The Myrmidons are a successor chapter descended from the Ultramarines, although they have little in common with their legendary founders.
Often seen as dangerous and unpredictable, the Myrmidons carry the savage culture of their homeworld with pride, forming bands of unruly warriors who flank tempered veterans. Ironically their culture makes them more akin to the feral Space Wolves than any Codex adherent chapter.
Originally founded to help the embattled Imperium, they have since been placed as sentries for the sectors surrounding their homeworld in the western Segmentum Pacificus.
The Myrmidons were founded during the late 37th Millennium, when there was a high demand for fresh Space Marine Chapters.
When a particularly wealthy and powerful sector in the western Segmentum Pacificus started an open rebellion, the Imperium found few forces able to answer the call, and the rebels began to gain vast swathes of territory and influence.
Thus were the first Myrmidons tasked with quelling the revolt. The war lasted nine years, and was eventually joined by members of the Assassinorum and Inquisition. The Myrmidons suffered terrible casualties during this era and faced near extinction by the time the capitol city of the Drakkar sector was besieged.
Only with cunning tactics, sheer brutality, sacrifice, and the mass use of available resources, was the revolt quelled.
Shortly after, the Myrmidons were assigned as the sentinels of Drakkar, and it's neighboring sectors. At the edge of Drakkar they found the feral world of Salona which they adopted as their Chapter homeworld and primary recruiting ground.
Salona is a Feral World located at the edges of the Drakkar system. It is predominantly a water world, the majority of landmass being the sunken ruins of a vast continent. These make up "the Chains" a collection of large islands, in close proximity to one another.
Upon the Chains dwell tribes of savage humans simply called Salonians. The harsh mountainous landmasses they dwell upon are too hard for farming, thus many Salonian tribes rely on fishing, cattle-breeding, and mostly on piracy. Indeed piracy is a part of Salonian culture, brigands and bandits form the core warriors of each tribe, and during the calmer seasons they assemble raiding fleets that make war with their neighbors.
Tall, broad, and strong, the Salonians were the perfect specimens to become Space Marines. However, the mass indoctrination of these warlike and feral peoples rapidly changed the Chapter from the Codex adherent force it had once been, to a roving fleet of fighters eager to spill blood and earn glory.
The Eye of Armatus
Far from the Chains, land simply vanishes to vast miles of ocean. Yet this is no simple stretch of sea, for upon the Vast Tide, as it is called, is the Eye of Armatus; a monstrous hurricane that has remained stationary since humans first settled the world untold ages ago. The hurricane shows no signs of stopping, and the ocean turns black and storm-wreathed under it's gales.
The Salonians believe this is a manifestation of the rage of Armatus; the war god, and that deep within, is the realm of the Gods. Many brave, or insane, sailors venture into the dark storm never to return, driven to find the realm of the Gods.
In fact these stories stem from truth in a form. Within the eye of the storm is an island where sits the towering Ebon Citadel, the Fortress Monastery of the Myrmidons. The sailors that land there are taken up to become either Space Marines or begin a life as Chapter Serfs.
The Ebon Citadel
Fortress-Monastery (or simply called the Warlords Hold by the Myrmidons), the Ebon Citadel is a spear of black that stands immovable in the Eye of Armatus. From here the Chapter trains it's recruits and keeps a vigil of the surrounding systems.
Floating directly over the Ebon Citadel is High Station, a space fortress where the Chapter fleet gathers and where battle brothers transfer from the void to Salona and reverse. It is a well-manned battle station that is the first line of defense for the homeworld.
Chapter Culture & Beliefs
Though many of the Chapter tend to be over-eager brawlers, ready to destroy and pillage in the name of humanity, there is a deep level of brotherhood within the Myrmidons that cannot be overlooked.
