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Recently the Elysian drop troops have captured my imagination. I also decided to give the fluff competion a bash. Im no author as you can probably tell but here is my attempt.
Its 1837 words in total, and I have tried to capture the more obscure parts of 40k.
Deus ex Machina
The air inside of the Valkryie was warm and thick with sweat. Each trooper sat nervously along the sides of the chamber, some of them made final adjustments to their Grav-Chutes and equipment, others just sat in silence their eyes burning enigmatically into space. The Sergeant sat nearest the cockpit; it was a position he felt most comfortable with, for it was here he could harass the pilot for information if anything went wrong with the flight. The mission plan was simple. They were heading towards an outpost just behind the enemy lines in which blueprints of the planets buildings were held. They had no idea if the enemy had managed to by-pass the security systems and download the files but just in case they had been ordered to destroy the building as the main line advanced hopefully causing havoc with the explosion and destroying enemy cover at the same time.
“Kappa Team drop site is nearing.” Crackled the pilot’s message over the Valkryie’s intercom “Please prepare for drop.”
As the Sergeant hit the ground with his team he looked towards the carnage of the main battle line, it was not looking good, but this was only to be expected. Enough troops had not been mustered in time to make this an even battle against Chaos. He quickly scanned the morning light for the enemy with his eyes. Recon had suggested that the building was only lightly fortified, with any troops holed up behind the walls in front of him; still he was taking no chances. With a flick of his hand he ordered his troops to take up positions, noting with pleasure that they had already started. If his team’s skill with their seven shotguns weren’t enough to give a nasty surprise then he knew the three melta-guns would be. Confident in their abilities he crept forward crouching low and moving noiselessly as to avoid detection if at all possible. As he reached the garden wall he sat with his back to it. The planet had been fairly devoid of defences in many places such as this before the Great Enemy had attacked. He now hoped that Chaos had not had enough time to fortify this place, but still he was not willing to take any chances. He lifted his head above the wall as quietly as possible brandishing his shotgun closely, the morning dew rolling smoothly down its sight. He searched the place for any adverse signs. As there seemed to be none he motioned for the squad to hop over the wall.
The building was fairly small, only on one level. It had belonged to an architect and a couple of tech-priests in its time; nothing gave any signs of change. When his team had all worked slowly to the foremost door, he had them take up positions, a melta-gun either side. A couple of troopers hung back in case they were taken by surprise. With one hand on his shotgun he pushed the door. With great surprise it opened easily and noiselessly. He signalled for two troopers with shotguns to enter. As much as he would have preferred to do this himself, he knew he had to delegate jobs such as this so that he could still complete the mission if necessary. He barely had time to do this when the two troopers came flying back out, each one in an unnatural pose. He fired with vague surprise as a hideous giant appeared in the doorway, laughing a horrific guttural laugh causing fear to rise up from depths he did not think he had. The Marine’s bolter spat a couple of rounds catching two more of his troopers in the chest. However the two heroic melta-gun bearers span round from the doorway firing beams of heat at almost point blank range into the Marines blasphemous armour completely decimating it. The marine fell. Something inside of the Sergeants head cheered, but he repressed this feeling knowing that where there was one there was bound to be a few more shortly. He sent two more troopers in this time each moved far more cautiously fearing a repeat of the last attack. Fortunately this did not happen.
As the walked down the corridor noticing the pock marks here and there of bolter shells and lasgun marks (presumably the occupants put up a defence, although why they would have had lasguns at hand he could only guess). Two more marines pilled round the corner with a speed that would have to belied their seemingly humanoid form. Bolt shells exploded around the corridor taking another two of his five remaining teammates. As he saw his closest friends drop to the floor the adrenaline, and anger gave him the strength needed to over-come the fear of these brutes and hold his ground. The corridor afforded them no cover so in a split second he chucked a grenade from his belt hoping that this would do the job that their shotguns seemed unable to. One of the marines exploded almost instantly but the other one just fell to the ground firing wildly. As the marine fell the Sergeant saw his helmet fly off with battle damage revealing a deceptively sickly face beneath and terrifying pointed teeth, with eyes no description could convey the evil held beneath. The Marine had fallen sideways into the room to the side of the corridor. Shock, and terror gave the Sergeant’s thoughts a speed boost; common sense seemed to leave him at the witnessing of this abomination. How many more Marines could there be in this small building if they hadn’t come out to greet him yet? In a feat of great bravery he yelled out a battle cry and charged toward the open doorway to the side where the injured monster lay. He could hear his comrades running after him close by. As he reached the marine he released a shogun shell into its exposed face before it could react. The shell reduced the face to a grisly pulp that was infinitely more beautiful than the despicable evil it used to represent. His senses heightened with the fray he charged forth into the room, taking the remaining two marines in the room utterly by surprise. As he slid the mechanism on the barrel of his gun back and forth spilling out the contents of his gun into the nearest Beast the Marine fell backwards under the fire. The last man holding a melta-gun ran forth into the room only to be killed under bolter fire from the other blasphemy, however the two troopers behind lobbed a grenade immobilising the monster. The Sergeant rushed forward firing at the last stunned marine. With the power rushing to his head, he felt a sudden shock when the weapon stopped firing. The beast rallied sending him flying to the ground with a quick attack using the butt of his bolter. Fortunately seeing the two other men advancing on him the hit was not enough to do any serious injury to the Sergeant. Regaining his balance as rapidly as he could he saw the last of his comrades ripped in half by a hail of exploding shells, their flak-armour unable to stop the raw power of the heretical weapon.
