, with close ties to the Adeptus Arbites. While they do share their progenitor's morbid nature, the Dream Stalker Astartes do not accept their eventual death with grim fatalism. Instead, they strive to become nightmares incarnate that relentlessly haunt the existance of those who would dare oppose the Imperium.
The Astartes of the Chapter do not adhere closely to the Codex Astartes, however, they do respect and honour the Codex Astartes as the work of their Primarch.
Background and History
On the very fringe of Imperial space, near the obscure Halo Zone, lies the planet of Tindalos. It is considered a civilized world, although this can only be said with certainty for the few major cities. The rest of Tindalos consists of mountainous terrain covered by boreal forests, large valleys and coastal stretches, woodlands and plains, laying beneath a pale gray sky. Ice and snow shroud a large span of the world's surface throught most of the year.
All of this, coupled with the dangerous fauna, produces a sturdy and disciplined population, perfect candidates for Astartes.
The Dream Stalkers were part of the 26th founding. The reason for their creation and placement was the fact that the sector of Acratea was nearly devoid of Imperial armed forces, but was a sector under threat, that experienced nearly constant raids and onslaughts because of raiders that resided in the Halo Zone.
The first Chapter Master was a Doom Eagle Company Captain, who was chosen due to his charismatic nature and remarkable leadership abilities.
During the event that became known as the Sundering, the pirates, xenos and heretics that resided in the Halo Zone, supported by a Chaos warband, launched an assault against the homeworld of the Dream Stalkers. While the majority of the Marines were off planet, having contributed forces in the suppresion of the ongoing "Night of a Thousand Rebellions", the attackers still could not breach the planetary defences of Tindalos. Instead the majority of the invading forces landed on the Exria, Tindalos' natural satellite.
While most of the Dream Stalkers were recalled to take part in the Sundering, not all of them assisted in the liberation of Exria. The Command of the Chapter decided to take advantage of the fact that the majority of the Halo Zone's elite troops were deployed away from it. And so the Dream Stalkers launched a counter-attack while still enaged in a fight right next to their homeworld.
This risky strategy proved to be highly successful and the Dream Stalkers managed to liberate Exria and delivered several crippling blows to the bases of operation of the bandits in the Halo Zone, while taking relatively light loses themselves.
Current state of the Chapter (999.M41)
The Dream Stalkers are currently recovering from the battle that nearly engulfed their homeworld, though they are still a force to be reckoned with, ready and able to fight again if challenged.
One of the main roles that the Chapter fullfills is safeguarding Imperial Space from attacks launched from the Halo Zone and containing the scum that inhabits it. Due to this they are organized as an adaptable and formidable force that can react quickly and strike hard anywhere through the sector.
They are also experienced in boarding actions and ship-to-ship combat, skills again needed to combat the bandits that assail from the Halo Zone.
Most of the Dream Stalkers' weaponry is standard for a Space Marine Chapter, though part of it are variations of the standard patterns, adapted for combat in closed spaces.
I. The Battle of Exria (Part of the Sundering)
When the Raider Alliance descended upon Exria, a large number of Dream Stalkers were off planet, leaving only the 4th Company and some small detachments of other companies to deal with the pirates. The Dream Stalkers and the Exrian Defence Force were initially overwhelmed but managed to conduct a rigorous guerilla war using the dangerous environment to their advantage. Despite taking some casulties, they managed to stall the raiders long enough for the main Dream Stalker relief force to arrive and reclaim the moon.
II. Night of a Thousand Rebellions
During this event, that scourged the Segmentum Pacificus, many Dream Stalkers were deployed as support for the overwhelmed Imperial Guard and PDF forces and helped quell the riots and rebellions and well as repulse the Chaos Warbands that came to take advantage of the situation.
