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IL XVI - The Drowned


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#526
simison

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It was a lesson some of his ...brothers hadn't learned. Oh yes, they certainly understood themselves well enough as a strategic resource and their potency as a martial symbol. Yet, few of them truly grasped their utility in misdirection. Off-hand, Morro knew the Jade General and Bahmut had demonstrated a proficiency for it. Pakal never revealed himself before striking the killing blow, ironically ensuring he never wielded the ability. 

 

Then you had the glory-hungry fools who insisted upon their infuriating codes of honor. Mycenor, Niimiika, Darzalas. Always parading around, insisting they were too valuable to waste in such a role. Morro inwardly sneered at the thought. 


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#527
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Outside the mayoral palace was a landing site designed for large craft. Probably for a luxury or a pleasure yacht, but it was the perfect size for an warhawk-pattern stormbird. The Hel's Wing was not Morro's favorite, but it was undeniably one of his more practical transport options. Speed was what he required now. As he stepped into the troop bay, he demanded a final check-in from his field commanders. 

 

To his satisfaction, they were meeting his expectations. It was important all city resistance was negated quickly to allow the Drowned to prepare the city for Tarth's incoming counter-attack. If all timetables were met, quite the surprise would await the rebel forces. 


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#528
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The carrier bay ramp closed, heralding their path into the skies. Morro calculated the incoming counter-push would take fifteen hours, which meant he would have to place himself on standby so as to leave the illusion that he may or may not be in Dukoh. Standby, however, did not mean idle. 

 

The Hel's Wing swept over the city, taking care to fly by the few remaining combat zones. Each time, they flew low enough to lay down a barrage or two against remaining rebel forces before moving onto the next one. Morror counted six interventions before they reached past the city limits. The carrier bay opened again as Morro stepped towards it. The hurtling winds did nothing to deprive him of balance as he glanced over the tactical feed being fed by the stormbird's auspex. No humans in range. 

 

With confirmation, Morro walked off the ramp. Five hundred meters flew by before the Primarch landed upon the planet, creating a small crater. The Hel's Wing turned about and flew back to the city. 


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#529
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If K'awil is an unholy meld of Night Haunter and Alpharius, then it feels like Morro is a combination of Perturabo and Alpharius.


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#530
Nomus Sardauk

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With Konrad's penchant for cruelty thrown in, ya'know, for spice.
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Formerly SanguiniusReborn, proud Creator of the Scarlet Sentinels, my 18th Century British Redcoat Chapter and the Steel Legion, my Cyberpunk-inspired Lost Legion!

#531
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Morro walked onward without issue. Two kilometers to the West was his next destination. Although he traveled alone, he feared nothing. The only rebel forces this far from Dukoh would have been broken remnants allowed to run to spread the tale of defeat. In fact, Morro hoped he would cross across a few shattered units. Although he had been forced to sacrifice air travel for the next phase of the plan, an hour of downtime was unavoidable. Spilling blood would be a quick way to resolve that particular boredom. 


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#532
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He wondered when was the last time any of his brothers completed a lone foot march. He doubted Alexandros, that infuriating Shield-Lord of the Halcyon Wardens could stomach the idea of traveling anywhere without a few dozen followers fawning over him. Niklaas, perhaps, if the situation demanded it. The Lord of the Fire Keepers, was a practical man, willing to make the hard choices without the veneer of a false idealism. In no reality could Morro imagine Yucahu forcing himself to travel via feet. The Fourth Legion's Star-Born seemed allergic to dirt. 


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#533
bluntblade

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I feel like "of the Halcyon Wardens" is one descriptive detail too many.

Side note, we should name the master of the Demersal Guard.

#534
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I feel like "of the Halcyon Wardens" is one descriptive detail too many.

Side note, we should name the master of the Demersal Guard.

 

 

Except, I'm trying to keep it base enough that anybody can read the story, since this explicitly will go into the red book. So, I'm aiming for an audience not familiar with BotL.


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#535
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A snap broke Morro's reverie. He paused as he focused his hearing. Eighty meters off his left were nine individuals, two of which were dragging a tenth. A small grove of trees obscured the view between the Primarch and the group. Their gait dragged and shambled in his direction. Morro stared with merciless sea-grey eyes before he moved towards the group. Morro may not have possessed the bulk some of his brothers did, but any watchers would have been baffled as the giant demigod of war crossed the field without noise. He could hear more now. 


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#536
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For the master of the Demersal Guard, I propose Tuhanal Ironbone.



#537
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I approve.


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#538
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The Lovecraft Wiki and The World of Ice and Fire are the perfect two-stop resource for XVIth Legion names.



#539
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Good to know.


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#540
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He could hear the stomp of heavy boots against the grass. The metallic jingle of loose equipment. The low moans of the wounded. Two members were whispering to each other, but Morro could hear them clearly. They complained about Tarth, the war. Most importantly, they regretted following Tarth into rebellion.

