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post #1 of 14 (permalink) Old 10-02-15, 04:21 PM Thread Starter
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Default Heresy-Online's Expeditious Stories 15-09: Inconvenience

Welcome to the year's ninth






For those of you that are unfamiliar with HOES, here's how it works:

Each month, there will be a thread posted in the Original Works forum for that month's HOES competition. For those of you interested in entering, read the entry requirements, write a story that fits the chosen theme and post it as a reply to the competition thread by the deadline given. Each and every member of Heresy Online is more than welcome to compete, whether your entry is your first post or your thousandth. We welcome everyone to join the family of the Fan Fiction Forum.

Once the deadline has passed, a separate voting thread will be posted, where the readers and writers can post their votes for the top three stories. Points will be awarded (3 points for 1st, 2 for 2nd, and 1 for 3rd) for each vote cast, totalled at the closure of the voting window, and a winner will be announced. The winner will have his/her story added to the Winning HOES thread and be awarded the Lexicanum's Crest award for Fiction excellence!

Theme

The idea with the theme is that it should serve as the inspiration for your stories rather than a constraint. While creative thinking is most certainly encouraged, the theme should still be relevant to your finished story. The chosen theme can be applied within the WH40K, WHF, HH, and even your own completely original works (though keep in mind, this IS a Warhammer forum) but there will be no bias as to which setting is used for your story.

As far as the theme goes, please feel free with future competitions to contact me with your ideas/proposals, especially given that my creative juices may flow a bit differently than yours. All I ask is that you PM me your ideas rather than posting them into the official competition entry/voting threads to keep posts there relevant to the current competition.

Word Count

The official word count for this competition will be 1,000 words. There will be a 10% allowance in this limit, essentially giving you a 900-1,100 word range with which to tell your tale. This is non-negotiable. This is an Expeditious Story competition, not an Epic Story nor an Infinitesimal Story competition. If you are going to go over or under the 900-1,100 word limit, you need to rework your story. It is not fair to the other entrants if one does not abide by the rules. If you cannot, feel free to PM me with what you have and I'll give suggestions or ideas as to how to broaden or shorten your story.

Each entry must have a word count posted with it. Expect a reasonably cordial PM from me (and likely some responses in the competition thread) if you fail to adhere to this rule. The word count can be annotated either at the beginning or ending of your story, and does not need to include your title.

Without further ado...

The theme for this month's competition is:

Inconvenience

Entries should be posted in this thread, along with any comments that the readers may want to give (and comments on stories are certainly encouraged in both the competition and voting threads!) 40K, 30K, WHF, and original universes are all permitted (please note, this excludes topics such as Halo, Star Wars, Forgotten Realms, or any other non-original and non-Warhammer settings). Keep in mind, comments are more than welcome! If you catch grammar or spelling errors, the writers are all more than free to edit their piece up until the close of the competition, and that final work will be the one considered for voting. Sharing your thoughts with the writers as they come up with their works is a great way to help us, as a FanFiction community, grow as a whole.

The deadline for entries is Midnight GMT, 31 October 2015
. Remember, getting your story submitted on 22nd will be just as considered by others as one submitted on 11th! Take as much time as you need to work on your piece! Any entries submitted past the deadline will not be considered in the competition, regardless of whether the voting thread is posted or not.

Additional Incentive
If simply being victorious over your comrades is not enough to possess you to write a story, there will be rep rewards granted to those that participate in the HOES Challenge.

Participation - 1 reputation points, everyone will receive this
3rd place - 2 reputation points
2nd place - 3 reputation points
1st place - 4 reputation points and Lexicanum's Crest

If you have any questions, feel free to ask in this thread.

Without further nonsense from me, let the writing begin!

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post #2 of 14 (permalink) Old 10-02-15, 07:56 PM
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Out of curiosity, I never found out how I did in the last one - I'm not expecting anything, just curious.
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post #3 of 14 (permalink) Old 10-04-15, 01:16 PM Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by DelvarusThePitFighter View Post
Out of curiosity, I never found out how I did in the last one - I'm not expecting anything, just curious.
Voting is still happening on last month's contest.
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post #4 of 14 (permalink) Old 10-13-15, 12:43 PM
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Marriage Plans
by J.D. Barbera

Original Works - Fantasy setting
Word Count - 1097



Y’Mordin slammed his fist upon the table, rare anger laced his tone..