III. Smuggling Ring Takedown on Aeson IV
While the Night of a Thousand Rebellions was taking place, the Dream Stalkers assisted the Adeptus Arbites in taking down a Rogue Trader dynasty that was smuggling Obscura and other illegal substances. The Adeptus Arbites launched their own operation only to discover that the Rogue dynasty had the backing of the planet's governor and Planetary Defence Force (which was in possession of several hundred Leman Russ tanks). To even out the odds, the Adeptus Arbites requested the support of Astartes from the Dream Stalker Chapter. The entire 4th and 5th Companies were deployed as well as the 11th Division of the Acratean Armored Rangers . Their combined firepower was more than enough to bring back the planet into the righteous law of the Lex Imperialis.
During the late 999.M41, the Dream Stalker support was again requested by the Adeptus Arbites. This time their foe were not mere smugglers though. The threat came from a Genestealer Cult that had infiltrated the capital planet of the Acratean Sector, Acrateus Prime. When exposed by Inquisitors of the Ordo Xenos, the cult resorted to military action to ensure it's survival. The initial Imperial response was a force of Arbitrators though at that point the cult had grown exponentially and the Arbitrators were overwhelmed. The Arbitrators called for the assistance of the Dream Stalkers. A task force was formed, composed by Ordo Xenos Inquisitors, Arbitrators Dream Stalkers and Deathwatch Astartes. The Astartes presence was enough to turn the tide against the Genestealers and Hybrids and eventually, after a short siege, Acrateus was purged and made free from the vile xenos.
Unlike regular Codex-compliant chapters every company of the Dream Stalkers and contains Scout infantry, Terminator units and vehicles. This was done to make each Company more self-sufficient, so it could be deployed by itself and still function on it's own, if necessary.
Coldwing is the name of the first Company of the Dream Stalkers and it contains the Chief-Officers of the Chapter as well as most of the Honour Guard. While most of the rest of the companies use Mithril Silver to colour their armour trim, the first company uses Moebius Gold.
The Dream Stalker initiates come from the civilized settlements of Tindalos and it's moon Exria. A potential recruit is judged by both mental and physical qualities. Intelligence and perception are regarded as just as important as physical strenght, stamina and endurance.
To be fully accepted into the ranks of the Dream Stalkers an initiate must undertake a pilgrimage of the mind, journeying through their worst fears, as they are placed in a device similiar to the Pain Glove of the Imperial Fists. This device is not meant to induce physical pain, however. Instead it is meant to put the Initiate into a sleep-like state where the Initiate's greatest nightmares and worst fears are simulated in a virtual reality. If the Initiate manages to pull through, without giving in to his fear and dread, he is accepted in the ranks of the Dream Stalkers as a full-fledged Astartes.
The Dream Stalker training is approximately several Terran years long. During it the initiates are given training in several fields with emphasis placed on marksmanship, close-combat in confined spaces, reconnaissance and concealment.
During their training, the Initiates are also known to take part in Arbites operations againt outlaws on their homeworld and on it's moon, which has led to a sort of partnership between the Chapter and the Imperial Institution.
The Dream Stalkers' main role requires them to have a fairly large, well organized and lethal fleet. Responsible for leading the fleet is Captain Corde, known as Master of the Void.
- Battle Barges (2)
- Blood Meridian
- Pale Horse
- Strike Cruisers (6)
- Eden Valley
- Distant Hope
- Halo Star
- Escorts (5, rest destroyed)
- Acratean Legacy
- Venture Ranger
While their geneseed is stable, courtesy of their Ultramarine lineage, the Dream Stalkers are noted to have an unusual attraction to the cold.
The Dream Stalkers mainly utilize the standard patterns of Astartes vehicles, though currently they are in a shortage after experiencing a period of somewhat particularly heavy combat.
The Chapter has is in possession of a single venerable Fellblade tank, named "Scion of Frost" that was unleashed during the Battle of Exria.
Revenant Guard, the Honour Guard
The Revenant Guard, the elite cadre of highly distinguished Astartes which compose the Honour Guard, are sworn to uphold the ideals of the Dream Stalkers to the bitter end, if need be. They serve different duties that include protecting the Lord-Commander, the Chapter-Relics and the Fortress-Monastery, as well as serving as elite shock-troops.
