Kasimir De Valtos
The experience left his body shattered, wracked with constant physical pain and his senses dulled so that he was unable to taste food or drink[1a][1b].[1c] It also drove him insane, though this was not apparent to his allies or enemies.
Outwardly, he withdrew from the active management of his cartel, and invested large sums in archaeological expeditions across the planet. To the rest of Pavonis, he was admired as a patron of the arts and a connoisseur of antiquities, as well as pitied for surviving his ordeal.[1a][1b]
Inwardly, he was obsessed with repairing his broken body and inflicting revenge on the whole galaxy for his suffering. In the short term, he kidnapped men and women and personally tortured them to death, while also undergoing surgeries from the Dark Eldar, with whom he had allied himself (paradoxically, by undergoing torture at the Dark Eldar's hands he gained a measure of respect and authority among them).[1b][1d] In the long term, he used his wealth to fund an obsessive search for the Nightbringer, an ancient C'tan deity that ancient scrolls had said was located on Pavonis. de Valtos believed that releasing the entity from its prison would allow him to become immortal and nearly omnipotent.[1e]
Allying himself with Vendare Taloun, he staged a coup d'etat on Pavonis, ousting Governor Mykola Shonai by military force, and taking her and Inquisitor Ario Barzano prisoner. Both were freed from de Valtos's estate by Captain Uriel Ventris, but not before de Valtos and his Dark Eldar allies had unearthed the Nightbringer.
It was only after they had released it, that he comprehended the sheer age and destructive power of the Nightbringer, and realized that it had no need to notice him, much less reward him in any way. He was reduced to begging for immortality, before the Nightbringer casually struck off his head.[1f]
In the aftermath of his death, the de Valtos cartel disintegrated, and his estate on Pavonis was abandoned. Several other cartels fell into disarray, their leaders having been killed by de Valtos shortly before the coup began. Taloun was convicted of treason and executed.
- 1: Nightbringer (Novel) — The Ultramarines Omnibus by Graham McNeill: