Bral Reiko knew the siege would favor the Heralds of Light. The Iron Warriors had been unprepared to deal with Astartes, and they had not brought heavy weapons along. Still, when his scouts told him there was an abandoned tunnel into the Hive, he knew the Iron Warriors would find it too. So he lead a group of his finest warriors, and met them head on, his Heralds crashing into the steel armored traitors. He watched as a traitor with a large powerclaw decapitated Brother Husta, and with a shout to his Emperor, he charged. The traitor swung his power claw again, but Bral Reiko blocked it with a deft motion with his blade, before lashing out again, trying to force the traitor back.
Ferrous was surprised that his strike was blocked, and even more surprised when the Astartes began to drive towards him, forcing him onto the defensive. The cramped tunnel meant that he couldn't bring his servo-arm to bear completely, and he found the bulk to be a hindrance. Still, he maintained his composure and met each of the Captain's strikes, before changing the pace and going on the offense. He twisted the claw down, catching the blade of his opponent, and pulling his forward. As the Astartes tried to recover, Ferrous brought his combi-melta to bear, and squeezed off a shot, watching with satisfaction as the stream of superheated air struck the Loyalist dog.
Pulled forward by the catching of his sword, Bral Reiko was off balance when the shot came. He saw the weapon being brought to bear, and barely had time to bring his storm shield up, absorbing most of the blast. Still, even the strength of the shield was not enough to completely stop the blast, and his felt the armor of his thigh being boiled and then melting completely, searing into his skin. The blast stopped before his entire leg was gone however, and while wounded, Bral Reiko could already feel his body adapting. The face of his shield completely burnt, and the metal on the edges was glowing white hot. Bral Reiko used it, smashing the superheated metal into his opponent's face.
Ferrous watched with glee as the storm shield deflected the superheated stream downwards, where it boiled away the armor of his leg and let the scorching smell of burnt flesh waft into his nostrils. Still, the loyalist was coming for him again, and as Ferrous moved to block a blow from the blade, he was driven backwards when the rim of the shield smashed into his temple. The metal was so hot, it boiled his own armor away, before driving into the flesh of his skull. There was an acrid hissing sound, and Ferrous screamed as his left ear was burned away. A last second jerk sideways dislodged the shield, before it could do anymore damage. Saved for now, Ferrous was off balance when the second strike came, slicing upwards beneath his claw and into his armpit. The power field ripped through his armor, and Ferrous felt the burning pain as it entered his chest. Slapping his claw downwards, he batted the sword aside, ripping it out of his now bloodied torso.
Bral Reiko watched with satisfaction as the shield hammered home, and while his opponent was off guard, he swung his blade up, slicing cleanly into his torso. The Iron Warrior deflected it before it could become a killing blow however, suffering a dangerous wound, but not death. Pulling back, Reiko drove forward again, swinging his blade down in a curving arc, aiming to decapitate his opponent. He was left vulnerable however, when his sword caught in the ceiling of the tunnel, the low height being to his detriment. Realizing his position, he swung his shield in front of him, while yanking down hard on his blade. The Iron Warrior was quicker however, grasping the rim of his shield with his servo arm and ripping it away before lashing out with his claw. Bral Reiko felt the heat of the claw as it tore into his wounded leg. It severed the bone cleanly, and if not for a reflexive jerk from Reiko, would have cut it away completely. Sorely wounded now, and realizing he couldn't put pressure on his leg until it could mend a bit, Reiko did the only thing he could.
Ferrous felt the claw penetrate the unprotected thigh of the Captain, only slightly disappointed when the loyalist pulled back. He was caught off guard however, when the Astartes dove at him, abandoning his stuck blade in the ceiling. Caught completely off guard, Ferrous felt his own servo arm punch through the armor of his lower back as he was crushed down onto it by the weight of the loyalist. He felt it tear the muscles in his back, stopping short of his vital organs by mere inches. Wrestling with his opponent, he was unable to bring his claw to bear, and unable to stop the loyalist as he hammered his wrecked shield down onto his face, smashing it into the unguarded side of his head. His vision went black for a moment, and he felt the ice cold sting of a combat blade, driving into his side; the same place the relic blade had already done its grim business.
Bral Reiko heard the traitor give a shout of pain, and with a quick motion he slid his blade into the unarmored section of his opponent's chest, driving it towards the heart and lungs. He felt a surge of satisfaction as another traitor fell, a surge cut short when he felt the Iron Warrior roll over, towards the blade, trapping his only free hand between the rockcrete and his body.
With a shout to his Dark Gods, Ferrous hurled himself sideways, impaling himself deeper on the blade, and trapping his opponent. This was a worthy adversary, but Ferrous would not allow himself to be bested here. He felt the burn as the blade penetrated one of his hearts, and barely had the focus to remain conscious and rip his power claw upwards. Catching the codpiece of the loyalist, Ferrous ripped the energy enhanced claw upwards, tearing his foe completely in half. With a curse, he felt the grip on the blade stuck in his chest weaken. He stood on shaky knees, ripping his servo arm out of his back and using it to grab the ceiling and steady himself.
Bral Reiko felt the terrible pain that started in his groin, and knew he was finished. Intent on his foe however, Reiko locked his hand down in an iron grip on his knife, deciding that if he went, the traitor would go with him. He died thinking he had ended a great enemy of the Emperor, though he would never know the truth.
Ferrous Ironclaw looked about the tunnel, seeing the bodies of a dozen or more Iron Warriors, and nearly twice that of Heralds of Light. Only three of his veterans remained, but they had done their work well. The enemy force's leadership had been slain, along with two dozen of their finest. This world would fall.
"Iron Within!" He tried to shout, though the words came out as little more than a whisper.
"Iron Without!" His survivors responded, in the same quiet manner as he.
Knowing he couldn't do anything more today, Ferrous and his warriors limped out of the tunnel and back to their lines, where Ferrous ordered another block of troops to assault the undefended tunnel. Victory for Perturabo. Victory for Chaos, were his last thoughts, before falling unconscious in his command center. He woke moments later however, as his Astartes blessed constitution repaired what it could, enabling him to watch the final battle, as his Iron Warriors put another world to the sword.
Edited by Shinzaren, 18 November 2010 - 06:55 PM.