The fourth moon of Sculptor II is an arid world of coppery soil and immense deposits of promethium and rare earth minerals—and has served as an Imperial mining world since the Great Crusade. More recently, however, it has become an increasingly war-torn world with much of the southern continent controlled by ork invaders.
The satellite’s doom arrived in 733.M41 when an ork Rok crashed into an uninhabited region of the southern continent. The crash sent tremors across the moon and threw an estimated 6 billion metric tons of ash ash and debris into the atmosphere, destabilizing the moon’s biosphere and making investigation of the crash site impossible for months.
Even when climate conditions calmed sufficiently to allow travel to the southern continent, early attempts to investigate the crash site ended in failure, with research parties disappearing into fierce dust storms that regularly swept the southern region. Eventually, a platoon of the PDF was deployed in specially equipped Crimera armored troop carriers and, after a month, a single Chimera returned to report the expedition was ambushed by orks. Only then did the true nature of the crash event become apparent.
Given the delay in identifying the xeno threat—and the dispersal of the moon’s PDF to assist with civil disorder related to food shortages caused by the months-long dust clouds overhead—it was nearly 18 months after the crash event that a regimental-sized military expedition was launched to deal with the ork threat. It was too late. The 2nd PDF regiment found itself outnumbered and forced into a fighting withdrawal, its military options limited solely to slowly the ork advance while civilians were evacuated.
Within three months, the southern continent was evacuated and abandoned to the greenskins.
Since then, the Hegira PDF has limited military action to aerial reconnaissance and naval interception of small ork craft that have attempted to cross to the northern continent. In recent months, however, the PDF’s air force has faced occasional challenge by Deffcoptas, and communications with a mining settlement on the island of Skylar—midway between the southern and northern continents—has been lost. It is feared the island has fallen to the xenos.
Recognizing the inevitable invasion to come, the Imperial governor has declared martial law and ordered the entire moon’s populace drafted into the PDF. Fortifications are being built around cities and at likely locations for amphibious invasion. Calls for military assistance have been sent to the Imperial Navy’s base in the Magrathea system. So far, however, with Imperial forces spread thin across the Segmentum, the only military assistance that may be available will have to come from Hegira’s neighboring moons.