- "Ai-ù el bri Kraakhan, Ai-ù el bri Ignika uaê Avakue. Ao atata ko-mangai, Kranuix Ignika. Opu zöi kaman el matau zö Kraakhan. N'ha leso Ignika io avaku whenatu ilatera motru kehnau itramaku pektra. turu-ha shelek mhra krika. Aki'va boh krakhaan."
- —An indecipherable text taken from combat transmissions during Immentra IV campaigns.
The Star Reapers, Avignika or the Maw of the Void are a Space Marine Chapter founded at an unknown date and are suspected successors of the Raven Guard. They are a highly controversial and isolationist chapter, with a history of ruthless brutality. This Adeptus Astartes are experts of lightning fast manoeuvres planned with a detailed complexity unseen in most Space Marine doctrine. Cloaked in a shroud of deliberate mystery and concealment likely created by agents of the Star Reapers themselves, the Chapter hides itself from the prying eyes of institutes such as the Inquisition and even other Chapters considered allies. Indeed, the only beings that know every secret of the Chapter are it's master and the Emperor himself.
While clandestine and reticent, the Reapers seem to display a level of determination towards the seeming betterment of the Imperium, although the extent of this betterment is macabre at best. Despite their pall of black distrust and isolationism, the Star Reapers continue to destroy the enemies of mankind with ruthless precision from the void, only to return into the shadows whence they came.
The pall surrounding the Star Reapers can be traced back to two possible foundings, those being the 3rd or 13th. Records of early history are so riddled with misinformation that nothing can be labeled as fact. Early reports of sable armoured Space Marines answering to no recorded Chapter entering a handful of high priority warzones then disappearing have been noted. Often with the appearance of these Space Marines came incidents of sabotage, mass surrender due to intense psychological tactics or swift, brutal assaults from multiple directions. The earliest reports of these incidents are from 582.M32 and numbered over a dozen, with various degrees of reliability.
Reasons for this inconsistency are numerous. Misidentification is a key hinderance to accurate documentation. The Reapers have often been confused with other Chapters of similar behaviour and iconography, under naming such as the Onyx, Maw of the Void, the Midnight Blades or Ones from Below. Indeed, each variant Chapter maintains a level of savage genius and a profession for relentless coordination. This confusion is likely deliberate, perpetrated by agents of the highest echelons of the Imperium, or the Star Reapers themselves. Interestingly any concrete records before the Syberius IV incident have not only been heavily censored, but wildly contradictory to each other. What is known is that this Chapter is largely derived from those who have had the dubious honour of encountering them in person, Rogue Traders and Explorators and the like.
Return and Syberius IV
While these early reports are little more than rumoured conjecture, a concrete incident can be identified during the 7th Black Crusade, in which a force of "sable armoured Space Marines appeared from the void itself" above the world Syberius IV. This Chapter quickly asserted itself into the war effort under the command of a towering warrior reportedly named Hydraxon, identifying themselves as the Star Reapers. These warriors took to the field alongside the Sons of Orar and Iron Hands Chapters, as well as a handful of Guard regiments. In response to rapid assault by Word Bearers and Night Lords forces, the Star Reapers initiated a counter-attack. Locating the weaknesses of the Chaos battle lines days in advance, the Chapter's scouts isolated key targets, weapons cache's, Night Lords infiltrators, command personnel and vehicular threats. The great offensive did not come then however. Swift raids from small bands of units unknown to the other Chapters present struck seemingly at random. This at first seemed to do nothing but bolster the defences of the Chaos forces, in hindsight it is clear this was a key stage in testing enemy strength and defences. Then, when the Chaos forces prepared to spring a well crafted ambush to catch these hit and run attackers, key anti air defences and power couplings were obliterated by concealed melta charges.
Then the entire Star Reaper's force attacked from three separate directions, obliterating the carefully constructed Chaos defence. High powered Gunships appeared from above and rained death upon the traitors while long concealed infiltrators appeared inside the enemy formations. An armoured spearhead of Predators and Rhinos smashed through sections of the perimeter completely untouched by early raids. Landspeeders cut off outflanking forces and harrowed any attempts at organised response. The entire force was in a state of chaos when the remaining Imperial forces launched the killing strike. With that, the Reapers vanished as suddenly as they arrived. Their forces dived into the void where they appeared. They would resurface on numerous other occasions, seemingly ready to reveal themselves to the Imperium to a greater extent at least. During this period, allies were made with other Chapter's that shared or appreciated similar doctrine or beliefs as the Reapers.
RepercussionsHowever grateful the Imperial forces on Syberius IV were for the assistance of the Reapers, the ever watchful eye of the Inquisition turned to this new anomaly of a Chapter from beyond the Imperium's borders. While multiple Ordo members began their search into the recesses of the Imperial archives, the Reaper's themselves continued cutting an unpredictable swathe through the galaxy. This unusual behaviour oddly counteracts the indirect and clandestine approach almost always adopted by the Chapter. In fact, some evidence suggests this may have been a smokescreen for more convert operations undertaken by diverging companies or small strike forces. After these numerous encounters from one end of the galaxy to the other, the Chapter vanished. However instead of leaving the Imperium entirely, the Reaper's appeared to disperse, materialising seemingly without pattern or reason. While Inquisitorial dispatches remain inconclusive on the exact causes of the Reaper's arrivals and sudden "disappearances", these event did glean clues to the origins, culture and organisation of the Star Reapers. Given the convoluted history of the Chapter, it is likely these Inquisitorial dispatches remained inconclusive only to the wider knowledge of the institution. In fact, several Ordo members reported Star Reapers files being censored at levels of clearance relating to other Ordos, some not even existing in the current Imperium. Primary Ordos investigating into the Chapter currently consist of primarily the Hereticus and Chronos, but individual Inquisitors have made a hobby of doggedly shadowing the Chapter.
The Star Reapers have been involved in numerous conflicts, some even well documented. Unfortunately like much of Imperial History, the accounts of battle are fragmented, incomplete or unreliable. None the less, some notable or somewhat reliable accounts do exist.
(C.M32) The Purge of Harran: Harran was a Hive World on the northern border of Segmentum Obscurus, a world governed with strict and eagle eyed vigilance by its leaders. While this oppressive rule was efficient in simply delivering Imperial tithes, it was less effective in controlling the loyalty of the populace. Due to this, underground Chaos cults were a ever present threat to the stability of the entire region. While minor uprisings were not uncommon, a cult known as the Serpents Hand gained a heavy level of influence and began instigating ever bolder attacks against the unprepared governance. Both Arbites forces and the Raptors Chapter had attempted to eliminate heads of the cult, or the cult in it's entirety, but to no avail. The chaotic machinations of the Serpents Hand came to a head when seemingly out of the shadows of every street corner came the Chaos Space Marines. Within a night, the bloody handed warband known as the Jormungandr, largely made up of Alpha Legion and Night Lords, brought the world to its knees. The savage attack crippled the world and soon the chaos spread to other worlds in the Harran system. The warbands leader, Sardari, crowned himself Lord of Harran. However, before this barbarian could consolidate his new conquests, something went wrong. Traitor posts on the borders of Sardari's new dominion began to fall silent, with desperate pleas for help, mercy or other such concepts. Soon after strange onyx ships appeared above the orbit of Harran Secondus, a large, heavily armoured voidship armed to the teeth graced with strange and disturbing iconography. Observing the ship with curiosity, Sardari ordered his forces to hold fire. He wished to see what this anomaly would do next. The anomaly did not disappoint, raining fire upon the planet. The world of Harran Secondus was consumed in a blaze of unrelenting and brutal hatred raining from beyond the clouds. In his throne on Harran, Sardari simply smiled. With the decimation of their worlds forcing them to rally, the Jormungandr secured Harran, preparing ambushes, stationary defences and organising armoured columns to obliterate their foes in the cramped streets. With these heavy fortifications and meticulously thought out plans, the Chaos forces would be prepared for any foe. When the Star Reapers arrived, they did so from every direction. Cadres of Reaper forces attacked from the sky, drop pods and teleported squads striking into the heart of the Jormungandr. Night Stalkers rained death from the skies while Outrider squads back with Vindicators and Rhinos tore through the streets. At the fore, Hydraxon himself struck the throne of Sardari with his Guard, tearing through the Night Lords bodyguards and ripping Sardari apart. It is said that the mad Tyrant laughed the whole time. Despite the loss of their leader and their routing from Harran, the Jormungandr as a whole survived, taking many a Star Reaper into the void whence they came. The bloodying of both forces created a long line of hatred that exists to the latter years of M41.