He rushed at the marine with no time to reload the shotgun in his hands. Hoping to catch the marine off guard using the skill of a hardened fighter unusual in the guard, he managed to hit the Space Marine over the top of the head. Unfortunately the marine just laughed, barrelling him off his feet once more. The beast could have easily killed him, but instead seemed to be taking his time for whatever twisted pleasure it gave him. As the Sergeant lay on the rubble struggling to get up, trying in vain to conquer the burning pain in his body, the Marine stood over him aiming the bolter slowly at his head. All of a sudden a black haze charged into the Evil above him, and the embodiment of Chaos fell to the ground once again seeming surprised. A new Marine stood in his place, his armour black behind its grim decoration of skulls and fire. Seemingly an aspect of death itself, the Black Marine walked over to where the Chaos Marine was rising. With a supernatural speed, and a skill that showed the years of practice, the Chaos Marine swung his bolter in an arc towards the Newcomers’ head. Somehow the Black Marine managed to put up an hand and with a feat of unthinkable strength and an almighty crash of ceramite on ceramite grabbed the wrist of the Chaos Marines arm mid strike, while a the same time the bolter in his other hand firing into the chest of his assailant. The armour cracked immediately under the point blank bolt rounds, not even the crude symbols protecting it now, and let out a below of defeat as it fell to the ground.
The Sergeant had managed to get to his feet and stagger painfully towards the door, when all hell broke loose. Black and Red Storm troopers had suddenly managed to get this far, and the burst into the room. Relief flushed into his mind as he headed in their direction. A strange man behind them shouted, “We’ve cornered him, Fire!” Each of the Storm Troopers fired conscious of the staggering veteran in front of the target, but just managing to miss him. None of them wanted to kill a member of their side, but if the target got away none of them wanted to face the wrath of the man behind them either. The Sergeant still running between the cracking hell gun pulses trying to get to safety staggered as his leg gave way from previous injuries. A surge of red light from one of the Storm Troopers hit him in his shoulder spinning him round. As he span it seemed like an eternity as he looked at the red-eyed behemoth behind him. It armour told the tale of time, the flame and skull logos scratched and damaged from previous encounters. Its posture seemed to tell of sadness and death in a way that only those with heightened awareness would be able to tell. Then in a fizzle of light it was gone, and the Sergeant continued his motion into the path of the hell guns. The first impact was to his side then the back of his shoulder before one hit him in the back of his head decimating his skull ending his life.
The strange man cursed under his breath. It had seemed to good to be true cornering a lone Fire Hawk. He sincerely hoped they had left another body on the battlefield for him to examine.
The Storm Troopers moved out with a bitter taste in their mouths. It was one thing shooting at unknown allies with unknown motives but another all together gunning down an Imperial trooper. Still they knew better than to question their master's methods.
Any comments welcome good or bad. I hope you enjoy it as I have.
Last edited by Sam51; July 10th, 2008 at 19:33.
Wow. that was really enjoyable. Its a shame all the droptroopers died, but that Fire hawk was pretty sweet. Its about time somebody wrote some fluff with them in it.
Is it a coincidence that I got counter-terrorism ads at the bottom of the page?!?;?
Anyways, I haven't had the chance to read the whole thing yet, but what I did read I thought was quite good. You set the scene well and kept the reader (in this case, me) interested from the word go.
A couple of changes here. The first (and most important) is to make those paragraphs smaller and more bountiful. At the moment, I'm finding them rather heavy to read, which in turn raises the bar to keep me interested which can leech some enjoyment from the story like a Vampire sucking on a relative (sorry about the simile there). Your last three paragraphs are good, try make teh rest of them a similar size.
Second one is more trivial than anything else. I'd ask a Mod to change the title. What you have is "Librarium Online online fluff entry".
ED: I got a bit nervous when I saw the title: "Deus ex machina". That is one technique I can't stand writers using, but hey, don't mind me.
I thought the plot was a little vague and hard to follow at times (I had to read some parts twice) so maybe clarifying what's happening may be a wise decision.
Finally, you have almost 200 words spare, I'd use that to work on imagery. Describe the building a bit more, what time of day is it? how can you show it? etc.
Hope this helps.
Last edited by ArchonFarseerGuy; June 2nd, 2008 at 07:11.
Sorry havn't replied in so long lost connection to the internet.
Thanks people, I am glad you found some goodness in it
Very helpful suggestions I shall edit it soon.
I too am not fond of the Deus ex Machina and suprised myself but I didn't think it was too extreme in this story and tried to use it to include more with less words.This shall be very helpful thank-you very muchFinally, you have almost 200 words spare, I'd use that to work on imagery. Describe the building a bit more, what time of day is it? how can you show it? etc.I think this is something I need to work on if I try anything like this again.I thought the plot was a little vague and hard to follow at times (I had to read some parts twice) so maybe clarifying what's happening may be a wise decision.This was the reaction hoped forWow. that was really enjoyable. Its a shame all the droptroopers died, but that Fire hawk was pretty sweet. Its about time somebody wrote some fluff with them in it.