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Col. Tartleton
13-07-2011, 02:47
In a Sibbering-like mood I've decided to expound my own fan fiction of how Marines are created and perhaps a bit of psychology afterwards. Enjoy. Laud. Criticize if you dare :evilgrin:. There's going to be some weird stuff alluded to. I've taken an unorthodox but I think reasonable explanation for no female marines. More worrying, I think I actually used some real science in there somewhat... HERESY! Oh and I think I may have even done the Latin properly in the title.

Adepts are created via a process of implanting a series of Gene Modifiers colloquially known as “Gene-Seed.” This Gene Seeding is a process involving the injection of artificially constructed retroviruses which target the fundamental structure of the aspirant’s genetics to create a familial homogenity equivalent to that in identical twins. In keeping with the idea of “seeding” this phase is called “TILLING” better known as Targeting Induced Localized Lesion in Genomes. This leads to the following stages of implanting a number of tiny tumors which due to the groundwork established by the retroviruses and a prolonged period of chemotherapy and targeted nutrition which will cultivate these tumors into entirely new organ systems or totally overhaul existing systems. Adepts will essentially become a species apart.

Regardless of the gender of the Aspirant the resulting Adept will be male and will be sterile to other humans. The TILLING process that essentially creates identical siblings of the Adepts forcing them to be become male. Compared to the truly massive genetic alterations occuring the sex change is a minor side effect. All of the various strains of the TILLING Serums are designed to create a male adept for the purposes of population control. There was a fear by the Emperor that having both genders become weaponized would lead to problems in terms of essentially creating a separate species of superhumans which would inevitably drive the inferior humans extinct. As the Adepts are designed for the protection of arguably inferior humans this would not be permissible. Furthermore it was quite clear that becoming an Aspirant was a choice offered to only the finest that had to be made individually, and that no child should be born an untested Adept, fully attuned to war from birth.

(Note, although little is known of the Sciomancy and Biomancy involved in the creation of the Primarchs and Custodes, it is known that they were neither Male or Female and were created via Parthenogenesis for this purpose. The Gene-Seed are similar to stem cells from the Primarchs. The TILLING process allows the Adepti Astartes to become compatible with the Primarchs although an Adeptus Astartes will never become a Primarch, given enough time the Adept will slowly gravitate towards them. In some instances this process has occurred (often in Psychic Adepts) at accelerated rates. Perhaps most notably in recent years in the Blood Angel Librarian called Calistarius who appears to be manifesting traits only observed in his Primarch Sanguinius. Calistarius' Lord, His Eminence Lord Cervan Dante of Baal has, due to his advanced age, manifested similar discrepancies from the rank and file of his chapter. Calistarius has shown himself to be among the most powerful Librarians in the Imperium (earning the epithet "Mephiston" meaning The Lord of Death) and Dante is far and away the greatest warrior in is Chapter.)

1.

Secondary Heart: One of the many modifications the term “Secondary Heart” belittles the massive restructuring of the circulatory system. This aspect of modification centers around the gradual creation of a Secondary Heart, increasing the size of the Primary Heart, and making systematic changes to the route of blood vessels. The Primary Heart primarily drives blood throughout the entire body while the Secondary Heart adds additional channels to the organs systems necessary for life such as the Central Nervous System, Cardiac System, etc.

The Primary heart essentially maintains normal circulation while the Secondary Heart supplements the Primary Heart with additional life support functions in the case that the primary heart is destroyed. If the Secondary Heart is destroyed the body will endure without it. With the Primary Heart incapacitated the Secondary Heart will keep the Adept alive indefinitely although reduced blood flow to the extremities would prevent significant movement. However the loss of a heart to a normal man would be catastrophic. An Adept will survive such a wound by entering a meditative state and await rescue.

The Secondary Heart Modification also allows for precision control of circulatory functions allowing a marine to reroute blood away from damaged areas temporarily by sealing off arteries and redirecting the flow. Likewise the marine may direct blood to areas at his choosing to enhance performance. This is coupled with the alterations to various other systems allows Adepts to perform strenuous activity such as sprinting effectively indefinitely.

Col. Tartleton
13-07-2011, 17:27
2.

