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Blades of the Traitor (Anthology)

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Blades of the Traitor
Author John French, Guy Haley, Nick Kyme, Graham McNeill, Chris Wraight
Publisher Black Library
Series Horus Heresy Series
Released February 2015
Pages 118
Editions ISBN 9781849709675

Blades of the Traitor - Heed the Warmaster's Call is an anthology in the Horus Heresy Series first released at the Horus Heresy Weekender event in February 2015. It was released in audio format as part of "Audio Week" at the end of Advent 2015. These short stories were re-collected as part of War Without End published in January 2016.

The anthology was comprised of five short stories: "Daemonology" describes Mortarion's quest for knowledge to defeat daemons, "Black Oculus" provides information regarding the Iron Warriors reasons for starting the Battle of Tallarn, "Twisted" reveals information on the actions of Maloghurst the Twisted, "Chirurgeon" portrays experiments of Fabius Bile, and "Wolf Mother" explains the events following the novel Vengeful Spirit.

Audio Release

The anthology was released on audio as part of "Audio Week" for Advent 2015. It was described as: "The Audio Week: Blades of the Traitor Subscription brings you five epic, action-packed audiobook that drive the Horus Heresy forward. Discover what the Warmaster’s allies are up to as they prepare to march on Terra: sacrifices in the bowels of Molech’s Enlightenment, Legion Navigators delving through the very Eye of Terror and horrific experiments in dark, secret labs."[6]

The stories were narrated by Gareth Armstrong, Ian Brooker, Jonathan Keeble & Toby Longworth. They had a total running time of 4 hours, 11 minutes.[6]

Cover Description

Across the war-torn galaxy, those sworn to Horus's cause shake the Imperium to its very foundations. Before the traitors' relentless onslaught, the wisdom of ages past is lost and forgotten, daemons hide amongst the common people and the warp's corrupting influence can be seen in almost every facet of the Heresy. For those who would become champions of the new order, there can surely be no redemption – only an eternity of carnage and slaughter, and the laughter of thirsting gods...



by Chris Wraight, originally published November 2014 as Daemonology (Short Story).

Mortarion, primarch of the Death Guard Legion, brings his forces to the library-world Terathalion which was brought into compliance by the Thousand Sons. The Death Guard swiftly destroy the meagerly-defended world and Mortarion achieves his goal by capturing a seemingly ordinary woman named Lermenta. Back aboard his flagship it is revealed that Lermenta is a daemon who was masquerading as a human librarian to get access to the planet's secrets. Seeking to understand the nature of daemons so he can destroy them Mortarion tortures Lermenta with primitive rituals, but she goads him that it is his fate to become a powerful servant of the Warp-powers he so despises. Throughout the story Mortarion has flashbacks to a time when he visited Terra in search of his father and discovered the Infinity Gate under construction. Grudgingly deterred by Malcador the Sigillite, Mortarion is appeased when Malcador reveals his part in the Emperor's plans for the Council of Nikaea as part of a grander scheme for freeing humankind from dependence on the Warp. Back aboard his flagship, Lermenta breaks free of her bonds and attacks Mortarion in her true daemonic form, forcing him to repel her with his latent psyker powers. Furious that he has been forced to use the powers he seeks to destroy, Mortarion decides that he should at least learn to wield them properly and begins taking grudging guidance from Lermenta.[1]

Black Oculus

by John French, originally published 19 January 2015 as Black Oculus (Short Story).

"Black Oculus" is told from the perspective of the Prime Navigator of the Iron Warriors' flagship. He recounts his experience of guiding the fleet through a huge black anomaly and, driven insane by the revelations about the universe he received during the crossing, warns the reader of their insignificance. He ends by mentioning he is now waiting in a secret place beneath the surface of a planet called Tallarn during the Battle of Tallarn.[2]


by Guy Haley, originally published February 2015 as Twisted (Short Story).

Maloghurst the Twisted, equerry to primarch Horus, receives petitioners in the Lupercal's Court aboard the Vengeful Spirit. He rebuffs yet another bid by the Davinite contingent aboard the ship to be allowed to tutor Horus in the ways of the Warp. Moving about the ship on his business, Maloghurst reflects on the growing distance between himself and his primarch, which is endangering the privileged position that keeps him secure in the Sons of Horus' martial culture where he is despised as a cripple. He becomes aware that a daemon made of oil and smoke is stalking him, trying to seduce him into letting it use his body as a host. Seeking the knowledge to repel it, he visits the Davinite enclave and begins learning warding rituals. Under the guise of the final ritual the Davinites shackle him to a eight-pointed cross and invoke the daemon, wanting it to possess him so they will have influence over the Warmaster once more. However, Maloghurst easily breaks free of his chains and summons a squad of battle-brothers who slaughter the Davinites, deriding the simplicity of their plan and their audacity in thinking they could outwit him. Using an item he sanctified earlier Maloghurst banishes the daemon back to the Warp. He reports back to Horus that the Davinite attempt to seize power has been foiled, just one of many such plots Maloghurst has dealt with. Horus is pleased but dismissive, leaving Maloghurst to contemplate his insecure future.[3]


by Nick Kyme, originally published February 2015 as Chirurgeon (Short Story).

