Almost Human

A Brief History of the Abhuman Groups on Bromhead

Ogryns (Homo Sapiens Gigantus)
The Ogryn was first brought to Bromhead with the original settlement and exploration fleet as a heavy labourer and has been enlisted in the military in the accordance with imperial doctrine. There are many Ogryns in civilian life in Bromhead, commonly found in factories and foundries although the further north you travel the more varied their roles become. Warner's Junction is known for employing Ogryn enforcer groups to make sure the rowdiest of visitors don't overstay their welcome.  

The job of recruiting these gigantic creatures into the military is given to the most unfortunate of recruiting sergeants. It is a job that carries huge risks, many have been injured and a few killed whilst trying to sign up often very belligerent Ogryns who've never been indoctrinated into the Imperial cult. Due to this, it is usually the very young and juvenile Ogryns that are pressganged (as much as it's possible to pressgang an Ogryn) into the PDF and is given menial tasks and much praise until he is fully indoctrinated and can be trusted to take to the battlefield and fight for the glory of the God Emperor. 

Because of the wild nature of northern Bromhead there are bands of mercenary Ogryns unchecked by imperial sanction. These unsanctioned abhumans will often be manipulated or paid to fight for most any army. Many a rebellion or heretic group have had Ogryns in their ranks. Anyone planning any civil unrest knows only to well the impact one of these brutes can have. 

Ratlings (Homo Sapiens Minimus)
Ratlings are scarce on Bromhead. They have been known to fight alongside various Imperial Guard units for certain actions but always in limited numbers and for brief secondments. Squads are sent, on occasion, to Bromhead to do active duty training for specific campaigns. 

Ratlings in civilian life are rarer still. Many of the northern citizens would look upon such diminutive types as merely prey or at best a decoy. The only role the have excelled in is catering for larger prospecting groups where they are provided a modicum of security in return for their culinary expertise. 

Squats (Homo Sapiens Rotundus)
Although a race nearly wiped out by Tyrannids, the Squats are a hardy breed and there are  a few, small, households on Bromhead. They seem naturally drawn by its frontier nature and the mining opportunities appeal directly to this particular group and they are very well suited to eking out an existence on this harsh planet. Though they are comfortable on Bromhead, none have a permanent base on the planet. They come on licence to mine and prospect, often backed by the Mechanium.    

One household, the Karaz-Dunn, have a seat on the council of Bromhead, on the Island. They have no standing military presence, but operate a militia system where each squat is armed and ready to defend their territory. These small but effective militia groups will often assist Imperial troops when their interests overlap. 

It is rare to visit a prospecting camp and not meet some of these hardy types. They range in nature from good tempered and jovial to down right belligerent. Alcohol often plays a vital part in this regard as does success. They hold a grudge like no other group and have outstanding memories. Repayment of debts is also very important and many Squats are oath sworn to settlements who have saved them in some way or another. Gambling with a Squat is considered an especially perilous pastime. 

Beastmen (Homo Sapiens Variatus)
The abhumans known as Beastmen are the only abhuman variant established on Bromhead prior to settlement by the Imperium. The Beastmen encountered by the first humans regarded the newcomers as warriors from the sky, sent to deliver them from the threat posed by the Orks in the east. Enthusiastically they rallied to the cause of waging war on the greenskins and with guidance from expedition forces, were soon a brutally effective attack force. 

Many humans remained suspicious of the Beastmen, who worshiped the emperor in a feral way, giving votive offerings and sacrifices as they would one of their own gods of the natural order. They were wild and fearless fighters however, and the only things (save Ogryns) who could fight an Ork in close combat.  Elsewhere in the Imperium similar groups of Beastmen had, like the other abhuman variants, been absorbed into the regular fighting forces of the Imperial Guard. Thus it was on Bromhead, with Beastmen vying to be selected to go offworld and serve the God Emperor. 

Imperial policy evolved however and those with an abiding suspicion of the true nature of Beastmen gained increasing influence as to how they were to be managed, recruited and utilised. Gradually, the raising of regiments and their inclusion as acceptable forces for meeting the Imperial tithe was frowned upon and phased out. The implications for Bromhead were immense as the increasing instances of strange and deeply unpleasant phenomena originating in the far north west were reason enough to regulate more closely the Beastmen. 

In the early 200's of M41, Beastment were sent deep into what had become known as The Taint, ostensibly to destroy the threats there but in reality to drive them far away from old grounds and allow them to be corralled and contained in a place where their fate mattered little. 

Since this "betrayal" the surviving Beastmen have regressed into the feral society they originally were. Language skills have decreased and instability in their genes has increased. They worship new gods at great herd stones and harbour a great resentment of the humans who betrayed their ancestors and the God Emperor who turned his back upon them. 

Something wicked this way comes...