(unknown date) Destruction of Pental: Pental was a Necron Tomb World covered in ever shifting sands and inhabited by only small pockets of hardy survivalist clans. However, the Necron Dynasty buried below soon rose, utterly exterminating the inhabitants of the planet and beginning the process to convert the surface into the Necron world beneath. Unusually, instead of simply purging the planet with orbital bombings, the Star Reapers 3rd Kra Helyrx descended onto the planet in force, infiltration, hit and run tactics or sabotage deep behind enemy lines being the key strategies. However, the Necron Lord soon became aware of this anomaly in his world and mustered his full might to quash the threat. So it was the Necron forces hunted the Reapers for 100 solar hours, playing a deadly game of cat and mouse that would climax on the Bul Plateau. It was here the Reapers fought their foes of living metal head on, standing as a bulwark as their brothers evacuated to the heavens above. Finally, when only Nujuk and his Voidwrath guardians remained, the Necron Lord surfaced. In a brutal battle Nujuk laid low the fiendish Lord, rending his torso in two with his power scythe. But the death of their lord only served to embolden the Necron's relentless advance. As their gauss beams cut down Nujuk's guards and tore his flesh, a series of sudden, catastrophic explosions shook the planet. As if from the Necrons very own shadows, unmarked and bolt pistol armed Space Marines appeared and tore into the living steel army. The Harrowed squad had placed melta charges at the very core of the Tomb Worlds systems, causing tectonic upheaval so great the entire surface of the planet became a molten hellscape. Nujuk and his remaining guards were saved that day as the Harrowed fell on those grounds, a testament to the tenacity of their craft.
(C.M35) Bluestone Massacre: Bluestone is a barren Dead World on the rim of the Veiled Region and the sight of a brutal conflict between two sub-company sized forces of Star Reapers and their eternal Jormungandr foes. Explorators located the remains of this carnage during 635.M35 but were unable to determine the exact date of the event. What could be determined was that these forces apparently fought in a conventional manner, quite unusual considering their preferred strategic styles. Corpses with horrific wounds, missing limbs or even locked in their death struggles were visible. The Reapers themselves refused to acknowledge the event.
(624-627.M35) Hunting of the Serpent: This period marked a series of vicious clashes between the Reapers and the Jormungandr, assumedly encompassing the Bluestone massacre in addition to a number of minor skirmishes.
(378.M36) Age of Apostasy, Terran Crusade: While still unconfirmed, reports of "dark reflections of our brothers, from beyond the blackest void" participating in this event have been voiced by various members of involved Chapters.
(811.M37) 7th Black Crusade, Syberius IV
(873.M38) Skopios Incident: An early encounter with a possible Necron force results in the destruction of Skopios base by an Imperial strike force, with reports of Space Marines from a Chapter known as "the Onyx" appearing to assist the war effort.
(328.M39) The Angevin Crusade: During the Imperial effort to claim the region of space known as the Calyx Expanse, the Star Reapers initiated a bloodying of several worlds in the area, striking crucial disabling blows against multiple defenders of the region. This thankless duty assisted greatly in achieving compliance with fewer losses. A notable encounter was with a Xenos empire now lost from record, in which the Star Reapers slaughtered the occupants of three ships, broadcasted the event to the xenos capital, then launched the ships into the planet itself using precise short fuse torpedos. In the wake of this terrifying spectacle came the Reapers drop pods, Night Stalkers and Thunderhawks. The Reapers drop pods landed in the centre of the Xenos cities, while armoured columns tore across the lands between, obliterating any attempt at resistance. It is said that the Lord of the Harrowed subjugated a city himself using purely fear as his weapon. When these planets had been laid to waste, Hydraxon oversaw Exterminatus on the home planet Colm'cha. After the planet was laid to waste, the Reapers left before the forces of the Crusade arrived.
(678.M39) Karda-Avaku, the Heart Star: This event in the history of the Reapers is one most misunderstood by the wider Imperium. During this time period, the Star Reapers appeared to be at war with an unknown Xenos force. While the majority is left to conjecture, evidence suggests that the Reapers had been at war with these creatures long before they officially re-entered the Imperiums borders. Stubbornly and almost violently rejecting any Imperial assistance, the Reapers fought a brutal war around a location known by Imperial charts as the Sikalom Cluster, itself located beyond the borders of the Imperium. It can be determined this area is of the utmost importance to the Star Reapers, judging by their fervour, although for reasons unknown. It is possible it is a region of immense spiritual significance, as numerous Star Reapers make reference to the Karda-Avaku, or heart star. Regardless of it's significance, the zone is mostly avoided by the bulk of Imperial forces. Strong links to the cultural origins of the Star Reapers can be gleaned from this, with the Xenos force inhabited the same region of space linked to the conception of the Reaper language. The exact details of their relationship with the Reapers and the current inhabitants are likely lost to time.
(272.M40) The Swathe: After a rebellion by a cluster of planets on the border of the Eastern Fringe, The Reapers appeared and swiftly raged across the entire zone. Slaughtering rebels, bloodying every planet and reaping a hefty bounty. Reports of Hive cities bombed into states of permanent darkness, summary executions and other horrific punitive actions. The Reapers disappeared, leaving a wake of terror and destruction. Later, the Ultramarines 2nd Company appeared to find the cluster in ruins and a generation worth of tributes and resources vanished along with the Astartes who claimed them.
(589.M40) Scouring of Mehna: During this two year long conflict, the Death Templars, Star Reapers and Black Dragons all converged upon the world of Mehna. Overrun by a horde of Orks allowed to grow in the underbelly of the city, the local PDF were quickly slaughtered as the greenskins trampled across the planet. The Reapers themselves were on the tail of a Freeboota Kaptin known as Teefstompa, and happened across the warzone on their hunt.
