The Order of Bloody Tears is an Orders Militant of the Adepta Sororitas that is currently active across Demi-Segmentum Obscurus-3b. As an Orders Militant the Order of Bloody Tears is a potent military power and ferociously faithful to the Imperial Creed, and they do the bidding of the Ecclesiarchy as they fight for the glory of the Emperor.
The Order was founded on Gudrun in Sector Scarus circa 700.M39 as an offshoot of the Order of Our Martyred Lady. The name of the Order was chosen to symbolise the bloody tears that are shed by those who fight for the Imperium.
The Order of Bloody Tears' guiding philosophy - the Thought of Gudrun - was the concept that the best way the Sisters of Battle can serve the Emperor was not by killing his enemies but by helping & protecting those who serve and believe in him. This philosophy leads many Sisters of the Order to transfer into the Orders Hospitaller or Orders Sabine at some point during their careers.
The Order of Bloody Tears very soon grew and gained prominence as Sector Governors who were interested in increasing Imperial influence on frontier worlds welcomed the Order with open arms, funding their Convents and allowing the Order to spread throughout nearby Sectors. Local populations also loved the Order because it fought local warlords, mutants and heretics, while establishing schools, hospitals and temples to the Emperor.
However those elements of the Order that spread closer and closer to the Halo Stars found the Thought of Gudrun becoming ever harder to follow due to the ever increasing xeno attacks, marauders, Chaos worshippers and other dangers.
The hardest hit that Order suffered came in 218.M41, when the Orders headquarters on Gudrun were destroyed in a suicidal heretic attack. After this event the Order was thrown into disarray and they are still trying to reestablish a clear chain of command. The real reasons behind the seemingly random attack on their Convent Primus only became clear two decades later - in 241.M41 - when the local Noble dynasty of House Glaw was found to be pervaded by a Chaos cult and therefore implicated as the masterminds of the attack.
The Order of Bloody Tears is distributed across Segmentum Obscuras, though the vast majority of their forces operate within Demi-Segmentum Obscuras-3b. Some of the Sectors in which the Order operates are outlined below:
- Sector Scarus - The home sector of the Order, they maintain a massive presence here along with the Orders high command, which is located in the Convent of Bloody Tears on Gudrun.
- Sector Morrux - The Order maintains a full Preceptory of several thousand Sisters in this major Sector.
- Sector Deus - A frontier Sector with a high conflict potential, the Order maintains a full Preceptory here as well. Some of its Sisters are also located in the nearby small Sectors of Paxia and Corgus.
- Sector Idaces - The Order maintains a Commandery in this bustling Sector to protect Ecclesiastic interests.
- Sector Brachau - The Orders Militant are never ones to sit out a Crusade and the Brachau Crusade is no exception. Five Commanderies are currently engaged in the Brachau Crusade, with the Order strongly considering increasing this to a full Preceptory.
- Sector Mandragora - Unknown presence.
- Sector Tagerantes - Unknown presence.
Like all Adepta Sororitas, the Order of Bloody Tears selects its recruits from all the Schola Progenia of Sector Deus. Only the most devout female Progena will be recommended by their Drill Abbots/Abbesses for Sororitas service and - if accepted - only the few able to meet the rigorous physical demands of the Orders Militant will be inducted into the Order of Bloody Tears. The remainder are sent to one of the other Orders as their aptitudes dictate.
Once selected from the Schola Progenium, these teenage girls ascend to the rank of Sister Novicate and will conduct several years of further study at one of the Orders' convents. Sister Novicates of the Order of Bloody Tears undertake a long course of advanced combat training and instruction in how to use the full armoury of equipment employed by the Orders Militant. Sister Novicates may also be deployed to real but low-intensity combat situations, clad in carapace armour.
After her long period of advanced training a Sister Novicate will ascend to full Sister in a grand ceremony overseen by her Canoness. In this hallowed tradition she will be presented with her own suit of Sororitas Power Armour and truly join the Sisterhood.
Equipment and OrganisationEdit
The Sisters of Battle are famous for being universally equipped with Sororitas Power Armour, a unique pattern of power armour that includes some of the most extensive systems seen outside the Adeptus Astartes.
Standard Battle Sisters Squads are equipped with the Godwyn-De'az pattern boltgun and bolt pistol as standard issue weapons. They also make heavy use of flamers and meltaguns as unit weapons, these weapons seen as righteous due to the cleansing heat they send forth. Chainswords and chainbayonets are also a common sight amongst line sisters, the righteous women unafraid to tear apart their foes in close combat.
