The beginning is a very delicate time…

IMPERIAL DATE: 4858004.M39



The offices within the ancient facility were originally arranged in a clear, sequential order, spanning across numerous floors. But as the millennia passed, the once-organized structure now stands as a labyrinthine monument to its 5,000-year history. As you traverse the dimly lit hallways, illuminated only by flickering candles to avoid electromagnetic or electrokinetic interference, you pass through a series of checkpoints, each more secure than the last. At last, you arrive at your intended destination – Room 4552, Level 14, Section A. An ornate brass plate adorns the door, inscribed with the words “Scriptorium Primus, First Office” in ancient High Gothic.

“Welcome, welcome, my esteemed guest! A thousand greetings, and may the Emperor’s good fortune be upon you! I see you have successfully navigated the depths of our hallowed halls to find my humble office. Your clearance badge reads Beta 7 – excellent! This grants you access to a vast majority of our historical records without necessitating a call to Naval security. You wouldn’t believe how often I must have uninvited guests or unidentified bondsmen escorted away…

But where are my manners? Please, allow me to introduce myself. I am Quintus Pictus, the primary officer and first manager of this section of the Scriptorium. My role as Lead Illuminator may be a thankless task, but I assure you, it is of utmost importance. The Astropaths I work with receive messages from across the sector, and it is my duty to examine, order, and establish chorographical and geo-temporal sequences for the data. This ensures it can be efficiently organized and delivered to fleet offices for consumption by the Imperial authorities and decision-makers.

Astropaths, you see, are unique psykers who utilize telepathic means to communicate between the stars. In ideal circumstances, messages are transmitted “in the clear” using a standardized communication vernacular taught to Astropaths after their initial training. However, during times of war, when the Warp’s tumultuous tides reach their peak, entire Astropathic choirs may broadcast a single message in unison, encoded with intricate pictographic layering and multiple ciphers. The strain of sending and receiving such messages can be deadly or drive the psyker to madness… or worse.

Moreover, any images, videos, or extensive records often must be physically delivered by courier. It falls to me to cross-reference these documents against our Astropathic and historical databases to determine their proper context. Thus, I “illuminate” them, akin to the ancient Codexes of yore. Further complicating matters, we occasionally receive ancient echoes or newly uncovered data of great antiquity. In the rarest of cases, we may even receive a message before it has been sent!

But enough of such somber matters. I see you carry a data slate – how may I be of service to you today? Stay awhile and listen, my friend…”






In the dimly lit chamber of the Lucerna Astropathic Lighthouse, a hushed silence enveloped the gathered astropaths as they awaited the next transmission. The air was thick with anticipation and trepidation, as if the very atmosphere held its breath.

TRANSCRIPT: Spoken aloud by Astropath A-442 at 0241L

“Along the shore the cloud waves break,

The twin suns sink behind the lake,

The shadows lengthen in Carcosa.

Strange is the night where black stars rise,

And strange moons circle through the skies

But stranger still is lost Carcosa.

Songs that the Hyades shall sing,

Where flap the tatters of the King,

Must die unheard in dim Carcosa.

Song of my soul, my voice is dead;

Die thou, unsung, as tears unshed

Shall dry and die in


Lost Carcosa…”

FLOOR MANAGER’S NOTE: At this point, the Astropath fell off the dais and began screaming while ripping away the flesh of his face. Subject A-442 was euthanized at 0245L.


The echoes of the chilling verse lingered in the chamber, casting a pall over those who had borne witness to the dark transmission. The lighthouse’s protective measures seemed to shudder under the weight of this ominous message, a cold reminder of the ever-present danger that lurked just beyond the veil.



ENTRY 1: Day 1

Arrived at Lucerna Lighthouse today. The structure is immense and daunting, a testament to the Imperium’s might. Met my new colleagues, a mix of technicians, astropaths, and security personnel. They seem competent enough, but time will tell. Tomorrow, I start the important work of maintaining the data recorders for the astropathic logs. The weight of responsibility lies heavy on my shoulders, but I feel ready for the challenge.