 

Perfect, Morro thought as he reached for his blades. 


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#541
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He paused. A whim dictated he had not used only his fists in some time. He obeyed as he neglected his blades, clenching his hands into fists. He waited until the group was no more than two strides from his location. 

 

The lead soldier never saw or heard him. Morro doubted the mortal realized he'd been decapitated as his severed head flew through the air. He was already moving. In the second of reaction time afforded to them, the soldiers were barely aware something was wrong. A Drowned squad, even during a nasty withdrawal, would have maintained combat intervals and kept watch for new threats. These poor fools bunched themselves and half of them stared at the ground as they walked. 

 

All the easier, Morro thought to himself as he raced toward a trio. 


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#542
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Their minds, only now registering something was awry, reacted sluggishly. A kick caved the chest of one rebel, while a lashing fist sent another's broken body flying. Morro headbutted the third, rewarded with a satisfiying crack as the man's skull splintered beneath the force. 

 

The remaining rebels finally understood they were being attacked. The hapless fools raised rifles and screamed at each other as they tried to identify the threat. It took another precious moment for them to realize they faced a Primarch. By that point, Morro slain two more of their comrades. 

 

Then, with realization descending, did the fear hammered into them. Of the remaining four, only two did not break. One fumbled with his rifle. His hands shook so hard, Morro was surprised the man could aim it in his general direction. The other couldn't run. Shrapnel lacerated throughout the man's torso, leaving him unconscious. The two soldiers carrying their wounded companion unceremoniously dropped him as they sprinted away. 


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#543
Beren

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Intro to a Drowned story I'm writing.

As a Legion, we pride ourselves as masters of the abyss. We claim that we are the equal of any of its predators, and that we are ones with the depths.

It is, or was, a lie. Just as much a lie as the hundreds our brother Legions cling too. Unlike our brother Legions, we do not use our lie as a shield to hide behind. We strive to make it reality. As this great war of conquest continues we reshape ourselves so that we may truly claim the depths. Each year brings us closer.

Yet there is a lie beneath a lie. Perhaps the biggest lie of all. There is a far greater ocean than the ones we claim dominion over. An ocean filled with a thousandfold more predators a thousandfold more lethal in a thousandfold more ways. Every day a million mariners plunge into the depths, ignorant even in their dread of the waters in which they sail and the beasts that call it home.

We will claim these oceans too. We do not make petty boasts. We do not make empty oaths. We state our intentions, then we fulfill them. We will reshape ourselves until we are the depths made manifest.

When we walk on dry soil, we shall bring the abyss with us.

Vox Logs of Apothecary Korryn Bloodtwister, XVI Legion

Edited by Beren, 19 August 2019 - 10:19 PM.

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#544
simison

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Interesting.


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#545
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For the one who possessed the courage to defy the Impure Prince, Morro showed mercy. With a single finger, Morro slammed it through the man's chest and heart. Before the man's body fell to the forest floor, Morro chased after the cowards, his boots crushing the unconscious soldier to death. The two soldiers reached a total of eight paces before Morro was upon them. Two giant fingers wrapped around their necks before Morro slowly lifted them off of the ground. They screamed and begged for their miserable lives, but Morro tuned them out. Instead, he, ever so slowly, squeezed. 

 

First, they couldn't breath, clawing at his digits as their bodies thrashed about. Then their windpipes collapsed under the pressure. With an audible snap, animal panic seized them even though death was now inescapable. 

 

Morro continued to squeeze.

 

Finally, bones crunched beneath Morro's grip. Their frantic flailing ceased. 


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#546
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Morro released the corpses to flop upon the earth. Silence returned to the small forest as he basked in the kills for a moment. Then he turned and resumed his journey. 


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#547
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He studied the blood covering his index finger. The red contrasted nicely with the sea-green of his armor. He wondered how his bout of unarmed combat would have compared with the Jade General's martial arts. No doubt the latter would have done it with more finesse and aplomb than Morro's own demonstration due to simple experience. The Jade General was the sole Primarch who spent as much time wielding his fists and feet as he did with bladed weapons. Morro decided it would be a worthy investment if he could gain a few holo-recordings of the Jade General in battle for his own personal study. 

 

He checked his tracker. Another three kilometers to the next point. With nine kills, he considered sprinting the rest of the way. At top speed, he could be there in a few minutes. 

 

Hesitation held him at his current pace. At top speed, he ran the small risk of missing the presence of the enemy. Small yet significant. Significant enough to cause him to abandon the idea. He would not the risk of anything threatening his plans. 


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#548
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Twenty minutes passed as he walked. He wished he could pass the time with campaign updates, but any such information bursts could alert Tarth's intelligence network. It was not that he felt uncomfortable being solitary. His early life had been spent away from humanity with darker...creatures treating him as prey. On this pathetic world removed from such mega predators, this lonely walk was quite pleasant. No, he wanted to know if his marines were failing his expectations. 


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