|This article, Abhorred, was written by -AR-. Please do not edit this fiction without the writer's permission.|
- "For centuries were we aware of our... dearth, the limit to which we could build, to which we could achieve. But limitless was our capacity for knowledge. We grew and thrived, and in the precious form of resources and technology did the Enemy deliver unto us the push we had needed; the push necessary for our ascension to the stars. And whilst we were cast from our homes by the Undying, we took solace in the opportunity for ascendancy, and the hope of eventual retribution. Understand, we did not commit genocide: we committed to the very survival and advancement of our species."
- ―Orodemoni Fleet Admiral to UNSC 45th Fleet, advent of the Necros War
The Orodemoni, commonly referred to by the coined title "the Abhorred" or the "Aberrant", are an advanced alien species that originate from little known and largely unexplored regions of the Milky Way galaxy.
The Orodemoni originate from their home planet of Arbul; a largely harsh climated planet, desolate and nigh inhospitable by human standards. Over the years the planet has been subject to crippling amounts of industrial pollution and conflict-resultant devastation, due in no small part to the great tendency for conflict among Orodemoni nations, and is essentially bare, having been stripped of resources to fuel countless centuries of internecine warfare. Although the Aberrant have established strong footholds across several worlds near or adjacent to Arbul, the general lack of resources in the Atrum Incompertus system itself, coupled with the intensely rapid growth of Orodemoni societies, has rendered such colonisation largely moot, serving only to stave off overpopulation.
The Orodemoni themselves are a highly militant and combative race, whose culture is centred around the concept of sacred combat; this cultural value of conflict largely stems from the history of the species, which has been riddled with more wars than could be feasibly counted. The Orodemoni are also, however, on average highly intelligent, classifying by Forerunner standards as a Tier 3 to Tier 2 civilisation in most respects but space travel, of which they are capable but not readily able due largely to the severe lack of necessary resources in their home territories. It is this resource deficiency that has been the cause for the majority of Orodemoni wars, and by extension the cause for the belligerence that Orodemoni culture espouses.
Historically, the Orodemoni never had a truly unified governmental body until the year 2455, common era: the Orodemoni have always been separated by clan, and the many thousands of clans that existed before unification have traditionally regarded each other with hatred. Ultimately, it was not until the beginning of the Unification Wars, or Clan Wars, of the 23rd century that clans began to set aside differences and ally themselves with one another for mutual benefit. The end of the unification wars in 2455, and the signing of the Writs of Alliance, marked the creation of the first universally unified Orodemoni empire; the Joint Patriarchy, lorded over by the seven most powerful Orodemoni clanlords.
The rule of the Joint Patriarchy would go uninterrupted until the Necrosian invasions of the Aberrant's home territories, which would ultimately provide the Orodemoni the means for unrestricted space travel via captured and salvaged Necrosian technology, while at the same time threatening to cause their very extinction: this would directly lead to the desperate and survival-driven Orodemoni invasions of AUR territories, carried out with the intention of establishing a home-in-exile. Although intents would be to establish new colonies where military force could be gathered and a counter-attack planned however, the swift advance of Necrosian military forces would ultimately see the Orodemoni run out of time, forced to fight desperate and intense holdouts across newly Necros-controlled space.
The term "the Abhorred," which would go on to become the name by which the Orodemoni species would be known by humanity, was first coined by UNSC Army Brigadier General Masamba Ihejirika, who first fought Orodemoni military forces and labelled them as "Abhorred, wretched things". Similarly, they would come to be known by Sangheili forces as "the Aberrant," a term collectively coined by Sangheili military forces due to the unfamiliar and seemingly unnatural nature of their military forces.
In their own tongue, however, the Abhorred refer to themselves as the Orodemoni: the enlightened and battle-blessed.
Military doctrine and the practice of warfare have been developed by the Orodemoni for countless millennia, refined over the ages to a state of fine art: war and military service permeate every level of Orodemoni society, to the extent that UEG reports often erroneously label Orodemoni culture as being nonexistent in peacetime. Orodemoni religions and cultures are near all centred around the concepts of battle and its sacred, if not holy and divine, significance: the universal rites of passage for Orodemoni youths are the process of military induction and the first instance of combat.
Despite the intricate cultures and religious beliefs centred around warfare, however, Aberrant military doctrine has retained a strict and distinct sense of utilitarian efficiency for as long as it has existed.
Military service is required and expected of all youths, and welcomed by vast majorities, to the extent that percentages of Orodemoni citizens not inclined to service are insignificant. Military induction, as a rite of passage and as a physical process is incredibly significant, both in terms of an Orodemonus' social life as well as its bodily function. The process of induction, referred to often as Ascension, is one involving extensive genetic engineering, technological and biological grafting, and mental conditioning. Extensive biological alterations and cybernetic implantations allow Orodemoni surgeons, engineers, and overseeing officers to raise physical strength and endurance to what would be considered superhuman levels, while other processes allow for drastically increased mental capacity and resolve, as well as the programming of extensive tactical and strategic knowledge into Orodemoni youths undergoing Ascension.
Each "ascended" Orodemonus is effectively inducted into the armed forces of the Aberrant as an Officer, and delegated to combat roles per choice.
Noncombat support positions, infantry roles, and combat support roles are filled by genetically engineered troops or artificial-intelligence driven, automated systems, ensuring that Aberrant military strength is at all times significantly greater in proportion to the Orodemoni core population.
Fodder Infantry and Combat Support Units
"Standard" Aberrant infantry are genetically engineered and grown in vast quantities during both wartime and peacetime, programmed and altered similarly to Orodemoni citizenry, guaranteeing tactical and strategic prowess, firm mental resolve, and impressive physical strength and endurance. Though designed as fodder however, all engineered infantry are given the opportunity for Ascension and induction into the Officer Corps, dependent on performance.
In the same vein as fodder infantry, Aberrant aircraft "pilots" are purpose-built to man airframes. Differences arise, however, in that "pilots" are grafted into airframes, and receive distinctly separate cybernetics and mental programming. Orodemoni air forces also possess a separate Officer Corps, composed entirely of Ascended fodder pilots or Orodemoni youths who opted into the aerial services.
In contrast, however, Aberrant ground support units, the analogues of armoured fighting vehicles, are not sentient beings but amalgams of artificial intelligences and genetically engineered creatures, descendant from nonsentient lifeforms native to Arbul, that are directed largely by Officers, infantry, and air service personnel. Ground support units, while afforded the same organic ease of manoeuvreability granted to aircraft, are denied the same level of organic initiative and intelligence, instead being equipped with rudimentary artificial intelligence and coordinated by Orodemoni commanders.
As a result of the distinct scarcity of resources among Orodemoni territories, Aberrant weaponry has over time evolved to a state of intense conservationist practicality, the basis for armaments ranging from personal weapons to cannons being "rail-gun" technology. Despite recoil as a limiting factor, Aberrant weaponry is able largely to accelerate relatively small flechettes or kinetic penetrators to extremely high speeds: the forces carried by such projectiles allow Aberrant infantry weapons to penetrate conventional armour systems far more easily than conventional firearms, and for larger armaments to overcome even heavy vehicle armour.
In the same vein of utilitarian thought, Aberrant explosives are compact in size when compared to human equivalents, and yet are able to produce greater effects. Complex explosive mixtures capable of producing immense amounts of explosive force, coupled with casings designed to fracture into miniature microshrapnel allow Aberrant "all-purpose" explosives to effectively defeat both conventional infantry forces and conventional armoured vehicles.