|This article, Falcon's Claws, was written by Algrim Whitefang. Please do not edit or 'acquire' this fiction without the writer's permission.|
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- "Confounding the foe is one sure way to victory. When this strategy is pursued, war becomes a game of opposites and expectations."
- — Jaghatai Khan, Khagan of the V Legiones Astartes, Tenets of War
The Falcon's Claws are an ancient and ferocious 3rd Founding Successor Chapter created from the lineage of the proud and savage lineage of the White Scars. Created in the wake of the Great Scouring, the Chapter took their namesake from the V Legion's ancient auxiliary order known as The Burgediin Sarhvu or 'Falcon's Claws', a small Order composed of veteran warriors that excelled as hunters and forward scouts on the battlefield, well known for their expertise in survival and the quiet elimination of enemy commanders. When this Chapter was formed at the dawn of the 32nd Millennium, they carried on the traditions of their order, continuing to stalk the battlefields across various warzones, delivering swift and brutal death to those that would dare oppose Mankind's manifest destiny as the rightful inheritors of the galaxy.
- 1 Chapter History
- 2 Notable Campaigns
- 3 Chapter Homeworld
- 4 Chapter Organisation
- 5 Falcon's Claws Librarians
- 6 Chapter Trappings & Equipment
- 7 Chapter Culture
- 8 Chapter Beliefs
- 9 Combat Doctrine
- 10 Chapter Gene-Seed
- 11 Chapter Recruitment
- 12 Deathwatch Service
- 13 Notable Members
- 14 Chapter Fleet
- 15 Chapter Relics
- 16 Chapter Appearance
- 17 Relations
- 18 Notable Quotes
- 19 Trivia
- 20 Gallery
- "Oderint dum metuant!"
- — Formal motto of the 731st Pioneer Company, the 'Grey Ghosts'. Translated to High-Gothic: "Let them hate, as long as they fear!"
The Falcon's Claws are an ancient and proud Chapter whose origins can be traced back to the chaotic centuries following the lamentable galaxy-spanning conflict - the Horus Heresy. Originally, they were a part of the V Legion's 731st Pioneer Company, known informally as the 'Grey Ghosts'. This formation was one of several so-called 'Pioneer Companies'. In its earliest incarnation, the V Legion was not the singular body that many of the other proto-Legions formed. It was a Legion in name only. Instead, it was organised into autonomous companies, each of which had few links to any of their brethren and operated entirely independently. Indeed, prior to the recall that was sent after the discovery of their Primarch Jaghatai Khan, many of the Pioneer Companies had no contact with any other body of the V Legion and developed a set of traditions and rituals unique to that company. This was especially true as the Great Crusade progressed, with each company often forced to pursue recruitment as they travelled because supply and reinforcement convoys were rarely able to keep up with their rate of advance. Oddly, this brought several of the Pioneer Companies closer to the other Legions, especially where they fought in close proximity, as the V Legion warriors, still lacking a Primarch to rally around, began to adopt elements of the other Legion's practices.
The Terran legionaries of this particular Pioneer Company primarily saw service as outriders and forward scout elements for the 98th Expeditionary Fleet, alongside the dour warriors of the Imperial Fists Legion. Their primary mission was to identify potential targets ahead of the Expeditionary fleet's main advance and assessing the threat of each, either withdrawing in the face of overwhelming opposition or staging a campaign of disruption and subtle murder when they discovered weakness. They served to arrange the grand battles and campaigns which the Imperial Fists prosecuted, moving on when the warriors of Dorn arrived in orbit to secure the victory with pomp and fanfare.
Later, once the Grey Ghosts were fully initiated into the reborn White Scars Legion, many of these consummate hunter-killers and scouts were inducted into the Burgediin Sarhvu, the 'Falcon's Claws'. This small auxiliary order was one of several ad hoc formations that existed outside of the Brotherhood structure into which the vast majority of the White Scars were organised. The Falcon's Claws were composed of veteran warriors who had undergone certain initiatory rites on the White Scars' homeworld of Chogoris. On the battlefield, these warriors fought as one of the so-called 'Stalker' cadres for which the Grey Ghosts were renowned. Armed with old-pattern anti-materiel rifles converted for use as sniper weapons and a sophisticated catalogue of camouflage techniques, these Stalkers marked priority targets for the primary invasion force that followed on their heels and perpetrated pinpoint strikes on those deemed vulnerable by their commanders.
The skills of these supremely skilled infiltrators and hunters would be put to good use throughout the dark days of the Horus Heresy. The Falcon's Claws were instrumental in creating conditions of all-consuming chaos amongst the invading Traitor Legions, sowing destruction and mayhem behind enemy lines, raiding important lines of supply and outposts and assassinating high-ranking commanders, slowing the Traitors' inexorable advance upon the Imperial Throneworld. These deadly warriors played a small, but vital role in bringing about a tipping point during this apocalyptic struggle. Following the death of the Warmaster at the hands of the Emperor and the flight of the Traitor Legions from Terra, the Burgediin Sarhvu were unleashed upon the remaining dregs of the Warmaster's failed rebellion as they fled the Throneworld. Indeed, even in long years of strife that followed the Age of Darkness of the Heresy, they remained active, hunting Traitors long after the official end of the Scouring.
- Terran Unification Wars (ca. M29-M30) - The earliest incarnation of the Falcon's Claws was as the 731st Pioneer Company, one of several autonomous companies created as a part of the V Legion of the proto-Legiones Astartes. They took part in the Unification Wars that still raged across the surface of Mankind's birthworld, to conquer the techno-barbarian nations that dominated the planet and forge the foundation of the burgeoning Imperium of Man.
- Great Crusade (ca. 798.M30-005.M31) - As the V Legion was not a singular body that many of the other proto-Legions formed, the Pioneer Companies operated autonomously from the main body of the V Legion, developing their own set of traditions and rituals unique to each company. This 731st Pioneer Company saw service with the 98th Expeditionary Fleet of the Imperial Fists Legion, acting as outriders and forward scout elements. Solidifying their tactics and modus operandi, they earned the informal moniker, the 'Grey Ghosts'. Following the discovery of the V Legion's missing Primarch Jaghatai Khan in 878.M30, the Pioneer Companies were recalled to the Primarch's homeworld of Chogoris. The Khagan, or "Khan of Khans", was quick to impose his style of war he had perfected on the steppes of his homeworld and reorganised the V Legion in accordance to his will. Following their full initiation into the reborn White Scars Legion, the 731st Pioneer Company were assigned to the Ordu of Ambaghai Noyan-Khan. For the remainder of the Great Crusade, this ordu operated independently of the main body of the V Legion, ranging far ahead of the bulk of the Imperial Expeditionary Fleets, pushing the boundaries of the expanding Imperium of Man to the farthest reaches of the northeastern region of the galaxy, near the mysterious region known as the Ghoul Stars.