Ossmodulla: A relatively small organ, the Ossmodulla is paired with the Biscopea. The two organs are essentially modifications of the pituitary gland. The Ossmodulla is a portmanteau of Ossify and Medulla, and as the name implies turns the core of certain structures to bone. This process begins with a massive growth spurt to hyaline tissues in the long bones, vastly extending the epiphyseal plates and sheathing the entire skeleton with additional sheets of hyaline cartilage. These will begin ossifying gradually leading to massive increases in bone size.

The bones that grow are not the bones of humans, the extensive TILLING process mentioned before has modified the Osteoblasts to produce bone using Titanium DiBoride which compares very favorably to the Hydroxylapatite found in unmodified bones. While Hydroxylapatite is a durable 5 Mohs, Titanium DiBoride is a 9.5, approaching the hardness of diamond. Coupled with the fact it can be regrown makes a marine's skeletons one of the hardest and most durable materials available.

The Titanium and Boron is introduced with the marine's food and will accumulate over the course of several years to entirely replace the Hydroxylapatite in existing bones and to form the basis of all new bone growth. The end result is an Adept with a height of seven to seven and a half feet by the time they are serviceable for the field as Scouts. A Adept's growth will taper off significantly, but the oldest Adepts will approach or surpass eight feet in height and any Adept given to a naturally large height will be exceptionally tall as well. Adepts are generally of homogenous height but exceptions do exist.

Regardless an Adept is a giant of a Man by the end of the process and enjoy the benefits of an enclosed Thoracic Cage due to the plate-like modification to the ribs that will stop most small arms fire, giving the Adept a natural armor even when naked. The skull also gains a lot of thickness in various areas turning the Adept's head into a helmet rivaling that of their ceramite armor. When Adepts face foes with weapons capable of penetrating ceramite they often remove their helmets, preferring to fight their enemies face to face. An unarmored Adept can take a BOLTER round to the face and will usually survive although they will certainly lose their soft tissues and take a severe concussion to the brain requiring extensive repair. However the repeated impacts of a burst or any of the more powerful varieties of BOLT weapons will lead to death.

Son of Sanguinius
16-07-2011, 06:52
Nice start, Colonel. A few things-

- Not a fan of Marines being able to take explosive armor penetrating rounds to the head and survive.
- I like the inclusion of females in the induction process, as well as the use of viral serums to directly manipulate DNA/cellular structure.
- For future development, I suggest some serious consideration be given to caloric consumption, marine diet, and the overall digestive tract. Considering that an Olympic swimmer like Michael Phelps can consume in excess of 12,000 calories a day while training, the amount of energy needed to fuel a Space Marine's physical body must be absurdly staggering.
- Another suggestion- When I attempted this same endeavor, one of the attributes I settled on was using enhanced adrenaline and/or artificial stimulants to allow a Marine to enhance their reflexive speed and neural firing to superhuman levels with a thought. I don't know if such an idea is physically possible, but to be operating at such a speed constantly would be extremely stressful on the mind, I think. It also ties in with the caloric requirements, as it allows a Space Marine to operate on a more manageable energy level and then jump to a superhuman state, after which they would need a power bar or something. ;)

Anyway, keep it up and I hope I've provided food for thought.

Col. Tartleton
20-07-2011, 15:25
I don't have time to do a full post on the body, but I will reply to your thoughts.

Wasn't there a marine who took a bolt through the head and was fine? It's certainly not a new thing and I'm slightly winding up how tough marines are to give them proper "destroyer of worlds" and "angels of death" status. I succinctly remember one Imperial Fist Chaplain, Lo Chang having a face that looked like a moon from all the scars of bullets that chewed his face off when they tore through his helmet. Chang's face stopped what his helmet could not :D It's like Bruce Lee in the body of an ogre...

Based on size and such I think a 40,000 calorie diet :D would be consumed when at the monastery, but a marine's life support food recycling system would be so efficient they could survive on their recycled feces and urine in the field for an extended period of time supplemented by the flesh of the dead (ideally enemies but allies and even brethren would suffice.) Personally I feel Marines need their fangs sharpened metaphorically into being truly monstrous.

I personally think a lot of their "power" can be drawn from their battle harness. Powered Armor should greatly improve strength and greatly reduce fatigue and such. Marines can run until their generator dies (years realistically.) Roughly 3500 calories = a pound of flesh or fat, which means a marine could reasonably survive on a human body for a while. But a Marine can just pop a piece of limestone into his mouth for the minerals or more likely just eat the bones.

