Shadows in the Warp
Killed in Action
When he was a child his brothers came to his world looking for recruits to fill the holes in the ranks of their warband. His brothers slew the breeders that birthed him and all the other breeders in the town and carried off all the children. Back on their voidship the boys were implanted with the geneseeds of fallen brothers. Only he proved worthy of the great gift. The others died, the screams of their failure ringing out through the ship and into the uncaring void beyond.
The brothers named him Caligula, after a legendary favorite son of an ancient legion. His new brothers were a varied lot. Survivors of fallen warbands from half a dozen of the Traitor Legions alongside former loyalist space marines that fled their legions to avoid punishment/execution. All brought together and given a new home by their champion Marius. His new brothers taught him all the skills of their honored profession. He prospered best with ranged weaponry and became the warband’s sniper.
Hearing rumors that a strange xenos relic was being studied at a facility on a backwater world, Marius decided that the warband would raid the facility and seize the relic and any other tech that might be there. On overwatch from a sniper’s perch Caligula watched his brothers break down the doors and rush into the facility. A few minutes later, without warning, the entire facility was destroyed in a massive explosion. Stunned, Caligula could do nothing other than watch the ruins of the facility as they continued to burn. Observing a number of vehicles approaching, he was surprised to see that they were military vehicles, not emergency vehicles, and that the troops were Imperial Guardsmen. The Guardsmen set up a perimeter around the smouldering ruins and soon after another vehicle arrived. Two civilians emerged from it. They deployed various pieces of equipment and began scanning the ruins. Detecting something they directed the Guardsmen to a spot in the ruins. The Guardsmen dug around for a while and uncovered something, which they returned to the chief civilian. He cleaned it off with a rag and then hoisted it into the air with a shout. All the Guardsmen replied with a cheer. The object of the cheer was the helmet of one of Caligula’s fallen brothers. Suddenly, everything clicked and Caligula realized the whole thing had been a trap to lure the warband in and destroy them. He fired and the head of the chief Inquisitor exploded. His second shot and the other Inquisitor’s head splattered. He switched to the Guardsmen and continued to fire, until all the survivors reached cover. He then escaped from the area.
Lacking the security codes and lacking the knowledge to fly the lander back to the warband’s voidship even if he had the codes, he was stuck on the planet. He survived for weeks, living off the land and avoiding the patrols that continued to hunt him for his killing of the Inquisitors.
Sounds of combat drew his interest. Other space marines were battling against a unit of Imperial Guardsmen and seemed to be losing. He unlimbered his rifle and began sniping the Imperial Guard’s officers. His intervention turned the tide and the champion of the warband offered him passage off the world as a reward for his help in the battle. This new warband were all members of the World Eaters. He accompanied them on a few raids but soon became so frustrated with their methods that he was compelled to part company. Kill, Kill, Kill, that was the Khorne devotees approach to every problem. Then, after they had killed everybody, realize they should have kept someone alive to interrogate, then blame each other and fight amongst themselves until they collapsed, exhausted.
Seeking a different experience, Caligula accepted an offer to travel to a hidden station and join a Black Legion team forming there…