House Gilliam: to Carve an Empire from Ashes
Lord Captain Cargan Brazil Gilliam
The hard-eyed, focused, and madly driven scion of an Ixaniad Rogue Trader house
Cargan Brazil’s grandfather had supported a policy of traditional and conservative mercantile concerns while the dynasty dwindled from outside forces. The noble house sat upon its resources and became more concerned with planetary affairs than with fleet endeavours. Only the aging Lord Captain Tigernos Gilliam, Cargan’s great grandfather, still captained a ship during this time. Much of the fleet was sold off to pay off ancient debts and to support ill-advised ventures. The House, already waning from centuries before, became more insular as it fell faster.
Tristan Gilliam, heralded as a possible saviour in his youth, only helped to exacerbate the hemorrhaging of funds through shady deals that fell through and riotous personal spending.
The tenure of Cargan as Lord Captain and heir apparent of the Gilliam house is marked throughout by his struggle with Tristan, his brother. Cargan threw down his elder brother after wounding him in a duel held in the highest of the noble courts of the Gilliam house. He stormed from the room and wrenched the Warrant of Trade from the aging dynasty, leaving Tristan bloodied and gasping on the floor.
A long, twisted tuft of Tristan’s hair was shorn from his skull by his own powersword, before Cargan strapped the weapon to his belt and left the immense hall of the duel, no sound heard except for the sharp echo of the younger’s boots and the quick gasps of the elder.
The Gormenghast, flag of the dynasty, left the sector Ixaniad for Calixis, impoverished.
While the elder House sovereigns snarled their official disapproval from afar, Tristan sent incompetent assassins at his brother as a warning. Lord Captain Cargan Brazil Gilliam returned his brother’s gift in kind, which became a tradition between the two that exists to this day. Tristan came after Cargan, and Cargan flew into the far reaches of the Calixis sector in search of profit, but found the Dark Eldar instead.
They harried the Gormenghast in the void between stars, slowly tearing the ship apart while abducting and murdering the crew. When Cargan finally defeated them, he and his ship were in no condition to withstand an assault from Tristan and he surrendered to his brother less than a month after beating back the Eldar pirates. Fully half of his senior officers aided Tristan in taking command from him and Cargan was thrown into the cold cells of the brig for a year.
Tristan’s excesses continued during his tenure as the lone Lord Captain, plunging the finances of House Gilliam back to near ruin too soon after Cargan had pulled them up from the abyss. Many of the officers formerly loyal to Tristan begged Cargan to retake his Lord’s seat after he emerged from the brig. The brothers negotiated an uneasy co-captainship amidst unsubtle assassination attempts, but Tristan’s position has become largely ceremonial as he has fallen into further decline. Cargan had emerged from the brig harder and feverishly ambitious.
Cargan, clear eyed, has aimed his ship at the Koronus expanse, electing to tear a new fortune for his house from the unexplored reaches beyond the sight of the Imperium, and to stab his cold forged revenge upon the alien earth of unknown worlds, the shaft of the Emperor’s flag driven deep beneath his feet.