"Sometimes I can't see a bloody thing with this helmet on. Your reports have been well received. These fortifications are obviously meant to bottle-neck our little party."
Yngvar scans the surroundings, his face slack. Still, in cover he makes certain his bolt pistol is loaded with kraken rounds. He knows Ice Splitter by the feel of the weight it adds to his armor.
"We must get out of this blasted canyon. Each of us must get up to the top of the canyon wall. From there we will proceed west to the tower. The north flank will be Sarlock, Shah, Pax and Gunter. Rustin and I will proceed along the southern flank. Find cover before as much as possible before entering the facility proper and we will regroup if possible. Questions?"
Hearing no protests or questions, Yngvar approaches Rustin, feathering the jump pack's throttle open and closed in rapid succession to warm up the turbines.
"Time to fly, mate."
[Jeff, I assume you will create a reason in your next IC update for Yngvar having failed to complete the jump.]
Yngvar opens and closes the burners on his jump pack, the red hot glow turning white, fueled by his armor's ancient yet advanced power pack. The silence of the night is split by the high pitch whine of the engines and the darkness broken by the pin points of light they make.
He grabs Rustin under the arm pits, surprisingly gentle for such a massive being. The hold is reminiscent of a mother wolf cradling her pups, keeping them held close while not causing any damage. Rustin cradles his las-carbine against his chest, ready to bring it to bear on a foe mid-flight if the situation calls for it. He braces himself for take off while never once losing his tell tale grin.
Yngvar guns the engines with the smallest twitch of his finger. He gets about 3m into the air, starting to rise to make the cliff face when the weight of Rustin - or perhaps the lack of weight he was expecting - causes his finger to twitch in the wrong way. The engine cuts off immediately sending both the Space Wolf and his human cargo into a spin towards the cliff face. Yngvar tries desperately to turn himself so that the damage from the collision will be negated as much as possible, but cannot seem to get his giant armored body positioned correctly. He and Rustin crash with the loud metallic clang of ceramite against rock. Both lie prone at the bottom of the Southern cliff, a small cloud of dust settling around them.
For a few seconds there is a stillness and the Marines who had moved off to scale the cliffs scan their surroundings, knowing that if someone was listening they sure would have heard and noticed Yngvar's crash. Gunter and Aisha make it easily up the Northern cliff face, not so much as having a bad hand placement as they ascended the 12m rock face. Sarlock attempts to replicate their success, but the bulk of his mighty weapon make climbing an almost impossible task. With a small shift in weight, the Iron hand loses his grip and falls a meter and a half backwards, landing prone on his back.
Grox-shites have yet to check in, they're 45 minutes late, he thought as a very familiar looking vehicle rolled into the canyon mouth. He almost couldn't see it due to its lack of lights and the cloud cover, but the barest wink of moonlight broke through and that was all he needed. He hefted the scope up to his eye and got a nice view of what was taking place down in the canyon below. The infrared sight of his weapon showed him all of them in their imposing armor.
Space Marines. The False Emperor's scourge.
He grit his teeth as one of them crested the cliff face below him and then another. He lined up his sights on the first - a black armored monstrosity that he would see sent to the warp. Seeing a "soft spot" in the Marine's armor, he gently squeezes the trigger.
A bright beam of energy burns through the night, slamming into Aisha with the force of foul sorcery and the taint of a weapon enhanced by the ruinous powers. The las-beam burns through a small area without a ceramite overlap, eating through plasteel and singing across adamantine until it finds the flesh beneath. Blood loss is minimal due to cauterization but the impact nearly knocked the wind out of the Daughter of Death, forcing her third lung to kick in and level out her oxygen displacement.
Start of Initiative
Rolling over to his side, a drawn out gasp escapes Rustin's mouth as his lungs slowly find oxygen again. With his best exaggerated impression of Yngvar, Rustin sarcastically grunts out the words. "Toime to fly..."
Pushing himself up from the ground, Rustin quickly takes a knee and tucks the stock of his Lascarbine into his shoulder. Peering through the weapon's scope, he quickly scans his surroundings, searching for any immediate threats.
The blast of laser energy only surprises Gunter in that it targets Aisha instead of himself. With the incredible seeming insticts of a Space Marine he considers a half dozen responses, from staying with Aisha and pulling her to cover to opening up on the sniper with his bolter, but just as quickly he discards those options. Instead he charges forward pulling his force sword as he approaches. Gunter may not have a ranged weapon as powerful as a las cannon, but he doubts that the chaos filth has a melee weapon that offers any hope of overcoming Gunter's ancient and many times blessed cermite armor.
Breaking radio silence Gunter announces, "Contact with enemy made. Only one confirmed target, anticipate more under cover. Moving to engage in melee."
Yngvar, his pride stinging much more than any physical ailment due to the weak fall, flutters the thrust of his jump pack to help him back onto his crouching trunk-like legs. In a swift motion he seems to glide from the canyon floor to a crouching position.
"I am again 'minded that you ain't no Space Marine." He says using the Low Gothic equivalent of his native Fenrisian. "You have my condolences on that account and apologies for the tumble. The All-Father smiles upon even the blunders of his children. My orders stand. We must make it to higher ground." Yngvar opens the throttle of his jump pack once again, delaying only briefly in the expectation that Rustin will make some other half-cocked attempt at furthering his human sense of humor.
