Ever since Purity Lathimon charted safe passage through the Maw and the stars beyond opened to exploration, there has been a Winterscale in the Expanse. This storied line of powerful Rogue Traders has waged wars, conquered planets, and written its name across the Koronus Expanses’ very stars. The friends and resources of the Winterscale Dynasty are legion, but so are its foes—for if there is one thing a Winterscale loves more than profi t, it’s a worthy enemy.
The Winterscale legacy began with Sebastian Winterscale, the cunning and able youngest son of a minor noble house in the Ixaniad Sector, neighbour to the Calixis Sector. None are sure why young Sebastian was granted a Warrant of Trade, but likely supposition indicates his family saw an ambitious and extremely capable youngest child as a threat to the inheritances and possibly the lives) of his elders. Whether or not this was true, their assessment of his abilities turned out to be correct.
Sebastian arrived in the Koronus Expanse with no resources save a single cruiser, just as exploration of its
unknown reaches was beginning. He quickly proved his worth, soundly defeating several more-powerful and betterconnected opponents. Rather than crushing their dynasties, he incorporated them into his own rapidly expanding empire.
Sebastian explored the clusters of stars spinward of the Maw and Furibundus, and it was not long before his efforts bore fruit. The region proved to contain many worlds and systems worth vast fortunes—in raw resources, xenos artefacts, and other valuable finds. Winterscale dominated and controlled his every find with an iron fist, and by his death, the region was known to all as Winterscale’s Realm.
Centuries later, Calligos Winterscale is the latest of his dynasty to inherit the now famous Warrant of Trade. In the years since Sebastian died, the power of the Winterscales has only expanded, and Calligos Winterscale has proven unwilling to rest on his family’s laurels. In the last half-century, he has proven himself as capable as his ancestor Sebastian, and now the name Calligos Winterscale is spoken with fear and awe throughout the Expanse.
However, little is known about the upbringing of this famous individual. Before Calligos, the Winterscale Warrant was held by Arturos Winterscale, but when he died no heirs stepped forward to claim the mantle of Rogue Trader. For many years, the Winterscale Warrant was held by a succession of regents and bannermen. Calligos emerged from complete anonymity, and claimed his prize as the rightful heir of the Winterscale Dynasty.
It was unknown if Calligos was the offspring of Arturos, the child of some parallel lineage, or simply
a talented usurper. What is known is that within a single week, the Winterscale regents had either bowed to
his will or vanished.
With his authority firmly entrenched, Calligos Winterscale set about building on his ancestor’s empire.
DEEDS AND MYTHS
Calligos Winterscale is known and feared throughout the Expanse. Stories of his words, deeds, and
fiery temper are told in taverns from Footfall to Naduesh.
However, it is difficult to separate the facts from the legend. For example, although nearly everyone has heard of the man, few claim to accurately have his measure. It is well known that the man is a giant, tall and broad with terrifying physical strength, just as it is common knowledge that he is a man ruled by his passions. Winterscale goes from good-natured joviality to towering fury at a single word, and will tear into a man (often literally) at the slightest provocation. However, neither Winterscale’s success in securing his lineage nor the undeniably effective management of the considerable Winterscale Dynasty match with a man unable to control himself. It’s likely there are hidden depths to the man, but few know him well enough to confi rm it. Or perhaps he simply knows his passions well enough to direct his inevitable rage in a useful manner.
Likewise, it is well known that Calligos has a unique rapport with hardened crew and scum. While others may command such individuals, Calligos has the singular gift of treating these killers as friends or equals, while still demanding complete and instant obedience. It’s even said that Calligos frequents the fighting pits and gambling halls of low-born scum, where he drinks and wagers like a voidman on leave. However, whether the rumours that Calligos grew up a common pit-fighter in the lowest decks of Footfall are true, is unknown.
One fact that is known is that above all else, Winterscale respects strength of will. He has no interest in those who concede or beg mercy; they are simply tools to be used, exhausted, and disposed of. Of course, while he is likely to respect those who stand defiantly against him, his respect will not stay his hand from crushing them should he wish to. Those who wish to deal with Winterscale must walk a very thin line.
Even if one is to separate out those stories that must be lies—surely it is impossible for a man of even Winterscale’s strength to subdue a power-armoured adversary with only his axe and bare arms—his list of known deeds are impressive. Since taking control of the Winterscale Dynasty, Calligos has split his time between his established interests in Winterscale’s Realm and exploring amongst the stars of the Cinerus Maeficum and Accursed Demense. He rammed the Kroozer of the dread Freebooter Kaptin Snargrash Da Burna and personally led the boarding parties across to the crippled vessel.
When he hewed Snagrash’s head from his hunched shoulders on the Kaptin’s own bridge, the Orks turned tail and fled. He walked the surface of Somnium even as his men grew mad and fell upon each other, and the spirits there shirked from his fearsome wrath. He hunted beasts on Burnscour, swarmed the Eldar corsair vessel Silence of Eternity with ships until the crippled cruiser retreated wholly from the Expanse, and even journeyed to the shattered systems that mark the edge of the Hecaton Rift. Winterscale’s efforts have made him a legend amongst his peers, feared and respected in equal measure, and a man any new Rogue Trader could aspire to become—or defeat.