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[DW] Blackthorn/Swordhand: Episode III - The Sundered House

Deathwatch Roleplaying Game RPG Play by Post Commissar Molotov Blackthorn Kill-Team Blackthorn Fantasy Flight Games Kill-Team Swordhand Swordhand

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#2326
Steel Company

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As the squad filed out to get their equipment ready for the test, Tyber privately voxed back to the chaplain, +It is not that I have misgivings about taking command, it is that I had a moment of, maarama o te kaupapa, clarity of purpose or reason of existence. I understand why the avenues of command were always closed to me now, it is not the path I as meant to walk, and when I finally return to my home chapter, I will need to make amends to the one I was jealous of.+

 

He paused as he started to make his way to the library to start putting together a worthy test, and added, +Though I am grateful for any thoughts you wish to offer.+

 

++++

 

True to his word, an hour later Tyber called the squad of Blackthron together in the training halls, looking over the squad he spoke to them, with his helm off, “Brothers, I have put something together that should test how well we can work together.”

 

He paused to gesture to the jungle ruins behind him as he continued, “Somewhere in there, you will find the target for this operation, but they are protected by both lesser versions of the target’s kind as well as physical traps and dangers.”

 

Turning back to the squad he added, “The only hint I will give you, is that they are deceptive.”

 

Stepping back before heading to the control room, he said one last thing, “I expect great things from us, Blackthorn, let us show Swordhand why we are the best this watch station has to offer!”

 

 

Okay, for some math and dice rolls:

 

We will need:

 

Scouting (Stealth / Scrutiny / Security / Perception [flat stat] as it will be visual) checks, at least 2 successful

 

Ballistic tests (at least 4) successful

 

Weapon Skill tests (at least 3) successful

 

Each member can test once, each fail will need a toughness test to represent being caught off guard and attacked by the elder.

 

 

Foes to be seen / dealt with:

 

1 Squad Dire Avengers (6 man strong)

 

1 Squad Eldar Rangers (3 man strong)

 

1 Squad Striking Scorpions

 

1 Eldar Atuarch

 

2 Guardian squads (8 man)

 

Feel free to write this narratively, please work together to craft your posts to make for a flowing narrative for this test. Tyber will be standing back, watching and taking notes on how the squad works to bring down this test. A successful test for WS / BS will represent one of the foes being brought down, and a successful stealth/security/scrutiny/perception test will allow the squad to by pass one of the foes.


Edited by Steel Company, 28 February 2021 - 09:43 PM.

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#2327
adesro18

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Atreus Maladon gathers with his two brothers as part of the training exercise as part of team secundus. A very interesting exercise. Clearly to test our adaptability. Gathering under the curtain wall as their insertion point, one thing became clear the Atreus as they prepared to embark. The area was more fortified than indicated than the briefing by their newly appointed sergeant. Strategic error or test of skill? Atreus was not yet certain as to which it was, but clearly he was put in the right spot for his team to overcome this challenge. Using the incredible strength of his servo arm he began to peel apart the fortification and tear it down, leaving easy access for his squad brothers to make their push inside the simulated T'au compound. With a scream of wrenching metal the supports for the defenses were removed severely damaging the structure, leading to its collapse. From here he would let his brothers Thire and Vorr lead the way, for they likely had more experience with the actual storming of the breach he just created.

Atreus could not help but ponder the decision made by their sargent. A lack of data like this in the field could see the death of a kill team. Was it a way to see how the squads behaved and adapted under pressure, to demonstrate the strengths of team members? Was it simply a lack of judgement, lack of experience? Atreus was not sure, could not calculate a clear answer from the variables. Perhaps he would have to speak with his new sargent later when they had a private moment to guage the intent of this small simulation.



Later after training for the day is over Atreus made a mental note to invite his new squad to come to the forge. In honor of his new squad mates and their first test of fire, it was tradition for the Astral Drakes to denote the members of their squads with a small symbol of brotherhood. Together they would pick an emblem to represent themselves and he would forge icons for all to wear as a symbol of honor and courage, as a symbol of brotherhood.
 


Edited by adesro18, 28 February 2021 - 09:37 PM.

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#2328
Necronaut

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Helgrim nodded to Tyber. +As you say, brother. The squad is yours.+

He spurns leadership, and yet he bears the mantle well. Alas, a good sculptor does not blame the rock he is given to work upon.

Helgrim turned and withdrew to the Reclusiam whilst Tyber worked to see to his prayers. The chaplain later returned when Tyber voxed that he had finished with his preparations, and joined him in the control room.

Edited by Necronaut, 01 March 2021 - 01:49 AM.

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#2329
A.T.

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The training room chosen by Tyber was uncharacteristically vast for a space station, the outer blast doors and reinforced structures resembling the standard template designs for asteroid mining facilities on a far larger scale. Once in humanities distant past likely created alongside the weapons of the dark age of technology to harvest resources from planets by cracking them apart from orbit.

 

Now though the template served as a reinforced hold to test the skills of the astartes, even melta weapons no threat to the the hull here. Transport lighters had dragged million of tons of foliage from the surface below, all so that the tests might be properly contained and monitored. Specially crafted servitors and tech-assassins would be fed data from auspex systems around the room and from the Astartes auto-senses themselves to better simulate the witch powers of the xenos.

 

Brother Tybers decision to observe from a distance was not unusual for a training exercise but invited another to assume the role of leader in his absence. Perhaps by intent, but such a question was for those with greater aspirations to command than Atratus. "The hunt is on. I will locate our prey".

 

Swiftly the Raptor moved ahead of the others, the turbines of his jump pack cool as he relied on its grav plates to lighten his step. High above in the control room Tyber would be directing the servitors positions to flank and intercept, a challenging foe but Atratus wondered if the real reason for the test was the presence of the Aeldari abort the Glory Be - a matter far from concluded for Blackthorn.

 

Spoiler


Edited by A.T., 01 March 2021 - 11:29 AM.

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#2330
Commissar Molotov

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As the Raptor relays targeting information on the newly-found threat, Varvost leaps into action, landing heavily among a group of the combat servitors on a pillar of flame.

The cybernetic creatures' reflexes have been enhanced to something like those of the Aeldari they emulate, and they immediately move to attack the threat in their midst.

