"You are Astartes indeed, and that will never alter. But you are a Death Guard no longer. You are a ghost, a figure that stands between light and dark, trapped amid the grey. And I have need of such a man."
Nathaniel Garro was originally the battle-captain of the Death Guard Legion's 7th Great Company and later became the leader or Agentia Primus of a band of Space Marines gathered from all the Legions known as the Knights-Errant who remained loyal to the Emperor of Mankind and were directed on missions chosen by Malcador the Sigillite, the Regent of Terra.
Garro was also the leader of "The Seventy," the 70 surviving Loyalist Astartes who alone of the Death Guard Legion escaped the massacre of Loyalists at Isstvan III aboard the frigate Eisenstein to bring word of the Warmaster Horus' betrayal of the Emperor to Terra.
Garro held to the original tenets of his Legion when many of his battle-brothers chose to follow Horus, their traitorous Primarch Mortarion, and First Captain Calas Typhon's decision to serve Chaos and overthrow the Emperor, installing Horus as the new emperor to rule over the Imperium of Man.
After his arrival at Terra, Garro would be tasked by the Emperor's regent, the psyker Malcador the Sigillite, with gathering other Loyalist Astartes from all of the Legions, Traitor and Loyalist alike, who would wear the heraldry of the Sigillite himself.
Several of these Astartes, the Sigillite's "Knights-Errant," would become the core leadership of a new Imperial institution composed of Astartes and Imperial nobles of "an inquisitive nature" that would serve as the precursor of the Inquisition and the secret Grey Knights Chapter of Space Marines.
Like so many of the Astartes of the Traitor Legions who remained loyal to the Emperor at the start of the Horus Heresy, Nathaniel Garro was born on Terra, in the small techno-barbarian state of Albia, situated in the area of southeastern Europe near what once had been the ancient nation-state of Albania.
Garro was one of the few remaining Terran Astartes of the XIVth Legion when it had still been named the Dusk Raiders, so known because of their signature tactic of attacking a foe at nightfall.
Garro had joined the XIVth Legion before anyone had even known the name of Barbarus, the future homeworld of Mortarion and the Death Guard. In those early years of the Great Crusade, the XIVth Legion had no primarch but the Emperor Himself.
The Dusk Raiders had worn armour without the green trim of the later Legion. It was the dull white of old marble, their right arm and shoulders coloured in a deep, glistening crimson.
The symbology of the armour showed their foes who they truly were -- the Emperor's red right hand, relentless and unstoppable. Many enemies had thrown down their weapons the moment the sun dipped beneath the horizon, rather than dare to fight them.
But that too had changed. When the Emperor's sons, the great primarchs, had been sundered from His side and scattered across the galaxy, the Dusk Raiders joined their brother Space Marine Legions and the Master of Mankind in the Great Crusade that began the Age of the Imperium.
Garro had been there as the Emperor crossed the galaxy in search of His lost sons -- Sanguinius, Ferrus Manus, Roboute Guilliman, Magnus the Red and all the rest. With each reunion, the Lord of Mankind gave His sons the command of the Astartes forces that had been created in their image.
When at last the Emperor came to Barbarus and discovered the gaunt warrior foundling named Mortarion who led its oppressed people, He knew He had located the primarch of the XIVth Legion.
On the day of Mortarion's coronation as primarch, a good majority of the XIVth Legion had been of Garro's stock, warriors born on Terra or within the confines of the Sol System, but slowly that number had dwindled, and as new recruits joined the Death Guard's fold they came only from Barbarus.
But by the last days of the Great Crusade in the early 31st Millennium, only a comparative handful of Terrans remained in the Legion.
In his darkest moments, Garro imagined a time when there would be none of his kinsmen left amongst the XIVth, and with their deaths the traditions of the old Dusk Raiders would finally fade away.
He feared that moment, for when it came to pass he knew that something of the Legion's noble character would die as well.
His refusal to relinquish these old Terran traditions and "high-handed" leadership caused a rift between himself and some of the Barbarus-born captains of the Legion, who often referred to the staunch and reserved battle-captain as "Straight-Arrow Garro."
Many of the newer Astartes inducted from Barbarus felt that before their primarch had brought new blood to their Legion, there were many rituals and habits that served only to hold the Death Guard back.
Yet the old ways of the XIVth Legion were fading, and there were few among the senior battle-brothers of the Death Guard who deigned to keep the careworn traditions of the Legion alive. The slow shifting of mood had begun in the months following the Emperor's decision to retire to Terra from the Great Crusade after the conclusion of the great offensive against the Orks during the Ullanor Crusade, whereupon He had bestowed the rank of Warmaster upon Horus, the primarch of the Luna Wolves Legion.
The Emperor further compounded this rift by His refusal to recognise the growing fraternity of the warrior lodges within the Legions, despite being offered membership on multiple occasions.
The Death Guard differed from many of their brother Legions in the manner of their command structure and rank system. Tradition had it that the XIVth Legion should never number more than 7 Great Companies, although those divisions held far more warriors than those of other Astartes cohorts like the Space Wolves or the Blood Angels.
Whilst many Legions had the tradition of giving the honorific of "first captain" to the commanding officer of the elite 1st Company, the Death Guard also held two more privileged titles, to be bestowed upon the leaders of the 2nd and 7th Great Companies, respectively.
Thus, although they held no actual seniority over one another, Captain Ignatius Grulgor of the 2nd Great Company could carry the rank of "commander" if he so wished, just as Garro, as captain of the 7th Great Company, was known as "battle-captain."
Garro's particular honorific dated back to the Wars of Unification, to a moment when the mark of distinction had been handed to a XIVth Legion officer of the 7th Great Company by the Emperor Himself. Garro was proud to bear the same honourific centuries later.
Battle-Captain Garro was a seasoned Astartes Veteran of multiple campaigns of Imperial Compliance who had fought besides the Astartes of several other Legions and formed bonds with a select few amongst them.
He knew Captain Garviel Loken of the Luna Wolves from when the Death Guard fought alongside them during the Krypt Campaign against the Orks. Garro was also close friends with Captain Saul Tarvitz of the Emperor's Children.
The two Astartes shared a close bond as "honour brothers." There were few men outside the Death Guard that Garro would ever have given the distinction of being called "brother," but Tarvitz was one of them.
Tarvitz had earned Garro's friendship during the Preaixor Campaign and proven to him that for all the reputation of Fulgrim's Astartes as overconfident peacocks, there were warriors amongst the ranks of the Emperor's Children that embodied the ideals of the Imperium.
In recognition of their bond, the two Astartes had a small eagle carved into their power armour's ceramite by knifepoint, a sign of the battle debt they owed one another. When the two clasped each other's wrists their vambraces would form the sign of the Imperial Aquila.
Towards the end of the Great Crusade, Battle-Captain Garro earned high accolades during the Jorgall Persecution, for his actions against those psychically powerful xenos when he fought alongside a cadre from the Sisters of Silence.
