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Faith and Betrayal

"House of Dust and Ash"

BY ORDER OF HIS MOST HOLY MAJESTY THE GOD-EMPEROR OF TERRA INQUISITOR GRAMEN SAND’S PERSONAL LOGS- AUTHORISED PERSONNEL ONLY

• Log Number 126:44V:DD3:Hex
• Work Station Location: Amber2

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• Date: 815.M41
• Transcription: Adept Thodinna, Ordo Xenos, Hive Glorianna, Solomon
• Subject: Missing Operatives- Red Cell

Following my meeting at the Chancellery Court with Inquisitor Silas Marr, I have personally involved myself in the efforts to locate my missing Acolytes. Tasking Razor Cell with the bulk of the investigation duties on the planet of Solomon, much has been discovered concerning the path travelled by Red Cell. I am disappointed by the lack of information provided to me by Marr, and I know better than to test the boundaries with such an established Inquisitor that may, should the rumors be true, have the ears of leadership in the Inquisition above those of Lord Caidin himself. Marr’s statement about undisclosed person(s) singling out members of Red Cell for use in this mission troubles me. I know not who these individuals are or what their intentions are with my Acolytes. Hopefully more than petty revenge from my enemies is the cause. More research is needed in the matter and perhaps locating Mir and his team will lead to answers.

Much of Red Cell’s movements have been traced since their arrival on Solomon. After their meeting with Inquisitor Marr at the Chancellery Court, they departed via a sky ship named the Cygnan Martyr to a remote volcano island called the House of Dust and Ash. The House of Dust and Ash is an ancient facility manned and operated by ancient charter by a group called the Sorrowful Guild. Due to ancient laws, the location is exempt from planetary and even some Imperial laws and often serves as neutral ground for meetings and exchanges between opposing parties. It takes two days of travel over a huge deadly acidic ocean called the Balemire Sea and I’m told that in addition to the dangerous waters and sudden storms, there are also raiders called Wreckers who prey on sky ships far from the protection of the planet’s security forces.
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Hive records confirm that the Cygnan Martyr did indeed depart on time and I was able to obtain a copy of the ship’s passenger manifest confirming that Red Cell was indeed on board with several other personalities and their accompanying attendants and bodyguards. On the list were a Lord Cistern from Solomon, Lord Melua from Malfi, an Ecclessiarchy official called Tomas of Shale (though I have yet to positively confirm the identity of this individual with the Ministorum), two individuals named Vymer and Quill (who I have traced back as bonded members of the Malfian Bloodsworn assassin guild), and a woman named Octavia Nile (who I have identified from my files as an operative from the tech-heretic cult, the Logicians). Apparently all of these individuals, including Red Cell through their cover identities provided by Marr, were provided with invitations to attend an elite auction of items from the estate of the infamous Rogue Trader Erasmus Haarlock. No doubt that several of these individuals, if not all, are interested in purchasing some of the powerful, and most likely heretical, items that are rumored to have been possessed by the powerful Rogue Trader. This is the second time that Haarlock’s name has turned up in recent investigations, the first was during Red Cell’s investigation of a Chaos Daemon on the planet of Sinophia, and I am beginning to suspect that there is a relation to the two events; to have Red Cell involved in both of these Haarlock incidents leads me to suspect that someone or some force has a hand in these ‘coincidences.’

The house of dust and ashI was unsure whether or not Red Cell made it to the House of Dust and Ash, but I know that Legate Mir and his team are a capable group and was willing to assume that storms and Wreckers would not be enough to stop Red Cell. Of more concern were the reports that I reviewed from the planet’s Geomancer stations of the Adeptus Mechanicus concerning a powerful eruption of the volcano where the House of Dust and Ash is located. The volcano eruption had an estimated force equal to approx. 10 megatons and was accompanied by an earthquake with a seismic rating of 5.7. I had my worries that should Red Cell have made it to the island, they were victims of the volcano. I had to be sure though, so I chartered a sky ship for myself and Razor Cell named the Menoth Rider and made the trip to the island.

The trip was suspiciously uneventful and we made it to the island ahead of schedule. The sight that greeted us was of devastation. Remnants of the volcano’s massive ash column were still present but the House of Dust and Ash, and any other fabricated structures that were on the island, were nowhere to be found- apparently having been obliterated completely in the volcano’s eruption. Some more hardy pieces of wreckage could still be found floating in the acidic sea and on one of these floating debris we found a man barely clinging to life named Shadrack- apparently Captain Shadrack was the captain of the Cygnan Martyr.

Suffering from acidic burns, dehydration, exposure and ash inhalation, Captain Shadrack was babbling all manner of nonsense and it was difficult to separate truth from delirious ranting. BeHe was able to confirm that Red Cell did make it to the island in time for the auction. Though he did not venture into the House of Dust and Ash himself, Shadrack was able to tell me, based on information learned from his crew and inhabitants of the island, that three other sky ships with auction goers arrived at the island. His description of some of these individuals alarmed me, especially a suspensor-borne individual hooked up to various life support apparatus who I believe might be a highly dangerous and wanted heretic named Tobias Belasco. Shadrack told me stories about murders and disappearances at the House of Dust and Ash happening just days prior to the auction taking place and though he himself did not see the items for sale, he heard about them and described various fascinating and horrible ancient artifacts, as well as items that I suspected were Xenos tech.

Shadrack told me how he agreed to wait for Red Cell to take them back to the mainland but never got the chance because the volcano erupted. The eruption and earthquake destroyed everything on the island and sank his sky ship. He was sure that he was the lone survivor of the island’s fury but told me that he was surprised when he observed several shuttles descend on the smoking island and leave. He could not tell me if these shuttles were able to salvage auction items or take survivors. Unfortunately, no more could be learned from Shadrack as his injuries were too grievous and his life functions gave out. His report cannot be ignored though- with the shuttles there is still hope.

  • GM’s Note: This mission was ran with modifications from the adventure found in Fantasy Flight’s “Disciples of the Dark Gods” book. It can be found here:

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