|This article, Aelius Direblade, was written by TireKhorne. Please do not edit or 'acquire' this fiction without the writer's permission.|
Aelius Direblade is a Veteran of the Deathwatch, seconded from his original chapter the Hammer Guard soon after becoming one of their Paladin-Ballistarius. With his accuracy with a bolter and his vast knowledge of the xenos, he has provided valuable knowledge and skills to the Deathwatch, and has been a part of multiple Kill-Teams.
Raised within the forests of Devax Victrii, Aelius was the son of a Hunter-Mount, one of the mounted warriors among the kingdoms of Victrii. Raised from birth in the ways of a knight, Aelius was taught to kill and fight, and had already killed a man in honorable combat by the time the Hammer Guard ships appeared in the sky. Seeking recruits, the Hammer Guard descended from their vessel to Aelius' village, and inspected each child. Even among his older peers, Aelius was chosen, along with three others, and was taken to his new life.
With the other Aspirants, Aelius was left on the planet Karline as part of the Hammer Guard's Trial of Faith. Forced into a hostile environment and with the only safety brought by the few hours of daylight, Aelius and the other aspirants had to survive for a quarter of a Terran year. Along with Azrael Cybus, his newfound friend and fellow aspirant, Aelius endured through the trial when many failed, and developed an intense hatred for the xenos life forms that stalked the nights of Karline.
Surviving the trials and beginning the Gene-Seed implantation process, Aelius endured. As a velite, training while his gene-seed implants continued, Aelius discovered the numerous species of xenos that plagued the Imperium. On the world of Jelgove, Aelius was wounded by an Ork, getting firsthand exposure to the disgusting appearance of the beast. His hatred of the xenos grew with every battle, and as he served his time as an Evocatus, Alaris, and Legionnaire, Aelius discovered more and more about their weaknesses and strengths, and how to kill them.
Eventually joining the ranks of the Paladin-Ballistarius after being responsible for bringing down a Tyranid Carnifex and turning the tide of the battle, saving not only the bastion the 3rd Company had been defending but his friend and newly-promoted Legate Azrael Cybus as well, Aelius was gifted with new weapons and wargear honing his accuracy with a bolter to a deadly point. It was his time as a Paladin-Ballistarius that saw his hatred of the Xenos spark his quest to rid the galaxy of the alien plague, when he served in the Drendix Crusade.
The Drendix Crusade saw the start of the brotherhood between the Novus Krakens and Hammer Guard, and was when Aelius first met Demetios Inviktus, who became his close friend, if a Hammer Guard ever had one. But it was also a difficult and grinding campaign, and Aelius lost many brothers during the fight. He personally witnessed the fall of Legate Steelblade, and held off the Ork tides so that the noble leader's body could be taken back and removed of it's gene-seed. After the crusade, Aelius actively studied the xenos threats, using his time in the field to train himself on their weaknesses and strengths, and his xenos-slaying abilities soon attracted the higher command of the Chapter, and he was selected to join the Deathwatch.
Knowing he may never see his chapter again, Aelius adjusted to his new home and life, aboard the Watch Fortress known as Fort Surgegate. using his valuable strengths and knowledge to aid his Kill-Teams in the field. Off the field, however, he rarely communicated with his fellow veterans, his chapter's shameful past making him feel as though he was unworthy to be a part of such a noble group, and so preferring to train and improve his knowledge of his prey alone. Many soon isolated him because of this, only communicating when in the field.
A few did break through this isolation, however. Watch Sergeant Helgash, a veteran sergeant from the White Scars, forged a bond of brotherhood with Aelius, ignoring the reputation of Aelius' home chapter as the White Scars ignore their own reputation. The two became close allies, often referring to each other as "Brother-Guard" or "Brother-Scar" as a sign of respect. It wasn't long before they were joined by Demetios Invicktus and, with the Kraken and the Guard reunited once more, the trio became permanent brothers-in-arms. The trio trained and fought together, combining their strengths into a finely-tuned blade to pierce the heart of the alien threat.
Raised in the ways of the Hammer Guard, Aelius is a stoic and duty-bound individual, seeking redemption for the chapter as he fights alongside the forces of the Deathwatch. As such, he is an emotionless and humorless individual when in the field, taking any assignment given without question, and refusing to break from his task until it is completed, doing so by any means necessary. Aelius also practices his chapter's faith, worshiping stars as the beacons on the road to redemption and his next assignment. He even possesses a sense of navigation and the ability to almost perfectly guess the location of his next assignment, based upon the brightest star in the night sky.
Aelius is also a dedicated hunter of the xenos, possessing a near-obsession of his prey outside of combat, studying every strength and weakness of his foe so that he may purge the plague of the xenos on the Imperium easier. Combined with his chapter's shame, Aelius has become a very isolated individual, preferring to focus on his eternal hunt over social interaction, barring his close brothers Demetios and Helgash. All of this has created a quiet and stone-faced warrior who's eternal hunt provides him with the tools to become an unstoppable hunter of the xenos, and a loyal servant of the Imperium and the Deathwatch.
- Bolter - Hand-crafted for the Deathwatch, the bolters given to Deathwatch veterans are very best of their kind, thrice-blessed during their creation and their machine spirits attuned to match their user's personality, and even modified to allow the user to select his ammunition type at will.
- Orkbane - Gifted to Aelius by Legate Cybus during Aelius' departure ceremony, Orkbane is a power maul that belonged to Julianus Kassius, another aspirant that took part in the Trial of Faith with Aelius and Azrael, who rose to the rank of Paladin-Decurion Decanus before falling in combat against the vile greenskin. His power maul's machine spirit is rumored to seek the blood of the Ork, in revenge for the death of it's former master.
- Power Armor - Tendered to perfection by the Techmarines of the Deathwatch, Aelius' wears a suit of Mark VIII Errant Pattern power armor, styled in the livery of the Deathwatch and bearing the symbol of the Inquisition upon the specially-crafted left shoulder. On his right shoulder he proudly bears the heraldry of the Hammer Guard, who he still serves even within his new home of the Deathwatch.
- Special Issue Ammunition - Each member of the Deathwatch is gifted special artificer-crafted bolt shells designed with a special purpose. From the corrosive Hellfire rounds to the armor-piercing Kraken bolts, these specialized rounds give Deathwatch veterans the flexibility to take on any foe.