- "For the longest of times mankind has feared the flame. We were scared of being burned by it. Thus people like me and my former peers were called upon to smother and restrain the flame whenever we could. However I chose to control the flame. I held it in my hands. I saw its light, felt its warmth, and felt its power to create and destroy. Then I chose to loosen my grip on it. I allowed it to consume me, to burn me into ashes. Then from those ashes I rose, born again. Now I do not control the flame. I am the flame. I see now what I could not before. Glorious!"
- —Edrith Cambion
Edrith Morial Cambion is a Tenebrous One, one of the three leaders of the shadowy organization known as the Vitores Tenebras, and is also a renegade Inquisitor. Formerly an Inquisitor Lord of the Ordo Malleus and a Xanthite, Edrith chose to forsake the Imperium along with his partners Dalila Isiminger, and Cutler Kar, and form their own organization to aid mankind. The Vitores Tenebras. Edrith believes that the key to mankind's survival and prosperity lies in gaining mastery over the Warp, both Psychic powers and the entities of the Warp. Thus he and his branch of the Vitores Tenebras, Spiritus, focus their enrgies upon gaining mastery over the power of the warp in hopes of creating a brighter future for mankind. Unfortunately Edrith delved to deeply into the mysteries of the Empyrean, and as a result he and his closest subordinates have begun to worship the Dark Gods of Chaos. Edrith keeps this fact hidden from his to partners, as well as from most of Spiritus as well. One can only imagine the insane plans that now boil within Edrith's troubled mind.
The exact origins of the venerable Inquisitor gone madman are not entirely known. Like many details regarding the Inquisition and those that serve it much of his past has been obscured. It is believed that he was identified for his psychic powers at a young age, and taken aboard the Black Ships. How he ran across the Inquisition is not entirely known. What is known is that at some point he ran across Inquisitor Naere Banos of the Ordo Hereticus, who identified him as a good candidate for Inquisitorial work, and recruited him as an apprentice.
After a period of time under his master's tutelage Edrith was deemed fit to serve the God-Emperor as a full member of the Inquisition. Like his master before him Edrith initially chose to join the Ordo Hereticus. During this period he was also a stark Amalathian, believing that the Imperium needed to be guarded against upheaval in order to give the Emperor's plans time to reach fruition. During his time hunting heretics he came across a number of cults that were in possession of Daemonic lore. As time went on he came into contact with the Daemonic a number of times, and became proficient in dealing with the Neverborn. This in combination with his belief that Daemons were the root of the corruption within the Imperium prompted him to leave the Ordo Hereticus and join the Ordo Malleus as a dedicated Daemonhunter and opponent of the Dark Gods.
Slipping into Radicalism
In his work fighting against the foul forces of the Daemonic Edrith was exposed to quite a bit of Warp lore. As a Puritan Edrith mostly burned or sealed away such blasphemous knowledge so that it could not harm the souls of others, but occasionally Edrith would catch just a small bit of information from what he dealt with, powerful secrets that could do both great good, or evil in the right hands. Slowly Edrith's curiosity got the better of him. He began to seek out more knowledge of the Daemonic, and of the warp in general so that he might better know how to deal with the Neverborn.
In particular one piece of lore fascinated Cambion. On a particular planet Cambion found a record of a long dead civilization of humans. The priests of this civilization, whom Cambion assumed were Psykers of some sort, had managed to enslave daemons and other creatures of the warp to the nations service seemingly without suffering corruption. This civilization survived for close to a century, finally falling due to internal strife, but until that point they had been the dominant nation on the planet. Could it be that with proper knowledge and strength of will that the power of the warp and its denizens could be harnessed without fear of damnation? This thought, which contradicted all Imperial teaching on the matter, haunted Edrith. Shortly after this Edrith joined the Xanthite faction, and began working to enslave the warp to man's needs. Edrith found sympathetic ears amongst his fellow Xanthites, but never quite to cooperation he wanted. Edrith saw the Imperium becoming an Empire whose supremacy was based entirely on power from the warp. Even among Radicals this was a bit hard to swallow, and thus Cambion grew frustrated. To him even his so called Radical peers were still too close-minded to see the truth.
