WH40K what if: Leman Russ returns

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WH40K what if: Leman Russ returns

Post by Sidewinder » 2008-06-07 05:22pm

This thread made me dust this off my ever-expanding library of ideas for unwritten fan fiction, so...

The 'Space Wolf' novel mentioned that Leman Russ went to the Eye of Terror to get the seeds of the Tree of Life, which can heal the Emperor. The premise is Russ and the 13th Company Wulfen return from the Eye of Terror, bearing a couple of seeds from the Tree of Life. To test the seeds, Russ gives one to Bjorn the Fell-Handed, who's magically restored to full health, free of a Dreadnought's life support systems.

Now Russ wants to go to Holy Terra and give a seed to the Emperor. Will the other powers in the Imperium (those who are NOT willing servants of Chaos) allow him to do so, or will they try to kill Russ and maintain the status quo? If Russ is allowed to give the Emperor a seed, and the Emperor is magically restored to full health, no longer dependent upon the Golden Throne's life support systems, what will happen to the Imperium and the rest of the galaxy? (Note: some fanfic writers believe a revived Emperor will make peace with the Eldar and the Tau, who'll become Imperium allies against Chaos. Considering the extreme xenophobia and human supremist ideas the Emperor apparently espoused, I find that highly unlikely.)
Please do not make Americans fight giant monsters.

Those gun nuts do not understand the meaning of "overkill," and will simply use weapon after weapon of mass destruction (WMD) until the monster is dead, or until they run out of weapons.

They have more WMD than there are monsters for us to fight. (More insanity here.)

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Post by Crom » 2008-06-07 05:36pm

The entire Space Wolf Chapter and their derivative Chapters would gather behind Russ. Since Primarchs tend to be extremely charismatic they could probably pick up a few Chapters as they make their way towards Terra.

The Adeptus Custodes would probably side with Russ if he could convince them that he wasn't an agent of Chaos. If he could contact them he could probably get over one of the biggest hurdles between him and the Golden Throne.

I'm not sure how the High Lords are going to divide, or how the Inquisition would regard Russ (especially considering how factionalized the Inquisition is) or if the AdMech would take any of this.
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Post by NecronLord » 2008-06-07 05:40pm

It's quite likely that the Emperor will just lead him to the Throne as soon as he comes near to Terra, bypassing the security all together, as in Draco. Assuming they're uncorrupted and work, the Emperor will probably remain in the throne anyway; but he'll likely have strength to talk and direct his minions...
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Post by Chris OFarrell » 2008-06-07 06:01pm

Yeah its a big question mark.

Russ IS a Primarch, one of the Emperors SONS, but look at him coming out of the EOT and most of the Imperium will probably see Horus.

The Space Wolves and their successor chapters have a LOT of manpower and firepower, but its nowhere near enough to force their way into Terra if the Imperial Navy says 'no', the defenses around Earth both in fleets, orbital and ground based are just insane by the 41st millennium IIRC.

The BIG question mark IMO and the organization that most of the rest of the Imperium will take their lead from, will be the Inquisition. If they loudly and publicly back Russ as the real deal, then the rest of the Imperium, the rest of the Astartes chapters will fall into line behind the Primarch, the High Lords and so on will allow this to happen. Of course, I pity the higher ups in the Inquisition...

The Xanthis will turn white as sheets and look for some big rock to hide under at the thought of the Emperor coming back to have a chat with them, as will the Horusian's, though they might even push to confer the status of Emperor on Russ or something as he comes strolling out of the EOT. The followers of Recongregationism may well splinter, with some saying bringing the Emperor back could reinvigorate the Imperium something fierce, while others would think it would doom it. The Thorians will probably *demand* Russ be allowed to try and try to shoot anyone who disagrees as will followed of Monodominance, who probably expect the Emperor will start up a new, even grander crusade to exterminate all the Xenos. And finally Amalathianism followers will probably try to push a middle line, which might get accepted by all parties...

To that end, I'd think the Inquisition would probably propose a test they, the AdptMech and so on can witness before they will let him near the Emperor. Assuming he brought enough seeds, they'll probably turn a few over to a taskforce from the Ordos Xenos and specialists from the AdptMech to study it in detail, if he can be convinced to wait say a year or something (he's waited THIS long after all).

And if it LOOKS safe, they might get him to use them on say...Roboute Guilliman. IIRC he is supposedly 'dead' in his stasis field on Macragge, but rumor has it that his wounds have slowly been healing despite how impossible that would be and I'm sure Russ wouldn't have a problem with trying to save his brother first.

