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Battle for Honoria

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The Battle for Honoria
Date M41
Location Honoria
Outcome Imperial victory
Combatants
Imperium Orks
Commanders
Company Master Zadakiel(w)
Sergeant Balthasar
Ezekiel(w)
Rephial
Serpicus
Puriel(d)
Arch Magos Hieronymous Diezen
Warboss Groblonik(d)
Strength
Dark Angels Fifth Company and supporting elements

Several thousand Atanix Triumvirae Skitarii

20 regiments of Mordian Iron Guard
20 regiments of Vostroyan Firstborn

PDF Garrison
Waaagh!
Losses/Survivors
Mechanicus forces completely wiped out[1r]

Hundreds of thousands of Guardsmen and Imperial citizens killed[1r]
Waaagh! annihilated[1r]





The Battle for Honoria was fought between the forces of the Imperium and the Orks of Waaagh! Groblonik in M41. The conflict is notable for being the battle in which the Dark Angels Librarian Ezekiel lost his eye, gaining his augmetic eye as a replacement in the process.

Background

The planet Honoria initially became part of the Imperium during the Great Crusade, but following the Horus Heresy was isolated for ten thousand years by a Warp Storm.[1a][1c] After the storm had abated, the planet reestablished contact with the Imperium.[1c] Soon after, a Mechanicus delegation from the Forge World Atanix Triumvirae, led by Arch Magos Hieronymous Diezen arrived on Honoria, eager to uncover archaeotech.[1e] They were not disappointed; over the millennia the inhabitants had fortified every major settlement on Honoria with high, sturdy walls equipped with miles of killzone trenches defended by highly-advanced automated weapons batteries.[1f][1g]

Less than two years afterwards, Honoria found itself under attack by the Orks of Waaagh! Groblonik.[1b][1e] In addition to the planet's PDF garrison and several thousand Skitarii warriors from Atanix Triumvirae under Magos Diezen's command, the planet was reinforced by twenty regiments each of the Mordian Iron Guard and the Vostroyan Firstborn.[1c] Under the pretext of requiring further reinforcements, Diezen invoked the Pact of Kulgotha to summon aid from the Dark Angels Space Marine Chapter; the Fifth Company under Company Master Zadakiel was diverted from supporting Chief Librarian Danatheum on Aryand to assist in the defence of Honoria.[1c]

Initial Ork landings

Although the Imperial Navy attempted to blockade the planet to prevent the Orks from landing in large numbers, they were not successful and several million Orks made it to the surface in the first waves.[1f]

The Imperium's vessels in the void were eventually bolstered by the arrival of the Dark Angels Strike Cruiser Sword of Caliban. Arriving in system just outside of Honoria's gravity well, the Dark Angels deployed rapidly to the surface and took command of the overall war effort, while the ship's mistress, Selenaz, coordinated the planet's orbital defences.[1d][1f]

Despite the weight of numbers being against them, the cities across Honoria were holding fast, their formidable defences killing thousands of the greenskins, which seemed to be throwing themselves at the cities' walls with no sense of self preservation. The powerful automated weapons systems lining the outer walls of the cities also ensured that the Imperium maintained air superiority, shooting down almost all of Ork Aircraft that approached.[1f][1g]

After the Ork's Warboss, Groblonik, launched a personal assault on Honoria's capital city, Aurelianum, the Dark Angels believed that they had an opportunity to end the war quickly by killing the ork leader.[1h] Company Master Zadakiel engaged in a duel with the creature, but underestimated his foe and was severely wounded.[1i] Zadakiel was only saved from certain death by the intervention of Interrogator-Chaplain Puriel; Puriel, however, was killed by the Warboss and Zadakiel fell into a sus-an coma. Inexplicably, despite having breached the walls of Aurelianum, Groblonik ordered a retreat.[1j]

Command of the Dark Angels fell to Librarian Ezekiel, who named Sergeant Balthasar as his second-in-command.[1k]

Groblonik's Stratgem

This, however, was all part of Groblonik's plan to overwhelm Aurelianum. The constant waves of Orks attacking the most heavily-fortified areas of the city provided a distraction, allowing Groblonik to restart the forges northeast of the city and using them build thousands of transports equipped with large scoops. These vehicles were eventually unleashed, scooping up the Ork corpses outside the walls and piling them together to form massive ramps and allowing the greenskins to bypass the outer defences.[1l][1m]

Battle for Sularian Gate

The Orks quickly overran the Sularian Gate, scaling the walls and killing their defenders. At this point, Groblonik also unleashed the bulk of his Waaagh!'s aircraft, which it had been keeping in reserve, to overwhelm the anti-air emplacements through sheer numbers. The results were devastating, forcing the Imperial units to withdraw to Aurelianum's inner citadel. To make matters worse, a stray shot hit Ezekiel in the eye, rendering him unconscious.[1n][2]

With Ezekiel close to death and Imperial forces in retreat, Balthasar chose to undertake another attempt to assassinate Groblonik.[1o] Leading thousands of Guardsmen and a column of armoured vehicles in a counterattack, Balthasar engaged the Warboss in another duel.[1p]

Ezekiel's Duel with Groblonik

Ezekiel was fitted with his now-eponymous augmetic eye and recovered from his wounds in time to intervene in a duel between Balthasar and Groblonik. Wielding his psychic might, Ezekiel killed Groblonik.[1q]

Aftermath

With Groblonik's death, his Waaagh! shattered. The remaining Orks were exterminated by the Space Marines and Astra Militarum.[1r]

Sources