It is the Inquisition's duty to seek out and destroy threats that other Imperial institutions are not equipped - or permitted - to deal with. Such things primarily include the Daemonic, the Alien & the Heretical, and in their duty the Inquisition is entirely autonomous and only accountable to themselves, the Emperor, and the High Lords of Terra.
The Inquisition is - predictably - composed of individuals knows as Inquisitors. Inquisitors are exceptional individuals that have been imbued with near limitless power as an Inquisitor has the Emperor-given right to requisition any resource in the Imperium for their own use, be it a platoon of Imperial Guardsmen or an Imperial Navy Battlecruiser. However with some Imperial institutions that are imbued with a degree of legal independence - such as chapters of the Adeptus Astartes - it may be more politically prudent for the Inquisitor to request rather than demand. Many Inquisitors are also psykers, for such powers can make a human exceptional far beyond normal physical limitations.
This isn't to say that the Inquisition's members work alone though. Every Inquisitor will have their own semi-permanent network of underlings, spies & servants (many of whom could have no knowledge of their employer's true nature) in addition to anything requisitioned specifically for the objective at hand. These Inquisitorial henchmen are the eyes, ears & muscle of their Inquisitor, and the most exceptional of these henchmen may one day rise to the rank of Inquisitor themselves. Inquisitorial henchmen are often already members of other Imperial institutions before being requisitioned by Inquisitors, such as Adeptus Arbites, Imperial Guardsmen or even Adepta Sororitas (be they Militant, Hospitaller, Dialogous or Famulous).
Those henchmen earmarked as potential Inquisitors are given the rank of Interrogator, and serve as their Inquisitor's direct seconds. Sometimes particularly exceptional Progena may be earmarked by the Inquisition upon their selection day, and will be made into Interrogators and expected to learn-on-the-job.
Ascending to the rank of Inquisitor can only be achieved through the consent of other Inquisitors, and this is usually achieved through long years of valuable service as an Interrogator.
Especially experienced Inquisitors can be promoted to Inquisitor Lord (with the consent of a council of existing Inquisitor Lords). This gives them authority over standard Inquisitors and increases their political sway behind the scenes.
The Inquisition is split into a large number of different Ordos, each one defined by which foes they primarily focus on. The Ordo system is generally quite loose with Inquisitors able to switch Ordos freely or belong to several at once, and all Inquisitors willingly fight threats outside their Ordo's purview when necessary.
There are as many Ordos as there are threats to the Imperium. Which is to say there is a functionally limitless number of Ordos. However most of these Ordos are limited to small areas of space where the specific threat they combat is located. Galaxy-wide Ordos battle much more general threats, and the largest even have their own Chambers Militant (a military organisation that it most-often calls upon when large-scale military action is required).
The largest Ordo, that battles The Threat Within. The Ordo Hereticus focuses on battling spiritual corruption from within the Imperium, heresy. Unearthing heretical cults, investigating any potential corruption of important Imperial officials and hunting down rogue psykers & mutants are the main objectives of the Ordo Hereticus, and this is usually reflected in the Inquisitors that are a part of the Ordo. They tend to utilise subtler methods of infiltration and subterfuge to discover the presence of any corruption, and when found they employ things like sanctified flame and use piety as a weapon.
The Ordo Hereticus' Chambers Militant are the Orders Militant of the Adepta Sororitas, the Sisters of Battle. These pious warriors are all-but-immune to the temptations of corruption and fervently purge heresy with flamer, melta & bolter. Such is their faith that they can even use it as a tangible weapon, weilding sanctified energy that defies and destroys the unclean.
For these exact reasons, many Ordo Hereticus Inquisitors choose to include Sisters of Battle in their permanent retinues.
The second largest Ordo, that battles The Threat Without. As their name would suggest, the Ordo Xenos deals with the threat of the Alien. It is their duty to investigate any xenos influences upon the Imperium, which could be genestealer cults, dark eldar infiltrators, human traitors, or worse. Ordo Xenos inquisitors tend to have a large array of skills & knowledge to use against any number of xenos races, and radical Ordo Xenos Inquisitors may even utilise xenos technology.
