"Woe is known as a hell world. I can attest to the truth of this, as I have set foot upon its surface."
–From the Journal of Inquisitor Felroth Gelt 3.305.778.M41
Woe is a solitary world beneath a weak, dim star. The surface is a drear place of endless, oily bogs, shrouded in malodorous mists. Beasts of poisonous aspect slithered away from every mired step, and rebreathers struggle with the thick air. Psykers upon Woe feel only a withdrawl of life, a silence. Woe's swamps and black lakes swallow anything they can: ruined vessels and people alike. It is likely that the planet must be littered with a thousand years of those who came and were doomed to never leave again when their ships sank beneath the surface.
Such visitations date as far back as the Angevin Crusade, though likely many have happened prior to it as well. During the crusade, the forces of High Admiral Vaakkon attempted a landing upon Woe, in which they lost 100,000 troops due to lack of strategic intelligence.
Woe was visited by Inquisitor Felroth Gelt and his retinue in 770.M41 whilst pursuing survivors of the Brotherhood of the Horned Darkness chaos cult controlled by the daemon Balphomael. The cultists sought to enact a machina psykana to manifest an unholy rite of Balphomael, and were forced to do so hastily and desperately by the approaching Inquisitorial retinue and were slaughtered all by Gelt and his men. That was when the alien soul of Woe awoke fully. An enormous shadow rose within the mists; the landscape shuddered and a tide of stench, filth, and decaying mud buried half of Gelt's retinue.
They quickly retreated from the barely-glimpsed behemoth, whose very movements sent tides throughout the swamp that threatened to overtake them. As they ran, other behemoths awakened to loom from the encompassing fogs. As they escaped the planet and the great beasts, they placed a warning beacon in orbit, declaring the world interdicted in the name of the God–Emperor. Inquisitor Gelt has since ensured that vessels of Battlefleet Calixis maintain that order, in case other heretics should try to accomplish what the servants of the Horned Darkness could not.
Contrary to the views of the Ordo Xenos, Inquisitor Felroth Gelt believs the world itself to be an entity, its xenos life in some way beholden to that slow–thinking leviathan. In 778.M41, runic scripts were discovered on Woe and found to be of Eldar origin, but what this means for the planet and its origins is unknown. These same runes were found to be identical to ones later discovered on Seedworld AFG:218, an Eldar maiden world.
Recently, Woe has had the attention of Cardinal Quiro Olranna of the Josian Arch-Diocese. In an effort to keep the light of the God-Emperor shining on the world, she has constructed an orbital shrine to keep an eye on the void around Woe. However, what she truly desires is to launch a crusade to cleanse the death world once and for all and destroy all heretics and aliens she finds there in order to uncover the truth of the alien horror at the core of the planet (if such a creature exists) and destroy it. Without the support of the Sector Synod, however, such an effort would be impossible to sanction.
Black Janix Venom
This is derived from the venom of the Black Janix snake found on the death world of Woe in the Josian Reach. Victims, who survive, are traumatized by the horrific hallucinations this deadly venom brings (victims must also roll on the Hallucinogen Effects Table).
Cost 800ea, Rare