OUT OF CHARACTER INFORMATION
Intent: I realised I had golems and power armour and decided it would be cool to combine them. On a more serious level, this sub is supposed to utilise a race I've criminally underutilised in the past, providing a fun Firemane unit to play with in PVE and PvP situations, as well as a group Firemane writers can make chars for or interact with.
Image Credit: Here. 'Steam Golem' by Shimmering Sword on Deviant Art.
Role: Heavy infantry.
Links: Firemane Industries & Technology, Kar'zun, Apocalypse...Not Quite Yet.
Unit Name: Granite Guard
Affiliation: Firemane, House Kerrigan-Alcori, Kar'zun, Siobhan.
Classification: Heavy Assault Infantry
Equipment: Firemane gained access to ARGH gear per this thread. Permission to use FFE gear was obtained here.
- Ironside Heavy Assault Armour
- Seraph Battle Shield
- Electro Cestus
- Paragon-class Personal Energy Shield (request here, permission here)
- Sky Strike Jetpack (request here, permission here).
- Heavy Bolter
- Lance Missile Launcher
- ARGH Flamethrower. All variants.
- Firestorm Multiple Missile Launcher
- Sonic Assault Cannon
- HST-1E Exterminus (support/bombardment, mission-specific).
- Firestriker Plasma Cannon
- Mark I Bolter
- Magnetic Repeater
- Eradicator Blaster (permission here).
- ACS-205 Advanced Dual Weapon System (storefront request here, permission here)
- Reaper Plasma Shotgun
- ACS-207 Cryoban Gun (storefront request here, permission here). All variants.
- Access to ACS-602 High Explosive Specialty Ammunition for slugthrowers. APE boltgun rounds.
- Shattering Bowcaster
Wrist and Underbarrel Weapons:
- ACS-207 Aerosolblaster (purchase request here, approved here).
- ACS-208 Wrist Ion Beamer (storefront request here, permission here)
- ACS-208 Wrist Charric (request here, permission here).
- Under-Barrel Sonic Blaster (storefront request here, permission here).
- Wrist Bolter
Description: Anyone who visits the Presidium of the Arx Aeternae or the palatial villa of House Kerrigan-Alcori will inevitably come across members of the Granite Guard. Tall, strong, made of stone and clad in heavy power armour, the Granite Guards are an imposing sight. On the whole they are a cordial lot, though they come across as stoic and aloof. They are vigilant sentinels. Provided the visitor is not an Eldorai, they will be polite. Space elves will be treated with disdain. The golems will not use violence or hinder them, but their contempt will be evident.
The Granite Guard is composed of Kar'zun, a form of silicon-based life. They serve Firemane as a praetorian guard and a heavy infantry assault force. When they are not in the field, they are charged with protecting the 'first family' of the corporation. Siobhan Kerrigan is a Dark Master and thus obviously more than capable of defending herself against most threats, but having an elite guard force never hurts. Especially if it is composed of tough golems. Moreover, she has children and a wife. The Granite Guards are loyal, but regard some of the eccentricities of their flame-haired mistress with bemusement, as many mammalian customs baffle them. They refer to Siobhan and Tegaea Alcori as the 'Great Scarlet Flames'.
Due to their history, the Granite Guard will not take orders from Eldorai. They work together with the Cataphracts of the Ascending Phoenix. This is a Qadiri warrior cult whose members see Siobhan as the daughter of the Goddess Kashara, the most important deity of the Qadiri pantheon. The Guards regard this belief with bemusement, as they know their boss is not divine. The relationship between both groups is a bit competitive, but not a bad one. Both have found common ground due to their mutual dislike of Eldorai.
The Guard recruits its members from among various Kar'zun clans House Kerrigan-Alcori has signed treaties with. After having spent centuries under the yoke of the Eldorai, who drove them to the brink of extinction, the Kar'zun seek to rebuild their civilisation and find a new home for their people. Firemane has agreed to aid them in this endeavour by providing ships, resources and tech. In return, the Kar'zun lend their talents as warriors, engineers, weapons smiths and artisans. These are all vocations the stone people have a natural aptitude for. Moreover, while obviously no species is a monolith, Kar'zun have a tendency to keep their word, which is something the 'Lady of Flames' values. Members of the Guard send part of their remuneration home to support their families. The Kar'zun have a small population and reproduce slowly, so the warriors are encouraged to procreate. Creches have been organised to look after the little ones while their parents are at work.
Being a silicon based life form, the Kar'zun consume an alternate diet that consists of stones and ore. Though religion is less of a factor in the daily lives of the Kar'zun than with the Eldorai, they have a fundamentally Deist faith and worship a god called Zak’zakada. As a consequence, Kar'zun clerics are attached to the Guard to provide spiritual counsel and preside over religious rituals. In line with Kar'zun burial traditions, dead Guards are cast into volcanic lava or buried beneath the ground so that they can return to the stone from which they came.
