A Pale and Distant Beacon
The Stormcrows Space Marine Chapter
The Stormcrows Chapter are a successor to the Raven Guard Legion and count Corax as their Primarch. Their heraldry is a golden lightning bolt emerging from red wings beneath a black skull. Their colours are a deep blue-black with gold and red trimming and detailing. They fulfil a long-range recon and threat assessment role within the Imperium, working closely with the Ordo Xenos and the sector Battlefleets in identifying and neutralising potential external threats before they hit imperial space. They have no home base but operate entirely from the battle-barges Morrigan, Scourge of Lycaeus and their support fleet including the strike cruisers Cernunnos and The Narrow House.
House Zarkhov was amongst the most trusted rogue trader dynasties in the early Imperium and given the task of seeking out the scattered Primarchs of the Emperor’s beloved Astartes. Imanuel Zarkhov was the man who discovered Deliverance (then Lycaeus) and brought Corax back to the Emperor’s right hand. For this deed the House has long been held in great regard by all Raven Guard successor chapters. An honour guard consisting of a full company of Astartes was made available to the bearer of the Zarkhov warrant at all times. After the second founding the Stormcrows assumed this duty on behalf of their brothers and the relationship has proved a useful one for both parties. In violation of the Codex Astartes the Stormcrows have maintained an eleventh company under arms for this purpose. Each company would serve for a century before the Changing of the Guard, a ceremony of great import in the calendar of both the dynasty and the chapter.
Some 800 years ago the Stormcrows suffered terrible losses during a brutal campaign against the 12th Black Crusade (The Gothic Crusade). With the chapter reduced to less than a third of operating strength Lord-Captain Bain Zarkhov returned the 11th Company to the Stormcrows who promised to answer the call of the Zarkhov’s should they be needed again in the future. For the next seven centuries House Zarkhov prospered without its Astartes warriors. At the beginning of his formation of the grand fleet Imanuel Zarkhov met with Chapter-master Tristan Landsman and requested the return of the 11th for his great endeavour. After the meeting Landsman stepped down as Chapter-master. He was succeeded by Edwin Alexander who appointed Landsman as Captain of the 11th. The Stormcrows 11th Company were transferred to the Storm of Rebuke and Zarkhov continued with the formation of his fleet.
Today the Stormcrows are en route to the Koronus Expanse. Ostensibly they are going to conduct a threat assessment of ‘Undred ‘Undred Teef. They will try to head off the looming Waaaagh if possible. Edwin Alexander has also heard the Zarkhov warrant is once more plying the space lanes. He is anxious to know what happened to his former commander and comrades. He also has business with Inquisitor Van Vuygens of the Ordo Xenos relating to a possible Tyranid threat to Calixis.