Commander Laddik Hern Edit
"Those are some excellent teeth you have there, handsome. They'd look great hanging around my neck." -Commander Hern
Laddik Hern began his career in the guard as pretty standard fare. His brothers all joined up to the PDF for glory and honour, as was expected of all young men on his homeworld. He rose through the ranks over the years with hard work, patriotism and loyalty, putting down rebellions and crushing heretics wherever they cropped up in the system of Delve until he was commander of one of the largest batallions in the system.
At some point in history, Hern and his batallion were conscripted into a larger fleet and told they were going to put down an alien incursion on the other side of the Sub-Sector and it "would all be over and back home by Winterfest".
It was Hern and his batallion's first journey on a warp-capable vessel, and the morale was high amongst the troops, off to effortlessly crush more enemies of the Emperor! During transit, Hern's ship was knocked woefully off course by a brutal warp storm and found itself orbiting the death world now known as Stain in the Carthaxian sector. With the astropath mortally injured from the warp storm, it was accepted that this was all part of His plan, and Stain must be recaptured in the name of the Emperor.
Ideals of honour and glory disappeared within days of being planet-side on Stain, where the canopies blot out the sun to the jungle floor, and creatures in the darkness are hungry for human flesh. Hern's batallion were fighting enemies from all sides, not just the alien fauna living in the eternal darkness, but even the trees and plants would snatch unwitting soldiers from their posts. Whittled down over a matter of years, Hern kept morale high with war stories of the Emperor, and how he had personally cleansed entire planets like this by himself. They were to keep fighting until backup inevitably arrived, as the Emperor would never let loyal and steadfast soldiers die needlessly in his name.
So much time had passed, combat doctrines had changed to accomodate the death world environment, and when their own equipment and weapons had ceased to function, Hern had ordered the salvaging of their foes weaponry as a last resort. Convinced the fleet would recognise their mistake and eventually come back for them, Hern kept the soldiers fighting until there was none left.
Existing as a solo warrior in a planet out to kill him, Hern would not allow himself to be killed, under any circumstance. He had lead the finest warriors of Delve to their deaths, and kept them fighting for it, and would not allow their names to be forgotten. He became one with the jungle, raiding enemy camps for supplies and when there were none left, laying ambushes for the hyper-aggressive large beasts that dwelled in the depths of the jungles. Slaying them for sport, for their hides and for their meat, Hern kept his wits sharp, in the hope that the fleet would eventually return for him and the Martyrs of Delve.
Inquisitor Xerxas came into contact with Hern by complete chance. He had been trading with a Kroot colony in the Sobax system, using Anoke as an envoy, when he discovered the colony had been all but pushed out of the world of Stain by a murderous creature that lived in the darkness that operated with a lethal cunning and took the appearance of its victims.
It didn't take long after going planet-side for Xerxas to come face-to-face with the creature from the darkness. Hern was expecting more Kroot, not a well-armed member of the Emperor's Holy Inquisition, and Xerxas was not expecting an infantry commander with a well-kept mustache laden with trophies of his kills.
Hern did not have to think too hard about being asked to leave the planet under the employ of Xerxas, and the Inquisitor found an incredibly useful tracker and master of stealth to serve him.
Although Hern now has access to the vast collection of Xenos oddities Xerxas keeps in his collection, he still insists on using his personal modified Kroot rifle, preferring its reliability and hands-on approach to killing his enemies. So skilled is he with his combat knife, that not even the thick hide of Great Knarlocs can stop Hern from efficiently taking down his target.