“Gods above, boy! It is a marriage announcement! I would expect you to be happy!”

His son, Y’Salnos, paled and shook slightly, but his soft voice held firm in defiance. “I am only seventy-two, father. What right have I to a wife?” He took a ragged breath. “What wealth have I to offer? Hall? Hold? What of mine do I have?”

Y’Mordin jammed his finger into his son’s chest, driving him back. Advancing each step, his finger driven by each step until Y’Salnos flinched beneath the bruising strikes.

“You, boy, are Cisternwatch! Priest to this Hold. You are a member of not only the clan, but the Guild! Our guild! Less than a dozen families sit at the counsel table. Yours is among the most powerful. We control the water!

Y’Mordin raised his voice to the ceiling beseechingly, “‘Moradin, strengthen me and give me a hammer hard enough to get through the boy’s skull.” He locked eyes with Y’Salnos. “I picked her for you! And she is a Mountaingate! Are you not the one who have mooned over her for fifty years? Her mother was hotter than full forge when I! Me! Cisternwatch himself! I came to her hall for her daughter, and you tell me no? You dare ask me, "What do I have to offer?”

Y’Salnos stood silent, his eyes fixed upon his father. Y’Mordin fell silent, stroking his beard slowly. Y’Mordin knew that no amount of blather would fluster Y’Salnos. He would have his say. Without rancor, without ire. Y’Mordin did not like to face his son in such a fashion, his son’s reactions were un-dwarflike. It was something that made Y’Salnos different, and by that virtue, a loner.

After a short wait, as Y’Salnos studied his father, he ascertained that his father was ready to wait for his reasoning and nodded as he spoke in his soft voice, “Show me then the fruits of my labor. The receipts of completion and payment. Take me to the coin and works of art that I have commissioned or found as I have moved from Journeyman to Craftsman. Show me what every grooms brings to his marriage and that comes not from the vault of my parents and kin.”

Y’Mordin frowned, then nodded. He would not debate Y’Salnos. It would not end with his victory. “Very well, you leave me with little choice. I am the head of your clan and your father. I say you will change and march to the Great Hall and hear your Announcement. I, of the highest, negotiated a marriage with nigh the lowest so you may have what you covet. I will not face public humiliation because you want to build your hoard like any common dwarf. You will heed my command.”

Y’Salnos visibly wilted before his father as he made his final point.

“Yes, father. Very well. Allow me to pray and change. I will be along shortly.”

Y’Mordin paused before turning. He knew he had not addressed his son’s concern, but was pleased that Y’Salnos was able to put it aside for clan, and his father’s, honor. He looked down at the Announcement Robe he had brought for Y’Salnos and smoothed it out. The pieces were set and Cisternwatch Clan’s plan would be put into motion. This marriage was the final move. What started as a dire prophecy had grown over the years into an obsession of Y’Mordin. Though dwarves were not known for their divination skills, this prophecy had been given directly to the Clan. In order to save the Stronghold, Cisternwatch, the smallest clan, had to marry into Cisternwatch every clan of Helveket Stronghold before the stars aligned, else the Stronghold would perish. The groom of the final marriage would, somehow, protect the Stronghold from it’s foretold demise. With Y’Salnos’s marriage, though Y’Mordin did not know how, his son would save the mountain. All within would be safe.

As the door closed, Y’Salnos sighed. Moving over to a wardrobe, he pushed aside the clothing within. He released a catch, and the back of the wardrobe fell away revealing a low tunnel. A moment was spent rearranging the clothing and replacing the wardrobe’s back before Y’Salnos’s even tread echoed softly around him as his feet took him on a childhood journey taken some fifty years earlier after a particularly harsh sentence exiled him to his room.

His fiance, and father, would simply have to wait a bit for that Announcement, for there was no power in the world that could place Y’Salnos before the entire stronghold penniless and honorless to take a wife out of turn. Whatever possessed his father to pursue a marriage some seventy five years before tradition would allow Y’Salnos to petition an available woman had blinded him to the repercussions that would arise by having his son take the next available woman by virtue of the clan’s political clout.

