History of Fidea Prime
The early history of Fidea Prime has mostly been lost, buried in the endless drifts of snow or carried away by the howling wind. What is known about therir early history is that 44 tribes each producing a single warband called the world home. These 44 tribes formed 4 alliances all vying for control of Fidea.
Despite their tribal society they still retained enough technology that one of their scientists took note of the plummeting temperatures. He estimated that they had maybe 150 years left, every tribe would have to work together or they would all die. This alone would unify them and they would work together to carve their underground cities from the earth over the course of several lifetimes.
When the Ice Age came they would be ruled over by the Oligarchy, 4 men or women descended from the leaders of the old tribal alliances. While there are still scattered settlements on the surface of the planet most live underground where life is far easier.
Teodora Mafetti, captain of the Battlefleet Medici Dictator cruiser Leonara Superba would be the one to rediscover the world and bring it into the Imperial Fold in Millenia 39. He only arrived in the system due to an act of sabotage by 500 crewmen who had turned to Chaos to cope with his tyrannical leadership. He exiled them to the surface of Fidea Secundus believing that the bitter cold would kill them quickly. He was wrong and so indirectly laid the foundations for the war 2 millennia later.
The War with the Wel'Kor'cha
While Fidea Prime is isolated from the rest of the Imperium (though slowly becoming more well known) and far removed from its wars they saw one of their own lasting from 690-723 M41. The Imperial Guard raised from Fidea Prime were deployed against a single enemy unknown until they emerged from their cities beneath the ice on Fidea Secundus and elsewhere in the system in 690 M41. While not a threat to the Imperium as a whole they were a threat to the people of Fidea Prime.
Their name was unprouncable to humans, but not the name of the Warchief, as commanders are known in Fidea parlance,in overall command. Wel’Kor’cha led his armies against the Fidea Imperial Guard for decades before falling in battle. With his leadership gone, organized resistance collapsed and the race’s dedication to a primitive form of Chaos worship became known.
Both sides entered the conflict woefully underprepared, leading to relatively small armies on both sides. Roughly 300,000 Wel'Kor'cha warriors invaded Fidea Prime only to be repulsed with heavy losses. After surviving the first assault 44 Imperial Guard regiments were raised to take the system in the name of the Emperor traveling aboard merchant vessels converted into troop transports with crew on loan from nearby merchant fleets and Battlefleet Medici.
96,800 newly minted Fidea Imperial Guard left Fidea Prime and the war became a decades long struggle of trenches and infantry assaults. It was incredibly costly to both sides as both the Fidea and The Wel'Kor'cha continued to pour troops into the fight. In the end though the 44 regiments of the Fidea Imperial Guard were triumphant taking Fidea 2,3 and 4 and reducing their enemy to relic populations.
Structurally they are organized like the tribal warbands from the 44 tribes of humanity that still call Fidea home their tradition continues with each tribe now producing a single Imperial Guard Regiment. Those that share a common alliance work better together while otherwise their rivalries are more friendly but still present. The best known of these units are the 44th Fidea
Geography, Flora and Fauna
Fidea Prime contains 3 major continents and small islands scattered through its 2 major oceans. If they were ever inhabited any signs of it have long since vanished. Travel between them is almost impossible due to the enormous icebergs that drift in unpredictable patterns and foul weather only spacecraft can penetrate.
While not a Death World Fidea Prime is hostile to life and only the most hardy of creatures can survive unprotected for more than an hour at most. For those animals and people who know how to find them mountain caves and hot springs provide the needed shelter from the harsh weather, the largest hot springs even support small forests. Every few years the temperature warms up enough to provide a few all too short weeks of warm weather allowing pale flowers to bloom along once frozen rivers.
Otherwise the only plant life is primitive lichens clinging to life wherever they can and mushrooms which were once a favored ingredient in tomato based sauces produced on Medici that grow in the caves.
Rumors persist that there are creatures that live beneath the ice of the frozen rivers and the larger icebergs. These creatures of legend are known as "Water Worms." According to these rumors they are more than 30 meters long with pale white skin speckled with black spots. Blind but with a mouth full of cilia that they use as sensory organs and travel via muscle contraction as they lack legs. So far these stories are only rumors leaving people to wonder where exactly the stories came from.
Grox came to the Fidea as an import but after many generations the farmers and breeders of the world produced a breed much more resistant to cold. Only the wealthy of Fidea Prime ever really eat it, most is raised for export elsewhere. However they are distant genetic cousins to Syprios Grox as that breed's resistance to cold came from their DNA.
Culture and people
The people of Fidea Prime have a few distinct traits that set them apart from the rest of the Imperium. As a whole they have very pale skin, icy blue eyes and pale gray hair which they wear long. They are also uniquely suited to fight in cold environments due to their constant exposure to it. That trait has served them well as every inhabitable planet in the Fidea system is a frozen ball of ice much like their homeworld.