- Horus Heresy (ca. 005-014.M31) - Following the corruption of the Emperor's most favoured son, the Warmaster Horus Lupercal, half the Legiones Astartes declared their allegiance to the Arch-Traitor and unleashed a cataclysmic attempt to conquer the galaxy. Receiving news of the Calth Atrocity and monitoring the ever-worsening tides of the Immaterium due to formation of the massive warp tempest, known as the Ruinstorm, the ordu of Ambaghai was effectively cut off from the rest of the White Scars Legion. Refusing to accept their fate, the Noyan-Khan led his ordu in a shadow war against the Traitor Legions in an effort to slow their advance upon Terra. After eight years of fighting, Ambaghai decided to brave the deadly tides of the warp in a desperate effort to reunite with their erstwhile legion. Unfortunately, they arrived too late to take part in the final epic battle of the Heresy, for the Siege of Terra was already over by the time they managed to arrive at the Imperial Throneworld. Enraged by their inability to fight alongside their brothers in the most epic of battles, Ambaghai and his ordu launched a personal crusade of vengeance against the hated Traitor Legions. Their personal vendetta became a part of the much larger war of reciprocity that came to be known as the Great Scouring.
- The Great Scouring (014-021.M31) - Following the bitter fighting of the Horus Heresy, the Traitor Legions splintered and dispersed, fleeing for the farthest reaches of the galaxy. The Imperium was left a shattered, dismal thing. The Master of Mankind was left a broken hust, and His dream of unit erased forever. Yet for all this, the Imperium retained enough might to exact bloody vengeance upon their foes. Thus, began the bloody age of the Great Scouring - a period of monumental violence, confusion and darkness. Many of the Loyalist Space Marine Legions were intent on exacting their pound of flesh from those who wronged them. There could be no forgiveness for the Traitors or those who colluded with them. The ordu of Ambaghai were intent on rooting out corruption and exposing wrong-doers to the cold light of their deadly blades. The heads of many Planetary Governors and Traitor Legion commanders were taken as trophies. Their thirst for vengeance refused to be slaked, even after the Traitors were driven into the hellish realm of the Eye of Terror.
- Third Founding (001.M32) - As a new millennium dawned, the High Lords of Terra decreed a new Founding of the Adeptus Astartes. The Great Khan personally recognised Ambaghai Noyan-Khan for his loyalty and long, dedicated service, granting him the singular honour of becoming a Chapter Master of a newly founded Successor Chapter. Taking the livery of the Burgediin Sarvhu, he named his Chapter the 'Falcon's Claws', and immediately declared an eternal Crusade to bring the light of the Emperor to the darkest corners of the galaxy.
Like their genetic forebears, the Falcon's Claws utilise a unique organisation inherited from the social organisation of the nomadic people of the steppes of their Progenitors' homeworld of Chogoris. They do so, in honour of their Khagan's legacy and due to the perceived limitations and favoured organisational structure and tactics espoused in the Codex Astartes. Though the Chapter nominally adheres to the teachings of the Codex, they have always maintained the long-ingrained traditions of their own cultural heritage alongside them. Accordingly, the Chapter has a nominal strength of one-thousand battle-brothers under arms, further divided into ten companies of roughly one hundred Space Marines each, but instead of utilising the standard organisational structure of the Codex, they utilise their own cultural naming conventions for the various rank designations and formations within the Chapter:
- Mingghan - Translated as "thousand(s)", this term is often utilised by the Falcon's Claws to describe a Chapter formation, which notionally consists of 1,000 battle-brothers.
- Zuun - Translated as "hundred(s)", this term is often utilised by the Chapter when referring to a Brotherhood (a Company-size formation), which consists of 100 battle-brothers.
- Arban - Translated as "ten(s)", this term is often utilised by the Chapter when referring to a squad size formation, which consists of 5-10 battle-brothers.
Like their Progenitors the Falcon's Claws also refer to their companies in Khorchin, the native tongue of Chogoria. In this case, their companies are called Zuun, which literally translates as "hundred(s)", the number of battle-brothers assigned to a company-size formation. Each Brotherhood is an independent organisation unto itself, with its own secret customs, rituals and traditions, often operating independently of the main body of the Chapter for years at a time. They are all but autonomous in their own right in the field: fluid, sure-footed and largely exempt from the reliance on direct commands from above, unless recalled by the Noyan-Khan back to the Chapter fleet to face the most dire of threats. Each Zuun possesses their own armoury, vehicles and, more rarely, even Dreadnoughts. They operate with a unique number of various squad specialties, organised in accordance to the whims of their ruling Khan (Captain equivalent). In this way, these Brotherhoods maintain the ancient traditions of their parent Chapter and are able to deal with a myriad of challenges on their own if need be, and above all are able to seek out and destroy the enemies of Mankind on their own terms. Down the long millennia, each Brotherhood has earned their own unique moniker, which harkens back to the V Legion of old during the Great Crusade era:
- Noyan-Khan - Taken from the bygone rank of the ancient V Legion of old, these senior commanders of ancient times commanded the White Scars separate Ordus, divisional-size formation comprised of up to 20 Brotherhoods. They are charged with leading the Mingghan (Chapter equivalent) of 1,000 nokud (Battle-Brothers).
- Khan - A Captain equivalent, which the Chapter sometimes formally refers to as a Zuun-u Darga, charged with overseeing a Brotherhood (Zuun) of 100 nokud.
- Jagutu-iin Darga - A Lieutenant equivalent.
- Tenger Etseg - Tenger Etseg or "Heavenly-Father" are a Chief Librarian/Reclusiarch equivalent.
- Etseg - Etseg or "Holy Father" are a Chaplain equivalent.
- Zadyin Vokyer - The Zadyin Vokyer, translated to High Gothic as "Storm Walker", are the Chapter's specialist cadre of elite battle-psykers, equivalent to the standard Librarian of other, more Codex-oriented Chapter. They perform the same functions as a typical Librarian, responsible for maintaining the great deeds of the Chapter and keepers of the Chapter's vaults of ancient lore. The Zadyin Vokyer maintain their forebear's shamanistic beliefs in both the elements and animistic teachings of ancient Chogoris. Unique amongst the Scions of the Warhawk, the Storm Walkers of the Falcon's Claws also perform the dual role of Chaplains, guiding their brethren on matters of the spirit. They are also responsible for maintaining precise records of each battle-brother's deeds deemed worthy of remembrance in the great chronicles of the Chapter's chronicles, so that lessons of both victories and defeats are recorded for posterity for future generations of warriors of the Chapter.
- Jigari - Jigari or "Lord-Protector" is the equivalent to a standard Chief Apothecary.
- Emchi - Emchi or "Healers" are the equivalent of the standard Space Marine Apothecary.
- Mastyer Urlachin - Mastyer Urlachin or "Master Craftsman" is the equivalent of a Master of the Forge, the Chapter's senior-most Techmarine.
- Urlachin - Urlachin or "Craftsmen" are the equivalent of the standard Techmarine.
- Arban-u Darga - A Sergeant equivalent, they are charged with leading an Arbatu, a unit of 10 nokud.
- Nokud - Translated to "Warrior", a Battle-Brother equivalent.
- Ebon Keshig - The elite cadre of veteran warriors who make up the most skilled and ferocious warriors within the Chapter who make use of Tactical Dreadnought Armours in the field, a rare occurrence within a Chapter dedicated to speed and finesse over brute force. The majority of the Falcon's Claws Terminator armour suits are assigned to the vaults of their Chapter flagship, the Stygian Blade, waiting until the Chapter has need of their stolid might and then temporarily assigned to a veteran marine for one glorious battle before returning to the storage vaults. Many of these ebon-painted armour suits have accrued a long and glorious history of last stands and forlorn assaults into the teeth of the enemy's guns. The select few warriors chosen to serve in the ranks of the Ebon Keshig often serve as the personal Honour Guard to the Noyan-Khan and his subordinate commanders when on campaign prosecuting the Emperor's wars.