All he needed was to find supplies to carry him safely beyond the demesne of the mountain, yet if he tarried to get such items, he would be caught before escaping. Through the tunnel he trotted, picking up speed as the slope drew him downward. Moradin, he knew, would provide him with food, water, protection, but no more than that. It would have to be his own merit to earn what he would need to prove his worth despite his age and win him his promised wife. As he neared the tunnel’s exit, Y’Salnos found himself pacing the tiny entry debating his course forward.

Pushing a rock out of his way, Y’Salnos stepped into the sun. He would go into the world with only his faith of Moradin. It would be best and most difficult. The way it should be. Returning the rock to its resting place, a shadow blocked the sun. Defeat fell across him like a smothering blanket.

“How did you find me?”

A cheery voice turned him around. “You showed me the tunnel yourself, and I am Mountaingate. Not stupid.”

“Doriama! How? Why? Wait.”

“Mother told me of the Announcement, and I know you. Even if your father doesn’t.”

A young dwarven woman, veiled and cloaked in camouflage of greys and brown, sat astride a mountain pony. Her gear testified to a long journey.

“If you go alone, Y’Sal, I’ll just have to wait longer for my wedding. I’m here to hasten things along.”

Y’Salnos shook his head emphatically. “Nay! I must do this alone!”

Doriama snorted in humor. “I’ll just get in the way, I take it? Let’s go.”

Last edited by Treesnifer; 10-29-15 at 12:24 PM. Reason: typo correction
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post #5 of 14 (permalink) Old 10-15-15, 06:19 PM
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The Plight of the Immortal
Words:955

Azariah, Herald of Slaneesh, yawned in exagerrated boredom. “Come, scribe, and delight us with your speech. Kar’m will not be joining us, apparently.”

No’ga replied with mirthful laughter. Azariah tried not to wretch at the stink of his rot nor his breath. “Well said, Azariah. I am most interested to here of the pact that will bind our causes together!”

Azariah smelt a familiar taint on the air. The immaterium within the chamber of Everblight transformed and remoulded itself out of thin air until a portal shimmered. The room was a small sphereical chamber, barely enough to inhabit a dozen daemons that could name themselves heralds of the Dark Gods. Nearly the entirety of the chamber was occupied with raised benches meant for a humble audience, but left enough room for a little clearing in the center that was only a breath away.

Kar’m, Herald of Khorne, glared upon the assembled daemons as he emerged from the rift. “Forgive my absence. War without end does demand much of late.”

The Scribe of Everblight cackled maniacally with laughter from the shadows. “Good. We are all in attendance. Please, Kar’m, take a seat.”

The Scribe of Everblight was a miniscule thing, really. A sinewy creature of crystal blue skin propped up by a skeletal frame that once could have resembled a humanoid plaything. Four inky black sockets lined either side of the bridge of its nose, each one gaped open as if they held real tissue between the eyelids. Its hooves clattered with loud thuds against the velvet floors as it strode across the oppressive and claustrophobic room. Two curved horns twisted upward from the skin around the Scribe’s forehead as sharp as the daemon’s maw of fangs. Finally, it was dressed in a flowing white robe trimmed with gold.

“Chosen of the Dark Gods!” The Blue Scribe took center stage in the center of the chamber. In either of his three hands was a mighty tome and in the fourth, an ink quill. “Heartened I am to see you gathered before me. From across the corners of the endless realms, I have called each of you specifically to answer the call of glory. For each of you possess forces close to the forecoming breach in the warp that shall spill out into the mortal world.”

Azariah growled through a wicked smile. “Go on, my friend.”

The Scribe of Everblight nodded and continued. “A mortal world has fallen to the drepedations of chaos. They seek to open gateways once thought lost untold millennia ago. Each of you shall go forth and conquer this world in the name of each of your patrons. But be forewarned, for your victory is not sealed in the annals of fate.”

No’ga’s tone took a more sinister aspect. “What is the catch?”

Kar’m leaned forward and pointed at both of the other heralds. “What else could it be, but the great game? We must slay each other for the prize!”

The Scribe of Everblight raised a hand for silence. “If victory and glory is what you desire, then beware the coming of a new foe. A great Demoness approaches that knows no loyalty to any Gods but herself. She will come with a force of light that will sear all it touches!”

Azariah scoffed. “Who is this upstart plaything? A Demoness you say, how intriguing.”