"Fuck it," Rustin says with a grin and a shrug, once again standing in a position to allow the head and a half taller Space Wolf pick him up as he would a babe. This time he has the weight distribution figured and wouldn't dare repeat the same mistake as earlier. On wings of fire, Yngvar burns upwards and comes to a smashing halt at the top of the Southern plateau. He sets Rustin down easily enough and the two now occupy the high ground alone.
The shot felt like a punch from a terminator, and the pain had blossomed behind her eyes for a moment before her enhanced physique overcame and dampened the sensation. Knowing she would still be within the sniper's scope she looks for cover and quickly rushes to a small gathering of boulders just behind her. The Astartes in her demands she charge toward the enemy, but the Apothecary in her knows that she is the lifeline of her team and ensuring her safety is ensuring theirs. The rocks cover everything except the top of her head and allows her the opportunity to better check the damage to her armor and body.
The readout on her HUD informs her that the atmospheric seal inside of her Mk. VIII suit had been pierced by an extremely well placed and potent shot from the las. The shot was so good, a lower life form would attribute it to blind luck, but Aisha knew better. She knew the Ruinous Powers had given their "blessing" to whatever had done this and the cursed beam had thus torn into her.
Rustin hugs Sexy Sadie's stock tight into his shoulder as he hits the ground with a surprisingly gentle thud. To the North West he spots a group of four heretics pointing a rather large Heavy Stubber in Gunter's general direction. None of them seem to notice Rustin as he takes stock of the situation. For one thing, a Heavy Stubber was definitely not something the Penal Laborers should have had access to. And, for another, these boys weren't wearing explosive discipline collars.
"Toime to show these fecker the folly o' their ways, ey boyo?" He says to Yngvar before shouldering his lascarbine and unleashing three tight shots. The first and second beams crashes straight into the stubber operator's right temple, blowing his eye balls out in a super heated pop, leaving a trail of boiling brains oozing out in their place. As he tumbles to the ground, Rustin's third shot hits one of the ammunition loaders directly in the chest. The beam burns through his armor and the punch of it knocks the air from him and brings the taste of blood to his mouth. The others turn their heads at the source of this new attack.
Pax gets eyes on the sniper who fired on Aisha and swiftly pulls his Sniper Rifle from its mag-lock on his back. Standing as still as a statue, he develops a sight picture on the small outline of the sniper's head and shoulders, waiting patiently to get the perfect shot...
... The sniper scans for targets, seeing the one he fired on before take cover and the one with her run to his position. He took no worry to the one who charged him with the sword. He was 9m up on a boulder and that one didn't look like it had one of those flying packs the other one did. So, he continued to scan. Moving his scope across the Tauros he saw a rather large Astartes with a large mechanical arm coming out of his back aiming a weapon right back at him.
Fuck! Firing first was the name of the game and he did just that. The weapon jumped ever so slightly as the reddish-blue beam of energy burst forth, charged by the ruinous powers themselves. The shot was aimed at the Astartes' head, but his super human reflexes proved good enough to get him out of the way of the worst of the shot. He wasn't fast enough, however as the beam connected solidly with his right arm, melting through plastell and flesh alike. The intense pain was only nulled by the wave of chemicals flooding Pax's bloodstream.
Another shot like that and he might be dining with the Emperor tonight.
Action Economy is on Sarlock
Upon standing quickly, Sarlock scans the area for any other threats that might creep up on the kill team. He isn't disappointed and finds a few more targets once he can get into position.
"Got eyes on 20 or so chaos soldiers. Nothing like those collared scum before, these are real soldiers." He transmits over the team frequency. Sarlock moves over to the west, trying to find cover from the teams he sees.
"Another heavy team setting up to the northwest. I'd say don't underestimate them, but from the sound of it, it seems like we already have." He brings his heavy bolter up to the ready, hoping these chaos-loving freaks stay in position to accept his gifts.
The heavy weapons team Rustin engaged takes action as one of the ammo loaders jumps on the gun and the remaining two turn to fire on Rustin and Yngvar. The new gunner doesn't waste the opportunity; knowing he cannot move the heavy weapon to bear on the new attackers since it is already braced on the low rock wall in front of him, he squeezes the trigger, smiling savagely as the weapon roars out at Gunter. The heavy solid rounds chew up the ground, making a trail to Gunter, but the Black Templar deftly jumps out of the way and they sail harmlessly past him.
The two remaining Chaos Soldiers turn on Yngvar and Rustin and take aim at Yngvar. Apparently the fact that Rustin was the one who had fired on them took a backseat to the imposing sight of a black power armored Space Wolf. The both fire tight groupings of three shots each - a testament to their discipline while facing one of the Emperor's chosen.
Yngvar stands tall and strong, not so much as flinching as the las beams singe the paint on his armor in a few spots. Carefully, he draws his second chainsword in his left hand and slightly moves his lead foot back a step. Staring down the cultists, he picks his target and prepares his next move.