And if THAT works and Roboute dusts himself back off, well, I think the Imperium would be inclined to let them try. Not to mention swing all the chapters who are descended from the Ultramarines genesead (a double fuckload IIRC) right behind Rioboute and Russ.

The Adeptus Custodes are a big question mark. Granted they are not going to be able to even slow down the combined chapters of the Space Marines if they force the issue, but the last thing anyone wants is running gunfights in the Emperors waiting room. I think they would probably invite the two Primarchs in for a chat with the Emperor himself, I have no doubt the Emperor would have something to say about it.

The only other real big question mark would be the the Ecclesiarchy, but I think they would try not to rock the boat too much, probably spending most of the time praying for guidance or something.
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Post by Sidewinder » 2008-06-07 06:38pm

Crom wrote:The entire Space Wolf Chapter and their derivative Chapters would gather behind Russ.
According to the Wikipedia articles on the Space Wolves and the Space Marines, Russ allowed ONE chapter to be created from his legion (other than the Space Wolves, of course), the Wolf Brothers, who "were eradicated due to rampant mutation of the unstable Space Wolf geneseed."

But I agree that the Space Wolves and some of the other chapters will side with Russ. The Dark Angels are an enigma, though. Will they try to stop Russ to prevent the Emperor from finding out about the Fallen and ordering the destruction of theirs and their successor chapters, or will they support Russ so the Emperor will pardon theirs and their successor chapters (minus the Fallen, of course)?
The Adeptus Custodes would probably side with Russ if he could convince them that he wasn't an agent of Chaos. If he could contact them he could probably get over one of the biggest hurdles between him and the Golden Throne.
The Horus Heresy: Collected Visions mentions that a large number of Custodes accompanied the Space Marines in the Scouring of Prospero (I've yet to read the novels themselves). If one or more of the Custodes who accompanied Russ still lives, he'll probably recognize the Primarch and allow him to approach the Golden Throne.
NecronLord wrote:It's quite likely that the Emperor will just lead him to the Throne as soon as he comes near to Terra, bypassing the security all together, as in Draco. Assuming they're uncorrupted and work, the Emperor will probably remain in the throne anyway; but he'll likely have strength to talk and direct his minions...
I've yet to read 'Draco'. What are you describing? That the Emperor stop time for all except himself and Russ, so the Primarch can approach him without interference? That the Emperor teleport Russ directly to the front of the Golden Throne?

Anyways, assume that the seed of the Tree of Life CAN and WILL restore the Emperor to full health IF he gets it, and that the Emperor will NOT transform into a servant of Chaos afterwards. If the Emperor awakes... I do NOT want to be the guy who has to explain to him what happened to the empire while he was enthroned.
Please do not make Americans fight giant monsters.

Those gun nuts do not understand the meaning of "overkill," and will simply use weapon after weapon of mass destruction (WMD) until the monster is dead, or until they run out of weapons.

They have more WMD than there are monsters for us to fight. (More insanity here.)

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Post by Imperial Overlord » 2008-06-07 09:26pm

Sidewinder wrote: I've yet to read 'Draco'. What are you describing? That the Emperor stop time for all except himself and Russ, so the Primarch can approach him without interference?
The Emperor stopped time in the local area for everyone but himself and Draco. There's also him sending the Custodes to got tell the proto-Sororitas that he wants to speak with them pronto at the end of the Reign of Blood. Russ, assuming he isn't corrupted, won't have any problem seeing the Emperor because the Emperor will clear the way.
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Post by Tasoth » 2008-06-07 10:05pm

Since it's been made clear that the seeds don't corrupt those who receive them (or at least not the emperor), what are the chances of all the chapters that have a primarch on ice attempting to take them away from Russ? The potential for a giant Space Marine fight is there.
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Post by Sidewinder » 2008-06-07 10:46pm

Tasoth wrote:Since it's been made clear that the seeds don't corrupt those who receive them (or at least not the emperor), what are the chances of all the chapters that have a primarch on ice attempting to take them away from Russ? The potential for a giant Space Marine fight is there.
I'm assuming the majority of the loyalist chapters will agree that the Emperor's restoration takes priority over that of their Primarchs. The Dark Angels are a big unknown, however, considering their desire to prevent any and all knowledge of the Fallen from reaching ears outside of theirs and their successor chapters, which MIGHT drive them to get the seed away from Russ so the Emperor can't punish them for actions of the Fallen. (Comments from Dark Angels players or fans?)

