PURGE THE UNCLEAN
Grey Knights Space Marine Chapter
The Space Marines of the Adeptus Astartes are the mightiest warriors in the Imperium and their fury in battle is legendary. Few can stand against the might of a Space Marine Chapter and the foes of Mankind tremble at their name. But there are alien races whose evil is beyond human understanding and beings that exist outside the realm of realspace that seek to plunge Humanity into the realm of Chaos. To face such foes demands warriors whose hearts and souls are trained to withstand extremes of pain and terror, whose faith in the Emperor is as unwavering as it is strong. Since the dawn of the Imperium, brotherhood of specially trained Space Marines have fought these foes and defeated them. They are the Grey Knights.
Founded in great secrecy around the time of the Second Founding (although this is uncertain), the Grey Knights are amongst the most highly specialised defenders of Humanity in existence. Uniquely amongst the Space Marines of the Adeptus Astartes, the Grey Knights Chapter has no antecedents, having been created from specifically engineered gene-seed. Legend has it that the Emperor himself ordered the creation of this unique Chapter to form a force designed to fight the dread creatures of Chaos, though, of course, this is impossible to verify. Following the awesome scale of bloodshed during the Horus Heresy, the necessity for such a force was clear. Designated Chapter 666, the Grey Knights are permanently attached to that most secretive of organisations, the Ordo Malleus. The Ordo Malleus is only ever spoken of in whispers and though its stated purpose is to keep watch on the Inquisition itself, its true purpose is far more sinister, the destruction of the daemonic.
The Grey Knights form the main fighting strength of the Ordo Malleus and, traditionally, its Chapter Master is a member of the Inner Conclave of the Inquisition. The men of the Grey Knights are no ordinary warriors. Plucked from the fiercest warrior cultures on a dozen different worlds, only the bravest and strongest youths are selected for the training. Aspirants are taken to the Chapter's base on Saturn's moon, Titan, where they undergo arduous tests of faith, strength, endurance and courage that break all but the strongest warriors. Those few that survive the tests are then implanted with the gene-seed that will transform them into superhuman Space Marines. Now the aspirants are ready to begin their real training.
The most advanced bio-engineering and psycho-surgery is utilised to condition the Grey Knights into warriors of great prowess. The six hundred and sixty six Rituals of Detestation enable the Space Marines of the Grey Knights to face terrifying foes without fear and withstand pain that would cripple a 'normal' Space Marine. Their lives are filled with ritual, meditation and self-denial, designed to strengthen the mind and steel the soul against the horrors of the daemonic. The Chapter's warriors are heavily conditioned to resist the whispered seductions of Chaos and the honeyed lies of daemonic creatures. These precautions are vital and, thus far, have proven to be effective, as not a single Grey Knight has faltered in battle or become a pawn of the Dark Powers.
It is through unprotected psykers that daemonic creatures can gain entry to the material universe and it is for this reason that the Grey Knights are screened to exclude all but the most resilient psykers. The strongest and purest of these psykers are then trained until they reach a level of mastery that equals the powers of Librarians of the Adeptus Astartes. Those who distinguish themselves in battle may be elevated to the honoured position of the Grey Knights 1st Company and take to the field of battle in modified Tactical Dreadnought armour, more commonly known as Terminator armour, with bolt weaponry incorporated into the gauntlets. The Librarians of the Grey Knights are taught to combine their abilities in a gestalt power that far exceeds anything they could achieve alone. The Grey Knights fight in baroque, heavily ornamented suits of armour with the Chapter's symbol, a sword through a tome, prominently displayed. They fight with the finest equipment and weapons the Imperium can manufacture, mighty sigil-encrusted swords and halberds. These warriors alone can stand before the might of a Greater Daemon with any hope of banishing it back to the Immaterium from whence it came.
The millennia the Grey Knights have spent in battle against the forces of darkness has furnished them with blasphemous knowledge, painstakingly pieced together by the Inquisitors of the Ordo Malleus. This damned collection of knowledge is gathered together on Titan in the Librarium Daemonica, a gloomy repository of ancient tomes, crumbling parchments and data crystals that groans under the weight of the psychic evil that dwells within its walls. This is one of the most heavily guarded locations in the Imperium, and the threat of such knowledge falling into the wrong hands is taken very seriously by the Grey Knights. Each warrior of the Grey Knights carries a copy of the sacred Liber Daemonica, the holy battle rites of the Chapter, in a ceramite case on his breastplate and it is this which symbolises a Grey Knight's most potent weapon; an unshakeable faith in the Divine Emperor. The book contains the essential tenets of lore culled from the Librarium Daemonica by psychically monitored servitors. These servitors are permanently wired to toxin dispensers that can be activated immediately should some daemonic entity attempt to force a passage into real space through the servitor's brain.
The threat of Chaos permeates the entire galaxy and while the Chapter maintains a fortress-monastery on Titan, much of its strength is scattered across the Imperium. Guided by the finest Navigators of the Navis Nobilite and conveyed by the fastest ships produced by the Adeptus Mechanicus, the Grey Knights stand ready to meet the foul minions of Chaos wherever they may strike. Typically, the warriors of these forces have trained together for their entire lives and the bonds of loyalty and honour that bind them are stronger than adamantium. Every Grey Knight is ready to lay down his life to ensure the safety of the Imperium and should that sacrifice be necessary, it is the fervent wish of all those who fall to be transported back to Titan and buried in the hallowed crypts beneath their fortress. A great basalt wall in the heart of the monastery is carved with the names of all those who have fallen in defiance of evil and, though no one outside the Chapter will ever know of their bravery, some of the Imperium's greatest heroes lie buried on Titan.