Merir Astelan[1, C. 1] was a Chapter Master in the Dark Angels Legion, and is considered one of the Fallen Angels. He achieved his position before the Dark Angels were joined by their Primarch, Lion El'Jonson.
He was sent to Caliban, along with many of his fellow Dark Angels. He was viewed as a veteran and experienced Marine. He was present when Luther declared Caliban's break-off from the Imperium. After a brief, inner conflict he joined with Luther. He attacked his fellow brother, Israfael, but was quickly dispatched by the psyker.
Astelan found himself on a world called Scappe Delve, whose inhabitants were forced to live in underground shelters due to the hazardous nature of the environment. He quickly became tired of living in the cramped confines of the world, so he left the planet on the ship of the Rogue Trader Trialartes, the Saint Carthen. However, Astelan soon discovered that Trialartes was secretly smuggling weapons to unsavory organizations, and accompanied the smuggler to the mercenary port of Port Imperial. There he met two other Fallen Angels, Methelas and Anovel. The trio proceeded to systematically commandeer weapons systems and armour plating from the other ships in the docks, before turning their newly acquired weapons on the ships they were stolen from as well as Port Imperial itself.
Due to differences in their vision for a Greater Imperium, Astelan left the other Fallen after this event for the small world of Tharsis. The planet was gripped in the middle of a civil war, and Astelan saw his chance to make a difference. He approached Imperial Commander Dax and was immediately put in charge of the Imperial military presence on the planet. Tharsis had been primarily a farming world until Astelan's arrival, after which it was dominated by crime-rife cities and sprawling factories for making the weapons he used to win the war.
After much bloodshed, Astelan delivered what he had promised the Imperial Commander: victory. When he realized that Dax meant to institute leaders from the old noble houses again once the war was finished, Astelan's 'sacred bands' of elite warriors staged another revolution and killed the Imperial Commander, insisting that Astelan take his place. During the final stages of the revolt against the Imperial Commander, one lone space pod got out of the system and placed a distress call. The call was picked up by a Dark Angels ship passing by the sector, who retrieved the survivor and learned the story.
The Dark Angels sent Interrogator-Chaplain Boreas to investigate, who ended up fighting Tharsis' soldier population until Astelan realized who had come to the planet he now ruled. Astelan gave the order to stand down and allowed the Interrogator-Chaplain and his Deathwing retinue into his command bunker, where he was placed under arrest and taken off-world for transport to the Tower of Angels for interrogation.
In the span of fifteen days, Boreas and his Librarian assistant Samiel pried at Astelan's mind with pain, torment, psychic abilities, and questions designed to undermine Astelan's view of the events that occurred, trying to get him to admit his sins and repent. Astelan struggled and survived, explaining much about the past of the Chapter and the old Legion before the Heresy. He explained that it was his order that set Caliban's guns ablaze against Lion El'Jonson's fleet when it returned, and he revealed that it was his voice that was lent to Luther when the Space Marines on Caliban were uncertain that they were being led in the right direction while watching over the planet.
- 1: Angels of Darkness (Novel) by Gav Thorpe
- 2: Call of the Lion (Short Story) by Gav Thorpe
- 3: Fallen Angels by Mike Lee