As years progressed Cambion grew increasingly frustrated with his lack of progress, and the refusal of even his Radical peers to accept his ideas. Edrith believed wholeheartedly that the power of the Warp was the key to everything. After all the Imperium was already an empire that relied upon the Warp for its existence. All interstellar communication and travel was done via the Warp, countless battles and wars had been won by dent of the Imperium's Sanctioned Psykers, and even the Astronomicon and the life of thebeloved Emperor were preserved by the sacrifice of Psykers. Why then was it such a stretch that the Imperium should gain total mastery over the forces that held it together? Could the Imperium not become an unstoppable force if they stopped fearing the Warp, and began to exploit it to its fullest potential? Yet time and again his efforts to delve deeper into the mysteries of the Wyrd were blocked by those that feared it.
However a disaster would change Edrith's fate. For years the Sephadollion Sector had been the subject of aggression by some mysterious force. Along the Sector's borders Merchant vessels were being attacked, and small colonies were being wiped out with nary a word. No survivors were ever left to testify what occured, but each incident presented clues. Investigations into the incidents showed that the weapons used to attack the ships and colonies were not of human origin, or at the very least not of Imperial origin. Occsional samples of destroyed devices and vehicles left behind by the assailants would further prove this. Additional scrutiny also hinted of the use of witchcraft and Chaotic influences during the raids. A creeping paranoia began to knaw at the Sector, and thus the Sector's Inquisitorial Conclave made arrangements to address the potential threat.
The Luminus Cabal was formed to investigate and counter the threat once it was properly identified. The Cabal was only active for a short time before their questions were answered. Out of the shadows of Wilderness Space came the Visceri, and Xenos species most foul. The Visceri were an advanced race of Xenos that openly courted the foul Daemons of the Warp, and made use of macabre Sorcery alongside their malefic sciences. In addition to this they brought their Thrall Legions. These Thralls were humans that the Visceri had abducted, modified and brainwashed for service to their new masters. The raids had been the Visceri's way of scouting the Sector's defences, gathering intelligence and collecting slaves to be converted to Thralls.
A number of planets rapidly fell to the malignant Xenos, and the creeping paranoia that had gripped the Sector metamorphasized into outright panic. Moving swiftly The Imperium arranged a military response under the guidance of the Inquisition. The resulting conflict would later be named the Lak'vrey Retaliation, so named after the first planet to be ravaged once war broke out. Along with a handful of Astartes Chapters, a number of Imperial Guard regiments and the whole of Battlefleet Sephadollion, the Luminus Cabal and its resources were mobilized to counter the Visceri.
It was in the Luminus Cabal that Edrith would meet his two co-conspirators, Dalila Isiminger and Cutler Kar. In these two Edrith found kindred spirits. Like him they believed that even the Radicals amongst the Inquisition were not going far enough to protect humanity's future. They were all too bound by the backwards thinking of the Imperium. They had very different ideas about how to go about securing Man's survival, but each agreed that the only way was to break away from the Imperium and seek their goals unrestricted. The beginnings of a sinister plot were affoot.
The trio hatched a plan to break away from the Imperium and create an organization that would go to the necessary lengths on mankind's behalf. However in the meantime they participated in the war against the Visceri. Edrith proved to be a great asset in the war effort, as his in depth understanding of the Warp aided the Imperial forces in countering the sorcery and Daemonic allies of the Visceri. The war also gave Edrith an excuse to study the Warp arts of the Visceri, which were considerable.
In addition during the war the three conspirators sought to recruit their fellow Inquisitors in the Luminus Cabal. They subtly tested just how loyal each of their compatriots was to the Imperial cause, and how open they were to a new way of doing things. Sadly only a few came around to their way of seeing things. Edrith and his companions were forced to arrange "accidents" on the battlefield for some of their peers in order to conceal their treachery. Eventually the war ended in the Imperium's favor when the home planet of the Visceri was located and subjected to Exterminatus. With that out of the way Edrith, Dalila and Cutler could now focus on carrying out their designs undistracted.