He was singled out by his Primarch Mortarion, who offered Garro the rare opportunity to share a celebratory drink with him. It was said that there was no toxin too strong, no poison so powerful and no contagion of such lethality that a Death Guard could not resist it.
The Death Guard were known to harden themselves through stringent training regimens as neophyte Astartes, willingly exposing themselves to chemical agents, contaminants, deadly viral strains and venoms of a thousand different shades. They could resist them all.
From a set of bowls was mixed and poured dark liquids into a pair of ornate goblets. The senses of the chosen Astartes often rebelled against the odour of the toxins, their implanted Neuroglottis and Preomnor organs rebelling at the mere smell of the poisonous brew; but to refuse the cup would be seen as weakness.
The poured distillate often contained a potent mixture of agent magenta nerve bane, some variety of sword beetle venom, and other, less identifiable compounds.
The cups were Mortarion's, and in each battle where the Death Lord took the field in person, he would select a warrior in the aftermath and share with that man a draught of poison. They would drink and they would live, cementing the unbreakable strength of the Legion they embodied.
Mortarion knew Garro frowned upon such traditions as the cups, but he explained to him that honours and citations were sometimes necessary. Warriors must know that they are valued. Praise from one's peers must be given when the moment is right.
Without it, even the most steadfast man will eventually feel unvalued. Mortarion talked to Garro privately, trying to gauge the battle-captain and figure out where his loyalties truly lay. The primarch wanted to ensure that Garro would be loyal to him and the cause of the Traitors when the Warmaster launched his campaign to usurp the Emperor and topple the corrupt Imperium.
Mortarion also wanted to know why the battle-captain eschewed membership in the warrior lodge that had been established within their Legion, a custom that had spread from the Luna Wolves Legion to many of the other Astartes formations.
Garro felt that as Astartes, they had been set on a path by the Master of Mankind, tasked to regather the lost fragments of Humanity into the fold of the Imperium, to illuminate the lost, castigate the fallen and the invader.
They could only do so if they possessed truth on their side. If they did not do this openly then he had doubt that the XIVth Legion would eventually expunge the fallacies of gods and deities, but they could not bring the secular Imperial Truth to bear if any of it was hidden, even in the smallest part.
Only the Emperor could show the way forward. Garro felt that these lodges, though they had their worth, were ultimately predicated upon secrecy and the act of concealment, and he would take no part in it.
Though disappointed by Garro's point of view, Mortarion still hoped to turn Garro to the Traitors' cause.
He appointed the battle-captain as his equerry, taking him to an important conclave aboard the Warmaster's flagship, the Vengeful Spirit, to discuss the upcoming campaign in the Isstvan System. The primarch still hoped to sway Garro's loyalty towards the Warmaster's cause.
Garro's 7th Company fought in concert with the Emperor's Children's elite 1st Company against traitorous forces on Isstvan Extremis, the outermost planet within the Isstvan System. Whilst fighting against a powerful Slaaneshi psyker known as a Warsinger, Garro sustained serious injuries; crushing damage to his torso, his arm, and the loss of his right leg from the mid-thigh down.
He was only saved from certain death under the assault of the Warsinger's psychic scream by the timely ministrations of an Apothecary from the Emperor's Children Legion -- their chief apothecary, Fabius.
Garro's leg was eventually replaced with a bionic prosthesis of excellent quality. Garro was livid, feeling his anger surge each time the new leg made him limp. The minute gyroscopic mechanisms in the limb would take time to learn the motions and kinetics of his body movement, and until they did, he would be forced to walk as if lame.
The Legion's Apothecaries had not declared him fully healed and therefore Garro was deemed unfit for battlefield operations. His command also remained on limited duty until their commander was fit to reenter combat.
Garro was to be stationed instead aboard the frigate Eisenstein during the assault on Isstvan III, while Commander Ignatius Grulgor of the 2nd Company kept a close eye on the Terran-born officer. They were both to be assigned to duty stations with their Command Squads aboard the Imperial warship, where they would supervise its operations.
The rest of their Great Companies would remain in reserve. During the assault on Isstvan III and the Choral City, they would provide standby tactical support for the Drop Pod deployment operation, and remain on alert to perform rapid-reaction interdict duties.
Before the mission began, First Captain Typhon pulled Commander Grulgor aside and spoke to him of their primarch's desire to bring Garro to the Warmaster's banner over the Emperor's, but they both knew that Garro would never betray the Master of Mankind. He was too much the Emperor's dutiful warrior.
Realising the first captain's intent, Grulgor deduced that the time for the Traitors to act against the Imperium had arrived, as he saw Horus' intention emerging in the unusual pattern of mission assignments on Isstvan III granted to specific units from the Legions, instead of complete companies.
Grulgor realised that the Warmaster sought to isolate those elements of the soon-to-be Traitor Legions that did not share his convictions.
When the turning point arrived, Typhon informed Grulgor that there were certain duties that Horus would want him to perform. The commander relished his part in this conspiracy against Garro, whom he had long found insufferable.
The Eisenstein was an unremarkable Imperial starship, an older pattern of vessel in the frigate tonnage grade, just over two kilometres in length from bow to stern.
It bore some resemblance to the newer Sword-class craft, but only inasmuch as most Imperial starships shared a similar design philosophy. Garro knew that they would not be making much history on this day.
Their primarch had ordered that they maintain orbit at high anchor and watch for enemy ships that might attempt to escape Isstvan III under cover of the ground assault. Garro became suspicious of Commander Grulgor's manner as well as their orders to change position and drop into lower orbit, deepening the uneasy feelings he had about the entire operation.
Though the battle-captain suspected something was terribly wrong, he could not place his finger on what it was. Had they been carrying Drop Pods and Astartes for a second assault wave, then the reasoning behind the orders would have been clear, but the frigate was not configured for those sorts of operations. It was, in the most basic sense, only a gun carriage.
Garro's Legion serf, the housecarl Kaleb Arin, made his way down to the launch bay to spy on Commander Grulgor on behalf of his lord and find out exactly what they had transported aboard the Eisenstein.
When he saw them unload a crate and opened it to inspect its contents, the dark liquid contents contained within the glass pods represented something utterly lethal. With clarity Arin suddenly realised the threat that Grulgor's cargo presented.
He also observed the work gangs busy detaching the warhead cowlings from thruster-guided glide bombs, exchanging the explosive charges inside for the globes of liquid.
The 7th Great Company's Apothecary, Meric Voyen, also had his suspicions, and had also stealthily made his way to the launch bay to investigate. He saved the housecarl from narrowly being captured by Grulgor's warriors.
Arin shared with the Astartes what he had witnessed. Digesting what the housecarl told him, Voyen realised with growing horror that the deadly cargo were Life-Eater virus bombs -- an engineered viral strain of such complete lethality that it could only be deployed in the most extreme circumstances, usually against the most foul xenos.
The Life Eater virus was a true weapon of mass destruction, a world-killer. Only the largest capital ships were permitted to carry them in their armouries. Grulgor had brought the virus bombs over from the Death Guard capital ship Endurance.
