Author Topic: The Organisation  (Read 2902 times)

Offline Brother_Brimstone

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The Organisation
« on: July 21, 2010, 07:44:58 PM »
The Organisation

The Organisation is very insular and secretive; the following report outlines that which I have been able to discover from various sources, with varying levels of credibility. Therefore, what is enclosed here should not be regarded as sovereign, and the intelligence gathered may be superseded as we learn more. Still, I thought it prudent to disclose what I have learned thus far.

Origins And Purpose

Depending on whom you ask, The Organisation has been said to find its origins anywhere from The Dark Age to much more recent times.  A theory I have heard put forward by several sources is that the Organisation was founded in the Dark Age to perform some task that was both necessary and relevant at the time, but has since been lost amongst mystery and legend. Proponents of this theory claim that the Organisation now exists more out of tradition and egoism than out of need – it makes those involved feel more important, but is a hollow construct.

Another, less common theory is that The Organisation was formed when a group of Inquisitors with similar views and goals banded together, with the idea that mutual co-operation could benefit all of them. This notion is inherently problematic as we may ask why there is the need for such extensive secrecy and why the ‘Affairs’ of the Organisation span the breadth of the Imperium. There are several answers that I have heard to this objection.

One is that the founders had become misled and had turned to the Ruinous Powers, and formed a secret Organisation as a ‘smoke screen’ in order to hide their heretical activities. If no one knew their purposes or the members of such an Organisation, then it would be harder to single any individual out for heresy. This leads us to the issue of why such an Organisation would be so widespread. It has been said that if The Organisation is a heretical collective, they have rather ambitious plans for the future of the Imperium. It has been supposed (by those who follow the ‘Heretical Collective’ theory) that their involvement in activities across the Imperium are all leading to the goal of perhaps toppling the Imperium in the name of the Ruinous Powers, or even just leading mankind to its eventual destruction. However, given the amount of power this Organisation has (albeit power which is kept rather hidden), such accusations could be said to be rather dangerous, and it would be well advised to not make them lightly or without basis.

Another is that The Organisation, while loyal to the Emperor, has some rather radical views as to how the Imperium could be returned to its past glory. For instance, I have heard it said that The Orgsanisation supports a borderline-heretical philosophy, the adherents of which are known as Temporians. The Temporians believe that in the same way the Warp can be used to travel through space in ways otherwise impossible, the power of the Warp can be used to travel through time itself. Temporians believe that if they can achieve this feat, they could do anything from retrieving technology lost in the Dark Age to bringing the Emperor Himself back in His former glory. If this is true, then it is likely that as with the ‘Heretical Cult’ theory, the Organisation exists to ‘cover the tracks’ of those within it and its widespread Affairs exist to maximise the possibility of their research finding fruition.

A final notion put forward as to why The Organisation could have been formed by a group of Inquisitors is that even though it has no heretical leanings, by keeping its Affairs secret it allows its members to better act towards their goals unimpeded, and by being so widespread it gives its members a lot of power to get done what needs to be done. Under this theory the Organisation could even be composed of Puritans, it’s just that they are Puritans who would rather keep their activities to themselves and have banded together to better achieve their Puritan goals. Still, such a theory seems inadequate in explaining why take such an effort to be secretive. As they say ‘An innocent man has nothing to hide’.

Another theory about the origins of The Organisation is that it was actually founded secretly by the Emperor Himself. This theory states that the Emperor, in His wisdom, had seen some event in the future that would either make or break the future of the Imperium and secretly founded The Organisation, giving them instructions to prepare for this event in secret, so as not to allow enemies of the Imperium to tip the balance in their favour. However, such a theory reeks of self-promotion or unfounded myth.

As mentioned, I cannot confirm nor deny any of these rumours for certain, but they have been recorded so that you may consider their likelihood for yourself and perhaps draw your own conclusion

Structure And Activities

There are two important points to be mentioned with regards to that which I have termed ‘structure’. Firstly there is the issue of how The Organisation exists and fits in to the structure of the Imperium, and secondly there is how those within The Organisation structure themselves (for instance, known ranks).

