The Radiant Flight



"We monopolize glory, through us it is manifest."

 

 

Origins

 

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orn the Bronze Skulls, the early history of the Radiant Flight chapter is well documented and mostly eventless. The chapter was formed during the 26th founding as a response to the growing Tau threat, the vast majority of their engagements as the Bronze Skulls took part in the Damocles Crusade.





The founding chapter master of the Bronze Skulls was a Black Consuls veteran by the name of Fordun Marris. Marris had a history of strict adherence to the Codex Astartes, his battle experience was accrued almost entirely against marauding Ork Waaghs and traitorous rebellions. Marris was chosen to head the Bronze Skulls at the last minute when the planned chapter master, another veteran Black Consul, was killed by an Ork Nob. Marrisí limited experience and inability to think creatively were showcased in his inadequate performance during the Damocles crusade. The chapter managed very few victories over the course of the campaign and the inexperience of the command group showed strongly in their inability to adapt to battlefield situations, the casualties suffered were disastrous.
The planet the Bronze Skulls were given as a home world was not famous for its warriors or subject to any harsh environments as is usual for the planets taken by marine chapters. The world of Khyrnith was chosen primarily for its strategic positioning near the Tau empire. When the Chapter set about replenishing its ranks, the population was generally less suited to the process of transplantation and training required to become a space marine, the amount of failed procedures and mortalities was much higher than average, as well the recruits were more resistant to the psychotherapy and indoctrination which worked so easily on the feral world populations. Those who managed to survive the training and extended indoctrination process were proven to be exceptionally pious and dedicated marines compared to scouts from feral worlds.
Eager to prove himself after his shortcomings during the Damocles campaign, Fordun Marris, the chapter master of the Bronze Skulls, lead his chapter far and wide in search of battles and glory, but his tactics were uninspired and his style of leadership unsuitable to the men he was leading.

The Amardon Incident

During an operation on Amardon III, The 5th company suffered grievous losses while fighting alongside members of the Disciples space marine chapter. Records of the event show that before deploying into the thickest area of fighting on the hive, officers of both chapters were involved in a heated dispute. Eschewing their standard methodical stance, the 5th company deployed into the thick of fighting on the planet without thorough reconnaissance. Once on the ground, the marines were ambushed by members of the Swords of Darkhon, a renegade marine cult, caught off guard and out of their element the 5th company suffered heavy losses and were unable to support the Disciples in their final push on the cultís stronghold. Amardon III was made the subject of exterminatus after the Disciples and Radiant Flight chapters were unable to unroot the cult presence, a fact that stung the pride of the Disciples chapter who focus on keeping citizen casualties to a minimum.

The number of founding members still active dropped steadily until only the first company had any Damocles veterans remaining.
When Hive Fleet Behemoth hit the eastern fringe, Marris took his 1st and 2nd companies and rushed to the defence of Madilus, a small world in the grips of Tyranid infestation. Only the 2nd company returned from the battle on Madilus, and the story they told was one of bravery and mass carnage, they explained the way Madilus has sacrificed his life and that of the first company in an attempt to save the planet, battling off Tyranid after Tyranid before being eventually overtaken by the endless horde.
Ordo Xenos investigation into the incident on Madilus has proved puzzling, while the world was indeed infested by the Tyranids, all records in the area show the invading fleet was quite small and, by all statistics, should have been easily handled by the two companies present.
Upon returning to Khyrnith the company master of the 2nd company, Lytharion Willn, took control and immediately began rebuilding the chapter. The losses of one company rarely cause a chapter to pause altogether while they recruit, however Willn chose to use this time to retrain the chapter.
With Willn at the helm, the chapter's practices and doctrines changed greatly, while they had favored prolonged bombardments under Marris they began to specialize in surgical strikes and fast moving combat under Willn. The new command group of the chapter decided to solidify their direction by changing the chapter's name, while the Bronze skulls would be stubborn and slow, the true sons of Khyrnith would be swift and true, and they would be adaptive yet constant. After meditating their purpose in the Imperium and the source of their strength, the new command renamed the chapter The Radiant Flight.

