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Fortress of the Just

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On Scintilla, the Adeptus Arbites is based at the Fortress of the Just, a massive rockcrete slab that sits in the relentless desert a short flight away from Hive Tarsus. It is here that Lord Marshall Goreman’s headquarters can be found, along with the training facilities for the arbitrator cadets sent to the Calixis Sector, and the Sector Judicial archive. The Divisio Immoralis is based in a cramped set of offices in the Archive, while Scintilla’s large pool of enforcers trains regularly in the bullet-scarred mock town just outside the fortress.

The Precinct Fortress on Scintilla is spoken of as a traditional command, a place that refuses to slip into abstractionism. This is a positive reputation in an organization that values tight regimentation and scrupulous adherence to procedure, and it is accurate. The Fortress of the Just (as it is known amongst some locals) has the usual balance between the judicial and paramilitary, and contains some of the most extensively experienced militant Arbitrators.

The weight of duty shows in the recruitment numbers, with Arbitrators and Chasteners finding no end of suspects and heresies to investigate, but also in the culture of the organization. Calixian Arbites take great pleasure in the blunt and brutal aspects of law enforcement, favoring quick and simple action and disdaining protracted research, conflicting interpretation, and unrelated scholarship when possible. While any loyal Imperial citizen in the sector would hold this attitude up as righteous, heretics and scum consider the Calixian Precincts a refuge for thugs and simpletons, whose enforcement of the law is too unrestrained, lacking the proper intellectual rigor and legal knowledge necessary to keep their actions within the bounds of Imperial law. However, the Fortress of the Just contains massive libraries in which an army of Adeptus Arbites adepts collate and collect judgments and information from every planet in the Calixis Sector, and if any Arbitrator’s justice is found lacking the appropriate legal precedent (or political clout), he may well find himself the target of an internal investigation.

Within the FortressEdit

Scintilla’s most iconic symbol of impregnable Imperial law is familiar across the sector, though few civilians have ever set eyes on it: the Fortress of the Just, the gigantic, sheer-sided black obelisk standing tall from the desert hardpan near Hive Tarsus. The work of decades to build, the Fortress holds a small city packed inside its thick walls. In the highest level, beneath the broad cap of landing pads and the thickets of auspex and uplink towers, Lord Marshal Goreman has his command center. Thinking best on his feet, he spends his day prowling through a chain of austere office chambers where his thousands-strong staff analyze data and synthesize briefings out of the endless stream of reports and alerts from across the sector. At one end of this command complex is a tiny, private Astropath’s eyrie, and there is no end of rumors about its use. Some claim that Goreman put a power-maul beneath Senior Astropath Xiao’s chin and extorted the use of a seer out of him, others that the tower is a penance posting for Astropaths guilty of crimes against their own Adeptus charter, others still that the eyrie has been empty for years, that no Astropath can be found whose mind can manage the horrifying accounts constantly transmitted to it.

On the levels below are the carefully guarded data-loom chambers of the Detective headquarters and the great libraries of legal texts shipped from Terra, including the sealed shut, ash-filled rooms where the most precious tomes are kept by a horde of servitors and servo-scrubbers. Below this are the massive vaulted chambers originally built for the Judges to conduct legal ceremonies and hold the most important trials, but these rooms are now mostly dark and quiet, full of stale air. The judicial cohort at the Fortress is often in the field, and most Judges prefers to use summary measures at the scene rather than drag offenders to the Fortress for elaborate set-piece trials. These rooms are most often reserved for politically sensitive cases, or those that could set sector-wide precedent.

Below these are the packed and noisy barrack levels. The Fortress is designed not only as a self-contained bastion but as a hub for Arbites operations for light-years around, and the Arbites it holds number enough to turn the tide in an uprising or to fight a sizeable engagement on their own. These levels also hold armories, chapels, evidence vaults, and medicae with capacity more then enough to serve the Fortress’ entire garrison. The Fortress could easily hold and support half again its current number of occupants if it had to. The lower levels are the technical levels, the forges, machine-shrines, and hangars for the Fortress’ vehicle fleet, and Verispex laboratories of breathtaking complexity and specialization. In the lowest levels, extending into the rock beneath the Fortress, are the giant generatoria crypts and life support machinery that keep the Fortress running. The Fortress’ void shield projectors have not been used in living memory, but they are maintained in impeccable order by a cabal of Fluxmechanic Magi covenanted from the Lathes.

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