During the opening stage of the first assault wave, the Eisenstein picked up an unscheduled movement in their battle sector. They received a signal from another ship leaving the confines of the Lord Commander Eidolon’s ship, the Andronicus, from the Emperor Children's Legion.
At first they thought that it might be the insufferable Lord Commander Eidolon making an unscheduled mission flight down to Isstvan III's surface, eager to take part in the glory. But they soon realised that the lone craft was a Thunderhawk, and behind it a cluster of Raven interceptors were in an attack delta formation.
Confused by this turn of events, the Andronicus sent the Eisenstein a message ordering it to destroy the Thunderhawk on sight, as it was acting against the Warmaster's commands and was to be considered a Renegade. At the same time, the Eisenstein also received a message from the Thunderhawk.
The occupant was none other than Garro's honour brother, Captain Saul Tarvitz. Garro's mind was awash with confusion: a rogue Thunderhawk, the signal from Eidolon, the incredible command to terminate the fleeing vessel and the ranking Astartes officer aboard it.
Was this some kind of test? Some bizarre sort of battle drill to assess the mettle of the Eisenstein's command crew? Or could it be true that Saul Tarvitz had indeed turned Renegade and was fit only for execution?
If it was possible for Isstvan III's Imperial Governor Vardus Praal to turn against the Emperor, then perhaps an Astartes might do the same. Tarvitz's next message was a dire warning, telling Garro that the entire operation was treachery.
Horus had betrayed the Emperor! The fleet was going to bombard the planet's surface -- and the Astartes upon it -- with virus bombs!
Tarvitz swore on his life that he would not lie to his honour brother. Every Astartes on Isstvan III was going to die. Coming to a quick decision, Garro acted of his own volition and ordered the Eisenstein to destroy the Thunderhawk. But in actuality he altered the firing coordinates so that the frigate destroyed the lead Raven interceptor, whose explosion caught the other interceptors in its wake, due to their close formation.
As Tarvitz's Thunderhawk was close to Isstvan III's atmosphere, he used the sensor disruption to slip away. Garro's men had just witnessed their commanding officer disobey a direct order from their superior.
This was dereliction of duty, grounds for severe chastisement at a minimum. If the Warmaster learned of the battle-captain's insubordination, it would taint them, and the entire Death Guard.
Nevertheless, Garro ordered the ship's crew to contact the Andronicus and inform them that the rogue vessel had been destroyed, and the explosion claimed their pursuit ships as well.
Though some of his warriors were made uneasy by the battle-captain's actions, Garro explained to them that as an honour-brother, Tarvitz only spoke the truth, and his words were no falsehood.
Garro soon saw the larger picture. The sheer horror of it, echoed inside his thoughts. Betrayal. The idea of it made him go weak. And with that realization there came another. If Horus had prepared this treachery, then he had not done it alone, it was too big, too monumental an endeavour even for the Warmaster to have managed by himself.
Garro realised that Horus' primarch brothers would have taken part in this treachery as well: Angron, ever ready to take any path that led him to more bloodshed; Fulgrim, convinced of his own superiority and perfection over all, and Mortarion himself, in secret conspiracy with the Warmaster due to an old grudge he had long held against the Emperor.
To compound matters further, Garro’'shousecarl arrived on the bridge of the Eisenstein and informed his lord that Grulgor and his warriors were loading the main guns with Life-Eater virus bombs. With only Apothecary Voyen, Battle-Brother Sendek and his housecarl, Garro confronted Commander Grulgor and his entire command squad and a handful of naval crew.
When confronted by Garro, Commander Grulgor made a seditious announcement, explaining that the Emperor had abandoned them, leaving the Legions behind so that He could flee back to Garro's precious Terra. He had sold off the Space Marine Legions' birthright to a council of weak-willed fools and politicians, taken civilians who had never known hardships or the kiss of war, making them lords and lawmakers in the primarchs' stead.
Grulgor claimed that Emperor held no authority over the Death Guard. Only Horus and the Death Lord could command them. What they were doing on Isstvan III, they did by the will of Horus and Mortarion.
The three Loyalist Astartes and the Human housecarl leapt at their foes with righteous fury. During the ensuing melee, the housecarl saw Commander Grulgor taking aim with his Bolt Pistol at Garro while he was preoccupied fighting off one of his men. Realising the immediate threat, Arin instinctively fired his Stub Gun, his shot released an instant before Grulgor's finger tightened on his trigger.
The stub-bullet from the handgun struck the frame of Grulgor's Bolt Pistol, ricocheting off a girder near Garro's head. Reacting with preternatural speed, Grulgor turned and threw his Combat Knife at the housecarl, mortally wounding him.
But Grulgor's errant bolt presented a new threat, as it had ricocheted off the metal bulkhead and into one of the virus warhead spheres, releasing its deadly cargo. Using the last of his ebbing strength, Arin launched himself forward and hit an emergency release switch.
Garro flung himself under the closing blast shield door, landing hard and rolling out to where Voyen and Sendek were crouched in the next compartment. The hatch was proof against the virus.
The housecarl had saved their lives, as well as the ship, at the cost of his own. Grulgor and his warriors suffered the lethal effects of the Life-Eater pathogen and died screaming in agony.
After the altercation, Garro explained to the rest of his seventy Death Guard warriors on the Eisenstein about his confrontation with Grulgor and the virus bombs. He also told them of Grulgor's declaration against the Emperor and the horrifying results of the ensuing melee on the gunnery decks.
He explained to his horrified warriors the entire truth. Grulgor and Eidolon were not two errant souls pursuing some personal agenda, but soldiers in a war of betrayal that was about to unfold. What they had done was not of their own volition, but under the orders of the Warmaster himself. Horus, with the support of Angron, Fulgrim, and though it sickened him to say it, their own Primarch Mortarion, had done this.
As a warrior lodge-brother, Voyen confirmed Garro's words. There has been talk of the Warmaster at second- and third-hand in the lodges. Talk of how far away the Emperor was and of discontent over the commands of the Council of Terra. The tone of things had been strained ever since Horus was injured at Davin, after he returned from his miraculous healing at the hands of the shamans of the Temple of the Serpent Lodge.
Horus had personally chosen all the units for the assault on the Choral City. He picked only the Astartes of the gathered Legions who he and his brothers knew would remain loyal to the Emperor. The virus bombing would rid him of the only obstacle within the Legions to open insurrection against the Imperium.
Had Garro not been grievously injured on Isstvan Extremis, he had no doubt that he would be alongside their fellow Loyalists below on the planet's surface, unaware that a sword was poised at their necks. The turn of events had played in their favour, and they had to seize the opportunity in the name of the Emperor.
Flight of the Eisenstein
"His dreams and hope are in ruin, his trust proved false, and his brightest son fallen to darkness. These are bitter tidings, a nightmare made flesh, but they must reach the Emperor."