No’ga roared. “She will wilt before Nurgle’s rot!”

Kar’m merely nodded his satisfaction. “A worthy foe, then. I have no fear of this power from some far-flung realm. I shall go forth and conquer!”

“Were you not listening?” Azariah shot back. “We must conquer this foe together. Fear not, we shall have the aid of the mortals that so desperately seek our aid.”

“About that…” The Scribe of Everblight resumed. “The mortals shall look for signs of the Dark Gods for a time, but once they see the searing light, they shall never look for another sign. This Demoness will steal away all of the Dark Gods’ faithful and they shall rise up against you when you come for them.”

Azariah cackled scornfully. “What an utter inconvenience. But what can we do, but fight? Surely, the Gods are watching us deliberate on what to do about this new power? This new threat to their dominance? We must overthrow the entire world and raze it to ashes rather than let a single stain upon their honor!”

There was another taint in the immaterium again and this time, Azariah bared her teeth because she did not recognize it.

A voice that sounded reminiscent of rushing waters spoke in that very moment. It echoed from the walls of the chamber, from everywhere and nowhere at once. “An inconvenience, indeed. But you must understand, my dear Azariah, it is much better for you to be inconvenienced than myself.”

The Three Heralds abruptly stood to their feet and readied their weapons and claws.

The disembodied voice bristled with thunderous laughter. “No need for a call-to-arms, you would find that a very unwise decision. For, you see, I am the Demoness that this Scribe has spoken of. Each of you are now under my power and influence and can no longer leave this chamber. Should you happen to be curious about an exit, I shall tell you that there is only one. Swear fealty to me: tell me the true names of every soul in your legion. Only then shall I release you.”

The three Heralds roared at the voice. “Never!”

The voice audibly clucked its tongue. “A shame. Not for myself, however, for I shall eventually have what I seek. Should you happen to wait an eternity before I am given my due, then so be it.”

“Evil is relative…You can’t hang a sign on it. You can’t touch it or taste it or cut it with a sword. Evil depends on where you are standing, pointing your indicting finger.”
-Glen Cook, The Black Company


Tales of Heroism and Bravery, in the 41st Millennium and the Old World. Perhaps some Realm Gate Wars in the future .

Gods' Hall (Completed)
https://www.heresy-online.net/forums/...d.php?t=161618

The New Word (Completed)
https://www.heresy-online.net/forums/...d.php?t=121879
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post #6 of 14 (permalink) Old 10-22-15, 05:15 PM
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It ain’t nuffink(1055 words)
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Brother Emund

Skarrunt Magrot hated mornings. No, that was inaccurate, Skarrunt Magrot hated all times of the day and… night. But most of all, he hated being woken up from a deep sleep to start a morning.

“Dis betta be gud?”, he grunted to the shaking runt-servant. He then had a thought, “Na, nufink is dat important,” and he swung his enormous fist around and smashed the runt into the far wall.

His personal bodyguard suddenly entered the room with their weapons raised and axes swinging.
The Faceripper Warboss waved them back outside and then indicated with a casual wave that someone should also remove the mess he had caused.

A large Ork loped in behind them and nodded his respects. As one of the top Nobz in the clan, he had access to the Boss at any time and for whatever reason. Perhaps, he thought, he should have just delivered the message himself instead of relying on others.
He could not help but grin as the broken runt was dragged unceremoniously outside leaving a dark trail of body fluids behind.

“How’s the odds?,” Magrot grunted, pulling on his long leather boots.
“Boss?”
“The odds on me squig “Blood clot”?”
The Nobz was momentarily confused.
“Ahh! The races?”
“Yeah the races. What else would there be?”

The Nobz now understood that his Boss had not been informed of the latest reports and was thinking about the Squig races being held the next day.
“Boss, your Squig is still odds on favourite (as of course it would be), but we ‘av reports of Hoomies.”
“Hoomies?”
“A gang of dem landed not far from ‘ere. Dey is da big one’s wiv all de armour and stuff.”

Magrot’s eyes widened and his face broke into a grin. This might well turn out to be a good day after all. They could have a bit of a scrap with the Hoomies followed by a lucrative day at the races.
He straightened up and wedged his iron helmet onto his head.

“Assemble the Boyz. I have paid gud teef for these races and I ain’t lettin’ no one get in the way. I want dem crushed, smashed, squished and flattened before lunch.”

