|Dreadwhisper hungers for human FLESH!|
Broad Spectra Signum-station Omicron Nu 647 orbited the dead planet of Angstrom I, named after the Angstrom planetary system that is perilously close to the cosmic blight known as the Maelstrom. Erected by the Mechanicum from the forge world located in the system, the viewing station monitored Warp and astropathic anomalies in that volatile region of space. Its proximity to the Warp rift, coupled with the Warp storm’s relative stability (when compared to other Warp Rifts such as the Eye of Terror), made it an ideal platform for the Mechanicum to study Warp-related phenomenon such as the effects of warp exposure on organic matter. While active scientific research is often forbidden in the dogmatic and superstitious Imperium, the Mechanicum was given sanction to conduct its experiments when the Ordo Chronos recognized its benefit to their studies into Warp travel and the passage of time.
A sizeable effort was put into studying the manifestation of psychic abilities in xenos organisms. A curious offshoot of this study was an investigation into psychic communication and telepathy between genetically disparate organisms. One of the Mechanicum’s primary research subjects was a large carnivorous reptilian creature of the Epanterias dubia classification, who was known colloquially as Dreadwhisper. As a Delta grade telepath, she got her name for the palpable aura of unease that hung around her, and her proclivity for flooding her handlers’ minds with babbling and unsettling whispers. Captured from Tranquility III, a death world in the Endymion Cluster at the border of the Maelstorm, it is believed that her species uses their psychic abilities to communicate with their peers, as well as overwhelm the senses of their prey while hunting, sowing panic and and desperation into the minds of their quarry to aid in their kill.
The longer Dreadwhisper remained captive, the more of a liability she became. Her malevolent intelligence would manifest itself in different ways. Initially, the Mechanicum only lost an occasional servitor to her violence and voracious appetite, something that was easily curbed with shock mauls and collars. But after it became clear that she was telepathically manipulating her handlers, she was kept psychically baffled at all times.
The death of Broad Spectra Signum-station Omicron Nu 647 was sudden and complete. Or that is what the Mechanicum and the Ordo Chronos would have the Imperium believe, yet they are not forthcoming in furnishing details of the final cataclysmic events surrounding the station. Regardless of their claims, what is certain is that the station is no long orbiting Angstrom I, and all of its occupants are gone, presumed dead. In select circles, rumors abound that the Ordos were conducting experiments bordering on heresy, ones dabbling in time manipulation. For some in the Ordo Chronos harbor a particular type of hubris and believe that the great Heresy might be preventable. They say that the right person in the wrong place could make all the difference in the world…
Curiously, although virtually all mention of station Omicron Nu 647 has dropped from the minds the Imperium as a whole, the Ordo Chronos has sanctioned a cadre of venators to hunt and capture a large carnosaur with probable psychic abilities that has developed a taste for human FLESH!
|Modifying the carnasaur head was the major element of the model that was converted, heavily relying on green stuff.|
This has been a long time in coming, something that started out a crazy idea for an NPC for the Curse of the Alabaster project that we decided to run with. When starting our Arbites warband, we knew we wanted them to have a strong 2000AD flair. When brainstorming about this, we got to talking about the Cursed Earth Judge Dredd arc, and we laughed about the Tyrannosaurus rex that Dredd encountered named Satanus. One of us joked that the Alabaster might have been carrying a psychic Tyrannosaurus when her gellar fields failed, and that they are now free within the destroyed hive city. After a little more thought, we realized the idea could actually work, and decided it was worth trying to make it a reality.
|All of the glyphs tied to the carnasuar's were shaved off and new scales were carved in.|
While working on converting the model from a Lizardmen/Seraphon Carnasuar, we went back and started to read some of the other 2000AD comics related to Satanus, namely much of the long running series FLESH, that deals with humanity using time travel to go back into the past to harvest dinosaurs to provide meat for a starving future. We were particularly inspired by one of the newer arcs, Texas, which featured a particularly ferocious Tyrannosaur nicknamed Gorehead who had been caught in the destruction of a Trans-Time base, and became “unstuck” in time and was able to warp to different locations. This gave us the idea that our psychic dinosaur got caught up in a failed time travel experiment conducted by a wayward inquisitor of the Ordo Chronos, that inadvertently gave the Tyrannosaur the ability to phase in and out of existence, using the warp to blink to new locations. And thus Dreadwhisper was born!
|A damaged psychic nullifying collar still needs to be added to the model.|
As I mentioned earlier, Dreadwhisper was created using the plastic Seraphon Carnosaur. The vast majority of the model did not need to get modified, other than her head and tail. For the tail, we trimmed off the many lizardmen glyphs and carved in new scales in their place. Although it was time-consuming, I think it was worth it, as it distances the model from the original. The most significant conversion, however was modifying the carnosaur’s head. While we had hoped to use one of the stock heads, neither really looked enough like a Tyrannosaurus rex. The first had a really short, almost simian appearance. The other, while looking more like a Tyrannosaur, did not have eyes, and instead had horns in their place. These horns, however were located extremely close to the creature’s nostrils, making it as though it had not brain to speak of. To get around this, we opted to simply re-sculpt the upper part of the carnosaur’s face, enlarging the region housing the creature’s brain and adding eyes. Additionally we removed some of the toxin sacks located on the creature’s neck. Dreadwhisper is not going to be spitting acid or anything, ha ha. The last thing that needs to still be done, conversion-wise, is to convert a collar. The thought is that it will be a psychic nullifying collar that was damaged during the Signum-station Omicron Nu 647 incident, such that it does not function properly anymore.
With most of the conversion work done, I am going to try to start painting the model. It will be the first model I ever painted, aside from some minor dabbling over 15 years ago when I first started the hobby (I have left the painting front to Adam!). I got a really inexpensive airbrush to help with the process since there is so much surface area on the model. We will see how this all turns out… Any comments are welcome!
- Eric Wier