As for those that serve Chaos, the response is pretty damn obvious: one band of Chaos Space Marines take the seed for whatever reason a Chaos Space Marine or daemon prince would want a magic cure-and-heal-all, and then other bands attack that band to get the seed, repeat ad nauseam.
Please do not make Americans fight giant monsters.

Those gun nuts do not understand the meaning of "overkill," and will simply use weapon after weapon of mass destruction (WMD) until the monster is dead, or until they run out of weapons.

They have more WMD than there are monsters for us to fight. (More insanity here.)

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Post by 2000AD » 2008-06-08 05:26am

Tasoth wrote:Since it's been made clear that the seeds don't corrupt those who receive them (or at least not the emperor), what are the chances of all the chapters that have a primarch on ice attempting to take them away from Russ? The potential for a giant Space Marine fight is there.
What other 'Primach's on Ice'?

Lion'el Johnson, Corax, Vulkan and Jaghatai Khan all dissapeared.
Sanguinius is plain dead.
Ferrus Mannus got decapitated by Fulgrim.
All that's left of Rogal Dorn is his hand.

Only Gulliman is in that near dead but not quite dead status.
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Post by Cykeisme » 2008-06-08 07:06am

Lion'el Johnson is alive but unconscious at the core of the Dark Angels' asteroid fortress monastery.
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Post by andrewgpaul » 2008-06-08 07:08am

Roboute Guilliman is in stasis, but apparently slowly (impossibly) healing his wounds. And as you say, Corax, Vulcan and Khan vanished. Just like Russ. :)

Jonson is 'sleeping'. Your guess is as good as mine as to whether he's actually alive, and if so, what will cause him to waken.
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Post by NecronLord » 2008-06-08 09:39am

The Watchers and possibly the Emepror are the only people who know where Jonson is, so that's not a problem.

The Dark Angels wouldn't try and stop the Emperor being ressurected; these guys have been beating themselves up over a garrison going over to chaos (note, most other chapters have renegade marines too, according to the new CSM book, including the Wolves) for ten thousand years. They love the Emperor that much and identify their honour with his service that much. Every single one of them would torture himself to death in the most agnoising ways rather than get in the way of the Emperor's rebirth.
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Post by Cykeisme » 2008-06-08 11:15am

andrewgpaul wrote:Jonson is 'sleeping'. Your guess is as good as mine as to whether he's actually alive, and if so, what will cause him to waken.
Well, whatever else will awaken him, a Seed of Life ought to do it as well..


Btw..
Sidewinder wrote:(Note: some fanfic writers believe a revived Emperor will make peace with the Eldar and the Tau, who'll become Imperium allies against Chaos. Considering the extreme xenophobia and human supremist ideas the Emperor apparently espoused, I find that highly unlikely.)
Isn't this case-specific, and just that everyone remembers the parts where the Emperor purged the truly evil xenos that preyed on men during the Age of Strife?
Wasn't the Emperor buddies with Eldrad Ulthran?
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Post by NecronLord » 2008-06-08 11:27am

He allowed Ulthran to talk to him. They were also prepared to just plain shoot humans who dared live in cooperation with friendly xenos.
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Post by Crom » 2008-06-08 01:42pm

Since the Draco instance pretty much proves that the GEoM can still exert his will directly over individuals, I guess it's pretty much a given that Leman Russ can get to the GEoM if he needs to. I think it would probably be best if he traveled incognito, to avoid sparking a civil war with the Inquisition.

I wonder, though, at this point does the GEoM's power really rely on his physical well-being? He's pretty much a Chaos God at this point.

Anyway, should the GEoM be restored, I'm with NecronLord in that he may have to remain on the Golden Throne anyway. Isn't he keeping Terra from becoming a Daemon World? I'm not sure anything would really change considering that isn't he also locked in a titanic mental struggle between himself and the Four Ruinous Powers?

It would just mean that he might need to eat less Psykers, which would be a relief for 10k people per day in the IoM.
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Post by Sidewinder » 2008-06-08 02:45pm

Crom wrote:Anyway, should the GEoM be restored, I'm with NecronLord in that he may have to remain on the Golden Throne anyway. Isn't he keeping Terra from becoming a Daemon World? I'm not sure anything would really change considering that isn't he also locked in a titanic mental struggle between himself and the Four Ruinous Powers?
IIRC, the Emperor intended to open a warp gate to the Webway so man can travel across the galaxy without exposing themselves to the Immaterium's corruptive effects; the Golden Throne was built to control the warp gate. During the Horus Heresy, daemons attempted to attack Holy Terra through this gate (thanks to Magnus' stupid decision to use sorcery to warn the Emperor of Horus' treachery, which brought down all the wards the Emperor put up to prevent daemons from doing so); this was the reason the Emperor ordered the gate sealed.
It would just mean that he might need to eat less Psykers, which would be a relief for 10k people per day in the IoM.
According to the Wikipedia article on the Astronomican, the psykers are sacrificed to power it, NOT sustain the Emperor.