WS72(+10 Hunter of Aliens) = WS82: 73 (PASS, barely)
(If this is a Charge roll, then the +20 for Berserk Charge makes WS102: 73 (Pass, 2DoS))


Smashing one servitor aside bodily with the bulk of his power armour, the Eradicator manages to hook his chain-axe around the bladed limb of another, trapping it and giving him time to empty his bolt pistol in the man-machine's chest. The vicious serrated teeth of his axe howl hungrily, deprived of anything to bite into.

They are not denied for long.

As Varvost sets to work, you all see fleshen limbs and cybernetic implants arc through the air before coming down heavily on the deck.

Edited by Commissar Molotov, 01 March 2021 - 12:59 PM.

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#2331
ashlander47

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The Raptor had pushed forward like the prickly sensation of displaced air proceeding rain. The Eradicator had arrived in a bolt of hot lightning to rend and tear asunder. Now it was time for the storm to arrive.
 
Utilising the auspex data fed to the squad by Atratus as he ranged forth, and the roaring report of Varvost's chain-axe and kill-feed pict-imagery, the Consecrator cross-referenced them to ascertain a point of strength within the surrounding faux-jungle. Surging forward in the wake of the Raptor and under the clash and rattle of the Eradicator, Incariel was able to locate an elevated section that gave a commanding view over the natural approach both deeper into the choking mock battle arena, and also over his own flank. As he advanced he transmitted his predicted firing vectors and targeting solutions via encoded data squirt to better inform Blackthorn where his reach extended and what avenues of attack he could offer support along.
 
His power armour growled with anticipation as he vaulted several outcroppings and heaved his immense bulk over the crest of a dell, and in sympathy the machine spirit of Iunioris Mortis began to thrum to the same pulse of battle. The Consecrator allowed himself to indulge in the lust for but a moment before finalising the targeting resolution selection with a blink within his visor and allowing the overlay to drop down and meld with the surroundings. As he did he watched the foliage across the dell that had been lazily swaying to and fro glistening with waxy sweat be parted, and from the opening lurched a gaggle of mechanical proxies of what his armour's display insisted were Aeldari.  Their stilted gait was alerted but cautionary as they approached the sounds of the Eradicator and the rest of Blackthorn press into their number. They aimed to reinforce their kin. He aimed for centre mass.
 

Ballistic Skill:

BS74 (+20 Full Auto Burst) = BS94: 80 (Pass, 1 DoS + Solo Mode Ability Storm of Vengeance adding +2, for 3 DoS total)

 

Just as he had orchestrated, his position placed them in enfilade to his barrage with little in the way of approaching cover. Several of the would-be mechanical mummers popped and fragmented from the opening fusillade alone, yet the intent was to halt their advance entirely and make them unable to use their numbers or superior speed to full effect. The Aeldari were known to be fleet of foot, and no doubt these machines had been altered to account for that, but few can outrun a bolt round fired down the rank of your echelon.

 
+Contact on mine position, brothers. They art pressed 'neath my fire. I tally five still able to bear. Observe mine firing matrix and flank accordingly.+
 
As he heard the responses and acknowledging vox-clicks through his helm, he kept his senses sharp for any trickery. The Drakeling did not just accidentally lean on the word deceptive; there was to be foul-play afoot before the end of this exercise.

Edited by ashlander47, 01 March 2021 - 07:19 PM.

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#2332
Ancient_Sobek

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Pyke stalked through the undergrowth his frag cannon sweeping the area ahead of him as he followed the tactical marines into the tree line. He was still getting used to the movements of his new teammates. Their movement patterns were different than his last team, but in time he would mesh better with them.

 

A vox came in from the Raptor, Atratus. He had made contact with the enemy. Aeldari scum from the sound of it. Severix had dealt with them many times before. He held them in disdain, their craven trickery offending his sense of honor.

 

With the revelation of their foe, Pyke altered his movements slightly, using his past experiences to assess the landscape. The tactics of this particular brand of xenos lent themselves toward ambush and concealment. His eyes scanned the trees ahead looking for anything that might give away his foe’s position.

 

The jungle erupted with the sound of heavy bolter fire from a ridge to his right drawing his attention. Whatever Incarial had found, it was feeling the full weight of his wrath.

 

 

“Contact on mine position, brothers. They art pressed 'neath my fire. I tally five still able to bear. Observe mine firing matrix and flank accordingly.” The Consecrator voxed over the team comms.

 

“Acknowledged, moving to intercept from your left” he sent back as he shifted his path toward the designated kill box.

 

As he started forward he felt Breaker growl in his hands, the aggressive machine spirit sensing enemy nearby. He felt it too, a subtle wrongness in the air. The cannon tugged to the left sensing the foe moments before a viscous chain blade made a killing arc towards his head. Reeling away from the attack he caught the blade on his left vambrace, it’s teeth biting into the armor.

 

Pyke kicked out with his leg feeling the slight frame buckle from the force of his blow. As his foot came down he landed so that his legs were braced against the recoil of the frag cannon. Four more assailants burst from the undergrowth intent on avenging their fallen comrade. Striking Scorpions, that explained how they got so close. This particular foe excelled at ambush. Sadly they misjudged the threat of the Death Knight, thinking the lone warrior an easy prey.

 

“DEATH ETERNAL!” He roared the warcry of his chapter as he squeezed the trigger of his weapon.

 

The chugging boom of the cannon washed over the onrushing foe milliseconds before the shrapnel from the fragmentation cannon ripped through their bodies. Breaker bucked with each deadly shot, filling the air with razor sharp bits of steel. The enemy charge faltered as the wave of mutilating debris tore into their bodies. Pulped and bloodied chunks of servitor littered the ground before him as a pink mist of vaporized blood drifted to the forest floor. 

 

He panned the cannon slowly around the area seeking any remains assailants. Satisfied that the ambush was neutralized. He set off toward the rally point to rendezvous with his teammates. As he made his way deeper into the trees he could feel his cannon purring happily in his grip.

 

Pyke's Ballistic Skill (BS) of 62 (+10 for a Semi-Auto Burst)(+10 for Short Range of 10 metres or less) = BS82 (if you roll 62 or less, you hit twice)

 

Roll = 16 (7 Dos)
 


Edited by Ancient_Sobek, 03 March 2021 - 06:01 AM.

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#2333
apologist

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[Placeholder]

 

[Spoilered copy of Chaka's post to ensure cohesiveness – I'll delete once finished]

Spoiler


Edited by apologist, 02 March 2021 - 01:55 PM.

