NOTE TO ALL READERS: THIS FLUFF WAS CONCEPTUALIZED AND PARTIALLY WRITTEN AT LEAST 7 YEARS BEFORE THE MOVIE 300 CAME OUT.
Leonidas is the model with the Heavy Flamer and the Hammer. The ORIGINAL Leonidas model was made by Joe for a guy called King Douche Greg who ran our LARP and played Salamanders. He sold his army to "Big" Matt T. and Matt used most of it to expand his Chaos army. I bought the Leonidas model from Matt T. and did a slight repaint, hitting the rims and knees with white. He originally had a pistol, and I added a shield and used him as a Comapny Champion.
When the latest Space Marine Codex came out, Vulkan He'Stan was a must-have character. Arguments on the internet say that the Space Marine Codex is only competitive with him, and agree or not he is a VERY useful golf club to have in your bag. I decided that Leonidas would be the perfect stand-in. So I stripped the original Leonidas Model. I replaced the shoulder and lower part of the right arm. I added a new left arm, and modified a Dreadnought Heavy Flamer with a shaved meltabomb to be Leonidas' Heavy Flamer. I replaced the head with the masked head from the Space Marine Captain box. The backpack, torso, and legs are the originals. I added the Cross from the Terminator box set to the left knee.
The company champion with the sword upraised is the Emperor's Champion model. The Flame was added with putty. I also added a Fantasy shield.
The company champion that is pointing with the sword uses the helmet of the Ultramarine character Chronus, with the Mk 9 sergeant armor. The sword is from the Space Marine Captain box, and the shield is another fantasy shield.
All three backpacks are Xavier Salamander Mantles.
Leonidas' original paint job was a Salamanders scheme, but darker as King Douche Greg used Dark Angels green instead of Snot Green. I improved this paint job with the white rims and knees. To fit it into the Azure Flames, I made up the story in the Background section below.
I repainted the new Leonidas in a similar scheme. I added the Ivy detailing and lettering by hand. This is the scheme shown above, the "original" colors of the "Sons of the Salamander." I wrote the Vision of Atrus story specifically to include the mini made by Joe in my army, and explain why he was painted in different colors.
Unlike most youths who voluntarily submit applications to the Azure Flames (then the Sons of the Salamander) as a tithe from a grateful world, Leonidas of house Atraps joined the chapter by crashing the tests.
Leonidas' parents were wealthy aristocrats on a world called Orpheus. When the Sons of the Salamander prevented Orks from entering orbit, the chapter requested that Orpheus allow any boys of age apply to the rigorous physical and mental tests to join. His parents forbade him from applying, so Leonidas stole his father's private shuttle and crashed it into the testing facilities. The crash was probably due to the fact that Leonidas had never flown before. Luckily there was warning and few were hurt. Sons of the Salamander Apothecaries were the first on the scene, finding the youth concussed and unconscious, surrounded by smashed luxury liquor bottles and ruined imported Aquarian caviar.
Upon regaining consciousness, Leonidas demanded he be allowed to take the test for admittance. Despite recovering from a concussion he excelled at the tasks set before him. Over the protestations of his influential family and the planetary governor, Leonidas was admitted to the Sons of the Salamander.
Leonidas' career was blood spattered and glorious. He always seemed to be at the forefront of fighting, even as bolter support in the 9th company Devastators. His combat prowess eventually led him to be named Company Champion of the 3rd Company. Later, when the Sons of the Salamander command structure was killed when the Battle Barge His Hammer was destroyed, he was inducted to the 1st company .
Leonidas was the loudest voice of dissent against the transition from Sons of the Salamander to the Azure Flames. While he shared in the vision and was convinced of its authenticity, he felt that changing the chapter would be seen as heresy. During the conference of Nocturne where Atrus and Salamanders Chapter Master Tu'Shan argued the terms of the chapter's change, Leonidas pushed open the doors and barged in. His musings on compromise led to the composition of the Concord of Leonidas, a binding agreement that limited the independence of the newly named Azure Flames and closely tied them to their parent chapter, the Salamanders. Part of this agreement (under Leonidas' insistence) would be that the company champions of the Azure Flames wear the colors of the Sons of the Salamander, to remember the Chapter's beginnings.
