Spoilers ahead. Page numbers are from the e-book.
This book is an interesting one compared to some in the Heresy series – it’s such a footnote compared to, say, Betrayal at Calth. Vulkan’s journey really is meaningful for himself and for anyone who has an interest in learning more about the Salamanders, and the same goes for Iron Hands enthusiasts and Meduson’s journey and ultimate end. These events pale into insignificance when compared to the more dramatic, higher casualty count stories of Istvaan and Calth but they do round out the stories of the Shattered Legions and Vulkan nicely.
P.190 – a Brontos-pattern rifle held by Narek the Word Bearer. A bolt action sniper’s weapon. I don’t think I’ve seen one of those before.
P.204 – Kaylar Norn, a Raven Guard apothecary, eschewed the usual white of that particular calling and had the prime helix on his left kneepad with a red stripe bifurcating his beaky helm’s nose – maintaining the black heraldry of the Raven Guard. This makes a lot of sense to me from a lore perspective – no sense in painting yourself bright white if you want to fit in with the rest of a strike force.
Not that I suspect a single other person would have listened to this track, but I kept on getting Shadrack by Juke Baritone stuck in my head during the Iron Hands sections.
P.212 – Dalcoth of the Raven guard appears out of nowhere in space, having been all but invisible to augur. Reflex shields?
P.264 – The Iron Hands are described as being plain speaking. They’re also pretty stiff throughout the book, in stark contrast to the Salamanders.
The Iron Hands seem to be suffering rather greatly from the loss of their Primarch. Remaking him is… creepy.
P.273 – Brutas pattern heavy-grade plasma guns common to hive law enforcement on that particular world. Not one I can find images of.
P.287 – There’s a notable rift between the Terran-born Iron Hand Meduson and the Medusan-born Iron Hands.
P.323 – Vulkan muses that the Iron Hands largely have little love for the Raven Guard.
P.337 – The Keys of Hel – Attempting to resurrect their Primarch using his metal hand and dark technology. Those guys really went off the deep end after Ferrus died.
P.354 – the Salamanders are starkly contrasting the Iron Hands in their demeanour towards the ship’s crew – smiling and nodding, unlike the aloof Tenth.
P.390 – Thunderbolt pattern plasma gun from Ryza forge world. This one I -could- find an image of. Used as a grenade… curious why the Sons of Horus didn’t automatically respond as though it were a grenade.
P.369 – Several void ships packed with explosives fly near enemy vessels and detonate, resulting in “a host of Sons of Horus warships… crippled or destroyed utterly”. The effect of explosions on void ships is not consistent between books – and how does that differ from the earth-shattering explosions brought on by the regular ship to ship weapons?
P.444 – Dusk wraiths – Dark Eldar, or Drukhari as they’re now known.
P.450 – Vulkan eats a Seed of Isha from an Eldar – which seems to allow for universal understanding of language.
P.513 – Fulgurite shattered, they saw a figure clad in gold as resplendent as the sun. What exactly is it about?
P.522 – The Great Unclean One Aghalbor calls Vulkan “Spawn of the Anathema”, then eats him. Unexpected. Then of course the expected trope occurs.
P.532 – Renski grew up on a border world of the Sol system tending to bovid herds. Neptune? Uranus? Curious. Some of the herd got mauled by a slythig, which puts me in mind of this poem.
A haywire grenade is mentioned as potentially the cause of taking out a Valkyrie. Been years since I saw reference to that – were they in 2nd ed. 40K or was it Necromunda?
P.555 – Cameo appearance of Andromeda. Cannot assume all the assets are activated…
P.560 – Dorn doesn’t want a hug but Vulkan doesn’t care. Naww.
P.563 – Dorn doesn’t know where Jaghati is. Except that he’s on Terra somewhere. Probably. This doesn’t reaaaaaally impress Dorn. Vulkan seems a little more sympathetic.
Vulkan isn’t sure if he could kill another Primarch if he had to. Dorn is firm in his resolve that he would have no problem.
P.573 – So. The seven hammer’d talisman is a doomsday device designed to consume the Palace and all of Terra, should things go south. Vulkan needed to use his regeneration to be able to put it in the throne and not be destroyed by the energy emitted.