- — Nathaniel Garro, battle-captain of the Death Guard
With the remaining Loyalists aboard the Eisenstein, Garro was determined to flee the Isstvan System and make for Terra. Now fully aware of the traitorous actions of Horus and his accomplices, Garro had his warriors make an Oath of Moment upon his power sword Libertas. The seventy remaining Death Guard Astartes all swore to dedicate themselves to the safe carriage of the warning of Horus' betrayal to Terra, no matter what forces were ranged against them.
Garro had considered briefly the idea of opening up all of Eisenstein’s vox transmitters to maximum power and broadcasting the truth of the treachery across the entire 63rd Expeditionary Fleet.
There were noble warriors out there, he was sure of it, Astartes like Loken and Tarik Torgaddon in the Warmaster's own Sons of Horus Legion, and Macer Varren of the World Eaters. If only he could contact them, save their lives; but to do so would have meant suicide for everyone on the frigate.
Every minute they kept their silence was a minute more for Garro to plan an escape with the warning. Loken and the other Loyalists would have to find their own path through this nightmare. The message was far more important than the lives of a handful of Astartes. Garro only hoped that once his mission had been fulfilled he might see them again, either back on Terra at the end of their own escape or here once more with an Imperial reprisal fleet at his back.
For now, those Astartes were on their own, as were Garro and his warriors. During the bombardment of Isstvan III with the virus-bombs, the Eisenstein picked up another signal. It was another Thunderhawk on an intercept vector with their ship. It belonged to the Sons of Horus, assigned to the Vengeful Spirit.
The pilot identified himself as Third Captain Iacton Qruze, formerly of the Sons of Horus. He claimed to be no longer part of his Legion as he could no longer be a party to what Horus was doing. Garro let the Thunderhawk land upon the frigate.
It bore three refugees from the slaughter of civilians that Horus had unleashed upon his flagship; the Luna Wolf Iacton Qruze, Kyril Sindermann -- a high-ranked Iterator, the Remembrancer Mersadie Oliton -- and the former Remembrancer Euphrati Keeler -- now regarded as a Living Saint by those who believed in the dictates of the Lectitio Divinitatus, the cult first founded, ironically, by the Primarch Lorgar of the Word Bearers Legion that held the Emperor to be divine.
Garro granted them sanctuary. When Garro spoke with Keeler afterwards, their conversation strengthened his conviction and growing belief in the Emperor's divinity.
Garro knew his lightly armed frigate was no match against the powerful capital ships of Horus' blockading fleet. At the time, the Eisenstein was close to the rear edge of the fleet pattern. The ship's captain took the liberty of informing the fleet master's office that they were suffering a malfunction in one of their tertiary fusion generators.
It was standard naval procedure for a ship under those circumstances to drop back from the main formation, to prevent other vessels being damaged in case of a cascade failure and core implosion. But the Loyalists knew that the ruse would not last for long. For they would be undone the moment they fired their main engines.
Realising something was amiss, First Captain Typhon aboard the massive Death Guard battleship Terminus Est moved to intercept the small frigate when he had received no word from his usually boisterous subordinate Grulgor. He gave chase as the Eisenstein attempted to evade the guns of his ship. The frigate sustained severe damage from the Terminus Est's massive guns batteries as it sped past.
The crippled ship limped away from Isstvan III. It was severely damaged, and all of its astropaths had perished in the firefight and their lone Navigator was mortally wounded. The ship was incapable of interstellar communication and had little chance of successfully navigating its way across the Immaterium, but Garro ordered the vessel to make a blind Warp-jump in order to save the lives of everyone aboard.
Once inside the Warp, the damaged Eisenstein attracted the attentions of the Chaos God Nurgle, the Plague Lord, who had already claimed the Death Guard Legion as his future champions and had no desire to see Horus' rebellion against the Emperor suffer a setback. Because the Eisenstein's Gellar Field had been weakened by the damage the starship had sustained during its flight from the Isstvan System, the Dark God was able to insinuate its malign influence into the vessel.
Nurgle's power resurrected Grulgor, his dead Astartes and the ship's crew who had sided with him, creating the first Plague Marines. The ensuing battle between the infected Warp creatures and the Loyalist Death Guard aboard the ship resulted in the death of the vessel's only Navigator.
Grulgor, using a Plague Knife, managed to infect a member of Garro's command squad, the young Battle-Brother Solun Decius, with the terrible daemonic disease known as Nurgle's Rot, and almost triumphed over Garro.
However, Garro ordered the Eisenstein to make an emergency transition out of the Warp. Without access to the infernal power of Nurgle sustaining them within the Immaterium, Grulgor and his corrupted brethren's physical forms fell dead once more, their souls sucked back into the Warp, though Grulgor would later be resurrected once more as a powerful Daemon Prince of the Plague Lord.
Stranded hundreds of light years from any stretch of inhabited space, Garro ordered the Eisenstein's captain to overload the frigate's Warp-Drive and then jettison it out into space. Garro hoped that the detonation of the Warp-Drive would produce such a powerful shockwave in the Immaterium that any passing Imperial starships might be willing to stop and investigate.
The plan would also guarantee that if no rescuers appeared, the Eisenstein would never reach another destination and its crew and passengers would die in the black void of interstellar space.
However, the ensuing explosion of the Warp-Drive echoed across the Empyrean and acted as a beacon for the Primarch Rogal Dorn and the fleet of his Imperial Fists Legion, who had been becalmed by Warp Storms unleashed by the gathering power of the Dark Gods as the Horus Heresy began. The Imperial Fists were already on their way back to Terra on the order of the Emperor, where Dorn would take up his new role as the Praetorian of Terra.
Dorn rescued Garro and his warriors and took them to Luna aboard the Imperial Fists' great mobile fortress-monastery, the Phalanx. While initially reluctant to the point of outraged violence to believe Garro about his brother Horus and the other primarchs' betrayal of the Emperor, once faced with overwhelming evidence from multiple sources, including the testimony of Iacton Qruze, a member of Horus' own Sons of Horus Legion, he eventually relented.
The Navigators of Dorn's massive fortress ship made their way to the Sol System where Dorn would inform his father the Emperor of this dreadful news.
After arriving in the Sol System with the news, Garro, his fellow seventy Death Guard Astartes, Euphrati Keeler, and Iacton Qruze were all placed in a fortress on Luna called the Somnus Citadel that belonged to the Sisters of Silence while the Emperor determined whether they were truthful or were simply further pawns of the Chaos Gods.
Even upon reaching Luna, and with the news of the betrayal delivered, Garro's trials were still not over, as one of his Astartes, Solun Decius, had become infected with Nurgle's Rot aboard the Eisenstein. Wracked by constant pain, Solun finally gave in to the temptations of Nurgle to ease his suffering and allowed his corrupted body to be possessed and mutated by a Greater Daemon of Nurgle known as the Lord of Flies.
His body was twisted by the possessing entity into a hideous daemonic form. In this state, Solun killed the two Astartes who had been conducting the death vigil over his prone form.
