The Warhammer 40K Stories of Danté Ombraspada

I have long been a fan of Warhammer 40,000, and a couple of years ago I wrote a collection of short stories based around my custom Space Marine Chapter, the Dragon Knights. I'm putting them on here because I kind of want people to have a read.

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3. The Dragon Knights Templar

The Chapter
The Dragon Knights Templar is truly part of the Dragon Knights chapter (hence their name).
However, they are classed as a separate Chapter by Terra. This is mainly due to their different doctrines.
However, they do share core similarities with the Dragon Knights. They use cloning methods, focus on Flamer and Melta weapons, and revere both the Emperor and Calidus Draco.
The Dragon Knights Templar was established after a large Daemon Incursion in the systems surrounding Vulcanus. Arminus Setrus Draco had given the role of Grand Master to his most trusted Honour Guard, and had ceased all military activity whilst numbers for both Chapters were replenished and assigned.
Draco did not give them a large number of Terminator Armour, so these pieces were given only to the Grand Master’s immediate guard, the “Hospitallers”.
The Templars have more men than the Dragon Knights, though as every man amongst the Templars is, technically, a Dragon Knight, this is not noticeable.
The Dragon Knights Templar does not have Companies, but instead have 10 Orders, each with five hundred men (excluding the Marshal and his Command).
There is then the “11th Order”, which is where the Grand Master and his most trusted soldiers are.

The Orders
The Orders are fairly easy to differentiate, provided the men have taken minimal damage to their right knees, as this is where the “Order Designation” is located.
It is a simple number between 1 and 10, designating their Order.
There is no specialty to any Order, or hierarchy between them (though there is within).
There are no colour differences in the Chapter on the armour or tabards, though every soldier has their order number tattooed on their shoulders, chest, knees and neck.
Those in the “11th Order”, the Grand Master’s Command, still bear the number of their old Order, but are given a second tattoo below each number on their body. This second tattoo is a red cross.
It is the highest honour a Dragon Knights Templar can attain.

Each Order has five hundred men, not including the Marshal and his Command. Two hundred Squires, one hundred and fifty Knights, one hundred Crusaders and fifty Blademasters.
This makes every Order the same size as a five normal Space Marine Companies.

Homeworld
In effect, the Dragon Knights Templar has two homes. One is Vulcanus itself. As the Homeworld of the Dragon Knights Chapter, the Templars are always welcome there (which was fortunate when their Crusade Fleet was severely damaged once).
The second is their Crusade Fleet. There are 11 ships in total, one for each Order. Ironically, whilst the 11th order is the smallest, they have the biggest ship.
Fortunately, this makes it a less appeasing target.

Grand Master
The Grand Master of the Dragon Knights Templar is Antonius Rex, and was the most suitable member of Arminus Setrus Draco’s Honour Guard to be given the role of Grand Master.
He is a skilled fighter and tactician, as knows not to waste his troops.
He bears a distinctive tattoo on his forehead. It is that of the Imperial Aquila, with the red cross of the Dragon Knights Templar behind it.
He has proven to be a good choice, wiping out at least fifty heretic colonies in the short time the Chapter has existed.

Tactics
The aim of the Dragon Knights Templar is to destroy heretic colonies. This means they must be well suited to fighting in cramped conditions, or facing Daemons.
As a result, they usually attack in full force.
However, there is a pattern to these seemingly unplanned attacks.
The Squires are always at the forefront of the attack, with the Knights behind them, the Crusaders behind them, then the Blademasters, and then the Marshal and Under-Marshals.
The ranks then merge, leading to everyone getting into combat.
The final kill is always reserved for the Marshal.

When all of the Orders appear on the same battlefield with the same mission, it is a rare and spectacular sight.
They will unite, and attack in the same form as above.
The final kill is also spectacular to watch.
The Grand Master and all the Marshals share the kill, each firing at the final target at the same time.

Scouts
The Dragon Knights Templar has two hundred and fifty scouts in each Order. However, these scouts never take part in battles. They do exactly as their name says. They scout the area, and return to the ship with their report.
Occasionally they are sent on dangerous missions to kill the leader of a cult, or wipe out a small group of heretics. Those who perform best are put in the “Initiation Queue”, ready to become Squires.

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