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The Alien Wars – Blood Angels in the Nova Terra Interregnum | May You Live Forever – A narrative Iron Hands blog

Officio Monstrosa – Iron Warriors during the siege of Terra | The Praetors of Calth – Ultramarines from Crusade to Scouring


#2334
That Beyond the Light

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Ballistic 49 -  Roll 20 ( 2 DoS )

 

“I expect great things from us, Blackthorn, let us show Swordhand why we are the best this watch station has to offer!”

 

As the marines enter the over grown jungle setting Tybers voice announces its self across the vox as he stands in the control room.

 

“Be ready my Brothers, the trial begins”

 

It begins and the enemy initiate their programming.

 

Ekieo’s auto senses immediately scan the visible area and his own keen perception scans what can not be seen. As two marines advance of positions of height Ekieo notices a soft russell of branches in the distance. Looking deeper he see’s the broken outline of Eldar Rangers. Having fought them before ekieo knows that distinctive shape and the familiar cunning of this xenos foe. He flags and pings the location of the enemy to the team before requesting back up on a tactical manoeuvre. Two other marines tag Ekieo and the manoeuvre is initiated.

 

Incariel begins to unleash the fury of his heavy bolter upon the Guardian unit that has begun to advance. The noise is monstrous and the sight awe inspiring. Shells tearing through the jungles under growth, vegetation shredded apart as the marines well placed position offers a constant charge for the heavy bolter to unleash its hellish payload. Ekieo decides this is the moment that will offer them the break they need to cover the distance needed to get within striking distance of the Rangers
The team and Ekieo move swiftly ducking and dodging the hell fire striking closely above them, dashing and diving between cover, staying as invisible as a 7ft marine in hulking power armour can be. In helm displays flashing and feeding them vital information and calculations about themselves and their brethren in order to optimally reach their targets. They need to intersect the Rangers before they find the high ground and start to snipe off brothers.

 

Digging deep, they push on harder, now becoming the objects tearing through the jungle, the sound of the Heavy bolter still thunders on but the wizz and shreek of its bullets is softening. The silhouettes of their targets is getting harder to distinguish as the undergrowth becomes thicker.

 

Ekieo makes a  quick calculation and over the vox advises of his outcome

 

“We need to split”

 

Ekieo looks at the marines

 

“you left, you right, ill blind side”.

 

As they near closer Ekieo cocks his bolter ready to engage, the vox once more chatters between the three,

 

“Lets make this swift, engage at will”

 

Ekieo slides threw the last bit of jungle bush and exits in a small opening where the rangers are preparing to fire upon the Marines placement near the start of the arena. Long rifles poised upon branches and a spotter relaying information to the other 2. Organised but unaware of what is about to unfold, its to late now.

 

Ekieo locks onto the first ranger as he aims down the scope of his rifle. A single round pierces the breathing mask of the ranger. His lifeless and now headless body slumps to the floor. The marine on the left bursts through the jungle cover, using his full bulk and stature to charge the Ranger, striking his elbow and forearm into the throat of his target. The sound of bone crunching and breaking stings true on the slight breeze that flows through the air. The third marine comes just over the left shoulder of the last ranger who was the spotter of the group. He turns as he realises what is happening and reaches for his blade, but it futile. The blade of last marine is firmly sunk into the his back. He is unable to reach further and the life slips from his vessel.

 

“Ekieo here, a ranger group has be executed. We will hold position in cover and await further orders”.


Edited by That Beyond the Light, 03 March 2021 - 04:46 PM.

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#2335
Komrade_Atomic

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As the techmarine created their opening, Gideon watched in cover with hidden awe, the power of a single servo arm as it tore through the foundations. Much like a power fist which he had seen one of his Chapters most honoured wear, it gave no thought to items which hindered its way, reducing its obstacles to dust and rubble.  However, Gideon then turned his attention to their surrounding area. From their briefing, this was supposed to be lightly guarded and fortified, but there had obviously been either counter intelligence, or this was planned from the start, to give us a harder challenge. 

 

After the breach was made, and Atreus stepped back to give them space, Gideon nodded his thanks, and checked his Bolter off Safety. Crouching slightly and moving into the breach created, he smiled in his helmet, and spoke: "Nice work." before taking point and progressing down, and carefully advancing, careful to move as quietly as he could, to get the drop on anyone who could be ahead.

 

 

Silent Move (Ag)

Rolled 39 = 45 (0 DoS)

 

Leading their squad into the vent, moving as silently as possible, Gideon thought of how the other teams would be faring. The Ammo Depot would soon be a rife combat area, and Gideon could only pray for their best, and while he would rather have been charging in, Bolters Blazing, he did enjoy a more subtle approach. That being said, the destruction of the vent may have attracted unwanted attention, but Gideon, whatever the tau sent at them, would be ready for it.


Edited by Komrade_Atomic, 02 March 2021 - 03:09 PM.

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#2336
adesro18

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Atreus watches Gideon pass through the hole he made in the defenses, letting him take the lead as was suitable for their roles. He awaited for the tactical marine to call him to advance over the vox while he covered his battle brother, bolter trained through the breach.


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#2337
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Vorr would prefer to dig in and start firing missiles at the Tau position but his field of fire was poor this side of the breach so he followed the tactical marine quietly through the breach to get into a more suitable shooting position.

Silent move Agility
Rolled 29 Vs agility 50 (2 DoS)

Time to get loud. Vorr smiled beneath his Corvus pattern helmet.
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#2338
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Ballistic Skill Test:

BS 58 (+10 Semi-auto) =BS68: 80 (Fail , 1 DoF)

 

Argus had been eager to begin a training operation under his new Sergeant. He wanted to understand his methods, not just so he could be prepared for their first true mission, but because a veteran of the Deathwatch would be amongst the most experienced front-line fighters in the entire Imperium. And so, Argus found himself disappointed during the mission briefing. He would not be operating with the entirety of his new squad and their new leader would be remaining behind. Part of him knew that this was a test so that this new Sergeant could gauge their abilities, but he still resented the need.

