Miniature Of The Month: Uthred Steelmantle

by Connor Eddles

Miniature Of The Month: Uthred Steelmantle
October 12, 2019 Connor Eddles

I remember the before-time, when snow did not touch the low valleys, and the sun still shone with pure and righteous fire. It was not this weak, wan caress that barely touches my spirit. No matter now. There is a new light, a new fire, and it burns within me as surely as lightning in a far distant stormcloud. 

They called me Uth then, when they noticed me at all. Bastard son of a skald, limbs twisted by the ravager-curse. What hope did I have of making a name for myself? I could not run, could not hold an axe or brace a shield. There were even some among the fyrd who pushed for the old ways, to see me left on the hillside for the wolves. But Lady Haldra had other plans. She saw my clever hands and dark, serious eyes. I was taken from the fyrdhall and put among the weavers and washers. And there I made such beautiful things, in the company of those who did not scorn me for my weakness. But it was not to last. 

Verminous and merciless, raiders from the western plains stormed the hills and put us to the torch. The fyrd were routed and slaughtered like sheep, and the rest of us taken as slaves to our conquerors. 

The raider chieftain had lofty ideas, and recognised my skills. He bade me make him a great tapestry of his deeds, forcing me to commemorate the slaughter of my people to sate his own arrogance. I wept as I wove the threads, knowing that my weakness left me utterly powerless. Unless…

At last I finished my labours, and a great feast took place where I presented the bastard chieftain with his tapestry. He hung it above his throne as he laughed at my suffering, then drank himself into a merry stupor. When all the hall was quiet and my fellow slaves had been thrashed back to their quarters, I crept out with murder in my heart. Returning to the hall, I took up a long carving knife and limped up to where the chieftain sat, still sotted with drink. With a savage, clumsy strike I thrust the knife through his eye with such force it pinned his head to the throne behind him. He thrashed once and lashed out, by pure instinct alone, with the fell axe he held by his side. It bit deep into my flank, and I perished next to him on the cold stone floor. 

Now the stormfather has remade me, whole in body and resolute in purpose. I shall find the source of this accursed cold and end it in the name of those I loved. 

And then, perhaps, I shall know peace.

The Stormcast Vanguard models always held my attention among the new Games Workshop range. Clad in mystic plate and swaddled in hunted furs, they seem to straddle the line between knight, barbarian, and ranger. I altered the pose on this model and swapped the standard head for a more brooding Adeptus Custodes head from the Warhammer 40,000 line.