WS 34 BS 28 S 32 T 25 Ag 31 Int 30 Per 33 WP 35 Fel 34 Inf 35
Movement: 3/6/12/24 Wounds: 9+1d5 Armor: 2/2/2/3 Insanity: 1d5 Corruption: 0
Skills: Acrobatics, Common Lore (Imperium, Tech), Deceive, Dodge, Inquiry, Linguistics (High Gothic), Stealth
Talents: Addiction (Polymorphine), Extended Form, Exotic Weapon Training (Neural Shredder) (Injector), Weapon Training (Chain, Solid Projectile), Jaded, Paranoia, Unremarkable, Light Sleeper, Enemy (Inquisition), Hatred (Inquisition), Die Hard
Gear: Callidus Helmet (includes preysense goggles, micro-bead, rebreather, and respirator), 4 doses of Polymorphine, Magnoculars, Personal Medi-kit, Pict-recorder, Synskin Bodyglove AP:2/2/2/3, Vox-caster Chainsword, Autopistol, Poison Blades, Injector, Neural Shredder, Death Card
- Chainsword One-Handed Melee – Chain Dam: 1d10+2 R, Pen: 2, Balanced, Tearing
- Autopistol Pistol – Solid Projectile Range: 30m Shots: S/-/6 Dam: 1d10+2 I, Pen: 0, Clip: 18, Reload: 1 Full
- Poison Blades Melee/Thrown Rng: 18m Dmg 1d10+6+SB (R) Pen: 1 Wt: 0.5 Kg Razor Sharp, Toxic (4)
- Neural Shredder Class Pistol, Rng 20m, RoF S/–/– Dmg 2d10+5 (E) Pen: 0 Clip: 8 Rld: 1 Full Wt: 3 Kg, Reliable, Shocking, Spray
Aptitudes: Fellowship, Wounds, Agility, Weapon Skill, Fieldcraft, Finesse, Perception, Social
Special: Sure Kill – In addition to the normal uses of Fate points (see page 293), when an Assassin successfully hits with an attack, he may spend a Fate point to inflict additional damage equal to his degrees of success on the attack roll on the first hit the attack inflicts.
Never Tire– An Callidus Assassin character counts his Toughness bonus as four higher for purposes of determining Fatigue.
Breeding Counts – Any time a highborn character would reduce his Influence, he reduces it by 1 less (to a minimum reduction of 1).
Temple Assassin: A Callidus Assassin has supreme physical and martial training, allowing her to re-roll any Acrobatics or Athletics tests. Additionally, she has a number of Reactions each round equal to her Agility bonus (3) that can only be used to make Evasion tests. She can still only attempt to Evade a given attack once. At the GM’s discretion, this talent also allows her to attempt Evasion tests when they might not otherwise be possible, letting her Dodge massive explosions, a descending Warlord Titan’s foot, or an invisible psychic attack.
Background XP cost: 300 XP
XP available: 2700
Recommended Missing Skills: Athletics (S), Awareness (Per), Charm (Fel), Common lore (Any), Intimidate (S), Security (Int), Survival (Per), Trade (Chymist) (Int)
Recommended Missing Talents: Ambidextrous, Assassin Strike, Blademaster, Catfall, Combat Master, Constant Vigilance, Counter Attack, Cover-Up, Deathdealer (Melee), Deny the Witch, Exotic Weapon Training (Phase Sword), Face in a Crowd, Killing Strike, Two-Weapon Master (Melee, Ranged), Two Weapon Wielder (Melee, Ranged), Unarmed Specialist
“Yes, I especially liked that vintage, so I enslaved the village to ensure a steady supply.”