The Lord of Flies went on a killing rampage throughout the fortress. Garro was forced to battle him throughout the Sister of Silence's citadel and out onto the barren, airless surface of Luna itself. He eventually bested the Daemon who had once been his trusted comrade and banished the hideous entity he had become back to the Warp.
Afterwards, Garro, Qruze and the Sister of Silence Amendera Kendel were approached by Malcador the Sigillite, the Regent of Terra, and told that the Emperor needed them to form a new Imperial organisation, outside the boundaries of the existing Imperial bureaucracy, which would utilise "...men and women of inquisitive nature, hunters who might seek the witch, the traitor, the mutant, the xenos."
The Emperor had foreseen that the end of the Horus Heresy would cost Him greatly, so much so that He would no longer be able to take an active hand in Mankind's survival.
Yet He also knew that the threat of Chaos would not see defeat with Horus, but would continue to haunt Humanity. The very nature of the Horus Heresy had proven that the Space Marines were not immune to corruption as the Emperor had once hoped. So the Emperor set His hand to plans that would win a wider victory from the ashes of a most personal defeat.
The Sigillite, closest of the Emperor's servants, was ordered to scour the galaxy for those that would be found worthy to help save the future of Humanity. This was a monumental task made all the more difficult by the anarchy created by the Warmaster's insurrection.
That is how the Sigillite came to be on Luna, and the fate of Battle-Captain Garro became inextricably intertwined with the future survival of all Mankind.
Under the Sigillite's own seal, Garro was tasked with finding 7 other Loyalist Astartes from amongst both the Loyalist and Traitor Legions who were utterly devoted to the Emperor and His Imperium in body and soul, as part of a new organisation of Astartes known as the Knights-Errant that would carry out classified missions given them by the Sigillite.
Several of these Knights-Errant would eventually form the core leadership of what would later evolve into the Grey Knights Chapter of Astartes, the Chamber Militant of the Inquisition's Ordo Malleus. The Inquisition had been born in the fires of betrayal.
"My name is Nathaniel Garro, and I am a Legion of One."
- — Former Battle-Captain Nathaniel Garro, servant of Malcador the Sigillite
"You court death, Garro, like some ancient Knight-Errant."
-"That's as good a title as any, Brother."
After arriving on Terra at Malcador the Sigillite's invitation to begin his quest as the Sigillite's new Agentia Primus, Garro's power armour had all of its Death Guard regalia removed and replaced with the personal sigil of Malcador, a stylised letter "I" with three horizontal lines through its centre, the icon that would later become infamous across the galaxy after the Heresy as the Rosette of the Inquisition.
During his mission for the Sigillite, when questioned as to which Legion he belonged to, Garro consistently referred to himself as a "Knight-Errant" and the member of a "Legion of One." Garro's first mission was to the war-torn Calth, a battle-scarred Agri-world located in the Veridian System.
The Loyalist XIIIth Legion, the Ultramarines, were engaged against their treacherous former brethren from the XVIIth Legion, the Word Bearers, in a great contest of the Heresy known to history as the Battle of Calth.
Garro slipped past the Word Bearers' orbiting fleet and down to the surface of the war-ravaged planet. He was looking for the Ultramarines' 21st Company, under the command of Captain Erikon Gaius. The 21st Company had been last sighted on the western outskirts of the city of Numinus.
They had been at the forefront of the first Word Bearers assault and it had been their burden to witness the deaths of too many of their battle-brothers at the hands of the Traitors and their daemonic allies. They were now a company in name only.
Their captain -- the Hero of the Hadier Uprising, Gaius the Strong, Gaius the Unflinching, had rallied them in the face of the brutal losses. With words and deeds he had led them into the fray, and they claimed back in blood a steep price from the Traitors, but not enough. They were cut off from their kinsmen, holding one of the mag-lev railroad approaches to Numinus City.
Garro sought out Battle-Brother Tylos Rubio amongst the Astartes of the 21st Company, an extremely powerful psyker who had once been a codicier of the XIIIth Legion before the Emperor's formal decree at the Council of Nikaea had banned the Space Marine Legions' use of psykers, including their own corps of Librarians.
Many resented the Decrees of Nikaea, but honoured their oath to the Emperor and surrendered their Librarian panoply and wargear, returning to the battle lines as ordinary battle-brothers.
Captain Gaius had been killed in a Word Bearers' assault when a large force of Traitor Marines and Chaos Cultists nearly overwhelmed the 21st Company's battle lines. Garro arrived before the next assault and found Brother Rubio. He explained to the perplexed Ultramarine that he was there on the orders of Malcador the Sigillite and that Rubio must come away with him.
Rubio refused to leave his battle-brothers in the face of annihilation unless so ordered by the Emperor Himself. Much to Rubio's surprise, the honourable Garro respected his decision and agreed to stand and fight with him against the Word Bearers.
In the final assault, the Ultramarines were driven back in the face of overwhelming numbers, and sought cover within a cave. They were hard-pressed by the elite Word Bearers' Cataphractii-armoured Terminators.
Brother Rubio was sorely tested, forced to restrain from using his innate psychic abilities, bound by his sacred oaths to the Emperor, even though he knew that by doing so he could have saved the lives of many of his fallen battle-brothers.
Facing imminent death, Rubio felt that he had no other choice and unleashed a powerful psychic attack, driving the enemy back with the full force of his powers. The tunnel collapsed in the process, burying the attacking Word Bearers Cataphractii under tons of rubble.
The survivors of the 21st Company had been saved and the sole passage to Numinus had been denied to the enemy. But the cost of using his powers had cost Rubio dearly -- his honour before his primarch and his Emperor. Garro told him to be grateful that he had saved his brothers' lives.
As he approached his fellow Ultramarines, they averted their eyes and as one turned their backs, shunning him. Rubio had disobeyed a Decree Absolute of the Emperor, and for that, there was no forgiveness. Garro drew his sword Libertas and Rubio spun at the sound of it, fixing Garro with a furious glare.
Garro held the sword out, the point down towards the ground. He had Rubio place his hand upon the blade to take an Oath of Moment, to dedicate himself to the orders of the Regent of Terra and put aside all other claims upon his honour. Rubio swore upon the blade, for he had little other choice.
The next Astartes that Garro recruited was Captain Macer Varren, a former battle-brother of the XIIth Legion, the World Eaters, who had turned Traitor to the Emperor and followed Horus in his madness. Like Garro and his fellow Death Guard warriors, Varren too, had forsaken his own kinsmen after they swore fealty to the Warmaster and the Dark God Khorne.
The lord of his Legion, the gladiator Primarch Angron, had sent his personal guard to kill Varren for his refusal to join the World Eaters in their sedition against the Emperor. Varren escaped with his life, and an embittered heart.
Varren was recruited into the Knights-Errant shortly after Garro returned to Terra with Rubio. As they entered the Sol System, Garro was ordered by the Custodian Khorarinn of the Legio Custodes to accompany him to deal with a ragtag fleet of vessels led by the Daggerline that had arrived on the edge of the Sol System.
