Background


PATH TO CHAOS

Induction

Ever since he could remember, Maximus Adual was an outcast, a wanderer. He lived a harsh life in the deserts of Galinx, divorced of his parents for his deviancy, and his abilities only grew whist in isolation. At first, his future sight was sporadic, coming and going seemingly at will, but he eventually mastered this skill, and could call forth visions of the future with little real effort.

When a patrol from the Fists of Flame entered the system, one of their Librarians quickly detected the sheer power Adual had, and at first they approached the world with caution. For four days, the Chapter’s Librarians debated about the fate of Adual, with a great many wanting to destroy Adual out of hand rather then risk the purity of the Chapter with such a powerful psyker in their midst.

On the last day, Chief Librarian Boslin declared his decision and he would be the one to approach Adual.

However, Adual had detected the psychic emanations from the Astartes in orbit and had known the outcome since the outset.

A lone silver Thunderhawk settled on the desert floor less then a kilometre from Adual, and knew what was expected of him. Dropping to one knee, Adual greeted who would become his mentor, Chief Librarian Boslin of the Fists of Flame.

Seeing the young boy was a greater asset then a threat, Boslin took the boy from his life on Galinx.

Adual trained under Boslin for many years and eventually attaining the rank of Epistolary ahead of his nearest rival both in terms of power and training, Mars Aran. With his new rank, Adual was granted permission to enter the ancient depths of the Chapter’s Librarium on the Scourge of the Damned. There he read and begin to understand the foul arts, and as he read more and more of the dark tomes sealed away in the Librarium, his mind became clouded with their dark secrets.

The Calling of Tzeentch

It was only when he had devoured every last shred of knowledge contained in the Librarium that the forces of Chaos begun to whisper to him, granting him promises of even greater knowledge, of even greater power and all he had to do was seal his pact with the Changer of Ways.

As part of his pact with Tzeentch, Adual was to aid a traitor, who would later become known as Gemiel, to escape Imperial retribution, and was furnished with only a date and a location, Tarsiss III.

With the eventual goal in mind, Adual begun to plot and to set in motion the events which were to take place many years later. Contacting the Dark Eldar, he secured their assistance in exchange for his help in the future and should Adual come to power, he would ensure them with a constant supply of slaves and sacrifices.

With the aid of the Dark Eldar from the Dark Eldar faction, the Cult of the Emerald Talon, Adual was successful in sowing the seeds of a cult on Tarsiss III.

The Dark Eldar also made contact with both Lord Arnell and Lord Damius, although they are an unknown quantity, and Adual only hoped they could aid him when the time came.

As time passed, Adual’s plot deepened, as he knew it would. The Cult quickly enraptured Enric Lingson, Gemiel’s father, giving him a prominent position amongst the human followers.

As the word of the Cult spread, so did their power. As they continued to grow stronger, the threat to Gemiel also grew as the Imperial agents begun to discover more and more about the Cult.

With the date rapidly approaching, Adual contacted his messenger in the Cult, and instated the final act of the Cult. As one, the Cult rose up in open rebellion, aided by their Dark Eldar cohorts.

As the enemy within the Imperium rebelled, the Fists of Flame were called to aid in destruction the rebellion. In a masterstroke, Adual had secured for himself a reason to return to Tarsiss III, and there he could seek out Gemiel and seal his pact.

Tarsiss III

When Adual arrived, the world of Tarsiss III was in deep upheaval. All but the most die-hard cultists had been killed and only fierce pockets of resistance remained. Knowing the Imperial forces could deal with these last pockets, Adual sought out Gemiel.

He quickly discovered that Mars Aran was aiding the Imperial Inquisitor in his search and even now were tracking Gemiel down.

Adual was ideally placed to aid her, as he had his own transport, that which he had used to get to Tarsiss III. He eventually found her walking the back streets, devoid of any real purpose, and unsure of where to turn.

However, Adual’s presence was known, for Adual had arrived on Tarsiss III with Mars Aran.

With time now running short, Adual narrowly avoided being captured himself.

Both he and Gemiel had escaped the surface.

Blood and Plague

Gemiel and Adual were not yet safe, as they had to get out of the Tarsiss system alive.

It was here that Adual’s masterstroke came to the fore in his insistence of the Cult of the Emerald Talon contacting the Nurgle Lord Damius and Khorne Lord Arnell.