–Leisi IX, Governor of Pallon Secundus
Highborn are the elite of Imperial worlds, the nobles, princes, and lords of cities, systems, and worlds who rule over boundless populations alongside other equally-privileged scions. To be born into such a setting is to have been given the best the planet has to offer, raised apart from the struggling ranks of Mankind, and destined to take on positions of great import and power. These luxuries might be the finest pelts and grox meat of a feudal world, or the most potent of narcotics and offworld delights on a mainstay hive world. To be a highborn is also to enter into a world of deadly politics and ancient feuds, where children grow up with terrible enemies and sleep knowing there are those that would cut their throats for a taste of their hereditary position.
Highborn often live their lives apart from the rest of their world, sometimes never leaving the high castles, spire cities, and sky palaces far above the swarming masses. They are content in the knowledge that they are the instruments of Imperial dominance on their world and the voice of the Emperor to their people, and anything that would disrupt such a state is unthinkable anathema.
Life as a highborn
Highborn exist on nearly all Imperial worlds, from the towering spires of its hive cities to the stone forts and caves of its feral kingdoms. They are the privileged and powerful of their worlds by recognition of Adeptus Terra, those fit for governance not by the will of the people but by the providence of their birthright and holy Imperial Mandate. While their powers and purview might differ from world to world, their function remains the same: to lead their people and control the resources and political might of their planet. Most highborn grow up being groomed for this power, either taught to govern justly by fair and evenhanded peers or, more likely, instilled with a disregard for those below and ingratitude for the influence and position they have been given. Many are so ingrained into their opulent lifestyle that they have little or no notion of how the majority lives. Generations can be spent in supreme—if relative—comfort, be that a heated cavern shielded from perpetual blizzards or an orbiting pleasure satellite that rides auroral clouds. Here they are content to shield themselves in the trappings of wealth and privilege, while focusing on the real threat to their existence: other highborn.
The scale and size of the Imperium is reflected in the nobility of its worlds. Just as it has endured for millennia and covers the majority of the galaxy, so too are there noble families, sector lords, and planetary governors whose lineage stretches back thousands of years, and whose holdings comprise whole systems or wide regions of space. It is also reflected in its diversity, with each world’s ruler as unique as the world itself. Some worlds are ruled through agencies such as the Adeptus Ministorum or Adeptus Mechanicus, where the rulers are more the result of power plays than hereditary bloodlines or the decree of the Adeptus Administratum. Some rulers flicker and fade, having barely made their presence known.
Others form dynasties lasting the entire history of a world. Often a family or lineage can draw great power to itself, slowly but surely acquiring planetary control and resources, seeding its progeny throughout positions of influence and authority until there is no place on a world untouched by its grasp.
Being a highborn means more than being born into power and position; it means the lifelong obligations and struggles both to protect the interests of the family or house, and to try and better them. It is the nature of power that those that do not have it crave it, and those that have it crave more. Noble families thus conduct warfare with each other to garner and defend power, in battles often masked with subtlety, disguise, and innuendo, but no less deadly than open combat. At such levels, mere currency is worthless, and power is traded in favours and debts. In these struggles for power there are few rules, and should a family fall from favour they have little recourse for justice when targeted by blackmail, treachery, or murder, save to respond in kind.
While born to power, highborn characters might also be born with little or even nothing to look forward to beyond a lifetime of idle excess and family infighting. Even among the most powerful families, there are usually dozens if not hundreds of heirs to the true positions of power, and a highborn, while afforded all the luxuries of his station, may find little with which to content himself. This idleness can lead them in wildly different directions, either choosing to try to climb the social ladder of their family, proving themselves in the bloody politics of the Imperial nobility, or rejecting the control their family has placed upon them and seeking their own fortune elsewhere. Those that remain find they are never truly free of their family. The ties that bind them to the home are always present, as is the taint of their family and its reputation, which clings to their name as long as they wear it.
Even those that try and escape might not be able to run far enough to outdistance their noble obligations and their family’s long reach, inevitably dragged back into its petty squabbles and bids for power long after they considered themselves free.
