On the Nature of Duty: A speech delivered by the Chaplain Cadmus Gracchus of the Imperial Fists
What is duty?
Each of you would give me a different answer. This is not a flaw—yet. But ask your sergeants and you shall receive one answer. There is only one true duty for us—to kill for the good of Mankind. Everything else, every other obligation stems from this one duty.
As Marines, you must live and die by this duty. As Marines, you must and you will take lives of mutants, heretics and xenos. You will be deployed over a thousand and more fronts, and there you will confront all sorts of enemies of Mankind. It will fall to you to protect humanity from them and there is only one way you can do this: to kill.
But do we have not other duties?
As naïve as this question is, you are permitted to ask yourself this. The answer is yes. You have the duty to keep your gear serviceable and clean. You have the duty to train and better yourself. You have the duty to help your comrades, to support them as brothers. You have the duty to hate the enemies of Mankind.
Yes, you have other duties, but they all serve one greater purpose: you must kill!
Do not assume you are anything more than a weapon. You were taken from your homes, your families for only one singular purpose. Once you became initiates you have cast away all other obligations, goals and dreams. Perhaps, have you not been chosen, you would have lived different lives and served the Emperor and His Imperium differently. For make no mistake—you are serving the Emperor whenever you take a life. This does not make you less, then an Adept, who serves the Emperor in the guise of the Omnissaiah or a governor, who serves Mankind by ruling a planet. It does not make you more than a farmer, who serves by growing his crops or a teacher, who serves by guiding children. Every duty is as important as the other as long as it is united in serving the Emperor’s purpose. Do not forget this.
Now, that your realize that your duty is as sacred as any other, consider its nature. Consider why it is essential. Each mutant, heretic or xeno you kill, brings humanity close to their rightful place as a masters of the Galaxy. All those aberrations from the holy human form need to be destroyed, for they offend the Emperor and so, they must offend us. We were created by Him for this very reason. We are His chosen soldiers, His weapons against humanity’s many foes. It is His will that guides our hands and our guns.
The Emperor is our Lord and to Him we swear to uphold our sacred duty. It is for Him and through Him that we learn our purpose and that we fulfill it. He demands that we kill in his name and that of Mankind. It is not our place to question His wisdom.
But is our duty only towards the Emperor?
No! Our duty is for all of Mankind. We kill to protect them, to avenge them and to free them. We are its weapons, aimed at those who seek to subjugate and destroy us. We take the fight to all corners of the galaxy, to those who turn away from the light of the Emperor and to those that seek to extinguish it.
Does this mean our duty is a dual one? Does it mean that our duty towards the Emperor can ever contradict our duty towards Mankind?
No! The Emperor is Mankind. His will, His word is what should guide us. It is implicit that what we do for Him, we do for Mankind. To presume otherwise is nothing short of heresy! Do not dare to ever think that there is a duality here!
I have said that you are nothing more but weapons, created for one purpose. That is true. You need to accept it. However, there is another facet of this truth. You are no less than weapons. A man may spend his whole life searching for his purpose, but not you—you know it. There cannot be any place for doubt in you, for you are certain of all that you are.
Follow your duty and do not question it and you will not stray.
Again, ask yourself what you will answer when asked what duty is. Consider it carefully, and consider carefully what I have said.
Your duty is your life.
Your duty is to kill.
Your duty is to hate.
Your duty is to protect and serve.
Learn those words. Take them into your hearts and make them the core of your being. In the coming trials, they will be the sustenance for your spirit. They will stave away any doubt, you may have.
Duty is the light that will guide you in the dark.
When in doubt, ask yourself “What is my duty?” Once you remember this, you will know what needs to be done.
Duty is what unites us.
From this moment on, you share your duty with all of other Imperial Fists, even your Chapter Master. We are all guided by the same purpose. When you receive orders, remember that they all stem from this one purpose. Your superiors live by their duty and so should you.
Subjugate your life to duty. Submit. In every action, seek to follow your duty.
Last edited by Bloody Mary; 07-12-12 at 07:28 PM.