"Ten thousand blessed saints rest eternal amidst the silent halls of Benediction. It is a world steeped in the blood of the faithful."
The Talledus System was an Imperial star system located in the Veritus Sub-sector of the Segmentum Solar. It was a stronghold of the Adeptus Ministorum and its capital Shrine World of Benediction had been reshaped into a mausoleum-temple to house the corpses of thousands of Imperial saints.
For ten thousand years the sanctified Talledus System shone as a beacon of Humanity's might. A realm of glittering shrine worlds populated by billions of pious servants of the God-Emperor, its glory seemed eternal and untarnishable.
However, following the birth of the Great Rift in the Era Indomitus, the Talledus System was assaulted by an alliance of Heretic Astartes led by the Word Bearers and commanded by the powerful Dark Apostle Kor Phaeron. This conflict was known as the Talledus War and resulted in the devastation of the system and its capital world.
The Talledus System lay in the centre of the Veritus Sub-sector, a region of space replete with Imperial worlds and navigable Warp routes. It was seen as a stronghold of the Ecclesiarchy, a vibrant symbol of the Imperial Creed's galaxy-spanning influence and power.
Its capital world of Benediction was entirely covered by a golden theocropolis of astonishing scale, the entirety of the planet's surface reshaped and sculpted into a mausoleum-temple to house the corpses of thousands of saints of the Imperial church.
Many faithful pilgrims of the God-Emperor would gladly have given their lives just to see the spire-mountains of Lux Eternis, to walk amidst the statues of long-dead priests and hierophants, to hear the sound of psalms echoing through the artificial valleys and stained glass towers of the Grand Honorificum.
This ambitious project was started by none other than the legendary reforming Ecclesiarch Sebastian Thor. During the 36th Millennium's Age of Apostasy, Thor led a great revolt against the depravities of his predecessor, Ecclesiarch and High Lord of Terra Goge Vandire. Thoroughly insane and murderous, Vandire had become convinced that he alone was the God-Emperor’s divine instrument and successor.
Anyone who questioned his increasingly deranged pronouncements was subject to hideous torture, then a summary execution at the hands of the Daughters of the Emperor, a sect of pious female warriors that had been swayed through religious fraud into Vandire's service.
The Talledus System suffered terribly during those dark days. Its governor, Hectus Carmine, was one of the first to openly and publicly decry the outrages of Goge Vandire. In doing so he earned the mad Ecclesiarch's fury. Carmine's homeworld of Talledus was invaded by forces loyal to Vandire, who were faced with the governor's steadfast Astra Militarum regiments and thousands of the God-Emperor's faithful who refused to acknowledge Vandire's rule.
After a fierce conflict that raged for many solar months, Carmine and hundreds of his co-conspirators were finally captured and put on trial. The deposed system governor was brutalised publicly for more than a solar month and ultimately burned alive on the steps of his palatial residence, while his populace was forced to witness. Not content with this blood price, Vandire ordered a grand purge of Heretics across the sub-sector.
On worlds such as Boras Minor, Ghreddask and Satropol across the system, the measures taken by the insane Ecclesiarch would live in infamy. Once a prosperous system famed for its splendour, Talledus itself was reduced to a shadow of its former glory.
Sebastian Thor was the leader of the Confederation of Light, an alliance of faithful souls determined to end Vandire's time as Ecclesiarch and reform the Imperial church, which had come to be known as the Reign of Blood. Thor gathered his forces -- which ultimately included several Space Marine Chapter Masters -- to Holy Terra, where they overthrew the tyrant and his loyal servants.
In the process, Thor revealed the depths of Vandire's heresy to the Daughters of the Emperor, who repaid their master's lies with the edge of a Power Sword. As Vandire's severed head struck the floor of his chamber, the terror that had enveloped the Imperium was finally ended. In the aftermath of this bloody coup, Thor -- having convinced the High Lords of Terra of the righteousness of his actions -- was chosen to become the new Ecclesiarch.
Thor was a bold and determined reformer. He decreed that the Daughters of the Emperor, having shown their true loyalty, would become the Chamber Militant of the Ecclesiarchy -- renamed the Sisters of Battle, they would faithfully serve the will of the God-Emperor. Having put in place measures to ensure that an event as disastrous as Vandire's Reign of Blood could not occur again, Thor departed Terra and began a grand tour of the Imperium's holy sites.
One of the first sub-sectors the new Ecclesiarch visited was Veritus, and its broken capital world of Talledus was his first port of call.
