Daemons of the Blood Mist - Warhammer 40K Fantasy
 

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  1. #1
    Senior Member sonofslaanesh's Avatar
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    Daemons of the Blood Mist

    "So, have you heard the rumors?" Johan said in a thick Nordland accent. He wasn't from around here, but like most of the soldiers garrisoned at little fort, he'd served around the entire Empire. "About what?" replied Ostner, eager to here anything to divert his attention from sentry duty.
    "Well," began Johan, "the hearings around the mess tent are about why we're all stuck here protecting this backwater village this far north."

    He paused, looking shiftily as if watching to see if anyone was near. It was a fact that in the months after Archaon's defeat the men had been anxious and on edge, and when they were told to march to a small village on the edge of Troll Country they all expected action. However, they were disappointed when nothing had happened. "Men here talk of daemons in the fog, old superstitions and tales from other villages," Johan said in a matter-of-fact manner, "The people of the village tell hushed tales in the tavern. Old stories, stories from the First War, from when Arbaal went through this area. They say the land hasn't been right since."

    Ostner inhaled deeply, the air around them seeming chillier than normal and stinging his throat as he breathed. He exhaled and looked out, seeing the area was dark and gloomy as usual, with the characteristic fog of the late night. Shuddering with cold Ostner said "What about it? Do they know why we're here?" A glint of light sparked in Johan's eyes, he loved telling stories, especially if they were fantastic. "They tell of the monsters Arbaal sent to this land, great beasts from the far north, terrible things with horns and fangs and a taste for the flesh of men. The townsfolk were talking about their leader, a terrible monster.."Johan trailed off, again looking around, "a servant of the Ruinous Powers, the Butcher God."

    At the mention of the Dark Gods an ominous wind cut through the two guards and the fog seemed to close in a little bit more, though the men thought nothing of it. "He was a giant beast, they say, two heads above the tallest men in the village, with great fangs and and claws, and clad in black armor which seemed to steal the very light from the air around it," Johan continued taking note of the plain fear on Ostner's face.

    "Before he attacked a city with his host the walls would be surrounded by a red mist, said to be the blood of all those sacrificed to his dark master. Out of the mist they charged, taking the disoriented defenders in surprise and slaughtering them, only to sink back into the blood mist when reinforcements arrived." Ostner was breathing heavily and hanging to every one of Johan's words with the anticipation of a child.

    "Of course, it's only a story." laughed Johan, the deep chuckle breaking the quiet surrounding them. Then they noticed it was too quiet. No birds or animals around, no wind, not even a cry from a village child. The fog had closed in and there was a strange scent in the air, a coppery tang, the surrounding area was red with early morning sun. But it wasn't yet midnight.

    The guards jumped to attention, "So, is this why we've been brought up here?" shouted Ostner, panic in his voice. "Yeah, I heard a few villages were burnt to the ground, so they sent us up to see if it was some old followers of Archaon making their way back nor..." Johan trailed off. Ostner looked over and saw his comrade's body slump to the ground, the head in the grip of a giant red beast. The monster howled to the dark, now moonless sky, and his brothers came out from the mist, first dark shadows and then terrible creatures of horror. Ostner began to scream but his cry would cease, as would the life of the small village. Victims of the Blood Mist.

    C&C welcome, and sorry about the spaces, but I needed to put in paragraph breaks

    Last edited by sonofslaanesh; December 31st, 2006 at 05:24. Reason: no indents
    Pain is life, while I feel pain I still live, and while I still live I will seek vengance.
    We are few but strong in will
    The last with pagan blood
    We fought the world with burning steel
    Now we sit in Hall of Gods


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  3. #2
    /botnobot/ DavidWC09's Avatar
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    Well-written! Thanks for posting, I enjoyed reading it.
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  4. #3
    Senior Member sonofslaanesh's Avatar
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    part two, from the other side

    The old beast sat down on his makeshift throne of bones and rusty weapons, his place of honor as the oldest and most favored by the gods. His horns were long and the hair growing from under his goat-like maw was grey and braided, many skulls hanging in the blood and gore matted fur. A fire crackled in front of him, giving light to the surrounding area and making him seem even more fierce. Before him the younglings of the tribe had gathered to here his legends and wisdom from his decades of life.

    "There have been many great warriors of the Four Winds from our tribe," he began, his low and gutteral tone rasping like daggers on chainmail, "Some have served Onogal, the Plague Wind, who purges the weak, others Tchor, the Wind of Change who brings us divine favor, or the young Shornaal, who rouses the passions," the old beast said, a smile of crooked fangs spreading across his muzzle as he remembered past glories. "But none have been as revered among us as the few who took up the call of the Blood Wind, Arkhar!" the young beasts grunted and howled at the name of their patron god.

    "The band of the I'Azyr Aqshyash are our most revered brethren, for they have achieved what only few of our race have..." he paused, gazing into the flames, "...daemonhood." At this the beasts began chattering and roaring in low tones, their souls fired and anxious to hear the tale.

    "The Great Horned One, the leader of our tribe many, many winters ago, answered the call of the Blood Wind when the champion of Men named Arbaal came through our land," the beast-lord's voice grew louder as the tale unfolded. "He too was a servant of the Skulltaker, and together they burnt many villages and reclaimed several sacred places and herdstones." The tales of their exploits were well known to the listening monsters, yet they still remained at rapt attention as if hypnotized by their chief's words.

    "It was the Horned One, with fur as black as the Dark and a mane of fiery red, who was most beloved and favored by the Blood Wind. In its name the Horned One captured whole cities and villages, then on the eve of Kharek letting their blood flow in a torrent to please his master." The assembled creatures roared in approval of this awesome act of devotion to the Great Winds. "Then, at the very break of dawn the warhost of the Horned One spotted a great number of Men, so many that the fires of their encampment could not be counted by any of the Host. Knowing that his force was small, numbering only 888, the Horned One was sceptical to attack in fear of disgracing the Blood Wind with a defeat," the old one paused to breath as the beasts growled their disapproval.

    "But then!" the chieftain exploded into action, bolting up to terrible height and reaching upward to the sky as his tale came to climax. "The rivers of blood spilled in honor of the Red Wind lifted up and surrounded the warhost in a mist, changing them and blessing them with cover in which to attack the Men of the south. Out of the mist the Horned One came, a whirlwind of destruction and torment, breaking horse and slaying rider in one blow, casting bodies lengths away, and then dashing back into the Blood Wind's protection." Roars and howls which could have been cheers rose in a great commotion from the number assembled.

    "It was as the last of the manlings were slain that the building of the Herdstone of Arkhar began. Set on a great mound of bodies in the middle of the pool of blood and effluence spilled in the battle, the Horned One erected a great shrine in the name of his master, covering it with the skulls of every man killed on that field." Silence, the beasts were in awe of their fabled hero's deed. "Then, the Blood Wind blessed the Horned One and his host with the most coveted reward, Arkhar made the beasts his own servants, no longer fur and fang but war incarnate, Fangs of the Gods, and to the Horned One he granted the Blood Mist, for his daemon-beast to live in forever and for him to use for the glory of the Blood Wind."

    possibly more to come later, I like this take on beastmen, making them a little more intelligent (at least to other beastmen) and more tribal. c&c welcome.
    Pain is life, while I feel pain I still live, and while I still live I will seek vengance.
    We are few but strong in will
    The last with pagan blood
    We fought the world with burning steel
    Now we sit in Hall of Gods


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