As the heavy stubber rounds chunk into the rock around him, Gunter comes to the same conclusion as the sniper - nine meters of cliff face puts him well out of sword reach. But there was no way he could delay exterminating the filth long enough to allow him another devastating shot with his chaos-tainted weapon. Once again, action precedes conscious thought. Gunter pulls a frag grenade in one massive gauntleted hand, arms it and lobs it over the edge of the cliff. His enhanced hearing hears it bounce from his intended detonation - his timing was off by scant milliseconds. Before it bounces too far it detonates, the cultist still in the blast area.
The ancient Terran expression comes to mind, close is only good enough in horseshoes and hand grenades.
The sniper literally comes apart as the Astartes sized frag dismembers him twice - once through the concussive force of its larger than average explosive charge and twice through the high powered filament packing. As the heretic comes apart piece by bloody piece, so too does his weapon. The chaos-blessed longlas breaking into pieces where the shrapnel tears into it and bleeding in the same manner as its former wielder. In an instant, both cease to exist.
Gunter also hears secondary screams from the cliff top and two bodies falls down beside him, ragged and bloody. Apparently, more than just the sniper had made that cliff top their roost and in a ball of holy fire and steel, Gunter had made sure that it was rendered completely useless and their plans moot.
As Yngvar's low-cast gaze pierces through his enemies, even at distance, his armor clad frame is already hurtling towards the three remaining members of the heavy weapons team. The buzz of Ice Splitter starts and stops in rapid succession before it joins the steady roar of the jump pack. Now fully pinned open, the jump pack rockets the kill-team's melee specialist into near perfect proximity to two of the members of the heavy weapons team. He barely feels the resistance the first soldier's flesh provides as he literally shoulder plows into him with his jets wide open. The spotter comes apart as though hit by a train and only then does Yngvar bring Ice Splitter to bear. It mows through the muscle and sinew of the one manning the Heavy Stubber, spraying chunks of bone and sinew over the remaining living enemy and his gear. It's hard to know if the two he killed ever saw his intention to charge, but the cacophony of mechanical precision must have deafened them before their final moments.
I'm sure they hoped to use this thing on us, Yngvar thinks as he chuckles and turns to the remaining soldier. "You'd better just run yer fookin' chaos-worshippin' arse off that cliff," he snarls as he point to the ledge nearby.
Examining herself through her HUD, Aisha finds the most damaged areas and sets to work plugging holes with repair cement and spraying exposed flesh with synth skin. While checking to see if there is more bleeding she notices Pax's vitals spike. His icon flashes an angry crimson as his genehanced physique struggles to keep him functional.
She opens up the vox on a frequency that both broadcasts to the Techmarine and displays her words in High Gothic on his HUD: ++Pax get to cover, otherwise I will be sending your gene-seed back to your Chapter after the mission.++
She urges discipline and humility over haste in his actions until she can get down the cliff and tend to him. As important to a Kill Team as an Apothecary was, so too could a Techmarine be. Both of their arts ensured the survival of the Kill Team and Aisha had a feeling they would both be needed much more before this mission reached its climax.
Rustin begins a sprint to try and make up the distance Yngvar covered with his jump pack. But even at a dead sprint, it is clear he will not get to Yngvar in time to assist with the final heretic near the heavy weapon. Huffing and puffing, the human scout pushes on, hoping to get his hands on that Heavy Stubber...
Pax doesn't speak. Perhaps his wound hurts too much. More likely, he's just feeling a bit humbled. Instead, he quietly activates a "message received" response, causing a rune to flash briefly across Aisha's HUD. With little more than a low mechanical hum in approximation of a growl, Pax moves to the cover of the nearby boulder where he'll be less likely to soak up more ammunition while he applies repair cement to his holy armor.
Sarlock looks up in the direction of the enemies behind the boulder, his auto-senses supplying him with vital information as the potential actions run through his mechanical mind. No...as much as I'd like to split his head open...the angle is not right...He hefts the heavy bolter up and slips from cover, taking the only real option he has. He fires indiscriminately at the rock face, hoping that this will pin the enemies for the time being. While he can't be sure if his tactics worked, he does take some pleasure in watching his ammunition chew up the rock face in a brutal display of Imperial might.
The final Heretic closest to Yngvar raises his left middle finger in the Astartes' direction.
"I have seen horrors that would make you shit your armored britches, Space Wolf! Chaotica Sempre!" He screams and charges Yngvar, a krak grenade gripped tightly in his right hand. With his eyes closed, expecting to finally meet his Gods in the miasma of the Warp, the heretic completely fails to see Yngvar take one step to the left. Eyes clinched as tightly as his grenade, he barely registers the fact that he has become weightless, having run straight off the edge of the cliff.
"Shi-" he begins to mutter before the krak grenade explodes halfway down his fall. The clapping sound of the explosion reverberates down the cliffside as the heretics body literally turns to fluid, spraying the cliff face and staining it red.
The Emperor apparently has a sense of humor after all.
Gunter is aware of the pummeling Pax and Aisha took moments ago, and how the tide of battle can turn if one size seizes momentum. The battle around him disappears as he reflects back on the Iron Skull honor he has been awarded. No matter what type of freak his brother Space Marines took him for - what type of freak he took himself for - he was still a Space Marine and he knew his duty. To lead the charge and always move to the attack. There is no defense against an overwhelming offense. Gunter takes off like a shot, leaping like a gazelle, maintaining a speed that would turn a normal man's legs to rubber and leave them gasping for air in a few short paces.