- The Kharash - Less a formal Order and more a temporary assembly, the 'Kharash' is an ancient Chogorian tradition carried on by the Falcon's Claws, assembled whenever the need for a diversionary or shock assault force arises. Formed only of volunteers, these units are both a punishment and an honour, as those few who survive assignment to the Kharash are often considered to be both lucky and skilled by their comrades. The Kharash are also one of the few Chapter units to make routine use of Tactical Dreadnought Armour.
- Sagyar Mazan - Another Chogorian tradition observed by the Chapter is that of the 'Sagyar Mazan'. Those few battle-brothers that have committed a treacherous act or committed a catastrophic failure are relegated to this specialist formation of exiled penitents. But more commonly, the ranks of these doomed warriors are often filled by those who have descended too far into the throes of savagery, or whose bloody deeds have mutilated their souls and damaged their minds to such an extent, that they are no longer considered the epitome of what it means to be an Astartes, for their souls have become hollow and they have become murderous beyond reason. When this occurs, the Chapter's Storm Walkers ensure that these affected warriors are cast upon their enemies with the proper application. These warriors are given over to the ranks of the Sagyar Mazan, painting their armour entirely black and covering their battle-plate in Chogorian death chants. They also mark themselves by painting their faces in death's head iconography, denoting that they seek a glorious death in battle, and in doing so, washing away any stain of honour and earning the Khagan's forgiveness.
Order of Battle
The Falcon's Claws do not make use of the standard Codex-approved designations for ordered companies, and instead differentiate their companies as 'Zuun', known informally as a "Brotherhood", such as the "Brotherhood of the Black Falcon" or "Brotherhood of the Crimson Moon". Though the Falcon's Claws maintain a different order of battle than most Codex-compliant Chapters, due to their preferred style of warfare which deemphasises the use of heavy armour in favour of light, fast moving mechanised and airborne infantry formations. The following represents the order of battle of the Falcon's Claws as it stood at the dawning of M42:
Lord of the Falcon's Claws
|Armoury||Apothecarion||Storm Walkers Council
|Veteran Company||Battle Companies|
"Brotherhood of the Untamed Stallion"
"Eagle Eyes Brotherhood"
"Brotherhood of the Black Falcon"
"Wolf Maw Brotherhood"
"Brotherhood of the Ebon Knives"
"Brotherhood of the Crescent Moon"
"Brotherhood of the Bloody Axe"
"Lightning Spears Brotherhood"
Falcon's Claws Librarians
Like their genetic forebears and other fellow White Scars Successors, the Falcon's Claws also maintain a Librarium of potent psykers who are highly talented and trained to master the power of the Warp at the highest levels, though they refer to these warriors as Zadyin Vokyer or "Storm Walkers" in accordance to ancient Chogorian shamanistic tradition. Each Chapter selects its Librarians in its own way, either from seed worlds or the Chapter homeworld, as it does with the bulk of its Initiates, or from the ranks of gifted psykers brought to the Chapter by the Scholastica Psykana. Most Chapters train and test chosen psykers following the ancient ways laid out in the Codex Astartes. Librarians of the Falcon's Claws are chosen from those Initiates who display an aptitude for learning the Arts of Heaven. Falcon's Claws Storm Walkers have a number of unique psychic abilities only used by the psykers of their Chapter:
- Heart of Fury - The Storm Walker is able to reach deep into the legacy of the Khagan, and bring forth the legendary swiftness and ferocity of their Primarch himself and transfer it to his fellow Nokud in the heat of battle, granting them renewed vigour and enhancing their inherent rage.
- Howling Wrath - The Storm Walker can gather the powerful winds from the steppes of their ancestral homeworld of Chogoris, driving them forwards to cast aside the enemy.
- Spirit of the Steppes - The Storm Walker calls upon the spirits of the land, air and the souls of long-dead warriors to bring some fragment of the climate of harsh steppes of Chogoris to the battlefield he walks upon, forcing the foe to contend with more difficult environmental conditions. It is said that so long as these forces of nature fight alongside them, the Falcon's Claws will always emerge victorious.
- The Khagan's Fury - The Storm Walker can call upon the lightning that embodies the spirit of the Khagan, and bring it to bear against his enemies. When he summons this ability he hurls his bolt of lightning in a straight line out to its maximum range, striking everything in its path.
Chapter Trappings & Equipment
- Chieftain Trophy Rack - Like the great khans of old, the Falcon's Claws have taken to wearing trophy racks to display their triumphs and prowess in battle. Like the more common back banners used by Astartes commanders, a trophy rack identifies a Battle-Brother as an accomplished warrior or a captain of the Chapter. It also inspires fear in those the Battle-Brother has already bested, by displaying the heads and other trophies of his victories over them. Usually this takes the form of a single type of enemy, such as a specific race (i.e. Orks), organisation or foe (i.e. the chamberlain of a treacherous planetary governor). When fighting members of this race, organisation or foe, the psychological effect of a Battle-Brother's trophy rack causes extreme fear.
- Duelling Tulwar - Reputed to have its origins from the mountain tribes of Chogoris, the Duelling Tulwar is a ritual weapon utilised by the White Scars and their Successor Chapters. Its short, curved blade and balance of these weapons allows them to be wielded deftly, allowing the wielder greater speed in combat, switching between defensive and offensive stances at lightning speed with a flick of their wrist. Ritual duels between comrades are common between Chogorian tribesmen, and while the feuds that inspire many such duels are rare amongst the Falcon's Claws, the practice of duelling to resolve personal disputes, to hone skills, or even simply for the love of a challenge, remains strong. Many Falcon's Claws carry these special curved blades, patterned upon the Tulwars used by the Chogorian people, created for duelling and battle alike, carrying them in anticipation of the inevitable close combat that many battles culminate in. These deadly blades are carried in addition to, or in lieu of, a standard-issue combat knife, depending on the individual's preferences.
- Guan Dao (Power Lance) - A signature weapon of those Chapters descended from the lineage of the great Khagan, the Guan Dao is a Chogorian glaive, a Power Lance. Considered blessed weapons, a Guan Dao possess a two-metre long metal shaft with a single-edged, curved blade which is primarily used by Falcon's Claws Astartes to extend their reach or to increase angular momentum, and thus striking power, when the weapon is swung. This makes the Guan Dao ideal for charging from the back of vehicles or striking at foes while beyond the reach of their weapons. When used in close combat on foot, its purpose is more to disarm an opponent and to deflect their strikes.
- Honour Gift - The ancient traditions of fealty and honour amongst the people of Chogoris are many and complex, woven as they are between many tribes once unified under the Great Khan. Amongst these many traditions is that of honour gifts, where the spoils of a glorious hunt or battle are given to a trusted comrade to make stronger the ties that unite them, a ritual that dates back to the Khan's days when tribes fought as one against their oppressors. These gifts take many forms, from pelts taken from the great plains-dwelling beasts of Chogoris, to shards of shattered armour taken from enemy vehicles or combatants, to tusks, fangs and claws from beasts or monstrous xenos foes. Several examples are given below:
- Torandor Pelt - During ritual pilgrimages to the homeworld of their gene-sire, Falcon's Claws Astartes will often take part in a Torandor hunt. The Torandor is a massive, hardy breed of plains-dwelling herbivore, often the target of great hunts that last for days, as individual beasts are singled out and brought down by hundreds of spears and arrows. To triumph in such a hunt is the work of an entire tribe, or a few Astartes, and requires great patience and endurance. Clumped and matted tufts of Torandor hair are divided amongst the triumphant hunters, who gift them to deserving comrades, whose fortitude matches that of these great beasts.