As the Rapid Strike Vessel carrying Gemiel and Adual broke orbit, the Imperial forces fired upon them. Alone, outgunned and outnumbered, Adual’s plot thickened once again.

From out of the Warp, the vessels of Lord Arnell and Lord Damius attacked the Imperial forces, allowing Adual and Gemiel precious time to escape the system despite taking severe damage to their vessel.

COMING OF AGE

Zaldas

When the battle in the Tarsiss system was over, Adual’s vessel was found by the Nurgle and Khorne fleet as they made their return journey to the Eye of Terror.

Confronted first by Lord Arnell, Adual revealed his visions to Arnell, and gave him the knowledge he would need to attain daemonhood for himself, but at this point, Adual’s own ascension was hidden from him.

When Damius boarded Adual’s vessel, he was confronted by a minion of Tzeentch, something for which Damius had a deep loathing for as it was the hands of Tzeentchian sorcerers that he had nearly been killed by several centuries before. Despite his own misgivings about Adual’s patron, the Nurgle Lord could tell Adual was powerful even now, and could eventually threaten Damius.

It was then that the strands of fate would be cast. Damius attacked Adual openly, and it was only the intervention of Arnell that stayed Damius’ blade.

To be saved from death by a disciple of Khorne spoke volumes to Damius and he held his doubts to himself, for now.

With little to remain in the Imperium for now, Adual was escorted back to Eye of Terror and back to Iunsan.

Finding the Arnell’s daemon world exceptionally harsh and bound from using his powers by the presence of the ‘Standing Stones,’ devices which sap a psykers powers and ebb away his soul, and would eventually leave Adual a dried husk.

Securing a vessel for himself at Arnell’s discretion, Adual set a course out into the Eye. Chance would smile on Adual. For a period of months, the vessel drifted until it came upon a blighted Eldar crone world. Guarded by ancient guardians, Adual was able to prove his worth, and disarm the old traps almost single-handedly.

As the world became his, Adual turned the world spirits trapped there to his own ends, acting as guardians for Adual and using magicks developed by Adual, he was able to make the spirits of the long dead Eldar work for him, crafted them to suits of power armour. Thus Adual now had his army, and his own world.

The Librarium

It was perhaps the hidden Librarium Adual had found beneath the surface of the world which would become Adual’s most treasured asset. Secluded behind potent seals and powerful magic barriers, Adual eventually broke into the Eldar repository of knowledge.

The knowledge the Eldar had collected there was simply astounding, and Adual spent many years learning it’s secrets, with each day that past, Adual became ever more powerful, and eventually, the very secrets of daemon binding became his, and it was perhaps Adual’s greatest success. He was able to bind the daemonic with both weaponry and inanimate objects, creating works of stupendous power.

When Arnell begun construction of his flagship, the True Domination, Adual offered his services, for a price. Although Arnell had those who had the knowledge to bind daemons, the knowledge they had was rudimentary at best and clouded at worst. Arnell let Adual perform the ceremony of binding, in exchange for his services later.

After nine days of constant chanting, the ritual was complete and life was breathed into the metal frame of the True Domination. Adual had succeeded.

The Great War of Walfen

At the onset of 974.M38, the Four Winds descended on the Imperial world of Walfen as a whole, with each of the four Lords present and with a vested interest in Walfen.

Upon hearing of the attack, both the Fists of Flame and the Dark Angels Chapter of Astartes came to the aid of the beleaguered Imperial Guardsmen fighting all across the globe for their own mere survival. The attack was short lived for the Chaos forces turned on their new prey with almost reckless abandon, forcing the Fists of Flame back to their Thunderhawks long enough for Adual to complete his goal.

The only thing stopping Adual from leaving before the Imperial counter-attack was his pact with the Damius. By the time the Fists of Flame rallied, the Tzeentchian Lord was caught in the open, and the loyalist attack was fierce.

Adual nearly lost his life that day.

If it wasn’t for Damius’ forces intervention, the Changing Wind would have been extinguished during the conflict, and since that day, Adual has owed Damius his life.

When the Imperium finally arrived in force to Walfen, Adual, Gemiel and Arnell were still on the surface, awaiting the inevitable planetary assault.

It was Adual’s fore sight that proved crucial, as he had given the defending Chaos forces forewarning of the coming attack, and his predictions were largely correct.

Thusly, the shock of the attack was lost and the Imperium was quickly slowed to a gradual halt despite the Imperium’s finest from several Chapters out numbering the defenders almost two to one.

