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Margin Crusade

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The Margin Crusade was a Crusade launched by the Ministorum, which began in 784.M41 and was sent into the Margin region of the Halo Stars.

Beginnings

While the Ministorum constantly fights with the darkness within the Imperium, from time to time it also embarks on grand crusades, hurling men and ships into the void to carve out new realms in fire and blood in the Emperor's name[3b]. The Ministorum have initiated and sanctioned hundreds of crusades down the centuries, from minor expeditions to reclaim lost territory to massive undertakings intended to forge whole new sectors in their wake. The largest and most recent of these has been the Margin Crusade[3b].

The Crusade began officially when holy writ was given by the Sector Synod Obscurus and was to take place far to the Calixis Sector’s Spinward border[1]. This writ granted the power to raise a war of faith under the auspices of High Confessor Corvinus of Thracian Primaris and called upon the Scarus, Calixis and Ixaniad Sectors to provide the means to power the Imperial war machine. Soon, tithes and musters of troops and materiel were gathered for the crusade from the sectors named[5]. In 784.M41 with a flotilla of dozens of cruisers and a force of millions of troops, the crusade was launched into the Margin region in the Halo Stars, beyond the light of the Astronomicon to the galactic north. In the three decades since, dozens more ships and millions more troops have been raised in the name of the crusade and sent off into the void, never to return.

Failure

The Crusade made scant progress, in the years since its launch and slowly exhausted itself, boiling away beyond the borders of Calixian space, far beyond the frontier world of Kalf. The war was a diverse and bloody affair, bogged down by the vagaries of warp travel and the tactical ineptitude of those in charge, achieving little despite millions of lives spent and the continued admonitions of its controlling priests.[3b] Even an appearance of the dreaded Tyrant Star on the world of Karrik[6], seemed to be a sign of the end. Disaster struck the already faltering crusade, when Corvinus was slain by alien hands and the forces of his crusade were soon smashed to bloody wreckage amongst the Halo Stars[3b]. By 788.M41 the Imperium, had lost contact with forces of the Margin Crusade.[2]

Lies and the Achilus Crusade

Despite the failure of the Margin Crusade, the Ministorum for decades has continued to fabricate news of the crusade's success in cleansing alien empires and reclaiming distant worlds for the Emperor and the Imperium. The Ministorum preaches forth new recruits from the pulpit, and the scribes and procurators of the Departmento Munitorum divert the disposition of tens of thousands of fighting soldiers, support vessels and resources from the compliant worlds of the sector. The church finds having an active crusade useful in more ways than one. Quite apart from the resources it generates, it allows them to draw attention away from more local problems and the concerns of the System Synods and planetary governance. So, as long as it serves their purpose, the Margin Crusade will continue to exist. Some of these resources the church uses for itself[3b], the majority however find their way to fuel another battle for the Imperium: the Achilus Crusade[4]. This is a fact that is kept hidden from the general population, the forces sent to fight in the crusade and even the planetary and sub-sector governors, lest the flow of flesh and iron into the killing machine of the Achilus Crusade be disrupted[4]. Understandably, if the truth about the Margin Crusade were to surface, the Ministorum would stand to lose these resources and possibly even the support of dozens of worlds who have sent their sons off to die, in what they believed was an Emperor-ordained war of faith.[3a]

Sources