A highborn character not fortunate enough to have a place of real power could spend his days in luxurious indolence, or find adventure on his own in other areas of his world to pass his time. Some might be ceded to one of the Imperial organisations operating on his system or world, thus extending the influence of the family. Here the highborn might rise through the ranks or be as idle as he desires, putting in token effort and continuing a decadent lifestyle secure in the knowledge that the weight of his family can protect him from any chance of dismissal. It is not uncommon for a highborn youth to be given a commission in the Imperial Guard or Imperial Navy. While it falls to such a highborn to decide if he cares to strive in his position, he might easily earn the resentment of those officers who have had to earn their rank, at least until he has proved himself in some way.
Fall of your house
When you were just 10 years old your father and your family was accused of Heresy Extremis by Inquisitor Aurora Orlov. After the purge none of your house survived except you. Your noble house has been judged heretical and your family holdings have been confiscated by the ecclesiarchy. You escaped and joined Temple of Callidus Assassins.
Story choices? On the night when Inquisitor Aurora Orlov destroyed your house you escaped because?
- You had an dream of premonition. Players choice.
- You were warned by your sister.
- You were ushered to safety by elderly steward of the keep.
Callidus Temple of Ordo Assasinorum
Like all of the other temples of the Officio Assassinorum, the Callidus Temple was originally founded on Terra in the late 30th Millennium as the Callidus Clade during the Great Crusade at the direction of the first Grand Master of Assassins, Malcador the Sigillite. Malcador and the six men and women who would serve as the first Directors Primus of the Officio Assassinorum’s founding clades had all sworn an oath at Mount Vengeance to eliminate the enemies of the Emperor of Mankind by any means necessary.
One of these Directors Primus, whose identities were all kept hidden, even from each other, was known as Sire Callidus and she was the founder of what became the Callidus Temple. The headquarters or temple of the Callidus Clade was established somewhere on Terra, where it is still located today.
Later, during the Horus Heresy, the Callidus Clade joined with the other five clades to assemble an unprecedented Execution Force of Officio Assassins intended to slay the renegade Warmaster Horus and bring an early end to the terrible civil war of the Heresy. This effort failed, though the Callidus Temple went on to prove a powerful instrument of Imperial policy in later millennia.
The vast majority of missions undertaken by Callidus Assassins involve infiltrating a Chaos Cult or other heretical organisation in order to kill its leader along with the other key members of the cult. Once the leadership of such a group has been removed, it is easier for the Imperium’s regular armed forces to eliminate the cultists, without having to resort to extreme measures such as an Exterminatus order.
However, on less frequent occasions Callidus Assassins are called upon to undertake more exotic assassinations, requiring the use of both Polymorphine and surgical cybernetic implants to allow them to assume the form of a wider range of humanoids.
Although they are not typically fielded with a larger army on the field of battle, Callidus Assassins can be deployed behind enemy lines in order to infiltrate facilities such as bases or encampments and take out enemy leaders or key personnel. This is usually achieved by the assassin killing an isolated patrol or enemy unit and then assuming the form of one of those slain through the use of Polymorphine (also acquiring the armour and wargear of the deceased to complete the disguise).
Callidus Assassins are the most secretive and least understood of the Officio Assassins, as their usefulness would greatly diminish if their capabilities were more widely known. They are usually tasked with their missions on the order of the High Lords of Terra at the request of the Inquisition, especially the Ordo Hereticus, although as stated above, less frequent missions from the other Ordos are also undertaken.
To achieve the exacting tasks assigned to it, the Callidus Temple specialises in the use and development of the shape-altering drug Polymorphine to enable its Assassins to undergo dramatic physical changes, altering their appearance to assume the features of any humanoid (of whatever gender). This then enables the Assassin to infiltrate organisations or enemy bases and eliminate their assigned target with little opposition. The Callidus Temple is highly skilled in such deceptions, and often its work is not detected until the Assassin has already made a clean getaway.
