War coven

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The War covens are the martial strength of the Daughters of Khaine.[1a]

Affiliation

Most covens are raised by a temple that is affiliated with one of the myriad sects of the Khainite religion, and the leaders of the covens are also the leaders of the Khainite cults. The great sects can gather hundreds of covens across their numerous temples, while the smallest sects can sometimes only gather one.[1a]

Caillich Covens

In times of great need, Morathi can call a Caillich Coven - a war coven consisting of a tithe of warriors from all the sects and under her personal command. No temple would dare to deny a summons from Morathi herself, and so the Callich Covens are incredibly mighty armies.[1b][2b]

Organization

The form of the war covens mirror the broader organization of Khainite society, with a strict hierarchy. Every Khainite is either a member of a warrior order or a leathanam thrall and so when a war coven is mustered it closely reflects a temple's congregation. Even the leathanam, while not part of the war coven's order of battle, will accompany it to perform menial tasks or act as sacrifices for bloody rites should no better victims present themselves.[2a][3a]

Just as the strict hierarchy prevents open warfare between rival sects in times of relative peace, it keeps the bloodlust of the Khainite faithful properly directed to maximize their murderous power. Between their skill at arms, their mastery of the shadows, and their ferocious speed, a Khainite war coven is a deadly blade that few see coming before it drives deep into their most vulnerable regions.[2a]

Leadership

Morathi

Just as she is at the pinnacle of Khainite society, so too is Morathi in overall command of any war coven she graces with her presence. Two powerful orders report directly to Morathi herself, regardless of which war coven they join: the handpicked agents of the Shademarked and the elite Scáthborn of the Vyperic Guard.[2a]

High Priestesses

The High Priestesses - the Slaughter Queens, Hag Queens, and Bloodwrack Medusae - are just below Morathi in the Khainite hierarchy, but different sects prefer different types of High Priestesses to lead their war covens. In the Kraith, Slaughter Queens are favoured leaders, while Hagg Nar prefers theirs to be led by Bloodwrack Medusae.[2a]

Troops

Sisterhood of Blood

The Witch Aelves and Sisters of Slaughter of the Sisterhood of Blood form the majority of most war covens. While much of their days are taken up by training and the gladiatorial combat for which the cult is justly famous, the members of the Sisterhood of Blood know that they can only truly worship Khaine in battle.[1a]

Scáthborn

The Scáthborn are used by most sects as elite warriors, with a higher ranking in the cult than the members of the Sisterhood of Blood. The most prominent exception is the nomadic Kraith, whose travels give them fewer opportunities to conceal their Scáthborn. Whatever their ranking, the powerful abilities granted to the Scáthborn make them dangerous foes and fierce warriors, and they often make up the most powerful formations in the coven.[2a]

Sources