Pontifex Guards are troops which often serve as the protectors and enforcers of Apostate Cardinals. Known to be fanatically loyal, these warriors are grim followers of the anti-Imperial ideology of their masters. They are the elites of the Lost and the Damned, and their skill is needed in defending such an important figure in the renegade army. Pontifex Guards not only accompany their guardian, but also help further spread their blasphemous ideology upon defenseless Imperial worlds.
It is unknown how many Pontifex Guards are needed to protect the Cardinal, but it is estimated to be around a few dozen at maximum. To be promoted into the Pontifex Guards, the aspiring mortal must be zealous, extremely loyal to the Cardinal (and possibly also the will of the Dark Gods, depending on how far their Cardinal's fallen), and prepared to endure a set of grueling tests to prove their worth.
Pontifex Guards are armed with the best wargear and armoury that the Lost and the Damned can find, craft or loot. Basic loadout includes a heavy, broad shield, carapace armour and a Close Combat weapon, the most common of which are Power Swords. Pontifex Guards are notifiable with their iconic hood and cape and heavy and pronounced armour. In short, they're the Chaos equivalent of Crusaders in terms of armament and function.