Does the twisted power of the warp attract corruption or create it? Perhaps it is something of both for the might of the empyrean is something few mortals can comprehend. Some planets are blighted by proximity to unstable regions of space, with warp storms causing them havoc. Others feel the touch of the warp through the actions of individuals, those that seek power or forbidden knowledge and form dark covenants with the corrupt powers that allows their influence to manifest. A few have a darkness at their core, something intangible that stains them from within...

To the human population the extent of the darkness present on Bromhead is unknown. The Taint has been off limits for enough time that to most citizens it is a place akin to folk tale nightmares; no real knowledge of it persists in wider society but there's plenty of superstition.

500 years have passed since the strange phenomena that caused the area to be quarantined occurred, by far enough time for knowledge and details from that time to have been forgotten, embellished or otherwise rendered the stuff of legends and nightmares. 

But the fact remains; there is something very wrong deep within that part of Bromhead, something that has a malevolent power and malign influence.

The Lauriger System Chart

120611 Bromhead is the third planet in the Lauriger System and the only one capable of supporting habitation.

Rae lies too close to the system's sun to be habitable, it's proximity has also hampered further exploration. Bellot is wreathed ina thick, cloying atmosphere that defies sensor probe's attempts to penetrate it from anything other than an actual landing. Extreme surface temperatures and the unstable geological structure of the world render it of little potential. Helena lies far to the edge of the system and its nature reflects the icy depths of the void in which it sits. Between Bromhead and Helena lie the Isembard Fields - a dense asteroid and dust belt.

Rumours that Helena was named after one of the ex-wives of the original pioneers have become part of Bromhead legend.

Bromhead's Finest

The forces of humanity that inhabit Bromhead are a hardy bunch.

Living on a far-flung frontier world where the might of the Imperium can sometimes feel very distant indeed has imbued the population with a natural stoic outlook and steely determination. 

Survival throughout the Imperium depends on a strong military, regardless of whether the threats are on or off world in origin. Bromhead has several military bases, each charged with a particular aspect of ensuring the safety of the population. 

Fort Chard

The headquarters of the Planetary Defence Force, Fort Chard is the largest complex by far with barracks, armouries and defences capable of withstanding orbital bombardment. It serves as the training facility for recruits destined for service elsewhere on planet or amongst the stars in regiments raised to meet Terra's Due. 

The Citadel

Situated on The Island, it is fitting that the elite forces of Bromhead closely guard the planet's elite citizens. The Home Guard (known amongst the other regiments as "The Islanders") take the best recruits and polish them until they're a formidable fighting force. Although most commonly seen in ceremonial uniform performing such duties as escorting dignitaries on trips to the mainland and parading, the Home Guard are far from being toy soldiers. Selection is tough and should the situation arise, they're more than capable of meeting the gravest of threats. 

A famous example is the defeat of a massive Ork landing on the Island, something that caught everyone (including the Orks it must be admitted) by surprise. Alarms sounding with reports that hordes of greenskins were wading ashore guns blazing were met with swift action from The Citadel. Valkyries raced squads of troops to positions in front of the Orks attempting a beach head, with the aircraft's rocket pods and heavy bolters raking the sand with punishing volleys. Heavy weapons teams were quickly dug in and pouring merciless fire down onto the onrushing horde, whist a daring flanking manouvre was undertaken by squadrons of Chimeras, amphibious themselves of course, engaging Ork assault boats from the sides and rear, preventing them from landing their cargo safely.

Although the losses to the Home Guard were significant, the Orks sustained nearly total casualties. Bodies and wreckage washed up on beaches around the Island for weeks afterwards, a reminder that nowhere is immune to danger.

Xenos Supression Task Force

Better known by the shortened "Task Force X-ray" these are some of the best forces on Bromhead and an assignment many a young officer cadet wants. 


Bromhead may not be much, but it's home. 

The third planet of the Lauriger System, Bromhead has a population of a little less than five million. Utterly tiny when compared to even small civilised worlds, Bromhead retains the frontier feel it had during the first decades of settlement. 

There are three continents; the primary landmass doesn't have an official name but is commonly known as "The Mainland", the second continent was known as Drake's Folly prior to its transformation by the Adeptus Mechanium (it is now known as The Forge if referred to at all) with the third continent the southern polar landmass named Kalten. Save for a few isolated military bases (themselves sparsely garrisoned) the Kalten is uninhabited.

The Planetary capital is officially named Bromhead, but to most citizens it's "The Island" - after the island it sits on, across a narrow strip of water from the mainland. In many regards it is a twin city, joined by a large bridge spanning the waterway that connects it to the largest city Chard's Landing. The ruling families, other elites and the notable official departments are all located in the city of Bromhead, but Chard's Landing is where the hustle and bustle of the planet can be found along with the bulk of the population. The main Ecclesiarchy offices and churches can be found there, better to ensure the obedience of the masses.

At the southern tip of the island is the town of Journey's End. Few outside the upper echelons of Bromhead society know much, if anything, of the place, for it is where the elite go to escape the drudgery of daily life in the Imperium. Originally it was where the founding fathers of Bromhead were laid to rest, with familial shrines soon established alongside their heralded ancestors. Modern day Journey's End is something of a playground for the rich and idle, something kept as secret as possible.

