Population: Estimated 2 Billion
Tithe Grade: Exactus Non
Special Notation: Undergoing integration into the Imperium vis the Achilus Crusade
Geography/Demography: Hot/Temperate, abiding planetary climate is tropical with a low degree of precipitation and storm activity. The planet has two main continental landmasses. Each are dominated by arid plains and rain forest zones surrounding a chain of large mountain ranges. The equatorial regions are made up of bands of deserts. The planet also possesses relatively small polar oceans.
Governmental Type: Indigenous Monarchy (reigning ruler is known as “The Caele”)
Planetary Governor: Not yet determined
Adept Presence: Initial/Low; the Ecclesiarchy and Imperial Guard have small stations set up on the planet’s maincontinent.
Military: The Aurum tribes have a primitive force of infantry and cavalry (roughly two regiments of each), nominally commanded by the Caele.
Trade/Economy/Addendum: Aurum is rich in promethium deposits and the rare decavane crystals (see below). In addition to its abundant natural resources, the planet is strategically well-suited to the needs of the Crusade and the Aurum tribes themselves are a fierce warrior culture that is nearly ideal for integration into the Imperial Guard.
The Golden Blessing
Aurum derives its name from the golden glow that suffuses its atmosphere. If it contained so mundane a resource as actual gold ore, it would be of interest only to reckless Rogue Traders willing to risk the untamed Jericho Reach to exploit it. However, Aurum is rich in a far rarer and more immediately useful resource than metal. The unique amber colour suffusing the sky and tinting the planet originates from its rare Decavane crystals. Decavane crystals can hold an exponentially larger charge than standard crystal batteries, making them highly valued for alternate weapon patterns and other military equipment. The relationship between the crystals and Aurum’s environment, if any, is unclear, but it is obvious the planet is exceptionally resource-rich and fertile. Nearly every form of flora prospers when introduced to the rich soil, and herd animals mature quickly and free of illness. Even the native population has grown strong and able on this unusually healthy planet, although the native predators are equally flourishing and the Aurans must strive constantly to perfect their martial skills to keep pace with them.) Some have theorised that the Decavane crystals emit a subtle, beneficial energy field, while others propose that they are the effect and not the cause of some undiscovered property of the planet.
Until the natives allow the Adeptus Mechanicus to perform detailed research, scholars can only conjecture.
For their part, the Aurans attribute their planet’s benevolence to the “Soul of Aurum,” a male personification of the planet’s will. This Soul actually has striking similarities to the God-Emperor—from his creation of 20 sons and their armies to a betrayal by his most beloved child. Their religious parables likewise show roots in the Imperial Creed. The original date of human habitation can only be guessed at, but the low gothic dialect and various cultural artefacts clearly indicate an Imperial history.
Combat is an Auran way of life, encompassing all ages and genders. In the planet’s past, scattered tribes warred for dominance. The tribes have been united for several centuries, but the planet’s predators ensure that martial prowess remains a necessity. As a result, while the Aurans do farm the fertile land and raise herd animals, traditional hunts remains a staple of their culture. The society has not yet developed currency; they rely on a barter system.
The traditional Auran greeting is to touch one’s weapon’s hilt to the other party’s shoulder. Non-lethal martial challenges are used to solve nearly any disagreement, from domestic quarrels to trade disputes. If a matter escalates to a serious grudge, the natives have a tradition called “splitting the rock of grievance.”
Aurum’s plains make wood an uncommon commodity, and it is unclear if metal ore even exists on the planet. The natives show a relatively advanced understanding of farming and medicine, but their implements tend to be made of rock and bone.