The Callidus Assassins usually impersonate someone in a close position to, or holding influence with, the target. For example, a trusted advisor to a Chaos Lord, or the nursemaid to a child prophecised to cause much pain to the Imperium.
All of the Assassins of the Callidus Temple are trained in the use of Polymorphine. With this specialised drug alone a Callidus Assassin may masquerade as any human being she may choose, from a beautiful young woman to a crippled old man. However, in addition, the Medicus Adepts of the Imperium have developed a range of surgical implants to allow Callidus Assassins to mimic members of alien races.
Over the centuries, the Directors Primus of the Callidus Temple have learnt that the female body and psyche is better able to implement these changes, and by and large female Callidus novitiates make better chameleons than men. As such, almost all Callidus Assassins are actually women, regardless of who they are trying to impersonate.
Callidus Assassins undergo many Terran years of rigorous training to use Polymorphine and become one of the living weapons of the Callidus Temple. As part of its Assassins’ training, the Callidus Temple practises innumerable ancient and secret martial arts. These arts train the Assassin in many deadly forms of armed and unarmed combat, against which even a battle-trained foe would be hard-pressed to find a suitable defence.
A Callidus Assassin must move among the enemy as one of them, so the choice of weaponry is always limited and in some cases the Assassin may be forced to fight with their bare hands. Even so, a Callidus Assassin is just as deadly unarmed as when carrying the lethal but easily concealed weaponry preferred by their Temple.
On the battlefield, Callidus Assassins are dropped behind enemy lines, where they use their cunning and skill at deception and stealth to infiltrate the enemy army. Usually this is done by eliminating certain individuals and taking their place.
By disguising themselves with the recently deceased’s armour and wargear and using Polymorphine to change the shape of their body and face, the Callidus Assassin can assume the identity of almost anyone in the enemy force. Using this technique, the Callidus Assassin can get close to enemy commanders or powerful psykers, influencing their strategy and finally killing them when the opportunity arises.
The weapons of Callidus Assassins are predominantly close combat or melee weapons, as their deception and infiltration skills and the use of Polymorphine enables them to get very close to their targets before they need to strike. This is assisted by weapons that are small and easily concealed and Digital Weapons are often preferred by these Assassins. Every Callidus Assassin is also a master of multiple forms of unarmed combat and many can kill with a single strike. The following are the most common weapons utilised by the Callidus Temple:
- Poison Blades – In sealed pockets across their synskin bodygloves, many Callidus Operatives keep an array of envenomed needles, each several inches long and wickedly sharp. The toxins on these miniature blades are enough to drop a full-grown Ogryn in seconds, and a Callidus is an expert at slamming them point-first through eye-slits, armour joints and other weak spots to ensure their victim’s swift demise.
- Neural Shredder – A Neural Shredder is a vicious and shockingly effective weapon against living targets. Though short ranged, the weapon projects a cone of psionic disruption that tears apart a victims’ neural pathways. Armour is no protection against his hideous attack, even the mightiest foes may drop to their knees, spasming violently as liquidish brain-matter froths from their eyes, ears and mouths.
- Synskin Bodyglove – Most Callidus Assassins enter combat wearing special stealth suits that enhance their abilities to avoid detection by most forms of passive sensors. These synskin bodygloves have several sealed pockets across it, where an array of concealed weapons and other items are stored.
- Death Card – The death card is a flourish peculiar to some Callidus assassins, a surprisingly effective tool of terror. They will often place these psychoplas wafers on the corpses of those they have slain, slipped between the stiff dead fingers or gritted teeth of their victims. When touched by living flesh, the cards flicker to life. They project a hololith of the victim’s face in their moment of death, complete with a looped recording of their agonised screams.
Notable Callidus Assassins
- Siress Callidus – The founder and first Director Primus of her clade, Siress Callidus was the namesake and founder of the Callidus Temple. She, along with the other founders of the various Assassin clades that would eventually evolve into the current Assassin Temples, was present on Mount Vengeance. She and her fellows swore a pact in the shadow of the Great Crusade, an oath that breathed life into the creation of the Officio Assassinorum. The newly created clades hunted down the enemies of the Emperor through stealth and subterfuge, establishing the fact that there was no safe place in the galaxy to hide from the Emperor’s justice.
