In the Imperium, where doctrine often implies that physical mutation belies spiritual corruption, Abhumans are a rare example of mutants being tolerated by humanity. Many of these are true ‘stable’ divergent subspecies of humanity, often the proven results of evolution to harsh environmental conditions, or genetic tampering. Unlike the spontaneous mutations resulting from toxic materials, or warp exposure, these individuals are often spared extermination, usually because they possess desirable physical traits that makes them useful to the Imperium.
This is not to say they are respected or well treated, Abhumans are still considered subhuman, and are not afforded the full rights of non-divergent humans, their populations are tightly controlled and monitored, their civilizations and access to education are often incredibly restricted, and they never hold rank outside their own units when utilized in warfare.
To be an Abhuman in the Imperium is to live a life of being judged and discriminated against. Few humans recognise the difference between mutants and some of the more extreme variations of abhumans, and more often than not ‘sanctioning’ is no protection against Puritan pogroms. An Abhuman will never own a business, be able to fall in love with any being outside their subspecies, or live outside their designated zones, in the military they are barracked far away from other troops, the Imperium often practicing active segregation, and rarely giving abhumans the freedom of leave.
The exception to these rules, are the Navigators of the Navis Nobilite who, via their essentialness to the Imperium, are treated with uttermost respect on a par with the ruling Nobility of the Imperium. Navigators are not discussed in this document as they are limited in number and not common amongst the Agents of the Imperium.
Abhuman Species in the Prosperitas Sector
The Prosperitas sector, distant as it has been from the Imperium for so long, and as hostile as the native population has been when encountered. Has relatively few native subspecies of humanity, most populations showing such levels of deviance have been exterminated with one notable exception. The majority of abhumans currently in the sector are bound to the Prosperitas Crusade, used as cannon fodder for suicide missions where their enhanced brawn is needed.
Ogryns (Homo Sapiens Gigantus)
Perhaps one of the most prevalent abhuman species for their incredible toughness and strength, Ogryns are larger, heavier and bulkier than baseline humans. By and large most Imperial citizens believe Ogryns to have simple intelligence, though in truth this is not the case, most Ogryn populations are kept deliberately ill-educated in order to ensure they remain passive and indoctrinated in their loyalty to the Imperium.
Ogryns first arrived in the Prosperitas sector as Abhuman Auxilia of the Prosperitas Crusade, but through the heroic actions of Warmaster Durovera’s Ogryn bodyguard Khar Draggik of the 2098th Ironarms Auxilia they are one of the few abhumans from the crusade to win the right to settle on a world. These Ogryn settlements, found on the death-world of Brassilia remain fertile recruitment grounds for abhuman auxilia for the Prosperitas Crusade. Though the more normalised gravity on Brassilia means that the ‘Ogro’ as they are called in the local dialect, are smaller than those drawn from the original population worlds, they remain a strong tradition of almost blind loyalty to the Imperium, venerating Khar as a paragon of their kind.
Beastmen (Homo Sapiens Variatus)
An ill-fated species, beastmen as a subspecies teeter on the boundaries of ‘acceptable’ deviance from the human genetic norms. They are a collection of sub-species, often believed to be the result of genetic tampering from the dark age of technology, that seem to represent a fusion of human and animal genetic characteristics. They are often stronger than baseline humans and more hirsute, possessing animalistic characteristics such as muzzle-like facial structures, and exaggerated canines. The majority of beastmen display horns and cloven hooves, however several display characteristics associated with feline and canine beasts as well as regressed primitive ape-like characteristics. Often a tribal people, because of their extreme deviation they are often treated incredibly poorly, even by the standards of the Imperium’s treatment of abhumans.
There are no colonies of these sub-species found within the Prosperitas sector, though there are more deviant examples found in the forces of the Archenemy. There are several Auxila Beastmen serving on the front line of the Crusade, but they are increasingly distrusted by their peers, and often spent in suicide missions by the commanders of war zones they are assigned to. Outside of these dwindling numbers, a few Beastmen are found in the company of Inquisitors who appreciate that the abhumans are incredibly loyal once they consider themselves as owing a life debt to someone.
Raivans (Homo Sapiens Furis)
When the Prosperitas Crusade first encountered the Raivans on the freezing eclipse-shrouded desert world of Shadowglow, scouts initially believed them to be cave-dwelling mutants. When later investigation revealed a deep cultural loyalty to the Emperor, ingrained by the use of Shadowglow as a penal world for those who did not swear loyalty to Horus during the Great Heresy, the Imperium soon realized that it was the Raivans and not the ostensibly human Mining Guilds, who were their allies.
Raivans are a proud people, they consider themselves human despite Imperial classification, and often see their mutation as something of a blessing to fight the Emperor’s Wars. They are stronger and faster than baseline humans, and have incredibly powerful night sight, even if they do not adapt well to well-lit conditions. They are identifiable by their near-white hair, and eyes that are adapted for night vision, often on well-lit worlds, a Raivan can be identified by their hair and tinted goggles alone. Although still abhumans, Raivan’s are prized as commandos and assassins by various institutions of the Imperium, well adapted as a warrior subspecies as they are, and as a result they often receive a better welcome than more deviant abhumans.