Following the war with the Vesceri Edrith was awarded the position of Inquisitor Lord, and the three set their plans in motion. They reached out through their various contacts, searching for those that they could gather for their cause and acquiring needed resources. Often they used their investigations to acquire assets. Edrith sought out Apostate Psykers that were accused of Sorcery, heretics that were versed in Daemonolgy and other warp related disciplines, and texts containing heretical lore. It is no surprise that an Inquisitor woulkd seek such things out, but where a normal agent of the Inquisiton does so to eliminate such dangerous element, Edrith sought them out to acquire them for the purposes of his scheme.
Eventually the three attained enough resources and supporters to start there work. All that was left was to tie up loose ends and leave their service to the Inquisition. Dalila was the first to depart. She faked her death so that she could set down the foundations of Animus, and the Vitores Tenebras as a whole. She also began dealing with the loose ends with earnest. First and foremost of these was the other former members of the Luminus Cabal.
During the Cabal's activities the three had tried to sway the other members into joining their cause. A small number had joined them, butmost had proven intractable in their loyalty to the Imperium. While they had tested their peers' loyalty is such a way that they could not be directly accused of treason. However it had caused a number of their peers to grow suspicious of them, and those they had tried to sway had a greater knowledge of their plans than was comfortable. Some of those that had grown suspicious had even began to shadow the three traitors. Of all the threats that could nip the Vitores Tenebras in the bud, these individuals had the best chance.
Thus the renegade Inquisitors set to work eliminating the former members of the Cabal that had not already joined their cause. One by one their former colleagues were discretely and systematically eliminated. However it was not without a great deal of effort. Inquisitors are mighty individuals that are used to lives of intrigue and danger, and some of them came to realize that they were being hunted. Near the end of their efforts to eliminate the former Luminus members, severtal of their former colleagues banded together and came dangerously close to exposing the traitors. Edrith, Dalila and Cutler than chose to make a sacrifice for the greater good of their goals. They set up a scenario in which the remaining members of the Cabal would be eliminated by the members that they had persuaded into treason. The scenario would play out in such a way that the traitor Inquisitors would die in the process, and would implicate them and draw suspicion away from Edrith and Cutler.
Their plot ultimately worked, though it came at the cost of potentially valuable allies, but their secrets were safe for the time being. Edrith then made use of his knowledge of the Warp to identify a planet which would soon be cut off from the Imperium by a Warp Storm. Edrith went to this planet under the excuse of investigating potential Daemonic activity. Slightly before the Warp Storm isolated the world Edrith slipped away covertly. To the rest of the Imperium it seemed that Edrith was now trapped on a planet that was cut off from the rest of the Imperium for an indefinite amount of time. He was now free to operate fully in his role as one of the leaders of the Vitores Tenebras, and quickly organized his own branch of the group, Spiritus. Edrith could now strive towards complete mastery of the Warp unbound by the backwards dogma of the Imperium.
Edrith began his activities in earnest. Now there was no one that could limit his study, and he had the necessary resources to pursue any agenda he saw fit so long as it worked towards the interests of the Vitores Tenebras. Edrith slowly fashioned Spiritus to his ideals. Spiritus was smaller than the other two branches of Vitores Tenebras, but this was a matter of preference. Their area of study regarded secrets and forces that could break normal men and women, and thus edrith made sure that those that were recruited to serve under him were those he believed could handle their allotted tasks. Spiritus also had a certain hierarchy of secrecy. The secrets that he sought were dangerous, and their inteneded use were radical even by radical standards. Thus Edrith entrusted his secrets to his subordinates sparingly.
Spiritus became veiled in layer after layer of secrecy. Much of what the branch did was obscured from the others. In addition the many of the agendas and knowledge possessed by the most high ranking members of Spiritus, each of which were trusted, hand picked supporters of Edrith, were often kept from the lower echelons and other divisions of the branch. Spiritus slowly became mired in secrets, both within and without.
With his organization set up Edrith set it to the course that he had decided upon. The mastery of the Warp for the sake of Mankind. Edrith set his agents out to recruit and acquire Apostate Psykers, and even turn some Sanctioned Psykers to his cause. In addition he created the Dhot Vodzi, a division of Spiritus devoted solely to training Psykers and helping them to reach their full potential. Often Psykers acquired by the other two branches were sent to Spiritus to undergo additional training. Most importantly Edrith sent his agents out to research and acquire exotic Warp Lore. The galaxy was filled with Witch Cults, covens of Sorcerers and even Xenos Psychic traditions. Edrith set out to learn of, and master them all. After all any of there many traditions could hold the key to mastering the Sea of Souls.
