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1st Black Crusade

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Black Crusades of Abaddon the Despoiler 1st - 2nd - 3rd - 4th - 5th - 6th - 7th - 8th - 9th - 10th - 11th - 12th - 13th
1st Black Crusade
Conflict Long War
Date 781.M31
Location Segmentum Obscurus
Outcome Imperial pyrrhic victory
Combatants
Imperium Chaos Space Marines
Commanders
Sigismund (MIA) Abaddon the Despoiler
Zagthean
Strength
Unknown Unknown
Losses/Survivors
heavy unknown

The First Black Crusade, also known as the First Battle of Cadia began in 781.M31 and was to be the first in a long line of attacks by the forces of Chaos from within the Eye of Terror[1], at the end of which Abaddon the Despoiler claimed the daemon sword Drach'nyen.[2]

"And the Fallen will band together, And herald one among them King".[5]

Overview

The attack, like most others, was led by Abaddon the Despoiler at the head of various traitor Chaos Space Marine legions. Through alliance, threats and promises, Abaddon was able to muster the largest force of Traitor Legions seen since the Heresy and took the Imperium by surprise.[2] Meanwhile, the Imperium at this time had yet to build the vast defences on Cadia and the naval port of Belis Corona, and the invasion stormed across thousands of worlds in a mighty push to force the Emperor to bow before the forces of Chaos. Worlds close to the Eye of Terror fell into mayhem and chaos as Legions descended from the sky and Daemons tore their way into reality. On the Agri-World of Valesia, Zagthean the Broken led his warband in a orgy of violence and destruction. For his own dark pleasure, the warlord constructed a vast maze of thorns from the world's blood-rose orchards, blinding his prisoners and loosing them within its twisting tunnels, before hunting them down at his leisure. Not to be undone, Eralak and his company of Raptor's unleashed atrocities on the Hive cities of Melphia which included hanging millions of citizens from gigantic gallows.[2]

The invasion itself was more of a blunt sword action than a wickedly sharp blade, which most of the other Black Crusades would be. It seemed that little could stop the oncoming of Chaos as world after world was burnt. The only bastion that stood firm was the world of Cadia.[2] On the world of Urthwart, Cadian forces aided by the Imperial Fists 4th and 5th Companies defended against a Chaos onslaught led by the first Defilers. After 4 days of vicious combat, the Chaos forces were forced to retreat.[3] While the Imperial forces eventually managed to reclaim lost territory, scores of of their worlds were shattered and the Black Legion had done much to wash away the shame of their defeat in the Heresy and restore their failing morale.[2]

While the forces of Chaos assaulted the galaxy, the Imperium sent forth its warriors, the Imperial Guard, Adeptus Mechanicus and Space Marines (who had only recently split due to the Second Founding)[2], who marched together and pushed Abaddon back. The distance which the Crusade penetrated the Imperium forced the Emperor to respond by building defences on Cadia and a vast naval port at Belis Corona.

During this Black Crusade, Abaddon led his forces to Uralan and then to the Tower of Silence where he laid claim to his great Daemon sword Drach'nyen.[1] Abaddon was finally cornered by the elderly Sigismund, and the two engaged in a duel of uncertain outcomes.[4]

Sources

Uncited