Firstly the issue of how they fit into the Imperium is a complicated one and largely depends on which theory one subscribes to with regards to The Organisation’s origin. One thing which is for certain is that The Organisation uses the authority of the Inquisition as its ‘base’ authority – an authority which no one, whether they have heard of The Organisation or not, can object to. However, what is not clear is whether The Organisation is an official (but secret) subdivision of the Inquisition, an official Organisation within an official organisation, or whether it is an unofficial collective of Inquisitors, which, rather than deriving their authority from their status as an official Organisation, derive their status from the individual status of each Inquisitorial member (after all, whether or not an Organisation is official, if it contains many Inquisitors, the combined authority of each of those members is enough to grant it a large amount of authority). If the former is true, it will most likely be the case that they have reserves of equipment and expertise which is specially available for The Organisation, but if the latter is true, it is most likely the case that The Organisation’s resources come from the pooled resources of its members. Either way, it is safe to say that any member of The Organisation is likely to have access to vast resources.

Secondly, the issue of the structure within the Organisation is no less complicated or mysterious than any other element of The Organisation’s existence. As a basic outline The Organisation seems to follow a hierarchical structure, with both ‘full’ and ‘partial’ members. The lowest rank of ‘full membership is Tutor. A Tutor’s job is to train other Tutors and to train Operatives and Reserve Operatives.  Tutors spend their life searching for potential acolytes who they think may be worthy of induction into The Organisation (as well as undertaking any other Inquisitorial duties they may have). Tutors are, as are all ‘full’ members, always Inquisitors.

[It is perhaps important to note at this point that no member of the Organisation is permitted to be part of any of the Holy Ordos, as The Organisation is thought to substitute an Ordo (as well as this, it is thought that if no member of The Organisation is also a member of any of the Holy Ordos, it will decrease the risk of conflicts of loyalty). The loss of resources incurred by not joining an Ordo is compensated for by the gain of the resources made available to members of The Organisation.]

The next highest ranking is Reserve Operative, which means that while that member functions as a Tutor, if an Operative dies or is killed you may be called upon to take their place. A Tutor who is also a Reserve Operative, if inducted into the position of Operative, must resign from Tutelage and transfer any remaining students to another Tutor.

Tutors and Reserve Operatives are generally earmarked to become such before they become Inquisitors, generally because they have proved themselves worthy to their Tutor during their time as an acolyte, but it is possible (while rare) that an Inquisitor may be inducted into the ways of The Organisation after becoming an Inquisitor (but this is only possible if they have never joined a Holy Ordo – once you have joined a Holy Ordo it is assumed that your loyalties lie elsewhere and you are not fit for The Organisation).

After this there are the Operatives. Operatives are always chosen from a pool of Reserve Operatives when a previous Operative dies, one must always be a Reserve Operative before becoming an Operative; it is not a position one can move straight into. Most Operatives have spent an extensive amount of time as Reserve Operatives, time spent distinguishing themselves, and it is rare for a Reserve Operative to become an Operative soon after becoming a Reserve. There is one (and only one) Operative in each Sector of the Imperium, at least in theory. In reality, because of the difficulty of maintaining such a large network of Operatives there can be periods of time where a Sector can be without an Operative before a Reserve is brought in as a replacement. This appears to be the what happened  in the Carthax Sector until recently. Presumably, the previous Lord of the Carthaxian Conclave was aware of the presence of an Operative at some point (as it is customary for The Organisation to contact the head(s) of each sector’s Conclave(s)), and presumably he has since died, explaining your Lordship’s recent, mysterious message.  Each Operative is known only by the name of their sector, preceded by their title of Operative (for example our Operative’s only designation will be Operative Carthax).