Battle Sisters with an affinity for heavy weapons are formed into Retributor Squads, and make use of heavy bolters, heavy flamers, and multi-meltas. Their power armour allows them to wield heavy weapons by themselves, allowing a small number of Sisters to lay down baleful firepower.
Even amongst the fiery Sororitas some Battle Sisters are noted as possessing heightened aggression and eagerness to join battle. These Sisters are formed into Dominion Squads and are equipped with flamers, meltaguns, and storm bolters along with close combat weapons like chainswords and power mauls. Dominion Squads are shock troops that smash into enemy battle lines to break them apart, and they suffer high attrition rates while dealing tremendous damage.
Experienced Battle Sisters that have shown preternatural level of agility and precision in battle are inducted into Seraphim Squads. Equipped with sleek jump packs and equipped with a pair of bolt pistols, these angelic avengers soar across the battlefield with a grace quite unexpected of power armoured forms. Their dual pistols spit death at the enemy as they ambush and evade their foes, and many Seraphim instead wield dual hand flamers or dual inferno pistols for extreme firepower in a small package.
Battle Sisters that are both skilled in battle and have shown such intense strength of faith that it stands out even amongst the lofty standards of the Adepta Sororitas are inducted into Celestian Squads. Considered the most determined and unbreakable squads in a Battle Sister force, Celestians will hold their ground against any foe imaginable no matter how horrifying or daemonic they may be. Celestians are mostly equipped with bolters and storm bolters along with powerful close combat weapons such as power axes and power mauls, and carry powerful religious portents that shield their souls (and sometimes their physical forms as well). They also make heavy use of flamers and heavy flamers, often loaded with sanctified promethium to eradicate the tainted.
Sisters that have failed grossly in their duties - either operationally or spiritually - are inducted into the Sisters Repentia. Effectively a death sentence, Sisters Repentia take to the field wearing scraps of parchment and wielding enormous eviscerators, seeking absolution in combat & death against the Emperor's foes. Very rarely a Sister Repentia may survive her penance and be judged redeemed, and these returned Sororitas are held in extremely high esteem by their Sisters. Such is their fanatical faith that occasionally Sisters may even volunteer themselves for the Sisters Repentia due to self-perceived guilt and shame, be it deserved or not. Sororitas of any of the Orders may be inducted into the Sisters Repentia, but the majority originate from the Orders Militant as these Sisters are exposed to a much greater chance of extreme failure in their operations. The Order of Bloody Tears has a fairly standard rate of Sister Repentia induction, their humanitarian philosophy resulting in fewer incidents of gross operational failure but a higher prevalence of self-guilt in Sisters that failed to protect their charges.
As a part of the Ecclesiarchy the Sisters of Battle also have access to Arco-Flagellants, condemned heretics that have been augmented into electro-flail armed cyborgs and shacked to psycho-inducers that fill them with bloodlust and hatred for the enemies of the God-Emperor.
The Sisters of Battle make use of an armoury of vehicles to wage their wars, mostly focused around infantry support as their tactics are generally optimised for urban combat - as this is where the majority of religious purging is undertaking.
The Sisters of Battle use a variant of Rhino as their primary personnel carrier, allowing them to move through cities and across open terrain swiftly. Like the Adeptus Arbites they use the Repressor as a more heavily armed carrier when moving through hostile urban environments.
The Sisters of Battle use the unique Immolator as an infantry fighting vehicle, this rhino-based tank capable of transporting a squad of Sisters then supporting them with twinlinked heavy flamers, heavy bolters, or multi-meltas. The Sisters' anti-armour support comes in the form of the Exorcist, an archaic rhino-chassis tank equipped with a powerful missile launcher that fires warheads in a high arc to strike armoured vehicles in the weaker top armour.
Finally as a part of the Ecclesiarchy the Sisters of Battle have access to Penitent Engines. These large walkers are armed with massive blades and flamers, and are piloted by condemned heretics who are suspended from the frame's chassis and completely exposed to enemy fire. Kept alive by archaic life support systems even as they are torn apart, Penitent Engine pilots are doomed to die as they are fed a constant stream of psychosis-inducing drugs and sweep through the enemies of the God-Emperor in a desperate attempt to earn redemption. While Arco-Flagellants are condemned heretics from all stratas of society, Penitent Engines are typically reserved for heretics from official Imperial Adeptuses like the Administratum or even the Ecclesiarchy itself.