Anyways, most people agree that the loyalist chapters will support Russ' attempt to revive the Emperor. Any guesses on what the other races will do in response? Chaos throwing everything it has against Holy Terra in an attempt to kill the Emperor before he gets the seed of the Tree of Life? The Eldar throwing everything they have against the Imperium, or throwing themselves at the Emperor's feet in the hopes he'll order that they be spared? Will the C'tan and the Tyrannids even give a damn?
Please do not make Americans fight giant monsters.

Those gun nuts do not understand the meaning of "overkill," and will simply use weapon after weapon of mass destruction (WMD) until the monster is dead, or until they run out of weapons.

They have more WMD than there are monsters for us to fight. (More insanity here.)

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Post by Maxentius » 2008-06-08 02:54pm

Cykeisme wrote: Wasn't the Emperor buddies with Eldrad Ulthran?
As I recall, Eldrad went to tell The Emperor that Horus was up to no good, and the Emperor didn't really believe him.
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Post by Adrian Laguna » 2008-06-08 05:23pm

Sidewinder wrote:According to the Wikipedia articles on the Space Wolves and the Space Marines, Russ allowed ONE chapter to be created from his legion (other than the Space Wolves, of course), the Wolf Brothers, who "were eradicated due to rampant mutation of the unstable Space Wolf geneseed."
The Space Wolves are fucking huge anyway. They hide it by keeping most of their forces out on campaign, but I wouldn't be surprised if each one of their Great Companies was almost a Chapter unto itself.

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Post by Adrian Laguna » 2008-06-08 05:24pm

Adrian Laguna wrote:
Sidewinder wrote:
Crom wrote:The entire Space Wolf Chapter and their derivative Chapters would gather behind Russ.
According to the Wikipedia articles on the Space Wolves and the Space Marines, Russ allowed ONE chapter to be created from his legion (other than the Space Wolves, of course), the Wolf Brothers, who "were eradicated due to rampant mutation of the unstable Space Wolf geneseed."
The Space Wolves are fucking huge anyway. They hide it by keeping most of their forces out on campaign, but I wouldn't be surprised if each one of their Great Companies was almost a Chapter unto itself.

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Post by andrewgpaul » 2008-06-08 06:40pm

Adrian, I think you forgot a reply there :)

IIRC, the Space Wolves' Great Companies are larger than codex companies, but not by that much - 120-150 Marines or so. Plus there's 12 of them, not 10. So the Space Wolves may be double the size of a codex Chapter. Of course that disregards the fact that if they're constantly out and about they're not going to be at 'nominal' strength very often.
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Post by Connor MacLeod » 2008-06-08 07:23pm

I get the impression from the King novels (which I just finished wolfblade a month or so ago) that the Space Wolves don't really bother having any fixed numbers. The pattern (I gather) for their operation runs along these lines:

- Recruits are taken from Fenris and trained, and undergo the scout transformation still on Fenris. Those deemed worthy of being fully transformed become Blood Claws.

Blood Claws (along with the Great Wolf's company, the Rune Priests, Iron Priests, Wolf PRiests, ,and so on) all remain on Fenris, perhaps with one or two other companies on Fenris. The others are all out doing what Space Wolves do, only retunring to Fenris when they need new recruits. I'm not sure whether they're assigned or "lured" to a given company.. I forget whether it was indicated or not.

Anyhow, in addition to the eleven or so Great Companies, who all seem to operate independently (with their own ships, equipment, and whatnot.), there are the GReat Wolf's own, the support elements, and a variable pool of Blood Claws (and scouts) on Fenris. The Blood claws presumably are additional reserve forces (in case of a mission cropping up, Like Ragnar faced in the first and second novels) as well as being replacement troops. Plus the scouts (hwoever many they have.)

On top of that, you have apparently "detached" groups like the Wolfblades serving with house Belisarius (about 2 dozen of them) - with possibilities of wolves assigned elswhere (Shrines, outposts, other recruiting locales, and whatnot.)

I got the imrpession from the novels as well that the actual number of Blood Fangs per pack is also variable (I recall numbers of 15-20+ per "pack") which can further cause variance. (nevermind that Grey Hunters and probably Long Fangs are by "initiation" only, which adds to further variability.)