- Koyne – Koyne was a Callidus Assassin during the Great Crusade. Koyne was a Shade of Clade Callidus ranked as an Epsilon-dan, the senior-most rank of the order. Having been a shape-changer for most of his/her life, Koyne often stayed in the form necessary for the completion of the mission and eventually had forgotten his/her original gender. Koyne was dispatched with the first ever Imperial Execution Force composed of Imperial Assassins from every clade, who were attempting to assassinate the Traitor Primarch Horus upon the world of Dagonet. Ultimately, their assassination attempt failed and all the Assassins were slain by the Traitors.
- M’Shen – M’Shen was the infamous Callidus Assassin who successfully assassinated Konrad Curze, the Night Haunter, the murderous and unstable Primarch of the Night Lords Traitor Legion on the “Carrion World” of Tsagualsa. Despite Night Haunter’s formidable powers of psychic foresight which forewarned him of the assassination attempt, he took no precautions to defend himself.
- Meh’Lindi – Meh’Lindi was a Callidus Assassin who was active in the late 38th and early 39th Millennium. Though the Callidus Temple has record of an Assassin with that name, they will not or cannot corroborate any more specific details. She was recruited from an unnamed Feral World and was particularly susceptible to Polymorphine, the shape-shifting drug used by the temple’s Assassins. She was also known for her intelligence and fierceness. She was the subject of a unique experiment in the Temple’s history, as she was implanted with genetically engineered organs and glands that allowed her to rapidly assume the identity and appearance of a Tyranid Genestealer hybrid which allowed her to infiltrate Genestealer cults and destroy them from within. This experiment, however, made it unable for her to assume any other transformation that that of the genestealer form. She later found herself serving in the retinue of the Inquisitor Jaq Draco. Meh’Lindi was known to make use of Jokaero-built Digital Weapons. Much later, Meh’Lindi and Jaq Draco’s retinue, would make their way to the desert world of Darvash III, to track down the former Callidus Director Secundus, Tarik Ziz, and force him to reverse her surgery so that once again, Meh’Lindi would be able to assume any form with the use of polymorphine. Meh’lindi was ultimately killed in the Eldar Webway by a female Phoenix Lord. Meh’lindi was the Inquisitor Jaq Draco‘s lover, and he became obsessed with her “resurrection” which he thought possible thanks to the peculiar temporal properties of the Webway, specifically the existence of the Crossroads of No Time.
- Mother Gullet – Legends tell of a daring and hideous crime perpetrated by a Callidus Assasin against a Planetary Governor who though himself strong enough to defy Imperial rule. The governor doted on his infant son, and had him guarded night and day to prevent his kidnapping to be used against him as a hostage. According to the tale, a Callidus Assassin disguised herself as the child’s nanny, and so gained access to the princeling. Employing the shape-changing powers of polymorphine, the resourceful Assassin swallowed the child like a python, and carried it away past the guards in her belly. The Planetary Governor soon capitulated to Imperial authority.
- Militzia Scarvelli – Militzia Scarvelli was a petite but fearsome Callidus Assissin, who in in the guise of a Gretchin slave-creature. Just as Oilguzla launches his Deff Dread horde at the Space Marines protecting Hive Imperator, Scarvelli recovers her phase sword from its hiding place in a nearby stack of scrap metal and attacks. Though it takes her almost a full minute to do so, she hacks the Big Mek into fist-sized chunks before overloading his force-field generator and bringing the stomping advance of the Deff Dread mobs to a grinding halt.
