I was fortunate enough to get two boxes of Exalted Sorcerers for the holidays, so I was able to do some mixing and matching to give each sorcerer a different and dynamic look. I also used some staff heads from the other Thousand Sons boxes to spice things up even more. Heck, I even did some minor conversion work on one of them by including some bitz from my box of horrors... er, bitz box.
I have already gone over my paint scheme in a previous post. I did do some alterations on their cloaks and head-dresses to make them stand apart, so I won't get into that too much (except for Ahriman at the end, as he is a bit different). Instead, I'll give you a little fluff/background on each Exalted Sorcerer, since each is an independent character.
Ahmes The Scribe of Magnus:
Ahmes, also known as the "Scribe of Magnus" was one of the Thousand Son's greatest librarians. When the legion began to mutate on the Planet of the Sorcerers, Ahriman did not even attempt to recruit Ahmes to his cause, knowing that Ahmes was loyal to the Primarch to a fault and would not countenance what Ahriman was attempting with the Rubric.
After the casting of the Rubric, Ahmes began to rise in stature in the eyes (or is that eye) of Magnus, becoming one of his most trusted lieutenants and apprentices. At the feet of Magnus, Ahmes learned many of the deepest truths about Tzeentch and Chaos in general. Finally, at the order of Magnus, Ahmes was charged with writing down every scrap of knowledge and wisdom that Magnus had learned since becoming a Daemon Primarch. It is said that Ahmes is assisting Magnus in writing a new book, which will dwarf the mighty Athenaeum of Kallimacus itself.
At certain times, Magnus will task Ahmes with going into the material universe. This may be to find a certain artifact, destroy an important Imperial Shrine, kill a certain individual- anything that will further the schemes of Magnus and his patron, Tzeentch. Ahmes is a superb sorcerer, and an able military tactician. Woe to any foe that crosses the path of one of Magnus' favored sons.
The Blind Seer (formerly known as Kaemqed)
Many millennia ago, Kaemqed was a librarian and follower of the Corvidae sect. Naturally, Kaemqed was convinced by Ahriman to participate in the casting of the Rubric. In the aftermath, Kaemqed was banished by Magnus for his participation in casting the Rubric.
But it was not enough for Kaemqed, for he sought something more- he wanted to be more powerful than any sorcerer, so that when he returned to the Planet of the Sorcerers Magnus would have no choice but to take him back. Kaemqed would take his rightful place at the right hand of Magnus. With the Encyclopedic Mathematica fully deciphered and in hand, Kaemqed attempted to call out to Tzeentch, offering his eye for great power, as Magnus had so long ago. Tzeentch did answer and promised to give Kaemqed great power indeed- but the cost was both of Kaemqed's eyes!
Kaemeq's power was greatly augmented, and his power to divine the threads of fate and the future became arguably second only to Karios Fateweaver himself. However, the cost was greater than his eyes. Tzeentch allowed Kaemeq to see almost anything- except a path to the Planet of the Sorcerers. Thus, Kaemeq's plans were frustrated, and he continued to wander the galaxy. Since, that time, he has become known as "The Blind Seer". Many Chaos warlords have sought Kaemeq's insight and wisdom to plan future campaigns against the Imperium. The Blind Seer often exacts a high price for the use of his vision, perhaps a great sacrifice, or perhaps an artifact that must be obtained at a great cost. Sometimes, The Blind Seer offers his vision in exchange for a role on the battlefield, as he longs to use his powers to destroy the followers of the false-emperor. At any rate, The Blind Seer has, either directly or indirectly, become a major threat to the Imperium, his foresight allowing him (or other Chaos Warlords) to attack Imperial worlds at exactly the right moment.