The Ordo Xenos' Chambers Militant is the Deathwatch, a chapter of Adeptus Astartes composed of astartes drawn from every other chapter in the Imperium, typically some of the best the chapters can offer. The Deathwatch are the most proficient alien fighters in the galaxy, and a Deathwatch kill-team (usually 4-10 astartes) is just as capable against a mob of Orks as they are against a squad of Eldar Aspect Warriors.
The Deathwatch themselves undergo independent operations against the xenos, but when requisitioned by an Inquisitor any number of kill-teams will be put under direct command of said Inquisitor.
Those who fight the The Threat Beyond. The Ordo Malleus is substantially smaller than the Ordo Hereticus and Ordo Xenos. However it is arguably the most important Ordo, for its duty is to combat the daemonic and warp-spawned, which count as some of the most terrible & horrifying threats to humanity possible. Inquisitors of the Ordo Malleus will investigate any reports or suspicions of warp influence, which could be anything from a single warp-spawned beast stalking a hive to a full blown daemonic incursion.
Ordo Malleus Inquisitors tend to be very martial individuals as investigation of the daemonic will invariably lead to direct combat with the daemonic, and only the finest warriors can best a daemon of chaos in battle. Through the extensive use of sanctified weapons & armour, martial skill, and the power of faith (and potentially psychic power too), Ordo Malleus Inquisitors send the foul beasts of the warp back where they came from. Ordo Malleus Inquisitors have a host of tools at their disposal to best the daemonic including tomes of forbidden lore that could drive an ordinary man mad, and ancient esoteric technologies like vortex grenades and tesseract labyrinths.
The Chambers Militant of the Ordo Malleus are the highly secretive Grey Knights. The Grey Knights are a special chapter of Adeptus Astartes based on Saturn's moon of Titan, and composed entirely of psykers that have been augmented into space marines. Equipped with the finest armour, weapons and technology in the Imperium courtesy of nearby Mars, the Grey Knights are the finest warriors in the Imperium. Through their extreme faith and strength of will they are also the most incorruptible, and in their 10,000 year history not a single Grey Knight has ever fallen to the side of Chaos.
Like the Deathwatch the Grey Knights too operate independently against the daemonic, as their exceptionally powerful Librarians foresee daemonic incursions before they happen. However many daemonic incursions are instead brought to their attention by the Ordo Malleus. To aid their response time to these dire situations the Grey Knights have regional bases throughout the galaxy and possess the fastest capital ships in the Imperium; their sleek, Mars-built strike cruisers capable of responding to threats hundreds of lightyears away in a matter of days.
Widespread Minor OrdosEdit
The Ordo Astartes monitors Space Marine chapters for corruption, and hunts down renegade Astartes.
The Ordo Machinum monitors the Adeptus Mechanicus for tech-heresy, and hunts down hereteks. Many members of the Ordo Machinum were originally techpriests themselves.
Monitors the Ecclesiarchy for corruption, heresy, and violations of the Decree Passive.
The Inquisition in Sector DeusEdit
As a frontier sector, Sector Deus has a significant Inquisitorial presence. The moon of Nobis - which orbits the Sector Capital of Tachion Primaris - is Inquisitorial property and functions as their official base of operations in the sector (though every inquisitor will have their own secret safehouses throughout the sector).
Furthermore the much higher presence of xenos and non-Imperial humans on the Imperial frontier produces a larger proportion of radical Inquisitors in the Ordo Xenos & Ordo Hereticus when compared with more stable sectors.
The Deus ConclaveEdit
This is the high council of the Inquisition in Sector Deus, that determines the direction and priorities of the Inquisition in the sector. The Deus Conclave is composed of the dozen most powerful Inquisitor Lords in Sector Deus, and through their authority they can command battlefleets and burn subsectors at will.
The High Conclave of Demi-Segmentum Obscurus-7dEdit
This council of Lord Inqusitors is based in Sector Morrux and is the highest Inquisitorial authority in the Demi-Segmentum, holding authority over a massive region of space.
The one thing that sets Sector Deus apart from most other frontier sectors is the permanent warpstorm knows as The Grave. This warpstorm is a gaping hole directly into the warp which contains a festering cluster of daemon worlds inhabited by heretics, daemons, chaos astartes and worse. Because of this there is a large concentration of Ordo Malleus and Ordo Hereticus Inquisitors on Malta, the fortress world responsible for containing the frequent breakout attempts from the foul denizens of the Grave. These same Inquisitors also travel across Subsector Tyranus and beyond when they need to hunt down Grave escapees.
