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‘Chief Magister, a humble word with you, if I may?’
A tiny voice rose above the din of the bustling courtyard, catching Magister Fessek’s attention. Fessek sighed audibly, making no effort to hide his annoyance. He motioned the man he was currently addressing to leave his presence and turned to face the meek servant that demanded his attention.
‘Make it quick. I’m busy.’ Fessek had a sharp, condescending tone to his voice, common amongst those that often dealt with people believed to be of a lower station than them. As Chief Magister, Fessek’s job was to ensure the masses of peasants that hadn’t been properly educated in the lore of Holy Terra and the Everlasting Emperor of Mankind were enlightened to their glory. Though Fessek loved both dearly, he tired of preaching to barbarians that barely understood the concepts of fire or the wheel, let alone their utter insignificance compared to The Emperor. His patience had worn thin and frayed many months ago, as had the leather of many ‘conditioning straps’ in his possession. Teaching could be so physical sometimes.
The man interrupting the conversation was small and hunched over. He wore thick, crimson robes to hide his body, but his face showed the tell-tale scars of a burn victim. His left arm hung useless at his side, cybernetic replacements a luxury beyond the means of the peasants and scum of this hunk of rock. Fessek didn’t know the man’s name, having never bothered to learn it, nor did he particularly care.
‘The Imperial Battleship ‘Indignant Wrath’ has sent a message to you via astropath. Priority Urgent Alpha. I have taken the liberty of bringing you the message personally, so you did not have to wait, your excellence.’
The servant handed up a data-slate to Fessek and took a few steps back in contrition, head bowed low. Fessek snatched the data-slate and looked down at it. For many long moments, Fessek did not move. His one original eye darted left and right like a beast trying to escape a cage.
Finally, after what seemed like ages, the corner of Fessek’s mouth turned up in what could be considered a smile. His good eye glanced up at the servant quickly before viewing the data-slate again. ‘Did you read all of this, servant?’ he inquired, his voice little above a whisper.
The servant seemed perplexed. ‘… Why, yes, Lordship… It was necess –‘ The servant’s reply was cut short by a moist thud. Split seconds later a loud explosion erupted from his head. Gore sprayed across the courtyard as the cripple fell to the ground in a heap. Peasants all around stopped what they were doing, only to resume their tedious tasks once they realized the murderer’s identity. Each peasant looked away as if nothing had happened, lest they suffer a similar fate. Beneath his robes, Fessek holstered his antique Bolt Pistol from many centuries ago, the mechanical tendons and ligaments in his wrist and arm easily countering for the recoil of the brutal weapon. His robes were damaged now, but Fessek hardly cared.
Swiftly turning on his heel, Fessek stalked towards the school yard, a servitor coming up from behind. ‘I will be leaving in three days time,’ he told to mechanical slave. He thrust the data-slate into one of the many limbs of the automaton. ‘Prepare my belongings, and cancel all appointments I have scheduled. Send word to Tyral on Terra. Use the following astropath, and send him only one word – Isis.’
In the relatively quiet region of space known as the Dominion of Storms, an anomaly appears upon the star charts. On the planet of Corinthe, plant life dies off as the skies grow dark. The inhabitants are at a loss to explain the phenomenon, but are filled with fear and dread. Riots break out, and the Imperial Guard is dispatched to quiet and control the rebelling population.
En route, an Imperial Navy Fleet spots the disturbance – a giant planet has appeared in empty space. Its presence blocks the planet of Corinthe from their star, plunging them into eternal nightfall. A frigate is detached from the fleet to scout the disturbance. Upon arrival, they find that they are not the only ones interested in the planet. Fighting has already broke out, as brutish Orks and malevolent Chaos Marines battle for position in orbit. Before contact is lost, the frigate reports that the planet whispers to them, urging them to make planet fall as soon as possible.
Abandoning Corinthe, the Imperial Navy calls for reinforcements and makes full speed for the new planet, dubbed ‘Spectre.’ Several companies of Astartes, the Angels of Death, are called upon as well, for the foul presence of Chaos demands their attention.
All across the galaxy, a silent Battle Cry has been sounded. Orks, Eldar, Tau, and Humans alike are drawn to the planet and its mysteries. Only death awaits those that dare heed the siren’s call, but the treasures promised are infinite.
On the planet’s surface, a bone white head rises above the tall, jungle thick vegetation. It hisses at the sky with hatred, purple eyes glaring at those who already do battle in orbit. After a moment the head disappears once again into foliage, into the darkness, to wait…
(Author's note - Yes, this is the correct forum.)
I don't know if we're supposed to post here, but uh, is this gonna be a Vassal Campaign? Or is this a log of something that you're running with your club mates?
... only triumph could turn pooing his pants into a good thing..