Due to their isolation from the rest of the Imperium they are seen by those who are aware of them as being half barbarian and half civilized. The people of Fidea do nothing to disprove this. While they worship the Emperor as their chief deity they also retain an animist tradition, one extended to an almost fanatical belief in Machine Spirits as well. They see the Emperor as the one who rules over them all despite their still active role in the daily lives of the Fidea people.
In addition to all of this they also carry various good luck charms to ward off all things caused by evil spirits(who refuse to obey the Emperor and those who serve him, or Chaos Daemons) in life but in death the body is simply an empty shell useless since the spirit within is already with the Emperor.
Their diet is also rather barbaric to some. It consists mostly of Snow Auroch,including Snow Auroch corpses so frozen and frostbitten that not even predators will not touch them, products derived from the Snow Auroch and primitive cave fish kept in farms along underground rivers.
Vegetable material comes mostly from the lichens that are hardy enough to survive the constant winter and mushrooms. Some of the wealthier among them can afford the unique breed of Grox raised on Fidea Prime and the vegetables grown in the aboveground greenhouses.
Despite being a civilian vehicle the Ice Breaker stands at 20 feet high and 30 feet long with an armored hull and carries a front mounted dozer blade. Meant as mass transit they also serve as a work vehicle used to clear snow from the airshafts that provide fresh hair and light into the city below. While they may have had an official name once it's long since been forgotten and is only ever known by the nickname "Ice Beast"
Points of Interest
(go ahead and add your own)
The city of Isafor
The capital of Fidea Prime and its largest city, home to 10,000,000 people, everything important happens here. It sits in a narrow valley ringed by mountains. The only entrance is a narrow pass between two of them which houses the Memorial to the Fallen(see below) and the city's AA and artillery batteries.
The rest of these mountains have since been excavated into large plateaus which serve as training areas for the 44 Regiments of the Fidea Imperial Guard and the planetary PDF. These flattened mountains also serve as the location for Fidea Prime's planetary defenses as any enemy that wishes to take the planet has to take Isafor to do so and the civilians can easily escape to the city on the underground rail network.
As noted above the shafts that bring fresh air and light to the city above are scattered around this valley as well ever at risk of being snowed over requiring a dedicated corps of workers to keep them clear and keep the above ground segment of the city running smoothly. None of this would have possible without their place in the trade network between The Kashidaan Cluster, the Tricamerate Pact and the Kanye Cluster though the Kashidaan Cluster fell to the Tyranids they still trade with these other worlds, though not as much.
While the bulk of the city and what it requires to function are underground. Their single spaceport and the associated trades are powered by a hot spring, the geothermal energy drawn from it also powers communication arrays and greenhouses. All these above ground in large enclosed buildings with lifts that travel down into the city proper.
The Isafor underground is divided into 4 sections, each containing Industry and farming interests. Each section of the city answers to one of the Oligarchs and their aides. The intervening years have left the old tribal alliances meaningless when it comes to rule but the Oligarchy still remains in place as their system of government.
Within the city itself there is the Capital district housing the government buildings and the headquarters of every civil service and the PDF, shared by the 4 Oligarchs. It is also home to the central hub of the underground rail network that was built after the war to serve Isafor and the other settlements on Fidea Prime.
These regions of the city contains factories and the geothermal heating plants that the city needs to survive. Instead of breaking through the surface the smokestacks are redirected along cave walls and ceilings to contain the heat from furnaces and foundries within Isafor.
On the city outskirts lie the vast mushroom farms that feed the city and the millions of Fidea elsewhere. These farms also raise a unique breed of Grox more adapted to cold. However this is more of a luxury item, only the wealthy can afford the variety in food that the common people can't and that the men of the Fidea Imperial Guard are not provided with.
The Memorial to the Fallen
While the bodies of the dead are seen as nothing more than empty shells their names still need to be remembered. To that end the names of all Guardsmen killed in the War to take their system are engraved in the sides of the mountain pass into Isafor under the watchful eyes of the PDF who man the guns that protect the city.
The Iron fields
This mountain valley still houses the wrecks of the original Wel'Kor'cha invasion fleet. Constant bad weather has kept them from clearing the field entirely but efforts are still progressing. The Fidea have no problem with taking and using whatever pieces of Wel'Kor'cha technology they recover they're simply reclaiming it as it was largely based on Imperial technology to begin with.
The Havalst Wall
This frozen waterfall towering more than 300 meters high is by tradition the seat of power for all of Fidea Prime's nature spirits. The site has a small chapel at its base and is a popular site for weddings. The couple can be married in the sight of both Fidea's tribal guardians and the Emperor who rules over them.
An iceberg with a surface area of more than 100 square Kilometers. Large enough to support its own small ecosystem, this area is the source of the Water Worm rumors. A few brave Fidea attempted to explore it, but after the first expedition into the single ice cave failed to return none have ever gone back in. As of the end of the war with the Wel'kor'cha the Fidea Imperial Guard use it as a training area.