Each brother sees the Emperor as the War God made manifest, and believe that humanity is destined to rule the stars through violent bloodletting. They are a truly warlike chapter, indeed even fighting Space Marines is something they seem to relish, rather than regret. Taking the heads of enemies considered worthy foes is commonplace, and skulls adorn the armour of many Myrmidon warriors.
The tight tribal bonds of their homeworld are maintained within the chapter, as many squads are formed usually by men from the same tribe. They carry tattoos, or trinkets, and sing the songs and tales from their homelands. However, some of the tribes are bitter enemies, and inter-chapter conflict has been known to occasionally occur. Thus are enemy tribes kept in different companies, fueling rivalry and the hunt for glory and fame, even among battle brothers. As they age however, these old hatreds are forgotten and they eventually unite as Myrmidons, not members of the tribes they once hailed from.
When a brother dies, he is burned on a funeral pyre, his gene-seed and wargear taken for the next initiate, and his name written within the walls of the Ebon Citadel. When a famous or heroic brother dies he is often placed in a tomb within the Ebon Citadel. Myrmidons who have gone on to do great feats have statues erected within the Hall of Heroes in the Citadel. Here, at the head of the columns is a statue of Roboute Guilliman, whom the chapter admires as founder, father, and legendary general.
Myrmidons view the Ecclisiarchy with disdain, seeing them as little more than rabid zealots with no right to say how the Emperor should or should not be worshiped. This has brought them into conflict with such forces as the sisters of battle. This has also brought them closer to humans that worship the Emperor in alternative ways, or have alternative versions of the Imperial Creed, such as the Space Wolves.
When it comes to the Ultramarines and others of Guillimans lineage, they tend to be dismissive, believing their founders and brothers are caught up in petty reforms and bureaucracy, a belief that has the Ultramarines shun the Myrmidons as betrayers of the Codex Astartes and shameful heirs to Roboute Guilliman. This in turn has the Myrmidons view the Ultramarines as arrogant and unworthy heirs of the 13th Legion and the two will rarely assist or even communicate with one another.
Women in Salonian society have a fairer amount of freedom than women in most other primitive cultures. This generally started off with the pirate lords not wanting to raise their daughters as dainty princesses, rather teaching them to hunt and sport alongside their brothers. Though most generally stuck to feminine duties, stories of pirate queens, like the infamous Teuta, are well known in Salonian society. Thus it is not far-fetched for women to occasionally be found as sailors in Salonian crews, some noblewomen even being hailed as captain.
Women who venture to the Ebon Citadel are treated with as much respect as the men, and are often taught the essentials of void ship control and maintenance. Thus a fair few of the Chapter fleets crew tend to be brave warrior women, who now tutor under ship captains and navy instructors. Many have gone on to high ranks within the chapter fleet, and are respectfully called "sisters". At present, all ships of the Myrmidon fleet are commanded by sisters who have left their old lives behind decades ago.
Though the first generation of Myrmidons were Codex Adherent, that rapidly changed when a massive influx of Salonians was required to bring the Chapter back to strength.
Used to theft, piracy, fighting and debauchery, the tribesmen were barely reformed as Adeptus Astartes. The Chaplains managed to convince them of the Emperor being their ancestral God of War: Armatus, thus do many eagerly wish to please the Emperor by slaying the foes of mankind.
Chapter Tactics: Black Templars are used to simulate the Myrmidons, as explained bellow:
A Superstitious Chapter, they generally look dismissively on Librarians, seeing them as wielders of fell-magic. This is not to say that Librarians do not exist within the Chapter, rather that there are extremely few of them, and that most of the Chapter shun them.
Though all initiates spend time as Scouts, they are quickly sorted by their individual temperament, as deemed by the Chaplains. The most calm and precise join the Sniper teams, the most well-balanced become standard Scouts, and the most aggressive and prone to violence join the "Reaver" squads, to learn from hardened warriors first hand.
Upon completion of Scout-hood, Snipers often become devastators, standard Scouts join the Tactical squads, and the Reaver apprentices join the Assault Marine or Reaver squads.