Imperial Guard function as a mix of meat shields and jerked snacks. The Blood Angels would have an insatiable appetite though. Spraying viscera would excite a sort of carnal sexual response and they'd revel in bloodshed and cannibalism in a way eclipsing other marines carving up a dead body after the battle. Blood Angels feast during battle. I'd also prefer if this was always the case. I think the red thirst should be why they got their name. The black rage of course makes sense as a degeneration over time linked to their "progression" towards primacy/primarch hood. Again they would never be a Primarch but Marines age into line with their Lord, and that's where the black rage comes in. I do think the psychic scream is a bit wonky, although they might think that is the cause I'd prefer it to be a berserk madness that consumed Sanguinius in battle which a marine simply can't control. I don't know if I like the Khornate involvement.

DapperAnarchist
20-07-2011, 15:43
Cannibal marines is a great idea. Could the Red Thirst be less a love of blood, and more a feasting on souls and experience? Marines can absorb memories through eating the brain, traditionally, could the Red Thirst be something similar? It makes them horrific from the outside, a blending together of Frankenstein's Monster, zombies and Vampires, in the armour of a tank and the decoration of the Sistine Chapel, but oddly better from the inside - they just love people so much, and all their victims live on inside them in a way.

Col. Tartleton
20-07-2011, 16:17
Idk I kind of like the idea of the Blood Angels totally unhinging in combat. The World Eaters were psychotic because of the Butcher's Nails, but the Blood Angels were always broken. Sanguinius was a latent psyker and he could calm the Marines he was with, unless he went into the Black Rage and started ripping things apart like he did on Signus Prime and again on Terra at the Eternity Gate and again against Horus.

Angron drove his warriors into butchers, Sanguinius calmed his berserks into soldiers. But it was never a science and while they've learned ways to cope in the last 10,000 years the madness never quite goes away. I'd compare the Red Thirst to a violent alcoholic trying to quit who still works as a beer taster. If they never went into battle they'd have nothing to worry about, but it's there job to kill people and sooner or later they're going to snap permanently and drink themselves to death in a suicidal action called the Death Company.

I feel the Death Company is part of the progression for most Blood Angels. The facilities on Baal are the best in the Imperium for making marines and their apothecaries can do the process in a year rather than the four to eight years most chapters require. However their gene seed is really broken. In fact many of the aspirants will succumb to the rage during their creation and be terminated (building on the old background about waking up in the sarcophagi.) They don't want to admit it, but the average marine is going to have a much higher chance of entering the death company than dying without it. It's just a matter of time. Generally if they make it to Veterans they will die without succumbing, but even that is no guarantee as officers have fallen regularly to the rage. Dante's longevity would be a miraculous occurrence making him a living saint in the eyes of his men. In short the Tower of Amareo is never empty.

DapperAnarchist
20-07-2011, 18:55
Yeah, I can definitely see it - a good distinction between the two Red Angels. They are very much mirror images on the battlefield, consummate hand to hand warriors, never leading from behind, unlike even Horus or the Lion - if Sanguinius or Angron aren't on the battlefield, they aren't in the warzone. I may use my own idea somewhere else though - perhaps for a Renegade Chapter...

Magos Errant
20-07-2011, 21:05
I really like your fluff and ideas, Col., sir! It's helped inspire some chaos marine fluff that I might post up if I can get past writer's block.

Son of Sanguinius
20-07-2011, 21:07
Are you saying that the Death Company is a natural progression for Blood Angels? Like a type of veteran status? I like the idea.

DapperAnarchist
20-07-2011, 23:08
Its closer to what Dementia is for us - an almost inevitable thing, that you only escape 1) by exceptional luck or 2) by dying first. However, Dementia is just tragic, while the Black Rage is tragic and incredibly dangerous and kind of awesome...

Magos Errant
21-07-2011, 00:16
Sanguinius was a latent psyker....
Does that mean that Mephiston is one step closer to becoming like Sanguinius if, with age, the Marines become closer to their Primarch's abilities?

