- "Knowledge is power, and power corrupts. In the case of the knowledge I protect, I mean that both figuratively and literally."
- —The Archivist
An ancient Lord Inquisitor of the Ordo Malleus, the man only known as the Archivist is not a daemonhunter, but rather is a collector of knowledge of the daemonic. He presides over the Arce Secretorum, a secret Inquisitorial facility used to store extremely dangerous Chaos artifacts, daemonic apocrypha, and other such devises and knowledge related to the Warp and it's denizens. The fifth Warden of this vault of the forbidden, the Archivist is a reclusive and altogether mysterious Inqusitor who has been within the ranks of the Ordo Malleus for quite some time, yet is not very well known due to the fact that he rarely leaves the Secretorum.
Even within the ranks of the Inquisition, the Archivist is somewhat of an enigma, mostly due to the fact that very little of his early life is unknown. No one knows where he was born, how he became an Inquisitor in the first place, or even what his real name is. Mention of the Archivist is even missing from many Inquisitorial records, making him unknown to most save the more senior members of his Ordo, most of whom are aware of his existence and little else. Why exactly there is such a lack of information on the Archivist is still up to speculation, although the general consensus is that all information on the Archivist was eradicated by the Inquisition prior to his stationing within the Arce Secretorum, although this is only a rumor.
The earliest mentions of the Archivist exist within an account to the event known as the Purging of Pax Mora, a prosperous Shrine World beset by a daemonic scourge. According to the official records of the Inqusition, Pax Mora was plagued by the onset of a sudden shift within the Warp that led to the barrier between the Materium and Imaterium upon the Shrine World becoming paper-thin. As a result, the mutant population tripped overnight, Chaos Cults began to form, and Daemonic entities began appearing in the streets of the once peaceful planet. It seemed that an Daemonic Incursion would be inevitable, if not for the arrival of a strange figure.
According to the records and the accounts of various Pax Morans, this figure was an Inquisitor clad in a rune-scribed stormcoat and eerie respirator mask, and claimed that he could free the Shrine World of it's plight in a single night. To their shock and awe made good on his promise by identifying and locating the source of the warp-disturbances, a pre-Imperial daemonic artifact known as the Heart of Bael'Kora, located in the catacombs beneath the ruins of a once-prominent cathedral. What exactly the Heart of Bael'Kora was and how it functioned was deleted from the compiled records, but they all go on to describe the mysterious Inquisitor storming the daemon-infested cathedral with the assistance of a battalion of Inquisitorial Storm Troopers and a cadre of Ecclessiarchy Banishers in tow. Lo and behold, as soon as the Inquisitor and his allies emerged from the ruins, the warp shifted once more, the Daemons dissipating back into the Empyrean as their connection to this realm was severed. The Inquisitor then departed the next day, leaving Pax Mora behind to be purged of it's remaining taint.
Those who have met the Archivist have described him as a quiet, yet eerie individual. This is mostly due to the fact that no matter where he goes the Archivist always wears his ornate respirator mask, and is accompanied by the soft wheezing noise of his breathing. Often times he will stand completely still, observing a particular object or person for hours, staring from behind red-tinted lenses that only seem to make his presence all the more unsettling. When the Archivist does talk, and this is a rare event, he usually doesn't say more than a few sentences at a time. Most of the time when he speaks in his surprisingly raspy voice, his words are either somewhat sardonic or simply downright cryptic.
The Archivist, true to his name, seems to have a strange obsession with acquisition of knowledge, particularly of the forbidden variety. Why exactly is unknown, although there are several theories, ranging from a desire to protect the innocent from potential corruption to a dark fascination with the arcane and mystical. Whatever the reason, the Archivist has been known to go out of his way to "acquire" powerful artifacts and exotic arcana, and once he has his mind set to that goal, very little can stop him from acquiring said object in the name of the Emperor's Inquisition.
The Archivist is a lean yet surprisingly muscular individual of average height that always stands slightly hunched over, usually with both hands folded behind his back. He is never seen not wearing his stylized respirator mask, which hides his face and gives him a strange, slightly disturbing appearance. Typically he wears a tattered grey stormcoat decorated with strange symbols, the purpose of which is to provide defense against potential warp-taint. What little of his flesh that is exposed is dead white, and his fingers end is long, blackened nails.
Abilities and Traits
There are few others with such a working knowledge of sorcery, daemonology, and other forms of warp-craft, as the Archivist has demonstrated an almost uncanny understanding of these heretical disciplines on many occasions. Oftentimes he has defeated and banished the daemonic simply through this knowledge, engaging in little to no combat whatsoever. However, in combat the Archivist is far from helpless, possessing superb close-combat skills and an arsenal of exotic weaponry that has been the end of many an opponent.
The Archivist typically carries with him:
Azariah's Talon - A strange, hook-bladed weapon of ornate design, Azariah's Talon is a warp-forged weapon, and one of the "lesser" Chaos artifacts that the Archivist keeps for his use. The Talon itself is amazingly sharp, able to cut through ceramite and break through energy shielding with ease, but what truly makes this weapon dangerous is the way it is wielded. In a exotic fighting style of hooking jab and scything blows that overwhelm the enemy in close quarters.Needler Pistol - An exotic ranged weapon capable of killing within seconds, the Archivist favors this sidearm due to it's quick, efficient means of of disposing of the enemy. Carrying it in a shoulder holster, many meet their end when the Archivist whips out his pistol, although due to its rare crystal-toxin ammunition, it suffers from a lack ammo from time to time.