(884.M40) Empyrean's Wrath: The Space Hulk known by the Imperium as the Empyrean's Wrath was crewed by an incredibly immense horde of Orks. This green skinned powder keg floated through the limitless confines of space and survived from the ships and planets it encountered. To large in size to simply be bombarded to pieces by anti ship weapons, the only solution was to board and manually cleanse the interior. After attempts were made by the Flesh Tearers and Salamanders to purge the giant hulk, a combined force of the two Chapters moved to attack and finally destroy it. The courageous Astartes entered the Hulk expecting heavy resistance, but instead they found the greenskins in a panic. Moments beforehand, a cadre of Star Reapers had boarded the ship and were slaughtering the greenskins. Upon coming into direct contact with the forces commander, a towering figure named Hydraxon, the three Chapters initiated a coordinated three pronged attack into the bowels of the structure. With the bloody slaughter of the Flesh Tearers and Star Reapers matched with the cleansing fires of the Salamanders, the Astartes seemed unbeatable. When they entered the inner sanctum and the lair of the warboss, the situation changed. The Salamanders and Flesh Tearers arrived first like twin whirlwinds of fire and blood. Their fury was halted only by the Warboss and his strongest Orks. While the swift assault became a grind of attrition, the Reapers were nowhere to be found. Then, as both Ork and Space Marine were bloodied and battered, the Reapers emerged. Hydraxon crashed through the wall behind the warboss and set upon him, while the Blacklight teams who'd been carefully waiting in ambush on the rafters above revealed themselves with hails of bolter fire. While the Hulk was finally cleansed, the Salamanders and Flesh Tearers could never quite shake the feeling the Reapers may never have arrived to assist them, had the tide turned.
(unknown date.M41) M'yen Mont'au: A battle between the Reapers and the forces of the Tau around the world of Montai. Imperial craft had dropped out of the warp unexpectedly, hovering over a newly colonised Tau world like a menacing bird of prey. The Tau commander Shas'O Kais, a veteran of the Kronus conflicts with the Blood Ravens, drew from his experience fighting Space Marines and prepared accordingly. The first action would be to attack this lone ship, which was presumed to be a scout. Being out of range of ground based orbital defences, the Tau's ships moved to hit it directly. Strangely, the ship appeared close to harmless, simply drifting on low power with heavy exterior damage. The only trace of life was a strange signal playing over and over, oddly in the Tau's own language. The message itself was a call for help, a desparate cry for relief, followed by a dire warning. "the terror, they are coming." The ship then dissapeared. The already unnerved Tau forces strengthened their defences, providing a orbital blockade to compliment the heavy defences on the ground. Suddenly, Shas'O Kais lost contact with the orbiting ships. Long range scanners indicated they were all unmoved and intact, but no signals were transmitted. Then the ships spoke, but not in the dialect of the Tau. A singular repeating chant echoed in the Taus minds as the light of the planet went out. Unknown ships arrived in orbit and launched strange missiles down to the planet. These missiles caused strange gases to enter the atmosphere, blocking out the sun with deep, smothering clouds. Electrical lightning storms graced the skies, several bolts striking the ground. To the horror of the Tau, from these bolts came sable armoured Space Marines, covered in chilling, swirling markings and spitting howling death from their bolters. Shais O'kais was quick to counterattack, organising his men into firing lines and unleashing hails of plasma at their new foes. Every shot directed at the spectral foes never met its mark, then the true storm struck. It was said that the lightning twisted to form nightmarish icons in the sky as the entire Space Marine force struck from every conceivable direction. The ghosts struck with a savage speed, ripping through the Tau in bloody ruthlessness. Then the storm ceased, and the Star Reapers vanished. When the smog choking the sky lifted, only Shas'O Kias and his command squad remained, surrounded by the mutilated remains of his force.
(682-670.M41) Felic War: An area key to the supply lines of several war efforts, the Felic cluster consisted of a number of important worlds. These included the home planets of the Righeous Sons and Rift Warriors Chapters, the Forge World Felic Proctor and the Holdfast moonbase. Much to the detriment of connected war efforts, the system declared its independence from Terra's rule and seized control of the supply lines passing through the area. After losing contact with both Space Marine Chapters in the region, external forces were notified. To crush the new opposition, the Sons of Orar dispatched its 3rd Company, only to find their Strike Cruiser limping back with dire news. The regional Space Marine Chapters and the Forge World had added their forces to this rebellion, and were staged to defend any attack. So it was the Sons of Orar and Murdering Sons arrived, under the command of Sons of Orar's very own Chapter Master Alavaan. Alavaan prepared a plan to slowly constrict Felic Primaris in a tight noose, taking the key outer systems first then moving forwards. The entire campaign would last for eight bloody years involving many more Chapters and Chaos forces, the Star Reapers among the Imperial reinforcements. The Reapers themselves were responsible for atrocities such as the bloodying of the Serenity jungle words, the destruction of Felic Proctor and siege of Felic Primus.
(883.M41) Murder of Artrek: This event revolved around the elimination of the Dark Eldar Archon Artrek, during a raid on the civilised world Ounce. According to the interrogation reports of the survivors the entire Kabal was decimated by five Astartes in unmarked armour.
(955-957.M41) Immentra IV Campaign: Immentra is a system of highly militarised planets, including the artificial world of Immentra I. This immense military power makes it both a common target for raiding and a reliable bulwark against these constant assaults. While the system was resilient, it was not invulnerable. After a particularly vicious raid by the nefarious Jormungandr, An Ork WAAAGH led by Warboss Skulldakka swept across the system in a matter of weeks. Crushing the weakened defences and laying the worlds to waste. Imperial response was swift and direct, with forces from the Calaxan Outlaw Guard, Salamanders and many others. The conflict was entering its second year when the Reapers 3rd and 5th Kra-Helyrx arrived. Swiftly integrating themselves into the line forces, the Reapers were instrumental in tearing apart the Ork's armoured corps and purging the Ork Roks used as their bases. The Nui-ta in command, Mutran, was key in planning the re-capture of the Hive Immentra Primus and the assassination of Weirdboy Sidesplitta.
(999.M41) The Trial of Reapers: With the galaxy in flames and the end time drawing near, the Reaper's vanished. Every single force from all points in the Galaxy converged to a singular point, the very same Karda Avaku they had fought around for years prior. The Reapers then simply disappeared, lifting above the galactic plane and into the void. The exact cause of this is unknown, but various sources refer to a time of judgement, a "trial of the soul". This has no mention of broad destruction or salvation, but is simply a crucible with unknown ramifications. What is known is that the Reaper's themselves may never return after this campaign is done.
Chapter OrganisationThe few records that exist on the Star Reapers show that they are Fleet based, although some sources have named a number of home worlds they may have settled on for a time. This fleet based nature suggests that they have a fundamentally different, if not unique, structure from that of modern Codex Astartes chapters. Star Reapers companies appear to mainly consist of a scouting force made up of experienced, fully armoured marines as oppose to the modern scouts. These marines bear minimal heraldry and operate as a fusion of modern scouts and tactical marines, known as "Kul-ka" or simply "Shades". A dedicated body of veterans for each company is also present, indicating that the Star Reapers likely eschew typical 1st and 10th company organisations as per the Codex Astartes. These veterans can be seen using Terminator Armour to engage in spearheads, teleportation strikes and serve as bodyguards to their Companies Captain. Open channel vox from offsite commander transmissions relating to "Voidwraiths" have been intercepted as these units enter the field. Assault Squads (labeled Z'ra-ka, or Ghost squads in various instances) are largely unchanged, using hit and run and seem to have an sister unit similar to Destroyer Squads of old. However these units (labelled the Harrowed) are designed for adaptable shock tactics or assassinations. A unit almost identical to modern devastators are also present, but this unit (The Goryst-ka) operates by infiltrating into a desired position then providing a surprise bombardment when least expected. In addition, these squads carry compact and unorthodox heavy weapons, designed to allow for mobility. While Blacklight teams fill the roles of the Sternguard, it is unknown wether or not Vanguard units exist or wether they're integrated into Voidwrath or Assault squads. Companies themselves are often referred to as Kra-Helyrx, with varying suffix's to distinguish them, similar to the numbering of companies used by Codex chapters. From what is known, there are 8 "standard" Kra-Helyrx as well as the Harrowed and Blacklight Cadres. While the Harrowed and Blacklight maintain their separate companies, singular (usually) Voidwrath squads are mixed throughout each, serving as bodyguards or the powerful spearhead. Each Kra-Helyrx carries its own separate "totem", commonly adorning the gauntlets of a Star Reaper. Oddly, each company appears to have a highly adaptable balance of Squads, with no set distribution. Having said that, clear differences between the companies in terms of personality, and to a certain extent tactical preference, can be seen in combat.