Yngvar just shakes his head at the folly of a Heretic's claim to have seen more then he himself. Giving only the briefest of thoughts to the idiocy of the chaos agent, he turns towards the rocky outcropping to the west and once again punches the turbines, coming up well short of the rocky cover to the north. Having heard and scene the activity to his east, he knows trouble is coming. With Ice Splitter in one hand, he pulls a frag grenade from his stash, primes it appropriately and heaves it over the rock in the direction of the chaos miasma.
The grenade flies through the air with incredible force given its weight and size compared to its human-sized counterparts. It slams into the mob, breaking a heretic's jaw so badly that it hangs off of his face, held in place by skin only. Then it explodes. Chunks of people and gear fly away from the blast, singed and shredded in a cacophony of sound.
Her wounds sealing up nicely, and feeling better about Pax's situation Aisha draws her blessed bolter and aims at the heavy weapons team set up above Gunter. Adjusting for elevation and distance she takes aim at the heretic manning the weapon itself, which she sees is a large tube set up at an angle. There are two heretics around it, moving about and a third she can see holding a large weapon in his hands...
Rustin continues his run, now being sorely outpaced by the post-human Yngvar, his jump pack pushing him far beyond what Rustin is capable of. But that didn't matter. What Yngvar could do up close and personally to a few hundred heretics, Rustin could do from afar with that Heavy Stubber his eyes were locked on to.
The "horde" of heretical troops, clad in flak armor and wielding mostly lasguns maintain their discipline as the grenade single handedly takes out a few dozen soldiers. They stand strong, some of those in the front ranks with makeshift shields decorated with crude markings of foul 8-pointed stars interlock with their chaotic brothers next to them. An entire row of lasguns then bears down on Yngvar, having witnessed his brilliant flight only moments earlier. From within, a deep voice rumbles - an intelligible mix of Low Gothic and something far more sinister.
"Forged in iron!" He screams out into the night and is greeted with a return chant from more than one hundred and fifty mouths, "Forged in hatred!" As one, the troops open fire on Yngvar. The lasguns open up, churning up the rockface in front of Yngvar, tearing chunks out of it and some coming close to hitting his armored form, but the vast majority of attacks miss completely.
Roaring in anger, the leader within the horde screams obscenities at his men while bringing his plasma pistol to bear. He takes aim at the Space Wolf whose partial body he can see behind the rocks some meters in front of him. He takes aim and fires. The shot goes just wide of Yngvar, melting some of the rock in front of him to slag but sailing harmlessly away. The officer screams again in frustration, but it seems for now is incapable of doing much else.
As he charges to the next enemy emplacement, Gunter hears the tell tale *Thump* of a piece of ordnance being fired out of a mortar. A whistle breaks through the air over Sarlock and Aisha, growing louder and louder as the indirect-fired weapon comes down among their relatively close positions. It flies directly on top of Sarlock's position, breaking apart a moment before impacts and igniting the air in a wash of intense promethium flame. The ground around Sarlock soaks up the rich fuel, eating the oxygen molecules in the air and becoming a raging inferno. Sarlock cannot move in time, instead he just stands amid the firestorm, trusting in his hallowed ancient Power Armor to protect him - and protect him it does. While the dirt and dry grass turn to ashes around him, the Iron Hand doesn't even feel the internal temperature levels go up as his armor and iron body keep him safe.
On the ridge near the mortar team, a third cultist watches the Black Templar storm his position. Smiling insanely under his respirator and thick iron helmet with its sharpened steel halo of thorns, the trooper levels his grenade launcher at the Astartes and fired.
*thunk* The heavy weapon coughs as the cyclinder cycles around and loads a fresh round to replace the one just spent. Gunter, flying forward to meet his enemy head on is much too late in recognizing the thread before it is upon him. The krak round meant for his body collides with his right leg mid-step as he jerks to get out of the way. The enormous crack of the explosion doesn't stop him so much as the kinetic force of the hit. It was as though a Meganob had just chop blocked the stoic Templar. Dropping to one knee, Gunter is stopped in his tracks, his senses reeling from the sudden attack.
The ugly hole in his sacred armor patched up, Pax makes his way to the cliff face where Yngvar ascended. He doesn't speak, but his posture suggests he's thoroughly pissed off. A gentle whisp of steam rises from where the repair cement has bonded to the red hot ceramite as he moves.
Having his personal space all blown to hell, Sarlock hefts his bolter literally out of the flames and moves as quickly as he can, pushing himself up the canyon in the direction of his attackers. Since the mortar negated the cover he had, one spot was as good as any. He pushed on, searching for targets to turn into bloody memories.
The concussion blast throws Gunter like a rag doll, dropping him to the ground with enough force to create a small impact crater. It is a testament to the foundry's ancient craft and the machine spirits fortitude that the kinetic force is dissipated without causing any physical injury - Gunter groans and struggles to stand with just his pride wounded. Above him, he can see the grenadier lining up another shot on him.
