Honored Matres
Honored Matres.
Honored Matres
Honored Matres.
Emblem.An Honored Matre.
The "Honored Matres" were a powerful all-female group who emerge from uncharted space to become formidable rivals of the Gesserit Bene some two thousand years after the death of the God-Emperor Leto Atreides II.
During the departure of almost countless people during The Scattering, the Gesserit Bene sent out many exploration and colonization teams from within their own ranks. Nothing was heard of the groups again. However, it was later discovered that some did survive, and indeed thrived in numbers and power. However, the experiences of this group, and their interactions with other groups from The Scattering, triggered fundamental changes in their beliefs, customs and objectives.
In the original Dune series by Frank Herbert, it is suggested that the Honored Matres' heritage is an offshoot of the customs of the Gesserit Bene and Fish Speakers, and indeed, the Matres derive their heritage from both.
"My houris often submit to a form of rape at first only to convert this into a deep and binding mutual dependence." "Dammit! You're..." "Binding, Duncan! Binding."
Honored Matres have sophisticated training in how to compel others to do their bidding; In particular, they have techniques of seduction that would in fact be considered rape anywhere else in the UGC. Leto II specifically mentioned that the Fish Speakers "bind" males to them, pert of their Fish Speaker heritage.
Customs and Ideologies
While some Gesserit Bene ideologies remained a part of the Honored Matre identity, they incorporated outside customs and philosophies that made them very distinct from - and often at odds with - their ancestral origin. Key to these was their general opinion of control. While the Gesserit Bene used subtle and often deceptive methods to retain their powerbase within an existing balance-of-power, the Honored Matres sought to supersede the status-quo and gain absolute control over all other groups.
This aggressive strategy required the enslavement or destruction of all other power brokers, and consequently demanded the group possess powerful control mechanisms. The most effective method used by the Honored Matres to infiltrate and overwhelm other groups was a form of 'sexual enslavement'. During their evolution in uncharted space, the Honored Matres perfected sexual intercourse into a narcotic process.
By using carefully crafted skills, an Honored Matre practitioner learned how to coerce an outsider (typically of the male gender) into total subservience. This action, performed often and to the right individuals, allowed them to conquer many other groups in uncharted space and build a formidable militry and resource base.
The Honored Matres hungered for intimidation and violence, a trait that encompassed their entire culture. Evidence of this was visible in their frequent use of assassination to gain power.
Leadership of the Honored Matres was executed via the absolute control of one member, who typically rose to the top by killing the previous leader and any other colleagues who got in her way. This method was the established right of ascension. Thus the title of leader changed frequently and loyalty between Honored Matres was conditional at best.
Seeking Gesserit Bene skills such as cellular control, which would render the Scourge powerless, the Matres continued on in violence, and destroyed planets and civilizations with their stolen Weapons. The Matres returned to the core of the Imperium, during the leadership of Gesserit Bene Mother Superior Alma Mavis Taraza. They wrought havoc in an attempt to instill fear and gain absolute power over all. After conquering many planets, they made Junction the beach head in their war of conquest.
Though most groups of the Old Empire were conquered or infiltrated (including the Bene Tleilax), the Gesserit Bene mounted strong resistance, thanks in no small part to their immunity to the Honored Matres' enslavement skills and the efforts of Miles Teg and one of the Duncan Idaho gholas.
Merger of the Honored Matres and Gesserit Bene
Using their own resources, the Gesserit Bene succeeded in holding the Honored Matres at bay. However, realizing militry might would not be enough to succeed long term; they embarked on a strategy of infiltration. Thanks to the powers resident within the genetic makeup of their Duncan Idaho ghola (who was largely immune to the sexual talents of the Honored Matres) they captured Murbella, a talented and rapidly emerging member of the Honored Matres.
Over time Murbella was coerced into becoming a Gesserit Bene, although she retained partial loyalty to the Honored Matres until completing the Agony. Upon realizing the change in Murbella, the Gesserit Bene Mother Superior Darwi Odrade gave instruction that she should succeed her as leader of the Gesserit Bene.
During the final confrontation between the leadership of the two groups, Odrade was killed, and Murbella killed Logno, the Great Honored Matre. Murbella ascended to the roles of Mother Superior and Great Honored Matre and was thus the leader of both groups. She proceeded to unite them in an uneasy alliance taking the title of Mother Commander of the newly formed organization.
Practical Politique
The women within the organization still see themselves as either Gesserit Bene or Honored Matre; some have crossd over, being fully both (most coming from the Honored Matre to the Gesserit Bene), but for the most part they see themselves as one or the other.
Relations With The UGC
To say the Honored Matres and the UGC don't get along well would not be strictly speaking true; The Honored Matres wish to rule the universe, but the UGC keeps the Emperor in check, meaning they 'need' the Council... For now.
Relations With The Landsraad Factions:
House ATREIDES: Very poor; The Honored Matres wish to see the Emperor gone and to rule themselves.
Resurrected House HARKONNEN: Not good. The Honored Matres know why House Harkonnen fell and how it was they were resurrected, and want "as little to do with the house of the abomination" as possible.
House Ordo: The Honored Matres have no specific grudge with House Ordos.
House Richese: The Honored Matres have no specific grudge with House Richese.
House Vernius: The Honored Matres have no specific grudge with House Vernius.
Gesserit Bene: The Honored Matres have merged with the Gesserit Bene, but it's always been an uneasy alliance.
Spacing Guild: The Honored Matres have no specific grudge with the Spacing Guild, however, they do wish to see the Navigators out of the equation- Permanently.
Fremen: The Fremen are part of the Imperial Court. That makes them, at best, a cordial but distant relationship.
Tleilax Bene: Nobody really "likes" the Tleilax Bene, and the Honored Matres distance themselves wherever possible- Except to thwart Tleilax Bene's plans.
Combine Honnete Ober Advancer Mercantiles (CHOAM): The Honored Matres have no specific grudge with CHOAM. They also don't have any love for the corporation, either.
Fish Speakers: The Honored Matres derive some of their philosophies from the Fish Speakers, but there's certainly no love now between the two groups.
Ixians: The Honored Matres have no specific grudge with Ixians.
Mentats: The Honored Matres see the Mentats as a threat to their power, and the Mentats are hopelessly paranoid. So there's that.
Suk School: The Suk School's reputation took a nasty hit from the corruption of Dr. YUEH, and the Honored Matres know about it. Still no one "hates" the school, and the trust in their training is "usually" well placed; the breaking of YUEH is still considered an aberration with little if any explanation.
Swordmasters of the Ginaz: The Honored Matres have no specific grudge with The Swordmasters of Ginaz; Indeed, they know of the events leading to the end of House Ginaz, and would happily destroy House Moritani if they could.
Harkonnen Remnant: As little as the Honored Matres like the HARKONNEN, the hate the Remnant even more; Those that refused to accept the war is over find no pity or aid in the Matres.
Dissonance: One can not list Dissonance as a group, since no two Dissonance are the same; Even cells of Dissonance find that homogeny isn't universal. Sometimes they help Dissonance groups, sometimes they murder them, and sometimes both.