Lo! in the painted oriel of the West,
Whose panes the sunken sun incarnadines,
Like a fair lady at her casement, shines
The evening star, the star of love and rest!
And then anon she doth herself divest
Of all her radiant garments, and reclines
Behind the sombre screen of yonder pines,
With slumber and soft dreams of love oppressed.
O my beloved, my sweet Hesperus!
My morning and my evening star of love!
My best and gentlest lady! even thus,
As that fair planet in the sky above,
Dost thou retire unto thy rest at night,
And from thy darkened window fades the light.Henry Wadsworth Longfellow, Terran poet, The Evening Star, 866.M2
To sum up where we left: The business empires of the Conclave Venutiae have been built up over the course of almost ten millennia, starting with the early colonization of Venus. The families share the overarching goal to continuously ensure the most optimal – as in lucrative – context for doing business inside the Imperium. The six family houses have literally become masters of their trade in as diverse but highly sought after immaterial and material commodities like financial expertise and banking, stained armaglass and, in a galaxy where everything you have been told is a lie, secrets….
+ Venutiae di Medvicii +
+ House of Thrones +
It is said that a million worlds labour beneath the Imperium’s grinding yoke envisioned by its rulers a single, unified whole. The reality is very different: the Imperium is beset from all sides – and from within – by forces lurking in the dark void and best pictured as a million tiny candles scattered far and wide. Despite several attempts throughout the history of the Imperium, it has been impossible to establish a standardized currency under these difficult conditions making interstellar and -planetary business and value exchange difficult and not without considerable risk.
For millenia Venutiae di Medvicii has specialised in banking in this environment. From their immense Venutian palace Palagio di Medvicii they run an unfathomable lucrative business as financial advisors across the imperium. Their activities are spread far and wide, and by no means limited to currency-exchange and moneylending of a large variety of currencies like Thrones, Serfs, Credits, Aquilas, Gelt, etc. They also offer collateral-based loans, often on planetary scale for Imperial rulers in need of either short-term or long-term financial assistance and guidance. There are examples of how the Medvicii’s has secured entire hive cities as payment for their financial expertise. This has led to the Medvicii’s becoming unfathomable wealthy and, most likely for this very reason, they have occupied the Doge’s seat in the Conclavum more often and for longer periods throughout Venutian history than any of the other Horned Ones in the conclave.
The immense Palagio di Medvicii, one of the grandest constructions outside of Terra, is the center of this lucrative business empire. Its golden interiors are said to be adorned with treasures and values beyond belief…
+ Venutiae Tenebrosus +
+ House of Secrets +
The trade of closely guarded commercial and personal secrets is a lucrative business in the Imperium, where constant war for monopoly positions and profit rage. This is a war that is no stranger to Venus where both the major houses of the Conclave Venutiae and the countless lesser houses of Imperial aristocracy vie for power and influence.
The Tenebrorii have spun their web of secrets and forbidden knowledge for millennia after Venus was first colonized by mankind after the Great Crusade. They have prospered through the ages, for their products are always in demand and sold to the highest bidder. Their web of information acquisition spreads far into the Imperium and their web of influence and access work like the finest spider-silk on Venus, where secrets are harvested and transported for analysis later to be traded.
Their organizational headquarters are located in the dark underbellies of Venutian orbitals, one of which houses The Nest; the palace and epicentre of House Tenebrosus from where it spreads all across the Venutian orbitals. In its halls the Tenebrorii revel and plan their dark deeds and strike deals of secrets and murders.
+ Venutiae di Vitrovii +
+ House of Glass +
For untold generations Venutiae di Vitrovii has supplied countless Imperial worlds and explorator fleets with Vitroviian glass and jewelry of vitrified minerals in endless shapes, forms and sizes.
This has been an unfathomable lucrative business for the Vitroviians; Throughout the Imperium, from Holy Terra to the far-flung reaches of the Halo Stars, the Ecclesiarchy use stained-armaglass windows, glass mosaics and vitrified rockcrete handcrafted by Vitroviian artisans to illuminate and keep at bay the darkness that is spreading across the stars.
Palagio di Vitrovii, the epicenter of the Vitrovian family empire, is a floating hive city in itself housing the family patriarchy, countless lesser organisations and millions upon millions of serfs and servants. Like a shimmering shard of vitrified rockcrete it reaches both vertically down through the dense depths of Venus’ sulfurous atmosphere and upwards into the semi-transparent haze of its mesosphere, its glittering spires glowing like Vitroviian lighthouses in the venutian sky.
The family symbol is the Gorgonii; serpent-haired creatures of Imperial myth capable of transforming those who gaze upon them into vitrified rock unless shielded by Vitrovian mirror masks of black glass.
+ Merry christmas – and a world of intrigue +
First of all: Merry christmas and happy holidays to you all!
Secondly, we are thrilled to share the last three of the six major houses on Venus on this special day! Together with the previous three houses described in Part I they make up the Conclave Venutiae: six of the wealthiest families in the Imperium, whose stories of power and influence have grown out of the complex, explorative process building up the narrative of Ynqvisitor – our largest undertaking since the Pilgrym:
+ Venutiae di Monstrare + House of Truth +
+ Venutiae di Cythera + House of Water +
+ Venutiae Saggiatorii + House of Metals +
+ Venutiae di Medvicii + House of Thrones +
+ Venutiae Tenebrosus + House of Secrets +
+ Venutiae di Vitrovii + House of Glass +
But as Venus is the size of Terra itself it is also the context for a vast number of lesser houses, family empires and secret organisations who also vie for power and profit. Some are already seeing the light of day on our Discord: House Salnero, the Alicrus Family and the Bounty of Neith to name but a few. Something which makes Venus and its countless palagios, villas and resort orbitals a world of intrigue where constant power plays unfold in all levels of venutian society, from the lofty heights of the palagios to their labyrinthine, millennia old depths.
We will soon share our work on the enigmatic structures of the Conclavum, as we are honing in on the big scheme of the Visitor and begin to share some of the incredible miniatures that have been created for Ynqvisitor so far …
Until then, stay safe and enjoy the holidays!