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Wolves of Catachan


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#26
Bjorn Firewalker

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Good to see another update, its very good, but I think a different name would be better than the philosophers stone, because I always seem to think of harry potter when I read it

I chose the name "Philosopher's Stone" because it's in common use- predating the 'Harry Potter' books by CENTURIES- able to serve as a catch-all term for any number of mysterious artifacts. (Spoiler: These individuals were responsible for its creation.)

Wolf Scout- Catachan barking toad eggs+ Thousand Sons Marine= Fun! (Wolves of Catachan)
Sisters of Battle+ Fenrisian Beer- Inhibitions- Sanity= Trouble! (Order of the Blazing Heart Rocket Punch Pimp Magnet She-Wolf)

 

Reasons to use the Steel Crusaders ('Codex: Space Marines' supplement): Because you think giving Sternguard Veterans a heavy bolter wtih special issue HEAVY BOLTER ammunition is ALMOST as much fun as shoehorning an Earthshaker cannon into a Land Raider.

 

Reasons to use the Iron-hearted Angels ('Codex: Blood Angels' supplement): Because you think the Librarian Dreadnought needs Furious Charge AND It Will Not Die to beat down a Chaos-worshiping punk and his Defiler, while a Stormraven needs a Vanquisher cannon to beat down this punk's Heldrake.


#27
Nacho Wolf

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Ah, fair enough, I just thought it a little cliche
QUOTE (Steingrimr)
*Strokes big viking beard* Girl? What is girl?


#28
Bjorn Firewalker

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I inserted an additonal scene to Chapter 5.1, and changed details in later chapters to fit it. I'm sorry if this caused some confusion, but this occassionally happens when I write- I'll realize something doesn't quite work when I review my stories, and :D with some scenes, adding or subtracting details while trying to make it work.

Wolf Scout- Catachan barking toad eggs+ Thousand Sons Marine= Fun! (Wolves of Catachan)
Sisters of Battle+ Fenrisian Beer- Inhibitions- Sanity= Trouble! (Order of the Blazing Heart Rocket Punch Pimp Magnet She-Wolf)

 

Reasons to use the Steel Crusaders ('Codex: Space Marines' supplement): Because you think giving Sternguard Veterans a heavy bolter wtih special issue HEAVY BOLTER ammunition is ALMOST as much fun as shoehorning an Earthshaker cannon into a Land Raider.

 

Reasons to use the Iron-hearted Angels ('Codex: Blood Angels' supplement): Because you think the Librarian Dreadnought needs Furious Charge AND It Will Not Die to beat down a Chaos-worshiping punk and his Defiler, while a Stormraven needs a Vanquisher cannon to beat down this punk's Heldrake.


#29
Bjorn Firewalker

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Chapter 6.2: Inside an Enigma
>

Poorly maintained servomotors growled as the "hound" bowed, its nose seeking a scent concealed among the flora-fauna. Blood, sweet and seductive with the promise of fresh meat, led the Wulfen towards its prey.

'Prey!' The beastman lunged; teeth closed upon the target's neck, tore open the throat, and reduced the prey to meat. "Ah-woo!" With a triumphant call, the Wulfen knelt upon the prey's shoulders to still its death throws, and began feeding.

Seth quickened his pace, as did the lascannon and missile launcher amalgams, to see the Wulfen set upon a dying grox. "You fool!" The heavy weapons began fighting the Wulfen for a share of the meat, stopping only when the Magister's fingers sent forth lightning, punishing them all. "Follow on the scent of burning fuel and metal! The prey is there!" The Magister spared a moment to observe what scavengers dared approach the grox's body-- Seth was obsessed with evolution before he joined the Thousand Sons' ranks-- and left.

The Magister burned with heat and humidity, the effort to direct the slaves' degenerate minds, anger and hatred he bore towards his enemies. Seth once mastered the human body and its functions; he was immune to heatstroke and dehydration. Though his armor became an oven under the sun, the Magister couldn't risk manipulating his body chemistry; his last attempt fused the armor to his skin, robbed him of sweat glands, and irrefutably proved his own body was beyond Seth's control.

'Damn this planet-- damn Leman Russ' pups for keeping me here! When the Philosopher's Stone is secured...'

The Wulfen slowed, falling silent at the scent of danger. Seth followed its gaze to see expended "bombnuts" hanging from the trees, and the wrecked aircraft their seeds were expended upon.

'Excellent.' The Magister shouldered his boltgun. "Preysight."

'Prey, prey, prey.'

"Silence!" Seth admonished the slaves. His left hand parted the waist-high grass, clearing his line-of-sight to a space between two trees, wide enough to admit a Space Marine. "Come out, come out, wherever you are."

The Wulfen advanced on all fours to minimize its profile. The scent was familiar and not, though the beastman lacked the sentience to understand why. The heavy weapons followed the Wulfen as scavengers followed predators...

Click! The Wulfen's gaze fell upon the pin hanging from a wire about its wrist. The beastman struggled to identify the pin, and the scent released from where it came. 'Burnt wood? Bird droppings? Volcanic...?' Then a grenade, armed when the tripwire pulled out its pin, detonated; the blast crushed the Wulfen's skull, liquified its brain, and sent burning shrapnel into the lascannon amalgam's flesh.

"Shrieeeek!" The mutant lashed out with fiery light, vaporizing the Wulfen and the ground it lay upon.

The Magister preemptively punished the missile launcher amalgam, preventing it from firing; then his attention turned to the other. "Cease...!" His ears barely caught the warning-- a bolt pistol's bark. Seth dived as the shell pierced a lascannon capacitor; the resulting explosion launched him across the game trail. "Argh!"

Wolf Scout- Catachan barking toad eggs+ Thousand Sons Marine= Fun! (Wolves of Catachan)
Sisters of Battle+ Fenrisian Beer- Inhibitions- Sanity= Trouble! (Order of the Blazing Heart Rocket Punch Pimp Magnet She-Wolf)

 

Reasons to use the Steel Crusaders ('Codex: Space Marines' supplement): Because you think giving Sternguard Veterans a heavy bolter wtih special issue HEAVY BOLTER ammunition is ALMOST as much fun as shoehorning an Earthshaker cannon into a Land Raider.

 

Reasons to use the Iron-hearted Angels ('Codex: Blood Angels' supplement): Because you think the Librarian Dreadnought needs Furious Charge AND It Will Not Die to beat down a Chaos-worshiping punk and his Defiler, while a Stormraven needs a Vanquisher cannon to beat down this punk's Heldrake.


#30
Bjorn Firewalker

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Amon felt a smile; the many-eyed Marine wished to share his joy with his brothers, but he had no mouth to smile with. 'Another Wolfbrother falls before us. I hope the mongrel is alive, so his suffering may continue.'

Belial leaned towards the Magister, as near as the anchoring chains allowed. "Are you happy with the gifts received from Great Tzeentch?" Its smile-- bright and dark, contradicting qualities only a sadist could express-- was manifest, even in the mountain's shadow. The daemon watched electricity arc from Amon's hands, and added, "Control yourself, lest you inflict such pain, I lose focus and surrender the Tombstone to gravity's embrace, crushing us all."

"Do not try my patience; you are not irreplaceable," a chest-mounted loudspeaker issued for the Magister.

The smile refused to fade. "Perhaps-- but how easily can I be replaced?"

Amon felt a near-overwhelming desire to flay the daemon, grind its bones to powder, and boil its blood. "Brother Seth, how goes the hunt?" the many-eyed Marine voxed to distract himself.

"A minor... obstacle... presented itself. There will be... a moment's... delay," the young sorcerer replied.

'Does he have difficulty breathing? Did his vox-caster malfunction? Or is the transmission being jammed?' "Shall I summon additional men-at-arms to your aid?" Amon continued.

"Negative. The mongrel... will not... escape... his fate."