Fabius Bile, chief Apothecary of the Emperor's Children, performs surgery on an unknown patient, uncovering and noting a degrading ailment that is slowly destroying the subject's organs. Reflecting on the past as he works, Fabius thinks back to the time before the Emperor's Children were united with Fulgrim, when they were suffering from the same corrosive disease and approaching extinction. Working as an Apothecary, he began to order the executions of all of his brothers who showed symptoms and regard their bodies as simple lumps of organic matter to be studied, even that of his close friend Lycaeon whose execution he was eventually forced to order. Beginning to stitch up his patient, Fabius reflects that it was the discovery of Fulgrim and the bolstering of the Legion's gene-pool with his genes that saved them. However, it is not permanent, as is shown when the patient is revealed to be Fabius himself. Thanking his assistant, the mindless resurrected body of Lycaeon, Fabius reflects darkly on his deteriorating health.[4]

Wolf Mother

by Graham McNeill, originally published February 2015 as Wolf Mother (Short Story).

Alivia Sureka, a Perpetual, is captured in the bowels of a ship carrying refugees from Molech by a sadistic member of the Serpent Cult. Severian appears and kills the cultist, but Alivia angrily berates him for foiling her plan which was to play the victim so she could find where the cult have taken her daughter, whom they have kidnapped. In the room where the cult are keeping their kidnapped children Alivia's daughter Vivyen calms the others by reading to them from a book of old Terran fairy-tales Alivia gave her, but they fall back into despair when one of their number is dragged away to be killed by the cult. Alivia and Severian locate the cult's lair just as all seven remaining children are dragged out to be used as sacrifices in a horrific ritual. Shargali-Shi, head of the cult, gives birth to a daemonic snake while suspended from the ceiling. Alivia and Severian fight their way through a sea of cultists and six corrupted Thalaxii as the snake bites all of the children save Vivyen, causing them to mutate and fuse into a daemonette of Slaanesh. Alivia kills the snake but is unable to stop the daemonette which she allows to possess her. Understanding her plan Severian kills her possessed body after finishing off all the cultists and Thalaxii, driving the daemon out into the suspended form of Shargali-Shi, which cannot contain it and explodes, killing both the cult leader and the daemon. With Vivyen safe, Alivia returns to life.[5]