 

                Team Tertius proceeded on foot to their staging point. The assault marine Chaka Embe took point during the infiltration with Argus in the middle and the apothecary at the rear. As the squad trudged on Argus reflected upon their opposition. He had heard of the upstart Tau, but never thought to face them as their minor empire was too distant from his usual area of operations. He regretted the lack of time spent studying these vile xenos. He would endeavor to rectify that ignorance at the earliest opportunity. For now, he walked on. As he did so, he noticed that Embe was favoring one leg as he walked. Argus recalled hearing about the marine’s recent injuries and hoped they would not affect the success of this training operation. Perhaps, Argus realized, that was why the apothecary had been assigned to this squad, to keep an eye on his injuries.

 

                After their march was finished and the three marines looked over the encampment Argus felt some trepidation. If this was a test, surely there would some surprises in store for them. However, it seemed as though their briefing had been accurate and there was a noticeable blind spot in their overwatch.

 

                Chaka’s head spun quickly towards Argus. +I can’t raise the other squads.+ He stated with surprising calm.

 

                Argus tried his own comms and was unable to reach the other squads. There distance was not enough to interfere, so this was likely deliberate on the part of their new Sergeant. Well, he had expected something of the sort. He shook his head in response to Chaka and noted that Yeng did the same. Argus thought quickly.

                + We have no way of knowing if the other squads are in trouble,+ he said over the helmet comms.

 

               +If they are under attack, it would explain the lack of opposition along this perimeter+ replied Chaka.

 

                + Or this could be a trap for us,+ said Yeng.

Argus tried to think through the situation. They should have had plans in place for something like a communication breakdown, but they were so rare due to the power and reliability of Astartes equipment that the no one had considered the necessity. If Argus learned nothing else from this operation he would remember that.

 

                With no information on the other squads, it was entirely possible that they were already eliminated and they were advancing into a trap. However, it was equally possible that the other squads were in danger and needed the help of squad tertius.

 

Chaka broke the silence without moving his eyes from the enemy perimeter. +Even if this is only training, we cannot let our brothers down. We’re the only team without a Devastator Marine, so I suggest we charge into close quarters before they can bring their guns to bear.+

 

He was right Argus realized. With their small numbers and without the guarantee of the other squads support the had to move quickly and aggressively. Argus looked at the apothecary for a moment before Yeng nodded his head in assent.

 

+ What did you have in mind?+ Argus inquired.

 

+I will perform hit and run strikes by Jump Pack on their massed squads and thin their ranks, I trust you can provide first aid if I am hit, Yeng.+

 

Yeng nodded in confirmation, +I shall. Just take care not to overextend yourself, you are technically still recovering, even if you are mostly combat ready.+

 

Argus watched and waited for the blind spot to re-emerge before ordering the charge out of their cover and into the enemy. Chaka took flight on his jump pack soaring towards the largest group of infantry. Argus took aim at the sentry with the best view of Chaka’s approach. Unleashing a barrage of bolter fire at the sentry, he was shocked to see every bolt miss. Had Vorkys interfered with his more than just the comms? Was his bolter compromised as well, or was Argus just embarrassing his Chapter’s good name. Regardless, he sprinted forward with his bolter at his hip firing at whatever targets emerged (Talent: Hip Shooting). Hopefully his poor aim had not doomed Chaka.


Edited by Jeremy.Phillips, 04 March 2021 - 04:37 AM.

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#2339
Brother Argent

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Placeholder - Pallan either goes spotter for someone or goes toe to toe with some training eldar


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#2340
Steel Company

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Tyber stood in the control center, watching how quickly the squad moved with each other and he said to himself, “Is this what Vaidan saw, when he stood in this place? Bothers from different legions working together as a single unit? Or is this what the codex provides them, the ability to just work together so seamlessly?”

 

When no answer came, he looked to the display, seeing that several of the groups had already been crushed and that Varvost was nearing on the leader unit. A smile coming to Tyber’s lips as he says, “Very predictable, Varvost, and yet I commend you for taking such a direct path.”

 

Turning his head to look at the selected units, he activated a surprise that he had planned for when they engaged the leader, a construct that had been coded as Wraith Guard, and he said, “Let us see how you react to this Varvost.”


Edited by Steel Company, 03 March 2021 - 03:39 PM.

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#2341
Commissar Molotov

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Seeing the enemy target exposed, Varvost guns his jump pack, launching forward with his chain-axe howling for blood.

It is at that moment that Tyber's "surprise" unveils itself, the monstrous simulacrum of the Aeldari War-machine interposing itself between the Eradicator and the enemy. It brings one massive hand round, clubbing Varvost away to land heavily against a tree.

If the target is to fall, another of the Kill-Team will have to make the deathblow.

Edited by Commissar Molotov, 07 March 2021 - 11:32 AM.

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#2342
ApostleRP

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[Placeholder]

 

Ballistic skill check to fire on 'Wraitguard' 

 

Ballistic skill check: Target 92 - Result 73

 

Lycus fires from an elevated position to draw the attention of the construct to allow Varvost to disengage. 


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#2343
AHorriblePerson

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Boros only took his eyes off Titus once the Stormbringer had vanished in the shadows, turning back towards their mark to coordinate the assault on the main gate.

The plan was easy enough. Cover the gate, suppress the enemy. Kill everything that moves and once the other teams linked up with them, begin clearing the building. What few sentries remained between him, Thorvald and the entrance were oblivious to their presence; barely a threat to the harrowing that was to come. Live-fire or not, Boros thought, this is farcical. What he yearned for was the challenge of true combat, the raw struggle of life against death and a chance to have his own fill of vengeance for his late brethren. The only way to any of his ambitions, however, led through the mass of combat servitors, stub guns and multilasers that lay before them. Like the Stormbringer, he wanted this done quick and clean. Boros turned to Thorvald, whose weapons were already drawn in anticipation. Red eye lenses locked as he laid out his strategy for their approach.

 

Tactics (Assault Doctrine) Test: I 49 = Rolled a 49 (Phew!) - Success, 0 DoS.

 

++We will need to work for our way into the building, Kinsman. While the Son of Jaghatai clears the guards to our rear, I would have you attack the foe we can see.++ He pointed at the cyborgs executing standard patrol patterns in front of them. ++Harry the servitors. Provide the chaos we need to destroy them swiftly and advance to the gate. I will cover you every step of the way.++ Boros hesitated for a moment before continuing, hoping the thin smile he wore would carry through the growl of his modulated voice. ++I pray that age hasn’t slowed you yet, Old Wolf.++ He was glad to hear Thorvald’s jovial reply before the assault marine fired his jump jets, taking off into the enemy lines.