Also, courtesy of our graphical artist Anduscaissus...
Anyway, this looks to be really awesome. I can't wait to do some serious purging this time around.
On the desk, an ink pot wobbled and threatened to spill over as his cabin shook. The walls of the 'Indignant Wrath' groaned with pain as another Lance Battery struck her hull, sending vibrations down the length of the ancient space craft. Fessek sighed and put his documents away. Where most people would resort to a data-slate, Fessek found writing with the archaic pen and paper to be relaxing. Unfortunately, there was to be no relaxing when the 'Indignant Wrath' was under fire.
Fessek left his cabin and strode down the bustling hallways towards the bridge. Ship crew gave way to the imposing figure even as they rushed towards battle positions. He paid them little heed, much like a shark ignores the smaller fish in the ocean. Fessek had blood on his mind.
A few minutes later he arrived at the bridge of the battleship. The Naval guards paid him no heed, and Fessek approached Captain Glaren, affectionately known as 'Captain Glory' by his staff. Glaren was an aging man and should have retired long ago. Rumour had it that Captain Glaren refused to ever leave his position as a Captain, and would die in a blazing inferno before ever retiring. More vicious rumours stated that dying in battle was exactly what Glaren was seeking.
'We're under fire,' remarked the Captain in a grizzled and tired voice as Fessek took up a spot standing next to the Captain's chair. 'Orks. Straggler vessels, mostly. They're of no real threat to us.' Glaren almost sounded dissapointed.
'How soon until we arrive at the planet?'
'Soon. 30 hours or so, depending on how heavy of resistence we meet.'
Fessek turned on his heel and started towards the exit. 'Inform me before we arrive. I want no mistakes in this, Captain.' His voice was hard as steel and his face hard as a rock.
Glaren, however, was unintimated, but still retained his respectful tone. 'Aye, Lord. And Inquisitor, if I may be so bold?' Glaren's question stopped Fessek momentarily. 'Does anyone know what's so damned important about this ghost planet?'
The Inquisitor took a moment before responding. 'Captain, it is not the planet that is important. It can burn for all I care. It is what happens to be on the planet which is important. Redemption.'
Fessek had been an Inquisitor for the Ordo Malleus for a very long time. Very nearly 400 years ago, he had given his life over to the Ordo in order to protect the Imperium from the threat of Chaos taint and corruption. Never once had he regretted his decision. Serving the Imperium was the only choice any human had in this universe, and to be able to do so in such a powerful way was a chance Fessek could not pass up.
For centuries Fessek hunted down the most despicable creatures, horrors, and monstrosities known to man. He had faced down beings spawned from man's worst nightmares. He once stood in the presence of a dread Fallen Astartes and survived. Even thinking of that encounter stil gave Fessek shivers in his mechanical spine.
Even with all of his exploits, one failure haunted Fessek more than anything he had witnessed. Isis. So horrible was the story of Isis that Fessek had all records of it purged. Anyone who knew of it was summarily executed for Crimes Against the Imperium. To this date, only two people knew the story of Isis; Fessek, and Tyral, his most trusted bodyguard and confidant, and the only other person than Fessek to survive the Isis incident. Afterwards, Fessek retired himself from the Ordo Malleus to teach Imperium Doctrine to the barbarians of culturally inept worlds. It was a self-imposed penance that Fessek hated, but bore in the hope that one day he could make up for his hidden disgrace.
Now, it seemed as his last chance was upon him.
Above the planet of 'Spectre', the fighting intensified. More warships arrived to investigate the anamoly, each eager to please the soft, seductive voice that whispered promises to the soul. Not even a moment of respite was not to be found, and those who arrived found themselves with no choice but to die in space, or make planetfall.
On the planet, commanders found a overgrown, yet mostly intact, civilization. Archaic yet powerful devices littered the landscape, and generals quickly escalated into battles for possession of territory. Those that arrived early found themselves in a position to dominate the most land, and had the upper hand against those who were newly arriving. Yet, as the empire grows, so does the challenge of protecting it, and resources are limited with constant warfare in the stars above.
Through it all, the voice whispered to each of their souls, promising to any and everyone the most powerful of artifacts, the power to achieve any wish, or piles of shiney objects. Some had the power to resist the lure, but for how long?
Author's Note -
The 'Campaign' thread is now up, so punted this thread over to Fluff where it belongs. Find the League rules and sign up to battle for Spectre here -
http://www.librarium-online.com/foru...0k-league.html (The Librarium Online 40K League.)
isn't "Isis" a planet in star wars? seriously I think it is, or was it a species? whatever...
Create flames for a galaxy and it will be warm. Put a galaxy in flames and it will be warm for the rest of it's existence.
Isis is also an Egyption god IIRC. Althought it matters little.