- Fragment of Foes Defeated - As befits warriors of their legendary prowess and accomplishments, many battles the Falcon's Claws fight result in the shattered detritus of enemy forces, the broken pieces of armour and vehicles, littering the battlefield. Proud Falcon's Claws may be inclined to take fragments that signify their kills, gifting them to their brothers that they might remember the glories of that conflict.
- Savage Totem - Monstrous foes like the Orks and Tyranids, and bloodthirsty predators on many worlds, are common enemies for the Falcon's Claws, and just as they may claim scraps of armour from technologically-advanced foes, the talons and fangs of such creatures are common trophies taken from battles and hunts alike, and passed along to comrades who are as ferocious as the beasts they were taken from.
- "At all times, present your enemy with the reverse of the truth. When you are vulnerable, appear strong, when you are strong, appear vulnerable. When close by your enemy, appear far from him, and when far away, appear close by. Weakness may thus be turned into strength."
- — Jaghatai Khan, Khagan of the V Legiones Astartes, Tenets of War
Falcon's Claws warriors are renowned for their skill at lightning assaults, tenacity as hunters and their strong sense of honour and duty. Some have made the error of assuming the savage sons of the wild steppes to be crude in manners or unsophisticated in temperament, but this perception could not be further from the truth (and voicing it would be unwise in any case). Like their Progenitors, Falcon's Claws Battle-Brothers are complex individuals, and the product of a heady cocktail of their environment, tribal tradition and Adeptus Astartes doctrine, training and genetic engineering. Many regard the trappings of civilisation with a measure of suspicion. They would far prefer to commit the wisdom of the ancients to mighty stone tablets than within crystal data-stacks for example. Many of the teachings of the Primarch are set down in this way, the permanence of marble far outweighing the convenience of mass storage.
When confined for long periods in an entirely artificial environment, many Falcon's Claws become short tempered. The older and more experienced, however, have mastered themselves to such a degree that they can enter a restorative trance and meditate for days on end on the wildness of their ancestral homeworld of Chogoris and emerge at peace once more. In character, the Falcon's Claws display a finely balanced mix of wildness and discipline. They are often dour, even severe, and suffer fools with poor grace, yet they are supremely honourable and have a highly developed sense of justice and tradition. Once at ease, a Falcon's Claws Battle-Brother reveals himself to be capable of humour and kindness. They are thorough and considered in planning any deed, and when the time comes to unleash the fires of battle they do so with savage abandon.
- "Know one's self, know one's enemy. If you do not know your nature it cannot be honed, but remains blunt. If you do not know your enemy's nature your attack will likewise be blunted."
- — Jaghatai Khan, Khagan of the V Legiones Astartes, Tenets of War
The Falcon's Claws are fiercely independent and stoic, with a deep well of inventive cunning learned over millennia. They well-understand the cruel dictates of survival, often operating in the furthest reaches of Imperial space, often in the most inhospitable of environments. This Chapter is made up of far more than superb killers, as their heritage as machine-smiths and expert survivors was also carried across to the earliest V Legion cadres and to the Chapter upon its inception, carrying over their skills as expert pathfinders. However, they have also carried over their genetic forebear's wilful and independent nature as well. The Falcon's commanders have been noted as being prone to ignoring any orders save those of the High Lords of Terra, their Noyan-Khan or another commander who has earned their respect, despite the protest it often raises among certain generals and advisors. Despite the ire often caused by their insular nature, few doubt the abilities of this Chapter's warriors.
Flexibility and willingness to adapt to their situation represents the core beliefs of the Falcon's Claws' combat doctrine. Before engaging the enemy, this Chapter is always careful to identify all of their assets and utilise them to the fullest means possible. These often includes assets that are not identified within the constraints of the Codex Astartes. Even when operating well within the strictures of this tome, the warriors of this Chapter might choose to take measures that others might consider dishonourable, for the Falcon's Claws believe that the only important standard is success. Though they consider honour and glory noble notions, only the achievement of a decisive victory, at all costs, is worth far more than any amount of accolades or empty platitudes. Many of their fellow Space Marine Chapters exhibit a clear disdain for the tactics employed by the Falcon's Claws, and would not "sully" themselves by using concealment, espionage, counter-intelligence and secrecy. However, the Falcons employment of such "dishonourable" methods to overcome those who would use such deception against them, has helped them achieve a long tally of momentous victories in the face of great adversity and certain death.
The Falcon's Claws consider their more orthodox cousin Chapters to be blind adherents to tradition. While they would not purposely instigate rivalry, they have come to accept these Codex-oriented Chapters will not change their beliefs and the way they conduct warfare, and will reluctantly participate alongside them when such actions do not interfere with accomplishing their objectives. Blind obedience is strongly discouraged, as Space Marines of the Falcon's Claws have inherited their genetic forbear's propensity for independence and strong, wilful demeanour. Though they are merciless and sometimes cruel on the attack and often seen as insolent or fractious, there could be nothing further from the truth. In battle, the Falcon's Claws grant no mercy or clemency to their foes, doing so not for the joy of simple slaughter, but in honour of the valour shown them. When they have been observed to fail in respecting the policies and plans of others, it is because their own ways serve them better, allowing the results they garner to speak volumes for the rightness of their actions. The Chapter values courtesy and forthright honesty over protocol and rigid adherence to rules ill-suited for the battlefield, but do not fail to punish those who transgress the rules they have set themselves.
Some consider the Falcon's Claws little more than barbaric savages, akin to wild butchers or executioners of more unorthodox Chapters such as the Blood Vultures and Charnel Brethren, but the Chapter's records of their campaigns suggest otherwise. The Falcon's Claws are pathfinders in both a tactical and strategic sense, amongst the keenest and most proficient breed of the Adeptus Astartes. Exhaustive plans and interminable preparations are not their way, often leaving them at odds with more deliberate and taciturn Chapters descended from the lineage of Dorn or Guilliman.
- "If you can see us, we are dangerous indeed. But that is as nothing to the peril you face if you cannot see us, and all you can hear is our laughter."
- — White Scars proverb
The Falcon's Claws generally follow the dictates of the Codex Astartes, though there are some differences in how it chooses to carry out tactical deployments. The Falcon's Claws specialise in guerrilla tactics behind enemy lines, often operating deep in hostile territory for extended periods without support, using precisely coordinated attacks and refraining from fruitless frontal assaults or protracted attrition warfare. The Falcon's Claws prefer to employ their Scouts and Vanguard Marines, preferring to employ these assets, along with their assault units and Terminator elites, in precision strikes to overwhelm an enemy at strategically crucial junctures after determining the most effective pressure point at which to break the enemy. The Chapter then strikes hard, launching deadly precision decapitation strikes upon locations of tactical importance in order to cripple the foe.