The exact numbers the Chapter possesses is entirely up to speculation. Some reports number their forces at less then 900, others closer to 1500. As with most records, these are likely subjected to direct tampering. In addition due to the fluidity of the Reaper's company structure exact deposition is likely in constant flux. Because of this, Imperial researchers have simply taken to marking out commanders and attaching the amount of Astartes commonly at their back.
|Title||Commander||Estimated Force Deposition|
|The Reaper's Guard (Ignika Mangai)||Hydraxon||1 Elite Voidwrath squad.|
|Voidwraths (Titavka-ka)||Unknown, likely Hydraxon or Takamangai||est 8 Voidwrath squads.|
|Librarius (Iden-Helyrx)||Teridax||Unknown number, est between 8-11. Often attached to companies|
|Reclusiam (Darhk-Helyrx)||Pridva||10 Chaplains|
|Armoury (Kesbol'va-Helyrx)||Unknown||est 10-14 Techmarines, Unknown|
|Apothecarion (Kestora-Helyrx)||Chiriox||est 9-13 Apothecaries, Unknown|
|1st Kra-Helyrx, The Reaper's Maw (Ignika Ir-kav)||Nui-ta Tapaka||5 Kul-ka squads
3 Z'ra-ka squads
2 Goryst-ka squads
|2nd Kra-Helyrx, The Bladed Star (Bol'vek Avaku)||Nui-ta Wuhkii||6 Kul-ka squads
2 Z'ra-ka squads
2 Goryst-ka squads
|3rd Kra-Helyrx, The Punishers (Cadunka)||Nui-ta Nujuk||5 Kul-ka squads
2 Z'ra-ka squads
3 Goryst-ka squads
|4th Kra-Helyrx, Unknown Translation (Icara Miserix)||Nui-ta Lesokrai||4 Kul-ka squads
5 Z'ra-ka squads
1 Goryst-ka squad
|5th Kra-Helyrx, The Void's Protectors (Tiil Mangai)||Nui-ta Segol||4 Kul-ka squads
3 Z'ra-ka squads
3 Goryst-ka squads
|6th Kra-Helyrx, The Silent Fangs (Shelek Ir-vä)||Nui-ta Noxilos||7 Kul-ka squads
1 Z'ra-ka squad
2 Goryst-ka squads
|7th Kra-Helyrx, The Guiding Stars (Destrali Avaku)||Nui-ta Koltau||6 Kul-ka squads
2 Z'ra-ka squads
2 Goryst-ka squads
|8th Kra-Helyrx, Unknown Translation (Avokii Muakata)||Nui-ta Vrika||3 Kul-ka squads
4 Z'ra-ka squads
4 Goryst-ka squads
|The Harrowed (Ko-Helyrx)||Kranuix Koleso||Unknown number of Harrowed squads, est 5-7|
|Blacklight cadre (Kra'yrupu-Helyrx)||Unknown, likely Sarda||est 4-6 Blacklight kill-teams|
Chapter wargear and vehicular assets also appear unorthodox in nature and use. The starships operated by the Chapter are widely varied in origin and design, suggesting the Chapter is either very old or uses whatever it can. In addition, occasional refitted civilian ships have reportedly been used by Star Reaper forces to enter specific war zones unnoticed. This strangeness carries over to the equipment of individual marines, where some Space Marines can be seen with weapons and armour ranging from Heresy to modern era. Maximus armour helmets and Tigrus pattern boltguns have been seen fused with Godwyn bolt pistols and Corvus era pauldrons. Wargear for high ranking marines can be traced back to ages past, and often is of controversial origins.
Absences can be seen in the forces of the Star Reapers as well, such as Techmarines and Apothecaries. It is likely these specialists remain with the fleet, as they are vital to the continued survival of the Chapter. Oddly, neophytes are also seemingly absent from the Star Reapers forces, with the role of Scouts being fused into the entirety of the Reaper's doctrine. While it is known Devastator marines are the commonly youngest and least experienced of the Reaper's, they are well past the stage of neophyte commonly reserved for a Scout. It is suspected the neophytes are trained while the Fleet is in deep space, then serve among their seasoned counterparts after a specific point. In terms of iconography, the Star Reapers eschew typical symbols and honour markings in favour of discrete and often mystifying markings indicating various unit placements or designations. These markings, unlike the simple stripes and skulls of their counterparts, are often complex totemistic windings from pauldron to gauntlet. strange, easily missed markings can often appear on the helmets or greaves of the Star Reapers, and some battle brothers have been seen with strange, winding markings upon their skin. It is possible these markings have memetic properties that alters viewer perception, as no completely uniform markings have been recognised.
Specialist Ranks and Formations:
The Harrowed: A number of sources indicate the Star Reapers carry a force in their midst similar to that of Legion era Moritats or Destroyer Squads, moving as shock troops and assassins as small groups or simple individuals. To these doomed individuals fall the most dishonourable and tainted arts. Chemical warfare, terror tactics and much worse were simply some of the acts these individuals undertook. Commonly carrying with dual Bolt or Plasma Pistols, compact Missile Launchers, radiological or nuclear armaments or various other forbidden or exotic armaments. These individuals are often distanced from the bulk of Star Reaper's units, clad in near completely unmarked armour and bearing their dark reputation even among those outside of the Chapter. The Harrowed are also named Koleso-Ka.
Voidwraith Kill Squads: These units appear to be the veterans of the Chapter, striking directly at the heart of a foe with either Jump Pack or Terminator Armour. Commonly seen in the vanguard of an assault or alongside a Line Commander, these Voidwraiths are deployed with bloody close quarters in mind. While ranged items are not uncommon, the armaments selected by these warriors are often complimentary to power weapons. The Chapter Master Hydraxon himself commands five elite Voidwraiths in his retinue, the Ignika Mangai.
Blacklight Teams: While the Wraiths focus on brutal close combat from an unexpected quarter, Blacklight teams take the opposite route. Veterans from Shade units, the Blacklight teams are tasked with missions such as tank hunting, infantry eradication, execution of important targets on the front lines and the like. Blacklight teams are formed from marines displaying traits of marksmanship, coordination and initiative. Despite similarity in their roles, Star Reapers of Blacklight units are distinctly different from the Harrowed and object violently at comparison. Blacklight Astartes have also been located serving as veteran sergeants for Shade units on multiple occasions.
Comet pattern Land Speeder: The Star Reapers Comet speeder is essentially a heavier version of a Land Speeder Storm, designed to deploy small Shade squads or Harrowed behind enemy lines or into key positions with minimal attention. This vehicle mirrors the construction of the basic Land Speeder Storm, with the exception of having stronger grav drives to carry Astartes in power armour. The vehicle also boasts a heavy bolter and Cerberus launcher.