The Maelonomicon - A book bound in human skin covered in blasphemous symbols, it's contents locked away through rune-scribed chains and a lock of lead, the Maelonomicon is a daemon-possessed book so filled with spite for it's brethren that every syllable read from it's pages causes beings of the warp excruciating pain at their very utterance. The Activist very rarely uses this book, and only as a last resort.
Conversion Field - Taking the form of an Inquisitorial seal that the Archivist wears around his neck like a pendant, this trinket is both his badge of office and his primary means of defense. Crafted by Jokaero digi-weaponsmiths, the gravitic shield it emits is far stronger than is standard, thus making fot a better defense against attacks.
The Warden's Keys - Every Warden of the Arce Secretorum is given a ring of simple-looking keys upon their ascension to that office, keys that unlock the many vault doors protecting some of the most dangerous tools of Chaos. But, each key is a masterwork of digi-technology, for not only are they gene-coded to unlock their designated doors only to the Archivist's touch, but anyone else that touches them receives a a microscopic injection of deadly neurotoxin as their reward.
Luther ValanceAn old but zealous Banisher of the Adeptus Ministorum, Luther Valance has served under the Archivist for nearly a century, and to this day shows no signs of relenting in his duty. To be a Banisher is to seek out knowledge best left buried, and thus Luther makes the perfect companion to the Archivist, loyal, brave, and utterly ruthless in combat. Like most members of the Ecclesiarchy, Luther is a pious soul, frequently praying to the God-Emperor of Mankind to give his strength in his endeavors.
While ancient in human years, Luther is so brawny and muscular for a human that some have mistaken him for a small Space Marine. Going into battle unarmored save for his undying faith, the Banisher wields a Hand Flamer is one hand and a massive Chainsword in the other, and uses both with deadly efficiency honed by years of experience.
Castor and Pollux
A pair of twin brothers that accompany the Archivist while on missions, both of which also share the traits of having startlingly violet eyes, and being Delta-grade psykers. Both serve as his Acolytes, as well as perhaps some of his most effective tools against the forces of Chaos. Castor specializes in Divination, using his psychic power to hone in on the tide of the Empyrean to predict potential Daemonic incursions. Pollux meanwhile is skilled in the art of Theosophamy, and thus uses his power to close rifts between the Materium and Immaterium and banish daemons back to the Warp. Working in conjunction, the twins have intercepted and prevented dozens of potential incursions. As a precaution however, both also have explosives implanted in the backs of their skulls, to be detonated in case of daemonic possession and/or corruption.
Alisha KrellThe Archivist's personal psychic shield, Alisha Krell is a young Untouchable that has only recently joined the Inquisitor's retinue. While non entirely unskilled at combat, Krell usually serves as the Archivist's personal barrier against sorcery. In addition, Krell has had parts taken from an Animus Speculum implanted into her skull, and thus can focus her anti-psyker aura into blasts of negative energy that can send a Daemon spiraling back into the warp (although it is extremely tiring to for her to do so).
Of late, Alisha has become somewhat of a pet project for the Archivist, as he experiments on just how her anti-psychic abilities effect warp-tainted objects and items. He hopes to one day find away to use that ability to nullify the properties of daemonic relics, rendering them harmless.
Feel free to add your own!
The mysterious and insidious crusader behind many daemonic catastrophes, Azunar is a firm believer in the Primordial Truth of Chaos. Ever since his eye looked upon the Arce Secretorum, he has desired the Artifacts within it as his own. After all, they are artifacts of great Sacred worth to the Chaos Gods, so who should possess them if not their Prophet?
Feel free to add your own!
- "Once it was meant to simply protect that which could not simply be destroyed, but it has become so much more..."
- —The Archivist, when asked about the Arce Secretorum
- "I care little for glory, honor, or praise. I am a scholar, and I shall do as the scholar does."
- —The Archivist
- "y'know that over exposure to stuff from the realm of those fanatical dipshits can make you go a bit, well, retarted. Take the Archivist for example..."
- "My Lord Archivist, we come bearing a gift most foul for your dark gallery. I pray you keep it safe, and keep it hidden, from those who would to abuse its power."
- —3rd Captain Zephyer Kize of the Invokers chapter.
- "Seriously creepy, but he and m'Lord go way back and he's a useful ally."
- —Roi Dakaur[src]
- "My old friend walks a fine line between knowledge and heresy. So do I. Emperor grant we never veer from that narrow path."
- —Malleus Skotus[src]
- "Hello, Archivist. You may not know who I am, but you will soon. Many of the Ordo Malleus know my name. Many tremble in fear from it. Know this: Every dark secret, every hidden relic, every weapon of the Warp you possess, rightfully belongs to me. You will return my property, or I will destroy you. You call yourself a Scholar, one who truly knows the power you try to imprison. You think you know what Chaos is. You have no idea."
- —Azunar, in the form of an apparition in one of the Archivist's dreams
- "Despite his his worryingly close association with Chaos tainted artifacts and alarmingly deep knowledge of the Ruinous powers subject Archivist has managed to remain incorrupt - to date. Note: subject Archivist revealed he was quite aware of my identity and mission upon our first meeting and gave me his full cooperation. He is very cognizant of his danger and made it clear that he both expects and wishes to be put down at once should he fall. He joins me in recommending continued close monitoring."
- —Astral Agent 36875's report and recommendation[src]
- "NO. Not even going to ask."