Home World

 

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calm world dominated by temperate plain lands and mountain ranges, the planet Khyrnith is far from the norm of space marine home worlds. Famous among surrounding planets of the south-eastern Segmentum Ultima for its scholars and philosophers, Khyrnith enjoyed a relatively peaceful existence. The greatest threat to the world was not from xenos but the Ordo Hereticus who viewed the academic bend of the planet as blasphemous and extremely dangerous. Khyrnith would likely be little more than another unremembered victim of exterminatus if the Damocles crusade had not been initiated. Chosen as the base world for a new chapter who would serve primarily to support the established insitutions in their crusade against the Tau empire, Khyrnith was protected at least momentarily from the inquisition's ambitions.
The world is ruled by scholarly elite, all decisions are made through debate and no official ruler is appointed, any disagreements with law are handled similarly, and several times in Khyrnith history a man of humble bearing has risen instantly up the social ladder by forming a flawless counter argument to current practice. This system of decision making coupled with a dedication to the imperial creed shielded Khyrnith from the constant ideological harassment of the Tau Empire, however it also sparked a flame of distrust in Ordo Hereticus inquisitors who visited the planet.

Epistolary Marlis: 4th company librarianís log

We have answered the distress call of the planet Remos IV. The intelligence indicates that the cult controlling the world is a splinter of The Sword of Darkhon, black legion affiliates of small renown. Warmaster Isusí initial proposal for the campaign is a direct assault on cult supply lines followed by bombardment of the capital city, I have voiced my distaste for this method. The Sword of Darkhon have been known to deal with the Keeper of Secrets Shilínth who I encountered several years ago during a campaign near Tau space. Any information on Shilínth would prove invaluable in solving the riddle of lust. Reclusiarch Eurik will no doubt have his own misguided idea on the matter. Debate is scheduled to begin tomorrow.


Khyrnith had a martial history only in its earliest days, far back in a time only remembered by artistic renditions and ancient stories, they relied heavily on nearby worlds for protection and more than once their miniscule PDF had been overrun by small Ork incursions.
The population of Khyrnith were slow to accept the status of home world they had been given. While they accepted the presence of the marines, perhaps due to their lacking the military strength to do otherwise, they did not integrate them into their political structure. The Bronze Skulls made few steps towards ingraining themselves in the Khyrnith society. More interested in making up for his weak performance against the Tau than forging any real connection with the citizens of his chapterís home, Marris allowed the world to develop their ideas on their power armored neighbors unchecked. The coming of the Astartes affected Khyrnithís ideological path quite dramatically. With a new example of glory sitting on their doorstep, the citizens of Khyrnith began to rediscover the concepts of martial bravery and many families set about raising their youngsters to join the Bronze Skulls.
Unlike the average marine initiate who is drawn from a deathworld or Hive, the aspiring Bronze Skulls already had a well developed understanding of imperial doctrine and Astartes history. The new recruits entered their training with many predefined ideas about what their purpose would be as a space marine, they often held stubbornly to these ideals and indoctrination procedures were slow at best.
Even with the new training regimes many families had taken up to prepare their sons, few aspiring Bronze Skulls came close to matching the necessary level of fitness to undergo the process of becoming a space marine. Following the Codex Astartes religiously, the recruitment yields of the Bronze Skulls suffered greatly due to their inability to adapt to their recruits.

Battlefield Doctrine

 

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he Radiant Flight favour precision raids and mobile combat. The subject of any attack is analyzed thoroughly beforehand, scouting parties of bikers are deployed ahead of time to get the lay of the land and report back to the commander who will then initiate a quick moving assault on the enemy's key holdings or officers, such strikes favor mechanized marines geared for close quarter fighting. While generally inexperienced in combat before becoming marines, the members of the chapter draw heavily on ancient tales and images of glorious warriors from the Imperium's history and that of Khyrnith. The marines will often decorate their armor with iconography and paraphernalia reminiscent of ancient warriors. The average Radiant Flight tactical marineís regalia are more comparable to that of another chapterís company champion. The tendencies towards self imposed glory are seen as vain and sometimes heretical by other chapters.
When the Supreme Command Group sees an opportunity for especially glorious intervention they will deploy the 1st companyís terminators en masse. The teleportation ability of the tactical dreadnought armor suits the combat style of the Radiant Flight perfectly and they have often come to the defense of the Adeptus Mechanicus, attempting to forge a strong relationship with the tech adepts that will result in more suits of the hallowed armour finding their way into the armory.

