Xanatov was born aboard the Universe-class mass conveyor Brimstone, captained by Lady Arda of the Helfire Dynasty. His parents were low-level deckhands, little better than indentured servants who owed nearly their entire existence to House Hellfire. Xanatov was a fairly unremarkable child in his early years, being put to work on the vessel as soon as he was old enough to be useful. His small size made him ideal for squeezing into the small maintenance and ventilation shafts that were too narrow for adult crew, which quickly proved very useful to the ship’s engineering and maintenance teams. As his life aboard the Brimstone continued however, he began to notice something odd. Sometimes, people would speak without moving their lips. It didn’t take him long to begin to realize that he was hearing people’s thoughts. At first it was just their surface thoughts and subconscious musings, but soon he began to read deeper, more hidden and personal secrets buried far within a person’s psyche. This ability frightened and fascinated him. Every imperial citizen, even a void born like himself, had heard of witches and the dangers they represented, but he could not help himself. He often used his ability to squeeze through the ventilation shafts in order to sneak his way into parts of the ship he should not be in, and eavesdrop on people’s minds as they made their way about their business. Most minds, ultimately, were boring and filled only with trivial matters, but one day that changed.

The Brimstone made a rendezvous with another, much smaller vessel, and soon a cargo shuttle came across to one of the landing bays. Xanatov was hiding in one of the adjoining maintenance shafts as the guests disembarked from the shuttle, leading a pair of servitors towing a large palette of carefully secured cargo containers. Here was a new visitor, a new mind, and Xanatov could not resist. He peered into the newcomer’s thoughts, and what he found terrified him. the mind was like a steel trap, rigidly controlled, unlike anything he had ever encountered before, but non the less something slipped through: artifacts, alien and twisted to the eye, packed carefully into cargo containers identical to the ones now disembarking from the shuttle. And suddenly another mind was in his, another presence twisted and horrible, and above all, hungry. He screamed, and with that scream came a discharge of all the psychic power he had been containing until now. Frost coated every surface as the temperature suddenly dropped, and blue witchlight flickered in the air as the grate on his maintenance shaft exploded outwards and Xanatov came tumbling out. His piercing shrieks continued until he fell into unconsciousness and he knew no more.

When Xanatov awoke, he found himself aboard the Black Ships, confined to a psyker proof cell. He had no memory of his confinement or transport to the Black Ships, but the memory of the alien artifacts he had witnessed, and that insatiable mind that had briefly touched his, would never leave him.

He spent several years aboard the Black Ships as they made their slow circuit back to Terra, whereupon he was admitted as a novitiate into the Adeptus Astra Telepathica, due to his natural strong talent for telepathy, and transported to the City of Sight where he began his training under the Scholastica Psykana. The following training and indoctrination lasted for years, and was arduous to the point of near torture. The final ceremony into the Astra Telepathica was horrible, wonderous, and lifechanging all at once. A hundred at a time, they were ushered into the Emperor palace and prostrated themselves before the Emperor Himself within His Golden Throne, where one by one He touched each of their mind with His own, and remade them. It was the worst agony of Xanatov’s life, and the most awe-inspiring. He was struck blind immediately by the process, and was a shaking incoherent mess for days after. Twelve others succumbed to madness and were exiled into containment, while four others simply dropped dead on the spot.

After becoming a fully initiated Astropath, he spent many years initially working as a member of the Choir on Terra, relaying messages to and from Imperial worlds, and attending to the Astronomican. One day while making his way through the silent halls of the Whispering Tower, something unthinkable happened. An initiate in a cell he was passing, practicing his psyker abilities in unsanctioned conditions, lost control and opened his mind fully to the warp. Xanatov reacted instantly, his memories of his own childhood experience at the forefront of this thoughts. He clamped down on the initiate’s mind like a vice, and with great difficulty, kept him contained until the Black Sentinels could be summoned and executed the rogue initiate. He was credited with preventing a potential Warp incursion, and not long afterwards he was quietly summoned to the secretive Cryptaesthesian order, a branch of Astropaths dedicated to watching over the psychic integrity of the Astropathic Choir. His actions in quelling he rogue initiate had gained their attention, and he was granted admittance into the Cryptaesthesian order and trained in their secrets.

Some years later when House Eucleidys requested the Adeptus Astra Telepathica supply a Choir for their vessel The Perilous Dawn, Xanatov was chosen as Choir Master. It was deemed expedient to quietly assign a Cryptaesthesian to the role, as the nature of the Rogue Trader vessel’s voyages into the void carried in increased risk to the stability of the Choir’s minds. A detachment of Black Sentinels was also supplied, both to protect the Choir from harm, and to protect the rest of the ship from them, should the unthinkable need arise. As a Cryptaesthesian, Xanatov is held in much higher trust by the Black Sentinels than a typical Astropath, though if the need arose, they would be prepared to put him down as quickly as any other.

30 Companions

Astropathic Choir

  • Wiglas Ehrhard – 5’11, 75 yrs old, white hair and close trimmed white beard, dignified appearance, despite the natural palor and gauntness of an astropath, senior member of the choir.
  • Volkmarus Lank
  • Esmaralda Aver
  • Hannus Freitaler
  • Irmine Sarneringen

Black Sentinals

  • Commander Boris Nitziev -Black Sentinels detachment commander, former Imperial Guard veteran 6’4 black hair and eyes, dour demenour, utterly professional.
  • Sgt. Ferdinand Zimmerman – Black Sentinels 2IC, 5’11, Blond, despises psykers and considers them unfortunately necessary vermin. These views are held in check by his commander, but otherwise would keep psykers on a much tighter leash.
  • Cpl. Hannus Freitaler
  • Cpl. Jacob Moescher
  • Cpl. Waldor Fasolt
  • Cpl. Heinusch Aschen
  • Henning Ulli
  • Gerold Siegenhausen
  • Fritschold Mader
  • Lehenhard Kreutzhof
  • Erkenbrand Klein
  • Volker Wurfeller
  • Burgolf Garten
  • Fleugweiner Beil
  • Lazarus Vodfer
  • Wernusch Dietersmann
  • Gunther Aren
  • Tilusch Rheden
  • Bartomar Mehl
  • Markwardt Drucker
  • Kastor Julbach
  • Wenzel Schaeffer


  • Friedegar Braun – Xanatov’s personal attendant and valet. 40s, 5’9, thinning brown hair, unobtrusive appearance, hired by Xanatov not long after joining the Cryptaesthesian.
  • Wilfrieda Braun – Personal chef, Friedegar’s wife


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