(Note- the head of The Blind Seer is from the old "Chaos Mutant" sprue from like 15 years ago- I still have a bunch, as they were so useful that I have hoarded them since. As for the book- that comes from an old metal 40K Inquisitor model. Again, I have a huge bitz box. Hence the Encyclopedic Mathematica is represented on the model- even if he can't actually see to read it! Oh Tzeentch, what a sense of humor you have there)
Nakht The Wanderer
Once a Captain of the Thousand Sons, Nakht was a disciple of the Pyrae cult. Nakht fought furiously at the battle of Prospero, using his powers to kill many Space Wolves. He cursed all of creation when Magnus whisked them away to the Planet of the Sorcerers. Nakht felt further humiliation when so many of his battle brothers began to succumb to the curse of the flesh change. Naturally, he was eager to take part in casting the Rubric of Ahriman.
After being exiled, Nakht and his Rubricae joined forces for a time with a Word Bearer warband known as the "Bloody Betrayal". During those years, Nakht took his frustration out on weakling humans and their foolish Astartes defenders. Although he did not participate in the ceremonial worship practiced by the Word Bearers, he did delight in bringing destruction wherever the warband went. As the warband (and Nakht and his Rubricae) went far and wide, other Thousand Sons sorcerers came to call Nakht "The Wanderer".
In recent years, the "Bloody Betrayal" suffered spectacular defeats at the hands of their ancient enemies, the Ultramarines. As a result, the warband broke up, and Nakht took to space on his own once again. As if by fate (for certainly there is no coincidence to Tzeentch), Nakht was contacted by Ahriman himself, who asked for The Wanderer's aid. This time, Ahriman said, his new Rubric would not fail, if he could access the Webway and learn the secrets of the Black Library. From that time forward, Nakht has pledged himself to Ahriman once more, hoping to make the Rubric successful, so that a newly empowered Thousand Sons could take to the battlefields once more, and cast down the Emperor for good.
(Note- Like a good Chaos fanatic, I am always looking to the past for inspiration, I decided to make Nakht's disc a "Fungoid Disc", which comes from like 2nd edition or something. I used tentacles from Chaos Spawn to make the "fungoid" effect. I didn't use putty to mutate the disc, as I think the finished looking top contrasts greatly with the writhing tentacles.)
Naturally, Ahriman is one of the centerpieces of the army. And like all such models, he should be tied into the army, and yet still somehow distinct. I painted his armor and gold trim just as I had the rest of the Thousand Sons. I also did the gemstones the same way as other Thousand Sons.
The real difference comes in two areas. First, his head-dress / horns. Rather than do them gold (like other Thousand Sons), I painted them silver. After all, the forces of Tzeentch have "Silver Towers", so I thought silver would tie into that and make him stand out.
The other big difference is the cloak. While all my Exalted Sorcerers have variations on their cloaks, I also tied them together. With Ahriman, I went in a completely different direction, by going for a truly dark color. I painted the cloak Kantor Blue, then did washes of Nuln Oil (in the recesses) and a general wash of Nightshade. Then, I highlighted with slightly lighter blues. This gave the cloak a dark but deep color, contrasting him nicely with the brighter cloaks of the other sorcerers.
One thing I am disappointed with in the model is that there is virtually NO posibility. He goes together only one way. I was too nervous to cut the model- if I cut wrong it could be ruined (this isn't the Death Guard or Khorne Bezerkers, where a few tentacles or lots of blood can hide a multitude of sins). As a result, my Ahriman is very "average" looking. I love the model, but as I was unwilling to risk it, he now looks like every other Ahriman (which goes against these old converter's bones). Also, by accident, I dropped him on his head, breaking his horns. One managed to stay on, the other was just such a small break that the glue literally didn't have enough surface area to stay connected. He still looks fine, even slightly battle-worn.
So, there you have it, ladies and gentlemen. My Thousand Sons force continues to grow apace. I hope to be able to finish more in the next few weeks. Once all of that is done, I intend on starting Magnus. As Magnus is the other centerpiece, I want to make sure I have my army's look completely down. As of now, I have NO idea what I'll be doing with him LOL...
Until next time... Stay thirsty my friends.