'His pride makes him vulnerable.' The many-eyed Marine recalled how headstrong he was at Seth's age, and felt surprisingly nostalgic. 'Ah, to be young again.' "Very well. Remember to capture him if possible, so he may host a daemon-- something more reliable than Belial."

"Roger." Seth's smile was tangible, even through the vox-cast; the Pavonae thought hosting daemons a fate worse than death.
>

The missile launcher amalgam lay on its back, crying and shrieking. Its leg hurt-- severed, as the mutant realized when its hand touched the still bloody stump. The hand groped about and then fused to the severed leg, replacing this limb. The amalgam rolled over and limped about; the arm-turned-leg was longer than the limb it replaced, giving the mutant an awkward gait.

"Where is the prey?"

At the master's command, the amalgam sought the Wolfbrother's scent, the weapon twitching up-and-down like a hound's nose. 'Prey, prey, prey.'

Seth let the mutant run free-- it served best as a decoy or self-sacrificing minesweeper-- following at a distant but parallel route. 'I underestimated the mongrel; I forgot a beast is most dangerous when cornered and fighting for its life. These mistakes will not be repeated.' He felt a smile. 'Perhaps I should carve the lesson into the mongrel's chest, and make a banner of its skin, to remind me.' Dark designs filled his mind as the sorcerer stalked his prey.

Wolf Scout- Catachan barking toad eggs+ Thousand Sons Marine= Fun! (Wolves of Catachan)
Sisters of Battle+ Fenrisian Beer- Inhibitions- Sanity= Trouble! (Order of the Blazing Heart Rocket Punch Pimp Magnet She-Wolf)

 

Reasons to use the Steel Crusaders ('Codex: Space Marines' supplement): Because you think giving Sternguard Veterans a heavy bolter wtih special issue HEAVY BOLTER ammunition is ALMOST as much fun as shoehorning an Earthshaker cannon into a Land Raider.

 

Reasons to use the Iron-hearted Angels ('Codex: Blood Angels' supplement): Because you think the Librarian Dreadnought needs Furious Charge AND It Will Not Die to beat down a Chaos-worshiping punk and his Defiler, while a Stormraven needs a Vanquisher cannon to beat down this punk's Heldrake.


#31
Bjorn Firewalker

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I'm adding the following scene to Chapter 6.1, to provide exposition. I hope to complete the next chapter by tonight. Wish me luck!

Minutes later, Beowulf regretted awakening. He knew the mission required speed and stealth, contradictory demands met with a technique his instructors described as "Slow is smooth, and smooth is fast." When Henrik suggested the Wolfbrothers ride Charlie velocipedes-- pedal bikes with reinforced frames and balloon-like tires, able to transport one-ton cargos along roads impassible to motor vehicles-- Ice Wraith agreed. Nonetheless, it was humiliating to ride the near-silent Charlie down the game trail.

'I feel like-- look like a clown.' Beowulf's only solace was the fact none could see his reddening cheeks; Donner insisted his brothers don helmets, reducing their vulnerability to flora-fauna able to discharge poison gas.

Henrik was point man; all agreed he possessed Wolf Scout's acute senses and instincts. Nightsbane signaled a halt, removed his helmet, and sniffed. 'Warpspawn.' He indicated the daemon's approximate location, donned his helmet, and continued pedaling; his battle-brothers followed, steering with one hand so the other may grip a sidearm.

'The Thousand Sons will pay-- my sword will brighten their smiles and make them clowns,' Ice Wraith swore.

Wolf Scout- Catachan barking toad eggs+ Thousand Sons Marine= Fun! (Wolves of Catachan)
Sisters of Battle+ Fenrisian Beer- Inhibitions- Sanity= Trouble! (Order of the Blazing Heart Rocket Punch Pimp Magnet She-Wolf)

 

Reasons to use the Steel Crusaders ('Codex: Space Marines' supplement): Because you think giving Sternguard Veterans a heavy bolter wtih special issue HEAVY BOLTER ammunition is ALMOST as much fun as shoehorning an Earthshaker cannon into a Land Raider.

 

Reasons to use the Iron-hearted Angels ('Codex: Blood Angels' supplement): Because you think the Librarian Dreadnought needs Furious Charge AND It Will Not Die to beat down a Chaos-worshiping punk and his Defiler, while a Stormraven needs a Vanquisher cannon to beat down this punk's Heldrake.


#32
Nacho Wolf

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Good update. Oh, and good luck
QUOTE (Steingrimr)
*Strokes big viking beard* Girl? What is girl?


#33
Bjorn Firewalker

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Chapter 6.3: Dreamt of in Your Philosophy
>

'Forgive me, brother; I had no choice.' Bjorn mourned each Wulfen's loss, though this occurred all too often as the Thousand Sons advanced an agenda yet unknown to the Wolfbrothers.

Firewalker zigzagged towards Marshal Hartman's settlement, taking care to make no sounds or no footprints. He sensed the "wrongness" his pursuers radiated-- mutants, touched by the Warp, with Allfather knew what powers they bought with their souls-- and fought the primal, mind-killing fear their psychic taint aroused.

The first warning was a shadow, seen when Bjorn looked downwind again, alert for predators masking their scent. 'What was...?' Grass swayed in a threatening manner-- a Catachan devil's tiger-striped hide, disrupting the background as the beast advanced.

'Hell!' Firewalker searched for-- found a tree able to bear his weight. Attaching a grappling hook to the wire, he swung it over a tree limb, and pulled himself up. He was far from safety-- he knew the devils were strong climbers-- but it may encourage the predator to seek easier, grounded prey.
>

Two hands, grasping the former PDF servicemen's laspistols, rose like eyestalks. 'Threat?' The amalgam looked in different directions, an eyestalk upon a probable hiding place, the other downwind. 'Threat!'

A frag missile launched the Catachan devil off the ground, severing three of the beast's legs; the pained shriek covered a metallic clanged as the magazine fed the launcher a second...

Wham! The devil's mate fell upon the mutant, its stinger skewering the gunner's heart. The amalgam spun about-- the loader's heart still beat-- trying to throw off its assailant. Missiles were blind-fired, felling two trees before the mutant slammed into a third. The devil flew off its prey's back; the stinger broke off, but its glands continued pumping venom into the mutant's bloodstream. With a strangled cry, the amalgam collapsed, loosening its bowels and bladders.

'Useless insect!' Seth found his finger tightening upon the trigger, with a near-painful urge to shoot the dying mutant. 'Patience. As a Thousand Sons Marine and a Pavoni, I control--'

He felt movement-- vibrations sent through the ground, their rhythm too regular to be anything but artificial. 'What...?' Seth turned from the Grey Hunter's probable hiding place; infrared sensors, slaved to a motion detector, outlined the approaching velocipedes. 'No! I will not be denied my vengeance! If only...'

The sorcerer cutoff the line-of-thought, but was too late; Tzeentch granted his wish to kill, and for the power to kill. His body "evolved," an arm fusing to the weapon in his right hand.

"Noooo!" Seth fell on his back, writhing in agony; tentacles burst from his right shoulder, replacing the lost limb, as he blind-fired the bolter. The sorcerer screamed until he no longer could, swallowing his tongue when the jawbones fused together. A vertical mouth appeared on his chest, spittle dripping from ribs-turned-teeth; an otherworldly shriek shattered the silence, calling for hell and the daemons that made it home.
>

Bjorn cautiously, slowly climbed down. The Catachan devils ignored him-- they found the supine Chaos Marine easier prey-- though the Grey Hunter kept his distance.