During an Imperial campaign, the Falcon's Claws will range far ahead of an Imperial strike force's advance, serving as long-range scouts, assassins and harriers. The Falcons strike without warning, raiding and killing, drawing out the foe and testing its defences and tactics, always watching and learning - broadcasting the knowledge won with the blood of their brothers so that the follow-on Imperial fleets can bring the Emperor's wrath down upon the enemies of Mankind. Before battle is joined by their allies, the Chapter's Scouts and Primaris Vanguards mark key points of assault and egress, destroying supply routes and eliminating key commanders. These squads are formed from those battle-brothers who are chosen on pure merit as the best marksmen and infiltrators in the Chapter. It is their task to identify and take out a foe's command structure, eliminating its warlords, officers, priests, demagogues and whatever form their commanders take, and slay them with a well-placed stalker bolt round while the chaos of battle rages around them.
Most unusual, in keeping with their willingness to make use of every available resource available to them, the Falcon's Claws often take direct charge of any Astra Militarum units made available in a given theatre. In direct contravention of the strictures of the Codex, rather than deferring to this organisation's intrinsic leadership, these Astartes often deploy their own warriors among the mortal human forces and then take a direct hand in their disposition and tactics.
Highly skilled not only as scouts, but as ambushers capable of laying deadly traps for the foe, Falcon's Claws excel at reading the battlefield and determining from where the enemy is likely to launch their attack, or in which direction they are likely to be mounting their defence. Using a planet's topography, they are able to predict the foe's movements with remarkable accuracy. This enables the Falcons to relay vital intelligence to Imperial high command, conveying the enemy's plan of attack, and co-ordinate the laying of ambushes to decapitate the enemy formation before it gains momentum. Harrying the enemy's advance from their vulnerable rear flanks, the Falcon's Claws are able to effectively herd the enemy into a battlefield of their choosing - making it more advantageous to their other forces - ensuring victory against those who would see the Imperium laid low. When the battle is finally over, they pursue and mercilessly slaughter the retreating foe, until none remain.
The gene-seed of the Falcon's Claws is relatively stable and displays no notable genetic idiosyncrasies or aberrations. However, like their genetic forebears, the Chapter's genome seems to have inherited the Chogorian wild savagery and thirst for war. Some have observed the occasional tendency to exceed the wild ferocity of their Chogorian heritage and to cross the line into outright bloodlust. The teachings of Jaghatai Khan state that each warrior must face this trial at some point in his service, and learn to master the savagery within. Only when he has done so can a warrior truly know himself, and do his duty. What has been observed by some as a precursor to genetic instability is regarded by others as a positive trait, and one vital to the Falcon's Claws' countless battle honours.
Primarch's Curse: Chogorian Ferocity
Like many of their fellow Successor Chapters, the Falcon's Claws have also inherited their Progenitor's ferocity that burns like fire within their hearts and blood. Although this savagery and thirst for battle grants them great power it also threatens to consume them with an all-encompassing berserk fury of unrestrained bloodthirsty psychosis. At some point in his life, every Falcon's Claw must face and master the full implications of his own power. The wildness within, when combined with the potency granted by the Space Marines' genetically enhanced physiology is a fearsome weapon indeed, and one that can be as harmful to the subject as to his enemies. Each time he draws upon his ferocity in the heat of battle, the Falcon's Claw takes a step closer to the precipice, beyond which lies the damnation of bloodlust and killing for the sheer sake of it. Worse, the line is invisible until almost crossed, and so the Battle-Brother must exercise prodigious willpower not to exceed it inadvertently. While the vast majority recognise the line when finally it becomes visible and in so doing gain unprecedented mastery of themselves, some do not. Of these, the Falcon's Claws never speak of openly in the presence of outsiders, and their names are hewn from the tablets for all time. It is one of the tasks of the Falcon's Claws Librarians, whom the Chapter calls Storm Walkers, to guide the Battle-Brothers in this journey, whatever its destination.
This genetic curse manifests itself in multiple stages:
- Stage 1 (A Moment Unrestrained): The Battle-Brother's discipline begins to slip and falter, allowing brief moments of untamed ferocity to emerge in the heat of battle. Often, the Battle-Brother will not even know that he is succumbing to this savagery, and it requires the presence of his Brothers to warn him of his failure.
- Stage 2 (Suppressed Rage): Within the darkest reaches of the Battle-Brother's mind lurks the shadow of his rage and fury, seeking any opportunity to emerge, and causing the Battle-Brother to become belligerent and quick to anger.
- Stage 3 (The Savage Within): Near the end, some affected Battle-Brothers are little more than savages filled with madness and rage, striking out at all those around him. While they may have lucid moments where he remembers the noble warrior he once was, these are fleeting and quickly gone to be replaced with only the thought of killing, and he will attack the nearest target (friend or foe) if there is more than one to choose from. At this point, the Battle-Brother is completely within the grip of the feral savagery of their Chogorian heritage and must be transferred to the ranks of the Sagyar Mazan.
As a fleet-based Chapter, the Falcon's Claws recruits from a variety of worlds, drawing from all racial and geographic origins, but these account for a minority of members of the Chapter. Due to their fleet-based nature and endless Crusading, the Falcon's Claws often experience long periods of isolation beyond the borders of the Imperium, forcing them to replenish their ranks in the same fashion as other Chapters that follow the 'Nomad-Predation' pattern of deployment. Often, this is done out of both necessity and practicality, 'as beggars cannot be choosers', as the old Terran saying goes. The Chapter culls potential Aspirants from amongst the strongest youths of liberated Imperial worlds. However, the Chapter often displays a preference for recruiting from certain backwater worlds that contain populations of Asiatic heritage. Those Chapters that recruit from various other stocks strongly disapprove of this practice. Though the majority of the Imperium has moved beyond racial and ethnic stereotyping, the Falcon's Claws seem to be mired in the physiognomic traits of their inherited Chogorian ancestry, which is often an irritant to the other Chapters of the Adeptus Astartes.
The Chapter utilises a variety of trials to select neophytes, many which are intrinsic to the way of life of the warrior nomads of the steppes. The Falcon's Claws prefer to recruit from both feral and death world populations, where constant warring between tribes ensures that bloodlines remain strong, and the leaders of the various communities know that every generation one of the 'mighty ones' descends from the sky to observe their battles. Though the Falcon's Claws remain apart from these tribes, they do not hide their presence when observing a battle, for it inspires combatants to fight all the harder in the knowledge that the living legends of their world are looking on and judging their conduct. Upon the completion of a battle, one or sometimes several warriors (even those wounded unto death) are taken away by silent, grim-faced Zadyin Vokyar, never to be seen again.
The Falcon's Claws draw their recruits from multiple tribes of these various recruitment worlds, many of whom are often engaged in fierce internecine blood feuds that date back countless generations. While psycho-conditioning during the gene-seed implantation process could be used to wipe such feuds from the neophyte's mind, to do so would risk diluting much of what makes an individual a desirable candidate in the first place. In order to overcome the feuding, the Falcon's Claws ensure that Battle-Brothers from the same tribe serve in different squads, making each unit a product of many different tribes and worlds. Intermingled in such a manner, old feuds become largely irrelevant, and without squad mates from the same tribe to reinforce a grudge such matters are quickly forgotten.