... only triumph could turn pooing his pants into a good thing..
(Author's note - picking up the fluff when migrating from League games to Vogen Campaign.)
It had been a grueling seven weeks of nothing but constant warfare and bloodshed. Almost immediately upon landing upon the ghost planet, dubbed ‘Spectre’, Imperial forces were besieged from all sides. Aliens of all kinds threw themselves with abandon against the guns of the landing drop ships. Crazed Orks screamed nonsense while hacking fruitlessly against ceramite hulls of armoured transports while traitorous Imperials rained ballistic death upon both alien and Loyalist alike.
But worse was vicious Tyranid attacks. Multi-limbed monstrosities came at them in waves, tearing limbs from bodies and snapping heads with ease. Had it not been for Inquisitor Fessek’s presence, the Imperial Guard would’ve lost their resolve and broken for orbit right then. Eventually the Loyalists were able to set up a perimeter using their drop ships and automated turrets, and with enough time, set up their command base and planned their counter-attack.
From that point, the defenders became the attackers, and systematically attacked each pocket of resistance they could root out. With calm, trained discipline tempered by the presence of an Imperial Inquisitor, the Guard were a force to be reckoned with. Each day new reinforcements came to bolster their forces, until the humans on the planet outnumbered all of the aliens combined. With the Imperial Guard sweeping across the planet’s surface like a tidal wave, invaders were driven from the planet in the name of the Emperor. Eldar wraithbone disintegrated to battle cannons, Tyranid blood was spilt by lasgun, and Tau technology was broken by Lascannon. Imperial might was soon to be the only force left on Spectre, and it was all thanks to the work of Fessek and the Imperial Guard under his command.
Of course, nothing is ever that easy in reality, and the truth soon became clear. The Ghost Planet had a name.
It was a Junior Officer, barely promoted, that made the discovery of the city. It was definitely Imperial and mostly intact. Fessek recognized it nearly immediately, and named it ‘Vogen’. Word quickly spread through the ranks and the planet was identified as Khai-Zhann, a world that had vanished mysteriously into the warp almost a century ago. 10 billion imperial lives, all gone in an instant, with no reason given as to why.
Immediately Fessek ordered a strike team of the most skilled scouts to infiltrate the city for search for life signs. Within 15 minutes, the scouts had reached the wall. Regular reports came over the vox-comm system, which Fessek listened to eagerly.
“Mark at western wall. Scaling ropes deployed. ETA on climb, 20 seconds... Ten. Five. Four. Three. Two. One. Scout team insi-“
Across the planet, a single voice blotted out the thoughts of every living, sentient creature. It spoke directly into their minds, speaking to them with a malevolence that would shatter souls.
Every member of the platoon stood stunned, a blank impression upon their faces. Silence enveloped the base camp as each man looked to the man next to him, searching for non-existent answers. Some looked to Fessek for leadership, but even he had none to offer.
The silence was broken by a low, growing rumbling from the city, as if it had suddenly woken from a century long sleep. The vox-communicator roared to life as the voice of the sergeant of the infiltrating squad came across. The unmistakable crack of hellgun and autogun fire accompanied the voice. In the background, screams of men and women dying nearly drowned out the transmission.
“Contact! Definite life signs! Hund…Thous… the city is alive! Citizens from all angles! Attempting to bre-“ The vox cut out at that point, but the sounds of battle from the city quickly died down. The veterans had been disposed of; the city had rejected them.In the recesses of the city, beneath the street level, the Chirurgeon performed his craft upon the only volunteer that still lived. Shadows moved all around the room, just out of eyesight, circling the macabre cutting table that he worked diligently upon. A single lamp illuminated from above, shedding light upon the patient, a fallen Astartes. His purple and golden armour, meticulously cared for over centuries of constant warfare, lay diligently stacked in a corner. An elegant bolter displaying the eight pointed star of Chaos rested up against the armour, ready to deliver death for anyone that could wield the ubiquitous weapon.*********
On the other side of the table from the Chirurgeon, an Imperial data console flickered and flashed. Chaotic images and icons marked the console, defiling the Imperial Machine Spirit within and twisting its purpose to something far more sinister. Wires coiled away from the console and connected to the remains of an red and black, barely humanoid head perched upon a tiny table.
The surgeon looked up from his work, scowled at the flashing images upon the console, and turned to a storage locker behind him. The door opened with a creak and the Chirurgeon produced a heart that was not quite human. All across the room and inaudible hiss echoed just outside the realm of human hearing. The Chirurgeon simply ignored them and returned to his work.
