Asurmen, whose name means the "Hand of Asuryan," is the first and oldest of the legendary Aeldari Phoenix Lords, those most ancient of Exarchs from whom the Aspect Warriors themselves were created and who are the absolute masters of their Aspect's form of combat.
Each is a demigod of battle whose legend spans the stars, imbued with supernatural powers that grant them the ability to cheat death. Asurmen himself is the living embodiment of the warrior, just as the Avatar of Khaine is the incarnation of the Bloody-Handed God himself.
It was Asurmen who founded the first of the Aspect Shrines, the Shrine of Asur, the forerunner of the Dire Avengers Aspect. Asurmen is the forefather of the Dire Avengers, most noble and vengeful of all the Aspects. Today, this Warrior Aspect is the most common amongst the Craftworld Aeldari, and their shrines are the largest amongst all the Craftworlds.
In the Aeldari mythic cycles Asuryan, the Phoenix King, is the chief and greatest of all the Aeldari Gods and the king of the Aeldari pantheon. Asurmen, also known as the Hand of Asuryan, was the penultimate warrior of all the Aeldari, for his extraordinary powers placed him at the Pinnacle of Might.
Prior to the Fall of the Eldar, Asurmen was an Aeldari originally from the world of Eidafaeron named Iliathin, who lived an uneventful and boring life there like all his kind. Before the Fall of the Eldar, he was skeptical of the prophecies of doom for the Aeldari Empire being spread by those Aeldari who would become the Exodites.
Iliathin's brother Tethesis desired to join the Exodites in their self-imposed exile from the empire, but his skeptical sibling refused to leave Eidafaeron. When the Fall of the Aeldari finally began with the birth of Slaanesh, Ilaithin and his brother both somehow survived the calamity and waged a desperate struggle for survival amid the ruins of their world, now overrun with daemons. When Tethesis was possessed by a daemon, Iliathin was forced to kill him. Afterwards, he managed to find shelter at an old temple which daemons the daemons refused to approach because the presence of the dying Aeldari gods could still be felt there.
Contemplating suicide, Iliathin lived alone in the temple for several Terran years. His life was ultimately given new purpose by the feral Aeldari child Faraethil. Though initially shunning the girl, when Faraethil was later assaulted by the hedonistic Aeldari survivors now calling themselves Drukhari, Iliathin renamed himself Asurmen after the god Asuryan and saved her. Asurmen agreed to take the girl as his disciple and they left the ruins of Eidafaeron behind, eventually gathering to them more like-minded survivors of the Fall.
Asurmen and his followers, including Jain Zar, Baharroth, Fuegan, and Arhra, established a new home on a barren world they named Asur and called themselves the "Asurya," the children of Asur. There, he created the Path of the Warrior and the first of what would become the Aspect Shrines, the Dire Avengers, which later became the most common of all the Asuryani Aspect Warriors.
Asurmen found that he could not give up the Path of the Warrior to follow a different Asuryani Path, for he desired to use his skills to protect what remained of his species after the birth of the Chaos God Slaanesh, "She Who Thirsts." From the Shrine of Asur sprang the first Aspect Warriors, and the Path of the Warrior was opened for the very first time to all Aeldari, who had now come to name themselves the "Eldar," a lesser name for a diminished people.
Asurmen then travelled amongst more of the different Craftworlds than any other member of his race, teaching those Eldar who wanted to learn the Dire Avengers' suite of combat skills. Those Eldar learned at the feet of their master, and in turn they assumed the mantle of Exarchs before spreading throughout the galaxy. The first Exarchs, the Asurya, the children of Asurmen, were the greatest of his students and went on to become the Phoenix Lords of the other Aspect Shrines, the first masters of the other specialised Eldar combat disciplines. It was then that the different Warrior Aspects were formalised within the culture of the Eldar Craftworlds, taking as their model the skills and teachings of their founders.
The Eldar world of Asur was later destroyed by the consequences of the Fall and Asurmen's first incarnation ended in battle against the Chaos legions of Slaanesh trying to defend his homeworld, but this was not the end of Asurmen. There would always be another hero drawn to his mould who would take up the armoured suit and sacred battle-gear of the Hand of Asuryan once more.
Asurmen joined the Asurya in founding Aspect Shrines and raised more shrines on more Craftworlds than any other Phoenix Lord. His shrines were all dedicated to his own varied combat skills, considered the most well-balanced amongst all the Aspects and his Aspect Warriors became the Dire Avengers. Soon he vanished again, but tales of his deeds persisted throughout the passing millennia. He was reported fighting against the forces of the Eldar's Great Enemy in the depths of the Eye of Terror. He was also seen on the galaxy's rim in the Eastern Fringe slayign the agents of Chaos, and tales of his valour spread from Craftworld to Craftworld. His actions have even become legends among the "lesser races" such as Mankind.
Asurmen appeared in the late 41st Millennium under the command of his fellow Phoenix Lord Jain Zar, who is now pledged to the service of Ynnead, the awakening Aeldari God of the Dead. Asurmen took part in the battle to defend the Ynnari against the Thousand Sons Traitor Legion and Tzeentchian daemons in the Webway, though he vanished from sight to destinations unknown in the midst of the battle.
- Ancient Phoenix Lord Armour - Asurmen's ancient suit of Exarch Armour makes use of vambraces that possess integrated Shuriken Catapults. These weapons are connected in such a way that they can be fired by either hand without sacrificing accuracy. This arrangement also leaves his hand free so that he can grasp his Diresword with both hands.
- Sword of Asur - Asurmen carries the first known Eldar Diresword, called the Sword of Asur, which contains the Spirit Stone of his long-dead brother, Tethesis, who was killed by a daemon, that he might continue to fight against the minions of the Great Enemy until the end of time.
- Master Crafted Shuriken Pistol - Despite being the Phoenix Lord of a Warrior Aspect more renowned for delivering punishing short-range volleys of fire, Asurmen is a phenomenal opponent at close quarters, effortlessly switching between one-handed and two-handed fighting styles with the Sword of Asur. This master-crafted Shuriken Pistol serves him well as a secondary weapon when he favours a one-handed fighting style.
The rune worn by the Phoenix Lord Asurmen is an ancient symbol of the Eldar warrior spirit. Representing the balance between the fury of emotion and the cold surety of skill, it is synonymous with the Path of the Warrior.
- Asurmen: Hand of Asuryan (Novel) by Gav Thorpe
- Codex: Eldar Craftworlds (7th Edition), pp. 15, 77-78, 84, 288-290
- Codex: Eldar (6th Edition), pg. 56
- Codex: Eldar (4th Edition), pp. 30, 55
- Codex: Eldar (3rd Edition), pg. 43
- Codex: Eldar (2nd Edition), pp. 37, 82
- Iyanden: A Codex: Eldar Supplement (7th Edition), pg. 83
- The Gathering Storm - Part II - Fracture of Biel-Tan (7th Edition), pp. 22-32
- Warhammer Rulebook (5th Edition), pg. 156
- White Dwarf 172 (US), "The Eldar: The Path of the Warrior - Dire Avengers", pp. 5-16
- White Dwarf 138 (US), "Alaitoc Craftworld Eldar Army - Dire Avenger Exarch", pp. 20-29
- White Dwarf 127 (US), "Eldar" by Rick Priestley, Jes Goodwin, William King and Lindsey D. Le Doux Paton, pp. 13-52
|Arhra • Asurmen • Baharroth • Fuegan • Irillyth • Jain Zar • Karandras • Maugan Ra|