Aboard were members of the Emperor's Children and White Scars Legions led by Captain Macer Varren of the World Eaters, who had also abandoned his Legion after refusing to turn against the Emperor. These Astartes claimed to be Loyalists, but the Legio Custodes distrusted their motives and believed they might be Traitor infiltrators. After the White Scars proved to be Traitors, the Daggerline was destroyed, but Varren joined the Knights-Errant.
Garro had offered him a new role as one of Malcador's Knight-Errant operatives, but in truth, the duty sat poorly with him. Quick to anger like all World Eaters, he longed to be out in the thick of the war, facing his former battle-brothers. He lacked the cool detachment of the Death Guard or the stoicism of the Ultramarine Librarian Tylos Rubio.
While in the Sol System, Garro also infiltrated the Imperial Fists' mobile fortress-monastery Phalanx in an attempt to recruits the Codicier Yored Massak, who had been sealed in a vault with the other Librarians of the Imperial Fists in accord with the Decrees of Nikaea.
Massak refused the offer, and the Imperial Fists Primarch Rogal Dorn warned Garro to be wary of the Sigillite's orders. Dorn's warning led Garro to discover that his Apothecary, Meric Voyen, one of The Seventy, had recovered the remains of the Daemon-possessed Solun Decius on Luna and was taking them to Io, the moon of Jupiter, for study. Garro intercepted the ship, diverting its course towards Io to jettison the Chaos-tainted remains into the sun.
In 017.008.M31 Garro arrived in the Pale Stars aboard the Warp-sprinter called the Eusebeian Herald, accompanied by Tylos Rubio and Callion Zaven, and sent out a coded signal from Optera IV.
Captain Serron of the Blood Angels, Nirun of the White Scars, and the mysterious Blackshield known only as the Nemean Reaver of the Dark Brotherhood answered his summons, but the conclave was interrupted by an Alpha Legion ambush. The Knights-Errant teleported aboard the Eusebian Herald, taking the Nemean Reaver -- their originally intended recruit -- with them.
The last of the seven warriors that Garro was ordered to recruit was Garviel Loken, once a captain and member of the Mournival of the Sons of Horus. Though it appeared that he had perished during the final bombardment on Isstvan III, he had somehow managed to survive on its blighted surface in the ruins of the Choral City for several standard years after the Traitor Legions had moved on and the larger tragedy of the Horus Heresy had consumed the galaxy.
The Warmaster's insurrection had long since moved onwards towards other sectors. The world of Isstvan III was now a desolate and barren graveyard planet inhabited only by Plague Zombies raised by the lingering taint of Nurgle which had consumed the world after the Life-Eater virus had destroyed all life upon its surface.
Loken had been driven mad by the horrors he had experienced and believed that he had been rejected by Death itself. He experienced a form of amnesia and could no longer recall his own name, taking upon himself the new identity of "Cerberus," believing himself to be the sole remaining Loyalist in the galaxy and champion of the Emperor until he was confronted by Garro.
After their arrival on Isstvan III by Thunderhawk, Garro, Rubio and Macer Varren encountered a handful of what they believed to be Human survivors who spoke of a beast that hunted them.
Taking matters into his own hands, Garro went to the lair of the so-called beast of Isstvan III, and on discovery of the long-dead corpse of Tarik Torgaddon, he was attacked by the unkempt, nearly-psychotic "Cerberus."
After a lengthy battle, during which Cerberus escaped, Garro and his companions discovered that the Human "survivors" of the virus-bombing of Isstvan III were in fact Daemonhosts who had been transformed into undead Plague Zombies of Nurgle when the virus-bombing had weakened the barrier between the Immaterium and Isstvan III, allowing the Plague Lord's influence to reign supreme.
Garro and his Loyalist Astartes managed to defeat the foul creatures with the aid of Cerberus; however, once the undead had been destroyed, Garro and Cerberus had one more one-on-one combat match, as Loken perceived the group of Astartes as Traitors who had come to kill him.
It was during this final fight that Garro managed to reach through the amnesia and fractured awareness of Cerberus to the core of the good man that remained deep within his psyche, reminding him of who he truly was, and that the Emperor still had a use for him in rooting out the corruption that was staining the Imperium.
Aware of his true identity once more and how he had come to be stranded amidst the ruins of the Choral City of Isstvan III, Garviel Loken joined Garro and his team.
With his assemblage of warriors now complete, Garro and Loken left Isstvan III for Luna so the Knights-Errant could receive their first mission from Malcador the Sigillite.
Finding Euphrati Keeler
In downtime between his missions for Malcador and the Knights-Errant, Garro followed up on rumours of the location of Euphrati Keeler, the former Remembrancer he had helped to rescue from the Vengeful Spirit at Isstvan III who was now regarded as a Living Saint by the devotees of the Lectitio Divinitatus.
Keeler, whose miraculous abilities to defeat Daemons and influence people had raised suspicions that she was some form of Renegade psyker among the Sisters of Silence, had been released from the Somnus Citadel on Luna after no evidence of psychic ability had been found. Once on Terra, she spent her time spreading the belief that the Emperor was a god and growing the nascent cult of the Lectitio Divinitatus.
While searching for Keeler on Terra's Riga orbital plate, Garro met Katanoh Tallery, a scribe of the Imperial Administration who in the course of her work had discovered that starships and other crucial strategic supplies were being secretly siphoned away from other projects to prepare Terra's defences and covertly delivered to Titan, the moon of Saturn under the operational codename of "Othrys."
Tallery feared that the mysterious shipments were part of a plot by Traitors embedded in the bureaucracy of the Departmento Munitorum to somehow aid Horus' cause in advance of the coming Siege of Terra. Garro believed her suspicions to be true due to her utter devotion to the God-Emperor and His growing cult.
Together, the scribe and the Knight-Errant boarded a derelict starship intended to be used as raw material to build a new fortress-monastery on Titan. They managed to make their way to various construction sites on the large moon where they discovered that strange, psychic-based weaponry was being shipped to the site. They also found transports arriving bearing wounded civilians and Imperial troops from the fall of the colony world of Mertiol to Horus' forces.
Determined to discover the truth behind what was happening on Titan, the pair fought their way through the security forces present to the very top of the newborn fortress-monastery, where to their shock they discovered Malcador the Sigillite already there waiting for them.
The Regent of Terra revealed that what was happening on Titan was not part of a conspiracy by the Traitors, but the culmination of a secret new project authorised by the Emperor Himself that was intended to ensure that Humanity would still be able to combat the threat of Chaos long after the Horus Heresy had ended.
Tallery found it difficult to bear the knowledge that Chaos would continue to threaten Mankind even after the end of the great civil war that now engulfed the Imperium. To end her threat to the security of the project, Malcador ordered Garro to execute her and put her out of her misery.
