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*SPOILERS*

So for those of you that have read Wrath of Iron, what did you make of the fact that it appears that these guys are losing their souls as they continue to strip away their flesh on favour of machines? To me this adds an interesting twist to the future of the chapter. Will they continue to do so knowing they are more than just stripping flesh?

Also, it raises questions about their effectiveness against demons. If demons see human souls, and the IH souls are diminishing, should this not lend them a kind of stealth ability against demonic enemies? Would it lea to a chapter of nulls if they carry their practice to the extreme?
 

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Also, it raises questions about their effectiveness against demons. If demons see human souls, and the IH souls are diminishing, should this not lend them a kind of stealth ability against demonic enemies? Would it lea to a chapter of nulls if they carry their practice to the extreme?
As far as I know daemons see fairly normally, the strength of the soul doesn't seem to have much effect on them. They may be less drawn to the Iron Hands but I don't really expect this to have much practical benefit for them.

Necrons have no souls but AFAIK techpriests still do, to me that shows that you have to literally replace your entire body, possibly through a conscious transfer before you risk entirely loosing your soul. Also nulls/blanks aren't simply soulless, they have some sort of weird anti-soul.
 

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A while ago BL released a couple of 1000 word short stories about various Chapters. I (somewhat) distinctly remember someone mentioning one of these stories where an Iron Hands successor chapter went basically full AI Space Marines (maybe alcohol is making this up, I haven't read any of these shorts). It'd also be interesting to see what His Imperial Majesty's Most Holy Inquisition would do when they notice it (would probably depend on the Inquisitor).

Anyway, someone should really send the Iron Hands the quote from Ferrus at the beginning of the Wrath of Iron novel.
 

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A while ago BL released a couple of 1000 word short stories about various Chapters. I (somewhat) distinctly remember someone mentioning one of these stories where an Iron Hands successor chapter went basically full AI Space Marines (maybe alcohol is making this up, I haven't read any of these shorts). It'd also be interesting to see what His Imperial Majesty's Most Holy Inquisition would do when they notice it (would probably depend on the Inquisitor).

Anyway, someone should really send the Iron Hands the quote from Ferrus at the beginning of the Wrath of Iron novel.
"They are not my hands. This fact is forgotten by my brothers -- inexplicably, it has always seemed to me. The hands are strong, to be sure, and have created great things for us all, but they are not mine. And that counts for something. They forget that the silver on my arms comes from a beast that I vanquished. It is the mark of a great evil that I ended, and yet it persists within me... I would struggle to remove it now... I will not remove the silver from my flesh because I have learned to depend on it. The fault is with my mind. I rely on the augmentation given to me by my metal gauntlets, so much so that the flesh beneath them is now little more than a distant memory... A day will come when I will strip it from me, lest I lose the power to master myself forever. Already my Legion's warriors replace their shield hands with metal in my honour, and so they too are learning to doubt the natural strength of their bodies. They must be weaned off this practice before it becomes a mania for them. Hatred of what is natural, of what is human, is the first and greatest of the corruptions. So I record it here: when the time comes, I will strip my hands of their unnatural silver. I will instruct my Legion to recant their distrust of the flesh. I will turn them away from the gifts of the machine and bid them relearn the mysteries of flesh, bone and blood. When my father's Crusade is over, this shall be my sacred task. When the fighting is done, I shall cure my Legion and myself. For if fighting is all there is, if we may never pause to reflect on what such devotion to strength is doing to us, then our compulsion will only grow."
—The Neimerel Scrolls attributed to the Primarch Ferrus Manus

Also I believe within the First Founding and successor chapter I think there are some that believe they should not purge everything to the point to lose there humanity/soul An Example Is Kardon Stronos as he seems to think differently
 

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This has continued with the recent HH short story Riven. A spoilered summary follows;



Just read Riven myself today and loved it. The Iron Hands of course have gone insane and Boreas was right when he said that "all hope dies along the path you walk." But Crius is right that everything has changed, the Primarchs are mortal now and the Iron Hands have been left alone. The Heresy changed perspectives about so much and this is one of them, that the Primarchs are not invincible.

I really liked that line by Athanatos that Ferrus Manus betrayed them by dying and leaving them alone, made me think of people who lose loved ones and become irrationally angry at them for dying and leaving their loved ones behind. Their insane and have definitely become monsters, but they are worthy of pity as much as they may hate it. Crius's early line that the Gorgon can't die also struck me as very mortal, how people will go into denial about their loved ones demise even when they know it's true, they reject the knowledge because it is so hateful to them. And in grief people make bad decisions, I think that is the entire theme of Riven. That in grief people make choices they would never make otherwise, bad or good.

As to their betrayal of Ferrus Manus, yeah they have betrayed his wishes. Maybe that isn't something that some people can like and if you simply dislike the idea that a Chapter has betrayed their Primarch this way, then so be it. I like the idea, and I think the execution of it is brilliant. The Iron Hands credo has always been one of controlling fury with logic, Ferrus Manus believed in that and believed that the flesh could fail, but also that the machine could fail. But when Ferrus Manus died what failed him, Flesh or Iron? Flesh, it was his anger that saw the Gorgon dead and the Iron Hands remember that. Ferrus Manus's flesh failed him, but his iron didn't. If he had clung to the iron and stayed logical he might have lived, but he did not. And Riven shows that in their grief the Iron Hands have made a bad choice after seeing the Gorgon die, his flesh failed him, he was wrong when he said that the machine is fallible in the same way. So he was wrong about the Keys of Hel as well, they are machines like any other and they will make us stronger. They are desperate not to end up like Ferrus, to let their flesh fail them. So in the heat of their grief for their dead father they have done something horrific that has changed them forever.

The Iron Hands have committed themselves on a very dark path and now that they've taken their first steps, it's too late to turn back. They too made a failing of the flesh. Ferrus let his rage lead him to his doom, and the Iron Hands have let their grief turn them into monsters. They can see Ferrus' failing but not that they are making their own mistake for similar reasons, which is rather tragic. The irony of it is that Ferrus should have been logical about his situation, but here the Iron Hands should have been human about it. Ferrus' flesh failed him and so the Iron Hands cling to the iron as best they can, but they throw away their humanity in the process and their humanity is what could have prevented them from making this devil's bargain with the Hel Technology.

I also like the idea that there is a Chapter out there that doesn't see their Primarch as perfect, and yet ironically they should respect him a lot more than they do because while what he did was a mistake, what they've done is far worse.


LotN
 
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