Edited by AHorriblePerson, 07 March 2021 - 07:36 AM.

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#2344
That Beyond the Light

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Ekieo looks down the sight on his blotter and can see from his position amongst the thick green vegetation, that a new player has entered the fray. A being of considerable size, strides into complete view. Ekieo pauses in recognition of what he sees, his heart rate rising only a fraction, his pupil's dilate, adrenaline ready to flood his system....a Wraith Guard. A squad deadly, but even one is a formidable force to contend with.

He watches as Varvost heroically attacks the Wraith Guard and grabs it throat, but it tosses him away like a twig. Varvost hits the floor and is obviously stunned. A hail of shells rains down in the giant and seems to draw its attention away from Varvost long enough for him gather himself and get out of there.

Ekieo decides this could be an opportunity to take a shot and if not put down the Wraith Guard, at least stun it for long enough that another brother can finish this.

Weapon skill test
WS 46 +10 for aim = 56 - roll 22 ( 3 Dos)

Ekieo takes aim, looking for that chink in its armour. The pipes running below its chest looked like an educated spot to take fire. He breaths, clears his thoughts and focuses his mind on the target. He squeezes the trigger with the upmost care, hamnering that pin into the chambered shell. It ignites and releases its deadly cargo, the empty housing flung out of the chamber and spun into the air. The bolter round cuts the air, rotating steadily as it travels to its target.
Ekieo's eyes still honed peering through lens and scope, data rapidly scrolling within his helm. Quietly focused the round hits its target perfectly. The impact puts the Wraith Guard off balance and it stumbles. Ekieo waits with hope for the xenos monstrosity to keel over, but it doesn't. It regains its balance and rises back up, clearly stunned but still able to fight.

Can anyone else take this chance and take advantage of the confused Wraith Guard?

Edited by That Beyond the Light, 04 March 2021 - 07:30 AM.


#2345
Nineswords

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[Placeholder]

+++

'We are the sword of Jaghatai. Had you not created great sins, the Emperor would not have sent a punishment like us upon you.'

 Index Astartes: Storm Sons
+++

‘We estrange our fathers and forsake false brotherhoods. The War God cares not from whence we came, only that we fight.’
The Unbroken: A Renegade Cult of Obliteration

+++


#2346
Commissar Molotov

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Per discussion in the OOC thread, I will assume that Nineswords' placeholder will resolve the Blackthorn training exercise. Perhaps the heroic work of Blackthorn in fighting off the Wraithguard allows Greysight the opportunity to kill the Autarch - I'll leave that for Blackthorn players to back-fill at an opportune time.

With the Watch-Sergeants selected for both Blackthorn and Swordhand, the training can proceed apace. As the battle-brothers are launched into a dizzying array of exercises, Helgrim and Achillion work in concert with Tyber and Kol to ensure that these disparate warriors from wildly differing Chapters can be forged into Kill-Teams of the Deathwatch.

For hours on end, the Kill-Teams are put through combat exercises that test their limits. They fight together; they eat together; they pray together. Gradually, all of you begin to gain an understanding - even an appreciation - of your peers, and the unique strengths that they possess.

You see Watch-Captain Diocles observing some of these tests, nodding approvingly as you begin to work in concert with one another.

Upon reflection, I’ve been considering the approach Mazer has taken with his game. His solutions are elegant ones and I’d never even really considered that it could be done - but I think it hews closer to the intention of what Deathwatch as a game is supposed to be.

Accordingly, all members of Blackthorn and Swordhand will gain the following Talents:

Hypnogogic Induction (Free, 0XP): All Battle-Brothers gain the Forging the Bond Talent as described in Rites of Battle. This allows you to share your Chapter-specific tactics for an additional 3 Cohesion points. This must be accompanied by narrative where you lead your brothers in your Chapter's ways of warfare.

Our Hands Bring Death (Free, 0XP): All Battle-Brothers count as having the Twin Weapon Wielder (Ballistic) and Twin Weapon Wielder (Melee) Talents. This means they suffer no penalty for using a pistol in one hand and a melee weapon in the other at the same time, as long as they are also Ambidextrous.

Any Battle-Brother who has purchased any of these Talents may immediately refund them and use the XP for other Skills, Talents or Characteristic advances. For some of you, that means you'll have a potential extra 1500XP! Advise me in the OOC thread how you’ve reallocated your XP.


+ + +

It is on the third day that a great bell tolls, calling the Kill-Teams to assemble in Azurea’s Strategium. For some of you, this ranks among your first times in the chamber; its large, circular expanse is filled with tiers that allow you to sit or stand as you desire. The outer walls are adorned with faded banners of the Deathwatch; it seems almost as if the ghosts of former Battle-Brothers stand with you. The centre of the Strategium is dominated by a hololithic projector. The Watch-Captain stands here, flanked by the intimidating figures of Chaplain Helgrim and Codicier Achillion.

The display currently shows a three-dimensional representation of the nearspace around Azurea. You see the Watch-Station itself, hanging in orbit of a bloated gas giant; you see the planetary system, the defense stations and the intricately-layered minefields designed to prevent any unwanted presence in the system. Close to the station you see the titanic bulk of the Clepsydra and its supporting vessels, looming ominously like a thundercloud.

Further out, near the system’s edges, you see the sigil-runes of the Deathwatch strike cruiser Xenocide. It travels next to a smaller vessel, escorting it towards the station - and the runic identifiers it displays are immediately recognisable to all of you.

Compared to the titanic bulk of the Clepsydra - or even the stark lines of the Xenocide, the ship approaching the Watch-Station is small, like a silver arrow shot into the void. It moves with urgency and haste, like a coursing hound straining at the leash. You get the impression it would outstrip the Xenocide if it could - if such an action would not mean sudden death beneath the Deathwatch’s guns.

“We have a guest,” the Captain intones. “The Ordo Xenos have arrived.”

+ + +

The first arrival in the Strategium is Siskus Rubio, the Shipmaster of the Xenocide. He stands tall, the badges and iconography on his uniform gleaming in the light. He nods respectfully to you all; some of you who have served with him may even return the gesture. A life of service in the Deathwatch has seen the Captain grow accustomed to being around the Astartes - but not comfortable. Complacency has never been an attribute you could ascribe to Shipmaster Rubio.