Members of the Guard benefit from a number of different privileges, including considerably increased wages. They also tend to be rather frank when they feel the need to grumble about the petty troubles of military life or express their bafflement with strange customs of mammals, such as mammalian 'mating rituals'. Some of the officers even do so in the presence of the Lady Kerrigan, knowing that the Granite Guard's reputation commands enough respect with Siobhan to allow such openness. It helps that the Guards are a good deal older than her.
The Granite Guard is under the command of Mazak'katha. She is a sibling of Nard'van, an influential Kar'zun clan leader. When the stone people were still under the thumb of the Eldorai, Nard'van acted as their representative to the Crown. He warned the Eldorai and Firemane of the coming of the Legion of the Damned, a group of Kar'zun extremists who had fled Kaeshana centuries ago to escape the subjugation of their people and now returned on a crusade of vengeance, intent on destroying the planet.
Mazak'katha was among those Kar'zun who took up arms against the invaders, despite her hostility towards Eldorai. A proven warrior, she is poised to play an influential role in her clan and joined the Guard as a means of benefting the Kar'zun. She owns a Phrik greatsword, which she can wield in battle with great skill, and is a capable tactical commander. She is intent on her people building a better future for themselves away from the influence of the Eldorai. She accepts that the Kar'zun were defeated and that there is no point trying to reignite old hostilities, but that is not the same as forgiving the space elves.
Kar'zakush is a senior NCO of the Granite Guard. At more than seven hundred years old, she has seen and participated in countless wars, watched empires come and fall. Kar'zakush has the mentality of someone who's seen it all. Or at least does a good job of projecting such an attitude. She is old, almost ancient. She's seen great conquerors and so-called deities humbled and freedom fighters turn into tyrants many times over. This long life gives her a dispassionate, almost philosophical outlook, as she is a bit removed from the daily hurly-burly. She still retains the characteristic dislike that many of her people feel towards the Eldorai for the suffering they inflicted upon the Kar'zun. is not the type to act rashly or given to flights of fancy, especially in a fight. On the battlefield, she is logical, calculating and disciplined. This is not to say that she is an emotionless automaton, far from it. She has a dry, sarcastic wit.
Kar'zakush escaped the yoke of the Eldorai when she fled Kaeshana with the help of pirates. However, she later turned on them because their brutal treatment of their captives disgusted her. Though she had suffered under the Eldorai as an indentured labourer, he hatred did not extend to other races or to elves who turned out to be innocent civilians. Subsequently Kar'zakush became a sellsword, working as a bounty-hunter, mercenary and bodyguard for various groups. She eventually returned to Kaeshana to help her people leave the planet in the Great Exodus, as it was doomed to be destroyed by a huge asteroid.
This brought her into contact with Firemane, and led to her joining the Guard. Siobhan picked the taciturn Kar'zun for her personal squad, which was charged with protecting Firemane's first family. In her dealings with Siobhan, she is honest and forthright, even on occasions when the Lady is in a mood. Kar'zakush is the kind of grizzled, at times cranky NCO who can't be bothered to fawn over a superior...especially one who is not even a fraction of her age and will probably shuffle off this mortal coil long before she does.
Unit Size: Medium
Unit Availability: Rare
Unit Experience: Elite.
Combat Function: The Granite Guard is a heavy infantry assault force. These stone warriors are only deployed in small numbers and only for serious battles. Their strength and resilience is augmented through the use of Power Armour. It offers excellent protection against a variety of attacks, though as a tradeoff it is extremely expensive. This, combined with the low numbers of the corps, ensured that the Granite Guard would never be deployed en masse.
Heavy weapons are standard for them, since their great strength enables them to use big death dealers with no difficulty. In battle, the Granite Guards are walking tanks, deployed to create a breach for their more lightly armoured, vulnerable comrades. They are equally potent in defence. However, their reliance on heavy weapons, slow speed and vulnerability to flanking attacks means they would require more mobile comrades to support them. They are a battle axe, not a dagger or scalpel. They are good for cracking enemy strong points, such as bunkers and heavy fortifications. Further fire support is provided by Mag'ladroth walkers. These are very slow, but tough, well-armed and durable. They are either piloted by human pilots or, in some cases, by younger, less huge Kar'zun who can fit into the walkers.