- Syndalla – Syndalla is a fanatically devoted servant of the Emperor and the Inquisition. The sole survivor of Kalistradi’s retinue, Syndalla is a skilled Throne Agent and Assassin of the Callidus Temple. When the Genestealer uprising on the world of Avalos began, the rebels assassinated most of the PDF officers, leaving the guardsmen in chaos. Syndalla was present on this world during this time in the company of Inquisitor Kalistradi. Before the Inquisitor left to deal with the Genestealer nest, she told Syndalla to use her polymorphine to assume the guise of a PDF officer and hold the regiment together until she could return. Through Syndalla’s efforts, she was able to keep the soldiers in ordered and maintain discipline while fighting against the rioters, while still waiting for word from her lord. When no word came, she kept up her guise hoping the Inquisitor’s call for help was received. Syndalla would later aid a Deathwatch Kill-team that landed on Avalos in response to the Inquisitor’s request for aid.
- Tziz Jarek – Tziz Jarek was an infamous rogue Callidus Assassin who was active during the Wars of Vindication, which took place shortly after the death of the Renegade High Lord Goge Vandire during the Age of Apostasy’s Reign of Blood in the early 36th Millennium. Vandire had managed to corrupt many within the Officio Assassinorum, just as he had bribed and blackmailed his way through the other Imperial Adepta. Foremost amongst Vandire’s agents was Tziz Jarek. Using polymorphine, Jarek had assassinated the true Grand Master of the Officio Assassinorum and assumed his identity. However, unbeknownst to Jarek, the Grand Master had expected such a plot and had a decoy Assassin take his place in his chambers. As such, Jarek had not killed the true Grand Master, who secretly mustered those still loyal to him and the Emperor to fight against this usurper. A heinous battle raged within the Imperial Palace itself amongst the various factions of Assassins as they brought their terrible skills to the war. Ancient arsenals of the Officio Assassinorum were opened and terrifying weapons, long banned by the Senatorum Imperialis, were brought to bear by the Assassins on both sides against one another. In the end, the true Grand Master assassinated Jarek and disappeared into a self-imposed exile. After the conclusion of the Wars of Vindication, the hidden order of the Inquisition known as the Ordo Sicarius was set up to police the activities of the Officio Assassinoruum. The various Temples were split up and scattered to separate locations throughout the galaxy to ensure that if one should fall to xenos influence, daemonancy or heresy, others would remain untainted. Other rules were also put into place to ensure that no single individual could abuse wielding the power of the Officio Assassinorum for their own ambitions.
- U’var – U’var was a Callidus Assassin who played an instrumental role in ending the Siege of Tullok in 872.M40. For fifty years the renegade Planetary Governor Urlos Grador had defied the lmperium from behind the fractal encergy shield of his grand palace, the shifting force walls seemingly impervious to attack. Finally, the Callidus Assassin U’var managed to infiltrate Tullok’s sub-strata generatorium and interrupt power to the shields for a few short seconds. In this briefest moment, a single squad of Archangels Terminator’ of the Blood Angels Chapter‘s elite 1st Company teleported into Grador’s palace and brought the siege to an end in an hour of brutal Imperial vengeance.