The writhing tentacles didn't escape Firewalker's sight. 'The Thousand Sons must be punished, imprisoned and executed; but even traitors deserve a cleaner death than that.' Bjorn drew his pistol, preparing to end the sorcerer's pain--

"Shrieeeek!" Dark lightning-- tears in the fabric of reality as he knew it-- reduced both devils to ashes. A hideous-mutated Seth rose to his feet without bending his waist, like he was the axis on which the planet rotated. The ribcage-turned-jaws fluttered like a bird's wings.

"Shriek, hiss, hiss!" The sorcerer meant to say, 'Coward! Stand and face me!' but had no tongue to articulate words. Recognizing his disability, Seth sent forth thunderbolts to issue the challenge.

"Hell!" Bjorn dived and then somersaulted out of the line-of-fire, but the curse arced about and hit him in midair. Biting his lip to silence a scream, Firewalker fired his pistol. Seth dived out of the bolt's path-- with success, surprising Bjorn-- forcing him to lift the curse. The Wolfbrother felt his death approach; holes were burnt into his face and scalp, revealing the bone underneath; sparks shot from the joints as his armor protested against the damage to its servomotors. Fortunately, the Thousand Sons Marine was in similar straits.

"Shriek!" Seth burned from the effort of conducting Warp energy; his body bent backwards, convulsing with further mutations. Weeping blisters formed about his armor; painted ceramite with blue-and-gold pus; became mismatched eyes, ears, mouths, and other orifices. The Chaos sorcerer-turned-Spawn lost his-- its sanity and sentience, even as its own body raged out of control.

"Die already!" Bjorn threw a frag grenade at the sorcerer's vertical mouth-- 'Where are his hearts and lungs?' he wondered as the mouth opened-- but a thunderbolt prematurely detonated the anti-personnel weapon. "Hell!" He raised a hand to shield his face; shrapnel scored his gauntlet as the blast threw the Grey Hunter off his feet.
>

The Wolfbrothers arrived at the clearing to find a creature of nightmares and madness. Dark lightning burnt furrows in the ground as it arced about the still mutating Spawn; grains of sand fused into glass, forming fulgurites.

"Allfather save us," Donner prayed as he drew his weapons. "Fire at will!" Bolt after bolt buried themselves in the Seth-Spawn's body, detonated, stripped Chaos-tainted flesh from bone and ceramite-- pinpricks to the mutant, whose thunderbolts began arcing towards the rescue team. "Frak!" Electricity flowed from ground to bike frame; the shock launched Donner off the seat.

As Manfred pulled Red Eagle to safety, dark lightning arced towards the others; forced to evade, the Wolfbrothers were unable to coordinate an attack, or even concentrate their fire on an advancing Spawn.

"Shriek, hiss, shriek!" The former sorcerer was filled with an overwhelming urge to crush and rend the loyalists, though the Spawn's devolving mind neither knew nor cared why it felt so. Dark lightning coalesced before its ribs-maw, forming a lance to--

Beowulf's hand shot towards the enemy. "World Wolf, take the daemon back to hell!" At his command, a chasm opened in the ground, swallowed the Spawn, and closed; with the crack of crushed bones, the former sorcerer fell silent.

All eyes were on Ice Wraith, who mirrored his battle-brothers' shock at the psychic power he demonstrated, and the price paid for using it-- a furry appendage, resembling a wolf's paw instead of a human hand, the stunted fingers tipped with sharp claws.

Beowulf's voice trembled with uncharacteristic fear. "Russ save me..."

"Return to base," Bjorn interrupted, driving their attention from Ice Wraith's mutation. The Wolfbrothers treating Firewalker's wounds, hid the hand-turned-paw with bandages, and then pedaled away. No celebration was held, no mirth was felt, when they arrived at the settlement; all agreed Beowulf paid too high a price for victory.

Edited by Bjorn Firewalker, 01 August 2010 - 02:58 PM.

Wolf Scout- Catachan barking toad eggs+ Thousand Sons Marine= Fun! (Wolves of Catachan)
Sisters of Battle+ Fenrisian Beer- Inhibitions- Sanity= Trouble! (Order of the Blazing Heart Rocket Punch Pimp Magnet She-Wolf)

 

Reasons to use the Steel Crusaders ('Codex: Space Marines' supplement): Because you think giving Sternguard Veterans a heavy bolter wtih special issue HEAVY BOLTER ammunition is ALMOST as much fun as shoehorning an Earthshaker cannon into a Land Raider.

 

Reasons to use the Iron-hearted Angels ('Codex: Blood Angels' supplement): Because you think the Librarian Dreadnought needs Furious Charge AND It Will Not Die to beat down a Chaos-worshiping punk and his Defiler, while a Stormraven needs a Vanquisher cannon to beat down this punk's Heldrake.


#34
Bjorn Firewalker

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While writing this chapter, I again felt the need for revisions, i.e., to name the Catachan settlements and distinguish them from each other. The Wolfbrothers base-of-operations is at "Parris Settlement" (another reference to Full Metal Jacket, along with the settlement leader's name).

Chapter 7.1
>

The Wolfbrothers and their hosts congregated in the Leviathan's dining facility-- occasionally used as a theater and auditorium, it now linked the four nearest settlements, allowing the loyalists to share data and coordinate efforts. After laboring for hours, using the gun camera footage to render cogitator models, the Marines displayed a hololith of the excavation site.

Two-score eyes studied the model on the theater floor. Earthmovers labored about six blocks, like a child's toys-- a child of impossible stature.

"We need to empty the settlements of every able body, to face the twists in battle." "Even then, they'll outnumber us 10-to-one." "Even unarmed, the traitors have enough to swarm over us, making us easy prey for Chaos Marines." "With excavators and bulldozers big enough to brush aside Titans, they can crush what battle tanks the PDF has, even knock down our mobile fortresses-- none of which have Titan-killers, unlike the Imperial Guard's Leviathans," the Hogulst, Vamtien, Dannag, and Songung Settlements' marshals noted.

"Fortunately, we have but one target to destroy." Bjorn was pale-- his skin grafts had yet to feel sunlight-- as he pointed at the shadow's shadow, which the cogitators resolved into an unholy silhouette. "This warpspawn, designated Delta One-Zero, is all that levitates the Tombstone; if the Thousand Sons sorcerers had such power, they'd demonstrate it in our previous encounters, not serve as targets on a firing range." The Wolfbrothers laughed without mirth to build the colonists' confidence, recalling recent victories over the traitor Marines. "If we drive Delta One-Zero from the material realm, the mountain will return to gravity's embrace, crushing the traitors and burying," Firewalker paused, "whatever those blocks are."

"If the thing's as important as you say, it'll be heavily guarded. I don't envy the poor bastards in the kill team, or those baiting its defenders so a kill team can approach," Marshal Kroj opined.

"Can we wait for someone-- a rogue trader to find the traitors' ship, summon a battlefleet, and let the Navy blow the sorcerers back to hell?" Marshal Leonard suggested.

"Frak, the Munitorum will pickup our Imperial Guard levies, in-- what's the schedule?" Marshal Grom asked.

"Nine days," a savant answered.

"We need not wait that long; the cogboys will come for our tithe of raw biochemicals, in four." Noting the Marines' surprise, Marshal Kubrick added, "Don't believe that grox feces about Catachan having no assets; we cull native plants and animals for chemicals the Adeptus Mechanicus uses in solvents, enameling and case hardening, et cetera."

"The Thousand Sons may activate the Philosopher's Stone before an Imperial battlefleet arrives; if that happens, the ships arrive to will find this planet a tomb, the star it orbits, cold and dead," Beowulf growled.

"Grox feces!" "Surely you exaggerate."

A servitor approached Marshal Hartman, whose eyes widened at the message on the semi-mechanical slave's chest-mounted dataslate. "Brothers, Enginseer Bowcoy reports my astropath suffered a panic attack, wept blood, and fell unconscious. Have your astropaths exhibited similar symptoms?" the Parris leader asked.