Operatives report back to The Overseer. It is hypothesised that there is one Overseer to each Segmentum, but this is on speculative; for all we know there may be only one Overseer for all the Operatives in the Imperium, but this seems unlikely, simply due to the difficulty of communication and organisation. It is generally assumed that the Overseer(s?) has(/have) a direct superior (or even several, although they will doubtless be smaller in number than the Overseers). Numbers decrease at each rank like this, leading to the single figurehead of the Organisation, known as ‘The Organiser’. His name has an almost mythical connotation and is scarcely spoken louder than a whisper, out of reverence. There are many theories about The Organiser, some saying that The Organiser is the Emperor Himself, some saying that he is one of the founding members of The Organisation who is somehow still alive, despite having founded The Organisation during the Dark Age, others saying that The Organiser is the High Lord Of Terra who represents the Inquisition and others still saying that it is simply a very powerful and high-ranking Inquisitor brought into place as a successor by his/her predecessor.  Obviously none of these claims have or can be verified, and are mostly put down to hearsay and rumour, but still The Organiser seems to hold a position of almost holy reverence amongst members of The Organisation.

There is only one ‘rank’ for partial members which is that of Agent, although this can be subdivided by those appointing the Agents, and they may choose to put certain Agents in charge of others. An Agent can be almost anyone who is not a member of the Inquisition, from members of the Adeptus Astartes to lowly mutants and hiveworld scum. Agents are chosen by each Operative to represent them in their Affairs. Each Operative must oversee the Affairs of The Organisation in an entire Sector, which is axiomatically a rather difficult task. Due to several reasons, Operatives most often represent themselves through their Agents. One reason is the level of secrecy The Organisation strives to maintain. It is hypothesised that within The Organisation, the less an Operative must ‘get his own hands dirty’, the better that Operative. Operatives that find themselves doing their dirty work too frequently risk being identified as Operatives or even just becoming too identifiable. In such a situation, a Reserve Operative is generally required, as the Operative conveniently goes missing – it is said The Organisation will stop at nothing to maintain their secrecy.  The reason for demanding such secrecy depends upon which theory one believes about the origins and purpose of The Organisation. However, even if Operatives wanted to secure their own Affairs, it would be unrealistic to expect a single Inquisitor to take care of all of the Affairs which occur over an entire Sector. It is entirely possible that two such Affairs need attention at opposite ends of the Sector, and thus it is strategically necessary to maintain a network of trusted Agents all throughout a Sector. It is because of this that it is believed that the ideal qualities sought for in an Operative are leadership, sound judgement and organisation, above qualities such as the ability to fight with guns or swords (although because of the large pools of exceptionally talented Reserves from which an Operative is usually chosen, the Operative will often be good at these things too). An Operative is responsible for their Agents; if the Agent makes a mistake it is both the Agent’s fault for making it and the Operative’s fault for being a poor judge of character in trusting that Agent to succeed, and while the Operative may punish the Agent, if the Operative’s Overseer becomes aware of this failure, the Operative will also be dealt with accordingly. Thus, it is in the Operative’s best interest to make sure his Agents do as they are supposed to. This process of elimination by failure also ensures that only the best Operatives remain Operatives in the long run. An Agent will never, under any circumstance, be permitted to become a Tutor. An Operative, by becoming an Operative, has revoked their ability to Tutor others into becoming Tutors or Reserve Operatives, and only an Operative may appoint Agents, so Agents are never given the opportunity to become full members of The Organisation.