However, occasionally some slight thought long ago set aside flares up and Battle-Brothers clash. While unruliness and brawling is unheard of amongst the Falcon's Claws, the Chapter's traditions make allowance for genuine instances of bad blood, and the aggrieved must submit their grievance to their company's Khan, or if sufficiently dire, to the Noyan-Khan himself. So strong is their discipline and loyalty to the Khan that his word of judgement is invariably final. The nature of that judgement depends on circumstances, and may result in a one or both brethren being punished in some way or, in the most extreme of cases, ordered to serve within the ranks of the outcast Sagyar Mazan. Most of the time these disputes are resolved through a contest of strength or endurance, however, at times this is simply not enough for both aggrieved parties. To settle the matter, these clashing brothers will resolve their grievance on the field of battle, jumping at the forefront of a line-breaker assault in order to get to grips with the enemy first or attempt to slay the mightiest foe possible.
The Falcon's Claws have a long and glorious history serving in the Long Vigil for the Deathwatch. Throughout their existence, they have become intimately familiar with the various xenos menaces that have plagued Mankind down the millenia. Since their earliest iteration as a crusading Pioneer Company, this Chapter has continued to maintain a constant vigil against the various xenos threats along the furthest borders of the Imperium, ensuring that the inhabitants of the Ghoul Stars never again threaten the galaxy. Individual Zuuns (companies) perform routine patrols near the edge of this foreboding region of space, and though it brings great distinction to those that undertake this arduous duty, they often return to the bulk of the Chapter fleet changed, having maintained their vigil at the very brink of the Ghoul Stars and facing unknowable terrors that lurk within. Many of these battle-brothers go on to serve in the Deathwatch, for they rank amongst the most dedicated of their Chapter's warriors. The expertise displayed by these deadly xenos-hunters are brought to the fore within the ranks of the Deathwatch, and often, the Falcon's Claws will second entire squads to stand vigil with the Watch Fortresses within the Jericho Reach.
Ambaghai Noyan-Khan, 'The Tempest Son'
- "He carried the sulde for the sake of his kinsmen."
"He plunged into battle with the dogs."
'I will massacre them all,' he said, 'and take their skulls as trophies.'"
- — From the Saga of The Tempest Son
Patriarch and first Noyan-Khan of the Falcon's Claws. Originally known as Lars Elrich, he was a part of the first induction of potential candidates for the proto-Legions of the early Legiones Astartes during the Terran Wars of Unity. Elrich was taken from the blasted pits of one of the great underhives of the Nord Merican continent, transfigured from the foul slums of his birth and inducted into the nascent V Legion, Elrich was assigned to the Pioneer Companies - one of several organised autonomous companies, that stood apart from the main body of the V Legion.
Elrich fought as one of the many 'Stalker' cadres of the 731st Pioneer Company, or 'Grey Ghosts', for which the 731st were renowned. Quickly rising to prominence, he eventually saw himself elevated to the esteemed rank of First Captain, commanding the entirety of the Grey Ghosts who fought alongside the 98th Imperial Expeditionary Fleet of the Imperial Fists Legion. Following the discovery of the V Legion Primarch, Jaghatai Khan, upon the feral world of Chogoris, the Pioneer Companies were recalled to meet their gene-sire and undergo a Legion reorganisation in according to the whims of their new Khagan. After being fully initiated into the reborn White Scars Legion, Elrich took the name Ambaghai to show his loyalty to the Great Khan.
As he continued to serve during the Great Crusade, he earned great renown in the eyes of the Khagan, eventually rising to the esteemed position of Noyan-Khan, and charged with leading one of the great Ordus of the V Legion. Authorised by the Khagan himself to operate autonomously for extended periods of time, Ambaghai led his great Ordu to bring the light of the Emperor's Imperial Truth to the darkest corners of the galaxy, far in advance of the rest of his Legion, to the furthest reaches of known space, near the mysterious region known as the Ghoul Stars.
Following the outbreak of the Horus Heresy and the formation of the massive warp storm, known as the Ruinstorm, Ambaghai and his Ordu were effectively cut off from the rest of their Legion for the remainder of the conflict. They threw themselves wholesale into the crucible of war as if to absolve their inability to fight alongside the Khagan and their fellow warriors. Scattering across the stars, Ambaghai and his Ordu waged a private guerrilla war in a desperate attempt to halt the Traitor advance. They struck from the outer dark like a lightning bolt - sowing chaos and destruction - and just as swiftly, fading away before the Traitors could strike back. Earning the moniker, 'The Tempest Son', which soon became a byword for destruction behind the Traitor lines, Ambaghai and his warriors continued to wage their private war unabated.
The full role taken by this independent battlegroup was impossible to collate, nevertheless, fragmented accounts of dozens of battles are extant in the scattered records of this era. Despite the dangers the Ruinstorm presented, The Tempest Son braved the unpredictable and dangerous eddies and tempests of the Immaterium, and fought his way back towards the Imperial Throneworld, arriving just after the end of the final apocalyptic battle of the Siege of Terra. In the aftermath of this bloody battle, there was much confusion amongst the remaining Loyalist forces, for they had lost their liege lord at the hands of the Arch-Traitor. Wounded unto death, the Emperor was interred into the Golden Throne, doomed to spend an eternity in painful purgatory. It was said that the Khagan, as was often the way, took his own counsel and sent forth The Tempest Son and the Burgediin Sarhvu to hunt down the Traitors. Others say that Ambaghai and his warriors pursued the heretics of their own accord, as hounds at the chase who heed not the calls of their huntsman.
Enraged at their inability to take part in this, the greatest of battles, Ambaghai and several other of his like-minded brothers gave chase to the Traitors in order to utterly destroy them for the woe they had wrought. Thus began the great war of reciprocity, known as the Scouring. Even after the Traitors were driven into the Eye of Terror, Ambaghai and his warriors would continue to pursue the dregs of Horus' Traitor Legion forces and those heretics that were still loyal to the Warmaster's lost cause.
At the dawning of the 32nd Millennium, a new Founding was decreed by the High Lords of Terra. In recognition of his loyalty, dedication and zeal in the persecution of Mankind's enemies, the Great Khan personally chose Ambaghai for the singular honour of becoming the first Chapter Master of a newly founded Successor Chapter. They exchanged their White Scars livery for the black and white of the Burgediin Sarhvu, becoming reborn as the Falcon's Claws Chapter, even as they still bore the honour scars of Chogoris. Vowing to never rest until all the enemies of Mankind were eradicated, the Falcon's Claws Chapter has continued to prosecute their eternal Crusade across the stars.
- Khaishan Noyan-Khan - Current Chapter Master of the Falcon's Claws.
- Shiramun Khan - Bladeward to the Noyan-Khan, First Captain of the Keshig of the 1st Zuun.
- Jebeioyan Khan - Second Captain of the 2nd Zuun.
- Khulan Khan - Third Captain of the 3rd Zuun.
- Ghazan Khan - Fourth Captain of the 4th Zuun.
- Daritai Khan - Fifth Captain of the 5th Zuun.
- Udutai Khan - Sixth Captain of the 6th Zuun.
- Tordung Khan - Seventh Captain of the 7th Zuun.
- Tugan Khan - Eighth Captain of the 8th Zuun.
- Dhunan Khan - Ninth Captain of the 9th Zuun.
- Serentai Khan - Tenth Captain of the 10th Zuun.