That was until Adual triggered his master plan. Before the Imperium’s arrival, the Tzentchian had secured and ritually prepared several focus sites located at key locations across the globe, and all that it would take to set the course of events off was a large enough sacrifice of human life.

The Battle of Culjit on the southern expanse was all he needed, and when the number of dead skyrocketed, Adual completed the ceremony and with it, Walfen’s fate was sealed.

The sky darkened until it was pitch black, the weather turned bitterly cold, and shapes begun to resolve at the edges of vision, becoming more and more corporeal with each passing second. With a thunder crack, the daemons of the Warp broke through the last barrier stopping them entering the material realm, and Walfen was turned into a world of chaos at last. The landscape ebbed and flowed at the whims of dark gods, and the fields of Culjit was transformed into a sprawling maze for miles.

The fighting quickly de-evolved into bitter short ranged skirmishes down the street-wide corridors and junctions of the mysterious, ever-shifting maze.

From orbit, the Imperial commanders watched in horror as the forces of Chaos systematically went about the destruction of ground forces as the Champions of Chaos quickly found they could control the ebb and flow of the maze, and made use of it to their maximum advantage.

Before the battle was over, three thousand loyalist Astartes were laid low and over twenty-two thousand Guardsmen were declared killed in action or worse, missing in action.

PATH TO ASCENSION

Cha’Mont’Yr

The favour Adual had given Arnell would be repaid in full during the war for the Tau world of Cha’Mont’Yr. But before Adual could launch the attack, he needed further assurances. Contacting Damius on the daemon world of Gip’Sum and Gemiel on Iysudann, Adual negotiated for their forces, eventually securing their aid in exchange for some of the knowledge Adual had learned.

When the Four Winds entered the Cha’Mont’Yr system, they found a system with a significant fleet presence, with ships from both the nearby Tau Sept world and, surprisingly, the Imperium.

Battle was joined in the coldness of space, and despite vicious boarding actions and torrents of ordnance being exchanged, the forces of Chaos managed to land troops on the surface and force the Imperial and Tau fleets to disengage, at least for a short time. The Cha’Mont’Yr War had begun.

Leaving Arnell to his own devices as his forces tore at the defenders, clearing whole cities in short hours, Adual made his preparations. With the aid of a small force from all factions of the Four Winds, he secured a number of sites at various locations on the planet’s surface.

With everything in place, Adual began the week long ritual.

The ritual would never be finished. During the most climatic battle of the Cha’Mont’Yr War, Mars Aran, Chief Librarian of the Fists of Flame led the Imperial counter-attack, fighting his way through the Four Winds vessels and he teleported down to the surface at the head of the Hammer of Tarsiss. Aided by his terminator-armour equipped squad, the small squad fought their way towards Adual.

Seeing his plans nearly come undone by the presence of his former Brother Librarian, Adual called upon his allies within the Warp and summoned a horde of daemonic warriors to halt the Hammer’s progress.

The gambit worked, for a time. The daemons were quickly despatched by the Hammer of Tarsiss, many of them falling to Aran’s force axe in quick order.

Seeing the initial assault of the daemons wane, Adual activated his personal teleport homer and within seconds, Arnell’s most loyal Chosen Terminators appeared beside the Tzeentchian Lord, led by Champion Caltox himself.

Khorne Terminator fought against their loyalist counter-parts, and although the battle lasted less then a minute, it was all Adual needed whilst he uttered the last words of the incantation.

Cha’Mont’Yr shuddered as the warp begun to engulf it. The daemonic force renewed their  Knowing the only way to stop the transformation once it had begun was to kill Adual; Mars Aran struggled to his feet despite receiving several near mortal wounds. The last thing Adual saw was Aran’s axe protruding from his chest.

Lucidan

For several years, Adual’s spirit wandered the Warp as Tzeentch pondered Adual’s worth. The failure at Cha’Mont’Yr could have been Adual’s last, but it wasn’t.

Adual’s soul eventually returned to the realm of men, coming to rest on Zaldas deep within his Librarium. Maximus Adual was reborn, but he would not have the same body as he had before Cha’Mont’Yr. He could not, as his former body had been completely destroyed at Cha’Mont’Yr. Instead, Adual now had the body of his most favoured Champion, Lucidan, and even then, he was not fully in control of his body. As a fitting punishment, Tzeentch had allowed Lucidan’s consciousness to remain, occasionally taking over the body to which both souls were attached.