The colonial leaders fell silent. Like all psykers, astropaths-- "astronautic-telepaths," the Imperium's most reliable means of trans-galactic communication-- drew power from the Warp. If the astropath...

"Give me a minute." The projector stopped displaying Grom's head; when it returned, the Vamtien leader's face bore naked fear. "My Enginseer confirms my astropath is comatose." The Hogulst, Dannag, and Songung leaders reported the same.

Bjorn met the colonists' eyes-- felt his battle-brothers' eyes upon him, all seeking his leadership in such desperate times. 'Am I strong enough to bear my responsibilities as a Wolfbrothers leader?' His face was an iron mask, unreadable to the colonists, while the Marines sensed-- shared the near-crushing stress from their leader's position. All were helpless to reduce it.

Firewalker took a deep breath, and then pressed a button-- arrows appeared on the map. "The operation will..."

Edited by Bjorn Firewalker, 04 August 2010 - 10:09 PM.

Wolf Scout- Catachan barking toad eggs+ Thousand Sons Marine= Fun! (Wolves of Catachan)
Sisters of Battle+ Fenrisian Beer- Inhibitions- Sanity= Trouble! (Order of the Blazing Heart Rocket Punch Pimp Magnet She-Wolf)

 

Reasons to use the Steel Crusaders ('Codex: Space Marines' supplement): Because you think giving Sternguard Veterans a heavy bolter wtih special issue HEAVY BOLTER ammunition is ALMOST as much fun as shoehorning an Earthshaker cannon into a Land Raider.

 

Reasons to use the Iron-hearted Angels ('Codex: Blood Angels' supplement): Because you think the Librarian Dreadnought needs Furious Charge AND It Will Not Die to beat down a Chaos-worshiping punk and his Defiler, while a Stormraven needs a Vanquisher cannon to beat down this punk's Heldrake.


#35
Nacho Wolf

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Not bad at all, and I like the way you said 'grox feces'
QUOTE (Steingrimr)
*Strokes big viking beard* Girl? What is girl?


#36
Bjorn Firewalker

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I edited Chapter 5.1, to improve it and to explain how Beowulf earned the name "Ice Wraith." It now has a flashback of Beowulf hiding himself under a thin layer of ice, and then ambushing two Thousand Sons Marines when they approached. The original scene reads:

Darkness filled his dreams. It wasn't the absence of light that tormented the sleeper, but the loss of all he held dear in the past, present, and future. His hands opened and closed, seeking his sword and pistol grips-- something to stem a rain of blood and fire, before it.

Silhouettes appeared flourished and then faded in his mind's eye, drawing an instinctive growl. 'Threat, threat, threat.'

'What dares threaten me? Who are my enemies? Who am I? Why am I under threat?'

'I am... they are...'

The dreams broke upon the answer, like waves upon the shore; the impact, mightier than a hammer's blow, shook the dreamer from slumber.

I hope you agree it's an improvement.

Another change is the means with which Belial moved the mountain. It's now done by opening a Warp gate and teleporting the mountain to a position 900 meters above ground.

17 Aug: Minor details changed to give other Wolfbrothers a chance to shine.

Chapter 7.2: Deathly Visions
>

The sun rose, its light touching the Tombstone Mountain's long-buried secret, for the first time in untold millennia.

Amon was filled with overwhelming awe. "Beautiful!"

Seven "Philosopher's Stones" rose before the many-eyed Marine: seven black pillars or pylons, each 1700 meters tall, arranged in a perfect circle. Despite bearing the mountain's weight for eons, none showed cracks, bends, or any other damage. The stones themselves had a "presence" that deadened the senses, seeming to purge this realm, and the one beyond of everything tangible; this prevented Belial from teleporting the mountain's entire mass from the planet's surface, forcing the Thousand Sons to empty the Tizca of her crew, and dig 800 meters to fully uncover the stones.

Amon knelt before the pillars as a pilgrim before a shrine, feeling invigorated and reborn; the daemon glared at the stones with both admiration and revulsion, as he would towards the Imperium's greatest heroes.

"You have the Purifiers, but with what ritual will you purify yourself? The death of your body? The death of your soul, as granted by the Night Gods who created these relics?" Mockery and contempt dripped from the daemon's fangs, deadlier than venom.

Electricity arced, and flames danced as the many-eyed Marine rose to his feet. "You...!" Amon started, feeling his anger die as a stronger, more terrible being announced himself. "Brother Xaltos!"

"Do not let your anger lead to the host's destruction and Belial's freedom," the Magister Majoris admonished. "We must focus our energies on finding a cure, before we can make attempts toward any other goal-- including the destruction of the Wolf King, his sons, and all they hold dear."

"Yes, my brother."

Xaltos approached a pillar. What his left hand became-- two spidery, serrated talons-- caressed the black stone, which ignited his appendages. "Ah!" Xaltos quickly withdrew the now fire-blackened talons. "Fascinating-- the relic seems to purge anything the Aether touched, from the material realm. We must tread carefully if we wish to retain our powers afterwards." He turned to Belial. "With what rituals are the stones controlled?"

The daemon seemed surprised, a rare emotion on its near-unreadable face. "I know not."

The many-eyed Marine prepared to curse Belial. "You dare continue denying us the knowledge we seek?!"

"I couldn't deny you the knowledge you seek, because it was never in my possession. The Night Gods are not my gods; blessed Khorne, Tzeentch, Nurgle, and Slaanesh do not number among them," Belial named four principal powers worshipped as Chaos Gods. "They came to being and then vanished, eons before the Great Four came to being-- to what end, not even my gods know."

"So what do they know of their," the Magister Majoris paused, seeking the right word, "predecessors?"

"The Night Gods are not of Chaos-- not even of the 'Aether,' as you and your father know the immaterial realm. This allowed the Night Gods to elude the Great Four, frustrating all efforts to find them-- to eliminate the competition. Blessed Khorne, Tzeentch, Nurgle, and Slaanesh know them only through what they left behind: tombs and relics haunted by something more deathly than Death, more damned than damnation, with no souls to corrupt and lure to the Great Four's service."

"What nonsense is this?"

Belial smiled again. "It is the truth as I know it. It is your choice whether to accept or reject my claims. You may also wait for the Night Gods' soulless slaves to reawaken, and then see for yourselves."

A fiery ring encircled the daemon. "Belial's usefulness is near its end. Let us replace it the moment this rock no longer threatens the excavation," Amon voxed to the Magister Majoris, so the daemon couldn't eavesdrop.

Xaltos began, "We shall cross..." He fell silent and turned about, his skull-topped staff-- the one weapon his deformed arms could use-- raised.

Amon shouldered his bolter, ready to rain death and destruction... on nothing. "Is something wrong, Brother Xaltos?"

Two detonating grenades answered the question. More explosions followed as burning shrapnel damaged three flamers, changing them-- and those bearing the weapons-- into firebombs. "Shrieeeek!" With flailing limbs, a score of burning men-at-arms ran towards their masters, seeking salvation; the sorcerers cursed their brains melt in their skulls, granting the men-at-arms peace. Other slaves instinctively shot at all possible threats, fighting and killing each other in confusion.

An autocannon shell detonated upon Xaltos' psychic barrier. "Cease this nonsense, immediately!" The heavy weapons amalgam faltered as a heart stopped beating. The Magister Majoris made the slave turn around, the cannon covering...

Boom! Amon saw something-- 'A krak grenade!'-- hit the autocannon magazine, detonate the shells within, and reduce the amalgam to an expanding cloud of scything shrapnel. Panic gripped the surviving slaves so tightly, what was an army 40,000 strong, was now a rioting mob 40,000 weak, beyond even the sorcerers' control.

The many-eyed Marine's rage burned hotter when he saw the attackers were humans, not Space Marines. 'How dare these insects raise arms against us?' The effort to return the slaves to his control, shield himself from enemy attack, and retaliate against his attackers, tested the limits of Amon's powers.