Organization

 

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he Radiant Flight are generally close adherents to the Codex Astartes. They maintain the standard 10 companies and organize them generally along the lines of codex policy, with a few exceptions. One aspect of the chapterís organization




especially distinct from the standard Astartes policies is their chain of command. Every companyís command group is composed of a representative from the Reclusium, the Librarium and the 1st company, this final member is known as the Warmaster. There is no seniority among the command group, all decisions are made as a collective group after a process of debate. Some companies contain especially gifted minds in their command groups, and due to this have leaned more towards the ideals of one of the bodies the group is drawn from.
The chapter is lead by the Supreme Command Group, composed of the Supreme Warmaster, the Chief Librarian, the Master of Sanctity and their accompanying support staff. The general direction of the chapter as well as the specific deployment of the 1st company is decided by this unit. It is notable that most of the decisions are made by the Supreme Warmaster, as the other members of the group are less interested in the actual military deployment of the chapter and more in its ethical and ideological direction.
The 1st first company is composed of the chapter's veterans. The 1st company does not have its own command group, instead answering directly to the Supreme Command Group. Unlike most chapters of their age, the Radiant Flight have been able to attain a respectable armory complete with a number of tactical dreadnought suits. The members of the first company are trained in several methods of mobile combat and are often deployed in different ways depending on their situation and objectives. The chapterís few dreadnoughts are members of the first company, they are very rarely deployed due in part to their value to the chapter but primarily to their incompatibility with general Radiant Flight combat methods, the Supreme Reclusiarch is the only officer who has shown any notable use of the venerable brothers.
Apart from the 1st company and command organization the Radiant Flight operate along codex norms. The chapter operates 4 battle companies composed of a command group, 6 tactical squads, 2 assault squads, 2 devastator squads and accompanying armor and support personnel. The 6th and 7th companies are tactical reserve companies, each containing 10 tactical squads. The 8th and 9th companies are assault and devastator reserve companies respectively, each containing 10 squads.
The 10th company of the Radiant Flight is it's scout company, the 10th company has been known to fluctuate in size even more than an average scout company due to the unpredictability of Khyrnithís recruitment yields.

Belief System

 

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rimary in the beliefs of the Radiant Flight is the idea of Manifest Destiny. The members of the chapter may harbor differing opinions on other topics but all share the knowledge that the galaxy is rightfully that of the Imperium of man, and that any being that would stand against the acquisition and defense of it is ignorant and pitiful, an insect to be swatted away by the righteous hand.
Within the chapter a debate rages on the correct method to enact the true destiny of man. The two bodies most embroiled in this debate are the Librarium and Reclusium.

Reclusiarch Falken: 5th company chaplainís log

Upon returning from the purging of a Swords of Darkhon cult on Amardon III I was assaulted by a message from the presiding commander of the Disciples chapter who we are operating alongside in the Amardon region. I have been accused of heresy and weakness towards chaos, he has referenced an occasion on Remos IV that I am unfamiliar with. I dearly hope that Marlis has not dug deeper than we thought. Regardless, this slight to the honour of The Radiant Flight will not be ignored. I have researched the history of these Disciples and discovered a pattern of sympathy and laxity, to be insulted by a chapter who lacks the strength to even hate the Tau is truly stinging. I have scheduled a meeting with the Disciples commander and intend to settle things.


The debate is drawn most squarely on the concept of chaos. The librarians of the Radiant Flight believe that chaos is an inseparable aspect of human identity and that it is therefore a thing with unbound potential for righteousness. The Librarians claim that refusing to use chaos is akin to an able bodied man refusing to fight facing his enemy, instead thrusting his exposed back towards his foe while he attempts to claw out his own heart.
The Reclusium sees chaos as all that is weak and cheap in the human character, they hold strongly to the belief that a true faith and spirit will overcome any adversary. To the chaplains, using chaos energies would be an act of forfeit, giving up the true potential of humanity for an easier satisfaction. While they accept the power that chaos would bring the chapter, the members of the Reclusium know that the perfection of humanity is not manifest by power alone but also by courage and purity in the corrupting face of fear.
Due to the system of decision making the chapter has inherited from Khyrnith, the Librarians have so far been disallowed to pursue any experiments with chaos energy, however the Radiant Flight libraries carry an amount of heretical literature far and beyond what any puritan inquisitor would consider acceptable.
While disputes have thus far remained peaceful, inner politicking has slowed down several campaigns as every encounter with chaos powers is debated thoroughly beforehand, many planets have suffered weeks of corruption while the Radiant Flight orbited above their heads arguing over the correct move.
both parties are extremely dedicated to their positions and their bias has resulted in several gifted psykers and preachers never reaching the ranks of librarian or chaplain due to an incompatibility with the held ideals.

Gene Seed

 

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he Bronze skulls were created of Ultramarines stock and maintained their stores to the extent that the codex dictates. Due to the larger amount of failed procedures, the Radiant Flight is forced to produce gene seed faster than average and show a general laxity in the testing of their stores.

"No lesser evils!"-Battle cry of The Radiant Flight