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Enemies Beyond (2016), p20 — Nurgle - the Plague Father

It is the essential nature of the Ruinous Power known as Nurgle to bring down all by decay, and to cause rampant and chaotic regrowth to sprout from the ruins. Countless times throughout the history of the Askellon Sector, the influence of Nurgle has been spread in a very literal sense, as plagues born not simply of microbial life, but of strains tainted by the fell touch of the Warp, have spread like wildfire throughout a population and brought about the end of millions. Those afflicted by the "blessings" of Grandfather Nurgle might escape death if they demonstrate their willingness to embrace all that the Plague God stands for, welcoming their sickened flesh and allowing their bodies to become ambulatory hives of Warp-borne corruption. Such was the case when one of the orbital necropoli of Ossuar fell to Warp contagion; the dead of millennia rose from the void-tombs and demanded adoration from the horrified mourners until an Ordo Malleus Inquisitor and her warband gave their lives to cast the entire structure burning through the shrine world's atmosphere. Some of these plagues have proved so destructive that cities have been transformed into crumbling ruins jutting up into sickly green air from swamps of living corruption, requiring the final fate of the cleansing fires of Exterminatus.

In the Askellon Sector, Inquisitors have long measured the inexorable ebb and flow of Nurgle's power. Observations made over many centuries liken the waxing and waning of the power of the Pandaemonium to the cycle of infection, decay, and rebirth for which the Plague God is so well known. As the storms rise, so the taint of the Warp, whether it takes the form of a spiritual or physical malaise, takes root, slowly spreading throughout a population before exploding in an epidemic. All that remains is ruin and corruption, and a period of deceptive calm sets in as unseen life stirs below. Inevitably, disease erupts from the ruins, beginning anew the cycle of life and death.

Those who dedicate themselves to the Plague God seek to sow the seeds of corruption - or, as they see it, bestow the blessings of their beneficent lord - upon their fellow man. Though they court the most hideous forms of decay, they do not necessarily bear the outward signs of their taint; some exist in plain sight, seemingly pure in every way yet seething inside with the blessings of their Grandfather. Others are so hideous in form and appearance that they dare not show their faces at all, lurking in the shadows and living in the cracks until such time as the call to rise up and spread their contagion comes. On each occasion of death and rebirth, the power of Nurgle increases an iota more than it decreases, so that incrementally, throughout the ages, the Plague God's power grows, all but unseen except by the servants of the Ordo Malleus and by the Plague God's own hidden worshippers.