Night Stalker pattern gunship: This exoatmospheric gunship is a heavily modified, modern variant of the Fire Raptor gunships of the Great Crusade. Boasting twin linked Assault Cannons on ball turrets located on the sides of the vehicle, as well as nose mounted heavy plasma cannon, the Night Stalker gunship provides a hybrid of close fire support and rapid strikes against a foe, perfectly supporting the viciously fast combat of a Star Reapers force.
Nuakehnau pattern drop ship: Bridging the gap between Thunderhawk and Stormraven, the Nuakehnau is a drop ship design similar to that of a Storm Eagle, but radically different in key functions. Boasting not only heavy armour but shielding similar to that of a Contemptor Dreadnaught, this craft works as both atmospheric and vacuum bound transport through the toughest conditions. To compliment the discrete deployment methods of the Reapers, this craft has dampened engine emissions and a special coating that reflects detection signals and light itself, allowing it to remain visibly undetected as well as unseen by radar or similar methods. This versatility and high transport capacity unfortunately sacrifices firepower, and the vehicle is only armed with light missiles.
Command Ranks and Heirachy:
Nuix-ta: The equivalent position of Chapter Master, held by Hydraxon
Nuix: High commanders, subservient only to Hydraxon. This includes the equivalent positions of Master Apothecary, High Chaplain, Chief Librarian and Master of Forge. The Lord of Harrowed and the Takamangai are also present in this category.
Nui-ta: A position paralleling Captain, the Nui-ta has absolute control over their assigned Kra-Helyrx. Each Nui-ta also bears their own title and company title, similar to the functions of Master of Fleet or Master of Flag in Codex compliant Chapters.
Nui: The lowest command rank, the Nui is in all essence a squad sergeant. There is no title distinction between veteran and non veteran sergeants known, and it's possible only veterans are granted a Nui rank.
Combat DoctrineThe Star Reapers doctrine both in strategic and tactical scenarios promotes smart, rapid movement over direct brute force. While more conventional tactics have been used by the Star Reapers, the Chapter operates on its own terms in most of its engagements. Reconnaissance and infiltration was the first major step in any engagement. These scouts would disappear from knowledge of any force, including that of the Reaper's themselves it seems, for extended periods. Probing attacks by fast assault units are then initiated. Fast probing assault by Landspeeders, close air support, light armour or infantry strike teams would test the strength of an enemy, sometimes drawing out and eliminating targets. When a weakness would present itself, an overwhelming and completely unexpected blow would cripple the opponent. While Star Reapers forces appear to be light on heavy armour, an unexpected use of vehicles such as modified Predators, Vindicators and Land Raiders do make their appearances in their assaults. These vehicles provide the "surprise sledgehammer" behind the expectations of a swift knife. In these multi vector offensives, heavy armour is supported by shock troops such as Terminators and other infantry units geared towards fast assault. While devastating, this offensive is ultimately but a distraction from the hidden force that attacks from a completely different angle.
In a strange contrast to the calculated nature of the total offensive, the Reaper's individually fight with an almost bestial controlled savagery. Unusually this "beserker" state only manifests in some cases, or can be brought upon by extreme stress, possibly even at the will of the Astartes themselves. According to information gleaned from Deathwatch Apothecaries, this state is directly related to the mutations of their gene seed. The matching of controlled savagery with the multidimensional, baffling tactical plans creates a powerful combination.
While this method of war is proven effective, it is not foolproof. When an opposing force has the upper hand over the Reaper's forces, contingency plans are enacted. While the primary method of initiating an assault is systematic and ordered, backup plans can be exotically varied and erratic. These methods can vary from crippling sabotage or long range or orbital bombardment to psychological warfare or simply fading away to looking for a new weakness, then striking with renewed vigour at that single point. While some Chapters would operate using encrypted channels or in complete silence, the Reapers take the opposite approach. Broadcasting hefty lingual memetic kill agents among their transmissions to discourage unwanted listeners, they further confound their foes by broadcasting multiple signals, all laced with these kill agents and using their own unique dialect.
Chapter Beliefs and CultureThe Star Reapers appear to value intelligence, adaptability and skill over concepts such as honour or individual strength. While the Chapter encourages each Astartes to master every art of its doctrine, including that of mental individuality, a strong emphasis of operating as a squad and to a greater extent company is present. Each company itself operates independently, using this decentralised command structure to great effect. While seemingly giving no consideration to honour, the Star Reapers are not without pride. On a number of occasions individuals of great authority of distinguished figure have been isolated on the field, bearing unusual decorative markings or answering to unique titles. Likewise the rugged survivability of both the gear of a warrior and the warrior himself were remarkable. Most individual marines carried small, unusual scrimshaw talismans or totems depicting icons such as fanged maws, winged skulls, myriads of curved blades or serrated stars. Intricate line workings graced the armours and weapons of marines, graced with similar iconography. The attentive primitivism is at sharp contrast to the incredible strategic skill noted in combat. In contrast to these markings of esteem, other traditions of a darker nature have been observed. Those who have committed a crime against the Chapter worthy of death are often marked, commonly with two bleached gauntlets. This appears to signify the eventual state of the condemned. Absence of markings is considered a similar punishment, but resulted in Harrowed induction.
Oddly, the Star Reapers do not venerate the Emperor with the fervour of some other Chapters, seemingly acknowledging him as the leader of mankind but little more. In fact, there appear no real characters of reverence among the Chapter. The closest individuals to be declared as revered would be Hyrdaxon and his two "aides". Despite this, all figures in power are treated with a high respect. Judging by the common themes in language and titles, strong ideologies of death, spiritualism and the nature of the void are heavily ingrained into the Chapter's culture. Some Astartes of the Chapter have revealed anomalous rites involving the soul and the void being integral to the beliefs of the Star Reapers.
In terms of common personality traits, dark humour and a sense of cynical fatalism are common among Reapers. This is not mutually exclusive to their common silent gravitas, but compliments it. A second oddity is their common distain for sadism, despite their viciousness in combat. The Reapers seem to detach themselves from emotion during such slaughter, likely a side effect of their gene mutations.
In relation to the absence of neophytes in the forces of the Reapers, records have suggested a common tradition of sorts directly related to the training of new Astartes. At seemingly random times, the Death World of Umbra VI is descended upon by "Onyx titans from beyond the sky". Upon this world, what are surely neophytes of the Chapter are released. While it is unknown what the exact details of these rites of passage are, various tales from the lore of the feral survivalists inhabiting the planet speak of "great warriors slaying the Uhell käta (dormant dragon is the closest gothic translation.) and ascending into the sky". While neophytes are required to slay only the youngest of the beasts with a variety of weaponry, ascendency to a rank of Captaincy requires not only the slaying but flensing of the beast, with the skull being a common trophy retrieved from the event. This event is commonly undertaken with only the most basic of equipment, usually with minimal offensive capabilities. The flensing of these beasts is not a simple collection of trophies however, with the bones taken utilised in complex rites to draw the powers of the soul. The Reapers themselves have said little on the nature of these rituals, but some speculate that they draw the psychic essence of the creature to gain immense power.