Yngvar "feels" a shower of dust that was his cover fall around him, gently pattering off his armor. Turning to look behind him, he sees Rustin assessing the heavy machine gun for damage and realizes he is much too close to the line of sight Rustin has on the enemy horde. "Give 'em the hell they so want to achieve for the rest of us," he says as Rustin prepares to spray the ranks infantry. With a small burst of his engines, Yngvar hops easily over the boulder, landing on the other side and waiting for his moment to strike.
Aisha, having perched her bolter on the rocks in front of her previously after patching herself up, spies the mortar team that just bombarded Sarlock's postion below her. She focuses on the loader, watching his movements, seeing his rhythms, knowing what he is about to do before he does. Then she squeezes the trigger three times. There was no such thing as "over kill." The bolter rounds find purchase in his body first, punching through his armor and detonating inside of his stomach and rib cage. Huge chunks of his innards spray the hill top, covering his comrade in human-debris. Her final round catches the loader's head, turning it into a non-lethal bomb as pieces of his skull are lodged into his comrades.
Rustin picks up the Heavy Stubber, making sure to wipe away some chunks of heretic left by Yngvar before picking up the normally team-manned weapon in his hands and turning to bear down on the horde. Standing stationary in a tight line formation they were easy target. "You got it, boiyo."
"Time to make these feckers holier than the Throne-o-Terra," he says smuggly as he squeezes the trigger and sends a line of heavy projectily ammunition cutting through the ranks. Heretics fall by the wayside, some falling off the cliff face while others are cut nearly in half by the barrage. Heavy brass shell casings fall in a pile around Rustin as he does what he does best.
As the casings fall and the steam rising from the barrel in the cool early morning air, Rustin mutters to himself: "Holier than The throne? Yer losin' it Rusty...yer losin it," with a chuckle.
With Yngvar having disappeared from the fight, the horde turns their full attention on Rustin. With a command from their officer, they advance as a unit, firing on the scout as they do so. However, their movement and the low visibility send their shots way off target, not coming near the crude-talker.
The commander, furious at their lack of effectiveness lines up his plasma pistol and takes a shot. The weapon whines as nothing leaves the barrel, yet the energy coils begin to glow brightly, hissing as steam overcomes them. "Shit!" He yells, knowing what was coming and dropping the weapon to the ground before it could burn up his arm.
The spotter for the mortar team quickly takes his dead partner's place and loads another round into the tube, attempting to put right on top of Aisha with the similar success he had before. He drops the round in the tube and it fires out with a thud. Arching high into the air, it whistles as it falls down only a meter away from Aisha's position, lodging itself into the earth with a thud and failing to explode.
The grenadier smiles under his respirator at the sight of a mighty Space Marine being brought low by his hand. "You'd do well to die, Emperor's whore!" He takes a knee and sights down the barrel of his grenade launcher, taking his time as the Astartes moves to stand back up. With a thump, he sends another Krak round smashing into the Black Templar with massive kinetic energy displacement. While it fails to harm the mighty warrior, it seems to play hell with gyro-stabilizers in his armor.
Pax grips the rockface in his armored hands, lodging himself in place before pushing himself up with his legs. He repeats this process with a robotic motion, finding a footing, grabbing a lip and then pushing up. He is practically at the top when the rocks give away under his immense weight. He starts to freefall before Gypsy shoots out and grips onto the lip of the plateau, hauling her handler up and over. With a silent thanks to the ancient servo arm, Pax moves out toward the action.
At the canyon floor, Sarlock stops his trek westward as he gets eyes on the enemy troops. He watches them fire on Rustin, their shots going wide, and sees a beautiful opportunity to bring havoc to their ranks. With a quick spray, he drags his heavy bolter across the side of their line, pulping chaos militants and causing others to fall screaming to their deaths off the cliff side.
Gunter tries to stand in the mud when the explosion of a krak grenade pushes him down again. Surely this is some sign that the Emperor wants him to do something more than just slaughter the enemy with his sword. Silently Gunter invokes a prayer to the Emperor to guide his actions. As if on cue, it begins raining again, pouring down on the Black Templar.
Deeply composed, Yngvar can't really hear Rustin's words. They don't register. His enhanced senses' only focus is on decimating the horde which blasphemously occupies the ground on the other side of the crag. Upon seeing Pax reach the cliff side, the Space Wolf Assault Astartes engages his jump pack once more and makes a wide arc, so as to maintain his speed as his decent trajectory bares down upon the horde. As he gains altitude, the rain begins to pour down on him and lightning in the distances frames a terrifying visage as the Son of Russ holds a chainsword in each hand and begins his wrathful descent. He flies down feet first, gunning one of his two thrusters so that he begins spinning - arms outstretched and chainswords revving on full. There is a moment of panic in the heretic's lines as they see their imminent demise. The whirlwind of death crashes down among them, sending limbs and screams flying through the night air. He crushes three under his girth, barely registering their ribs breaking under his boots as he picks targets at random, rending off limbs and gutting them where they stand. When he takes stock of the situation, he finds himself amid a piles of strewn bodies, the remnants of the horde staring at him in horrified silence. Even the officer seems to have lost his voice in the carnage that just ensued.