The limits were reached when Henrik and Johann slammed into the sorcerer's blindside, knocking Amon off his feet. Both Wolfbrothers fired their pistols, sending a bolt through the sorcerer's sightless eyes.

Edited by Bjorn Firewalker, 17 August 2010 - 07:21 PM.

Wolf Scout- Catachan barking toad eggs+ Thousand Sons Marine= Fun! (Wolves of Catachan)
Sisters of Battle+ Fenrisian Beer- Inhibitions- Sanity= Trouble! (Order of the Blazing Heart Rocket Punch Pimp Magnet She-Wolf)

 

Reasons to use the Steel Crusaders ('Codex: Space Marines' supplement): Because you think giving Sternguard Veterans a heavy bolter wtih special issue HEAVY BOLTER ammunition is ALMOST as much fun as shoehorning an Earthshaker cannon into a Land Raider.

 

Reasons to use the Iron-hearted Angels ('Codex: Blood Angels' supplement): Because you think the Librarian Dreadnought needs Furious Charge AND It Will Not Die to beat down a Chaos-worshiping punk and his Defiler, while a Stormraven needs a Vanquisher cannon to beat down this punk's Heldrake.


#37
Bjorn Firewalker

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Hawker felt both relieved and disappointed at his son's absence-- a feeling shared by all who volunteered for this "suicide mission." Marshal Hartman said he intended was to spare the jungle fighters the trauma of losing a child; the unspoken "So our children may live to avenge us," was heard by all.

'Lancaster is angry to miss a fight this epic, but he'll live to feel angry.' The colonist fired a burst, his autogun reducing a mutant's leech-like head to pink foam. "For the Emperor and Catachan!" He leapt over the headless mutant's supine form, his bayonet reaching for a heavy bolter amalgam.

"Oomph!" Hawker found himself prostrate on the ground. "What...?" The headless mutant still lived; the colonist tripped when its tentacle caught his ankle. A fanged maw grew from the stump where the mutant's head was-- it became a replacement head. "Go back to hell!" Autogun bullets reached into the mutant's maw, shattered bone and enamel, shredded what organs lay behind it, and killed the mutant. Hawker shifted targets, but the bolter spoke first; the colonist's lung burst like a balloon, though a shell wouldn't detonate when fired at point-blank range.

The bolter muzzle rose like a shark's nose, exhibiting the amalgam's palate as the crawling mutant prepared to feast on its prey.

'No! My body will not feed a thing more monster than man!' A defiant Hawker tried to shoot the amalgam, but his blood-slicked fingers failed to find the autogun trigger. Sunlight blazed upon the amalgam's combat knives-turned-teeth and entrenching tools-turned-mandibles, making the colonist squint-- and miss a krak grenade flying into the mutant's gullet.

Boom! Hawker's eyes widened when a shadow fell over him. 'One of the Wolfbrothers-- what's his name?' He tried to read the loyalist Marine's lips as they mouthed words he couldn't hear. 'Medic?'

An autocannon amalgam issued a challenge as four mutants-- hands fused to pickaxes and other tools-- closed the distance. Sigmund Steelstorm held his frostblade at an angle; the incoming shell ricochet off the toothed sword, buried itself in a mutant's belly, detonated, killed two mutants and wounded a third. The fourth raised a shovel with a human face; the frostblade arced once, bisecting two mutants with a single cut, before Sigmund's plasma pistol detonated the amalgam's unfired shells.

"How's he doing?" Steelstorm asked as Njord examined the colonist's wounds.

Hawker couldn't read Krakenteeth's lips-- he didn't understand the Fenrisian tongue-- but the colonist knew the answer well enough. Bloody fingers painted the long-las slung across his back. "For my son," Hawker mouthed. He smiled when Njord nodded-- an unspoken promise to deliver the heirloom weapon so accurate, the colonist would boast he could shoot through the eye of a needle 2000 meters away-- and breathed his last.

Wolf Scout- Catachan barking toad eggs+ Thousand Sons Marine= Fun! (Wolves of Catachan)
Sisters of Battle+ Fenrisian Beer- Inhibitions- Sanity= Trouble! (Order of the Blazing Heart Rocket Punch Pimp Magnet She-Wolf)

 

Reasons to use the Steel Crusaders ('Codex: Space Marines' supplement): Because you think giving Sternguard Veterans a heavy bolter wtih special issue HEAVY BOLTER ammunition is ALMOST as much fun as shoehorning an Earthshaker cannon into a Land Raider.

 

Reasons to use the Iron-hearted Angels ('Codex: Blood Angels' supplement): Because you think the Librarian Dreadnought needs Furious Charge AND It Will Not Die to beat down a Chaos-worshiping punk and his Defiler, while a Stormraven needs a Vanquisher cannon to beat down this punk's Heldrake.


#38
Nacho Wolf

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Nice, but I think it should be stretched out for a bit more
QUOTE (Steingrimr)
*Strokes big viking beard* Girl? What is girl?


#39
Bjorn Firewalker

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I'm adding a scene to Chapter 3.1, to detail the Catachan colonists' background, and develop their characters.

Nice, but I think it should be stretched out for a bit more

The "Wolfbrothers versus Thousand Sons" battle, will be. The "Catachan colonists versus Thousand Sons," on the other hand, stalled at a Writer's Block- at least until Catachan-born youths begin joining the Chapter. If you have any ideas, I'll be happy to hear them.

Wolf Scout- Catachan barking toad eggs+ Thousand Sons Marine= Fun! (Wolves of Catachan)
Sisters of Battle+ Fenrisian Beer- Inhibitions- Sanity= Trouble! (Order of the Blazing Heart Rocket Punch Pimp Magnet She-Wolf)

 

Reasons to use the Steel Crusaders ('Codex: Space Marines' supplement): Because you think giving Sternguard Veterans a heavy bolter wtih special issue HEAVY BOLTER ammunition is ALMOST as much fun as shoehorning an Earthshaker cannon into a Land Raider.

 

Reasons to use the Iron-hearted Angels ('Codex: Blood Angels' supplement): Because you think the Librarian Dreadnought needs Furious Charge AND It Will Not Die to beat down a Chaos-worshiping punk and his Defiler, while a Stormraven needs a Vanquisher cannon to beat down this punk's Heldrake.


#40
Bjorn Firewalker

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Belial's laughter was audible over the roaring flames, guns, and even explosions. "It seems you will not have the opportunity to-- what is the human term? 'Cross that bridge' when you reach it? It is difficult to cross a burning bridge." Laser beams, bolt and cannon shells, and grenades reached for the daemon as it spoke, only for the Warp energy to displace them far from Belial.

A frag missile reached for Xaltos, who sent a thunderbolt to detonate the warhead in midair-- sparks flew as shrapnel struck the psychic barrier-- and then vaporize the launcher and its bearer. "Did you foresee this-- the insects' attack?" the spidery Marine demanded.

"The Purifiers' presence interferes with my..." Belial's eyes widened. A moment passed before the sorcerer recognized its distress; thus warned, Xaltos spun to meet a charging enemy.

Bjorn's still silent chainsword was but a centimeter from the sorcerer's neck, when Xaltos' shadow became talons to catch and then slam the Wolfbrother against the ground. "Argh!"

"The Wolf King's pup-- mongrel," the Magister Majoris spat. "Death will not spare you from..." The first warning was a jolt; electricity charged the air, more tactile than the daemon's ichor painting the back of his neck. Xaltos turned and was near-blinded when the daemon lost an arm to Beowulf's chainsword; the sorcerer's psychic defenses flared with Warp energy now spilling from the host's wound.

Belial gasped-- drew breath for mocking laughter or a pained shriek, though none would know. Beowulf pistol-whipped the host, making the daemon choke on its own teeth; then he impaled its heart upon his sword, and buried a bolt in Belial's neck.

