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However, Chaos has not been idle during this time. Planet after planet succumbed to their corruption, and even the mere proximity of the Black Throne in tow behind a Chaos fleet could cause it's whisperings to drive an entire planet mad. The Traitor Legions swelled in number as the insanity spread.
This was not without it's drawbacks however. Chaos by it's very nature is volatile, and the wars between the various factions of the four gods were constant shortly after the fall of the uniting influence of Horus. Mars became almost neutral, so often was it's crater-pockmarked surface fought over, and only on rare occasions would multiple devotees of the various gods unite under the banner of Horus and crusade to further bring the madness to the galaxy.
The Primarchs of the Traitor Marines led the Chaos Empire in Horus's stead, and were responsible for the foundation of the Blackguard chapter of the most daemon-warped and powerful marines they could muster, in response to the intermittent assaults by the still-hidden Grey Knights.
Meanwhile, the Fallen Imperium roams the Webway gates, their techpriests operating crude copies of the Golden Throne's webway portal in order to rip unstable openings in the Webway to launch their assaults. Many times the portal has failed, sealing shut in the midst of the assault force and destroying many ships, or closing behind them and before they can make good their escape, condemning them to the unkind fate offered by the Chaos fleet.
Further threats to the weakened Imperium are offered by the Dark Eldar who also roam the webway, resulting in violent and sadistic bloodbaths when they manage to catch a colony ship off-guard. Even the Necrons have been spotted amongst the glimmering paths, along with daemons of Chaos and of course, the Eldar themselves.