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 Kabal of the Shadow Mask

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Posts : 3
Join date : 2013-02-07
Location : Brisbane

Kabal of the Shadow Mask Empty
PostSubject: Kabal of the Shadow Mask   Kabal of the Shadow Mask I_icon_minitimeSun Feb 10 2013, 03:50

So I had a few hours free over the weekend and given that I unfortunately can't start assembling my models where I am, I thought I'd come up with some decent fluff and background for my Kabal, as the guys I will playing with already have some ridiculous stuff for their armies.

I'll just say that as I'm not 100% familiar with everything yet so there may be errors in titles etc, please let me know if you see anything glaring. I also really hope I haven't duplicated anyone's names in this stuff Shocked

Anyway, here it is, my new Kabal named the Shadow Mask(s), hope you enjoy it and sorry for the large amount of text Sad

Origins of the Kabal

“We are the veiled blade in the shadows, the silent death awaiting those who foolishly seek our enmity. We shall endure, we shall reclaim our former glory. And we shall visit bloody vengeance upon those who sought to bring ruin to our name!” – Markath Yllthanon

With origins dating back to the first pleasure palaces built in the labyrinth, House Yllthanon was a small but grudgingly respected house during the years after the fall. The house was all but destroyed during the Imperial invasion, with the opening salvos of the astartes fleet levelling the family’s once glorious palace. The surviving members of House Yllthanon were further thinned as the remnants were picked apart by new and emerging kabalite powers. Dracon Markath Yllthanon, distant cousin to the last Lord of House Yllthanon, stemmed the bleeding and formed from the ashes of House Yllthanon what today is known as Kabal of the Shadow Mask. The Kabal consolidated its power over the millennia, swallowing lesser kabals with holdings adjacent to the Shadow Mask’s home in the ruins of Yllthanon’s perch atop High Commorragh, ever ensuring that interest was not generated in those with insurmountable power. While Markath ultimately met his end at the hands of his mistress (and unopposed successor), his legacy continues to this day, with the Shadow Masks careful to ensure that the true strength of the Kabal remains unknown, as information is precious in the dark city.

Under the leadership of the current Archon Wrayan Yllthanon, the Kabal has begun to expand its holdings into several of the key outlying port nodes of Commorragh. These expansions ensured that the spoils of the Kabal’s realspace raids, now occurring with greater frequency over the last millenia, are free of the aggressive sampling of rival Kabals and hellion gangs that speed throughout Commorragh. The Shadow Masks have also taken the unusual step, particularly given their typical modus operandi, of demanding “soul tithes” from the slave bounties of other lesser Kabals, to ensure safe passage through the domain of the Shadow Masks. Such a demand would usually end in bloodshed if not backed up with overwhelming martial strength and social position, particularly for traditionally less notable bloodlines such as the house of Yllthanon. As such, pacts needed to be made to ensure the continuing prosperity of the kabal.

Allies of the Kabal

“Yes yes, see here Xigua, note the vocal pitch change of the subject’s screaming is now equal to the change in phase of this implement’s electric signal. Think of the possibilities! I can now tune and play one of the lesser kind’s Autarchs! Such sweet bliss. Now…where did I put my drill?”- Chief Haemonculus Ravanel of the Shadow Mask, chatting to a wrack about the finer details of musical Autarchs

Like all of Dark Eldar society, the Kabal of the Shadow Mask employs the services of several haemonculi. Chief amongst these is the haemonculus known only as Ravanel who, even by haemonculi standards, is insane. Dutifully serving the Kabal for the last three millennia, Ravanel has become increasingly obsessed with “pain instruments”, seeking to create elaborate musical instruments which focus and control the screams of its victims. Ravanel dreams of one day creating an entire symphony comprised of such machines, playing concertos for the enjoyment of his lord and allies.

While Archon Yllthanon loathes risking valuable tools, Ravanel is known to accompany realspace raids in search of increasing bizarre prizes, such as hormagaunt toes for his living skeletal piano, and the left eyeballs of Imperial commissars. Given the dangerous nature of such ventures, Ravanel is always accompanied by a healthy assembly of wracks and grotesques.

“Let him keep his shadows and his inadequate scheming Moire,I shall revel in the glory of the arena, the sweet symphony of battle and the cries of the fallen” – Xana Lythril, bemoaning the tactics of the Shadow Masks to her Dracite Moire Xe’naddan

While the Kabal of the Shadow Mask is obsessed with the protection of information, it is inevitable that denizens of the dark city would begin to learn of the new power rising in the port nodes and their great successes in realspace. As such, many sought to use the Kabal for their own ends. First among these was Archite Xana Lythril of the Crimson Dawn wych cult, which has long looked upon the Cult of Strife with envious eyes. Seeing an opportunity to secure access to a reliable stream of souls and monstrous beasts, Xana approached Wrayan with an offer of tentative cooperation. A deal was struck with the terms unknown save to those two, with the contract written and signed in the back of a screaming tau ethereal, who now stands frozen in constant horror in the Kabal’s throne room, a living symbol of the pact sworn between the two parties

Both sides have since benefitted greatly from the arrangement. The Crimson Dawn can now choose the best and most promising slaves for their arenas and have since risen greatly in prestige and fame. The Kabal of the Shadow Mask now has close and, more importantly, public ties to a major wych cult of Commorragh. Few would seek to strike even covertly against those with close ties to a wych Cult, as all know the importance that the brides of death and their spectacles hold in dark eldar society. As such the Shadow Masks have enjoyed a period of relative security (if such a thing is possible in the dark city), with those who rail against the soul tithe quickly silenced and subsumed into the Shadow Mask Kabal. Only the Kabal of the Whispering Void stood strong in open hostility to the Shadow Masks, with veiled strikes played out nightly across Commorragh for many years, as the forces of both sides clashed in bloody skirmishes. Ultimately Archon Garanthil of the Whispering Void met his end on the floor of his throne room, his head sheared from body by the blade of Archon Yllthanon. Those of the Whispering Void who remained with appendages attached either joined the Shadow Masks, or enjoyed a long and protracted end.

“She is a tempestuous beast is she not, Karlax?”
“I was not aware the carnifex was a she, Archon”
“I meant Xana you fool!” – Archon Yllthanon, conversing with his Incubus while perusing the latest beasts taken from realspace

The leaders of the joint forces of the Shadow Masks and Crimson Dawn could not be more dissimilar. Archon Wrayan Yllthanon is cold and calculating, preferring intelligence and plots over raw showings of power, ever mindful of the repercussions of his actions and the strength of his enemies. Forever obsessed with information, from the inner workings and rivalries of an enemy Kabal’s court to the preferred fetishes of a promising Sybarite, the Shadow Masks boast one of the most intricate and far reaching spy networks in Commorragh…though few know it. Xana Lythril conversely is brazen and rash, keen to revel in the joys of battle whenever possible. For this reason, Xana is quite often seen leading raids into realspace from the front lines, where she can more easily secure prize pickings for the arena. Given that Archon Yllthanon is one of the few beings that Xana will heed the counsel of and Wrayan’s dislike of losing resources unnecessarily, both leaders are often seen leading their joint forces into realspace together, often fighting back to back and revelling in the suffering they inflict.

Over the last millennia the alliance between the Crimson Dawn and the Shadow Mask has grown from a mere pact of convenience to one of mutual respect and comraderie. For both Xana and Wrayan know that their fates are now intertwined, as all who rise in Commorragh will soon face the machinations of the tyrant Vect and his allies.

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