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The Celestial Vindicators: The Vengeful

The Vengeful, the Hate-fuelled, the Hurricane of Blades

The Celestial Vindicators are vengeance incarnate. Their hearts burn with an enmity for Chaos that knows no bounds. To witness them in battle is to see a hurricane of razored sigmarite break upon the foe until nothing is left alive, for these bladesmen value neither mercy nor restraint.

The Celestial Vindicators were forged not from those who implored Sigmar for salvation, but from those who demanded a chance for retribution. Their close-knit brotherhoods are united in their burning hatred of Chaos, and none lay claim to a graver calling than the Warrior Chamber of Thostos Bladestorm. Its phalanxes are like natural disasters given form; once unleashed upon the foe, they will fight with great fury until the last spark has been extinguished from their bodies. Each warrior has a tale of atrocity and madness in his past that drives him on like a raging engine of destruction.Thostos’ chamber, known as the Bladestorm, is treated with caution even by its allies. When the killing wrath is upon them, there is little that can stop their rampage.[1a]

As mortals, each of the warriors that would become the Celestial Vindicators had prayed to Sigmar whilst still soaked in the blood of the enemy. They did not pray to be saved, avenged or transported to safety. Instead they implored the powers above for strength enough to smite those who had wronged them. They were not given their retribution then and there, but snatched up to the Heavens. Since that day they have become a part of something much larger – the raging typhoon of war that Sigmar unleashes on his foes.

Sixth to be founded, the Celestial Vindicators are born in wrath. Uniquely, during their reforging, the Celestial Vindicators have to pass through the towering Sturmdrang Gate. To brave the black fire of that portal is an ordeal unto itself, and only souls whose hatred burns with the heat of an Aqshian furnace can hope to survive. Many do not return. Those who make it through are given a measure of the holy rage that roared like a caged lion in the heart of the God-King himself during the Long Wait.

By chanting grim war songs, the Celestial Vindicators are able to channel their fury. They find focus in repeating the same chapter and verse aloud with their fellows. In the heat of combat, however, their hate becomes a wildfire that cannot be extinguished, consuming all rational thought – it is said that a silent Celestial Vindicator is the most terrifying of all, for he speaks with actions alone.

The Vindicators’ close-knit brotherhoods are so united in their burning hatred of Chaos that their phalanxes attack like natural disasters given form. Once unleashed upon the foe, they will typically advance regardless of wider strategy, hacking down the enemy with great fury until the last spark has been extinguished from their bodies. Many are the times when their fury leads to recklessness, causing them to press too deeply into the foe, but the intensity of that same fury can see them fight clear once more.

The Lord-Celestants of the Celestial Vindicators believe the best way to triumph over Chaos is with unrestrained force of arms. They always lead from the front, using their armies as line-breaker forces to sunder the most resolute enemy battle-lines so that the wider hosts of Order might win victory in their wake. Those who follow in their stead have often compared the sight before them to a field of corn being reaped by a thousand blades, with every fallen stalk the hacked-open body of a warrior who stood against them.

Each Stormcast of the Celestial Vindicators has a tale of atrocity and madness from their past that drives them ever onward. This gives them an incredible force of personality – it is said that some Celestial Vindicators can melt copper with the intensity of their stare. It also makes them single-minded, and perhaps even blinkered, and those who have been extensively reforged fight more like wrecking balls or battering rams than astute tacticians. The lessons of cooperation and patience taught to them in the Gladitorium are often lost to the pure, driving power of rage. Some say they seek to become living weapons, and that they revere a figure known as the Father of Blades – an impassive animus comprised of the steel-spirits of twelve ancient duardin runeswords that were gifted to Sigmar’s chosen chieftains in aeons long past. Whatever the truth, their kinship with the blade is clear to all who witness them. Many Celestial Vindicators wield a blade in each hand, the better to reap a high tally.

The Stormhost’s tendency to descend into monomania is exemplified in the tragic history of the slain Lord-Celestant Thostos Bladestorm, whose bravery and skill is commemorated in a hundred statues across the free cities of the realms. It was Thostos that first located Ghal Maraz in the Eldritch Fortress of Anvrok and fought to retrieve it, in the process becoming transmuted into a form of living metal before being finally slain by anarchic Tzeentchian magic. Upon his reforging he seemed taciturn and grim, becoming ever more laconic. His valour, however, was undimmed. At the battle of the Mercurial Gate in Chamon, he charged in fearlessly to fight Archaon himself. Thostos fell, and was devoured by Archaon’s steed Dorghar, trapped forever as a corpse in the belly of that eldritch daemonic beast.

Though that brotherhood of Celestial Vindicators has a new Lord-Celestant in the form of the strong-limbed Ortus Drakehewer, Thostos’ chamber, known as the Bladestorm, is treated with caution even by its allies. When the killing wrath is upon them, there is little that can stop their rampage. There are rumours that they have spurned the orders of city councils that have sought their aid, going their own way in search of revenge and stranding their allies. Some even whisper that the Bladestorm make little distinction between those who stand before them and those who stand beside them when the battle rage waxes high. It is said that to witness their hurricane of blades is to risk feeling the deadly kiss of steel a dozen times over.

Known organisation