Though they had suffered greatly at the hands of the church, the survivors of Vandire's purges greeted their new Ecclesiarch reverently when he visited the ruins of Talledus. Moved by their faith, Thor ordered the construction of a grand monument to Hectus Carmine and all who had lost their lives during the Reign of Blood.
The limitless coffers of the Ecclesiarchy were opened, and upon the ashes of the past were fashioned soaring temples and mausoleum-cities of gold. Thor decreed that Talledus be renamed "Benediction" in honour of the fallen.
Over the following centuries the power and influence of the Veritus Sub-sector grew unchecked. The immense wealth generated by sacred tithes, pilgrimage tolls and the generous offerings of the God-Emperor's faithful flowed back into the vaults of the Ecclesiarchy.
In order to protect this valuable and imposing symbol of their power, Thor's successors as Ecclesiarch ensured that several fortress-sanctuaries of the Sisters of Battle were built upon Martyr's Rest and its neighbouring worlds. Entire Astra Militarum regiments were diverted to protect its borders, and the Ecclesiarchy's tithe-collectors roamed the space lanes of the Veritus Sub-sector, ensuring that the God-Emperor's due was paid in full.
The orbital dockyards at Satrapol were amongst the largest in the Imperium. Thousands upon thousands of vessels were packed together in cramped mooring claws, kept stationary for Terran months and sometimes even years as the Ecclesiarchy's agents methodically ensured that every tithe was collected. Those who failed to pay what was owed, or in any way roused the ire of the state church, were dealt with by the ruthlessly zealous Ghreddask Illuminators.
These crack Astra Militarum regiments did not technically answer to the Adeptus Ministorum, as the Decree Passive, passed in the aftermath of the Reign of Blood, prevented the church from maintaining such a military body ever again. Yet, such was the ferocity of their faith, the Illuminators maintained suspiciously close political ties with members of the Talledoran priesthood.
So did Talledus thrive for thousands of standard years. Even when the Great Rift tore open and Terra itself was savaged by the daemonic hordes of the Dark Gods, the Veritus Sub-sector remained untouched. The prophets of Benediction claimed that the faithful of Talledus lived under the eternal protection of the God-Emperor, a reward for all that they had once suffered.
Such predictions would prove utterly false. The Dark Gods had set their eyes upon this gleaming jewel in Humanity's crown, and their greatest mortal champions planned to see it burn in the fires of Chaos. The Talledus War would consume Benediction and all the worlds of the system, bringing a clash of rival faiths to the Veritus Sub-sector.
The following planets are listed in order of the distance they orbit from the Talledus System's star, from closest to furthest.
- Benediction (Shrine World) - Benediction, originally named Talledus, is both the capital world of the Talledus System and one of the most sacred Shrine Worlds in the entire Imperium of Man.
- Boras Minor (Mining World) - Boras Minor was invaded by Goge Vandire's forces during the Reign of Blood. Every female child under the age of 12 standard years on the planet's farms was arrested as part of the deranged demands made by Vandire. It was subsequently rebuilt as part of Sebastian Thor's reconstruction of the Talledus System after the Age of Apostasy.
- Ghreddask (Fortress World/Garrison World) - The most heavily defended world in the Veritus Sub-sector after Benediction itself, Ghreddask supported large numbers of Astra Militarum regiments of the Ghreddask Illuminators deployed in large garrisons as well as potent planetary defences. It nonetheless was invaded during the Talledus War by Iron Warriors under the command of Warpsmith Etrogar, who used a spaceborne Soul Harvester fortress-factory called Scarax Krond to devastate the planet. The tide only turned thanks to the intervention of Castellan Dramos of the Black Templars, who sacrificed himself to destroy the unholy Daemon Engine.
- Satropol (Shipyards) - The world of Satropol was home to the system's massive orbital shipyards, which were some of the largest in the Imperium. Thousands upon thousands of vessels were packed together in cramped mooring claws, kept stationary for Terran months and sometimes even years as the Ecclesiarchy's agents methodically ensured that every tithe expected from the vessels' owners was collected. Those who failed to pay what was owed, or in any way roused the ire of the state church, were dealt with by the ruthlessly zealous Ghreddask Illuminators.
- Coras Yeltis (Mining World)
- Naelus (Hive World)
- Martyr's Rest (Fortress World) - Martyr's Rest was a Fortress World that served as a base for the Sisters of Battle who protected the Talledus System and the Shrine World of Benediction.
- Tears of the Emperor (Asteroid Field) - The Tears of the Emperor was an asteroid field located at the rimward edge of the Talledus System.
- Psychic Awakening - Faith & Fury (8th Edition), pp. 6-9, 16-17