* * *

Sergeant Martinez rolled to his right and then shuffled backwards into the bushes that lined the river bank. The rest of the scout squad were in all-round defence, their weapons pointing in all directions and covering all approaches.

“It is true,” he said in his deep accented voice. “There is a whole town of the Orks down there. They number at least a thousand. They have settled. There is an arena on the far side and even a rudimentary spaceport.”

A second scout, still young in service but with the face that bore the scars of many conflicts, tapped the screen on his auspex.
“Do we wait or move off to extraction?”
Martinez rubbed his chin.
“I would like to get a look at that arena and see what is going on over there. There is a lot of movement. Ork’s are coming in from all over the place and heading there.”
“Could it be a command centre?”
“I think so.”
“Damn,” said the second scout. “We have movement to the east. Fast moving and heading our way.”
“It is settled then,” Martinez concluded. “We relocate for extraction. That settlement is obviously of some importance to the Ork’s. Call in evac at location Delta.” He signalled to the rest. “We move, single file, double-time.”

* * *

Magrot was a Warboss of some note.. and intelligence. He had sent a horde of fast moving scouts ahead of the main gang, Cragnat Orks, bred for speed and agility. They had slipped behind the marine scouts before they were aware of them.

Martinez was the first to react.

As the first Cragnat appeared in the undergrowth he was shot through the head, the second was winged and fell screaming to the ground.

“Immediate evac I think.” He nodded to the other scout.
A bolter hammered behind him followed by the swish and crump of a rocket.
“Form a wedge.” He ordered and the scouts moved back into a diamond formation facing outwards. “Fire and move. Head for the extraction point.”

Magrot reached the first bodies of his gang and was furious. He swung his war axe in one hand and a huge double-barrelled stormbolter in the other, and immediately charged the small group of marines, bellowing his war cry.
Scout Walton fired his shotgun at him at point blank range and Magrot was knocked backwards. Martinez bore down with his power sword and took off the Warbosses arm.

There was pandemonium as both groups met in a crash of hand-to-hand combat.

At the same time a flight of Stormbirds appeared overhead and unleashed a fury of missiles and heavy weapons into the Orks massed ranks, before hammering the outskirts of the settlement with a reign of fire and death.

Magrot became entangled with his own bodyguard before being knocked heavily to the ground and set upon by more Hoomies with edged weapons and bolter fire.
He remembered the pain he felt, and then saw his own blood arc around him before falling under a mass of bodies.

He saw a Hoomie lying facing him his face torn apart and bloody.

* * *

“Well wots the damage?”, screamed Magrot.
“We won a great victory Boss!”
Magrot drooled and twitched and looked like he was about to explode.
“Da damage! Da damage!”, he raged.
“Boss,” the Nobz shook his head. “Yoose lost yor arm, dats wot.”

Magrot pushed him aside with his good arm and indicated back down towards the settlement.
“Da track yoose dork, da track! Is it still gud?”
The Nobz wiped blood from his mouth and grimaced. Magrot was going loopy in the head. Too much grog and happy weed was turning him insane. The Warboss had lost an arm and several chunks of his torso and was more worried about the arena.
“On second thoughts’ he thought ‘he is well ‘ard.”

“Boss, the arena is not damaged and the Squigs are all accounted for.”
Magrot laughed heartily and placed a paternal arm around his shoulder.
“Now dem Hoomies is sorted, we can git on wiv the real important fings. Da races! Da races!”

.

"Death occurs when a lethal projectile comes together in time and space with a suitable target, in the absence of appropriate armour or protection”


Check out my 40K 'Epic' about the Hunted verses the Inquisition: https://www.heresy-online.net/forums/...98#post2184698


Last edited by Brother Emund; 10-22-15 at 08:05 PM.
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post #7 of 14 (permalink) Old 10-31-15, 06:17 AM
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sorry guys. I've been working a lot lately and moving from the middle of the country to Portland OR. I won't be in this contest. Its been a huge inconvenience but a job is a job. I'll be on next month though.