As you wait, many of you will have the opportunity to reflect upon your previous interactions with the Inquisition. For some of you, they will have been mercifully rare - for others, frustratingly common. The Inquisition are an unknown quantity, a cabal as divided in their methodologies as they are in their politics. Some take the garb of the crusader, marshalling great armies in the Emperor’s name. Others work in the shadows and the rain-slicked gutters. One never quite knows what working alongside the Inquisition will entail.

But even with that certain knowledge, when the double-doors of the Strategium swing open you find the strange procession they admit to be rather unexpected.

Your first sight is of two hulking servitors - clearly gene-bred lobotomised muscle - carrying a chair between them. The chair is lowered before you, and the servitors detach their carrying rigs before moving to stand impassively against the wall. If your gaze lingers upon them, you notice their glazed eyes and the subtle twitches of their lips, as though attempting to give voice to half-formed thoughts.

The occupant of the chair is an old man, clothed in grey robes with a variety of soiled shawls across his lap and his shoulders. His hair is lank and stringy; his face deeply lined, with a blade-thin nose and sharp chin. It seems as though his body is dissolving, as though he is the victim of some terrible wasting disease. His palsied hands rest in his lap, the translucent skin stretched tight against the knuckles as he clasps a golden icon - the Inquisitorial rosette that reveals his true power.

Behind him, you see two women. The first is gaunt, wearing a stiff-backed dress and a severely boned corset. Her head is entirely shaven, and tattoos in strange lettering mark her scalp. As she enters, the room seems to grow cold, as though all light has been snuffed out.

The effect here is particularly strong for Codicier Achillion, who feels as though he cannot fully inhale, as though an invisible hand is clamping his throat. The innate sixth sense that has been a part of his perception for almost the entirety of his life is stripped away from him in an instant.*

The second woman is more familiar, to some of you. The defenders of Syndalla will recognise Interrogator Haldane, the pupil of the fallen Inquisitrix Lythea. It is the first time you will have seen her since the triumphal parade in Beregar’s streets. Her hair is braided and up, and she wears a carapace breastplate across her torso that displays the sigils of the Inquisition and the Ordo Xenos. A smile - a slight one - ghosts at the edges of her lips as she recognises a few of you.

The Inquisitor fixes all of you with his gaze. His amber eyes shine with a sharp intelligence and an incredibly strong will.

“Greetings, warriors of the Chamber Militant. I am Grist…”

He succumbs to a wracking fit of coughing, and the bald woman bends down to attend to him, dabbing his lips with a silken handkerchief. Those of you who pay attention to the sight see that as she removes the cloth, it is spotted with blood.

Finally, he rights himself, and begins to speak again.

“I am Grist,” he repeats; his voice is raspy, like crackling parchment. “Nahun Grist, Inquisitor of the Ordo Xenos. Word has reached us of your efforts to prevent the Tyranid invasion of Syndalla. Countless billions now live because of your intervention. The lives of the Syndallans themselves, to say nothing of those hive worlds across the Dalthus Sector that depend on Syndallan grain to stave off collapse. You are to be commended for your sacrifices.”

There is a moment’s pause before the Inquisitor continues.

“I have been in communication with your Watch-Captain regarding your campaign; I have had access to the reports on your action and the testimony of Interrogator Haldane.”

At the mention of her name some of the more perceptive among you - or those of you who still have some understanding of the ways of mortal men - might notice a slight tightening of the Interrogator’s features, around her eyes, at the corners of her mouth. If Grist notices this, he gives no sign.

“But I would ask those who fought in the defense of Syndalla to speak now. Tell me what you know of the Dark Lantern.”

Those of you that fought at Syndalla (Tyber, Atratus, Sabaan, Greysight, Varvost, Vorr, Yeng and Thorvald) will be able to recall a few details here.

If you are new to the Watch, or were absent during the fighting (Artemios, Incariel, Arcost, Solza, Pyke, Kol, Boros, Embe, Titus, Thire, Maladon and Argus) this will likely be new information for you. During your time aboard the station you may have reviewed your Kill-Team’s previous campaign, but it is no match for hearing it from the mouths of the veterans themselves. You may however, still wish to post with your (unspoken) thoughts and judgements - there is a lot in this post to unpick!



*Just a note that I feel (in my interpretations of the 40k universe) that Pariahs and psychic nulls are meant to be vanishingly rare - so whilst the Librarians might know about such aberrations, it’s not something that would necessarily immediately be common knowledge to every Marine. Still, even if you know little of such creatures, all of you would feel uncontrollable disgust and revulsion towards her.

Edited by Commissar Molotov, 04 March 2021 - 03:13 PM.

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Check out my Deathwatch Roleplaying Game:
QUOTE (voi shet magir @ May 31 2011, 05:38 AM) 
That is an unexpectedly strong assertion from a dead person.

 


#2347
ashlander47

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Forty eight hours. How much can happen in two days? It can seem like a lifetime or the blink of an eye, depending on the context. For the diligent manufactorum worker it may be the difference between shift rotations, quota targets or simple allotted recuperation time. For wastrels and other such despondents, it might as well be xeno-script for what little meaning time has.
 
Forty eight hours had been spent on Watch-Station in constant motion. The capacity for Astartes to continue even in the face of gruelling physical punishment is a cornerstone of their legend, and within the candle-lit halls of Azura the legend came to life. What mortal men would consider a cruel and torturous regime, the Kill-Teams endured and overcame with all the grace and tenacity that their Emperor-given physiologies provided them. It was an orchestra of rippling muscle, thundering hearts, growling battle-plate and the barking boltguns and roaring of chainswords. Magnificant perhaps to observe, but amidst it all, the brothers were oblivious to the strange beauty and focused instead on their task. They were breaking down barriers of suspicion and mistrust and erecting bridges, forging bonds, becoming true battle-brothers of the Deathwatch.
 
Forty eight hours is ample time enough for many things. For an Astartes it might as well be an eternity.
 
+++
 
During the training the Consecrator had found his wandering memory to be amply concerned with the blistering pace of tactics, evolving stratagems, calculations and the constant adjusting and re-adjusting to the exercises. It kept him sharp, it kept him focused and more importantly it kept him from indulging in the quasi-delusions he had been struggling with since he arrived upon the Watch-Station. In the brief moments of peace that were not dedicated to meditations he kept his mind occupied with something many chapters would find distasteful; politics.
 