This craftworld is located within the bounds of Sector Deus, and its generally agreed state of neutrality with the Imperium has led to an unusual situation for the local Ordo Xenos, and one of the first things many Ordo Xenos personnel in Deus learn is how to differentiate between Wuxidian Eldar and the far more nefarious Dark Eldar.
Puritan Inquisitors retain their hatred of Craftworld Eldar just as they hate all xenos races, but most are sensible enough to realise that acting on this hatred would be incredibly foolish.
Meanwhile on the other end of the scale are radical Inquisitors. The netrual relationship between Wuxide and the Imperium, coupled with the general willingness of radicals to work with xenos and/or xenotech, means there can often be a high level of cooperation between the Sector Deus Ordo Xenos and Wuxide Craftworld. Ordo Xenos Inquisitors often interact with Wuxidian Eldar for a number of reasons. Most often to share information on subjects of mutual interest, but there may be other reasons such as an Inquisitor exchanging recovered soulstones for Eldar technology. It is not even unusual for a radical Ordo Xenos Inquisitor in Sector Deus to have a Wuxidian Eldar among their retinue, at least for a short time.
Notable Inquisitors of Sector DeusEdit
- Asimor Dero - A member of the Deus Conclave. Dero is a by-the-books moderate puritan and member of the Ordo Hereticus who hails from Tachion Primaris. Asimor Dero has served as Master of Nobis for many decades due to his strong talents for logsitics and administration, as well as his extremely broad knowledge base and high level of intelligence. He is also a minor psyker with a talent for foresight, which helps his logistical concerns.
- Harkon Braulasz - A member of the Deus Conclave. Highly puritan member of the Ordo Malleus who was born on Malta and has spent most of his Inquisitorial career there. Braulasz is most at-home in the heat of battle obliterating daemons with his enormous daemonhammer and clad in his warded silver terminator armour. Braulasz is not a psyker and treats them with considerable suspicion, having witnessed many psykers burst into daemons before his eyes over his long career. He values martial skill & purity, so his immediate retinue heavily features storm troopers & sororitas.
- Aurmand Leccu - A member of the Deus Conclave. Leccu is a radical & mysterious member of the Ordo Hereticus that has no central area of operations. Leccu utilises advanced disguises to infiltrate heretic cells and not even his fellow Inquisitor Lords know his true face. He has unearthed many heretical cults across the sector thanks to his exceptional infiltration skills, but this has led to accusations that he becomes more like those he impersonates with every success.
- Tomas Garant - A member of the Deus Conclave and a radical member of the Ordo Xenos, Garant originates from the maiden world of Serenia. He is known as one of the foremost experts on Eldar in the Sector, as he has had a large number of dealings with Wuxidian Eldar over his long career and has even seen Harlequin Troupes perform their displays on multiple occasions. He is a moderately powerful psyker and uses an Eldar powersword (custom made by Wuxide in exchange for a hundred soulstones Garant spend a decade recovering from various sources), to channel this power in combat. He is famous for leading a combined force of Storm Troopers & Aspect Warriors alongside a Wuxidian Exarch to save Shield Tertius from a daemonic incursion.
- Hermiona Valdez - A member of the High Conclave of Demi-Segmentum Obscurus-7d who acts as the overseer for all Ordo Machinum activities in the Demi-Segmentum. She has maintained a high level of interest in the Nestorian Learners and their contention with the more orthodox Martian priesthood.
- Abraham Dsotoyav - A member of the High Conclave of Demi-Segmentum Obscurus-7d who acts as the overseer for all Ordo Sanctorum activities in the Demi-Segmentum. The Iron Monks liberal interpretation of the Decree Passive has become a matter of his attention.
- Carmine Zaloa - Radical Ordo Malleus Inquisitor from Rampage who believes strongly in using the weapons of the great enemy against them. He wields a daemonsword in combat and carries tomes of forbidden knowledge, and his psychic abilities help unlock their true potential. Though many within the local Inquisition - including Inquisitor Lord Braulasz - question his methods, they have brought about the banishment of dozens of lesser daemons and even a keeper of secrets over Zaloa's career.