Leonidas served in the 1st company wherever fighting was hottest. After Atrus' interment in the sarcophagus of a Dreadnought, he personally formed Atrus' Techmarine Bodyguard from the four most dedicated Techmarines in the chapter. He was a constant source of irritation to Perseus (then Captain of the 1st company) due to his willfullness and stubbornness. Leonidas was the first Space Marine on the scene of Atrus' death, and was the first to find the statue that the Eldar had left, depicting Atrus as he was before his interment.
Atrus' death made Perseus Chapter Master, and left a power vacuum in the 1st company. To prevent Leonidas from continuing his insubordinate attitude, Perseus made him Captain of the 1st company. Now Leonidas' willful spirit is overpowered by his dizzying array of responsibilities. After learning from Perseus the secret that Antonius was the gene-son of Atrus, Leonidas made Perseus swear that Antonius, not Leonidas would replace Perseus should he ever fall. Leonidas is currently assembling a corps of elite bodyguards for Perseus, though Perseus finds this unneccesary as he is usually in the company of the 3rd Terminator squad in battle.
Leonidas personally returned to Nocturne following this and re-negotiated his namesake agreement. Several provisions were suspended permanently.
Leonidas wields a custom made hammer that is much lighter and quicker than a Thunder Hammer, yet still contains powerful motion enhancers that make his blows truly powerful. He also wields a huge Heavy Flamer one-handed as an example of what Space Marines should be able to do.
The Concord of Leonidas
-That the Chapter known as The Sons of the Salamander requires restructuring following the loss of their command structure, during the loss of the Battle Barge His Hammer, at the battle of Taranga VII.
-That, although independent from founding chapters, successor chapters should maintain nominal ties with their parent chapter to prevent heresy or mutation.
-That major changes to a chapters’ practices, though rare, are not deviant, so long as they remain loyal to the Emperor.
The Chapter known as The Sons of the Salamander shall be known as The Azure Flames, and shall be acknowledged as free of heresy by their founding chapter, The Salamanders, according to the agreement below.
1. The Azure Flames recognize and continue to follow the Promethean Cult as they have done so in the past. All Azure Flames Chaplains must preach according to the Promethean Cult, save that they are allowed to include Atrus’ vision as part of their teachings.
2. The Azure Flames will change their livery to a dark blue scheme, save the Champion of each company, who shall remain in the livery of The Sons of the Salamander, and Chaplains, who shall retain their black armour, and Apothecaries who shall retain their white armour.
3. A representative of The Azure Flames shall be sent to Nocturne in order to participate in the yearly Salamander hunt. All spoils are the property of the contestant.
4. Apothecaries of the Salamanders shall have full access to the Azure Flames Gene Seed repository at any time, should they so choose. Salamander Apothecaries are allowed one complete Azure Flames gene seed sample per 1,000 years to ensure genetic purity. (This Provision suspended 964.82 M41)
5. Librarians of the Salamanders shall have full access to the Azure Flames Librarium at any time, should they so choose. Salamander Librarians are allowed as many mental scans of any Azure Flames Space Marine to satisfy that the chapter is free of heresy. All scans are to have an Azure Flames Librarian and no other guards, for security purposes. (This Provision suspended 964.82 M41)
6. The Salamanders shall maintain a garrison of no less than ten Space Marines on the homeworld of The Azure Flames, once they choose a world to call their own. (This Provision suspended 964.82 M41)
7. Any Azure Flames fleet must report their co-ordinates to an Imperial outpost upon entry of an Imperial star system, with instructions that these co-ordinates are to be sent to Nocturne, and the Battle Barge His Anvil, or the Fortress-Monastery of the Azure Flames once it is founded. (This Provision suspended 964.82 M41)
Agreed this day, 814.76 M41
Tu’Shan, Chapter Master of The Salamanders
Chief Librarian Atrus, Chapter Master of the Azure Flames
Leonidas, Champion of the first company of the Azure Flames