For what feels like several centuries I’ve been using this blog to promise that I was going to tackle my Cawdor gang for Necromunda “soon”. “Soon” it turns out is a relative term. The new Cawdor first emerged from the Underhive in 2018 and I was instantly captivated and determined to start a gang of my own. Of course now we’re well into 2020 and as yet the gang remains in its infancy.
That’s not to say there’s been nothing painted at all, I have managed to put brush to model a few times, enough to finish off these five fine fellows (and their bird).
However I still have quite a lot of these ragged crusaders waiting in the wings and I’m sure a lot of regular readers were starting to doubt that the day would ever come when I finally gave them the attention they deserve (I know I was). At last however that moment has come, I’ve cleared everything else to the edges of the painting desk (already a very crowded place!) and focused my attention on the God-Emperor’s filthiest servants. First things first, every crusade needs a leader so I pushed Marrowkin the Saint of Ashes to the front of the queue.
Once just an ordinary ganger, fighting the God-Emperor’s wars in the badzones and rad-shanties shellward of the Halcyon Gate, Marrowkin’s story took a dramatic turn when his crew discovered a previously undiscovered passage leading beneath the rubble and into a claustrophobic maze of unexplored passages. The air was stagnant, the light of their candles struggled to push back the curtains of heavy shadow and their prayers to Him Upon Terra were devoured by the darkness – and what echoes did come back to them were twisted, mocking things, sounding as though they were spoken by fell, inhuman tongues. Undeterred the gang headed downwards. Clearly this was a place of muties and other degenerates, a place to which the God-Emperor’s light must be brought until fear and fire drove back all the unclean things which dared to dwell in His realm.
They found fire and fear true enough, but it was not them which brought it.
Rumours have long circulated that beneath Hive Volatos lie the Black Manufactoria, entire levels given over to the manufacture of goods and weapons crafted through the foul rituals of Chaos and governed by terrible queens born of the hive’s long lost Escher tribes. Can it really be true that such places exist, right beneath the feet of the Goliaths and Orlocks who dominate the city above? Marrowkin at least believes that it is. He alone was discovered afterwards, washed through an outflow pipe into the chem-lakes that bubble to the south of the hive. His body was burned and mutilated, his memories fragmented, his mind scoured by madness, but his faith and hatred was stronger than ever. Only by the God-Emperor’s mercy had he survived, and now the time had come for him to replay His gift. Hive Volatos was corrupted, its heart dark with the canker of Chaos, and Marrowkin would purify it. He would make the hive itself into a pyre; dome by dome, floor by floor, heretic by heretic if necessary.
The Cawdor of the chem-lakes were themselves a shattered band. Ash-crust miners from the sacrilegious, mutie-harbouring Cult of the Abyssal Gaze had pushed into their territory and the Cawdor were fighting a war for survival. Their leaders and champions were already gone and the last survivors were being hunted down like rats. Yet in the broken form of Marrowkin they found an unlikely saviour, one who would yet see them claw their way back from the edge of extinction. Mad he may be but he recognised that the chem-lakes was not a turf they could or should attempt to hold. Instead he ceded control of the lakes to the xenos and took his new gang back into the hive proper. His crew feared the fate that they knew would befall them as soon as Korg and his Goliaths found them trespassing on his turf but to their surprise they found the way cleared and sudden opportunity laid before them. Whilst they had been battling for survival out in the lakes Korg had been slain, his followers massacred and the survivors scattered. Had Marrowkin’s zealotry and fiery sermons not already convinced them this would have been enough to convince them that truly they walked in the company of a downhive saint. Two miracles could now be attributed to him; first his rebirth from the horrors of the deep-hive, and now the sweeping aside of the once unassailable Korg. Truly the Emperor had turned His gaze upon them, now it was up to them to prove themselves worthy of His regard. Settling in the Sumpside district that runs along the partly-flooded levels west of Ironhouse they have put out the call for those of faith to join their crusade. Already many Cawdor have come, drawn by the words of the Saint and tales of the powers attributed to him. After all, who would not wish to fight beneath the banner of the man who called down the God-Emperor’s wrath on the mighty Korg himself? Truly it is time for the faithless to know fear…