Col. Tartleton
21-07-2011, 00:21
Are you saying that the Death Company is a natural progression for Blood Angels? Like a type of veteran status? I like the idea.

Sort of like Veterans... Basically given enough time most likely they're going to become beserkers unable to tell friend from foe. It would be tied to maturation. Some die without the black rage. Some manage to do so for a long time. There would be warning signs before it came totally like blacking out during combat or nightmares in their sleep. It would be like that classic lovecraftian dream where there is a man in shadow down the road walking towards you and every night he comes a few steps closer before you wake up. Eventually it will catch up with you. It's an inevitable thing. All marines expect to die. But for the Blood Angels there is bit more recklessness. That's why they're obsessed with speed, they want to kill as many enemies as they can before they lose themselves to madness.

Mephiston thanks to his iron will conquered it totally and has come out the other side more like his Lord Sanguinius than anyone else alive. Lemartes lives with it thanks to his training as a Chaplain he can stay in control of the hallucinations enough to keep himself together in battle. Dante has managed to avoid it for over a thousand years. Moriar and Tycho fell rather nobly to it but Moriar is a monster because of it, a withered still living corpse driven mad by hallucinations and an uncontrollable hunger.

Personally I like the idea of the Blood Angels spending their time in stasis between campaigns. That is the "secret" of their longevity. Dante is much younger than he otherwise is because of the stasis fields. It reduces the likelihood of their falling to the black rage somewhat, ups their vampyre status, and allows them to stay at peak readiness. They're almost always fighting when they're awake.

Mephiston will never be a Primarch, but as they've done with his stats he's no longer just a marine. His act was unprecedented however. Some forgo the Rage for a long time, others may never get it, a few have learned to control it like Lemartes, but no one has ever ridden it out and taken back control (he's actually beaten it twice if you count the Swallow books as canonical which I don't...) Mephiston is a super astartes because his will is indomitable. He can now basically pour his psychic energies through his body which is why he's so powerful. He's seething with warp energy and totally in control. So its similar to Sanguinius who fell into the rage multiple times and came out the other side calm and collected. Sure Horus killed him eventually, but still. He's a scary hombre.

Son of Sanguinius
21-07-2011, 00:26
Interesting. There are a few fun ways to go with that.
- You could really go off the vampire-lined deep end and make their consumption of blood and/or flesh a requirement to stave off the transformation into Death Company.
- You could make all high ranking officers into individuals who staved off the worst of the Black Rage, thought that might require changing Mephiston a bit.

I do like the idea of hiberation or stasis too.

Magos Errant
21-07-2011, 00:36
Thanks for the response. :)

I really like it when people like yourself, Col., take the fluff and run with it. Please, keep sharing.

DapperAnarchist
21-07-2011, 01:04
The Stasis Sarcophagi is a great idea...

.... I just noticed that the word Sarcophagus has the greek word for "eat" in it... the meaning? FLESH EATER. Holy stickballs. You have to do something with that... This may be old news to everyone else, but there you go...

Col. Tartleton
26-07-2011, 17:26
+ + Curiosities of the Blood Angels Chapter + +

The Sanguis Vitae (Blood of Life) is central to the TILLING process employed by the Blood Angels Chapter. The Blood of Sanguinius is infused in vast quantities over the course of a year. The “Blood” of Sanguinius combines the TILLING and “planting” phases of the transformation in a concentrated form. Every aspirant is placed into a Sarcophagus in suspended animation. Over the course of one Baal year the aspirants are completely submerged in the “Blood” and their blood is entirely replaced with it. The Blood functions as actual blood but also serves to introduce gene alterations and leads to the rapid growth of the bones and muscles as well as the developement of the other organs. At the end of the year the once cancerous and irradiated aspirants emerge, their accursed flesh devoured by the Sarcophagi, reborn like the heroes of ancient myths, clear grey eyes and curly blond hair surmount their statuesque builds.