Notable Sisters of the Order of Bloody TearsEdit
- Canoness Superior Helena Maraeu - The head of the entire Order. Maraeu spends most of her time in the Convent of Bloody Tears on Gudrun, the headquarters of her order. She is an incredibly experienced Battle Sister and a significant religious authority in the region.
Notable Canoness PreceptorsEdit
- Canoness Preceptor Amelia Engel - Commander of the Order's Preceptory in Sector Deus. Engel is a young but highly skilled Battle Sister who has risen swiftly through the ranks.
The Order in Sector DeusEdit
A full Preceptory of the Order is in Sector Deus, consisting of several thousand Battle Sister and hundreds of armoured vehicles. They also control a number of voidships, ostensibly only for transportation, but most are heavily armed.
Sisters of the Order of Bloody Tears can be found on almost all worlds in Sector Deus. Though they will usually be singular squads posted at the planet's main Cathedral and/or Drill Abbesses at the Schola Progenia.
These are significant strongpoints of the Ecclesiarchy in Sector Deus, and each will house at least a Commandery of Battle Sisters.
- Convent of Saint Evangelion - The headquarters of the Order in Sector Deus and located beside the Cathedral of Saint Evangelion on Tachion Primaris. Guarded by their finest Celestians and personally commanded by Canoness Preceptor Engel, this is one of the most secure locations in the Sector.
- Kestonia Convent - Located in the capital of Astrobel, as a world of extreme value to the Iron Monks, they have assigned far more Sororitas to its defence than truly necessary. This Fortress-Convent is well equipped & well defended, and is right next to the planet's Cathedral & administrative centre.
- Saint Luripedes' Redoubt - An ancient Shrine World and important symbol of the Imperium's dominance, Adamant Prime has a rich history in both faith and military. This Cathedral was built around the ruins of a church dating back to M32 and the Sisters in the adjacent Fortress-Convent zealously guard the ancient holy relics within - including the preserved skeleton of the Convent's namesake. Saint Luripedes earned his status in M34 when he led the defence of Subsector Adamantis against one of the largest xenos armies ever to arrive from the galactic rim.
- Church of His Eternal Will - Located in Karrus, Malta, this perpetually war-torn world needs to maintain its citizens' faith if it is to survive. The Cathedral-Fortress is located in the capital city of Karrus, and serves as both a place of worship for the common citizen and an impregnable stronghold for the many Sisters of Battle that guard it. Many times have the Sisters of Karrus repelled daemonic horrors that could not be faced by those of lesser faith.
- Sarrasima Convent - Located on Attero, this Prison-Convent holds those who have been imprisoned on command of the Ecclesiarchy. Therefore there are a large number of Battle Sisters here to guard the dangerous inmates. It is also home to most the local Orders' Sisters Repentia - Sororitas who have sinned or otherwise failed so extremely that only penitent service can offer them redemption. It is also home to many dangerous Arco-Flagellants and empty Penitent Engines, to be filled when required with priests that have been found guilty of heresy.
Other Orders in Sector DeusEdit
Elements from a number of non-Militant Orders are also found throughout Sector Deus but they all operate on a more fractured and decentralised basis than the Order of Bloody Tears. As such the Order of Bloody Tears has the highest ranked Sororitas in the Sector and as an Orders Militant is seen as more senior by nature.
Therefore the elements of these Orders in Sector Deus accede authority to the Order of Bloody Tears, following commands laid down by the Orders Militant's Canonesses and often reporting through their channels. Some of the other Orders that have elements in Sector Deus are outlined here:
- Order of the Guarded Soul - Most planetary Hospitallers in Sector Deus hail from this Order.
- Order of Fiery Devotion - An Order known for its fearless Hospitallers, often assigned to combat medic duties.
- Order of the Steadfast Knife - A small Order with only a token presence in Deus, they have a dark reputation for interrogation skills
- Order of Our Eternal Rites - This massive Order dominates the Demi-Segmentum's Sisters Famulous.
- Order of the Diligent Tongue - An Order with a large presence in Deus, their lauded linguistic skills are invaluable to a frontier sector.
