-:Trouble on the Path:-
“You’d best hope we get there soon Notch, I want to squish some bugs and my arse is already starting to itch in places I can’t reach...” called Crank over the dash mounted radio vox.
Since the heavy war engine could not keep up with the two faster tanks, he was being towed along behind us in a heavily armoured wagon that to my knowledge had possibly been used to tow the equally massive bulks of the blessed Astartes dreadnoughts. Even though he was secured in place it still didn't keep him from complaining about every jostling bump in the road as we continued along.
After awhile Lucius spoke up “So captain, I’ve been meaning to ask... How did the tyranids get down here? If there had been a hive ship we would have seen it when the Celestius Mortae was in the area...”
Notch nodded, “Good question kiddo... But we had reports of a smaller hive fleet that attacked the second system over... It was dealt with, but that doesn’t mean their spore pods couldn’t have scattered before the ships bit the dust... Tyranids can stay in stasis for decades until their pod happens to crash into an unsuspecting planet, and those pods are usually so small that they are often mistaken for space debris... WOAH!!!”
Suddenly the chimera lurched as Notch hit the brakes, the chimera beside ours doing the same “Oi! What the fethe are we stopping for this time!?” called Crank.
We were staring down a pile of trees and boulders that were now blocking the road completely, just a few feet in front of us, but that didn’t stop crank from asking “What? Does one of the runts need to take a leak?”
We piled out of the tanks and scanned the area as the two vets helped unhook Crank from the chassis of the wagon
“This is rather troubling...” said the commander as he looked over the placement of the debris. “Nids don’t work like this... They don’t think tactically... They just swarm and devour... This also means they’ve been watching us, but they couldn’t have discerned that we were going back to get more guns, could they?”
the familiar stomping came closer as Crank looked at the pile, “Who cares... This is only a minor bump in the road... I’ll have this crap cleared in five mins tops!” he said as he went to the pile and began tossing the logs and boulders like they were nothing.
Suddenly there was a rustle in the bushes on each side of the trail. We raised our weapons, one of the veterans running to the transport just as a group of creatures jumped out and began to run at us as a rampant chittering mass.
They were only half the size of us, but they were covered in stone grey, chitinous armor plates, their limbs each ended in small sharp scythes of bone and their mouths a deathly grin of razor sharp teeth.
“GAUNTS!” shouted a vet as he began to lay down fire on the swarm just as ten of them jumped onto Crank’s lumbering metal body, biting and scratching at the thick steel plates.
Crank spun around, trying to shake the little brutes off of him.
He caught one in the arm with his saw, the sudden loss of its limb causing the creature to fall to the ground, letting out a helpless shriek as he stomped his massive foot down on it.
I brought my gun up and took aim, reciting a short litany to my weapon before squeezing the trigger. My shot held true and hit one of the creatures, burning through its skull and out the other side, wounding a second one behind it, but suddenly they changed direction and started to come after me just as the other vet came back out of the tank, carrying a flamer, seeing the writhing swarm coming after me and crying “RUN LAD! RUN!”
I took to his word and ran as fast as I could, turning and firing my weapon back into the crowd of gaunts. Suddenly much of the crowd burst into flame as the catachan doused them in the Emperors cleansing fire...
By the Emperor... That sound... That horrible, blood curdling sound as thirty aliens suddenly screamed in agony, falling in a writhing pile of seared flesh. But there were still five others after me, two of which I managed to take out with another well placed shot, but now they were upon me.
The creatures were fast, but I caught one in the face with the butt of my rifle before dropping it and going for my combat knife.
The other vet dropped his bolter and ran, tackling another one and cutting off its head with his own giant combat blade.
I managed to boot another one, knocking it aside before swinging my knife at another, though it only glanced the hard carapace.
I heard a scream that I realized was Lucius as two of the gaunts pierced his torso and proceeded to rip him apart using claws and teeth alike.
I screamed with primal rage as I ran at them, tackling one to the ground and planting my knife firmly into its neck, gouts of thick green blood spraying from the wound as it died.
The other didn’t even notice its comrade’s demise as it continued tearing my friend apart, though its life was short lived when Notch grabbed the creature, crushing its neck in a vice-like head lock.
I stood and saw my friend Dax alongside the vet with the flamer, unloading a few rounds from his shotgun into three more creatures that were trying to sneak up from behind, splattering his front with mutant gore.
There was a loud war cry as Crank charged another five, trampling them to death as he swung an arm around, decapitating another three.
The vet once again swept the remaining mutants with fire, finally ridding us of the troublesome insects.
“Report!” called Notch as we began to take stock.
“I’ve still got three quarters of a tank left...” called the vet with the flamer. “I’ve still got five clips... We’ve lost one of the kids...” said the other vet.
“His name was Lucius!” said Dax as he got up, catching his breath, tears streaming down his face to mix with the mutant blood that was smeared on his cheeks.
Notch only sighed as he went to Dax placing a hand on his shoulder “I’m sorry about your friend, but he gave his life bravely to serve the Emperor and we will respect him for it. That is, once we’ve wiped those fething bugs from this world!” he growled.
Dax looked up at him, his eyes aglow with kindled fire and newly fuelled hatred for his enemies.
Once Crank had cleared the path, there was a crackle on the radio. Notch picked it up, “Report...”
The voice came on though there was quite a bit of static interference “We’ve found the pods captain...” Notch looked a bit worried “Pods?”
The man’s voice came back on, “Yeah, about....ssssssssssshhhhhhhh” Notch sighed as he waited for the static to clear, “Come again, how many?”
“Thirty so far sir, but they’re fairly scattered though some were stuck together, we believe it was part of a cluster that fell down here...”
“Alright, good job, go back to the main tunnel entrance with the others and wait there, we’re coming back now with extra equipment and ammo...” “Rodger sir...”
Notch fiddled with the radio dial for a moment before making contact with the main base.
“How are the preparations going?” “Good captain, we have three quarters of the supplies loaded like you’ve asked, transports four through fifteen are fired up and ready to go!”
“Then move out and keep a sharp eye out along the road... We’ll rendezvous at the main entrance and stock up more before we head in to flush the little mudbug bastards out...”
“Rodger sir... For the Emperor...”
Notch grinned, “For the Emperor”
<Again, sorry for the late update, writing this book has sort of taken a bit of a back seat right now since i'm enjoying the holidays with my famjam. Most of the time I've been starved of ideas for piecing together new chapters and often find myself wanting to do this...
You know, cause if hitting things to make them work worked for the Fonz, then there's no reason it shouldn't work for me!
Anyways, thanks for your comments and pointers guys, it's really nice to have appreciative readers like you. Update next Wednesday, or Thursday. Peace out, have a merry Christmahaunakawanzasolstice!>