Lyudmilla Shanina

Lyudmilla is from Zhetlov Solus in the Tungusk Sector and has the self-sufficiency and military talent that would be expected from anyone from that world. From early into her military training on her homeworld it became clear that she had an amazing talent as a sniper, there was little that she could not hit given a good gun and some time to take the shot. It was therefore no surprise to anyone that she was recruited into the 118th Solus Rifles as a sniper specialist.

Much of the unit’s work was within the Tungusk sector as they worked to put down rebellions and various other troubles around the sector. Given their loyalty to the Imperium and their reputation, they were called on quite a lot and Lyudmilla ended up travelling around a lot more than she expected to.

Towards the end of her term of military service (after which it was expected that her social position was likely to rise, she was excellent at what she did after all) the unit was actually asked to go help with something outside of the sector. Word had come through of problems in the Maginot Grid, and given their experience with Fortress Worlds they went to see what they could do.

Months on and the unit were bogged down in slow, torturous warfare which was wearing on them. Then the real trouble started, the various psykers started exploding and depositing bugs everywhere and things got very nasty indeed. As a sniper unit they were tasked with taking down any potential danger from infected psykers before they exploded, taking them down with precision shots.

This is how she came to the attention of Inquisitor Wrathchild as his group were after a group of infected Psykers who were trying to get away as they realised that they were being hunted. The Inquisitor’s group got into some trouble and was surprised when the Psyker they were battling fell over dead at their feet, a very precise hole through their head from a long las. Impressed by her accuracy, especially given that her unit were still some distance away when she made the shot, he worked with them to clear the threat from the Psychneuein and once it was dealt with made her an offer to continue working with him. Seeing the good that he could do, she decided to follow and lend him her abilities.

Since then she has shown impeccable loyalty and an especially strong ability to follow orders. There was an incident where she was asked to assist another Inquisitor because he was embarked on an investigation that Wrathchild had an interest in. Wrathchild told her that she should obey the other Inquisitor’s orders as though they were his own. The other Inquisitor was not best pleased with her presence and ordered her not to assist him in any way.

However Lyudmilla felt about having her abilities sidelined she did not complain, nor offer any unsolicited advice or aid in any way. Unfortunately the group got into deep trouble as the other Inquisitor’s tactics drew the attention of a cult that was embedded in the area. The cult attacked them and a vicious fight ensued. Lyudmilla was nearby in a sniper position and started to slowly take the cultists out one by one, being careful not to offer any direct aid to the Inquisitor as per his instructions.

Every member of the group, bar the Inquisitor, got out alive and it is likely that he would also have survived if she had aided him. When questioned on this afterwards there was a suggestion that it was done as an act of revenge, but it became clear that it was solely because she was following the letter of his instructions, he had not ordered her not to aid the others so she was able to do so, but due to the orders he had given she could not lift a finger to help the Inquisitor without him asking for the help, which he did not manage to do in the heat of battle.

Whilst many view this incident as something to perhaps fear about Lyudmilla, in a way she sees it as a personal failure. That one of them did not make it back, even if that was due to his own orders, does not sit well with her.

When he was putting together his retinue to take with him into the Tungusk Sector, it made perfect sense to take her along, as a native who has fought many battles in the Sector she has some knowledge that he would struggle to get from anywhere else. Whether or not she is pleased to be finally returning home is hard to discern, a quiet and closed off character she does not speak much of her childhood there or how the whole situation makes her feel.