- Asaid Virenus – An infamous rogue Callidus Assassin, Asaid Virenus grew up in the Underhive of Perseus Hive on Olympas. Found by an Inquisitor at the age of twelve, she was given over to the Officio Assassinorum for testing to see if she was a suitable candidate for the Callidus Temple. She passed the physical tests easily, and her intelligence was clearly superior to most of the Imperium’s inhabitants. There were doubts over her loyalty, but the masters of the Temple believed that through years of arduous training this could be overcome. Asaid continued to be rebellious and selfish, and at the age of seventeen it was likely that she would be quietly killed, considered unsuitable for further training. Though she had perfected many of the skills required of the Callidus, and had even begun to successfully use the shape-altering drug Polymorphine, her dubious motives had become too much of a worry for the leader of the Callidus Temple. Her tale would have ended there had she not fallen under the care of the Thorian Inquisitor Dahwrin who intended to use Asaid in a secret experiment involving the development of a new drug known as Hyperpolymorphine that was intended to artificially create a vessel for the rebirth of the Emperor-Incarnate. Surviving the experimental sessions, her own ruthless determination allowed her to master the side effects of the Hyperpolymorphine. Using the powers granted to her by the effects of the experimental drug, Asaid managed to escape. She now survives as a freelance Assassin, working for Imperial Commanders with political ambitions and has even worked alongside xenos and subversive Chaos Cults if the pay is right. Her dependence on certain stabilising elixirs has forced Asaid to raid Adeptus Mechanicus facilities in order to acquire sufficient drugs to preserve her life. These raids have provided a trail to her whereabouts for her main adversary, the Inquisitor Lord Antigonus Balorodin, to track her whereabouts. Balorodin’s concern is not only for the acts of murder and mayhem that Asaid commits, but also the tacit threat her existence poses to the Imperium at large. While Asaid lives, anti-Imperial forces could capture her and learn many of the secrets of the Callidus Temple and the Inquisition. Should knowledge of how to manufacture and use Polymorphine be learned by the Emperor’s enemies, it could cause untold damage, while the location of any Assassin Temple’s outposts is a closely guarded secret.
Story Choices? You were able to resist hypno-doctrination of Callidus Temple because
- Of protecting amulet that has been in possession of your family from beginning.
- You are naturally resistant to hypno-doctrination. Player choice
- Hypno-doctrination machinery malfunctioned during your initiation to the temple.
The role of the assassin
Assassins are often not just masters at killing, but also at closing on their prey and striking without warning. Like the Imperium’s most deadly predators, an Assassin stalks his quarry before he attacks, choosing the precise moment to inflict the maximum amount of damage and the best chance to make the kill. These techniques are the result of his skills in stealth and infiltration, slipping past sentries or guards and finding ways into seemingly impregnable fortresses. Like murderous ghosts, they appear out of nowhere to silently take down their targets before vanishing once again. A truly masterful Assassin can kill without detection, leaving only terror,
confusion, and a corpse in his wake. In this capacity, an Assassin makes an excellent scout or skirmisher, gathering information and spreading discord among his enemies, while his fellow Acolytes conduct their mission.
Part of an Assassin’s abilities extend to the arts of deception and disguise. When he cannot move about unseen or comes up against a barrier which he cannot breach, he can sometimes hide in
plain sight. While not a staple of the role, the finest are often adept chameleons, changing their appearance to match surroundings and mimicking their enemies to hide amongst them. Here they can become talented liars, and learn to match the speech and mannerisms of their foes to slide into their ranks unnoticed. Such methods are excellent ways of getting close to a target, passing freely through security checkpoints and other barriers before attacking an unsuspecting quarry and using the confusion to fade into the background undetected.
Assassins are also skilled the application of precision violence, taking out specific foes or striking targets that might have otherwise considered themselves safe. Either close up with blades and
poisons, or from afar with sniper rifles and remote explosives, the Assassin can hit a foe swiftly and suddenly. Whereas a less subtle Acolyte can be forced to expend huge amounts of ammunition or saturate an area with explosives to eliminate a target, the Assassin needs but one shot or one thrust of the blade to do his work. This talent for precise murder can be useful when collateral damage must be kept to a minimum or only a key figure needs removal to crush an uprising or cult.
In addition to skills in moving about unseen, bypassing security, and reaching difficult targets, the Assassin also makes for a solid support combatant. Alongside the more heavily armed and
armoured Acolytes, he can skulk around the flanks of his foes to take out stragglers and wounded enemies. Using his skills in death, an Assassin can do terrible damage in the right circumstances, and open the way for his fellow Acolytes to complete their goals. It will be close and bloody with blades and poisons, appearing suddenly to tear open throats and exposed joints before rejoining the shadows.
