Order of Our Martyred Lady
|Name:||Order of Our Martyred Lady|
|Convent:||Convent Sanctorum (Ophelia VII)[1a]|
|Colours:||Original: Black armour, black cloaks, red linings and weapons[1c]
Current: Black armour with dark red cloaks[2b]
The Order is based in the Convent Sanctorum on Ophelia VII[1a]. The order was originally called the Order of the Fiery Heart and was founded by order of the Ecclesiarch Alexis XXII when the Convent Sanctorum was split.[1b] Their first leader and Patron Saint was Canoness Katherine, who led her order for many decades before being murdered by the Witch-cult of Mnestteus. So moved by her death were her Sisters that they changed the orders name to the Order of Our Martyred Lady in her honour.[2a] The Order wore the black of mourning for their lost lady for many centuries afterward, a style consisting of black armor and black cloaks with red lining, with red used for weaponry and white used for unit insignia and piping around the cloaks.[1c] After the Order's losses on Armageddon, the majority of the Preceptories changed the cloth color to all red, with the first line of the Fede Imperialis stitched between parallel lines of silver along the bottom edge to remind them of the martyring of their Sisters on Armageddon.[2b]
The Order has determination beyond even their fellow Sisters of the other orders, forever driven to avenge the death of Katherine and their Sisters who fall in battle. To their enemies, they are not known for mercy, but instead for thorough and utter destructiveness.
Though records are incomplete, it is believed that the Order of Our Martyred Lady was the force that invaded the Saint Garrat Scriptorum at the order of Inquisitor Tannenburg and brought hundreds of Adeptus Terra scribes to Nemesis Tessera excruciation chambers before razing the scriptorum with fire. Complaints lodged were quickly withdrawn when Tannenburg produced the scribes, dead, in specimen jars with their mutations laid bare and easily apparent.[2c]
The order operated a convent on Sanctuary, known as Sanctuary 101, which was destroyed by the Necrons in 897.M41, leaving no survivors.[3a] Canoness Sepherina visited the site in 909.M41 to reconsecrate the ground and construct a memorial to her Sisters in the form of a number of small statues of Saint Katherine, one for each sister, to watch over the site of their martyrdom. The bodies of the Sisters were collected by Inquisitor Hoth, and had not been returned to the Order by the time Sepherina made her visit.[3b] It is not known if their bodies were ever returned.
A mission of the Order was sent to Parnis to investigate a lost convent of sisters. Ephrael Stern, a Seraphim, was the only survivor of the expedition, and returned without explanation for what happened on Parnis, barely sane and suspected of Chaos taint. The sister later ended up missing after a second expedition to the world led by the Inquisitor Silas Hand again resulted in Ephrael as the only survivor. The Inquisition is torn between killing her or capturing her.
Miriael Sabathiel was a Sister Superior of the Order and is the only sister acknowledged to have willingly fallen to Chaos. A Canoness of the Order, Olga Karamanz, was murdered by Miriael when she tried to apprehend her, even as the Canoness proclaimed a desire to help Miriael.
Third War for Armageddon
The forces of the Order have been seen heavily in the Armageddon sector, during the Third Armageddon War. They protect lone worlds from attack and strongly regulate the lives of those under their jurisdiction, and that of the Ecclesiarchy. Their power comes from the great Sanctorum of St. Katherine which is built within the high walls of Hive Tempestora which is also a centre for Ecclesiarchal activities on Armageddon. Their positions were assaulted by Orks emerging from vast submersibles emerging from the Boiling Sea. The Sisters were the front-line defence of Hive Tempestora but due to the sheer surprise and ferocity of the Ork attack, many units were caught unaware and floundered. This allowed the Orks to take control of the majority of the underhive within a few hours of landing.[Needs Citation]
The Sisters were gradually pushed back through the dark, dank tunnels of the Hive with each successive wave of Orks. When the Orks reached the heart of the Hive, the Imperial command structure began to break down as the hordes rapidly pushed on. Several units were dispatched to defend area which had already been overrun. Their resistance quickly became a running battle for the Sisters and what few Hive militia they could rally while the Orks reveled in the chaos they were causing and continued to push the Sisters back to the great armoured doors of the Sanctorum.[Needs Citation]
Here, the Sisters refused to retreat any further. The battle intensified as the Order rallied against the Orks, calling for every member of the Ecclesiarchy present to lay down their lives in defence of the holy site. The Order's numbers began to dwindle as Ork and Sister died together. Through sheer weight of numbers the Orks gradually overwhelmed the Sisters and pushed them back. Finally, one last charge by Warboss Nargrim and his mega-armoured Nobz caused the Sisters` line to crumble. The following period became one of the darkest in the history of the Order The lines of Sisters, broken and scattered, attempted to form up again but were readily cut down by the huge tide of Orks. Finally, after an hour of savage fighting, no humans were left alive. The Orks had taken Hive Tempestora and the Sanctorum.[Needs Citation]
After this massive battle the Order could barely field three companies. The loss of their Sanctorum spread throughout the Order and many Novices questioned their faith in the Emperor. Though horribly damaged, the Order recovered quickly and swore to make the Orks pay for damaging their holy site and would retake Tempestora at all costs. Before they could do this however, their depleted numbers were spread over the rest of the planet. Here they were used to solidify the defences of key areas and were pivotal in keeping the Orks from overrunning several areas.[Needs Citation]
- The 13th Black Crusade - they fought with Jenen Ironclads on the planet of Kromat II[7a]. Another major contingent of the Order fought under Saint Celestine on Cadia.
- Katherine (Deceased)
- Saint Praxedes (Deceased)
- Saint Celestine (Deceased)
- Celestian Miriya
- Ephrael Stern
- Canoness Eleanor and Genevieve, now known as the Geminae Superia
- Petronella - Abbess
- Order of the Ebon Chalice
- Order of the Argent Shroud
- Order of the Valorous Heart
- Order of the Sacred Rose
- Order of the Bloody Rose
- 1: Codex: Sisters of Battle (2nd Edition)
- 2: Codex: Witch Hunters (3rd Edition)
- 3: Codex: Necrons (3rd Edition)
- 4: Daemonifuge
- 5: The Invitation (Short Story)
- 6: White Dwarf 382 (US), pg. 101
- 7: Imperial Armour Volume Two (First Edition)
- 8: Gathering Storm: Fall of Cadia Chapter 2