The majority of Revenants are clad in Terminator Armor and serve in the 1st Company, however Revenants have occasionally been deployed alongside other Marines from other companies.
Most of the Terminator Armor units belonging to the Dream Stalkers are of the standard Indomitus Pattern, widespread as they are effective.
The Chapter maintains close ties to it's progenitor, the Doom Eagles, as well as close ties to Adeptus Arbites precincts through the Sector of Acratea, as they have been called into action as support during Arbitrator operations, starting with their joint operation against the smugglers on Aeson IV.
The first Chapter Master knew that if a Astartes Chapter is to properly fulfill it's duty of protecting humanity, it's preferable that it's on good terms with the other Imperial institutions, especially the Inquisition. Thus, in order to remain on friendly terms with the Inquisition, the Dream Stalkers seconded marines to the Deathwatch, whenever they were requested to.
Due to the close promixity of their bases of operation and their frequent joint deployments, the Dream Stalkers have a connection to the Imperial Guard regiment of the Acratean Armored Rangers.
The Dream Stalkers harbor resentment towards no particular enemy as of yet, though they would still respond with zeal against any enemy of that dares to challenge the will of the Emperor.
"Of darkness and light."- The Dream Stalker mantra
Due to the close connection to their progenitors, the Doom Eagles chapter, the Dream Stalkers are marines characterized by a grim and defiant nature. They favor the qualities of rigid discipline and self-reliance. The Astartes are fiercely loyal to the Chapter as well as to the Imperium.
The Dream Stalkers are known to take conduct cold-related rituals such as meditation in nearly freezing conditions such as the blizzards that often envelop the mountain peak that hosts their fortress-monastery, believing that the cold helps them concentrate and elaborate on their thoughts.
Aside from protecting their homeworld, they also take part in Arbites operations against outlaws on their homeworld. One part because they try to improve the wellbeing of the citizens of Tindalos and another, for the extra training that this gives them.
What separates them from quite a few of the other chapters is that an unwritten rule exists among the Dream Stalkers that requires a helmet to be worn during combat, no matter the rank of the Marine.
The name "Dream Stalker" comes from the name of a now extinct psionic deer-like animal that used to roam Tindalos until it was hunted down by the early human settlers. This is the reason for the antlered skull being their badge as well.
The Wendigo-Pattern is a modification of the standard Godwyn-Pattern designed to be wielded in confined spaces such as the claustrophobic corridors of a spacecraft. What sets the two patterns apart is the Lightning Claw-like bayonet mounted below the barrel of the Wendigo-Pattern.
While this pattern is highly effective in close-ranged combat, the rarity of the power blades needed to produce the attachment means that this bolter is distributed to the elite of the Dream Stalkers.
Exria-Pattern Power Blade
The Exria-Pattern Power Blade is a devastating close-combat weapon able to slice it's way through armor, flesh and bone with ease. Although It's blade is far shorter than that of a Power Sword, the Exria Pattern Power Knife makes for a formidable back-up weapon. A set back to it's use, however, is it's rarity and the fact that it is hard to maintain. It is usually deployed with sergeants leading tactical squads.
Another flaw of the blade is that it's energy source tends to give up during rigorous use due to the energy generator straining severely.
The Lantern Bolts, also known "Devil's Breath" and produced by the Chapter's Techmarines, are designed to counter lightly-armored organic enemies at all ranges. The tip of the bolt contains a cocktail of highly-flammable incendiary substances such as white phosphorus triggered to explode after encountering resistance such as the one from passing through armor. This can have a devastating effect against flesh hidden behind only light armor.
The Burned Sierra is an ancient suit of Mk3 Power Armor with most of the paint scorched off. While the suit's mechanisms are thoroughly mantained, no effort has been made to repaint it, thus the name. Rumours are that the suit dates back to the Horus Heresy.