As one, the horde breaks. Still clutching their weapons, they run as fast as they can away from the Space Wolf, in a poor attempt to regroup, not wanting to die the way dozens of their comrades just did. The Officer stands his ground, yelling at the cowards as they leave. He scoops up his plasma pistol and curses the weapon for still having to recharge.
From her position in cover, Aisha attempts to duplicate her previous shot and fire on the remaining mortar team member, but as the rain picks up again the barrel of her bolter slips ever so slightly on the rocks in front of her. The shot goes wide and to the right, sailing off harmlessly into the night and crashing into the sea kilometers away.
Rustin watches Yngvar's amazing display, remembering why he preferred Space Wolves to most other Astartes as the white bearded monster danced death throughout the heretic ranks. As they flee from the carnage, Rustin sees his chance and lets loose another barrage of fully automatic fire from the heavy stubber. His gun barks through the night, solid slugs smashing into the backs of those who were trying to flee, felling a dozen of them in one sweep of the weapon.
The back row of the horde turns to chaos as many are gunned down by Rustin. All they can do is attempt to flee, but stop short when they get to the western edge of the cliff. They are faced with two options: stand and fight, or jump and (maybe) survive.
The Officer growls and turns to regroup with his men, not so much fleeing the Space Wolf as cursing him while he moves to berate and scold his men.
As Yngvar recovers from his offensive, planning his next move, a searing beam of energy pierces the early morning sky with a sickly purple crackle and slams into the Space Wolf's chest. He feels his strength sapped from him as the blow pierces through layers of ancient ceramite and flexsteel, finding his enhanced physique beneath and rending it open. With a snarl, the Son of Russ is able to immediately spot where the shot came from. He also now sees a second group of disciplined chaos militia to the North West making their way to join the fray.
Up on the cliff face, the lone survivor of the mortar team wrenches out the dud round and tosses it off the cliff. He moves over to his stock pile of ammunition and prepares to drop more ordinance on the Emperor's Sons.
The Grenadier lines up yet another shot on Gunter, hoping that this will be the krak round that penetrates his ancient power armor and scores another jarring hit on the Black Templar, but other than the concussive force of the blast, Gunter's armor seems to have soaked up all of the explosive damage.
Pax begins moving faster than he has since the battle begun, stowing the slow and steady philosophy for something more post-human. He covers 24 meters of ground in a few seconds, passing by Rustin and making his way toward the cover of the rock formation on the southern plateau. The cool night air that smells salty and like the sea penetrates the rend in his armor, leaving tingling sensation across his black carapace and pieces of singed flesh and steel.
Sarlocks takes aim as the last of the horde flees from the Space Wolf. He presses down on the firing stud, sending another torrent of massive mass-reactive shells bursting through their numbers. The back line disappears under the hail of fire, most of them liquifying and then turning into human bombs as the shells begin detonating, sending their payload of shrapnel as well as bone into the ranks in front of them. The last of the horde dies screaming under the oppressive fire of the Iron Hand.
Gunter struggles in the mud and wonders if it might not be prudent to play dead for a moment - long enough to put the grenadier off-guard and surprise him.
The place where Yngvar's armored breastplate was sizzles as he staggers backward towards the cover behind him. With a barely noticeable stumble, he quickly takes a direct route towards the cover to the East. The flashing trajectory of the beam of energy that almost pierced his charred chest is still fresh in his mind. When he arrives, he relays the location of the sniper over the vox to the rest of the team, hoping the comms signals are powerful enough to reach the Emporer's chosen who are on the other side of the canyon.
"Heads up Brothers. Sniper in the rocky outcropping due South of the comms tower." It is obvious enough, but the bastard was sneaky and because of it the Space Wolf is hurting.
Aisha sees the plight of the Black Templar and changes her target from the remaining Mortar team member to the grenadier that has been pumping krak round after krak round into Gunter's Mk. VI Armor. She fires a single shot, but it goes wide, sailing just beside the grenadier's body as he unexpectedly moves sideways to say something to the mortarman next to him.
Rustin takes head of Yngvar's warning almost immediately, barely noticing the chaos soldiers ahead of him disappear into red, chunky mist. He slides over the rocks behind him, landing with the grace of a cat and turning to train his heavy weapon on the sniper's position. He has a hard time seeing the small outline of the prone sharpshooter, but he does see him and that is all he needs.
The Chaos officer, now out of range of all of his opponents and without troops to command, begins shimmying down the cliff face on the West end. He does so with much grace, and it makes you wonder if there were climbing aids back there.
The sniper on the cliff face scans for targets, having been denied his Space Wolf as he flew back behind one of the boulders. Huh, he think, Astartes can be cowards after all. Finding his next target, he takes in a breath, then lets half of it out before squeezing the trigger. After all, the one carrying the heavy bolter was too beautiful of a sight picture to let go.
The beam burns out through the night once more, striking Sarlock directly in the stomach. It sears through ceramite, flexsteel and adamantine plating with a foul enhanced chaotic energy. The blow would have knocked the air out of the Iron Hand were it not for his third lung kicking into overdrive and flooding his blood stream with oxygen. Though the blow felt like a hammer slamming onto the anvil, the Iron Hand is far from out of the fight.