While seemingly fleet based, the Star Reapers do communicate through a language unknown to Imperial scribes. While it does not directly match any records of current civilisations, ancient dialects from a now destroyed planet named Infernales Nocterra are exceedingly similar. It is possible the earliest Star Reapers were recruited from the planet before its destruction. Records of why the planet is now ruins are fragmented, pointing to an ancient civilisation of biomechanical xenos and a great cataclysm caused by the hostilities agains rival clans with human involvement. It is possible these humans formed the foundations of the Reapers themselves, or some other force dating back to possibly the Great Crusade. Using the records of this language, some words spoken by Star Reapers have been translated.
|Kra||prefix meaning shadow||Kraakhan||shadow, darkness|
|Khiara||rapid, fast||Cadunka||agent of punishment|
|Rahai||menace, scourge||-ka||suffix meaning spirit|
|Sanok||accuracy||Z'ra||attack directly, assault|
|Kui Ya||to cut, stab||Jefo||Ability|
|Nui-ta||great leader, Captain||Ai||he/she/it|
|Boh||vigilance, watchful||Kaman||apprentice, learner|
|Darhk||Judge||Par||prefix meaning strong|
|Ko||prefix meaning doomed||Ti||space, void|
|Piruk||scout||Z'ri||to plan, attack with strategy|
|Avaku||star||N'ha||lone, single, one|
|Kehnau||ghost, phantom||Leso||wanderer, exile|
|Iapu||ally, friend||Tara||warrior, fierce|
|Tavka||savage, bestial||Kahu||cloak, mantle|
|Pahu||armour||Goryst||heavy storm, hurricane|
|Ignika||reaper, harvester||Pektra||enemy, foe|
|Vali||warning||Uir||prefix meaning crucial|
|Ehlek||welcome, greetings||Niqu||criminal, scum|
|Iauta||brother, close friend||bri-||prefix meaning the|
|Dekar||cry of distress||Kui tuha||to fear, to be afraid|
|Kestora||twister of flesh||Kesbol'va||twister of steel|
While details regarding the gene seed of the Star Reapers are largely unforthcoming, due to their isolationist secrecy, limited information on their heritage has been gleaned from a number of sources. The visage the the Reapers themselves is a clue, with most having a strangely muted pallor of their original skin tone. Oddly, the Chapter also all share eyes of liquid bronze, which gradually deepens into a complete black with age. Despite these obvious mutations, the Star Reapers gene seed is largely pure in biology. However, evidence of unusual psychological demeanour can be found from observation of the Reapers behaviour both before and during their operations. Disregarding the minor obsessions with scrimshawed iconography, certain marines display traces of paranoia, self destructive and psychopathic tendencies.
While originally considered a biological trait, the beserker state various Astartes of the Chapter can enter seems to be psychological in nature. During moments of extreme stress Star Reapers enter a trance-like state, disregarding preservation of self and fighting with a silent, savage determination. This state of stress is temporary, lifting when any threat the afflicted Astartes is aware of vanishes. This strange, bloody ennui can be linked to the conception of the Harrowed, and most Reaper's afflicted enter their ranks. The Astartes themselves view falling victim to this phenomena in a negative light, seeing it as a detriment to the survival of brothers in the field. The following induction to the Harrowed is akin to a death sentence, with members assuming the title of Koleso-Ka, or doomed wandering soul in typical Gothic speech.
In this field the effects of the Chapter's isolation and avoidance of Imperial contact are most obvious. The fleet is extensive but highly inconsistent in makeup, with many of the ships being ancient or scavenged. In either case many ships have undergone extensive repairs and modifications. While most Chapter's follow the Crusader pattern in terms of naval makeup, similar to the ways of the old Legions, the Star Reapers pattern is entirely unknown. What is known is that the fleet drops into real space only to pursue targets easily disabled or destroyed without endangering the larger fleet itself. Oddly, the fleet itself is quite large but typical Space Marine ships are a minority. The majority of ships in the fleet are from widely different origins and time periods, sometimes having origins from Rogue traders, other Space Marine chapters or ages of man long since forgotten.
Known Ships:Alaxara (Orion class Battleship) - The Alaxara serves as the Star Reapers fortress-monastery and flagship. While due to extensive repairs and modifications the original design is barely distinguishable, records cite this as a Orion class experimental Battleship of origin during the latter years of the Great Crusade. While the internal functions are entirely unknown, the exterior modifications are clearly visible. Extensive modifications to the engines and Void shield power has been observed, and the ships armouries are both varied and unorthodox. Most notable of these is the abundance of Vortex Torpedos and a strange alternative to a bombardment cannon called a Obliterator Cannon. The weapon fires a beam of condensed energy after a period of charge powerful enough to tear through multiple ships before dissipating. The ship also removes space for typical Drop Pods in favour of powerfully immense teleporter that could project entire companies with incredible accuracy, to a point where it could pick the exact position of every soldier. The drawback is this process would have to be immensely complicated and appears to require exact positioning from the Cruiser itself.
Leso Kehnau (Rubicon Class Stealth Ship) - This ancient ship functions as a forward scout for the rest of the fleet, boasting now unheard of cloaking technology. While not outfitted for direct confrontation, minor ship to ship las weapons are present on the fore and broadsides of the ship. Where this ship's functions shine are in deep infiltration and deploying elite stealth units behind enemy lines. The Leso Kehnau has penetrated almost any blockade come across, somehow foiled near impenetrable planetary defences to bring unseen death right to the doorstep of the enemy.
Malum (Strike Cruiser) - A notoriously vicious Strike Cruiser, the Malum is either helmed by one of the most courageous or suicidal Reapers currently gracing the Chapters ranks. Always at the vanguard of any void battle, this ship operates as the close range blockade smasher of the fleet, using a powerful Plasma Destructor to punch through the enemy lines in a single devastating strike. Sacrificing much of its versatility and space for heavier firepower and armour, the Malum has built a bloody-handed reputation with every closely won duel in the black void.
Lesolohi (Hazaroth Class Frigate) - The Lesolohi is a highly modified medium vessel, with heavy exterior damage and large predatory art gracing the ships fore. Aside from this obvious modification, this ship appears largely unchanged, hinting it is a new addition to the fleet. The Lesolohi currently serves under the 2nd Kra-Helyrx.
Turu-ha-Yrupu (Cruiser, Unknown Class) - In a similar position as the Malum in the Star Reaper's Fleet, the Turu-ha-Yrupu is perfectly designed to inflict maximum physical and psychological damage at close range. The voidship is armed with weaponry varying from typical heavy las cannons and plasma batteries to devastating Phosphex and Cyclonic torpedos. This vessel also commonly carries out ground bombardment or Exterminatus actions.
Botarxonn (Hunter Class Destroyer)- A vessel normally found amongst the Unforgiven, oddly bearing markings of the Lions Sable Chapter long since destroyed.
Antro'z Icarax (Strike Cruiser) - This vessel is of ordinary make, captained by Nui-ta Koltau.
Lhikan'r Vali (Strike Cruiser) - Known by some as Lhikan's Warning in the common tongue, this Strike Cruiser appears to bear the honour of being a "herald" to the arrival of the Star Reapers. A tactic used by the Chapter would have this ship, heavily damaged and transmitting warnings on all comms, arrive ahead of the fleet. The ship would then go entirely dark for maximum psychological impact. The vessel also contains a large amount of boarding craft, but minimal weaponry.
Notable Star Reapers
Hydraxon is a figure of mystery, even amongst his own legion. Towering over even his Terminator clad brothers, it is he who holds the equivalent position of Chapter Master. Hydraxon has been seen on the field of battle on few occasions, usually as a frontline commander. A brilliant strategist and warrior both, the true intrigue behind Hydraxon runs deeper than his unusual wargear and appearance. According to the minimal evidence available an individual answering to the same name and title, while also bearing the same armour and weapon, have been present among the Reapers for over 2000 years. In addition, multiple accounts of this figure surviving incidents that should've resulted in his death have been noted. Hyrdaxon is clad in the ancient Ignika Kahu and is armed with his artificer lightning claws, Maw and Silence.