Rather, the politics of friendship. As part of the new batch of marines, Incariel's efforts to ingratiate himself with his brothers would be best initially targeted with those like himself: the newblood. To that effort he would share a conversation however brief with the freshly inducted members of Blackthorn whenever time or opportunity would allow. In doing so he shifted his disposition accordingly to each marine he spoke to, like a soldier's silhouette may bend and change shape when draped in cameleoline, he never truly took the same tack with either marine, and approached each exchange of words like facing a different breed of enemy, in a prelude to some grand social battle. An ingrained habit to be sure, but one that has served him well in the strange and secretive ranks of his own chapter. To exist as a knight of a secret order is to exist as both fluid political entity and an known ineffable quantity. Like a layer of promethium on water he would shift, change, separate and mingle, but he would never become what he was not and never lose sight of the real goal; brotherhood.
 
For the Black Consul he wielded empathy. Solza had served in the Deathwatch for two decades and was a veteran of its esoteric nature, doctrines and enemies. He had knowledge to impart were he of a mind to do so, and knowledge is power as the old Terran adage wisely stated. He was also a survivor of extinction. A bitter remnant of an all but eradicated brotherhood. Incariel would approach this with tact, for while the Consecrators have often operated below adequate strength, it was nothing compared to the death of one's entire chapter. It would not be true parity, but enough to simplify the exchange and show appreciation.
 
For the Star Leopard he wielded conduct. The Apothecary was as brooding as Incariel at times, which would make assailing him with friendship difficult, but being a retracted hermit of his own mind-fortress, the Consecrator was well aware of the weaknesses of that particular stronghold. As a member of the Apothecarium, he knew Pallan was honour-bound to follow up and curate the physical well-being of his squad mates. Incariel would have to do little but imply or suggest his own very real concerns about his personal physiology to arouse the Star Leopard's interest, and invest himself in his concerns.
 
For the Star Phantom he wielded benevolence. This interloper to the old spirit of Blackthorn was spurned by the veterans, and viewed with an unjust amount of suspicion and indignation by the very sergeant the squad was now commanded by. Existing as a pariah in a brotherhood would serve none but the needy hearts of those still longing to hear the voice of Tyrant's Son once more. This kind of sentimentality was anathema to cohesion. Panacea would come from Incariel's acceptance and respect of Lycus -- he was a hero of the Imperium, and the Star Phantoms were loyal servants of the Throne. Loyalty is important. Loyalty is what binds everything together. Without it there is nothing.
 
And for the Death Knight he wielded humility. Against his better judgement Incariel had viewed Pyke with a certain prejudice that was not completely necessary. A combination of his own high personal standards being projected onto his peer, as well as a general wariness for the sons of Dorn, whose own obdurate nature is often mirrored in the sons of the Lion, though without any of the knightly grace or virtues. During the training he found Pyke to be flexible, discerning and though grim he was agreeable enough to the Consecrator's own black moods that he wasn't repulsed. It was with Pyke that he spent most of his resources of social warfare, for beyond the simple necessity of forming a bond of friendship and allegiance, the Death Knight was to be his counterpart in the squad and perhaps nowhere else in a Kill-Team was there need for a stronger bond than between the Devastators. The regicide games they played over the course of forty eight hours were stilted and calculated, with each move being openly discussed and tactics exchanged across the theoretical board -- for there was little time to go about the business of setting up and moving pieces when there was gruelling exercise to withstand.
 
+++
 
The bells tolled on the third day and there was to be a muster in the strategium. Was this assignment at last? He had mused with Solza over the likelihood of a mission so soon, and it seemed his breath may have been wasted. He longed to apply all he had learned in the field, to test out the breaking points of these new brotherhoods, to serve in the Slaying Shield, and to kill in the name of the Emperor once again.
 
Watch-Captain Diocles's announcement of the Ordo Xenos arriving caused a mixture of feelings to brew in the Consecrator's hearts. First was apprehension, for while serving within the chamber militant came with it the acceptance and expectation of oversight, the physical presence of an Inquisitorial agent was not something any Consecrator abided for any stretch of time. Prying eyes. Probing questions. Veiled threats. Pompous posturing. All things of the mortal world that he reviled, and all things of note that knightly orders are distrustful of. The feeling was mutual and he knew it. The Inquisition did not enjoy autonomous Space Marine forces, they merely tolerated them, and likewise the brotherhoods of Adeptus Astartes were equally disdainful of interfering mortal hands who would not understand, nor truly grasp the scope of all that must occur within a chapter -- though exceptions existed of course.
 
Lapdogs of the Inquisition, who might as well have been the personal army of the Ordos, were not unheard of. Several chapters acted as the bludgeon for an Inquisitor and their pet crusade. How ironic now, the Consecrator thought to himself as the doors opened and mortals filtered into the chamber, that he himself bore the mark. It was not too long ago that he acted under orders to prevent those wearing this seal from stealing chapter secrets. Such covetousness they displayed. Such arrogance. Who were they to deign what the sons of the Lion could and could not know? Destitute of all sense of virtue and decorum, it was a great honour to have been entrusted with the elimination of such scraping, servile lapdogs. They were the gaolers and wardens of the past, not mewling Inquisitorial sycophants who submit to demands.
 
He was no lapdog but again the irony stung him. The oaths, the honours, the prestige -- these were mere placating accolades to soothe the pride. He now worked to further the goals of mortal men. These were not distinctions of a true knight and a loyal servant.
 
A loyalty left untested is a loyalty left in question.
 
He recalled the words that had been spoken once again.
 
Bang. Bang. Bang.
 
The clanging footfalls of two servitors hefting a seated palanquin rang out in the chamber. Perched upon the seat was something more akin to a crusted canker than a man, but gripped between ghoulish fingers was the sign of his office and it was to be respected, even if his frail and despicable form was revolting. Sickening. Enraging. He could feel his battle-plate's auger systems swimming with threat assessment in sympathy to his own neural interface's reaction to this man.
 
No. Not the man. The... creature next to him. A woman. A disgusting mortal. Oh but to have lost all sense of duty and reason, he would he have enjoyed nothing else but to crush this thing's bones between his feet and scatter this mockery of humanity to the Void.
 
Why did he feel this way? He swallowed a frothing parcel of Betcher's with grimace. This was not normal. An Inquisitorial trick, perhaps? Such gambits would not work on him. He would overcome this strange feeling. Focus. Focus on what you know.
 