Garro refused, and rebelled against the sheer cruelty of the order against someone who was a proven servant of the Emperor. Malcador relented and came up with another solution that would make use of bot Tallery's knowledge as well as her proven skill as an adept. She was taken into the Sigillite's confidence concerning the true scope of the project on Titan and made the project's curator-adepta primus, the Imperial bureaucrat in charge of completing the new facilities on Titan.
Garro's next mission for the Sigillite took him to the world of Nolec Trimus, where he fought a dragon-like Daemon that fed on Human blood. Facing only Garro, the Daemon proved unwilling to attack and seek to possess him without the reward of more mortals to prey upon. So Garro waited for Imperial reinforcements to arrive, finally killing the beast when it took the bait alongside his fellow Knight-Errant and member of The Seventy, the former Death Guard Astartes Helig Gallor.
Garro returned to Terra and once more took up his quest to find Keeler. In the course of his investigations he discovered a remote site called Salvaguardia where a group of the Lectitio Divinitatus faithful had been massacred by unknown assailants. Garro also met First Captain Sigismund of the Imperial Fists while going over the site, who revealed that he had encountered Keeler who had also awoken his own growing belief in the divinity of the Emperor.
In truth, Keeler was being hunted by the Vindicare Assassin Eristede Kell, who had once been part of an Execution Force sent by the Assassin clades to kill Horus on the world of Dagonet early in the Horus Heresy.
Kell had survived the assault, but had eventually been taken captive by Horus. His mind broken by years of isolation aboard the Vengeful Spirit while he waited for another chance to kill his target, Kell proved to be easy to turn to the Warmaster's service. Kell had been returned by the Traitors to Terra alongside the covert Alpha Legion operative Haln and ordered to find and kill Keeler.
Aware of Keeler's central role in the growing cult of Emperor-worship, the Warmaster hoped her death would unleash mass religious hysteria, further damaging Terra's stability as the Traitor forces closed on the Sol System.
It was the Assassin and the Alpha Legion operative who had massacred the faithful at Salvaguardia, where Keeler had been known to preach, and then tortured the survivors for information on the Living Saint's whereabouts.
Eventually, both the Traitor operatives and Nathaniel Garro managed to track Keeler to Terra's Hesperides orbital plate where a group of Emperor worshippers were being held as prisoners for their violation of the Imperial Truth.
The Traitor operatives infiltrated Keeler's group of the faithful, but when they moved to kill the Living Saint, Garro intervened, cutting Haln in half with his great sword Libertas and then killing Kell before he could unleash the Daemon-possessed weapon Horus had given to him to carry out his task.
During the battle, Keeler continued to demonstrate miraculous powers, including the ability to share visions of the future, heal wounds, and stop time to communicate with others.
To protect Keeler from any further attempts on her life, Garro handed her over to the custody of Malcador the Sigillite. Just before she was taken away by the Knight-Errant Vardas Ison, Keeler told Garro that his hand would free her when the time came.
She would be visited several times there by Garro in the years that followed along with her old friend the former Iterator Kyril Sindermann, who somehow was able to regularly infiltrate the complex. Garro sought comfort and reassurance from the Living Saint, and he visited her for the final time just before nine Knights-Errant were chosen to serve as the founders of the Grey Knights.
Siege of Terra
Shortly before the start of the Siege of Terra, Garro and the Knights-Errant under his command had been deployed across the Throneworld to fight outbreaks of daemonic infestation and Chaos Cultist attacks that increased in severity as Horus' Traitors approached the Sol System.
This included one such brutal fight against on the Terran techno-nomad settlement known as the Walking City and later at the White Mountain, a subterranean fortress on Terra where Malcador the Sigillite ordered a group of Sisters of Silence who had been captured and tortured by the forces of Chaos and then recovered by the Loyalists to be held while his researchers sought to determine what had been done to them.
In both of these combats, Garro and his Knights-Errant were forced to face an old foe, the Nurglite Daemon called the Lord of Flies who had once possessed Solun Decius and fought Garro on the airless surface of Luna. The Daemon was defeated once more and cast back into the Warp, but at a high price, for the former World Eater Knight-Errant Macer Varren was slain at the White Mountain by his comrades when the Daemon tried to possess him.
As the Traitor fleets emerged from the Warp into the Sol System to begin the siege of the Throneworld, Malcador chose nine of the Knight-Errants to take before the Emperor Himself to gain His approval as the founders of the new Astartes Chapter to be known as the Grey Knights. But one of them, Garviel Loken, refused the honour so that he could gain revenge upon Horus and his former battle-brothers among the Sons of Horus.
The remaining eight Knights-Errant were then taken through a Webway portal in the Imperial Palace to the fortress-monastery that had been prepared for them on Titan, the moon of Saturn, to begin their new mission.
Lacking any psychic ability, Garro was not among those chosen to go to Titan and take up the new role. So Malcador instead released Garro and all of the remaining Knights-Errant who had not been chosen from his service.
This was so that they could face Horus and the Traitors on their own terms in the Siege of Terra, serving no master but their desires for honour and vengeance.
Alongside his old comrade Helig Gallor of the Death Guard and Loken, Garro decided to join in the defence of the Imperial Palace. Once the siege began, Garro and Loken led kill-squads that ambushed the forces of the Sons of Horus who were seeking to penetrate the Saturnine section of the Imperial Palace's Ultimate Wall that possessed a shortcut into the Inner Palace.
The Traitors believed there was a weakness in the Palace's physical and spiritual defences beneath the Saturnine wall section, but this was in fact a trap that had been laid for them by Rogal Dorn as the Praetorian of Terra.
In this combat, Garro and his team defeated Captain Falkus Kibre, who commanded the Sons of Horus' elite, black-armoured Justaerin Terminators. After cutting Kibre in half with his great sword Libertas, it was revealed that Kibre had become possessed by some sort of daemonic entity which fled the Terminator's body once it had been mortally wounded. Garro his expressed pity for the Possessed Traitor Marine as he finished him off.
Next, Garro, Loken and their comrades faced First Captain Ezekyle Abaddon himself alongside the Blood Angels led by Captain-Paladin Bel Sepatus and the Loyalist World Eater commander Endryd Har. The Blood Angels and Endryd Har had succeeded in ambushing Abaddon's Sons of Horus, though the first captain managed to slay both Sepatus and Har in the ensuing fight.
However, it took Abaddon seven kill-strikes to finally slay the monstrously strong World Eater. Trapped beneath Har's great muscled bulk after his death, Abaddon would have been slain by Garro had he not teleported away before the Death Guard could reach him.
Garro's fate in the wake of the Horus Heresy is not currently known, though there are several conflicting stories. Kyril Sindermann, a future Inquisitor, described Garro as the first true martyr of the church of the God-Emperor.
Despite this, conflicting testimonies claim that Garro variously remained imprisoned with The Seventy until his death; went on to serve at the Master Apothecariate seeking a cure to Nurgle's Rot, a path followed by fellow Eisenstein survivor and Apothecary Meric Voyen; that Garro still lives in the 41st Millennium and commands an elite Astartes task force clad in the colours of the pre-Heresy Death Guard; or that he was ultimately possessed himself by the Lord of Flies.