A good reputation take a long time to build, but only a moment to destroy. Wow, that's deep! Check out the H.O.E.S. short story competition.
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post #8 of 14 (permalink) Old 10-31-15, 12:37 PM
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This is pretty much the first time I've actually had to go in and cut out a lot for one of these. Here you are:

Deep Cover, 1099 words

It was a good day for a drug deal- or so Maks had been told. He didn’t believe it. Number one, there was never a good day in the underhive, and two, there was never a good day when one was an Inquisition plant in this crowd.

A lho-stick dangled loosely from his mouth- he no longer really smoked them, but it was somewhat of a nervous habit. Scratching at the stubble growing in at his chin, he glanced around at the rest of the people in here. A fair few, all armed- his supposed compatriots, here to keep the deal civil.

It was cold down here. An abandoned manufactorum was the venue for today’s business, the heavy machinery gone, cannibalized by the tech-adepts and put to use elsewhere. Debris from the ancient ceiling littered the floor; glass from the lights lay on the conveyors and crunched underfoot. He brushed some of it off the nearest conveyor and sat down, drawing his nickel-plated stub revolver from its holster beneath his left arm. It was a big gun, chambering thumb-sized rounds in a massive cylinder. The barrel was short, pugnacious; Maks looked it over, swinging out the cylinder and making sure it was loaded.

He surveyed the situation. There were a lot of ‘em, but not too many. He knew most of them- he’d spent several months setting this all up. Luckily, pretty much all of these bastards could be written off as just gene-sculpted muscle. That, and guns. And the odd chainfist. Itching to kill, soaring high as an uphive spire on incredible amounts of drugs.

That wouldn’t be an issue, mainly because the buyers in this deal were a kill-team. Arbites, mostly, but headed by Inquisitor Verne, Maks’ boss. It was a sting, the climax to nearly a year of investigation over several planets. It’d be a hell of a thing. Lots of blood, likely.

The primary target: a man, standing over by the crates of stims and surrounded by three bodyguards. Draped in finery, a master-crafted sabre hanging at his side, he appeared young- but according to Inquisitorial records, he was nearing his first century. Juvenat procedures had helped a lot. The man was Jonn Rausten, a star trader, and he’d somehow managed to get a ton of dark eldar drugs- hence why the Ordo Xenos was getting in on this. Rausten had been doing this for several years, and he’d been fairly elusive; when they did get close, his following wasn’t just large, but also hopped up on eldar stims. It had made it hard- it had made it necessary to plant an inside man.

Next to Rausten paced a stick-thin man in a floor-length groxhide coat, snapping his fingers restlessly. That was Caisse, an epsilon-level psyker, and straight up the creepiest bastard Maks had ever been around. Secondary target, likely the reason Rausten had escaped justice thus far. Maks had gone through a hell of an ordeal just to make sure this guy wouldn’t figure him out- a psychic identity-graft, among other things. Incredibly painful- but Maks would get his vengeance for that at some point.

Maks didn’t let himself smile at the thought. Instead he stood, letting his pistol dangle from his hand. People were starting to look restless. He checked the chrono sewn onto the back of his glove- Verne ought to be here any second. Rausten was livening up, and Caisse had even stopped pacing. Rausten’s bodyguards were readying their weaponry.

Seconds ticked by. The men at the entrances had stopped talking. Caisse had stopped snapping. Minutes trickled past. Everyone looked confused.

Everyone but Caisse and Rausten.

Maks suddenly had a very bad feeling. Verne was supposed to be here. These bastards ought to be flat on their backs in pools of their own blood by now. Where was the team?

He cocked his revolver as slowly as possible, so as not to stand out in the silence.

Sound, from the distance- laughing. It got closer, and closer; the sound of a riot gun echoed loudly through the manufactorum as the guards at the entrance readied themselves. Maks brought his revolver halfway up. Whatever this was, it didn’t sound like a kill-team should.

Finally, the doors of the main entrance slammed open. In burst several men, spattered with blood, laughing and joking; Maks recognized them as some of the more trusted killers in Rausten’s pay. They bore suppressed autoguns- must have ambushed the team.

The last man in the group was dragging three others by cords, hands bound. Maks had to suppress a reaction at seeing them- one was Verne. Bloodied, beaten, but unmistakably Verne. The two behind him he didn’t recognize, but they were clad in Arbites armor.

Shit. How had they been found out?