Also, ,depending on the sources (or specific game systems, IE regular 40K, EPic, etc.) it may indicate that numbers can vary according to other reasons (conflicts can, supposeldy lead to temporary increases in numbers beyond Codex standard), as well as the usual uncertaiinty over "number of chapters" and the secretive/independent natures of the Chapters themselves.

Edit: Space Marine numbers seem to fall into the same category as the "size of the Imperial Guard/Navy/number of planets in the Imperium" - you can make some conservative estimates or guesses about it.. approxiomate a potential or "rough" upper limit, but that's about it - there's too much variance and uncertainty to pin down an exact number.

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Post by Connor MacLeod » 2008-06-08 07:30pm

Oh, and as for Draco here's the text I have of that particular bit where he reaches the Emperor's citadel and such.. though its fucking huge. Also, to avoid spoilers, its tiny.

I'm largely providing it because it interesting into the capabilities and nature of the GEoM as he is in the Golden Throne, and just how active he is.

Here now at last was savage grandeur. Here was the Column of Glory itself.
Under a vaulted dome so lofty that clouds had formed, a slim tower of multi-hued metals rose half a kilometre high. The suits of White Scar and Imperial Fist Marines, who had died defending this palace nine thousand years earlier, studded that column. Within those shattered suits their bones still hung. Their skulls still grinned from open faceplates.
Crowds of young psykers, robed as acolytes, prayed there under the watchful gaze of their instructors. Soon those psykers would be led onward to be soul-bound, agonized and blinded, and consecrated for service.
Squads of tall helmeted Emperor's Companions stood to attention vigilantly, armed with laser-spears and plasma guns, black cloaks a swirl around naked torsos of tattooed corded muscle. Dissonant music — gongs, harps — boomed and twanged and rippled, matching the pulse of ancient, adored machinery. Incense reeked. Jaq was currently wearing the robes of a secretary to a Cardinal, Meh'Lindi was a battle-sister of the Adepta Sororitas, Googol was a Cardinal's majordomo, while Grimm was a tech-priest.
Two Titans flanked the great archway that led onward, serving as columns, one blood-red, one purple. High over the archway, in obsidian, the wide winged emblem of the
Imperium was mounted. The bowed carapaces of these giant fighting robots sustained golden mosaic roofing in which, as Jaq knew, were buried the heavy macro cannons and multi-launchers of the Titans, just as their great cleated feet were locked underfloor. Purity seals and devout banners dangled.
By each side of the archway sagged a power fist which could seize and crush to liquid any unpermitted interloper. The other jointed arm of each Titan terminated in a massive, poised defense laser.
Inside the jutting armoured turtle-head of each Titan, rotas of warrior adepts of the Collegia Titanica had roosted on honour-guard during thousands of years. During thousands of years those two Titans had stood as columns, immobile, statuesque, awing all who approached. Yet in ultimate emergency their plasma generators could presumably power up rapidly from stand-by mode. Energy could flow through hydroplastics coupled to actuators. The electrically-motivated fiber bundles that served as muscles could tear their heaviest weapons free from the roof, bringing tonnes crashing down as a blockade. The robots could wrench their feet free. They could open fire devastatingly. During overhauls throughout the millennia the appropriate maintenance litanies would have been chanted faithfully.
Even on stand-by, Jaq suspected that those power fists might flex and pluck a body from the floor if the devotees in those turtle-heads saw fit...
"How did we get here?" whispered Googol, aghast with wonder.