Reaver Squads count as Crusader Squads.
It is customary to elect a brother in each war to become the Emperors Avatar, a manifestation of the Emperor in mortal form. The Avatar is selected from the best fighter among all the gathered Myrmidons, he is given a suit of Artificer armour, and masterfully crafted power weapons to slice through any foe with ease. Though it is seen as somewhat heretical by the Ecclesiarchy, the Myrmidons fight with insane zeal when in the presence of the Emperors Avatar.
Emperors Avatar counts as Emperors Champion.
The Myrmidons wear Ocean-green power armour with black details. They all have a black stripe going down their helmet in homage of the plumes worn by the warriors of their homeworld. The right knee is painted black with the Squad number written upon it in Ocean-green.
Indeed Veterans and leaders frequently sport these plumes and are the only ones allowed to do thus.
Each warrior is a head-hunter, expected to carry the skulls of particularly deadly foes they have slain in battle. This often gives the Myrmidons a barbarous appearance that is off-putting to many Imperial forces.
Statue of Salonian Warrior (right), the Helmet plume has been adopted by Sergeants.
During the reign of the third Chapter Master, the old unremembered symbol of the Myrmidons was changed to the Octopus. In Salonian mythology Octopi are seen as powerful creatures, and as cunning as men. Many Salonian tribes believe that the world is wrapped in the coils of a monstrous Octopus that will one day awaken and crush the world in its grip. Hence it became the symbol of the chapter representing cunning and doom.
(a version of the Chapter Symbol, right)
Testimos - Current Chapter Master of the Myrmidons. Testimos is renowned for his iron demeanor. Although a furious warrior and brutal man, he has the ability to remain calm as ice in deadly situations, and his mastery of strategy is well renowned by Imperial forces that have fought alongside him.
Verzo - Chosen of Armatus. Verzo was considered the greatest Avatar of the Chapter. Since being selected for the rank, he had personally slain over a dozen Ork and Eldar warlords, as well as three Chaos Lords. Verzo eventually found his death at the hands of Kharn the Betrayer himself. His statue is lined within the hall of heroes and his wargear has been maintained and upgraded ever since his burial.
Agron - Master of the Librarians. Though few in number, the Chapter have a small order of Librarians. Agron is a close friend of Testimos, and the two have fought together on many occasions. Generally, he sits with the other librarians of the Chapter in seclusion, attempting to divine courses of action for the Chapter Master.
Myrmidons - The Myrmidons were the men trained and ruled by the Greek hero Achilles. They were extremely skilled and feared fighters, and among the best soldiers of the Trojan War.
Dalmatae - Generally the prime influence for the Chapter (along with the Liburnians). The Dalmatae were a people native to the coastal regions of modern-day Croatia. They were one of the Illyrian tribes, and were regarded as savage, piratical and warlike. The Dalmatae were greatly influenced by neighboring Celtic tribes and Greek colonies. They were among the most aggressive of the Illyrians, fighting many wars with all their neighbors. Eventually they were conquered by Rome, though not before delivering several harsh loses to the Romans.
Liburnians - Another ancient people from the Adriatic coast; the Liburnians were either a Venetic or Illyrian tribe. They were renowned seafarers and pirates and were often threatened by the neighboring Dalmatae. They, along with other Illyrian tribes, pirated Roman traders and fleets, which caused their eventual subjugation by the Roman Empire. They were considered brilliant ship-builders and their raiding ship was adopted by both the Roman and Greek navies.
Salona - Salona was a city belonging to the Dalmatae. It served as a capitol for the Roman Province of Dalmatia.
Armatus - The Dalmatae God of War; akin to Greek Ares and Roman Mars.
Teuta - Queen of the Ardiaei, an Illyrian tribe from modern day Montenegro. Teuta was one of many Illyrian warrior queens, and her acts of piracy sparked the first Roman forays to the east.
Drakkar - Norse Long Ship.