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This article, The Cult of Sarnath, was written by Kadjah Thoris. Please do not edit this article without their explicit permission.
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The Cultus Sarnathum

Organization Description

Heterodox Cult of the Adeptus Mechanicus

Purpose

To collect Knowledge

Means

Experimentation and Back Engineering xeno tech

Leader

Archmagos Thaliart Schaeffer

Location

Podromos Reach

Affiliation

Adeptus Mechanicus; Imperium of Man

[Source]


"We are not Hereteks! We are true servants of the Omnissiah. Truer than those purblind fools on Weyland!"
—Archmagos Thaliart Schaeffer

Originally a Mechanicus Explorator Mission sent out from Weyland in 912.M39 to investigate pre-Imperial ruins reported on the Dead World of Sarnath. The planet proved to have been inhabited both by Humans and xenos of a physically repellent but technologically advanced culture. Nearly two millenia of exploration, discovery and back engineering has lured the members of the mission much farther from Mechanicus orthodoxy then they realize. A fact they have successfully hidden from their superiors on Weyland.

Sarnath

One of the numerous Dead Worlds of the Podromos Reach and the headquarters of the Cult though their explorations have led them to many other worlds in the inter-arm gulf, not all of which have been dead.

History

Sarnath was settled by mankind during the Dark Ages of Technology. They found the planet already occupied by the Ib, an abhorrent amphibious alien race of Daemon worshippers. Millenia of internecine struggle led, apparently, to the destruction of the hideous Ib but the Human inhabitants of the planet disappeared themselves shortly thereafter - how remains a mystery.

Current Status

Sarnath, the stronghold

The Stronghold

Millenia of desertification has dried up the rivers, lakes and shallow seas that once dotted the planet. There is no surface water on modern Sarnath and no life above the level of lichen and insectoids. There is however a considerable amount of dangerous un-life ranging from animate corpses and ancient iron men to lingering warp denizens. The Cult inhabits a massive stronghold near what was once the principle Human city. Originally improvised from the wreckage of the first explorator ship to land - rather too hard - on the planet the Cult center has grown over two millenia into a hi-tech castle capable of holding out against a Chaos Warband - for a while at least.

Cult of Sarnath

The initial explorator mission has expanded into a community that includes children as a necessity to maintain the cult. Replacement personnel from Weyland are rare and not all accept the Cult, in fact there is a very nice shrine to the memory of those who refuse. Most members were born into the cult. The young are not of course concieved and born in the usual fashion but designed by the Mechani Biologi and developed in gestation capsules. They remain in the care of the creche mistress until they reach the age of rationality - six or seven - after which they are assigned to an adult Tech-priest as an apprentice. This is often a very close and mutally affectionate relationship. Mentors, apprentices and former apprentices form lineages and groupings that substitute for families even to sharing a surname. Actual genetic relationships would be difficult to establish given the amount of fiddling the Biologi do with the DNA and is regarded as irrelevant and slightly creepy anyway.

Cult Beliefs

The members of the Cultus Sarnathum regard themselves as completely orthodox - but are fully aware that the main body of the Adeptus Mechanicus would not agree. The point of schism is the 9th of the Sixteen Laws; The alien mechanism is a perversion of the True Path. The Cultus Sarnathum embraces the heterodox principle that the mechanism of the alien must instead be redeemed and restored to the service of Mankind. They firmly believe that they can accomplish this through carefully designed rituals.

Cult Hierarchy

Archmagos Thaliart Schaeffer

Thaliart Schaeffer was sent out from Daedalus to join the Sarnath mission about three centuries ago and has been Archmagos of mission for not quite fifty years. He is notably less radical than his immediate predecessor, Archmagos Slinnir, drawing the line firmly at the analysis or use of warp powered tech. Not all the Cultists agree with this change of policy and Schaeffer has faced more than few challenges from the body of his followers but his selection was the result of the majority's discomfort with his predecessor's policies. 

Magos Logis Zeno Fulvius

Magos Fulvius is the chief Logis of the Cult and as such a member of the synod advising the Archmagos. As an expert in logic and analysis he plays a prophetic role among his his brethren, calculating which avenues of research will give the best results and analyzing the few records found so as to reconstruct the histories and cultures of the lost civilizations the Cult investigates. He and his fellow logi also spend an appreciable amount of time analyzing and forcasting the likely actions of the Cult's supposed superiors back on Weyland and how to head off possible interference.

Magos Fabricus Accorda Dahood

As chief Artisan of the mission Magos Dahood is responsible both for maintaining its equipment and designing and building new devices as required. As a senior member of the Cultus she sits on the governing synod and dedicates much of her time and energy to the study and back engineering of xeno machines. As the Cult's chief link to the orthodox Mechanicus Accorda must walk a perilous tightrope, producing just enough results to keep the Mechanicus authorities on Weyland willing to support the mission without eliciting their suspicions.

Magos Biologis Marlinius Helix

In addition to analyzing biological specimens both living and dead Magos Helix is responsible for creating the next generation of Cultists. Some of his predecessors had an unfortunate tendency to get creative with the genetic designs usually with disastrous results. Marlinius however is a firm adherent of the Primus Humanum philosophy and will countenance no experimention with xeno DNA - much less splicing it into Human chromosomes! He keeps a very careful eye - several more than the ones he was born with, on the xenobiologists in his department.

Archmagos Veneratus Alarbus Thorne

40k, Aliris, Cult of Sarnath6

Chief of the Rune-priests and designer of the rituals. Rune-priests are very important cogs in the machine of the Cultus Sarnathum.  It is their job to propitiate and reassure the tormented machine spirits imprisoned in xeno devices with prayers and rituals and to win their favor for the Cult.


Relationships

Allies:

Bagge Industries

supplies both weapons and logistical support to the Cult, and an ever eager customer for their adapted xeno-tech.

Phoenix Brethren

this renegade Chapter provides all to frequently needed combat support in return for technical support and military technology.

Quotes

By

About

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