ENTRY 2: Day 3

Settling into my role at the facility. The machinery is loud and complex, but I’m adjusting well. The Astropaths’ work is fascinating to observe, their psychic abilities both intriguing and unsettling. Dinner was a simple ration pack – not the best, but it sustains me. I wonder if the food will improve over time or if I’m destined for a life of culinary monotony.

ENTRY 3: Day 6

Learned more about the ancient architecture of the facility. It’s intriguing how it was built upon the remains of a long-forgotten city. Work is busy, but fulfilling, as we ensure vital messages are transmitted across the stars. The Astropaths are an interesting group, though they seem distant and aloof. I suppose their gifts isolate them from the rest of us.

ENTRY 4: Day 9

Had a small disagreement with a coworker today, a technician named Marcus. Nothing serious, just a difference of opinion on maintenance procedures. I suppose the stress of managing the endless transmissions is getting to us. Found solace in a quiet corner of the facility, away from the noise. It’s comforting to have a place to retreat to when tensions rise.

ENTRY 5: Day 12

Received a peculiar transmission today. It was locked away for further review by the higher-ups. Operations continue as usual. I’m growing more familiar with the daily routines and the quirks of my fellow staff members. My supervisor, however, is increasingly difficult to work with – always watching, always criticizing.

ENTRY 6: Day 15

The food here never seems to improve. It’s bland and tasteless. I can’t help but feel like it’s slowly poisoning us. I must find a way to procure better sustenance, or I fear my health will decline. Perhaps Marcus has connections? I also can’t shake the feeling that my supervisor is somehow involved in the poor quality of our meals. It’s like he’s trying to control us through our stomachs.

ENTRY 7: Day 18

I’ve noticed a pattern in the transmissions we receive. There’s something hidden beneath the surface, a dark secret the Imperium doesn’t want us to see. My supervisor must be aware of it, yet he says nothing. His continued silence only fuels my suspicions.

ENTRY 8: Day 21

Confronted my supervisor today about the transmissions and the food. He dismissed my concerns as paranoia, but I know better. The others are starting to see it too. We must uncover the truth, whatever the cost.

ENTRY 9: Day 24

The bland food is taking its toll. I feel weaker, less alert. I can barely concentrate on my duties. The others are suffering too, but no one dares speak up. Are we all being poisoned? My suspicions about my supervisor grow stronger by the day.

ENTRY 10: Day 27

Spoke with Marcus in hushed tones about my suspicions. He thinks I’m losing my mind, but I see the fear in his eyes. He knows something isn’t right. We must continue to dig deeper, for the sake of our own survival.

ENTRY 11: Day 30

I’ve started hearing whispers in the dark corners of the facility. Voices from the shadows, speaking of things that should not be spoken. Are these the voices of the astropaths, or something far more sinister? I can’t shake the feeling that we’re being watched, that our every move is monitored by unseen forces. I’ve begun to keep this diary hidden, recording my thoughts in secret.

ENTRY 12: Day 33

The transmissions have grown darker, more ominous. It’s as if the very fabric of reality is fraying, revealing the true horrors that lurk beyond our comprehension. I’m certain my supervisor is involved, though I can’t yet prove it. I’ve begun to suspect that he’s not who he claims to be. His cold, calculating gaze sends shivers down my spine.

ENTRY 13: Day 36

I’m convinced the station itself is alive, somehow feeding off our fear and despair. The walls seem to shift, the shadows deepen, and the whispers grow louder. My sleep is plagued by nightmares, visions of a city called Carcosa where black stars rise and strange moons circle through the skies. I can’t escape the feeling that I’m being drawn towards it, and that my fate is inextricably bound to its dark secrets.

ENTRY 14: Day 39

My loathing for my supervisor has grown into an all-consuming hatred. I’m certain he’s behind the poisoned food, the terrifying transmissions, and the malevolent presence that haunts this facility. I’ve shared my suspicions with a few trusted colleagues, but we’re all too afraid to act, lest we become his next victims.

