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Post by Admin on Wed Jul 29, 2015 2:44 pm


Music: Killzone 2 OST, “Birth of War”

Remember the Martyrdom of the Lady.
This Great Hammer was Forged in Her Honor
To Carry Her Across the Stars.

These words are inscribed upon the junction of a set of corridors on the 4th deck of the Malleus Dominae, in reality the first piece of metal laid down to build the cruiser. The architect who first commissioned and led the construction of the Malleus Dominae is known only in the account he gives of a battle on an unnamed world in the Eastern Fringe, long since lost to Hive Fleet Kraken. He speaks of a planetary uprising and a desperate defense to buy time for the evacuation of its sole manufactorum. After the gates were breached and all the defenders slaughtered, a slender slip of a girl, her name also left to mystery, miraculously strode forth and protected the thousands of tech-priests and engineers single-handedly, fighting off hordes of traitors with 'the fire of her eyes' and a mighty thunder hammer she shouldn't have even been able to lift. Her martyrdom allowed the evacuation of hundreds of key staff to the safety of the liberation fleet above.

More important than any number of human lives, however, was a rescue of an STC fragment from the manufactorum. The schematic detailed components and programs for a superior, multilevel hangar bay on a Lunar Class cruiser that could occupy the prow of the ship, launching from below. This maximized space without compromising the power required for mass-driver batteries and lances. These modifications made the so-called “Lucius Variant” more powerful than the Dictator Class cruiser, which sacrifices its lance decks for launch bays on its less armored sides.

There understandably was a great deal of controversy surrounding the fabrication of the Malleus Dominae for this unorthodox design. Despite disapproval and suspicion between various factions within the Priesthood of Mars and the Imperial Navy, a matter riddled with inquiries, adjudications and even a number of duels involving [redacted], the Lunar left her moorings and fired her plasma drives for the first time in 982.M40. With the foundries of Mars mired in debate, no other variants of its type were ever built, making the Dominae one of a kind.

It has since been postulated that the Architect spoke not of one ‘girl’ but of a mission of Adeptus Sororitas. Despite the credibility of the legend’s claim, it persists and is taken as a sign of the God-Emperor’s direct intervention, ultimately affording the Malleus Dominae’s construction a divine mandate from the Ecclesiarchy.
-Chronicler Agustus Keppler

Immediately deployed to suppress piracy in the Cython Subsector, despite loudly voiced doubt and distress about the Dominae’s 'unorthodoxy', the Lunar proved notably successful in repeated engagements.

Ironically, the Malleus Dominae became pointedly valuable to the tech-priests aboard since her hangars were stocked with not only Starhawks and Furies, but also Shark assault boats, allowing her to swiftly salvage a number of stolen ships that would have otherwise been simply annihilated. In battle, enemy forces were often taken by surprise by her launch capabilities, pounded by the Dominae’s guns before overwhelmed by her attack craft. Boarding actions became so successful that the Lunar was retrofitted to carry an entire regiment of Imperial Guard for orbital and planetary engagements. She would, in time, become known as one of the most versatile ships in any battlegroup.

Her second captain, a charismatic, brilliant torch of a man hailing from Mars itself, Captain Joachim of House Strandt, brought even further controversy to the successful warship. Having shucked a family tradition and a possibly illustrious career as a general in the Imperial Guard, he insisted on taking on an officership in the navy, well versed nonetheless in the ways of training men for combat. A staff of handpicked individuals instilled great pride in the crew as members of the only ship of her kind, establishing family lines of engineers, gunners, adepts, cogitator specialists and marines. Counting themselves as some of the fiercest fighters in the battlefleet, the Malleus Dominae's force of formidable warriors are boarding and close-combat specialists who have liberated countless vessels from traitorous hands and planted the seeds of destruction in many others.

It was during the Gothic War that the Malleus Dominae earned her scars. Originally attached to Battlefleet Gothic to investigate the loss of a number of imperial cruisers later discovered to be victims of the infamous Plagueclaw, she became involved in countless engagements against the forces of Chaos during the Gothic War. The crew named Baqal's Asphyxiation, the Jormugandrid, and the Litany of Typhoid as its three rivals, doggedly pursuing and battling these cruisers in each engagement until they had destroyed them all. The Malleus Dominae emerged surprisingly unscathed from every fight it entered with its battlegroup despite its position in the vanguard, crack fighter pilots making a mockery of bombers and other small vessels while assault boats filled with incredibly brave, disciplined armored troops disabled and destroyed frigates from within with melta charges and expert precision.

The first five years of the war progressed smoothly but in the last years of the conflict she was boarded by screaming, twisted heretics and vile monsters that crawled along the ceilings and walls, exacting a heavy toll. By the end of the Gothic War the Malleus Dominae had lost three commanders, a good 47% of her original crew's bloodlines, and was so badly damaged that she would require years of repairs.

A fresh crew, a sealed superstructure, and the addition of reinforced hull plating that gleamed brightly against the cold light of the stars, the Malleus Dominae was launched to rejoin Battlefleet Solar as part of the illustrious battlegroup of the same name. Decades of routine patrol interrupted only by periodic battles with increasing numbers of Ork pirates finally culminated in a ten-year-long war against one Warboss Skullblasta.

The turning point of the conflict was at the famous Battle of Omicron, where the growing Waaagh! was stopped in its tracks. With assistance from such ships as the Saint Drusus, the Luna Invicta, and the Blessed Proclamation, the notorious Ork kill krooza Skypuncha and the terror ship Naily-Butcha were destroyed along with a cluster of roks, vaporized in a flash of nuclear fire from super-heavy Imperial ordinance.

It was soon after Omicron that the Malleus Dominae was reordered into the current Sigma Una detachment it serves with today, flying alongside Lord Isidros, Mount Ararat, and the now destroyed Righteous Fury and Hastrimanthus as they delivered legions of guardsmen to reclaim the Ophidian Subsector.

The Purge Campaign saw the Malleus Dominae play an especially important role as her Sharks delivered experienced veterans to board heretic frigates while she guarded the flanks of larger vessels engaged in planetary bombardment. The campaign was a success, her crew marked with achievement and honor, it was no surprise that the Malleus Dominae and her battlegroup were mustered to serve in the great Macharian Crusade. Present at the contact of the advanced hive world of Persepolis, which had been lost to the Imperium for 5,000 years, she continued onward to serve in the Lord Solar's conquests beyond the Astronomican, fighting all the way to the end and accompanying Macharius back. The crew members of the Malleus Dominae were honored for their service by being allowed to nominate one member from each of their families to take the holy pilgrimage to Terra aboard the Prince of Orion.

The Malleus Dominae returned to resume patrol for the next three centuries, seeing little engagement until the last, extremely chaotic and deadly fifty or so years.

The 2nd and 3rd Wars for Armageddon saw the Malleus Dominae heavily engaged in fighting Orks, her crew gaining a foul hatred for Greenskins as they found their ship being invaded more often than not by Orkish boarders, a tactic they were unused to. It was a brutal conflict, and the Dominae was nearly destroyed by a pair of terror ships but for the timely intervention of Mount Ararat's Nova cannon. Once again subjected to years of repair, the Malleus Dominae has only been released back into service in the last decade or so, but her spirit is unflagging and her crew unwavering.

Emperor guide her guns.


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