"Per via obscura et luminosa," replied Jaq. "By the shining, hidden path."
Time twisted.
Time shifted.
Times was, and was not.
An eerie silver power flowed through Jaq, as though he
had invoked it by those words. The power used his mind as its conductor. He sensed how the time stream itself was being negated and annulled.
Some psykers of the highest level could distort time thus. Not Jaq, hitherto.
Never Jaq.
Yet now...
Was he possessed1?
By no daemon, certainly. But by the shining path itself. To his senses that path now appeared to be the track of a phosphorescent arrow through twisted geometries. The arrow had accumulated a charge at its point till that point could transfix the fabric of time itself, pinning time temporarily like a moth with a needle through its spine...
"Run now!" cried Jaq.
Did he and his abnormal family flit like hummingbirds which seem to flicker directly from one point in space to another, passing in and out of existence? Afterwards Jaq believed they must have darted thus — across the static, time-stopped Chamber of Glory, past the frozen Companions, and through the Titan Archway between the motionless menacing colossi...
And still the lustrous arrow impaled the tissue of time...
Throbbing pipes ribbed the walls of the vast throne room. The muscles of the room were thick power cables feeding stegosaurian engines. The air was spiked with crisp ozone and bitter myrrh, and ointmented with balmy, somewhat greasy fragrances. The holiest battle banners, icons, and golden fetishes flanked the arena of dedication where psykers were soul-bound.
Squads of Emperor's Companions who guarded that vast hall, a mob of tech-priests ministering to the machinery, a gaudy Cardinal Palatinate and his entourage, a red-robed High Lord of Terra and his staff — not to mention clusters of Astropaths, chirurgeons, scholastics, battlemasters: all were motionless.
The soaring, tube-ridged throne resembled some fossilized, metastasized sloth crafted by some mad master of the Adeptus Titanicus. This enormous, sacred prosthetic device —more precious by far than any gold — framed the wizened, mummy face of the God. Who looked not; though he saw through eyes of the mind, saw far beyond his throne room and his palace and the solar system. Who breathed not; yet he lived more fiercely than any mortal, enduring a psychically supercharged life-in-death.
"WE ARE CURIOUS," came a mighty, anguished thought which itself transcended time.
"WE HAVE FOLLOWED YOUR INTRUSION INTO OUR SANCTUARY, OUR ANTRUM AND ADYTUM."
"My Lord..." Jaq sank to his knees. "I beg to report to you before I am destroyed. I may have uncovered a major conspiracy—"
"THEN WE WILL STRIP YOUR SOUL BARE. RELAX, MORTAL MAN, OR YOU WILL SURELY DIE IN SUCH PAIN AS WE ALWAYS ENDURE."
Jaq breathed deeply, slowly, stilling the panic that fluttered under his ribs like a trapped bird. He surrendered himself.
A hurricane roared through his mind.
If the story that he had thought to relate were a tangled forest — and if each event in that story were a tree — then within moments all the leaves were stripped away from all of the trees, denuding them to bare wintry twigs, to a raw basic life without the foliage of memories.
He was drained of his story; that was sucked from him in a trice, all of those leaves whirling into the mind-maw of the Master.
Jaq gagged. Jaq drooled.
He was an imbecile, less than an imbecile.
He was less than a new-born baby.
He neither knew where he was, nor who he was — nor what it even meant to be a someone.
The Inquisitor sprawled. All that was known to his body was distress, the gurglings of the guts, breath, and light.
Light from afar...
Abruptly, all memory flooded back. On that instant, each leaf sprouted anew to recloak the forest of his life.
"WE HAVE PUT BACK WHAT WE TOOK AND TASTED, INQUISITOR."
Trembling, Jaq regained his kneeling posture and wiped his lips and chin. The previous moments were a hideous limbo, unknowable, immeasurable. He was Jaq Draco again.