"Noooo!" Xaltos screamed as a clairvoyant in despair, knowing he was powerless to change what was foreseen. The bolt detonated upon a vertebra, beheading the daemonhost; blood, gore, and bone broke upon the psychic barrier, like waves upon the shore.

Belial smiled. The words "Free at last," were heard before gravity embraced the head-- a human head, no longer deformed or desecrated by the Warp.

The Ice Wraith immediately joined the corpse on the ground. Pain racked him as shadowy talons tore into his chest, flooding his lungs with blood; Beowulf bit his lip to deny his foe the pleasure of hearing him scream.

The Magister Majoris glared at the prostrate Wolfbrothers. "No defiant words? Not even a wolfish howl? How disappointing." His gaze rose towards the mountain's shadow-- dark beyond the mere absence of light, becoming darker as it flowed from a destabilizing Warp gate. "Crushing should bring you no fear. Belial-- the daemon created an Aethereal gate so great, it requires nine minutes and seven-point-five seconds to collapse. Only then will gravity reclaim the Tombstone-- your tombstone-- time enough to hear you beg for death, before making my escape." Sorcery reanimated the psychneuein skull atop the wooden staff, though death diminished none of the menace the creature had in life; mandibles that once butchered humans like cattle, snapped at the loyalists. Dark light blazed from the staff...

"Ah-woo!" Donner's chainsword shrieked as he leapt, but the sorcerer needed but another shadowy talon for self-defense. "Argh!" The sword left Red Eagle's hand, but Xaltos knew the weapon would miss him, and contemptuously ignored Donner.

"Wolfpack, this is Firewalker. India Alpha, I say again, India Alpha!" Bjorn called for immediate action-- a fighting withdrawal. "We have eight minutes before the mountain falls and entombs us!"

The sorcerer glared at Bjorn. "Noble to the last, mongrel?" He cursed Firewalker with dark light, burned off the skin grafts, and scorched the surface of Bjorn's skull. A pained cry escaped Firewalker's lips; Xaltos felt a smile his mutated face was incapable of expressing.

"Where was this nobility when Prospero was scoured? Your hypocrisy..." Xaltos' next breath brought blood instead of words. Surprised, his head turned 180 degrees-- he noticed his second captive was missing, likely freed when the errant chainsword maimed a shadowy talon-- to face whoever stabbed him in the back.

Beowulf's eyes were golden suns, his hatred fueling psychic flames as he drove Red Eagle's weapon sideways. "For Russ and the Emperor." With that, the Ice Wraith tore open Xaltos' three lungs. His torso cut reaching from side to side, his blood springing forth like water from a fountain, the Chaos Marine died before his body touched ground.

The sorcery died with its caster, freeing the others. "Brother Bjorn!" Putting a near-insensate Firewalker's right arm across his shoulders, Donner limped away from the fallen sorcerer.

The Ice Wraith holstered his pistol. "Let me help." He laid Bjorn's left arm across his shoulders. Confident they could defeat what dangers lay before them, Beowulf's head turned... "What in hell...?"

Red Eagle received no warning before an ebony lance burst from his chest. Losing all strength below the waist, he collapsed under his brothers' weight. 'A mammoth?'

Beowulf rolled away from Firewalker, freeing his right hand, but was too shocked to draw a weapon. Xaltos became a Spawn; his ruptured lungs became venom sacs, and his ribs, fangs; the arms mutated again, those at the mouth becoming tentacles or elephantine trunks, and those at the hinge of its jaws, fan-like ears or wings.

"Allfather, give me the strength to save my brothers," the Ice Wraith whispered, raising his deformed hand. "Scour this realm of Chaos-taint!" Focusing the Warp energy still charging the air, Beowulf cast many-colored lightning at the Spawn.

Xaltos-- the monster he became-- fell to its knees. Holes were burned into its flesh, exposing bone at the chest-turned-lips and other areas, but the Spawn survived. "Shrieeeek!" The Spawn seemed to waste away; the mutating flesh became an exoskeleton resistant to Warp-charged lightning. Then the monster lashed out with dark light, icy flames, and things beyond sane description.

"Frak!" The Ice Wraith pushed Bjorn, opening a space between them; the curse vaporized the ground he previously laid on, launching Beowulf into the air. He somersaulted backwards, riding the blast to land on his feet. "Cough!" Beowulf fell to a knee, breathless as the shock reopened his wounds and filled his lungs with blood. Black spots appeared before his eyes-- 'A symptom of asphyxiation? A product of sorcery?' the Ice Wraith wondered.

Beowulf's pistol barked-- without visible effect. "Go," bang! "Back," bang! "To," bang! "Hell!" click! The Ice Wraith threw his spent weapon with what he knew was his last breath, only for the Spawn to bat it aside with contemptuous ease.

The tentacle passed before Xaltos' eyes as it lashed out. This was the moment the martyr waited for; with a barely audible "For Russ and the Emperor," Donner's left hand launched him forwards; his right reaching into the Spawn's maw. The monster choked-- on the frag and krak grenades in Red Eagle's hand, transforming Xaltos into a fireball, a red cloud, and bloody rain.

Wolf Scout- Catachan barking toad eggs+ Thousand Sons Marine= Fun! (Wolves of Catachan)
Sisters of Battle+ Fenrisian Beer- Inhibitions- Sanity= Trouble! (Order of the Blazing Heart Rocket Punch Pimp Magnet She-Wolf)

 

Reasons to use the Steel Crusaders ('Codex: Space Marines' supplement): Because you think giving Sternguard Veterans a heavy bolter wtih special issue HEAVY BOLTER ammunition is ALMOST as much fun as shoehorning an Earthshaker cannon into a Land Raider.

 

Reasons to use the Iron-hearted Angels ('Codex: Blood Angels' supplement): Because you think the Librarian Dreadnought needs Furious Charge AND It Will Not Die to beat down a Chaos-worshiping punk and his Defiler, while a Stormraven needs a Vanquisher cannon to beat down this punk's Heldrake.


#41
Nacho Wolf

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Very nice, but when Beowulf says 'cough', it seemed a bit weird, mayby just say He coughed in pain and surprise as he hit the ground or samething like that
QUOTE (Steingrimr)
*Strokes big viking beard* Girl? What is girl?


#42
Bjorn Firewalker

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Chapter 8.1: Damnation and Redemption
>

The dragon ship navigated the cold, dark waters before him, between towering icebergs deadlier than the daggers they resembled. Despite the clear and present danger, the passenger felt unexpectedly at ease, until he recognized the forbidding realm. 'Fenris-- home.'

"Young Bjorn."

Firewalker turned to see another standing on deck. "Brother-Sergeant Jurgen?" The instructor appeared as the recruit first saw him, the Space Wolves insignia on his left shoulder, unblemished by the Great Enemy's eight-arrow symbol; the bestial and inhuman ferocity the Thousand Sons' sorcery afflicted him with, no longer glazed Jurgen Thunderwolf's eyes.

Bjorn looked to either side, capturing views from a planet he remembered was light-years away. "Am I...?"

"Dead? No, but you'll envy the fallen when you awake." Jurgen made a sound both chuckle and sob. "The Thousand Bastards want to shame Russ and his Sons-- to make the Imperium remember us as monsters more beast than man, no better than a nithing of the Traitor Legions. You have great work to do upon awakening: to redeem our lost brothers before the Emperor-- redeem their honor, so all may stand tall when we meet again in the Allfather's mead hall."

"We will-- or we will die trying."

With those words, Bjorn received the last, sad smile of one bidding a friend "farewell."

