Great stories here once again.
I've no idea whether this stands up to any of the ones so far, but here goes.
(I don't think there are any glaring typo's, but I'm tired atm, so can amend):
“Upon Brotherhood...” (I think it's 1097 words, not including title).
Surrounded by ruined buildings and the rent carcasses of friends and foes, Lucian and Marius faced each other across the blasted landscape; the last two survivors of the shattering firefight and wild melee.
However, ‘survivors’ was a moot -point as each bore grievous wounds, leaking vitality onto the blackened and twisted earth...
Lucian limped to the right, victim of an overhead swing from the other’s multi-headed power-flail that had ravaged away nearly half the armour on his left side.
Marius held his arm -and that weapon- closer to his side than usual, trying to protect his armour and side, torn open by Lucian’s powerfist.
As they circled for position amongst the ruins, Lucian’s hate-filled voice called out:
“Look at our brother Hector: still standing sentinel over lands blasted by your betrayal and warmongering!"
"All his noble deeds and long history count for naught, buried under your blood-greed and madness!”
Marius regarded the corpse, noting that it was slit from the head almost to the groin, so that each side furled outwards like a flower. The perfection of the single strike which had achieved Hector’s demise was the only thing that kept the body from falling down.
The wildly hissing screeches greeting Lucian’s words almost overloaded his helm’s audio receptors and he realised that it was incredulous laughter from Marius’ corrupted voicebox:
“Hector..? Oh, that one..! He was nothing."
"No, he was ‘weakling number 74’, mere meat-for-the-beasts.”
“Marius does not acknowledge any brotherhood!"
"Marius is no longer here, Lucian Margrave!”
“Now there is only Scareth...” it promised sibillantly.
Retreating, Scareth followed slowly and taunted him; perhaps former-Marius’ injuries had not been as damaging as Lucian had hoped.
The whips of the flail entwined over and under, writhing excitedly against each other, wetly, like snakes in congress, eager to taste his pain once again.
Taking cover at a corner wall of burning scaffolding, Lucian hunched down to present less of a target. Yet still the enemy’s bolter spat out a volley of rounds which drummed maniacally upon his armour like a deluge of rain:
It shredded the flimsy protection Lucian had tried to shelter behind, as well as coring several minor servomotors -which accentuated his limp- and drove him back into the relative safety of the flames; obscuring detection, but promising a slow roasting death as temperatures rose to infernal levels.
Shielded from view, Lucian attempted to make a rear strike, but Scareth turned at the last moment, whipping the flail into his midriff; a series of glancing blows which nevertheless made him almost double over as agony shot through him.
A backhanded swipe freed himself, staggering away to what he thought was a safe distance, yet Scareth pursued.
The latter’s melta howled and a beam of ravening energy seared forth, carving a great furrow from the earth towards him and further incinerating pipework and a barricade, as it’s main strength missed by inches. However, Lucian still winced as a section of leg armour was vapourised.
Before the charge hit home, there was just enough time for one of his plasma guns to spit a volley of cerulean bolts at the foe, punching hard into the reinforced armour, tearing it away in places and scattering it’s circuits across their battlefield.
Scareth’s momentum was sufficient to carry him into Lucian, sending them crashing into the rockface behind. The dull crump of an explosion told that one of Lucian’s armour systems had just ruptured from the impact.
Scareth’s whip lashed out once again, tearing free one of the plasma guns which had inflicted so much agony.
However, the cruelly-barbed heads of the weapon careened off his shoulder armour and caught, stuck fast into the cliff’s granite.
Scareth initially howled in frustration, yet the screams suddenly stopped and Lucian saw a momentary flash of understanding in his foe’s blood-shot eyes and was granted the briefest of nods.
Lucian almost cried out in anguish at the profound sense of loss ushered by memories from centuries ago -when his brother was taken by Chaos- and he knew what he had to do.
Reaching out, he grabbed a handful of Scareth’s armour cabling, ripping them free in a cascade of bright orange sparks.
Although the motor-drives to the arm and powerflail were now destroyed, with Scareth now back in control, the enemy kicked out, hitting Lucian's left ankle-joint, which he felt buckle and almost give way beneath him.
Punching out again, he grabbed hold of Scareth’s warped chest armour, pulling his opponent downwards as the muzzle of his surviving plasma gun rose.
Closing his eyes, the weapon discharged with a thunderclap, obliterating the traitor’s head and most of their upper body.
A fountain of baleful daemonic energy gushed outwards from it’s ruined chest cavity and Lucian threw away the falling carcass, so that it’s foulness gouted away into what was left of the refinery.
A second cyan bolt lashed out to ignite the last storage tower still standing.
The blast bathed the entire area in the supernova of flash-fire, before quickly dulling to a furnace-glow orange sea which covered the remains.
Approaching the inferno, Lucian reached out and parted the melted ceramics and twisted metals until he found the item:
Sensors strained against the glare at first, then filtered out the flames to see the plaque with the Titan’s completion date and Forge World, identical to the one which graced Honoria’s flank.
Although it tested the heat-tolerances of his foot actuators, Lucian forced himself to watch for long seconds after the bronze engraved plate was consumed.
As it melted to slag, it joined the rest of the detritus that had once been Scareth; it all flowed through the ravaged streets, being consumed by intense heat as he limped away.
++Status updated, 53rd founding, Legio Ignatum:++
++Barbarius Fortis, Princeps Vax Delarien, Warlord. Status: Decapitated, Seige of Fortress Malbadon.++
++Vulpens Armorate, Princeps Garrat, Warhound. Status: Sheared in half by Baletitan Supurrus Maximus, Legio Tiger Eyes.++
++Talon and Ferrox, Princeps’ Kian and Trajor, Warhound Twin-Team. Status: Vapourised during Great Enemy’s deliberate eruption of Hope IV volcano chain.++
++Hector Imperius, Princeps Janvier Flores, Reaver. Status: 74th victim of Scareth -formerly Rex Invigilium, Legio Ignatum- Thane’s World.++
++Honoria Justae, Princeps Lucian Margrave, Warlord. Status: Active. Thane’s World.++
++Rex Invigilium, Princeps Marius Ingoll, Warlord. Status: Delivered from Chaos. 35th victim of Honoria Justae, Thane’s World.++
The monitoring servitors noticed a miniscule increase in the saline content of Lucian’s amniotic tank before mindlessly purging it’s impurity from the Princeps’ system:
One last tear shed for a brotherhood between Titans which had -even at the end- proved to be forged stronger than adamantium.
Urgently trying to trace any living relatives of Private Sam/Samuel "Jock" Wilson (Black Watch, No. 6 Commando, UK Army Service ID 2764432, died 10.06.44). Any info/suggestions gratefully received.
"Mockles! Pent on silpen tree, blockards three a-feening. Mockles! What silps came to thee, in thy pantry, dreaming?"
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Last edited by andygorn; 10-10-11 at 05:57 PM.