Bang. Bang. Bang.
 
+++
 
I am aboard the hulk. Again.
 
I look down at my hands. My helmet is cloven in twain. Dripping with ichor.
 
My ears rush with heartbeats. Over the thrum I hear the screaming. It is inhuman.
 
The section is decompressing. I can feel the pull of the Void. I struggle to stand.
 
The strike-team is nowhere to be seen. All around me is darkness. I can still hear the screaming.
 
Bolter fire illuminates the madness. I feel the grasp of something at my neck. I struggle free.
 
I see him there. He holds the blade of dark design. Dripping with ichor.
 
Wings of death envelop me.
 
+++
 
The data inloads of the strategium tore him from his reverie. There is a discussion happening. He should be paying attention. He was paying attention, not a scrap of information was going to waste, it all fell neatly into step behind the walls of his mind-fortress, locked away in the vaults of his memory, yet even so, he was distracted.
 
Vincindrael's rasping voice rumbled from behind him again.
 
"Pay heed, Incariel. Distractions are only that -- distractions. Hark; they speak of matters pertinent and yet here thee stand gawking at mortals again. Concern thyself not with things beneath us. Focus on thine own self."
 
It was a strange feeling. Stranger even than the odd creeping loathing he felt in the presence of the Inquisitor's pet. Vincindrael's words served to calm his nerves, and the threat-signums in his visor were dismissed with a blink-clink in kind. The ghostly visage of the Interrogator-Chaplain walked out from behind a flapping banner and came rest beside Incariel. Stood there in the shadowy upper tiers of the strategium, he took the chance to take his gaze off the central discussion for a moment to look at the delusion in full clarity.
 
He often recalled Vincindrael in the two distinct ways when the ornery old chaplain deigned to grace Incariel with a delusion. First as he was in life; resplendent, inspiring, motivating and oppressive. The very pinnacle of what zeal and ferocity could reach in an Astartes, a man who he both admired and hated. Second was how he appeared in death, and indeed how he appeared before Incariel's gaze at that very moment.
 
His throat was gone. That was the first thing he remembered always. The traitor had seen to it to take what was arguably the Interrogator-Chaplain's sharpest weapon -- his tongue -- before indulging the heretical ritual any further. His elegant armour was nowhere to be seen, instead he was naked and bound by thorny ropes of barbed steel that pressed into his raw muscle and coiled around ceramite-infused bone. His chest was rent open, his organs displayed out before him in a strange puppet-show of veins, tubes, tissues and musculature. Where his hearts once thundered with courage sat two withered husks skewered by the blade.
 
The blade of dark design. It sat there sheathed in the Interrogator-Chaplain's progenoid. Dark vapour slowly rising from it as it burned, froze, liquified and crystallised all that its edges cut into. This was the worst way to remember anyone. The sheer recollection of it caused him to grip the railing in front of him and begin bending the metal. 
 
"Thou art too focusèd on the wrong details, yet again, boy." the body of Vincindrael spoke despite lacking a voice. He gestured with an arm towards the centre of the strategium and the squealing of barbed rope against his flesh mimicked the quiet groaning of the railing beneath Incariel's fist. "Witness the grand picture to find truth in what thou shouldst dismiss and what thou shouldst recall."
 
A dotting of blood on the ghoulish Inquisitor's handkerchief. A tightening of the face from the woman named Haldane. The Dark Lantern. The vaults of his mind-fortress flew open and recollections of mission reports were carried by such force out into the forefront of his thoughts. As if to read them out loud, the original brothers of both Swordhand and Blackthorn attested to these accounts to the prying Inquisitor.
 
He stood there, shoulder to shoulder with the ghost of a dead man that wasn't truly there, listening, recording, observing, calculating.
 

Edited by ashlander47, 06 March 2021 - 12:42 PM.

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#2348
Mojake

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As Achillion stood beside Watch-Captain Diocles awaiting the Inquisitor's retinue, he thought back to the assault on the Drukhari Archon Thysk. Working alongside a radical Inquisitor of the Ordo Xenos had been a disturbing period in his time as a warrior of the Emperor, and one that he didn't actively reminisce upon. His mind was invaded by memories of the abhorrent pain engines and wyches. For the first time in years he thought back to his duel in the cabal spire, the twin xenos shadow assassins and their wicked blades glancing from his armour as Libra clove through the umbral silhouettes that they cast.

 

He was ripped from the nostalgia as she entered the Strategium.

 

The Codicier's usually placid face became a mask of contortion as he struggled with his perception. His hand instinctively went to his throat, and he fought to keep his composure.

 

Pariah.

 

This was not his first experience with a Blacksoul; his stint in Kill Team Khomus had him meet one of their kind before, and of course the shadow that the Great Devourer cast was similarly discomforting to his kind.

 

++ Brother-Librarian, how are you faring with this wretch? ++

 

Achillion's mind reeled, and he struggled to pinpoint the source of concern coming through his vox-bead. His full focus was now on maintaining his equanimity, thus the question went unanswered. The Codicier, a master of the aberrant extra-senses of the Warp, found himself blind and deaf in a relative sense. His concentration just barely allowed him to hear and understand the words of Inquisitor Grist.

 

Straightening, the moment of disorientation having lasted no more than a half-dozen seconds, Achillion focused on the man in the chair - ignoring the unfocused blur behind him as best as his willpower would allow. 


Edited by Mojake, 04 March 2021 - 11:48 AM.

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#2349
Reyner

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The urge to draw his combat shotgun and empty it into the Pariah was almost unbearable. He had no psychic abilities but could feel his mind become foggy and he struggled to focus if this was the effect this creature had on him the Librarian must truly be suffering. Vorr looked toward Achillion and opened a private vox channel.

++Brother Librarian how are you faring with this wretch?++

Vorr focused on the Interrogator and Inquisitor trying to ignore the pariah, it didn't help much but the urge to launch thirty heavy shotgun shells into the thing diminished a little.
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"I don't need my left arm to run." - Sergeant Arkad VII Legion bad-ass.


#2350
Komrade_Atomic

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Placeholder

Gideon recollects on his own encounter with an Inquisitor from a different Ordo, but an Inquisitor nonetheless.

Gideon (aware of the Pariah Gene) tries to distract himself from the 'abomination'.

Gideon notices how the Interrogator reacts to being mentioned by the Inquisitor.


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