ENTRY 15: Day 42

I’ve begun to see the city of Carcosa in my waking hours, as though it’s seeping into the fabric of my reality. The walls of the facility are crumbling, revealing the ancient ruins of a forgotten civilization. The voices in the shadows grow more insistent, urging me to embrace the darkness and accept my destiny.

ENTRY 16: Day 45

I can no longer trust anyone at the facility. They’re all in league with my supervisor, I’m sure of it. The poison in the food has weakened me, making it impossible to fight back. But I won’t let them win. I’ll continue to record my thoughts, my fears, my descent into madness. Perhaps one day, someone will find this diary and expose the truth.

ENTRY 17: Day 48

The voices have taken on a malevolent, mocking tone, delighting in my suffering. I can no longer separate the whispers from my own thoughts. My sanity is slipping away, replaced by an all-consuming obsession with Carcosa and the terrible secrets it holds.

ENTRY 18: Day 51

I can’t take it anymore. The food, the whispers, the constant surveillance – it’s all driving me mad. I know my supervisor is behind it, and I’ve hatched a plan to bring him down. It’s time to act, to put an end to this nightmare and expose the truth about Lucerna Lighthouse.

ENTRY 19: Day 54

My plan failed. I’m trapped, my every move watched by my supervisor and his sinister allies. But I refuse to give up. I’ll continue to write, to record the horrors that unfold at Lucerna Lighthouse. Perhaps one day, someone will find this diary and understand the sacrifices I’ve made.

ENTRY 20: Day 57

There’s no hope left. The facility is crumbling around me, the city of Carcosa rising from the ashes. The voices in the shadows laugh at my despair, relishing my final moments of sanity. I can no longer trust my own senses, and I know that my time here is drawing to a close. If you find this diary, know that I tried to fight, to expose the darkness that has consumed Lucerna Lighthouse. May my words serve as a warning to all who dare to venture here. Beware of the poisoned food, the watchful eyes of my supervisor, and the malevolent whispers that haunt these halls. And above all else, beware the city of Carcosa, where the black stars rise and the shadows of a long-forgotten civilization lie in wait. May the Emperor protect you, for I fear that my own fate is sealed in the cold embrace of the darkness that now envelops me…

Quintus stood in the dimly lit chamber of his office, surrounded by ancient texts and holo-scrolls. As he examined the cracked data slate in his hand, a troubled expression crossed his face. Weighing the fate of the unfortunate soul who had last held the device, Quintus sighed and shook his head.

With a sudden, decisive motion, he tightened his grip on the data slate and slammed it to the floor, shattering the once-valuable piece of technology into fragments. The sound echoed through the chamber, reverberating off the ancient walls.

“This job is not for everyone,” Quintus muttered to himself, his voice filled with a mixture of pity and resignation.

He turned away from the remains of the data slate and walked back to his workstation, where the flickering light of candles cast a warm glow over the parchment and ink that filled his desk. Carefully picking up his quill, Quintus returned to the task of transcribing texts, his hand moving in fluid, practiced strokes.

As he worked, an ancient melody began to fill the room, emanating from Quintus’s own voice. The tune was somber yet oddly comforting, a reminder of the long history that connected the Imperium and those who served within it.

The music continued, swirling around Quintus as he diligently continued his work, ensuring that the messages of the Astropaths would reach their intended recipients. In the face of adversity and the darkness that threatened to consume them all, Quintus knew that his task was vital, a small yet essential cog in the vast machine that was the Imperium of Man.

Quintus Pictus

Quintus Pictus, a native of the forge world Cipra Mundi, is a devoted servant of the Adeptus Administratum. As the officer primary and first manager of a section within the Scriptorium at the astropathic beacon “Lucerna,” he is responsible for decoding and preserving messages sent by Astropaths across the vast Imperium. Renowned for his keen mind, attention to detail, and unwavering loyalty, Quintus plays a crucial role in maintaining the unity of the Imperium. Despite the risks and darkness that accompany his duties, he remains humble and dedicated to his vital work.

Quintus Pictus’ contributions