- Order of Silent Truth - An Order known for their skills with handling Daemonic texts. Favoured by the Inquisition and commonly seen on Nobis.
Notable Sororitas in Sector DeusEdit
Order of Bloody TearsEdit
- Canoness Preceptor Amelia Engel - Head of the Order's Preceptory in Sectors Deus, Paxia & Corgus.
- Canoness Commander Ardentia - Commander of the Sarrasima Prison-Convent on Attero.
- Palatine Serpentina - Second-in-command and Chief Interrogator of the Sarrasima Prison-Convent
- Celestian Superior Agatha - Experienced, highly skilled warrior and one of Canoness Engel's personal guard.
- Sister Jessira (Privateer Quest) - Retired from active duty.
- Sister Almudena - Delivered to the world of Serentus in Sector Corgus by the CEF, she serves the world's growing contingent of Battle Sisters.
- Sister Hospitaller Aelia - Delivered to the world of Serentus in Sector Corgus by the CEF, she has chosen to continue her work upon the world.
- Sister Hospitaller Judith - A young Sister from the Order of Fiery Devotion. Judith went MIA on Lituanica in 324.M41.
- Sister Sabine Superior Athenia - A Orders Sabine Sororitas in Sector Corgus, Athenia and her squad of Sisters Sabine have joined the CEF in order to reach new worlds.
- Sister Heidra - Sister of the Order of Bloody Tears. Killed in action on Lituanica in 324.M41
- Sister Astia - Sister of the Order of Bloody Tears. Killed in action on Lituanica in 324.M41
- Sister Superior Ath Laurent (Privateer Quest) - Sister of the Order of Bloody Tears.
Liason to Folkvangr's Governor, in compliance with pledge made to Alexander Kerr.Trasfered to guard a connected Ministorum Chaplain upon the Cetaceus-Class Transport Serf's Glory. Slain during the ambush of the Vitalitas 1st's Lord General upon Le Keers in 342.M41. Her remains were never recovered.
Recent History and Encounters with the Ghosts of RetributionEdit
In 322.M41 the Ghosts of Retribution forced the Order to hand over Magos Fram, a prisoner they had taken on the order of the Iron Monks, by mustering vastly superior forces at the gates of their Covenant on Attero. The Order was highly disgruntled at this and took the Chapter to Imperial Court for their actions.
Only a year later in 323.M41, the Order was commanded to attack an Nestorian Learner transport ship by the Iron Monks. Unfortunately for the Sisters the transport was being escorted by Space Marines of the Ghosts of Retribution, and when the Marines refused to comply with their demands to hand over the Techpriests the Sisters opened fire with their ship's cannons. Their attack was a disaster and Space Marines boarded their vessel, demanding they surrender. It was not until 413 Sisters had fallen (in exchange for a mere 6 Space Marines) that they gave in. Fortunately Captain Brethorius had mercy upon the survivors and set them free - but not before confiscating several vehicles as recompense, including a mighty Land Raider. This unfortunate event would intensely sour relations between the two organisations for decades to come.
In the wake of the Invasion of Mormark the planet was too polluted to feed itself, and with the destruction of Prothera just a few months later famine was soon hitting the population. Chapter Master requested that the Order supply food and aid to the stricken world. Though Cannoness Engel's hatred toward the Ghosts of Retribution and their Chapter Master was more intense than ever following their failure to protect her homeworld, the humanitarian nature of her Order shone through and Engel put aside her personal feelings for the good of the Mormarkian people. For two years transport ships under the command of the order airdropped in supplies where they were needed.
In 340.M41 after the Betrayal at Varda, the Order provided aid to the remaining Vardan population in return for a modest donation to their coffers. The Hospitallers and healing priests that helped the Vardan people did much to assuage the seething hatred they had for the Ecclesiarchy, though not their disdain for the Iron Monks in particular. The Order also took in hundreds of Vardan orphans who had lost their families to the atrocity.
In 359.M41 the Order of Bloody Tears was a part of the forces that enacted the Coup against Larion Ursus, overthrowing the corrupt Sector Governor and reinstalling the Belisarian Dynasty to the Sector throne. The Order's main assistance during the coup came in the form of suppressing civilian dissent and ensuring the Ecclesiarchy remained stable during the transition. They also successfully halted a Freyan Armoured Regiment that was attempting to spread word of the coup to the Imperial Guard as it was happening.