Hello again 40k fans! Chris Morgan, Chief Librarian of the Forge the Narrative Podcast, is here again with the next weekly segment of Tomes of the Librarius. Also, check the Tactics Corner for more great articles!
The wars in Imperium Secundus continued, with forces from the Word Bearers, Death Guard, World Eaters, and Night Lords harrying the infant empire from all sides. Ironically, it is the unwitting help of Konrad Curze that lets the Triumverate of Sanguinius, Guilliman, and Lion El’Johnson know that the Emperor lives. They abandon their pocket empire and set out for Terra through the madness of the Ruinstorm, a giant warp storm summoned to cut off these three legions from the wars on Terra’s side. It is on this journey through more demon-infested planets and warp-wrought nightmares that Sanguinius is tested yet again. By now, his visions of his death at the hands of Horus are being weaponized by the demons of the warp in an effort to tempt him to falling to the powers of chaos. Their nightmare journey leads them to Davin, where Sanguinius stood where Horus stood, and was tempted how Horus was tempted. He was given the choice to sacrifice himself for the Emperor and doom his son’s to the nascent horror of the Black Rage, or he could gain the power to defeat Horus and live as a servant to the dark gods. His choice – death for the greater good or glory for himself – was a window through which he saw how Horus fell. In the end, he made the choice to sacrifice himself for his father’s dream. One can only wonder how things might have been different if Horus had valued the dream of humanity more than he valued himself…
Davin was destroyed, and the Ruinstorm’s power was broken with it. With the storm conquered, Sanguinius and his brothers went their separate ways. Sanguinius and the Blood Angels made straight for Terra. The Lion began a scorched-earth campaign against the homeworlds and lifelines of the traitor legions, cutting them off from reinforcements and resupply. Guilliman took up the rear, and crashed his legion against the screen of Iron Warriors left to defend the rear of the traitor forces.
After reuniting with Dorn, the Khan, Russ, and the other loyalist forces, Sanguinius led a sortie against the traitors embattled in the Beta Garmon system. Uniting the armies and legios of titans, the Blood Angels assaulted the traitor-held capital world, while the White Scars struck at their own targets. The battle was immense, seeing the deaths of hundreds of god-machines. Sanguinius himself was responsible for the death of a traitor Imperator-class titan, slaughtering the crew and decapitating the machine. Though they knew it was only a delaying action, it ended more quickly than they desired. Horus dropped a fortress on the capital as soon as it was taken, and sacrificed an astropathic choir to reignite some of the madness of the now-defeated Ruinstorm. Horus’ path to Terra was now open.
The Siege of Terra
The seemingly-numberless hosts of the Warmaster arrayed themselves by the walls of the continent-fortress that is the Imperial Palace. Angron, at the head of throng, called up to the walls for the Imperium’s surrender. Sanguinius stood on the walls, and stared down at the daemon-primarch in defiance. Their eyes locked, the armies waited until Angron looked away, saying that there would be no surrender. The order to attack was given. Legions of space marines, god-engines, demons, and hordes of human thralls threw themselves against Dorn’s prepared defenses. Cataclysmic war ensued, and devastation was wrought on both sides. As the walls surrounding the Eternity Gate began to crumble, Sanguinius stood alone at the gate while his forces withdrew to the next layer of defense. Alone, he held off the entire army arrayed before him for days until a champion came forward to challenge him again. Kha’Bandha, the Bloodthirter who was defeated by Sanguinius at Signus, came forward to take his vengeance against the Angel. Their battle was titanic across the earth and sky, each wounding each other gravely. Things seemed to be going badly for the tired and wounded Angel, until in a last surge of strength he broke the greater daemon’s back over his knee. With his great foe defeated, Sanguinius withdrew to rejoin the forces who had successfully pulled back thanks to his holding action.
The siege raged on. With Guilliman’s legion coming up the rear, Horus made a gamble. Lowering the shield on the Vengeful Spirit, he left himself open to attack from the Emperor. Seeing the opportunity to end Horus’ treachery, the Emperor, his Custodes, Sanguinius, and Dorn teleported aboard the ship to face Horus. They were all separated from each other in transit, and it was Sanguinius who faced the traitor first. In a moment that has become a fulcrum of 40k lore, the chaos-empowered Warmaster killed his brother, but not before Sanguinius created a vulnerability in Horus defense. Down below, the psychic backlash of Sanguinius’ pained death sent his sons into a frenzy, where they charged off of the walls and ravaged the traitors in a mad fury, nearly breaking the siege. Moments after his death, Sanguinius’ last action would spell the doom of Horus as the Emperor exploited it to his downfall. When the dust settled, Horus – body and soul – was dead, the Emperor wounded, and Sanguinius’ sons would be forever cursed with the memory of his death. His blood was gathered by the apothecaries of the legion to preserve future generations, and his body was put in stasis to be entombed underneath the Fortress Monastery of Baal.
Its Okay to Cry
Well, that’s the end of that story. Excuse me while I go and grieve my fictional future father… or not! I have my Sanguinius built and ready to play in some games of Horus Heresy, and I intend to change the course of history! Well, that might be a stretch, but I am glad to finally get to play a game with my primarch at last!
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