just some quick and dirty fiction from me as I flesh out some of my Chapter's heroes.
This is me focusing on what drives some humans to join the Space Marines.
Hope you enjoy!
The boy entered the longhouse just before twilight. He could hear the low murmur of men conferring and swapping tales of bravery. Four imposing warriors sat towards the end of the longhouse, taking turns inhaling the intoxicating fumes of the local nightgrass. The boy made straight towards them, his pale skin taking on a reddish hue from the fire pit’s embers. One of the warriors was taller and even more solidly built than the others, and he bore the ritual scars that marked him out as a great war captain of his people. As the boy approached the leader bowed his head slightly and spat on the floor, in mockery of a greeting.
“What does the mighty K’inich Bloodeye wish of us?”
The men laughed. The boy’s face tightened in anger. His left eye had wept blood since birth. This had singled him out amongst his superstitious people as a cursed one, someone to be tolerated but never accepted. His mother had been the only one to welcome his arrival, to nurture and raise him. Until sickness had taken her. Though he was still young, there was no hesitation in K’inich’s voice when he addressed the men.
“Jakiir, I wish to journey to the Trials and test my skill in the presence of the Sky Warriors.”
More laughter filled the longhouse. All the men were listening now.
“Have you been chewing the nightgrass, boy? If you don’t die of hunger or thirst, a dust-tiger is bound to rip you to shreds. We sent our tithe of youths a week ago, warrior’s sons all of them. Don’t embarrass yourself by chasing childish dreams.”
“Any youth of age can choose to undergo the trials. It is law. And by law I am entitled to a weapon and supplies, so that I may reach the proving grounds.”
Jakiir gave him a long look before replying.
“If you do this, boy - you will never be able to return to the village. Victory or death. That too is law, little Bloodeye.”
The boy leant forwards slightly, and the faintest smirk played across his face.
“I have no interest in returning to the village, nor would you ever want my sword-arm for raiding. Besides, there is already enough might in this longhouse to raid the grass-folk’s villages and murder old women in their beds.”
The heads taken from the previous autumn’s raids stared silently from the rafters, their mouths slack and open, as if in shock at the boy’s lack of respect.
Jakiir’s retinue tensed, ready to step in and punish the boy’s insolence. Jakiir spat again, this time forcefully, full of anger. The tall warrior’s words were slow and deliberate.
“If you weren’t my sister’s bastard son you’d be dying on the floor of this hall by now. Take what is your due and disappear by nightfall. If I ever see you again I’ll take your head and use your skull to piss in, you vile curseling.”
As K’inich stepped out of the longhouse he relaxed. Every challenge he would face from now on was an unknown, and it filled him with in equal parts with eagerness and trepidation. A drop of blood ran from his eye, and he wiped it away with great care. He frowned. He wanted no more of the stagnant ways of his people. Ever since his mother had told him tales of them, he had wanted to seek out the Sky Warriors. He wanted to raid with them and learn the secrets of the sun, moon and stars. Quickly, he forced himself to interrupt his musings. He had little time, and there was a great journey to prepare for.
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K’inich Bloodeye is Master of the Ninth Company of the Flaming Swords. In over three hundred years of service he has scoured the Imperium's foes from the galaxy. The Ninth Company is the Chapter's Devastator reserve and since his induction into the Chapter's leadership he has molded them into an even more redoutable force, with greater emphasis on mobile firepower. His helmet is decorated with a blood drop below the left eye, commemorating the disfigurement that plagued his childhood until his ascension as a Space Marine warrior. His artificer armour is fitted with a unique servo harness, the Sagitta Acritudo. The harness incorporates both a cyclone missile launcher and rare targeting and stabilizer mechanisms that permit the system to fire on the move, allowing its bearer to unleash a hail of firepower before closing range for the kill. As of 998.M41 Captain K'inich and elements of the Ninth and Tenth Companies were present at the Siege of Megellis, providing vital fire support to assault elements of the Heralds of Vengeance and Nemesis Chapters, as the Space Marines prepared to retake the planet's ruined Hive Cities from the forces of Warboss Gulgruk Steelfang.
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