Horus Heresy Series
Novels I Horus RisingII False GodsIII Galaxy in FlamesIV The Flight of the EisensteinV FulgrimVI Descent of AngelsVII LegionVIII Battle for the AbyssIX MechanicumX Tales of HeresyXI Fallen AngelsXII A Thousand SonsXIII NemesisXIV The First HereticXV Prospero BurnsXVI Age of DarknessXVII The Outcast DeadXVIII Deliverance LostXIX Know No FearXX The PrimarchsXXI Fear to TreadXXII Shadows of TreacheryXXIII Angel ExterminatusXXIV BetrayerXXV Mark of CalthXXVI Vulkan LivesXXVII The Unremembered EmpireXXVIII ScarsXXIX Vengeful SpiritXXX The Damnation of PythosXXXI Legacies of BetrayalXXXII DeathfireXXXIII War Without EndXXXIV PharosXXXV Eye of TerraXXXVI The Path of HeavenXXXVII The Silent WarXXXVIII Angels of CalibanXXXIX Praetorian of DornXL CoraxXLI The Master of MankindXLII GarroXLIII Shattered LegionsXLIV The Crimson KingXLV TallarnXLVI RuinstormXLVII Old EarthXLVIII The Burden of LoyaltyXLIX WolfsbaneL Born of FlameLI Slaves to DarknessLII Heralds of the SiegeLIII TitandeathLIV The Buried Dagger
Siege of Terra I The Solar WarII The Lost and the DamnedIII The First WallSons of the SelenarIV SaturnineFury of MagnusV MortisVI WarhawkVII Echoes of EternityGarro: Knight of GreyVIII The End and the Death (Volume IVolume IIVolume III)
The Primarchs Roboute Guilliman: Lord of UltramarLeman Russ: The Great WolfMagnus the Red: Master of ProsperoPerturabo: The Hammer of OlympiaLorgar: Bearer of the WordFulgrim: The Palatine PhoenixFerrus Manus: Gorgon of MedusaGrandfather's GiftPerturabo: Stone and IronMalcador: First Lord of the ImperiumKonrad Curze: A Lesson in DarknessJaghatai Khan: Warhawk of ChogorisVulkan: Lord of DrakesSons of the EmperorCorax: Lord of ShadowsAngron: Slave of NuceriaScions of the Emperor Konrad Curze: The Night HaunterGhost of NuceriaThe Passing of AngelsThe Abyssal EdgeMercy of the DragonLion El'Jonson: Lord of the FirstIllyriumThe Revelation of the WordMorningstarWill of the LegionEmbers of ExtinctionAlpharius: Head of the HydraBlood of the EmperorLoyal SonsMortarion: The Pale KingRogal Dorn: The Emperor's CrusaderSanguinius: The Great AngelHeirs of The Emperor
Horus Heresy Characters Valdor: Birth of the ImperiumLuther: First of the FallenSigismund: The Eternal CrusaderEidolon: The Auric Hammer
Novellas Promethean SunAurelianBrotherhood of the StormThe Reflection Crack'dFeat of IronThe LionThe Serpent BeneathCorax: SoulforgeScorched EarthTallarn: ExecutionerPrince of CrowsThe Crimson FistThe PurgeRavenlordThe Seventh SerpentTallarn: IroncladCyberneticaWolf KingThe HonouredThe UnburdenedGarro: Vow of FaithSons of the ForgeDreadwingSpear of Ultramar
Collections AngronThe Imperial TruthSedition's GateEchoes of RuinDeath and DefianceBlades of the TraitorMedusonBetrayal at CalthEchoes of the ImperiumVirtues of the Sons/Sins of the FatherEchoes of RevelationLupercal's WarCthonia's Reckoning
Short Stories The Lightning TowerThe Dark KingArmy of OneKryptosDistant Echoes of Old NightLost SonsDeath of a SilversmithThe Divine WordThe Kaban ProjectThe Gates of TerraLord of the Red SandsSerpentLuna MendaxRivenBjorn: Lone WolfThe Wolf of Ash and FireHeart of the ConquerorChild of NightThe ShadowmastersThe Devine AdoratriceDaemonologySins of the FatherThe Final Compliance of Sixty-Three FourteenVoraxThe Value of FearBrotherhood of the MoonVirtues of the SonsImperfectHowl of the HearthworldA Safe and Shadowed PlaceGunsightBlack OculusWolf MotherTwistedChirurgeonTallarn: WitnessIronfireHands of the EmperorBy the Lion's CommandAll That RemainsThe PhoenicianArtefactsGhosts Speak NotPatienceInheritorTallarn: SirenBlackshieldMyriadInto ExileThe Grey RavenThe Painted CountExocytosisThe Last Son of ProsperoOrdo SinisterThe Ember WolvesRestorerThe Laurel of DefianceImmortal DutyDuty WaitsMagisteriumNow Peals MidnightDreams of UnityThe Board is SetThe Atonement of FireA Lesson in IronMassacreTwo Metaphysical BladesPrologue to NikaeaOld Wounds, New ScarsAbyssalThe Last CouncilA Rose Watered with BloodBringer of SorrowLantern's LightThe Serpent's DanceThe Lightning HallEater of DreamsBloodhowlAmor FatiThe Fields of AbundanceThe Shel'tain AffairPrimacyThe NineVisageThe Last Loyalist
Audio Dramas Raven's FlightGarro: Oath of MomentGarro: Legion of OneButcher's NailsGrey AngelBurden of DutyGarro: Sword of TruthWarmasterStrike and FadeVeritas FerrumThe SigilliteHonour to the DeadWolf HuntCensureThief of RevelationsKhârn: The Eightfold PathLucius: The Eternal BlademasterCypher: Guardian of OrderHunter's MoonWolf's ClawTemplarGarro: Shield of LiesMaster of the FirstThe Long NightStratagemHerald of SanguiniusThe WatcherThe Eagle's TalonIron CorpsesGarro: Ashes of FealtyRaptorGrey TalonRed-MarkedThe EitherThe Heart of the PharosThe Thirteenth WolfChildren of SicarusPerpetualThe Soul, SeveredValeriusThe Binary SuccessionDark ComplianceBlackshields: The False WarBlackshields: The Red FiefHubris of MonarchiaNightfaneBlackshields: The Broken Chain
Artbooks Visions of Heresy (2013)Visions of Heresy (2018)Art of the Horus Heresy
Script Books Horus Heresy: The Scripts: Volume IHorus Heresy: The Scripts: Volume II
Graphic Novels Macragge's Honour