The remaining mortar gunner looks unsuredly at his heavy weapon, not willing to risk dropping another round of ordnance into the tube and risk blowing himself and the grenadier to pieces. Instead, he follows suit and picks up his grenade launcher. It is the exact same model as the grenadiers and is emblazoned with foul marking and heretical symbols. He moves to the side of the cliff and takes aim at the closest Astartes - Sarlock. Having seen the effectiveness of the sniper's blast, he hopes to catch the Iron Hand off-guard. Shouldering his weapon, he fires off a round with a loud thump right on top of Sarlock's position.
The krak round bangs into Sarlock's left arm, momentarily flashing up on his HUD and through his nervous system. The pain isn't as bad as the annoyance of being attacked from two sides, but the concussion of the attack shakes his armor and jolts him where he stands.
Pax brings up his Sniper rifle, sighting down on the sniper that has caused damage to two of his brothers. Leaning out to the right, he fires off a quick shot, trying to keep himself in cover as to not expose his powerful armor to the chaotically blessed power of the enemy weapon. His toxic dart flies true but fails to penetrate the armor of his foe.
Sarlock tries to move, but the impact of the krak round on the back of his arm seems to have momentarily shorted the servos in his armor as well as shaking him physically inside his armor. Unless something is done quickly, he will be a sitting duck for the next savage assault.
Gunter decides to take a different approach and remain still. He channels the hallowed verses and litanies of hate of the God Emperor of Mankind and the Codex, levelling out his breathing and controlling his metabolism with his mind. If the bluff worked, he would be up and moving again shortly - he knew that. If not, he would be no worse for wear. Only time would tell if his enemy bought it.
The new horde, much bigger than the last, holds its position. Its front lines laying in the prone position while those behind them kneel down and those behind them stand. They look as still as stone in the early morning air as the rain patterns down swiftly on their spiked, chaos emblazoned helmets and armor.
Yngvar finishes applying the cement to his armor, quickly closing the gaps blasted through by the sniper. Dropping the empty tube to the ground, he quickly mentally pictures his enemy - lying prone on the sniper's perch. He knows it would be pushing it to make the distance, but he also knows that if something doesn't change, the entire team's mission could be stalled to a halt right here. Or worse. Gunning the engines of his Jump pack, the Space Wolf soars into the air and over the gap between the plateau and the sniper's perch. With a final push of his thrusters he lands directly in front of the sniper - a seven and a half foot monster wolf staring down his prey.
Aisha decides enough is enough. Too much time sitting back in cover while the team advanced and was dragged through the mud with precise enemy fire for their efforts. Jumping out of cover, the Daughter of Death runs at an incredible speed to close the distance between her current position and the cover of the sniper's roost. She feels the strength of all of the sisters who wore the armor before her flood her veins as she covers the distance at an inhuman rate. Taking cover behind the large rock, she waits to line up the perfect shot on the filth with the grenade launcher.
Rustin turns around, smirking to himself at the thought of the coward sniper having to fist-fight with Yngvar. He hopes that when his end does come, it is slow. Seeing the plight of Gunter and Sarlock, he sights down on the two chaos grenadiers. He squeezes the trigger and sends a stream of full metal jackets toward the duo but his aim is off and the shots either smash into the cliff face or sail overhead harmlessly.
Out of sight from everyone, the militia officer makes his way down to the bottom of the cliff face and begins making his way to the lines of the reserve troop unit. "Move forward now! Space Marines are here!" He yells out as he runs.
The sniper's eyes go wide at the proximity in which the Space Wolf landed near him. Abandoning his ruinous-blessed Long las, he stands and draws a krak grenade.
These Space Marines aren't worth Grox shite with enough krak rounds, thinks the Grenadier as he stares at Gunter's still "dead" body. He briefly considers putting another one in him, but with all the fuss he made trying to move after being shot the first three times - and that idiotic charge with his little sword - the grenadier is sure now that he must be dead. He moves next to his comrade, about to fire on the Marine with the Heavy Bolter when the heavy stubber opened up on his position.
"Bastard!" He yells, putting the grenade launcher up to his shoulder and adjusting for the distance between him and Rustin. The round sails true, but Rustin is as quick as they come and easily jumps as far as he dares west in order to avoid the blast. The krak round slams into the rocks and travels a full foot inside of them before detonating and showering the area with chunks of hard earth.
The remaining grenadier keeps his focus on the Marine, thinking that his comrade could deal with the heavy stubber. Aiming once again, he makes to put down the Iron Hand where he stands. The grenade launcher thumps out another krak round, spinning viciously toward the Marine and connecting with his left leg just behind the knee. The Krak round pushes through his sacred armor, piercing flesh and bone with a sickening explosion that blows the big Marine's leg out from under him and sends Sarlock falling onto his back. His enhanced physiology kicks into overdrive in an attempt to stop the worst of an attack that would have destroyed a lesser man.
Seeing that his rifle was out of ammunition, Pax quickly mag locks it to his back. Knowing action was better than inaction, the Ultramarine pulls his hip-holstered bolt pistol in a flash and fires a single shot at the sniper from an incredible distance. The round punches into his chest, exploding internally just as intended, showering Yngvar in innards and viscera - effectively putting the threat down for the count while simultaneously stealing the Wolf's kill. The krak grenade drops at Yngvar's feet and explodes.