Garro possessed a patrician aspect, its roots dating back to the warrior dynasties of ancient Terra. He was pale-skinned, but without the pallidity of his brother Astartes who hailed from the Death Guard's cold and lethal homeworld of Barbarus.
He had old eyes in a face that, despite its oft weary countenance, seemed too young for them; his head was hairless and patterned with pale scars.
In combat as a Death Guard, the battle-captain wore Mark IV Imperius Maximus power armour. On the chest of Garro's power armour was a brass cuirass that rested there. This was a ceremonial piece that Garro wore only in combat or upon formal occasions.
In tandem with the honour-rank of battle-captain, the decorative over-sheath sported an eagle, wings spread and beak arched, sculpted from brass as if about to take flight from the chest plate.
Similarly, the rear of the cuirass had a second eagle as a head-guard that emerged from the shoulders when worn over the backpack of Astartes armour. What made this piece unique was that its eagles differed from the Emperor's Aquila.
While the symbol of the Imperium of Man had two heads, one blinded to look at the past, one sighted to see to the future, the battle-captain's eagles were singular.
After entering Malcador's service, Garro was given a suit of Mark VI Corvus power armour (retaining the Aquila Imperator) and a Paragon Bolter — a master-crafted bolter with an increased rate of fire.
He was also equipped with a variant of a device known only as a "Falsehood" that projected a psycho-luminal sphere around him that distorted his appearance, allowing Garro to infiltrate the battlefield unseen and, even once detected, made it difficult for an enemy to target him.
- Artificer Armour - Garro originally wore a suit of Mark IV Imperius Maximus Pattern power armour in Death Guard Legion colours. Garro's power armour bore an ornate cuirass etched in brass and gold. This was a ceremonial piece that Garro wore only in combat or upon formal occasions. This decorative over-sheath sported an eagle, wings spread and beak arched, sculpted from brass as if about to take flight from the chest plate. After he fled Isstvan III and was charged by Malcador the Sigillite with a new purpose as Agentia Primus of the Knights-Errant, he was outfitted with Mark VI Corvus Pattern Power Armour, the most advanced wargear yet created at that point in the Heresy for the Astartes. Besides still bearing the ornate cuirass and the eagle behind his helm, there was absence of all other detail. His armour was a uniform stone grey from helm to boot, bereft of all iconography. Sigils of echelon or honour of a Space Marine Legion or other fealty were absent, save for a hidden rune upon his shoulder plates; a stylized High Gothic letter "I" etched into the metal of the ceramite, the mark of the Sigillite, the Regent of Terra and Adjutant to the Emperor. In later times, this rune would be recognised as the infamous rosette of the Inquisition.
- Aquila Imperator - Similarly to the ceremonial eagle worn on Garro's armour's chestplate, the rear of the cuirass had a second eagle as a head-guard that emerged from the shoulders when worn over the backpack. This was known as the Aquila Imperator, an archaic device that protected Garro similarly in function to an Iron Halo. This device emitted a very strong conversion field around its wearer, which made his armour even harder to pierce with enemy weapons. In addition, it also provided its wearer with immense resilience to even the most potent weapons on the battlefield.
- Falsehood - The Knights-Errant were gifted by the highest offices of the Mechanicum with many technological artifices, one of the most wondrous and guileful of which was known simply as "Falsehood." Such devices took many different forms and had varying effects, but that used by the Knights-Errant in open battle projected a psycho-luminal sphere about them that distorted their appearance, allowing them to infiltrate the battlefield unseen and, even once detected, made it all but impossible for a foe to draw a bead upon them.
- Libertas - In battle, Garro bore the ancient Power Sword Libertas. There were no visible imperfections visible in the crystalline matrix of its monosteel blade. It is said that this masterfully wrought broadsword was constructed from remnants of a far older device, a weapon so ancient it predates the fall of Mankind and the coming of Old Night. Whatever the truth, Garro wielded it against countless xenos foes throughout his service in the Great Crusade and, tragically, must now use it to spill the blood of his erstwhile brother Legiones Astartes.
- Paragon Bolter - The Knights-Errant of Malcador were outfitted with the finest crafted panoply of arms and armour that the Sigillite's household could procure, the plain grey heraldry belying the peerless quality of the underlying workmanship. This master-crafted bolter was able to fire at much higher rate than a standard weapon of its type.
- Master-Crafted Bolt Pistol
- Frag Grenades
- Krak Grenades
- Kaleb Arin – Kaleb was Battle-Captain Garro's equerry and housecarl. Kaleb was a former aspirant of the XIVth Legion who had failed the series of trials required for those who wished to become full battle-brothers of the Death Guard. Those aspirants that failed largely chose to accept the Emperor's Peace over a return in dishonour to their clans on Barbarus. But not all, as some lacked the strength of will even for this honour. Though some of the Legions made use of these throwbacks, it was not the Death Guard way. Thus, Battle-Captain Garro, as was his right, saved the failed aspirant and offered him a place within the Legion as a serf. Kaleb loyally served his lord for many solar decades, and like Garro, held to the old traditions of the Dusk Raiders. Kaleb was also a secret adherent of the holy teachings of the Lectitio Divinitatus, the sacred tome written by the Primarch Lorgar that extolled the virtues and divinity of the God-Emperor. During the Battle of Isstvan III, Kaleb was the one who discovered Commander Ignatius Grulgor's treacherous intentions, when he saw that he was unloading crates of Life-Eater virus warheads. The housecarl immediately rushed to the bridge and warned Garro of Grulgor's duplicity. During the ensuing battle between Garro and Grulgor's men, an errant shot from the traitorous Commander ricocheted off the ship’s bulkhead and struck one of the deadly containers, releasing the deadly pathogen. Kaleb sacrificed himself in order to ensure that Garro could fulfill his destiny in the name of the divine Emperor.
In the various Black Library audiobooks, Nathanial Garro is voiced by Toby Longwirth.
- Index Astartes III, "The Lost and the Damned - The Death Guard Space Marine Legion"
- Flight of the Eisenstein (Novel) by James Swallow
- Garro: Oath of Moment (Audio Book) by James Swallow
- Garro: Legion of One (Audio Book) by James Swallow
- Garro: Sword of Truth (Audio Book) by James Swallow
- Garro: Shield of Lies (Audio Book) by James Swallow
- Garro: Ashes of Fealty (Audio Book) by James Swallow
- Vengeful Spirit (Novel) by Graham McNeill
- Garro (Novel) by James Swallow, Chs. 1-4, 6-11, 14, 16, 20-21, Epilogue
- Patience (Short Story) by James Swallow
- The Buried Dagger (Novel) by James Swallow, Chs. 6-7
- The Horus Heresy Book Six: Retribution (Forge World Series) by Alan Bligh, pp. 208-209
- Forge World - Nathaniel Garro, Hand of the Sigillite
- Forge World - Horus Heresy Datasheet, Nathaniel Garro