The Lord of the Harrowed, also referred to as the the Shepard of Exiles, is the commander of the Harrowed and a black figure within his Chapter. Like Hydraxon, this figure has bore the same title, armour and weapons for generations. The Nuixaleso operates as Hydraxons ever present shadow, his dark right arm to the Takamangai's shining left. The ancestral weapons of this figure are two ornate pistols of unknown design, what appear to be miniaturised Phosphex bombs and a set of power-knives. The warrior is clad in what appears to be partially invisible power armour.
In Gothic, the Great Soul Guardian. This mythical figure in the Chapter is an archetype of Light, a balance for the Lord of the Harrowed. While the Harrowed Lord is the cold cruelty of the void, the Takamangai is the harsh, indifferent light of the stars. The exact operations of the Takamangai are unknown, but he holds a position as the blazing left arm of Hydraxon. The Takamangai wields a strange onyx bladed spear, known by the Star Reapers themselves as Ir-vä koavaku (Fang of Doomed Stars) or simply the Fang. He is clad in muted gold and silver artificer armour as well as cloak seemingly woven from the starlit void.
No record currently existing in the Imperium can confirm wether Sarda refers to a lone agent, a leader of the Blacklights, a team of their best or if he even exists. Whatever the truth, the scattered evidence that can be found suggest that Sarda is one of the most skilled marksmen among the Adeptus Astartes. This Astartes is a strange combination of extreme psycho conditioning and raw talent with the the panoply of arms and fieldcraft of an assassin. Rivalling the skills of even a Vindicator, evidence suggests Sarda is often deployed ahead or apart of the bulk of a force. With one well placed bolter round, entire wars can be ended before they've even begun.
Kyros is a distant Reaper, a former Deathwatch member assigned to the Harrowed after progressively becoming more adverse to the doctrines of the Chapter. Splitting from the Chapter entirely and now roaming the galaxy, his relations with the Star Reapers are tenuous at best.
Teridax, Nuixiden-ka:The current Chief librarian of the Star Reapers, Teridax is the guardian of arcane knowledge collected by the Chapter over their long history. Teridax is a solemn and wise individual with a cynical perspective on morality. While rarely seen on the battlefield, when Teridax does make his appearance his psychic might is clear. Using his powers to cloak himself, fire bolts of sable lightning, create strange vortex's of curling nothingness or slice through formations with bent blades from beyond the dark void. Teridax boasts a set of artificer armour covered in strange wards and a curved Force sword.
Pridva holds a position equivalent to that of a High Chaplain or Reclusiarch, a heavy handed individual who safeguards the mysterious warrior culture of the Star Reapers and eliminates those who stray from duty. Pridva's reputation for brutality, zealotry and constant paranoia moulds him into a fearsome figure inside his Chapter. When in battle, Pridva sails forth in the vanguard on Jump pack, armed with his strange, bladed crozius variant made from similar black steel as the Fang. Priva also carries a plasma pistol with strange literature and carvings and an item known as the Reapers Key.
Chiriox is the current Lord Apothecary of the Chapter. Chiriox is rarely seen on the field of battle, primarily residing inside the depths of the Nightspire. While undertaking the healing role similar to most Apothecaries, Chiriox is also the master of interrogations and and the darker sides of surgical arts. While he is skilled in the aspects of medical arts, Chiriox has been condemned for his unsanctioned experiments. Considered too bloodthirsty even to the hardest Reapers, Chiriox continues his craft with a delayed death sentence upon his head.
The only solid proof of this Star Reaper's existence, obtained by the Imperium, is several transmissions from ground forces to orbiting vessels. It is suspected that Makamau resides in the Nightspire, where he oversees the construction, modification and repair of his Chapter's equipment. While Makamau is not the only known individual to hold his position, he is the only one with any concrete information on him.
On occasion, onyx armoured Astartes speaking clipped Gothic and marked with swirling iconography make appearances at Watch Fortress's across the galaxy. These Astartes are commonly silent, talented warriors will reveal they hail from the Star Reapers, but little more. Commonly stating "their presence repays their longstanding debt" on induction, these Reapers serve wholeheartedly. Interestingly, the majority of discoveries of the Star Reapers culture and the workings of their gene seed have been made during their Deathwatch service. Oddly the Reaper's do not appear to be aware of this, or more likely are indifferent towards this gained information.
While most Astartes shrug off their preconceptions and form bonds with their teammates, an aura of cold indifference surrounds any Star Reaper seconded to the Watch. As a result, most Reapers serve in isolation, with favour only shown to certain Astartes who have earned a level of respect.
Chapter Relics and Possessions
Also referred to as the Ir-vä koavaku (Fang of doomed stars), this weapon is a double bladed power spear of black steel. A meticulously crafted and infamous weapon in the hands of its wielder, the Fang is rumoured to be a reforging of an ancient Xenos weapon of similar description. While this is considered nothing but speculation, the blade does have some unusual qualities not shared by any Imperial weapons. The blade itself glows with a dark light and appears to contain strange wisps of nebulae and starlight inside the blade. In addition, in the hands of the Takamangai this blade can release blasts of strange, starlit energy.
Maw and Silence:
The chosen weapons of Hydraxon, Ir-kav bir Shelek are a pair of barbed Lightning Claws similar in design to the Ghosts Razors. While the two weapons are part of a set, both are vastly different from one another. Maw is a combination of pre and post heresy lightning claws, with short blades mounted on the fingertips and long, barbed blades on the dorsal armour of the gauntlet. These blades flicker in and out of the material world and emit a ghostly howl. Silence on the other hand lacks the dorsal mounted blades, instead replacing them with a compact assault cannon.
The Reapers Key
The strange key-like item carried by Pridva, the Bri-Ignika Makoki is an artifact of unknown significance and function. What is known is that it plays a key role in the rites of the Chapter, particularly that involving the practices of the soul.
The Reapers Mantle:
Ignika Kahu is a set of archaic Terminator armour with the design of the Tartaros pattern, covered in swirling markings typical of the Reapers. The armour is also implemented with streaks of Naupahu filament, which coats entire sections of the armour, but designed to intimidate and distract more then for infiltration. Unusually, the set resembles typical artificer armour more than its Terminator equivalent, but is large enough to fit the category. The helmet itself bears a unique and intimidating design similar to that of ancient Heresy type armour.
Mantle of Dark Light:
The Kahu Kra-Yrupu are actually two dynamically opposite sets of artificer armour, worn by Hydraxon's left and right "arms". One is a dulled set of armour designed to blend in with line troops, but also is covered in a chameleonic layer of nano filaments that allow it to blend into its surroundings. The other set is silvered and covered in icons of muted gold, similar to the design of the Ignika Kahu. A strange cloak graces the pauldrons of this armour, swirling with the starlit void. These sets are worn by the Kranuix Koleso and the Takamangai respectively.
The highly modified weapon allegedly belonging to Sarda, Sanok is a Tigrus Exitus Bolter with some unusual customisations. This weapon boasts a telescopic site, which can be altered to suite various environs and detect multiple visual signatures. Multiple varieties of loadable shells including Kraken, Stalker, Banestrike and Kra-Shelekhi can be loaded. A collapsable stock, long barrel and other minute alterations also grace this Bolter. However, stripping all these modifications reveals this weapon has no real unique properties.