Edrith alos began to study methods by which one could bend the inhabitants of the Warp to one's will. It was one of Edrith's darest ambitions that mankind could one day enslave the creatures of the Beyond to their glorious purpose. Edrith summoned, captured and bound numerous daemons for this purpose during this period. Within the dungeons of his personal fort he held scores fo captured Daemons, and other more exotic Psychic Entities for study. Truly Edrith had plunged himself into his ambition.
However all was not well. The old idiom about looking into the Warp proved true, as edrith's mind grew more strange and unstable as he dived deeper into the mysteries of the Immaterium. In addition some of his trusted subordinates proved weaker than he was to the lure of the Dark Gods. Slowly these advisors began to whisper poison into his ears, compounding the malady of the mind that was already taking root. Slowly the inevitable happened, and Edrith turned his gaze towards the Chaos Gods. His original vision was twisted, and Edrith became convinced that Mankind's ascension and supremacy in the universe could only come if they fully embraced the warp, and those that embodied it. Edrith reorganized the leadership of Spiritus into a Chaos Cult, and set to his new ambition with relish.
However Edrith was not a fool. He knew that his allies and many that served under him would not understand his vision. If he hoped to get the time he needed to reach his goal, his new enlightenment would need to be kept a secret. The change in mindset amongst the leadership of Spiritus was kept a secret. Only Edrith, his Inner Circle and certain hand picked agents would be allowed to know the truth. All others would be kept in the dark. Most of Spiritus was unaware that they were now being lead by an insidious Chaos Cult. In addition Cambion kept his state from his fellow Tenebrous Ones. They would not understand, especially Dalila, who was distrustful of Cambion's activities to begin with. Edrith slowly isolated himself, rarely speaking with those outside the Inner Circle, and even more rarely showing himself in person to the rank and file of Spiritus, and to his partners in treachery. Edrith became a mysterious figure whose mind and motives were barely understood. A vitrual hermit within the greater Vitores Tenebras.
However this did not mean his hands were idle. He still sought to empower mankind through the Warp, and continued his various projects, but soon a new undertaking would spring into Edrith's unwell mind. Edrith suddenly became consumed with a new, mad vision for mankind which he believed was granted to him by the Dark Gods themselves. If he was right then he would be the tool by which humanity would enter a new epoch. Edrith began to pursue this new goal with the feverish intensity of a lunatic. He would succeed, or burn the world trying.
During his period of service to the Inquisition cambion was a somewhat unimposing individual. Far from a warmonger or puppet master, Edrith was a scholar and an idealist. Edrith believed in learning everything one could about a problem, and coming up with an intellectual answer for the issue. This in part is why he was frustrated by the approach that many Inquisitors had to dealing with Chaos. From his point of view simply rejecting the idea of Chaos and anything regarding the Warp, and destroying them when they appeared was a short-sighted appraoch to the issue. It was like applying a bandaid to to gaping wound, or treating the symptoms rather than the disease itself.
On a whole Edrith was a quite individual. He rarely expressed his emotions via either word or act, and on a whole refused to speak unless he felt he had something significant to say on a matter. If engaged on a subject that Edrith felt was important however, Edrith would often provide a wealth of insight, and on a whole Edrith enjoyed academic discussion and debate.
As Edrith continued down the path of Radicalism he became more and more convinced that Mankind could only achieve lasting peace and prosperity by mastering the energies of the Warp. Psychic power could ignore the rules of physics, and bring about wonders that could never be possible by purely physical or scientific means. Furthermore he has looked towards race like the Eldar who have attained a level of mastery over such power. Thus Edrith believed that Mankinds destiny would come through embracing and nurturing Psyker, rather than hating and fearing them, and by learning to master and make use of the creatures that lived in the Immaterium.