- Fjola Torborn - A young member of the Ordo Malleus who hails from Mormark. Fjola was taken by the blackships in her infancy when she was identified as an extremely high-level psyker. Some rumours claim that her classification was fradulently downgraded from Alpha+ to Alpha by parties unknown to prevent her immediate execution. Other rumours question the origins of her astounding psychic power, with conjectures ranging from genetic experiments to Eldar lineage. After being sanctioned she was taken by the Inquisition where her impressive psychic powers ensured her rapid ascension through the ranks, and now she serves as a full Inquisitor in the Ordo Malleus. She appears as a frail figure clad in simple robes & gripping a glowing staff and Torborn is loathe to wield her full powers should they consume her. But even when restraining herself she can summon storms, spew flame and completely disintegrate lesser beings.
- Dran 'Faceless' Hesten - A radical Ordo Hereticus Inquisitor who went missing in 331.M41 after his ship was lost in the warp.
- Adriana Vollanis - Puritan Inquisitor of the Ordo Hereticus who hails from Solstreim. Though still young, Vollanis has burned several heretical cults with her inferno pistol and Sororitas/Crusader retinue across the Sector, and she specialises in hive city habs. She abhors mutants and psykers, though grudgingly accepts the necessity of the latter & Navigators.
- Onager Reardan - Puritan Ordo Hereticus Inquisitor that has spent his entirety of his long career fighting the festering cults that inhabit the lower hives of his home planet of Tachion Primaris. With his retinue of pious Arbites and henchmen, Rearden is thought to have a purge-tally that numbers in the hundreds of thousands.
- Alladyc Sumet - A puritan Inquisitor of both the Ordo Hereticus and Ordo Sanctorum who was born on Artoria. Sumet has spent much of his career investigating the chaos-held shrine world of Esboro and trying to ensure such a fate does not befall any other world by investigating any Ecclesiarchal cells he deems suspicious.
- Laertos Karr - A puritan Ordo Xenos Inquisitor who investigated the aftermath of the genestealer infestation on San Larion in 351.M41
- Becka Xi'ang* - A moderate Ordo Xenos Inquisitor who hails from Emperors Rest. Xi'ang has spent most of her career investigating Cygnoid activity in the sector, scouring the void and interrogating Cygnoids she finds on independent worlds to try and find their hidden refuges. Since the destruction of much of the Cygnoid Remnant in 351.M41 Xi'ang has moved to a more supervisory role, setting up and overseeing cells on numerous planets to monitor things rather than pursuing the single threat of Cygnoids. She is also a psyker of moderate power, and favours using a force sword & lightning in combat.
- Harrison Lye - Moderate radical Ordo Xenos Inquisitor hailing from Nymeria who primarily works in Subsector Cryptus, working to keep the Ork clans on the southern edge destabilised to prevent them from forming a waaagh. He is a very militaristic & grizzled soldier, and performs extended multi-month operations in enemy territory. His retinue is known to include a pair of Wuxidian Rangers - as the craftworld shares his goal of keeping the Orks in disarray - and they assist his retinue of veteran Imperial Guard scouts from Volitair, Argul IV and Rampage as they conduct pinpoint strikes on Ork encampments.
- Alarissa Mervete - Secretive, scholarly and radical Ordo Xenos Inquisitor from Kinteros who is known for her highly confidential research projects into xenos species. While her experiments have produced a wealth of information about various xenos species - in both their anatomy and society - that has proven very useful to the Imperium, the secrecy surrounding her methods and ethics consistently raises concerns amongst her puritan fellows. It does not help matters all the personnel she requisitions are returned with their memories wiped, be they Guardsmen, Storm Troopers, Sororitas or even Astartes. Some accuse her of using these personnel for unsanctioned operations to capture xenos subjects, more vehement puritans claim she uses the personnel for her own heretical experiments. However her loyal and extremely effective retinue has prevented, subverted, or eliminated any attempts at spying or interfering with the Inquisitor, and the strategic benefits her discoveries give prevent the Deus Conclave from sanctioning overt action against her.