- Stygian Blade (Maelstrom-class Galleass of War) - Flagship of the Falcon's Claws Chapter and de facto, mobile fortress-monastery of the Chapter and repository of the Chapter's genetic legacy and most sacred relics.
- Qin Xa's Fury (Battle Barge)
- Qua-Zar (Battle Barge)
- Silverspear (Battle Barge)
- Holguin's Wrath (Battle Barge)
- Tail of the Dragon (Strike Cruiser)
- Heavenfall (Strike Cruiser)
- The Golden Star (Strike Cruiser)
- Wildfire (Strike Cruiser)
- The Hammerhand (Strike Cruiser)
- Dervish Lord (Hunter-class Destroyer)
- Sojutsu (Hunter-class Destroyer)
- The Bleak Wind (Hunter-class Destroyer)
- White Tiger (Hunter-class Destroyer)
The Falcon's Claws also possess an unknown number of escorts, forge ships, medical frigates, salvage vessels, gunships and various other void-faring support craft.
- Spirit Banner of The Tempest Son - Through the centuries on the rolling, grassy steppes of inner Chogoris, a warrior-herder often carried a Spirit Banner, called a sulde (or tug), constructed by tying strands of hair from his best stallions to the shaft of a spear, just below its blade. Whenever he erected his camp, the warrior planted the Spirit Banner outside the entrance to proclaim his identity and to stand as his perpetual guardian. The Spirit Banner always remained in the open air beneath the Eternal Blue Sky that the native Chogorians worshiped. As the strands of hair blew and tossed in the nearly constant breeze of the steppe, they captured the power of the wind, the sky, and the sun, and the banner channeled this power from nature to the warrior. The wind in the horsehair inspired the warrior's dreams and encouraged him to pursue his own destiny. The streaming and twisting of the horsehair in the wind beckoned the owner ever onward, luring him away from this spot to seek another, to find better pasture, to explore new opportunities and adventures, to create his own fate in his life in this world. The union between the man and his Spirit Banner grew so intertwined that when he died, the warrior's spirit was said to reside forever in those tufts of horsehair. While the warrior lived, the horsehair banner carried his destiny; in death, it became his soul. The physical body was quickly abandoned to nature, but the soul lived on forever in those tufts of horsehair to inspire future generations. Legend has it that Ambaghai Noyan-Khan, the Falcon's Claws' first Chapter Master, had two banners made for very specific purposes. One banner was made from the manes of white horses to use in peacetime - when they encountered newly discovered worlds and entered into negotiations with that planet's rulers, to peacefully bring them into the ever-expanding Imperium of Man. He also had one made from black horses for guidance in war. The white one disappeared early in history, but the black one survived as the repository of his soul, going on to guide the Noyan-Khan during the tumultuous Age of Darkness, during the dark days of the Horus Heresy. In the millennia after his death, the Falcon's Claws continue to honour the banner where the Tempest Son's soul resides. The Spirit Banner of the Tempest Son recounts their patriarch's legacy in the various trophies taken from worthy adversaries and complex carved pattern of images and heraldry, from the carnage and fire of the Horus Heresy through the first clashes with various xenos races to the Chapter's current exploits. The Spirit Banner of Ambaghai Noyan-Khan is the most revered relic of the Chapter, rarely leaving the reliquary of the Falcon's Claws mighty flagship, the Stygian Blade. However, when a warrior carries the Spirit Banner of the Tempest Son into battle, it becomes a rally point for the Nokud, infusing them with the wrath of the Khagan and the righteousness of the Emperor.
- Blade of Holguin - This mighty relic blade was crafted by one of the Chapter's most legendary Forge Wrights (whose name has now been lost to the ages) and once belonged to Holguin Noyan-Khan, who led the Falcon's Claw Chapter during the middle centuries of M32, during the massive greenskin invasion of the brutal Ork warlord known only as The Beast. This master-crafted weapon takes the form of a power falchion, a heavy, brutal power weapon that combines the striking power of a power axe with the versatility of a power sword. The Blade of Holguin has a broad blade with a single cutting edge that tapers to the hilt and the tip of the blade is heavy and curves up in a dramatic sweep. This makes the weapon more suited to chopping strikes as opposed to deft manoeuvres, and in the hands of a skilled user can rend armour and remove limbs with ease.
- Totem of Kyubalei - The Storm Walkers aer the Librarians of the Falcon's Claws - powerful figures within the Chapter which advise its commanders, administer spiritually to the Chapter's battle-brothers and keep its lore. The Storm Walkers are held in veneration for their heroic acts and the vaults of the Stygian Blade are filled with artefacts from countless Storm Walkers that have served in aeons past. Once such artefact is the Totem of Kyubalei - a long staff adorned with a beast skull and a knot of course hair. No records still remain of Kyubalei or his accomplishments, but his staff has served other Storm Walkers through the millennia. The staff helps Storm Walkers in focusing their powers, channelling ancient spirits and casting their auguries for the Noyan-Khans.
- The Tempest Blade - An ancient White Scars relic, the Tempest Blade is a dazzling silver power sword with a jagged blade crafted in the shape of a lightning bolt. Seemingly heavy and unbalanced upon first inspection, the sword appears more a ceremonial piece than the true weapon of war. When its power field is activated it springs to life, blue radiance arcing from its edge and intricate, hidden suspensors in its hilt making it as light as a feather.
The Falcon's Claws wear the ancient livery of the bygone order of the Burgediin Sarhvu, which consists of primarily black coloured battle-plate, with the shoulder insets, gorget (neck guard) and poleyns (knee guards) being coloured white. Instead of the standard Codex-proscribed squad speciality symbols to denote a battle-brothers' squad assignment (Tactical, Devastator, Assault and Veteran), the Falcon's Claws utilise Chogorian runic symbols that were commonly used by the ancient V Legion of old.
Like their genetic forebears, the Falcon's Claws also wear their company and squad markings on their poleyns and greaves as opposed to displaying them on their shoulder pauldrons. Instead of the usual Codex-proscribed gothic or roman numerals, the Falcon's Claws also utilise iconography based upon the ancient imagery common to the tribes of Chogoris. This iconography takes the form of jagged lightning bolt designs painted onto their battleplate. Squad markings are displayed on the left poleyn while company designation is displayed on the left greave. The Falcon's Claws helmets usually displays lighting iconography, which designates an individual battle-brother's tribal markings.
In appearance, the Falcon's Claws bear a close resemblance to their White Scars ancestors before the Horus Heresy, maintaining the original colours of the Burgediin Sarhvu, and many battle-brothers wear older variants of Astartes power armour that have been kept by the Chapter since the V Legion's early days before the Horus Heresy. This includes suits of Mark II-VI pattern armours. No marks of armour more recent than Mark VI "Corvus" pattern battle-plate have been observed to be utilised by the Chapter. The Chapter's armour is often a mix of styles and variants, gathered from hidden V Legion armouries and forgotten Legiones Astartes depots scattered across the galaxy.
In addition to bearing such venerated patterns of armour, the Falcon's Claws also carry many weapons and other items that ordinarily would be considered relics into battle. The elite 1st Zuun wear several older patterns of relic Cataphractii pattern Terminator Armour as well as the superior Tartaros pattern. There are even a few examples of the ancient Saturnyne pattern Terminator Armour that has been observed being worn by the Chapter's veterans during Zone Mortalis operations.