"WE ARE MANY, INQUISITOR." The voice boomed in his mind almost gently — if gently was how an avalanche would sweep away a doomed village, if gently was how a scalpel might strip a life to the bare aching bones.
"HOW ELSE COULD WE RULE OUR IMPERIUM—?"
"AS WELL AS WINNOW THE WARP—?"
"HOW ELSE?"
The Emperor's mind-voice had dissociated into several voices, as if his great soul co-existed in fragments that barely hung together.
"SO DOES THE HYDRA THREATEN US—?"
"—IMPERILLING OUR GREAT AND AWFUL PLAN TO STEER HUMANITY?"
"DID WE OURSELVES DEVISE THE HYDRA?"
"PERHAPS IN A PART OF US, SINCE THIS HYDRA PROMISES A PATH?"
"SURELY A MALEVOLENT PATH; FOR HOW COULD HUMANITY EVER FREE ITSELF?"
"THEN WE MUST BE MALEVOLENT TOO; FOR WE HAVE EXPELLED OUR SENTIMENTALITY LONG AGO. HOW ELSE COULD WE HAVE ENDURED? HOW ELSE COULD WE HAVE IMPOSED OUR RULE?"
"YET BY VIRTUE OF THAT WE ARE PURE AND UNCONTAMINATED BY WEAKNESS. WE ARE GRIM SALVATION."
Beside Jaq, the Squat twitched as if he had heard himself named. At that moment did the voice resonate within the little man? Jaq felt that he was listening to a mighty mind-machine argue with itself in a way that no Imperial courtier had perhaps ever heard before, and that no High Lord of Terra even suspected could occur. Were Meh'Lindi and Googol aware of the voices in the way that Jaq was? He sensed the fabric of time attempting to tear free, and guessed that not much longer of this strange stasis remained.
"NOTHING THAT SAFEGUARDS HUMANITY CAN BE EVIL, NOT EVEN THE MOST STRENUOUS INHUMANITY. IF THE HUMAN RACE FAILS, IT HAS FAILED FOREVER."
Maybe Jaq was too young by hundreds, by thousands of years, and his intellect was too puny to comprehend the multiplex mind of the Master who was forever on overview, whose thoughts battered in his mind. Or maybe the Master's mind had become chaotic. Not warped by the Chaos it surveyed, oh no, but divided amongst itself as its heroic grasp on existence ever so slowly weakened...
"WHEN WE CONFRONTED THE CORRUPTED, HOMICIDAL HORUS WHO ONCE USED TO SHINE LIKE THE BRIGHTEST STAR, WHO USED TO BE OUR BELOVED FAVOURITE — WHEN THE FATE OF THE GALAXY HUNG BY A THREAD — WERE WE NOT COMPELLED TO EXPEL ALL COMPASSION? ALL LOVE? ALL JOY? THOSE WENT AWAY. HOW ELSE COULD WE HAVE ARMOURED OURSELVES? EXISTENCE IS TORMENT, A TORMENT THAT MUST NOURISH US. EVIDENTLY WE MUST STRIVE TO BE THE FIERCE REDEEMER OF MAN, YET WHAT WILL REDEEM US?"
"Great Lord," whimpered Jaq, "did you know of the hydra before now?"
"NO, AND WE SHALL SURELY ACT IN DUE TIME—"
"YET SURELY WE KNEW. HOW COULD WE NOT KNOW?"
"—ONCE WE HAVE ANALYZED THE INFORMATION WITHIN THIS SUB-MIND OF OURS."
"HEAR THIS, JAQ DRACO: ONLY TINY PORTIONS OF US CAN HEED YOU, OTHERWISE WE NEGLECT OUR IMPERIUM, OF WHICH OUR SCRUTINY MUST NOT FALTER FOR AN INSTANT. FOR TIME DOES NOT HALT EVERYWHERE WITHIN THE REALM OF MAN. INDEED TIME ONLY HALTS FOR YOU."
"WE ARE AN EVER-WATCHFUL GOD, ARE WE NOT? DID YOU HOPE TO GAIN OUR UNDIVIDED ATTENTION?"
"HOW ELSE SHOULD WE SOUL-BIND PSYKERS AND OVERVIEW THE WARP AND BEAM THE ASTRONOMICAN BEACON AND SURVIVE AND RECEIVE INFORMATION AND GRANT AUDIENCES ALL AT ONCE, UNLESS WE ARE MANY?"
"AND YET STILL MISS SO MUCH, SO VERY MUCH? SUCH AS THAT WHICH GUIDED YOU HERE."
"OUR SPIRIT GUIDED YOU."
"NO: ANOTHER SPIRIT, A REFLECTION OF OUR GOODNESS WHICH WE THRUST FROM US."
"WE ARE THE ONLY SOURCE OF GOODNESS, SEVERE AND DRASTIC. THERE IS NO OTHER SOURCE OF HOPE THAN US. WE ARE AGONIZINGLY ALONE."
Contradictions! These warred in Jaq's mind just as they seemed to coexist in the Emperor's own multimind.
Was another power for salvation present in the galaxy, unknown to the suffering Emperor — concealed from him, though somehow partaking of his essence? How could that be?
And what of the hydra? Did the Emperor truly know of it or not — even now? Might he refuse to acknowledge what Jaq had reported to him?
The Emperor's voices faded from Jaq's mind as time tried to stretch back into shape.

