The Tyrant's Cord
Pyurultide is one of the many worlds that drift through the Screaming Vortex. Placing dates on the events of the past is futile for a world so warp-infused, but—whether a day or a millennium ago—Pyurultide was a world locked in conflict. The gods Nurgle and Slaanesh fought for dominion over the educated and technologically advanced people of the planet. Pyurultide has continents but no oceans. The gaps between land masses writhe with a sea of insects and vermin. Nurgle’s influence was strong along the coast where this foulness lapped against the land, and here he had many followers. But the inlanders built magnificent spires that climbed above the blighted land. Driven by the desire for perfection, they built ever grander and more terrible towers. At the height of the inlanders’ power it was said their chaotic structures ascended without human intervention, eventually penetrating some dark heaven, where they entrapped angels whose tears coated the horrible spires.
At the centre of the inlanders’ spiralling sky empire was a dynasty of brilliant rulers, who held their people together through iron will and a horrible charisma. However, the Pox Tribes below eventually found a way to infect the flesh and then the loyalties of the high rulers. The instant that their hearts turned from Slaanesh, it is said the spiteful Prince of Desire smote their towers to ruin. The Pox Tribes consumed the survivors of the fall, and the Tyrant’s Cord—the symbol of the rulers’ dynasty—was lost.
Now Pyurultide is consumed by the unending biological warfare of the Pox Tribes. Each tribe carries its own strain of contagion, which defines its culture like a patron saint. With religious fervour they cultivate even more virulent strains of their disease of choice, and then use it against neighbouring unbelievers. Still, in the shadows of hospice cities and the phlegmy whispers of the dying, the legend of the old sky empire lives on. The gilded remembrance of the Dark Prince’s reign only grows brighter the longer they live in disease and decay, but a return to Slaanesh’s ‘glory’ is hopeless as long as the Tyrant’s Cord is lost. If a leader were to emerge wielding the Cord, hundreds of thousands of Pox Warriors would follow him—in rebellion against the Plague Lord, or anywhere else the new Tyrant chose to lead.