"I know you will." Golden light blazed behind Thunderwolf; the ship, the icy waters, and the world were lost to its brilliance; the Brother-Sergeant was rendered a deep shadow. "Until..."
>

Bjorn awoke to find himself in the infirmary, watched over by two individuals. "Marshall Hartman? Brother Beowulf? Were we...?"

"Victorious? In a way, yes," Ice Wraith answered. "The Thousand Sons were defeated, entombed with the Philosopher's Stones they sought; our brothers' sacrifices weren't in vain."

"And our casualties?"

"Brother Donner is with the Allfather." Beowulf's words brought tears to Firewalker's eyes. Losses another military leader would deem insignificant, seemed crippling to a brotherhood that already suffered 99% casualties. "Of our allies..."

"27 were killed; eight others are missing. We hope..." Hartman paused; his eyes held uncharacteristic doubt.

Ice Wraith knew each loss was dear to the colonists; of the Catachan-born, 50% died before they learned to walk, and of the survivors, 50% died before their age reached ten standard years. "Of the fallen, they are battle-brothers in spirit, if not in blood; they will sit beside Russ' sons, in the Allfather's mead hall. Of the lost, it is better to die as humans, than to live as mutants-- to have foul sorcery corrupt their bodies, becoming unrecognizable to sane men and women."

Firewalker caught the bitterness Beowulf tried to hide. "In what way were we not victorious?"

Ice Wraith sighed. "As we fought for ours and our Catachan allies' honor, the Lost Ones fought on a dozen worlds, for as many Traitor warlords-- even against each other, the Wolfbrothers in the Emperor's Children's service, fighting and killing those in the World Eaters' service. The High Lords ordered the Wolfbrothers Chapter dissolved for 'genetic instability'-- they near-declared us 'Excommunicate Traitoris'-- and all loyal forces, including the Space Wolves, to exterminate the Wulfen."

"I guarantee your safety here," the marshal said. "We're siblings, as Sieur Beowulf said, and we Catachan-born don't throw our siblings to the wolves-- pardon the expression."

"Thank you, but no; we won't endanger an ally for our self-preservation. Even were we unaware this would condemn us as nithing, unmanly and without honor, it's against our nature to hide from our enemies," Bjorn declared.

"What now, Brother Bjorn?" Beowulf asked. "Brother Henrik proposed we ask the arriving Techpriests for transport to Fenris, and rejoin our father's Chapter." He watched Firewalker's lips part to give an answer.

Then Hartman's deputy entered the room, interrupting the Space Marine. "Gunny, Enginseer Bowcoy has an urgent message: the Mechanicus inspector found a bogie ship, tentatively identified as a Space Marine strike cruiser, orbiting the planet," Deputy Arlee reported.

"From which Legion-- which Chapter, loyalist or traitor?" Silence answered Bjorn's question; none had that knowledge. "Brother Beowulf, help Brother Henrik prepare a boarding party; I suspect it'll soon be needed."

"Yes, Brother."

Wolf Scout- Catachan barking toad eggs+ Thousand Sons Marine= Fun! (Wolves of Catachan)
Sisters of Battle+ Fenrisian Beer- Inhibitions- Sanity= Trouble! (Order of the Blazing Heart Rocket Punch Pimp Magnet She-Wolf)

 

Reasons to use the Steel Crusaders ('Codex: Space Marines' supplement): Because you think giving Sternguard Veterans a heavy bolter wtih special issue HEAVY BOLTER ammunition is ALMOST as much fun as shoehorning an Earthshaker cannon into a Land Raider.

 

Reasons to use the Iron-hearted Angels ('Codex: Blood Angels' supplement): Because you think the Librarian Dreadnought needs Furious Charge AND It Will Not Die to beat down a Chaos-worshiping punk and his Defiler, while a Stormraven needs a Vanquisher cannon to beat down this punk's Heldrake.


#43
Nacho Wolf

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Ah, good to see you again, you were gone for ages.
This was just as good as the others, looking forward to the next part
QUOTE (Steingrimr)
*Strokes big viking beard* Girl? What is girl?


#44
Bjorn Firewalker

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This was just as good as the others, looking forward to the next part

Thank you. I hope to add more soon, but Writer's Block can be as intractable as a Warp storm. (How an author like Dan Abnett pierces it, I wish I knew. Maybe he has a mental Webway to guide ideas through his mind?)

Wolf Scout- Catachan barking toad eggs+ Thousand Sons Marine= Fun! (Wolves of Catachan)
Sisters of Battle+ Fenrisian Beer- Inhibitions- Sanity= Trouble! (Order of the Blazing Heart Rocket Punch Pimp Magnet She-Wolf)

 

Reasons to use the Steel Crusaders ('Codex: Space Marines' supplement): Because you think giving Sternguard Veterans a heavy bolter wtih special issue HEAVY BOLTER ammunition is ALMOST as much fun as shoehorning an Earthshaker cannon into a Land Raider.

 

Reasons to use the Iron-hearted Angels ('Codex: Blood Angels' supplement): Because you think the Librarian Dreadnought needs Furious Charge AND It Will Not Die to beat down a Chaos-worshiping punk and his Defiler, while a Stormraven needs a Vanquisher cannon to beat down this punk's Heldrake.


#45
Nacho Wolf

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Or he has loyal readers on the internet who offer help when writers block comes on :)
QUOTE (Steingrimr)
*Strokes big viking beard* Girl? What is girl?


#46
Bjorn Firewalker

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Chapter 8.2: Darkest Before the Dawn
>

"Present... arms!" At the Tribune's command, a platoon of Skitarii-- soldiers in the Adeptus Mechanicus' service, given genetic and cybernetic enhancements comparable to a Space Marine's-- held their hellguns perpendicular to the floor, saluting their master.

"Greetings." Firewalker saluted the Techpriest now exiting the Mechanicus shuttle. "I am Brother Bjorn, of Lord Jorin Bloodhowl's Great Company," he named a Space Wolves captain who disappeared centuries ago, during the Horus Heresy; Bjorn hoped to protect his battle-brothers by identifying them as a marooned Space Wolves.

The Techpriest bowed. "I am Magos Halman. On behalf of the Mechanicus, I thank you for the assistance offered." Once the Marines were aboard the shuttle, Halman told them what he knew.

"The strike cruiser has a pyramidal structure in place of the Standard Template command center." The Techpriest used a hololith projector in the palm of his hand, to display the starship, which slowly rotated as he spoke. "We believe the pyramid is a command center, but our sensors are unable to penetrate its armor. Four obelisks are mounted 45, 135, 225, and 315 degrees from the pyramid's center; we believe they form the sensor array. The--"

"Hold," Bjorn pointed at the ship's side, "the shield generators bear insignia. Can you zoom in?" Halman complied, allowing the Marines to study the symbol: an eight-pointed star or iron halo, encircling a multi-colored feather. "I saw it before," Firewalker breathed. "Where...?"

"The War of the Giants," Henrik referred to the attack on Prospero, when Leman Russ fought and defeated Magnus, banishing the Traitor Primarch to the Eye of Terror. "The Thousand Sons' Third Company-- its Captain bore the symbol on his shoulder."

"Thousand Sons-- the Traitor Legion?" Halman's expressions were impossible to read-- as Techpriests rose in rank, they became more machine than man, sacrificing flesh-and-blood organs to the Machine God-- but the Marines caught the scent of his fear.

Firewalker nodded. "We recently defeated a traitor warband-- slavers," he lied to protect the colonists. The Mechanicus would stop at nothing to acquire an artifact like the Philosopher's Stones; as a Blood Claw, Bjorn was ordered to kill unarmed civilians who dared form a human shield between a Techpriest and his archeotech prize.

Halman voxed orders to his crew-- the Marines' network hissed at the encrypted transmissions-- before turning to Firewalker. "When we detected the strike cruiser, we began hailing it at ten-minute intervals; we have yet to receive a reply, but we must assume the traitors are aware of our presence. Brother Bjorn, what actions do you recommend?"

