Hunter Barthusa Narek was a skilled Vigilator, serving in his Legion's reconnaissance section, that is, until he received an injury during the Dropsite Massacre on Istvaan impeded his scouting abilities and saw him fall behind the others in his unit. He'd given up the squad soon after that, and rejoined the Legion proper as part of Dark ApostleValdrekk Elias' Chapter. During that time he commanded a stealth unit, sent to sabotage Legion forces loyal to the Emperor before the attack began and their betrayal was revealed. His unit met some enemy Scouts who saw at once what they were doing. They killed the fledgeling Raven Guard, but at the cost of Narek' s entire squad and his left leg. A bolt shell had shattered it. He'd finished placing the charges, crawling over the bodies of his dead comrades to do so, and found his way back from the dropsite before the firestorm began.
Bionics replaced his bones and his burned-up muscle and flesh, but he wasn't the same. That battle had left a mark on Narek that went beyond mere injury. It made him morose, prone to angry self-recrimination, even self-doubt, but he served because he was a soldier and that's what soldiers did - they followed orders. When Narek found out there was a position as a huntsman in the Dark Apostle's Chapter, he took up the post, but never divulged how he really felt about what happened on Isstvan. It sat poorly with him, but he understood its necessity and believed in their cause, perhaps less blindly than some of his brothers.
Mission to Traoris
Narek was highly-skilled and highly valued for his abilities as a former Vigilator, but secretly Narek was still loyal to the Emperor, though he continued to fight alongside his Traitor brethren. He had miraculously survived two purges of Loyalist elements within the XVII Legion which had been carried out to maintain the Word Bearers' 'theological purity'. Following his reassignment to Elias' Chapter, Narek was later reassigned the task of retrieving a powerful artefact, known as the Fulgurite - a petrified remnant of the Emperor's powerful lightning, which had been used to vanquish the Neverborn of Chaos - which had recently been discovered upon the world of Traoris.
Upon obtaining the fulgurite from Cabal agent John Grammaticus, Narek delivered the weapon to Elias and was ordered to hunt down the group of Shattered Legions Legionaries that had taken Grammaticus into their protection. Commanding a small group of Word Bearers Legionaries, Narek pursued the enemy group relentlessly, but ultimately failed to capture Grammaticus. He eventually ended his partnership with Elias after the Dark Apostle lost possession of the fulgurite. Breaking ties with his Legion, Narek resolved to hunt down Grammaticus and obtain the fulgurite so he could use it to kill his own Chaos-corrupted PrimarchLorgar and save the Word Bearers from damnation.
Narek was able to escape Traoris by persuading a pair of his fellow Word Bearers to teleport him through the Warp, but upon arrival on their destination world, Macragge, Narek's fellows revealed that they only aided him so that they could wreak havoc on the Ultramarines and attempted to kill him as a traitor to the Legion, forcing Narek to kill them and go to ground. Narek was ultimately able to track down and capture Grammaticus, who had come to Macragge with the fulgurite as part of his own mission, but was wounded by Grammaticus's comrade Damon Prytanis and later incapacitated by the Night Lords Primarch, Konrad Curze, who was loose on the planet. Following the climatic duel between the Salamanders' Primarch Vulkan and the Night Haunter, Narek was discovered shortly thereafter at the scene by the Ultramarines. He was standing near the fallen Primarch's corpse - the fulgurite still embedded in his chest, where Grammaticus had impaled him in his primary heart. Meanwhile, there was no sign of the missing Night Haunter. Assuming the worst, Narek was imprisoned by the Ultramarines in Macragge Civitas for the Primarch's murder.
After a period of imprisonment, Narek was secretly rescued and smuggled off Macragge by Kaspian Hecht, an agent of Malcador the Sigillite and a powerful psyker, who attempted to overwrite Narek's mind. Fighting back, Narek managed to kill Hecht but was left with parts of Hecht's psyche embedded in his own, leaving him with gaps in his memory and confused about his identity. Taking on Hecht's armour and identity, Narek commandeered a ship and made it to the space station Rampart, where he joined up with the so-called 'Sixty-Six' -- refugee Salamanders survivors of the Dropsite Massacre -- who were attempting to ferry Vulkan's body back to Nocturne through the Ruinstorm to be resurrected. Narek aided the Salamanders during their perilous voyage but was discovered once his true identity resurfaced, forcing him to fight off both former allies and Word Bearers sent to hunt him before escaping to the surface of Nocturne. His whereabouts following these events remains unknown.