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Fall of Sotha

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Fall of Sotha
ScythesEmpArt.jpg
The Scythes of the Emperor battle Tyranids on Miral
Conflict Second Tyrannic War
Date ~993.M41
Location Sotha/Miral System
Outcome Tyrannic victory, Scythes of the Emperor barely survive
Combatants
Scythes of the Emperor Tyranids
Commanders
Chapter Master Mansirius Thorcyra (KIA)
Captain Thrasius
Hive Mind
Strength
6 Companies (Initially) Hive Fleet Kraken
Genestealer Cults
Losses/Survivors
All but a single company escapes Unknown, presumably heavy

The Fall of Sotha and the subsequent Battle of Miral was a campaign of the Second Tyrannic War.[1]

Overview

Sotha Falls

Among the planets overwhelmed by the locust-tide of Kraken was the Scythes of the Emperor's homeworld Sotha. Even for a well-defended Chapter planet with some 6 Companies mustered in its defense[5a], there was little hope against such vast numbers and relentless hunger, and in the end due to Genestealer Cult uprisings[1] the Chapter brethren were killed in the last stand on the planet. All brethren were presumed destroyed, but a small number had escaped in order to preserve their chapter and gene-seed. Sotha, along with so many other planets in the inexorable advance of the Kraken, was reduced to the state of an asteroid by the Tyranid swarms. Two hundred Marines broke through the Tyranid assault. With much of the region overwhelmed by the Tyranids, there was nowhere to escape.[4]

The Battle of Miral

The last of the Scythes eventually landed on the death world of Miral.[4] The remaining Scythes numbered only some 40 Tactical Marines, 30 Assault Marines, 3 squads of Devastators, 20 Scouts, 68 Aspirants[5b], 3 Predators, 2 Whirlwinds, 3 Attack Bikes, and a handful of Rhinos and Razorbacks.[2] Nonetheless, Chapter Master Mansirius Thorcyra declared that they would build a new Fortress Monastery on the planet.[5b]

Somewhere on the surface of this planet, a huge rocky outcrop called the Giant's Coffin rose from the jungle. The surviving forces of the Scythes prepared to make this their final stronghold. The Giant's Coffin was a tremendous natural citadel whose steep cliffs would slow the invaders and the rocky promontories would provide excellent firing positions for heavy weapons.[2] Although the defenses of the Scythes were strong they were still overwhelmed. Their Chapter Master Thorcyra met his end on Miral and the Scythes were forced to withdraw.[3] The fate of Miral is unknown, although little more than a Company of the Scythes of the Emperor escaped with their lives.[4] In the aftermath of the evacuation, Miral was subjected to Exterminatus by the Battle Barge Heart of Cronus.[5c]

Captain Thrasius became the new Chapter Master and planned a series of hit and run attacks against the Tyranids. This pattern of defense and retreat continued until they received word that Hive Fleet Kraken's unstoppable advance had finally been staggered by the Ultramarines on Ichar IV. At that time, the Scythes were engaged in the preparation of defences on Bosphor, and were bitterly disappointed not to have been present when that first great victory was won. Thereafter, Thrasius's strategy became principally concerned with the preservation of his Chapter and the salvaging of as much material as possible from the devastation wrought by the Tyranids.[3]

Sources