The Granite Guard excel at breaching enemy strong-points, making them ideal for trench warfare, close-quarter urban combat and assaults on fortifications. They would be best paired with light infantry though to screen them against snipers and skirmishers. Light infantry units and commandos could support them by harassing enemies and utilising infiltration tactics to bypass enemy strong-points and appear in the rear. This helps 'soften up' enemies for the direct assault of the Granite Guard, which in turn has the heavy weapons needed to support their more lightly armoured comrades against heavy armour and fortifications. They often work closely with the Disciples of Stone, a unit of Kar'zun sappers and combat engineers. One group can undermine enemy positions, the other deliver the hammer blow. Their strength and resilience makes them very potent melee combatants. However, their comparative slowness can be a disadvantage against more mobile opponents.
The Granite Guard are a small corps and tend to be deployed in teams. They are not the type of unit that would be deployed in huge numbers. Similar to the Cataphracts of the Ascending Phoenix, a Qadiri elite guard force, the Granite Guard is also used to provide protection to the members of House Kerrigan-Alcori. In that regard they can be compared to a praetorian guard.
Force-Using Kar'zun are extremely rare and so the corps is composed entirely of Non-Force-Users. Their tenacity and access to potent anti-Force-User weapons such as bolters and shattercannons enables them to fight against space wizards though. It helps that Kar'zun are very resistant to mental attacks. Due to their skills and fealty, Firemane has given them permission to utilise the rare Ashira's Maul, a war hammer made of Phrik, Seraph cortosis shields and Electro Cestus cortosis gauntlets. However, a lightly armoured opponent who uses a lightsabre obviously has a mobility advantage, provided he can avoid having his bones broken by say a war hammer. Use of polearms such as the Sarzmigar can also give the Kar'zun a reach advantage in melee combat.
- Tough heavy infantry. Kar'zun are walking rocks and have the strength of stone. They are extremely strong, durable and resilient - and get tougher over the centuries. Throw in the fact that Firemane has equipped them with power armour, and they are a very potent heavy infantry force. They can use heavy weapons with ease and are very disciplined.
- Due to possessing the toughness of stone, Kar'zun are very resistant to intense heat and cold, though sustained exposure can still hurt. Even without their heavy, environmentally sealed armour, they can endure the most fearsome arctic weather. Kar'zun, being an unusual type of creature, are almost impossible to dominate with the Force. They resist mental attacks with ease.
- Ponderous. Unfortunately, being walking rocks also makes them slow. Younger warriors are more mobile, but old veterans lack mobility. This has implications in combat, especially against more lightly armoured, agile opponents. Moreover, their size makes it more difficult to transport them. A Yazgid IFV can transport 10 human-sized soldiers, but by contrast only five Kar'zun would fit in.
- Being heavy assault infantry composed of big stone people, they are not good at stealth. Their appearance is always obvious and their power armour is very distinctive, which makes them of limited use for recon. They lack light infantry. They also have limited anti-air defences. In short, they are a hammer or broadsword, not a scalpel.
The Kar'zuns are a silicon-based race of rock people who originated on Kaeshana along with the Eldorai. They are strong, tough and honourable, but also a wounded people. The rivalry between both races was fierce and they warred for centuries, before the Eldorai Queen Ariane the Great wrested victory from near-certain defeat and crushed the Kar'zun, after the Eldorai had been driven to the brink of defeat. Ariane the Conqueror was not content with simply defeating them. She wanted to ensure Eldorai dominance for all times and believed only complete eradication would ensure this.
Relations were poisoned for centuries when she enacted a near-genocidal campaign. While her successors halted the war of extermination, they forced the Kar'zun into reservations far away from their natural habitats. Under the new, liberal regime of Queen Tirathana VII, the Kar'zun were been emancipated and given territory of their own. However, purists on both sides refuse to forget old grudges. When an army of Kar'zun zealots, who had fled Kaeshana a long time ago, invaded the planet and tried to wreck it with an asteroid, the Kar'zun community on the planet sided with the Eldorai, gaining greater rights in return. During the Exodus, Firemane lobbied for the Kar'zun to be saved and was able to ensure that many of their people were evacuated, though some elected to stay. Siobhan personally visited their settlements and negotiated with Narad'vn, the Kar'zun representative to the Eldorai Crown. Seeing the poverty the once proud species lived in had an effect on her, opening her to their perspective.
Today, the Kar'zun have been given autonomy, but a significant number have elected to travel the stars instead of living in areas inhabited by the Eldorai. These independent clans tend to be wandering nomads. Their superior strength and durability makes tough, albeit very slow-moving warriors, which is why several have become mercenaries or bounty-hunters. They are almost impossible to mentally dominate through the Force, skilled artisans and weapons smiths and very resistant to cold and heat. It was only natural that over time Kar'zun warriors found their way into Firemane.
