The Maerorus Temple is a renegade Temple of the Officio Assassinorum.
Each of the six known Temples of the Officio Assassinorum trains its Assassins to excel at a particular type of killing, to cover a wide variety of targets and tactical situations. The Maerorus, the seventh temple, was created to deal with multiple targets simultaneously, such as the command hierarchy of an enemy army, or the members of a particularly widespread Chaos cult.[1c]
The Maerorus adepts recognized that, no matter how skilled the assassin, it becomes exponentially harder to kill subsequent targets, who have been alerted by the initial kill. To that end, Maerorus assassins were designed to be living weapons, able to kill masses of people with no weapon except their own bodies, since even the finest and most carefully maintained weaponry was subject to failure. Their modus operandi was to enter into a target-rich area, typically a meeting or gathering and kill every sub-target present as quickly as possible.[1c]
First conceived in the early years of M40, the Maerorus Temple was developed by Hereteks under the express orders of the Officio Assassinorum. Centuries were spent trying to gain leverage over Mechanicus Adepts to develop the illegal technology needed to create the Maerorus's unique assassins. Whole wars were fought and even an STC was handed over to the priests of Mars as payment for the tests and research needed.[1c]
The Maerorus Temple started as a huge, illegal experiment camp where thousands of prisoners were rendered down to create the genetic material required to make the first assassin. Forbidden technology, mutant cross-breeding and xenos hybrids, most likely Tyranid strains, were combined to create the first (and technically last) assassin, Legienstrasse.[1c]
At some point Legienstrasse went rogue and decided she had the potential to topple the Imperium as she saw fit. Such was the threat she presented, the Officio Assassinourm willingly made pacts with daemons and Chaos Space Marines from the World Eaters to attack the remote planet of Opis, where Legienstrasse had taken refuge.[Needs Citation]
The Assassinorum spent decades seeding the innocent planet, which admittedly had an easily corruptible ruling class, with Chaos cults and creating civil unrest against the Emperor. The result was an investigation by Lord Inquisitor Kekrops and his followers. Upon arriving on Opis, the Inquistor and all but one of his retinue were assassinated by a Vindicare operative. The blame for this action fell on the decadent ruling class.[1a]
Full-out war was declared on Opis and an Imperial retribution force of dozens of Imperial Guard Regiments and a sizable detachment of Imperial Fist Space Marines under the command of Darnath Lysander were deployed to bring Opis back into line. It was secretly hoped by the Assassinourm that the war would force Legienstrasse into the open to flee the planet, allowing the Assassinorum a chance to finally kill her after almost a millennium on the loose.[1b]
The Maerorus assassin was finally killed by Captain Lysander, though with great losses to the Imperial Fists and the Imperial Guard alike. With her dead, the Maerorus Temple effectively no longer existed, but Lysander warned the Officio Assassinorum, through mutual contacts in the Inquisition, that they had made a bad enemy in the Imperial Fists, drawing him and his men into a war of their creation, just to fix their own mistake.[Needs Citation]
The rapidly mutating nature of the Maerorus Assassins is remarkable similar to the effects of the T-Virus and G-Virus from the Resident Evil series of video games and movies. Both the viruses and the Maerorus assassins mutate at an alarmingly fast rate, creating any known bio-mutation available to fight, although the virus victims were not in control where the Maerorus assassins were.
- 1: Seventh Retribution (Novel) by Ben Counter
|Temples of the Officio Assassinorum|
|Main Temples||Callidus • Culexus • Eversor • Vindicare|
|Other Temples||Adamus • Maerorus • Vanus • Venenum|