Dragoncrest is an ancient Storm Shield of an unknown pattern, a gift from the Doom Eagles for the newly founded chapter.
Claw of Leng
The Claw of Leng is an Angel's Talon pattern Lightning Claw recovered from an abandoned outpost located upon a desert world. The outpost was supposedly located in a region of the planet known as the Plateau of Leng and thus the name.
I. Rygaard, Lord-Phobetor
Lord-Phobetor Rygaard is the current Chapter Master of the Dream Stalkers, the first Dream Stalker Chapter Master hailing from Tindalos and the second Chapter Master overall. Rygaard was groomed for command by the previous Lord-Phobetor, specifically, because of his natural leadership skills and charisma, as well as unorthodox methods of operation. The unorthodox methods were considered needed to help safeguard the borders of Imperial space from the Halo Zone raiders and provide overwatch for that isolated part of the Imperium.
II. Anterius, Chief-Apothecary
Amalric Anterius used to be an Apothecary of the Ultramarines, until he was selected to travel alongside Doom Eagles and Ultramarines to the fringe of the Segmentum Pacificus and help start the new Chapter. Anterius dedicated himself entirely to the Dream Stalkers and, indeed, many Dream Stalkers brothers owe life and limb to Anterius' exceptional skills.
III. Coldstream, Master of Sanctity
Coldstream's identity and even his name is shrouded in mystery to everyone but the highest ranking senior officers of the Dream Stalkers. What is know, however, is that Coldstream is esentially the spiritual-leader of the Chapter and with his speeches and very presence inspires the Dream Stalkers, to push themselves far beyond their limit and perform exceptional feats of bravery and courage.
IV. Graham, Chief-Librarian
Graham grew up on Tindalos, with his control over the Warp manifesting at an early age. This lead to him being handpicked to become a Dream Stalker by the Chief-Librarian of that time. The young Librarian rose through the ranks and when the previous Chief-Librarian was slain, Graham took his place. His powers allow him to project unnatural lightning, wing and ice, using the elements to obliterate his foes.
V. Vannheim, Force Commander
Vannheim, another native of Tindalos, distinguished himself while leading an operational detachment of Stalkers during the initial defense of Exria.
TindalosTindalos, the homeworld of the Dream Stalkers, is located in the sector of Acratea, just outside the Halo Zone of the Segmentum Pacificus. It is considered a Civilized world, but it also has some elements of a Death World, including dangerous environmental conditions in part of it and partially hostile fauna. Parts of it's surface are covered by cyclopean stone structures from some previous civilization that called Tindalos it's home, though that society is long lost.
Tindalos has a natural satellite, a moon called Exria, which is classified as both a Dead World and a Civilized World. It hosts several human settlements as well as manufactorums and mines.
Tindalos was settled in the late M37 and existence for it's inhabitants has been mostly peaceful, although the smaller settlements suffer from the dangerous fauna.
Tanelorn, Fortress-Monastery of the Dream Stalkers
Tanelorn is the name of the Fortress-Monastery of the Dream Stalkers. It is a group of several cyclopean towers made of stone and inscribed with strange but undreadable sigils, standing frozen upon a peak known as the Ghostspire, located in one of the northernmost regions of Tindalos.
By the Dream Stalkers
- "Keep your blade sharp and your skills sharper."
- — Scout-Master Rhys Hawthorne
- "The dream calls for blood!"
- — Lord-Phobetor Rygaard concluding his speech before the final battle of the Exrian reclamation
- "The carrion crows fly forth once again."
- — Force Commander Vannheim after the Sundering was concluded.
- "Do not let your mind be overcome by the shadows while traversing the deep."
- — Graham advicing a fellow Librarian
- "Darkness is but a state of mind."
- — Attributed to Graham
- "I have not come to peace with my fate just yet... Brothers! Death rises up skyward!"
- — Coldstream rallying his fellow Dream Stalkers when ambushed