Another thing of note was that Edrith often did not go out into the field, and more often than not left direct combat and operations to his trusted followers rather than dive into the midst of conflict himself. This combined with his natural stoicism and scholarly manner made many of his peers in the Inquisition believe that Cambion was a coward or layabout who did not possess the strength of will to act on his own. In fact nothing could be further from the truth. Edrith was a cautious sort, but his choice to rarely take the field was one of preference. He prefered to have some distance from a conflict so that he might better understand a situation as a whole rather than get caught up in the immediate details. In addition Edrith firmly believed that nothing of any significance could be accomplished if the one attempting the endeavor was not willing to take serious risks to achieve their ends, and Edrith was more than willing to risk his own welfare if he believed it necessary to reach some great end.
Edrith came to view himself as a seeker of knowledge, viewing the act of reaching for greater understanding as a profoundly noble one. For this reason Edrith has a certain degree of respect for those that pursue the academic or scientific arts. No doubt this is one reason why he and Cutler Kar originally got along. However Edrith believes that the knowledge derived from physical science, such as that which Kar concerns himself, is of a lesser importance than the ephemeral, cosmic truths that he sought. He became a mystic. One who sought profound understanding of a philosophical and spiritual quality. To him the cosmic mysteries of the soul, the worlds beyond and supernatural power trumped all else.
After Edrith went renegade and began to worship the Chaos Gods a change came over his character. He was still as quite and brooding as before, if not more so. However a manic intensity began to manifest itself within him. The worship of the dark Gods began to twist his mind, and madness now dwells behind the sagely facade. Edrith is now proned to fits of mania, paranoia and violent outbursts. He also pursues his goals with a single minded intensity that dwarfs his previous convictions by far. Some among his advisors and officers noted that change, and originally believed that they could use Edrith's madness to manipulate him. However while it now suffered from insanity, Edrith's mind wasas sharp as ever, and his unshakeable sense of purpose and direction would not be detered by the petty ambitions of lesser men. Those under him would either aid him in accomplishing his vision, or be cast aside.
He came to view the embrace of Chaos as Mankinds means of ascendance. To Edrith the Chaos Gods were the product of Mankind's collective psychic consciousness. A tool that humans had created to bring about thier potential, and the means by which mankind could evolve into a more perfect being. A being that derived its power from the Psychic forces of the Warp. He also had an epiphany regarding the means to more quickly bring about man's new epoch, and it is to this project that edrith has devoted the lion's share of his attention and efforts of late.
Whe he began Spiritus Edrith saw fit to obscure much of its activities and breakthrough from the rest of the Vitores Tenebras. It was his view that in depth knowledge of the Warp's power was to dangerous for the personnel of the other branches to possess. He worried that if lesser men and women came to possess such dangerous secrets that it would bring ruin to all, and thus kept most of his work to himself and those under his watch that he deemed capable of handling such powerful mysteries. However with his fall to Chaos he also obscures his activites from his fellows, and even from the greater bulk of Spiritus to protect his ideals. he knows that many under his command as well as his partners within the Vitores Tenebras would not understand his new vision. Thus Edrith has become something of a hermit within the Vitores Tenebras, often acting and communicating through middle men rather than directly. He often only meets to speak with the other two Tenebrous Ones through hologram, or psychic projection, and most often wears a hood to obscure his now mutated features.
|Hive Worlds||Triam · Estomor · Lak'Vrey|
|Forge Worlds||Dedriton · Sillicalon|
|Other||Tangaroa · Bythantis · Vilgalan · Halcyon · Fractus · Three-Hundred Fifty · Qenia · Ancheron Prime · Cicholos · Sulakta · Assila · Carnivos · Sharash|
|Tenebarite Cabal||Jacki Vulsen · Alexei de'Ossmann · Bradan Peregrem · Avarious Van Hohen · Cherrice Bauyon · Rayas Mearas · Alexander Buhoveckey|
|Others||Mordred Troy · Dante Buhoveckey · Florianus Buhoveckey · Cutler Kar · Dalila Isiminger · Edrith Cambion · Sophia Riyeko · Skarek Usid · Dorianus Ven Adrien · Morgan Jome · Bartholomew Arinus · Zerath Devorian · Erlösung XI · Lin Mai · Mitchell Ramone|
|Human||Blazing Claws · Vitores Tenebras|
|Xenos||Visceri · Hive Fleet Erebus|