This refers to the tiny filaments coating portions, or rarely, the entirety of a Reaper's armour. These implanted additions refract and distort light to allow semi-invisibility. While primarily designed to aid infiltration, various Reapers have used this to great effect in perpetrating psychological tactics. This imprinted tech, in addition to the memetic properties of the iconography used by the Reapers, morphs Astartes into shifting spectres phasing in and out of reality.
Known by the Reapers as Avaku Bol'va, these refer to the strange metals used in the creation of various high quality weapons. While applied to various hand to hand tools, the common link between these is the ghostly, quicksilver glow. The steel carries latent qualities similar to that of Power Weapons, but can still be further enhanced by the the energy fields common to power weapons. This forms a weapon that cuts through bonds at a molecular level, but is exceedingly difficult to create and maintain. As such very few of these blades exist.
Specially made Bolter rounds created by the Techmarines housed in the fleet, dark silence bolts are highly modified rounds designed for immense, silent damage. Each round is filled with a strange device that can only be described as a miniaturised Warp Engine. While not truly being propelled into the warp, the strange technology allows the Bolts to phase out of reality similar to the Star's Steel. These bolts are near silent, highly effective and used by the most elite infiltration units.
While the Kra-shelekhi bolts are designed for silent elimination, Howler rounds are used by the majority of Bolter wielding frontline units. Howler rounds employ miniaturised vox casters and aerodynamic stabilisers that create sounds similar to that of the fearful cries of previous victims while moving towards their targets. In addition, the core of the round contains razor sharp adamantium razors designed to shred flesh and armour alike in an explosion of steel.
The Reapers, being isolationist and largely uncaring for allies, have made some brothers in arms during their long history. Alongside these allies, sworn enemies have also been created. (Feel free to add or propose your own!)
A winding, thrashing force of Chaos, the Jormungandr warband and the Star Reapers have been sworn foes since M32. Since the events taking place in the Harran system, the Reapers have hounded the Coils of the warband across the Imperium. Unfortunately, however many splinters they destroy, another rises from the Warp. The Jormungandr themselves have wronged the Star Reapers in more ways then simple defiance however, during the Daxia campaign these heretical murderers flayed alive and mutilated three score captured Reapers, including a Nui-ta and his bodyguard. Worse, the traitors used their gene seed mixed with Obliterator virus and created unspeakable abominations. While these were swiftly eliminated, bad blood has remained ever since. Hydraxon has vowed that all of the Jormungandr's council of madmen are murdered by his hand.
Both the Iron Hands and the Star Reapers value ruthless efficiency from their Astartes, and while their doctrines do vary, a mutual respect can be felt during their rare cooperations on the field. As a combined force, these two Chapters fit each other like two sides of a coin. The Iron hands march proudly and resiliently into their enemies, while the Reaper's strike from unexpected quarters and pick apart defences. Despite this, the Iron Hands near religious desire to purge their flesh has met with scathing rebuke by the Reapers. This strain has not quite sacrificed their agreeable nature, but only time can tell if this nature will last.
The relationship between these two Chapters is an evolving one. Both being like-minded in stratagems and their methods, the Chapters seemed like a perfect match. Indeed, during the earliest days an unspoken level of respect passed between them. To a later date, an unknown event caused some level of disagreement, resulting in mutual respect leading to rivalry.
The Star Reapers and the Death Templars first crossed paths during the Scouring of Mehna in 589.M40, when the Death Templars were given the duty of defending a critical manufactorum from a brutal Ork onslaught. The Death Templars eventually abandoned their defensive position in favor of a devastating counter-attack. The Chapter were quickly overwhelmed however, by the masses of Orks. The Star Reapers then decided to come to their aid, valiantly launching a decisive counter-attack that saw the Chapter strike down the Ork Warboss directing the assault and scattering the greenskin forces. The Death Templars have never forgotten their debt owed to the Star Reapers, and have sworn to always come to the aid of their brother Chapter whenever they have been called - a debt that has only been called upon twice in over a thousand years.
Though the term 'ally' is somewhat of a misnomer due to these two Chapters' similarly insular natures, both of them share common ground when it comes to their drive to enact slaughter against the foes of the Imperium. Their different approaches to combat operations meshes well with one another. Though they may differ in their approach on how they mete out their particular brand of frontier justice towards the various enemies of the Emperor, and they don't always see eye-to-eye when it comes to tactical objectives, these two Chapter recognise one another as kindred spirits. Both Chapters have rarely fought alongside one another over the millennia, but when they have, great victories were snatched from the jaws of inevitable defeat. But the scent of atrocity tends to hang over these joint victories, which continue to echo down through the records of Imperial history. Even at their finest, these two brutal and bloody-handed Chapters' actions have a pall of horror that casts their deeds deeper into shadow. No one is quite sure when such a warrior bond was formed between the Murdering Sons and the Reapers, but what is known with any certainty, is that the two Chapters will fight alongside one another, on rare occasions, when circumstances prove most dire.
- "Listen, can you hear that? Those howls? Can you hear those cries? Their boundless suffering and pain? That can only mean one thing, my brothers are coming. Nothing can save you now."
- —A dying Blacklight Infiltrator.
- "This is a broadcast to every soul on this doomed planet. To the cowards, run. To the lackeys, hide. To the Iraka who call themselves "Night Lords"; neither option will save you now. You have three hours, then we shall reveal ourselves, and you shall die. Good night. "
- —One of the Harrowed, interrogations of survivors revealed the source was their own equipment.
- "..The ghosts are here, they're right outside my door. They won't leave [sobbing can be heard] Please help us! [sounds of commotion can be heard] By the mercy of the God Emperor leave us! We have done nothing! Please..no don't. Please no more. We surrender. [Bolter fire can be heard]"
- —Vox transmission salvaged from the now dead World Marianus Primus. It was the only remaining evidence of human habitation.
- "Such weapons! Such speed! Such brutality! Surely you will all make fine foes on this day!"
- —Crusader Rlev Vakal of the Crusade Eternal as he barrels through the ranks of the Star Reapers
- "I smelled your weak loyalist blood long in advance, now you will learn why all the stars of the Exile Sector fear the Storm!"
- —Brother Khard of the Storm Draugar
- "Our enemy presumes much of himself, sending wee squires to do the work of full blooded Brothers! Still, were I entreated to be honest, these younglings make for fine sport."
- —Knight-Brother Baldocur of Skaldvere as he stands over the mutilated remains of a Star Reapers Scout Squad
- "That was... Excessive, to say the least."
- —Unknown Obsidian Blades Marine to his squad mate after witnessing a liaison Star Reapers brother in close combat.
- " They do know how to blend in the shadows and strike their foes from them. If they are not also Sons of Corax, they are worthy of being adopted among us."
- —High-Preserver Cole Solas of the Void Ravens, before his entombment in a Dreadnought.
- "Hm? You call yourself a STAR REAPER? Ha! Dont make me laugh, you and your brethren could not muster the strength to blow out a candle!"
- —Valkyura Warpschild in a duel against a Star Reaper company champion.
- The artwork inside the infobox, as well as the gauntlets and Hydraxon are credited to Algrim Whitefang
- The Star Reaper language is heavily based on the Bionicle Matoran dialect
- The Alpha Legion and Night Lords were strong influences on the Reapers
- The Matoran language has no equivalant word for Reaper, ironically Ignika means life.