Yngvar's reacts in a moment, seeing the krak grenade fall and burning his jump pack to send him straight up into the air. Below him, the ordnance detonates, absolutely oblitering what was left of the sniper's lower half and face.
Sarlock grits his steel teeth as he falls to his back - like a turtle with his ammunition backpack strapped on. In a show of defiance, he angles his heavy bolter back in the direction of his attacker, yelling out and tilting his head back to get a target. He sprays down the area with a cascade of heavy bolter fire, hoping at the very least to pin down the grenadiers if not destroy them outright.
The rouse having worked, Gunter jumps up from his prone position and sprints for the cliff face, sword in hand. With one leap, his free hand grips the top of the next cliff face and he is able to pull himself up, using his feet to push with. Sword in hand, he holds close to the cover of the mesa, getting a sight of the horde before him.
As Gunter moves into position, members of the Chaos militia turn at the sound of his heavily armored body coming up on them. A cry goes out and as one, those that can see him line up their weapons and move to fire. Lasfire rings out and brightens up the night. The superheated photons burn into the rockface, chipping off pieces of it before slamming into Gunter's beaked Mk. VI battle-helmet. The force knocks his head back but does no permanent damage.
After hearing the almost distance gushy crack of the sniper's body exploding below him, Yngvar turns to where he saw the horde approaching. Eyeing the front, lower-most platform of the comms tower and already soaring gracefully above the carnage below, he fires off towards the Northeastern ledge of the comms tower, just above the swirling mass of chaos infantry and evil fury. He has to cool his jets, literally, and lands with a thud directly in front of the Comms Towers door.
Aisha watched as the grenadier fired another smoking krak round onto the team's already injured Devastator. Anger overcomes her features and then she pushes it down to calm herself. Aiming her Bolter at an upward angle, she fired off a single shot. The mass reactive round strikes true, crashing into the shooter's left arm and blowing it off at the shoulder. He screams into the night as he falls to the ground, spasming and rolling off the side off the cliff, smacking his head off of the lower plateu before tumbling to a stop many meters down.
Rustin drops the heavy stubber to the ground, feeling like it was the wrong weapon for the job now that the enemy was a single person and not a mob. He pulls out Sexy Sadie in a fluid motion and tries to get a shot on the remaining Grenadier. The already pinned chaos follower proves to be a difficult target at this range and in this low light. Rustin fires but the las round goes well to the right, burning off into the night without doing any damage.
The Officer whose squads were annihilated keeps running back to the heretic lines, moving at a full sprint. Hot breath steams out of his cruel looking, skull shaped rebreather as he gasps and moves as fast as he can.
The final Grenadier on the Mesa dives back as Sarlock's heavy Bolter rounds chew up the cliff face in front of him, sending explosions of earth and sharp rock every which way. He ducks down as low as he can and moves backwards - away from the wrath of the Astartes. He stays as low as possible, trying to find some cover on the flat plateau.
Pax moves across the plateau in an attempt to cover as much ground as possible and close with the chaos militia horde. Knowing his wounds were nothing to bat an eye at, the Ultramarine Tech moves behind the large rock cover as he sprints forward - just in case.
Sarlock picks himself up off the ground, hefting his enormous weight with grace even though he had just been wounded rather severely. Seeing the traitor commanding officer sprinting across open ground, he opens up with his heavy bolter, chewing apart the chain link fence that stood between him and his target. The damage done to him has taken its toll and his aim is off, sending giant mass-reactives exploding against the Communications Tower.
Gunter stands facing the horde. Every fiber of his being screams for him to charge into melee, cutting the bastards down in a torrent of blood, but a small confident voice urges another course. Following the brief lesson offered by Inquisitor Carmillus Gunter reaches out across the vastness of space and lets his mind touch the void - tentatively. He can feel the power asking him to release it; begging for release. Gunter understood how dangerous the warp could be, and he resolved to use just the smallest amount, just a drop of the fire hose of his full potential. The warp power coursed through his veins then exploded from his body in a powerful inferno. The flames took the form of the heretics burned by Gunter and his brothers over a lifetime devoted to the Emperor's wars and Suffering Not a Witch to Live. The inaudible screaming mass swept in among the chaos cultists, blistering skin and turning bodies into blackened charred husks. The power of the warp could not be denied. Could Gunter stay strong enough to use it always in devotion to the Emperor without becoming that which he feared most? Whatever doubts lingered must be put aside - the horde was too numerous to have been completely eliminated by a fettered blast. There would be work for his sword, too.
The entire foward left flank of the chaos militia line melts under the ultra intense warp-fire spewed forth by the Kill Team's Black Templar. Cultists scream and die where they stand, yet the horde doesn't break. Those who have died are simply replaced by the back lines as they move forward.
"Kill the Carrion-Emperor's witch!" Screams the Officer from within the armored infantry lines. Las blasts ring out as the Officer lines up a shot with his plasma pistol. The lasguns crack out again at Gunter but the rounds are weak and ineffective against his hallowed armor. The officer fires off a blast of plasma that is so poorly aimed Gunter momentarily wonders if there was another Astartes behind him that the officer was intending on hitting.
Action Economy is on Yngvar