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post #163 of (permalink) Old 02-28-15, 09:18 PM
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The countless corpses laid bubbling and dying as the 10th stood there admiring their work. They weren't universally effective and had they entered the fray against the other Astartes it would have been a waste but in this niche where their fine skills were most effective they were absolutely lethal and reveled in that grim task. Faint gurgles and whimpers strained against the cacophony of combat the brief intensity of which had likely never been witnessed before. Unfortunately their moment was cut short as the strained voice of the Corpse Master bellowed in over the vox, "All available units in service to the Lord of Lies. . ." The threat felt redundant but the urgency was very well noted and within scant moments it was well agreed that 10th would rather keep the Apothecarium on their good side and the powerful humming of jump packs throttling up and the 10th claw was soaring through the air and again the sight of battle much more one sided as the overwhelming numbers of those loyal to Horus consumed the few ragged souls like ants.

In the distance an image slightly larger than a marine but smaller than a flyer was visible and it was soon realized that it was Veptus with Xandrek in tow fleeing the battle. Clearly the Lord of Lies had been injured enough to warrant an evacuation which itself seemed odd considering the traditions of Night Lords to abandon the dying. As the Destroyer was playing out what they would be doing in his mind terror and anger filled his helmet as members of the 10th dropped from his HUD with a speed that was astounding. Too quick for any sort of anti-aircraft fire, no something was cutting them from the sky and as if in immediate response a black blur crossed his view and it was obvious that none other than the lord of the XIXth was upon them. At that moment the man that was essentially already dead and felt no fear experienced a cold trickle down his spine. He cut the engines early and descended only to be met with the rain of chem rusted ceramite, blood and other body parts from those of the 10th that had been dismembered midflight. At once the black blur was upon him and with a stern face that betrayed the rolling boil of rage underneath the Raven Lord Corax was upon him as well. The blade cut cleanly in a slash through a small section off the top of his helmet and through the jump pack itself sending him abruptly to the ground.

Serhiy struck the soil with all the grace of a brick with a rocket strapped to one side as the one turbine kept firing sending him away from the group and into a collection of Word Bearers who graciously cushioned his impact. The Destroyer rose discarding the useless jump pack and watched the relatively pristine Sons of Lorgar stand to in wonderful contrast to his own grizzled armor stained with chemical burns and blood and scorch marks from fire of all kind their meticulous parchment and tapestry of countless teaching they clung to for inspiration opposing his chains and trophies from the day. They stood opposite each other with an uncomfortable pause in the empty space between them until the Destroyer marine spoke.

"Funny your armour should be marred first this day by me. . ."

The spiteful remark was short lived as the hud showed more 10th claw members drop from his screen and in a moment he was in dead run as fast as his cumbersome body would allow him back into the fray leaving behind the preachers. He witnessed his own comrades of 1st claw, legendary butchers in their own rights that could strike terror into man's heart get cut down. Azrael's readings faltered greatly. The ground wasn't so much dirt anymore but rather a writhing sea of blood and Astartes and it was difficult to run. Serhiy had to claw and crawl almost literally wading through the bodies of the fallen to get back to his squad and likely his death. There was no fooling to be had the Raven Lord would bathe in his irradiated blood. All he could do would be to carry a phosphex bomb available and primed to attempt to take the Primarch with him. The life signs of his claw stabilized and as he crested a hill he understood why with an immediate awe that washed over him. The black blur had vanished retreating back to his kin and there were two Primarchs here now. Lorgar of the Word Bearers now laid wounded on the ground and their own Night Haunter stood defiant to the fleeing Raven Lord and much in the same awe as he held on the Nightfall but even more so in the moment of battle.

The Primarch addressed a few of the 1st Claw including most notably Xandrek and Veptus and just like that had vanished back into the battle. Everyone seemed stabilized for the moment and there was no need to speak.

“All members of the Fourth Company, heed me. The Lord of Lies commands you to withdraw. Our work here is finished."

Now with their evacuation moments away Serhiy took the time to survey the killing fields as there was no longer a battle occurring. The bang that would mark the first of undoubtedly many great clashes and conflicts was winding down like the leftover embers of a wildfire and the few pockets of resistance burnt out one by one now. Fear had come to the cosmos.

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