"Are its void shields active? Are its weapons locked onto us?" Firewalker asked as he drew his pistol, confirming the weapon was loaded.

"Void shields: negative. Weapons lock: negative-- for known targeting matrix technology." The Techpriest remembered the Thousand Sons' sorcery granted powers beyond scientific explanation.

"Then get us onto the bridge, or whatever the pyramid is, before the traitors recover their wits."

"Agreed."

Bjorn faced the Tribune. "What's your name?"

"Lieutenant Orion Pax." The Skitarius officer saluted.

"Will you support us as we storm the bridge?" Firewalker continued.

"We stand ready to fight and die before all enemies of the Mechanicus and the Emperor Omnissiah," the Machine God's material incarnation, as the Cult Mechanicus knew His Majesty.

"Allfather willing, we need not test our readiness to die."
>

A plasma cutter formed a golden halo as it cut into the strike cruiser's hull. Near-completion, the Enginseer magnetized his servo-arm, locking the mechanical limb to the armor plate. "Ready," he reported.

Bjorn, weapons in hand, faced to the Tribune. "On three." He watched Orion nod in confirmation. "Three, two, one... go!" The Enginseer heaved the cutout away from the airlock; the Skitarii provided covering fire, flooding the bridge with laser beams; then Firewalker charged into the breach, Johann Serpent-Eater following...

Clang! "Oomph!" The junior Marine bumped into the senior one, who backpedaled, pushing Johann back into the shuttle's airlock. "What in hell...?"

"Seal the airlock! Get us away from here!" Bjorn's alarmed tone confused the boarding party, but the others did as he ordered.

"Why...?" Orion fell silent when Firewalker turned to reveal the front of his armor-- bare ceramite stripped of its colors. As the void filled the space between shuttle and strike cruiser, the Skitarii heard laughter.

"What's so funny, Brother Bjorn?" Manfred asked.

"Brother Henrik's gift to the Thousand Sons-- barking toad eggs-- bore fruit aboard the traitors' ship." Bjorn's laughter infected Nightsbane and Storm Rider.

"When did you exchange gifts with Thousand Sons traitor?" Johann wondered. When Henrik finished explaining, the laughter spread to everyone in the airlock.

"What now? I must admit we are incapable of detecting such elusive targets-- a barking toad egg's protective membrane absorbs auspex beams, rendering most sensors useless-- even if we were, our ship has sufficient coolant to sterilize another," Orion stated.

"Did the strike cruiser raise a containment field to seal the breach?" Firewalker asked.

The Tribune repeated the question to the shuttle pilot. "Negative."

"Then we wait for the corrosive vapor to disperse, reenter the bridge to disable the environmental controls and emergency systems, and then open all the strike cruiser's compartments to the void, letting vacuum sterilize the bridge," Firewalker proposed.

Orion nodded. "The plan is feasible. It will be a pity to leave the Omnissiah's gifts abandoned and despoiled."

Wolf Scout- Catachan barking toad eggs+ Thousand Sons Marine= Fun! (Wolves of Catachan)
Sisters of Battle+ Fenrisian Beer- Inhibitions- Sanity= Trouble! (Order of the Blazing Heart Rocket Punch Pimp Magnet She-Wolf)

 

Reasons to use the Steel Crusaders ('Codex: Space Marines' supplement): Because you think giving Sternguard Veterans a heavy bolter wtih special issue HEAVY BOLTER ammunition is ALMOST as much fun as shoehorning an Earthshaker cannon into a Land Raider.

 

Reasons to use the Iron-hearted Angels ('Codex: Blood Angels' supplement): Because you think the Librarian Dreadnought needs Furious Charge AND It Will Not Die to beat down a Chaos-worshiping punk and his Defiler, while a Stormraven needs a Vanquisher cannon to beat down this punk's Heldrake.


#47
Nacho Wolf

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Haha, the toad eggs are back! I'd forgoten bout that! :angry:
Just one thing though, you didnt realy explain how long after the battle on Catachan this is, had me a bit confused about timeline and stuff
QUOTE (Steingrimr)
*Strokes big viking beard* Girl? What is girl?


#48
Bjorn Firewalker

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Just one thing though, you didnt realy explain how long after the battle on Catachan this is, had me a bit confused about timeline and stuff

Honestly, I didn't specifically set how much time between the Thousand Sons' expedition force's defeat, and Bjorn awakening from the Red Dream. I lack sufficient knowledge of the Imperium's history to do so. Besides, with the Warp altering the rate at which time flies (an example of which is found in Brothers of the Snake), in addition to differences in the rate at which planets rotate and orbit their suns, I doubt such specifics would help much.

Wolf Scout- Catachan barking toad eggs+ Thousand Sons Marine= Fun! (Wolves of Catachan)
Sisters of Battle+ Fenrisian Beer- Inhibitions- Sanity= Trouble! (Order of the Blazing Heart Rocket Punch Pimp Magnet She-Wolf)

 

Reasons to use the Steel Crusaders ('Codex: Space Marines' supplement): Because you think giving Sternguard Veterans a heavy bolter wtih special issue HEAVY BOLTER ammunition is ALMOST as much fun as shoehorning an Earthshaker cannon into a Land Raider.

 

Reasons to use the Iron-hearted Angels ('Codex: Blood Angels' supplement): Because you think the Librarian Dreadnought needs Furious Charge AND It Will Not Die to beat down a Chaos-worshiping punk and his Defiler, while a Stormraven needs a Vanquisher cannon to beat down this punk's Heldrake.


#49
Nacho Wolf

Nacho Wolf

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Fair enough, just a little nitpick. Where are you planning on going with this anyway? Now that you've left Catachan and all
QUOTE (Steingrimr)
*Strokes big viking beard* Girl? What is girl?


#50
Bjorn Firewalker

Bjorn Firewalker

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Where are you planning on going with this anyway? Now that you've left Catachan and all

Beowulf is the only Wolfbrother who'll leave anytime soon- he MUST get a Rune Priest to train him on using his newfound powers, plus an augmetic hand to replace the one that mutated into a wolf's paw.

The others will be on Catachan for a while- the Thousand Sons' strike cruiser is six kilometers long, and the Techpriests calculate at least one standard year is required to "rededicate" the damn thing to the Imperium's service. Bjorn will eventually return to Fenris, seek permission from Leman Russ to rebuild the Wolfbrothers Chapter (he doesn't know Russ has left), and get permission from Bjorn the Fell-Handed.

The sequel will show the newfound "Catachan Wolves" Chapter's painstaking efforts to rebuild: recruiting new Marines from the Catachan colonists, repeatedly implanting and then removing gene-seed from the Marines to build up their stocks, bargaining with the AdMech for vehicles and other materiel, building a fortress-monastery in the gas giant's moon (they orbit the same star as Catachan), serving under the Fell-Handed as the Space Wolves' "14th Great Company," etc...

Wolf Scout- Catachan barking toad eggs+ Thousand Sons Marine= Fun! (Wolves of Catachan)
Sisters of Battle+ Fenrisian Beer- Inhibitions- Sanity= Trouble! (Order of the Blazing Heart Rocket Punch Pimp Magnet She-Wolf)

 

Reasons to use the Steel Crusaders ('Codex: Space Marines' supplement): Because you think giving Sternguard Veterans a heavy bolter wtih special issue HEAVY BOLTER ammunition is ALMOST as much fun as shoehorning an Earthshaker cannon into a Land Raider.

 

Reasons to use the Iron-hearted Angels ('Codex: Blood Angels' supplement): Because you think the Librarian Dreadnought needs Furious Charge AND It Will Not Die to beat down a Chaos-worshiping punk and his Defiler, while a Stormraven needs a Vanquisher cannon to beat down this punk's Heldrake.