Many however, suffer complications during their creation. It is the duty of the High Chaplain to dispatch these miserable wretches with the ancient relic “Securis Carnificis,” the Executioner’s Axe. The High Chaplain’s duty is to oversee the creation, preservation, and if needed destruction of the men under his stern watch. From the rites of initiation, to the annointment of the Black Armor, the ceremonial flayed armor of the High Chaplain is a constant reminder of the nearness of death. The Blood Angels are despite their noblility and beauty impaired by genetic flaws. In battle they are consumed by a psychotic hunger for flesh and a thirst for blood called the Red Thirst. They also face an eventual consignment to the Death Company. The Black Rage, a schizophrenic condition where the marine is plagued with delusions, a cacophony of voices both angelic and demonic, nightmares, and excruciating seizures is an unavoidable fate for most.

It is a gradual process, and at it’s onset the Marines are annointed as The Lost by the High Chaplain, a post currently held by Lord Astorath the Grim. His predecessor currently serves as the commander of the Death Company, the Guardian of the Lost, Lemartes. Even Lemartes fell to the Black Rage but thanks to his centuries commanding The Lost his understanding of the condition has allowed him to withstand the worst ravages of his sanity. Although he is no longer fit to serve as High Chaplain his steely resolve has kept him as the de facto leader of the Chaplaincy and his presence on the field of battle is that of a larger than life hero.

The Black Rage can be avoided and overcome however. Cervan Dante, The Lord Baal has managed to survive over thirteen centuries without succumbing to the disease. He has however spent much of that time either in stasis or in transit through the warp, which has greatly extended his lifespan beyond a physical toll of only a few hundred years. In that time however he has waged hundreds of campaigns and fought thousands of sorties and shown himself to be among the most skilled strategists in the Imperium. The use of stasis sarcophagi is not commonly known by other chapters and remains a secret of the old legion. While in use by most chapters to a limited extent for the deceased and near dead during campaigns the idea of a chapter spending its time brooding in sarcophagi rather than training would be a rather large embarassment. Especially coupled with the reasoning behind it.

The Librarian Calistarius was one of many who fell to the Black Rage on Armageddon. However trapped beneath a collapsed Hive Cathedral (a structure over a mile high) the bold Librarian battled his demons for seven days and seven nights. On the eighth day he emerged from the ruins as if reborn, his steely will supressed the madness. He later relapsed due to the influence of Chaotic Influences but he regained control within hours. It is likely that any future relapses will pass even quicker, his will to power is enormous. Calistarius earned the title the Mephiston (The Destroyer of Death) for defying death and madness. He is an example to them all that the illness can be defeated through discipline. He has labored with the High Chaplain to attempt to rehabilitate The Lost without success, however the Brother Sergeant of Second Squad the Fifth Company, Rafen has since joined Mephiston in defeating the Black Rage.

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Just thought I'd wrap up my thoughts on the subject. Odds are this is going to be sort of a scatterbrained eclectic series but hopefully I end up covering everything eventually. I think I'm going to do a heraldry guide next but I might continue the geneseed stuff.

drmarco
27-07-2011, 08:11
Mephiston will never be a Primarch, but as they've done with his stats he's no longer just a marine. His act was unprecedented however. Some forgo the Rage for a long time, others may never get it, a few have learned to control it like Lemartes, but no one has ever ridden it out and taken back control (he's actually beaten it twice if you count the Swallow books as canonical which I don't...) Mephiston is a super astartes because his will is indomitable. He can now basically pour his psychic energies through his body which is why he's so powerful. He's seething with warp energy and totally in control. So its similar to Sanguinius who fell into the rage multiple times and came out the other side calm and collected. Sure Horus killed him eventually, but still. He's a scary hombre.


Um...Really?

So he's a librarian Blood Angel who managed to find a way out of their 'unsolvable' curse? Trapped and writhing in torment this Psyker managed to somehow overcome the curse spontaneously, and since then is 'seething with warp energy', insanely powerful in combat and ability wise...Bargain (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Faust)!

Hmmmmm. I wonder how he managed all that...

On an unrelated note, who was Mephisto (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Mephistopheles)pheles again?


Cheers,

Marco

Col. Tartleton
27-07-2011, 14:42
Mephistopheles is roughly the Destroyer of Liars in Hebrew which is why I have Mephiston translate as the Destroyer of Death.

Yes he's named after a Demon but there's no evidence he made a pact or something other than his stat line. I liked the idea but I prefer the idea he's just channeling warp energy into himself similar to how the Primarchs did. I mean Dorn could backhand a marine across a room. I'd say he's gaining on Sanguinius but he's not quite there yet.