Assassins typically view most problems as solvable through precise and exact application of deadly force, and as such mould their bodies and minds to best execute it. Most delight in such
applications and eagerly seek them out, or view them as acts of devotion as part of their veneration to the Emperor. The worlds of the Imperium are home to numerous death cults, murder guilds, lifetaker orders, and other places to train in these arts of murder.
In service to the throne: One amongst the billions
The Imperium is built upon the toil of untold trillions of men and women, and the blood and bones of countless generations form its foundations. Your life was spent as one in the Emperor’s service, destined to sacrifice yourself to the greater glories of His Empire. Some choose to serve; others find their service forced upon them, chosen to be one more cog within a machine of bewildering proportions.
To serve the Emperor is to serve the ideal of conquest. Mankind is destined to rule the stars, so the preachers and missionaries say, and to reclaim worlds from the darkness between the stars is a bloody task indeed. In some way, shape or form, all who serve the Imperium directly contribute to its ongoing war of conquest and reclamation, a war that began a hundred centuries before and which has never truly ceased, though its form and pace have changed much with the ages.
One Amongst Billions
Your early life was remarkable, but a strike of justice made you a single face amongst the teeming masses of humanity. Of no importance to the hierarchy of the Imperium, cast out beyond the fringes of society, you seemed doomed to a life of constant run and anonymity. Through ceaseless toil to improve your lot in life, you learned quickly the politics of the Imperium, of preserving your own interests with a wary eye cast to the efforts of your peers. Through these methods, you fought your way from amongst the masses to make something of yourself.
Effects: Gain the Paranoia and Unremarkable Talents, and any Common Lore as a trained Skill. Additionally, gain +3 Perception, but suffer –3 Strength.
Your house and family have been declared Hereticus Extremis by Inquisitor Grand-master Aurora Orlov. You know she sits in the shadows, waiting for you to lower your guard so that in a flash of blood and pain your life too will be snuffed out of existence. So far, you have managed to stay ahead of it. There have been too many sleepless nights as you lie awake wondering if the noise you hear outside is your assailant…or something else. Even though your cunning has kept you alive, you know, however, that the time will come when you two will meet face-to-face and that time she or you won’t escape.
Effect: Gain +3 Perception. In addition, gain either Light Sleeper Talents. Additionally, gain the Enemy (Inquisition) Talent, where the enemy is hunting the character.
Honour, family, and loyalty are not mere empty words to you, they are tools for survival and identity. Without your guile, your vengeance, and your false identities, you would be lost in the cold darkness of galaxy and become a prey to hateful enemies without number; with those tools, you are protected, you have a safety and security when others seek your life.
Blood Will Have Blood: You gain the Die Hard talent, and the Inquiry Skill (or, if you already possess it, increase it by one level).
Stay No Hand: You will not stray from your vendetta, until your enemy lays dead in your feet. You may take a Willpower Test to avert this if you wish, modified by the provocation and the consequences (set by the GM) of succumbing to your rage.
Vengeance burns within your heart, flaming afresh in your veins each time you wake from dreams of knives and murder. You seek revenge against Inquisitor Aurora Orlov who has grievously wronged you and your house. That desire gnaws at you, haunts your sleep, and shadows your every action. All must toil to live, but with each step you take, you ask yourself: “Is this a step closer to my revenge?” The need rides you, and it will do so until the day you stand above the bloody corpse of your enemy.
Effect: You gain the Hatred (Inquisition) Talent.
Character origin choice?
- As an acolyte you framed up your death and assassinated elder assasin of the temple and replaced her. From your position of power you were able to assign yourself to operation against Inquisitor Aurora Orlov.
- As an acolyte you framed up you own death and assassinated and replaced one of your fellow class-mate, when you learned that she was summoned to work against inquisitor Aurora Orlov. Player choice
- As an acolyte you framed up your death and infiltrated the Ordo Hereticus of Calixis sector to hunt Inquisitor Aurora Orlov on your own without resources of the assassin temple.