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Connor MacLeod
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Re: WH40K what if: Leman Russ returns

Post by Connor MacLeod » 2008-06-08 07:42pm

Sidewinder wrote: (Note: some fanfic writers believe a revived Emperor will make peace with the Eldar and the Tau, who'll become Imperium allies against Chaos. Considering the extreme xenophobia and human supremist ideas the Emperor apparently espoused, I find that highly unlikely.)
I dunno bout "back when" sincee I've only dealt with that early era stuff in the game fluff, but we know that the Imperium HAS allied with the Eldar on multiple occasions (Ichar IV against Hive Fleet Kraken, the Gothic War against Abbadon, the 13th Black Crusade again against Abbadon, limited cooperation in the Dawn of War novels, etc.) IT's not so much a direct alliance as one of convenience and mutual foes. And some humans (esp more radical Ordos Xenos members like Inquisitor Horst) seem to interact with humans more frequently (the old "Illuminati" stuff - again most notably the Inquisition War novels, being a good eaxmple.)

The Imperium and tau HAVE cooperated in limited fashion, but never quite to the scope the Imperium and Eldar have (For the Emperor and Fire Warrior are the only examples I can think of.) More often than not, the Tau tend to hold back and then take advantage of Imperial weaknesses or fialures to expand their own territory and ambitions, rather than go to humanity's aid.

We also know that humanity (or individuals) have hired/employed Kroot in some fashion, even inquistiors (one of the ARmageddon novels had a Kroot as an Inquisitorial agent.)

I vaguely recall somewhere reading that the Imperium back when dealt with aliens based on certain criteria. If they were actively hostile, they were suppressed. If they were in the path of something humanity wanted (say, a habitable planet, archeotech, whatever.) they were attacked. If they were primitive or generally didn't bother humanity, they were left alone (at least for the time being.) Don't quote me on that, though. And even then, it still doesn't rule out the xenophobia that was encouraged (I'm sure there were still cases of even harmless aliens being purged.. the Imperium doing more than one thing at oncec is hardly unprecedented given its largely decentralized nature.)

In braod strokes, the "current" Imperium's views on Aliens tend to be "whatever works best at the moment"- alliance conquest or genocide all still occur, depending on which is most important. And of course, some threats are always biger than others (IE the Tyranids vs the Tau, or even the Orks.) The Emperor is almost certainly aware of this (The fact he seems to champion/protect notable individuals like Ciaphas Cain or LEoten Semper from the Rennie BFG novels lends me to believe that he at least favors/tolerates the practice.) So if he were alive, I imagine he would "tolerate" aliens only insofar as they were not a threat, but might go back and conquer/wipe them out at his leisure.

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Crom
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Post by Crom » 2008-06-09 01:31am

Sidewinder wrote:IIRC, the Emperor intended to open a warp gate to the Webway so man can travel across the galaxy without exposing themselves to the Immaterium's corruptive effects; the Golden Throne was built to control the warp gate. During the Horus Heresy, daemons attempted to attack Holy Terra through this gate (thanks to Magnus' stupid decision to use sorcery to warn the Emperor of Horus' treachery, which brought down all the wards the Emperor put up to prevent daemons from doing so); this was the reason the Emperor ordered the gate sealed.
I was under the impression that he needed to be physically on the Throne to keep the Warp from consuming Terra. So, were he to be healed by Russ, he'd still have to address that problem.
Anyways, most people agree that the loyalist chapters will support Russ' attempt to revive the Emperor. Any guesses on what the other races will do in response? Chaos throwing everything it has against Holy Terra in an attempt to kill the Emperor before he gets the seed of the Tree of Life? The Eldar throwing everything they have against the Imperium, or throwing themselves at the Emperor's feet in the hopes he'll order that they be spared? Will the C'tan and the Tyrannids even give a damn?
I think that the threat of a newly active Emperor would not be immediately perceivable. For one thing, the IoM is a large fucked up place. The Emperor would probably spend a lot of time just straightening out his own house, getting the AdMech back in line, cleaning up the Inquisition (some of whom are going to go bat-shit insane when GEoM shows up). I doubt the Eldar are going to freak out, some of them were around when the GEoM was around the first time and they seemed to make it out alright.

Chaos is not really in a position to strike at him. Before they had the Traitor Legions in range of Terra, now the bulk of their forces are pinned down at the Cadian Gate. The C'tan probably won't care too much, they've got their build-the-Great-Ward-and-win thing, though I think there's one on Mars that might have a problem if the Emperor finds out about him.

The Tyrannids probably won't care. The Tau might realize something's up if the Emperor decides to clean their clocks.
"Our people were meant to be living gods, warrior-poets who roamed the stars bringing civilization, not cowards and bullies who prey on the weak and kill each other for sport. I never imagined they'd prove themselves so inferior. I didn't betray our people – they betrayed themselves."

-Gaheris Rhade, Gene Roddenberry's Andromeda

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Zablorg
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Post by Zablorg » 2008-06-09 02:31am

If the Emperor was revived, I think he would seize the opportunity to wipe out those pesky Eldar now that they are weak, for starters.

Also, to maintain the sacred status quo, the forces of the Warp would probably go batshit and send epic numbers to Terra to kill the Emperor, and as they finish killing the last resistance and head towards the Emperor, the warp-rift would begin to close, leaving them only enough time to revert the powerful psyker back to his crippled form.
Jupiter Oak Evolution!

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