Rogue Trader: Into the Dark Void
Long before his ancestor Purity Lathimon opened the Maw, the Rogue Trader Trame Lathimon was paid a princely sum by an obscure sect of the Ministorum to carry their void station and their members out toward the Halo Stars. It is said that Trame, in a fit of petulance, cast forth the hermits and their station in a desolate system in the middle of the Maw. Trame eventually paid for his misdeeds (at least according to the hermits of the station) when he and his brother fought themselves to mutual annihilation at the Battleground.
Today, the outer reaches of the station have largely crumbled and are open to space. While it is still home to a few hermits, the station itself is mostly used as a clandestine meeting place for Rogue Traders and others to broker deals, discuss trade, and meet on neutral ground. While the Brothers of His Holy Light are too few in number to have a rigid hierarchy, their nominal leader and spokesperson is a stately and soft-spoken monk named Brother Cornelius.
Aside from the appeal the station has being away from prying eyes (other than the hermits), the station also appeals to a Rogue Trader’s sense of style and opulence. The main transept is richly decorated with murals and banners depicting the many victories of Saint Drusus, and the station’s preserved chapel is draped in lavish tapestries set behind a bluestone altar, which itself rests in front of a plantinum Aquila of the Imperium. It is here that negotiating parties typically stand when they broker their deals. In addition to these well-known locations within the station, there are other places that are favoured by visitors and residents alike.
The station houses a scriptorium where all manner of records are kept on the comings and goings of those who visit, as well as histories and other manuscripts left here by visitors for use by others who would visit the Hermitage. Additionally, a crystal observation dome has been placed on the upper levels, salvaged from a ruined ship for the purpose of viewing the majesty of the God-Emperor’s domain. Few stars can be seen from the Hermitage; most are lost in the raging colors of the Screaming Vortex and the Void Dancer’s Roil, but the vista is spectacular nontheless.
The Hermitage is also well known by Rogue Traders and other explorers as a place to leave messages for their peers who visit from time to time. These messages are hidden within the walls of the void station, usually in pre-arranged usually in pre-arranged locations throughout the outer reaches of the station’s perimeter. In order to avoid interception, messages are written in special ciphers that can only be decoded with the reader uses the key given to him by the sender. Without the key, these cryptic missives appear to consist of nothing but gibberish- an additional insurance against prying eyes.
Compared to Footfall or Port Wander the Hermitage is a decidedly small and modest facility. Still, rebuilding and refurbishing it into a proper station and trading post could be valuable if one was to attempt it. However, such a person would also have to establish his claim amongst other Rogue Traders accustomed to using the station as a clandestine meeting place, and they may take umbrage at being forced to pay for something they once had free. Furthermore, in order to establish the station as a valuable waypoint it would be necessary to keep it supplied even when the Maw swells and seals. However, doing this would do much to making a Rogue Trader known amongst his peers… and for this very reason Lucius Vorgen is closely evaluating the station’s potential.