Above, the city rumbled as the veterans were assaulted. “Soon, my pet. They come soon. Yes, soon. Little time, little help, little life. Life gives, life goes. Life from me to you. Soon, yes.” In the darkness, the Chirurgeon muttered to himself while toiling away upon his project.**********
Two weeks later, the assault upon Vogen had officially begun. However, the Guard were no longer at full force. Nearly half of the men turned on their commanders, declaring themselves free of the shackles of Imperial Law. Those that didn’t immediately join their damned cause were cut down in the name of twisted daemons. The very unlucky ones became the play things for vicious traitor Astartes bands that still roamed the planet surface.
After Fessek assembled what was left of his still loyal Guardsmen, he realized he had no choice but to seek help. Demanding aid from any and all Imperial forces still present on Khai-Zhann, Fessek enlisted battle companies of the Flesh Tearers, Salamanders, and Space Wolves Astartes chapters. To be in the presence of just one company of Astartes was a lifetime achievement, but to be present for a gathering of three different chapters was nearly unheard of.
Like a fist the Imperial forces smashed through Vogen’s western defenses. Bolter fire drove the crazed citizens back. Thousands died that day to Imperial guns, and as a testament to their prowess, not a single Astartes fell. With single minded precision, the entire western section of the city belonged to Imperial forces.
However, the citizens were not their only competition for the city. Capitalizing on the mass defection, a hasty truce was made amongst all the traitor Astartes on the planet. Night Lords put aside their differences with Thousand Sons, and Iron Warriors agreed to stay their guns. Most peculiar of all, the last Ork tribe on Vogen even accepted to halt their aggressions, claiming “… smooth tin cans o’ spikey tin cans. Both good fightin’s, but da spikeyz hurts da boyz more.”
The first real fight came from the Flesh Tearers. Sweeping through the city, massacring all before them without mercy, they happened upon some of the last remaining police forces of Vogen. Much better equipped than the paltry citizens that roamed the streets and ambushed the attackers from all angles, the Arbites fought back with cunning and viciousness bred by a century of corruption. Sentinels and modified chimeras blazed away with autocannons and lascannons at the Astartes. But the Flesh Tearers were bred for one thing only – war. Heedless of their brethren being gunned down, assault troops armed with jump packs descended upon the gathered Arbites and routed them from their base. Chimeras were ripped by hand apart by crazed, power armoured gods, while damned humans were gunned down with explosive bolts when they turned to flee. While many Arbites died to the Flesh Tearers, many more still escaped and vanished into the city.
On the eastern side of the city, the forces of Chaos moved to capture as much territory as possible. The Iron Warriors, never known for their subtlety, blew open Harrikon’s Gate with a massive orbital bombardment, then drove phalanxes of heavy tanks. Land Raiders, Predators, Rhinos, and Defilers drove uncontested into the city. Meanwhile, the Night Lords made a quick move to secure the largest building in the city – the Palace of Peace. Finding it unguarded, the Night Lords quickly fortified it and turned it into a veritable bastion, brimming with automated turrets and skulking warriors carrying heavy weapons.
It would not be long before full scale war erupted inside the city. Time was a precious commodity, and it was quickly running out.“Time, no time, no time!” muttered the Chirurgeon to nobody in particular. “Not finished my pet, but no time. Time says you… wait, what?” He cocked his head to one side, as if listening to someone speaking. A moment passed, and his eyes went back to the Astartes on the table. “Time to wake, my pet. Time to wake. Good-bye and hello!”*******
The Chirurgeon walked over to the data console and started hitting a sequence of buttons. There was a sudden flurry of movement from the shadows, and beady red eyes glared back at the crazed surgeon. Dozens of them looked at him with malevolence and hatred, but one by one the blinked out until only the Chirurgeon was left in the room. He held his breathe and stopped moving, leaving himself in the silence. Above, he could faintly make out the heavy boot steps of those that dared trespass upon his workspace. They thought they were safe, up there. The trespassers were more interested in expanding their control of the city and dealing with their enemies that they would never expect an attack from below. How wrong they would be.
Looking around quickly to ensure that he was truly alone, the Chirurgeon disconnected the probes that attached the wires from the console to the head that rested nearby. As he did, an inhuman cry echoed throughout the halls of the shelter his laboratory resided in. “Time… no time now.” Working quickly, he uncoiled the wires and pulled them over to the operating table. Looking down at his pet with love and admiration, the Chirurgeon jammed them through the skull of the Astartes on the table, into his soft brain. Skittering footsteps clammered all around him. Quickly throwing himself at the data console, the Chirurgeon slammed his hand onto a single button. On the ground, a smile crossed his maddened face as muscular, monstrous creatures descended upon him and dragged him into the darkness to his death.
On the data console, one screen continued to display messages, though nobody was reading them anymore.
Ready for process.
Confirmation received. Beginning process…process in progress.
Revival of subject in 60 standard Terra minutes.