- "Every dog has his day, wouldn't you agree?"
- —Lykus, before decapitating a rival Chaos Lord
Perhaps the first non-Cthonian member of the Black Legion, Lykus is the result of the gene-tampering experiments undertaken by the now deceased Apothecary Hradeggon during the Eye of Terror Slave Wars. In an attempt to bolster the then-Sons of Horus' failing numbers, Hradeggon created perhaps the first "half-breed" Asartes using organs and gene-seed taken from both Loyalist and Traitor Legions alike. The result was Lykus, better known as Lykus the Mongrel, an unhinged Chaos Marine who fought and clawed his way through the Black Legion's hierarchy to become the feared Chaos Lord he is today. Possessed of a keen intellect and a vicious cunning, Lykus has won just as many battles through outsmarting his foes as he has out-fighting them, and yet still remains a pariah amongst the forces of the Black Legion, a fact he takes a bizarre sort of pride in.
In the aftermath of the Horus Heresy, the Sons of Horus had been shattered. Their Primarch slain, their once mighty Legion reduced to only a few companies worth of Marines, what little remained fled into the Eye of Terror to escape the wrath of the vengful Loyalists. Settling on the graveyard world of Maeleum, the Sons of Horus constructed the fortress Lupercalios, entombed their Primarch, and licked their wounds, broken by their defeat.
During this time, the Sons of Horus' gene-stock was beginning to become scarce as the sheer proximity to the warp corrupted battle-brother after battle-brother. Hrageddon, one of the Legion's few remaining Apothecaries, found himself working every day just to ensure a few more years of time for his Legion. The problem was twofold; the Sons' of Horus gene-stock was rapidly becoming unusable, and they had little in the way of recruitment save the wretched slave-stock they had brought with them, and they were even more susceptible to corruption than they were. Hrageddon however, was not about to let the Sons of Horus die out, and formulated a plan that could potentialy save the Legion, or potentialy damn himself in the process. The problem was, he lacked the sufficient implants and gene-stock to go through with his plan.
Surprisingly the answer to that particular problem came in the form of the destruction of the Lupercalios, as the depraved Emperor's Children forced their way into the inner sanctum and made off the Horus' corpse. While at first this seemed to spell the doom of the Sons of Horus, the arrival of Abaddon changed everything. The self-Proclaimed Warmaster of Chaos took the remnants of the Sons and transformed them into the Black Legion, sending them after the Emperor's Children to take their vengeance. Hrageddon was their when the Legion broke into the inner sanctum of Fabius Bile, and to his joy he found exactly what he needed to complete. Organs, implants, and gene-seed taken from both Traitor and Loyalist Legions lined the walls, Hrageddon taking his fair pick of the most suitable implants. Now he had his materials, and all he needed was a test subject...
A Mongrel is Born
- "....Subject is displaying <bzzt> increased dermal outgrowth, most likely a sign of <brrzzzt> genetic rejection. Amputation and skin-grafting shall be necessary.....<muffled screams>"
- —Vox-Recording recovered from the Eye of Terror, Source Unknown
Lykus was the spawn of degenerate slave-stock, just another miniscule part of the teaming masses of unfortunate souls that had accompanied the Sons of Horus into the Eye of Terror. The only thing that made him stand out was the fact that despite having been born and raised on Maeleum, showed no signs of Chaos-induced mutation, a curious trait that attracted Hrageddon's attention. Seeing the young slave as a suitable first candidate for his experiment, Hrageddon took the boy into his makeshift Apothecarion and set to work immediately, beginning the process to transform the child into a fully-fledged Space Marine.
Though the first implantation process was successful, Hrageddon did not have the time to allow the implants to settle within their new host, instead utilizing all manner of ungodly procedures to accelerate the process. The gene-seed implantation was a particular hurdle, as Hraggedon did not have a matching set and was forced to cross-splice the genetic information within two dissimilar gene-seeds. As for Lykus, the process was excruciating to say the least, his body metamorphosing as such a dramatic rate that his increasing musculature was literally bursting from his skin, forcing the Hrageddon to flay new epidermis from other "test subjects" in order to serve as skin grafts, and thus leaving Lykus with a hide of cross-stitched, patchwork flesh. Even worse was the psychological effect the sudden changes had on the young man, though Hraggedon just barely managed to save Lykus' sanity through the painstaking manipulation of his nerve endings, thus somewhat dulling the pain.
Finally, the process was complete. In only nine Terran months time had Hrageddon managed to create a fully-fledged, sleep-trained Astartes from what had once been yet another wretched slave. Proudly presenting his new creation to the Warmaster of Chaos himself, the Apothecary claimed that through this process the Black Legion would flourish, becoming as powerful as they had been during the days of the Great Crusade. Abaddon merely looked upon the Apothecary's newly-made half-breed, drew Drach'nyen, and decapitatied Hrageddon in a single stroke. Disgusted by what the fallen Apothecary had wrought, he then ordered his bodguard to take the "mongrel" Astartes from his sight.
Throughout the entire exchange, Lykus never stopped smiling.
The Fortunate Outcast
With nowhere else to go, Lykus eventually fell in with the Black Legion's forces, specifically becoming a part of the Legion's former 18th Company, or the "Bloody Eighteenth", as most called it. The leader of this warband was a former Cautulan Reaver turned Chaos Lord named Ebor Tallik, a savage and bloodthirsty soul still dead-set in the Legion's old ways, and many of Chaos Marines under his command followed suit. As a result, Lykus became the Company whipping boy from day one, despised simply due to his bastardized gene-heritege. He was ostracized, abused, and in some cases even attacked, yet Lykus never seemed to react to the bullying, always grinning, always seemingly unconcerned with his situation. Some, particularly Tallik, saw this as a provocation to subject Lykus to even more abuse, but even they could not deny that the "mongrel's" tendency to simply take all the punishment, always smiling, was more than a little unnerving...
Of course, Lykus was hardly the first to recieve this treatment, Tallik being an abrasive individual whose' worst traits had only become more predominant since the Legion's fall to Chaos. Aside from a small inner circle (the remains of his old Reaver Squad), the Lord of the Eighteenth had very few friends within the ranks, and even fewer allies. Many wanted him dead, and many had tried, but the only problem was the Luperci. A pack of fearsome daemon-possessed Marines bent to Tallik's, the Luperci served as the Chaos Lord's bodyguards, destorying any who opposed his leadership. As long as the Luperci lived, Tallik reigned supreme, and thus none dared challenge him... until Lykus came along.
(MORE TO COME)
Abilities and Traits
- "I have no love for the Legion. But this, Lykus. He fights like a dog if these reports are correct, which is far more than I have seen from Abbadon as of late. Perhaps this Mongrel is more than the sum of his parts. Regardless, I will see for myself soon enough."
- —Malak Blackspawn voicing his opinion of the Mongrel[src]