The planet's nutritional needs are met by the vast agri-complex known as The Farm. It is a processing and refining facility for the crops and livestock raised in the fertile lands which surround it. The Stonewater river feeds the flood plains and ensures harvests are bountiful.

Although the majority of citizens not engaged in military service (or indeed those sentenced to transportation to the Forge for a variety of transgressions) reside in Chard's Landing, there are many other settlements on the mainland. 

Tall Oaks sits in the western woods, south of the great lakes. The beauty of the location belies the frugality of the life in Tall Oaks. The 20,000 or so "Oakies" are tough, gruff and renowned for their pious lifestyle. The town militia, the Green Jackets, are expert forest fighters; capable of tracking enemies and living rough for weeks at a time. The militia sends younger members to the main PDF force as scout troops and foragers. 

Warner's Junction lies further north but might as well be on a different planet due to the differences between it and the forest town. A bustling town of 30,000 the population is often swollen by travelers heading north or by workers from The Farm rotating through on leave. As the main stopping off point for all points north, Warner's Junction has something of a "last chance" feel about it; bars, brothels, trading posts, all vie for the attention of wide-eyed travelers. Pilgrims rarely stop for long in the Junction...

Sweetness by contrast, is a place of almost total piety. Pilgrims journey here to seek solitude and visit the nearby shrine. Accurate figures for inhabitants cannot be obtained for there is no formal "town" so to speak, merely a collection of pilgrim settlements.

The greater north of the mainland attracts all manner of people; those seeking their fortune prospecting for archeotech, those seeking to escape the long arm of Imperial justice and everyone in between. Townships are established and may survive for a few years before succumbing to an exodus of population, natural disaster or more mysterious fates. 

Across the oceans

The second continent looked as inhospitable upon landing as it had in repeated flyovers. The chief families leading the initial expedition to the planet quickly disregarded it as a place not worth the effort of exploring or trying to tame. It was left to Carter Drake to lead a mission there, motivated by his feeling that his family were missing out on a share of the spoils from the settlement of the planet. If he wanted to ensure a place in Bromhead's history he achieved his aim, although not perhaps in the manner he would have wished...

The last survivors of his expedition returned to the mainland with tales of vast unforgiving sand in the north, with shifting "seas" that swallowed vehicles whole. The south was dense jungle, a nightmare to traverse and merciless in its effects on those trying. Drake himself had died when a wound became infected deep in the jungle. Drake's Folly would stick until the Priests of Mars came to claim the land.


The Adeptus Mechanicus were both more able to see the potential of the second continent and more able to realise it. Over the course of decades, the mountains were flattened and transformed into gargantuan mining complexes, whilst the golden sands were soon crisscrossed by mile upon mile of pipeline, transporting precious prometheum to processing facilities.

The number of Mechanium personel on planet is known only to them, for they have complete autonomy on the continent. Those making the trip from the mainland are never doing so of their own volition, for it is a terrible destination for them...

Far to the south, out of mind of the rest of the planet, lies Kalten, Bromhead's southern pole. Save for a few military posts (reserved for those far out of favour with high command, or those desperate to rise) there is little but a frozen, wind blasted landscape. Station Z only appears on one map, privately held by the Chief Marshal. What goes on there is a subject very few people discuss...

Welcome to Bromhead

In the grim darkness of the future, there is only war...

It is late in the 41st Millenium; humanity stands beseiged on all sides; the threat from the forces of chaos grows ever greater, the tide of xenos races encroaching on the Imperium of Man seemingly cannot be stemmed. The great devourer lurks in the blackness of space, always hungry, whilst an as yet unnamed power is awakening from eons of slumber.
Across the galaxy, the forces of mankind turn to meet the menace head on. Chapters of marines prepare battle hymnals and march to war, whilst countless millions of Imperial Army divisions stand firm to face whatever comes. Cadia, Armageddon, these planets are well known and their worth undisputed. But other systems, other planets, some too small or remote to be known by the many, face the darkness with as much to lose as their more well known sisters. 

The planet Bromhead, classification 120611 in the Adeptus Administratum files, lies in the Lauriger System in the Segmentum Obscurus. First settled in M40 by an exploration fleet seeking resources to feed the ever greedy Imperium, its population is small but stoic. A mere speck when measured against the vastness of the galaxy, Bromhead still contributes its share towards the greater whole. Whether it’s raising regiments to fight in the Emperor’s name many light years from home, or sending men to fight for the security of Bromhead itself, each task, each challenge, is met with the same determination.

We are men of Bromhead. We do not falter, we will not fail.

This motto is engraved on the entrance to the great hall in Fort Chard, Bromhead’s Planetary Defence Force headquarters. It is whispered by the warriors who pass through it as they march into battle.

It is an oath they would do well to uphold, for the threats to humanity are much closer to home than many realise...