House Mortan is an Imperial Knight house of the Questor Imperialis that is strongly aligned with the Imperium of Man. The antecedents of House Mortan settled the inhospitable Knight World of Kimdaria, the Black Planet, during the early stages of the Age of Strife.
By the time the antecedents of House Mortan had arrived upon Kimdaria, the mysterious nebula known as the Black Pall that surrounded the planet had grown unexpectedly dense.
Fell creatures, already accustomed to the world's dim light, roamed the ink-black landscapes, and it was only through the skill and dedication of the colonists' Knights that the beasts were driven back and the first settlements established.
Kimdaria was only rediscovered in the late 35th Millennium by the Imperium. Due to the millennia of constant patrols to keep the Death World's forests clear of predatory behemoths, the Knights of House Mortan have come to place great value upon close combat. The House motto is, "In war, show no mercy."
During the early stages of the Age of Strife, Kimdaria, the Black Planet, was not a place any sane human would have chosen to settle, as the world was located within a nebula known as the Black Pall that kept it perpetually darkened.
Yet that was where the antecedents of House Mortan had been sent during the Stellar Exodus of Mankind from Terra. Against that world of darkness and fell creatures they strove, the power of their Knights alone holding back the tides of beasts that stalked that nightmare landscape, and they eventually colonised the planet.
For millennia after the Great Crusade the Black Pall lingered over Kimdaria and its star system -- not until late M35 did the mysterious black nebula partially dissipate, letting in a few slanting rays of sunshine and also allowing the long-lost planet to be rediscovered by Mankind. What they found was a stern and ritualistically ordered world, a place where only towering walls held off the monster-haunted darkness.
From out of heavy gates strode the Knights of House Mortan, for only constant patrols kept the twisted forests clear of hulking, predatory behemoths. In response to the thick cover and eternal twilight, the Knights of House Mortan placed a premium upon close combat -- a tendency that holds to this day.
The grim, angst-ridden Nobles expect all battles will eventually come down to murderous work with their roaring Reaper Chainswords and pulsating Thunderstrike Gauntlets; indeed, this is just how the fierce and taciturn warriors want it.
- Defence of Hexis Alpha (Unknown Date.M41) - Along with the Knights of House Althalos and House Thalmus, House Mortan came to the aid of the Hive World of Hexis Alpha, when a sudden Warp rift spawned a tide of daemons across its surface. More than 100 billion lives were saved, due to their successful efforts in defending the Hive World from the daemons.
- Talledus War (Unknown Date.M42) - House Mortan Knights commanded by Sir Dirkwald accompanied the Gladius Strike Force of the Black Templars' Rutherian Crusade in the counterattack upon the Iron Warriors forces assaulting the Fortress World of Ghreddask in the Talledus System. The Knights aided Castellan Dramos in his successful suicidal assault on the Soul Harvester fortress-factory Scarax Krond. This action blunted the Iron Warriors' momentum in seizing control of that vital world.
Notable House Mortan Knights
- Pride of Blackcrag - Knight Warden of Sir Gerrolt, current High King of House Mortan.
- Black Heart - Knight Errant of Sir Dirkwald.
- War Strider - Knight Gallant of Sir Ludwig.
Notable House Mortan Personnel
- Sir Gerrolt - Sir Gerrolt is the current High King of House Mortan. In House Mortan, high-ranking Knights and their positions within the house are identified by the pattern of yellow bands upon their hull; the lone stripe upon Gerrolt's Knight proclaims him as the High King of Kimdaria. Despite the bold heraldry of his Knight Warden, Pride of Blackcrag and his lofty station, Sir Gerrolt is dour, even by the standards of his house. Perhaps part of the reason can be traced to the Throne Mechanicum Gerrolt bonded with centuries ago -- tragedy and loss haunt this ancient artefact the way fell beasts lurk within the dark forests of Kimdaria. The motto of House Mortan has long been "In war, show no mercy", a grim phrase for a grim warrior people, and whatever dark whispers might fill Sir Gerrolt's mind, such things are forgotten in the savage joys of battle. Whatever dark whispers might fill Sir Gerrolt's mind, they do not seem to hamper his ability to rule over Kimdaria's people and lead House Mortan's Knights in battle, nor diminish the vehemence with which he destroys the enemy. Blasting rockets into the distance, blazing away with his Avenger Gatling Cannon and smiting foes with his Thunderstrike Gauntlet, Gerrolt steers the Pride of Blackcrag into the thick of the fighting, slaughtering all that fall under its shadow.
- Sir Dirkwald - Sir Dirkwald recently completed his thousandth watch-patrol on Kimdaria, allowing the Noble to serve off-planet. Dirkwald is known to be ferocious yet dour in personality. As a result, Sir Dirkwald was among the House Mortan forces assigned to support the Rutherian Crusade of the Black Templars Chapter of Space Marines. A force of Knights under the command of Dirkwald fought with the Gladius Strike Force led by Castellan Dramos to blunt the assault of the Iron Warriors led by Warpsmith Etrogar upon the Fortress World of Ghreddask during the Talledus War.
- Sir Ludwig - Sir Ludwig is a long-serving war hero of House Mortan. His Knight Gallant, War Strider, bears a banded weapon, denoting a dozen Titan-class kills.
The colours of House Mortan are black, red and yellow.
Darksome like the house it represents, the House Mortan crest bears a stylised tusk-boar, one of the fierce creatures of Kimdaria, and a half-Aquila representing its allegiance to the Imperium as one of the Questor Imperialis.
Livery and Honour Markings
Mortan adopted red as the sign of its allegiance to the Imperium, and so carry this shade and the associated Aquila on its Knight suits' minor plates. Like many knightly houses, all members of this family have broadly similar personal heraldry. In House Mortan, the ranks of the Exalted Court are marked in yellow bands; the lone stripe upon Sir Gerrolt's Knight proclaims him as the High King. Alternating bands painted on a Knight's weapon, such as a Reaper Chainsword, denotes the number of Titan-class kills to their credit.
- Codex: Imperial Knights (8th Edition), pp. 32-33
- Codex: Imperial Knights (7th Edition) (Digital Edition), pp. 46-47
- Codex: Imperial Knights (6th Edition) (Digital Edition), pg. 44
- Psychic Awakening - Faith & Fury (8th Edition), pp. 16-17