At first the corporation did not make much of an effort to recruit them in notable numbers. This was partly because CEO Siobhan Kerrigan was allied with some conservative Eldorai nobles such as Tarissa Cadalthor for pragmatic reasons and had a pro-Eldorai bias. However, the actions of individual Kar'zun soldiers caught her attention. They showed themselves to be loyal, tough and dependable. In the aftermath of the Atrisia Crisis, Kar'zun warriors formed a significant part of the Firemane peacekeeping contingent that helped secure the benighted ruins of Jar'kai. The fact that their people are very difficult to mentally influence meant they would be less at risk of being aversely affected by the dark side nexus there.
Moreover, after the First Order's occupation of Kaeshana, a rift developed between Siobhan and the the archconservative House Cadalthor, when her former ally Tarissa incited an uprising that was meant to result in the extermination or expulsion of all foreigners and those Eldorai considered to be unbelievers. All these undesirables were treated as scapegoats for the loss of Kaeshana. Siobhan personally executed Tarissa upon the floor of the Eldorai Council of Nobles, making an example of her. She sought warriors she could rely on, who were not connected to an Eldorai aristocracy she distrusted. This resulted in her arming her Tygaran Sepoys with more more modern weapons. In addition she sought closer relations with the Kar'zun clans. Brushing protests from Eldorai nobles aside, she began to arm them. This had already taken place on an unofficial basis in the past, but now she made it official.
Thus the Granite Guard was born. A number of independent clans provide some of their most promising warriors, and are compensated by Firemane in return. Traditionally, the warriors send some of their remuneration home to support their families. They are treated as Firemane soldiers, receiving the same rights, benefits and duties as any other warrior of House Kerrigan-Alcori, and swear a personal oath of loyalty to Siobhan and her family. Moreover, Firemane has helped the Kar'zun recover cultural artefacts and heirlooms that were lost centuries ago after the Eldorai subjugated them. Some of these items were in the possession of House Cadalthor, which was forced to pay reparations to Firemane after Tarissa's treachery was uncovered.
Individual members of the Granite Guard saw action during the Galactic Alliance's invasion of Hoth, participating in the assault upon Outpost Veers, formerly known as Echo Base. A few select members of the Guard are directly assigned as protection for House Kerrigan-Alcori. An apocryphal story says that Lady Kerrigan once came from work and saw one of the stone warriors playing with young Adril. The gentle giant was so kind that he allowed the little toddler to ride on his back.
In the aftermath of the Serenade incident on Arkas, the Granite Guard was deployed to the island to provide security. The island had been infested by zombies guided by a devious hive-mind. An initial joint Firemane and Eldorai task force found itself beleaguered by unusually intelligent undead, who managed to turn the island's defences against. A storm kept Firemane from dispatching reinforcements. After the task force managed to knock out the settlement's anti-air defences, the island was bombed to prevent the plague from spreading. The Granite Guard was dispatched the cleanse the ruins of surviving undead and search for survivors. They were ideally suited for this task since their stony hides prevented them from being infected via bite and their natural resilience against mental attacks made them difficult for the hive-mind to manipulate. The island was put under quarantine.
The Granite Guard participated in the final battle against the League of Krolis. This was an alliance of Qadiri states that had banded together against Shahbânu Semiramis, who wanted to unite the Qadiri under her rule and ensure that her candidate was chosen as Saoshyant, the high priestess of her people. Semiramis was a Firemane ally, which pulled Siobhan into the conflict. After a long, bloody counterinsurgency campaign, Firemane was able to force the League into a pitched battle. When a Force-based sandstorm caused Siobhan's gunship to crash, she and her praetorians came under heavy fire.
The Granite Guards acquitted themselves well, helping their boss fight against a superior enemy attack. Indeed, Kar'zakush saved Siobhan's life at one stage. They clashed with Qadiri earth and fire mages, while Siobhan duelled Sahali Jai Bysara, High Mistress of the Sistren of the Eternal Flame and Jaziri of the League. Sahali destroyed Siobhan's lightsabre with her enchanted blade, but was ultimately defeated by the Dark Jedi in a fierce duel. Sahali managed to get away and conduct a retreat, but was murdered by traitorous nobles, who blamed her for defeat. Ironically, the same nobles had pushed Sahali into meeting Firemane in open combat because they selfishly deemed her all-out guerilla campaign to be too costly for them.
However, when they presented her head to Siobhan, she was disgusted by the betrayal and personally executed their ringleader. After the Granite Guards and Siobhan's Xioquo warriors had overpowered the conspirators, they were sent to Sahali's loyalist for execution. Likewise, the dead Qadiri general's body was returned for a proper burial. The conflict has come to a close, and the Granite Guard continues to serve at Siobhan's side, ready for any future campaigns.
Edited by Siobhan Kerrigan, 03 August 2019 - 03:58 AM.