Livery & Markings
The Falcon's Claws take fierce pride in their Chogorian ancestry, using the arts and styles of the steppe tribes of their gene-sire's homeworld. Their armour is also often engraved with primitive Brahmic script, whose exact meanings are not understood by those outside Scions of the Khagan. They also proudly display many ancient symbols that represent the various orders, companies and squad specialties, in lieu of standard Codex-proscribed symbols, many of which carry significant meaning to the Falcon's Claws and other Chapters descended from the lineage of the White Scars. In this way, the Falcon's Claws honour their heritage and keep alive the deeds and spirits of their V Legion ancestors.
The Falcon's Claws' Chapter badge is a stylised black colour falcons claws, centered within a hexagon-shaped border rendered in the style of the Chogorian steppe tribes. This symbol is centered upon a field of pure white.
The Marauding Eagles are a savage and bellicose 8th Founding and sole Successor Chapter of the berserk Destroyers Chapter, through the lineage of the White Scars. Despite their bloody conduct and brutal reputation, the Falcon's Claws have fought alongside their savage kin on several occasions down the long millennia. Though they appear uncouth and barbaric to outsiders, the Falcon's Claws admire their cousin Chapter as the embodiment of the savage spirit of Jaghatai Khan that burns fiercely in the hearts within the breasts of all Scions of the Khagan. Often, the two Chapters have fought in tandem, their complementing styles of stealth and overwhelming force acting as a hammer and anvil - resulting in the destruction of those foolish enough to stand before them. Down the long millennia, these two Chapters have formed a strong bond, tempered in the heat of battle, and will willingly answer one another's call for aid should the need arise.
The Storm Riders are a 4th Founding Successor Chapter of the lineage of the great Khagan, created during the tumultuous era of the middle centuries of M32, in the wake of the near-disastrous war with the massive greenskin invasion of the deadly Ork warlord known only as The Beast. Despite being a highly aggressive and bellicose Chapter, dichotomously, their duality of nature has been displayed in the nobility of their character. They display the admiral trait of stoicism in the face of adversity and fierce loyalty to their duty in protecting the weak and the innocent, embodying all that is best in the Scions of the Khagan. On several occasions these two Chapters have fought alongside one another, playing instrumental roles in achieving great Imperial victories in the face of certain defeat. The bonds of brotherhood forged between these bond-brothers are stronger than tempered steel. To further enhance their bonds of friendship, an exchange program of battle-brothers was instituted between these two Chapters and has been maintained for several centuries.
The Storm Sons are a younger Successor Chapter that also hails from the lineage of Jaghatai Khan. Created during the 24th Founding in M39, like their genetic forebears, they enact swift and brutal justice against those who transgress against the Emperor and His Imperium. The Storm Sons' and the Falcon's Claws' similar styles of warfare and tactics complement one another nearly flawlessly, as both Chapters are mobile and highly adaptable. Though the Storm Sons have only fought alongside their elder kinsmen on a handle of occasions, when they have done so, they've helped achieve key victories during several notable periods in Imperial history.
By the Falcon's Claws
- "All this was a simple game of opposites. You allowed yourself to be confident in the reading of my Legion, when all along my purpose was to make you fall prey to hubris. Your attempt to concentrate and misdirect my force was well chosen, but flawed from the outset, because you did not consider I could be here personally, or that my men might employ different strategies. Unfortunate for you that, in the war of storms, I am the stronger wind. Know that failure is not a sin. You fought well."
- — Attributed to Ambaghai Noyan-Khan, 'The Tempest Son', at the conclusion of the Battle of Varagol IV, just before the execution of Jarok Null, Chieftain of the Sons of Horus Legion.
- "The greatest joy for a warrior is to defeat his enemies, to see them driven before you, to take from them all they possess."
- — Khaishan Noyan-Khan, current Lord of the Falcon's Claws Chapter
- "Trust in your steed, trust in your brothers. But do not tempt fate."
- — Zadyin Vokyer Kekchu to newly inducted Aspirants.
- "We will fall from the sky like lightning and lay waste to these heretics with fire and blade. So I swear by our Chogorian ancestors, the Khagan and the Emperor Himself!"
- — Ghazan Khan, 4th Zuun ('Brotherhood of the Black Falcon')
About the Falcon's Claws
The runic script commonly seen upon the battle-plate of the White Scars and their Successor Chapters is known as 'Phags-pa script, which was created by the Tibetan monk known as 'Phags-pa (1230-1280) at the behest of Kublai Khan between 1260 and 1269. It was intended for use as the "National Script" of the Mongolian Empire, and was used during 13th and 14th centuries for writing Mongolian, Chinese, Uighur, Tibetan and other languages.
The 'Phags-pa script belongs to the extensive Brahmic family of scripts, which includes Devanagari and most other Indian scripts, as well as many scripts across South-East Asia, and various historical scripts from Central Asia. The letters of the 'Phags-pa script are derived directly from the Tibetan script, and many of the letters are very similar, or even identical, to their Tibetan counterparts.
|White Scars Successor Chapters|
|3th Founding||Falcon's Claws • Solar Falcons •|
|4th Founding||Storm Riders •|
|8th Founding||Desert Hawks • Destroyers of Worlds • Marauding Eagles •|
|10th Founding||Wind Runners • Knights of the Frost •|
|13th 'Dark' Founding||•|
|15th Founding||Celestial Heralds •|
|20th Founding||Warriors Tempest •|
|21st 'Cursed' Founding||Grey Hounds •|
|23rd 'Sentinel' Founding||Cobalt Leviathans • Dragons of Suzanoo • Knights of War • Sons of Neptune • Steel Tigers • Thousand Blades • World Marauders •|
|24th Founding||Condor Wings • Storm Sons •|
|25th 'Bastion' Founding||Storm Heralds •|
|26th Founding||Jade Knives • Maroon Hunters • Quandom Falcons •|
|Ultima Founding||Chogorian Outriders • Nergüi Ghosts • Solar Spectres •|
|Unknown Foundings||Blades of the Wolf • Dawn Lords • Iron Bison • Smilodons •|
|Third Founding Space Marine Chapters|
|Dark Angels Successors||Blades of the Lion • Judicators • Lion's Praetorians • Lion's Regents • Silver Lions • White Lions •|
|White Scars Successors||Falcon's Claws • Solar Falcons •|
|Space Wolves Successors||N/A|
|Imperial Fists Successors||Astral Paladins • Black Mastodons • Crimson Robes • Imperial Sentinels • Ironclad Templars • Phrygian Knights • Tempest Knights •|
|Blood Angels Successors||Blood Bearers • Draconian Impalers • Hussars Sanguine • Iron Spears •|
|Iron Hands Successors||Atomic Gladiators • Hell Conquerors •|
|Ultramarines Successors||Armageddon Sons • Imperators • Imperius Ravagers • Sons of Odin • Steel Hart • Warstalkers •|
|Salamanders Successors||Ashen Knights • Brotherhood of Embers • Doom Sentinels • Ember Drakes • Ignitors • The Pure •|
|Raven Guard Successors||Astral Reapers • Void Ravens •|
|Unknown Lineage||Champions of Mortis • Golden Torches • Penitent Knights • Steel Harbingers • Zero Legion •|