To enforce secrecy, each rank within The Organisation has an Oath, with the Oaths becoming progressively worse with each rank. The Oaths dictate that the member taking The Oath will do all in their power to prevent information being revealed to those without Classification. Classification also rises with each rank, meaning the higher your rank within The Organisation, the higher your Classification (which would explain why the Oaths become more and more harsh with each new rank). The Oaths are rigidly enforced, and it is the duty of every full Organisation member to do all they can to ensure that a traitor receives the penalty outlined in their Oath. Only the details of the Agent’s Oath are known for certain; if an Agent reveals Classified information to any without Classification they will be killed without honour. This means that their status as part of The Organisation will be revoked, they will be marked as a traitor and they shall be killed. This is the most lenient Oath available as it is stipulated that the death should be made relatively painless (although the relatively qualifier is often a point that is emphasised). For higher ranks the Oaths are rumoured to contain frank and vivid accounts of horrific torture and mutilation and even condemnation of the soul, as well as the body. These Oaths are considered to be one of the main reasons as to why information on The Organisation is lacking, beyond rumours, myths and conjecture.

Finally, it is important to outline what is meant when the word Affair is used.’ Affairs’ is the catch-all word used by members of The Organisation to describe a situation which The Organisation wishes to influence. If The Organisation wishes a cult to be destroyed, that is an Affair, if they wish an official to be assassinated, that is an Affair even if they simply wish to ensure obedience amongst the locals on a tribal world, that is an Affair. It is thought that the word Affair is always used to prevent inadvertently giving any details of their favoured outcome or even what specific activity must be undertaken. Obviously those undertaking the task, at the least know what they must do (and often that is all they wish to know; for an Agent it is often the case that the less you know, the more safe you will be), but after receiving their mission briefing, they will only refer to it as ‘The Affair’. It is rumoured that every single affair across the whole Imperium acts towards The Organised; the end goal of the Organisation, whether it be the resurrection of the Emperor, the toppling of the Imperium or whatever else it is speculated The Organisation may be acting towards. The Organised is their all-including plan, and that which The Organisation is acting towards. Beyond this, all further information is purely speculative.

I apologise my Lord, this was the absolute most I could discover about The Organisation, and I have come close to death many times in finding even this. I hope it provides an adequate insight into the existence of this strange and shadowy entity.

OUT OF CHARACTER: A while ago I said I would up some background on The Organisation, and there it is! There's a lot of it, I know, and if i saw something like this written by someone else, I would probably, at most, scan read it, but i wrote it for the fun of writing, so even if no one reads this, it wasn't a total waste (i upped it on the off-chance someone may be interested and also so that I wasn't a liar when I said i would up this info). Anyway, if by some miracle, you do manage to get through it all, any comments would be welcomed and appreciated.
« Last Edit: July 21, 2010, 09:20:48 PM by Brother_Brimstone »

Offline MarcoSkoll

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Re: The Organisation
« Reply #1 on: August 01, 2010, 12:59:27 AM »
I have to start with an apology, I read this some time ago (seemed only fair as you made it through the monster I posted for Jax Lynn's profile), got sidetracked while thinking it over, then completely forgot to come back to it.

It's good material - I don't see any particular problems to bring up. Fits within the setting and avoids "wallbangers".

I had more to say than that before, I'm sure, but as it was over a week ago, it seems to have escaped me by now. I do still have a couple of questions though.

Members cannot be part of an Ordo - but you use the wording "if they have never joined" at some point.
It is theoretically possible to leave or move between Ordos - so is it a case that joining one at any point (even if later left) excludes you, or would membership become an option again if you left whichever Ordo?

What happens to "Agents" if their master dies? Obviously there's a degree of this with any Inquisitor, but the structure of the Organisation implies things might be a bit different. Is it usual that they might get handed on to the next Operative, or do they get hunted down and killed because they might know too much? (Both is of course an acceptable answer...)

Also, one question on a real world level. You've left all this ambiguity in, which is perfectly valid (and an important part), but is it set out in your mind what they do?
I'm not saying you have to tell me what that is - I'm just curious to know whether you've left it open-ended even to yourself, or whether the ambiguity is just on an In character level.
S.Sgt Silva Birgen: "Good evening, we're here from the Adeptus Defenestratus."
Captain L. Rollin: "Nonsense. Never heard of it."
Birgen: "Pick a window. I'll demonstrate".

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