Laughter and cheering broke out, as one of the new arrivals whooped, proudly holding up Verne’s rosette. Maks looked over- Rausten was grinning, and Caisse even had a little smile on his gaunt face.

He had to keep his cover. Couldn’t give it up now. Now they’d need him more than ever. Almost as if in a trance, Maks joined the rest of the thugs cheering the killers.

The first couple brushed past him, wide smiles splitting their blood and soot-stained faces. Maks turned his head to watch them as they jogged over to Rausten. The last one bumped into him; Maks glanced back around, only to find the prisoners’ leads slapped into his hand. The man grinned and slapped him on the shoulder, following his comrades.

“Hey.” Maks started, jolted out of his trance. He looked back around- and it was Rausten. “Hey, you.”

He motioned to himself slightly with the barrel of his revolver, and Rausten nodded. “Yeah. You. Kill them. We’re done here.”

Maks wheeled around once more, coming face to face with his boss. Verne was a short man, not especially remarkable in appearance- except for his eyes, which stood out in a bright emerald. Those eyes were looking straight at him, almost pleading.

The investigation was screwed. They’d have to start over practically from scratch. It’d be much easier if Maks stayed embedded in Rausten’s organization. And it wasn’t like he could save them…. it was either these three died, or Maks died with them.

So- a setback. But less of one if…

Maks pressed his revolver to Verne’s head. The inquisitor didn’t say anything, but he didn’t want to die. Maks could see the emotion in his eyes- but there was no room for emotion here.

He pulled the trigger and spattered all of those emotions across the manufactorum floor.

"You all did see that on the Lupercal
I thrice presented him a kingly crown,
Which he did thrice refuse: was this ambition?
Yet Brutus says he was ambitious;
And, sure, he is an honorable man."

Last edited by HonorableMan; 11-01-15 at 06:50 AM.
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post #9 of 14 (permalink) Old 10-31-15, 11:11 PM
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New masters (1100 words)

Within the ramshackle shelter of a crashed Rhino, hacking coughs draw only inquistive mammals, for thinking souls have forgotten this place.
The coughing fits starts again, this time with more vigour, ended by a curse and words of a language not uttered for generations. I wonder why it takes so long to recognise the voice as my own?:
"You gave me everything...my strength...my honour...my very life.
"I would have ended upon those hell-blackened worlds, had it not been for the pride you showed in us.
"Of course, you did not know it; how could you?
"Merely one day amongst thousands, one solitary glance and half-smile along our ranks. Yet I remembered every second, every nuance, every hair that fell out of place as the hot winds swept across the plain of blasted vehicles."


Remembrance grabs hold of me and refuses to let go: in the fevered dreams brought about by infection, my body shudders with the impacts of injuries long-healed.
Of course, the last weapon sealed my fate just as you hoped it would.
But the apothecaries and He had done their jobs too well and I survived.
Even as green film covered my eyes and I saw my comrades melt, I somehow prevailed.

Finding a shuttle, I left that place of treachery and dishonour, hiding where I must, taking the heads of your sons wherever possible.
'Your sons' I remind myself...No longer 'my brothers-in-arms'...For which Astartes worthy of the name could refer to such decrepit beasts as their 'equal'? Not I.

Spitting further gore upon the black ground, I have welcomed the coming dark for this past decade. There were many who tried to put a stop to me and an equal number who I sought out as potentially suitable opponents, yet I found none worth the trouble.

Memories long submerged bob back to the surface: a smile or a handshake from the best warriors anyone could ever have beside them. True friends now lost to a time mired in heresy and slaughter that nobody else dared to recall.

When I revisit such so-called 'glories', my hands still tremble with the phantom-memory of my discarded bolter's recoil. Or is it from the poisoned bone-ague which slowly seeps like thick oil through my frame; your parting gift to the ones you set adrift?

As though trying to exorcise it in favour of duty, I find my sole happy moment even as my voice burbles with phlegm rising from a dissolving lung:
"Burnt promethium filled the air, yet failed to blot out the stench of rotted corpses, fat with flies.
"The auguries had proven sound: a hard victory, but worthwhile.
"Too many comrades adorn the enemy's murder-pikes, yet did you even care?
"No! You viewed them as merely more mouldering carcasses.
"I could have lost all respect there and then, had it not been for the passion in your eyes.
"You believed in something greater and carried the whole Army with you.
"They did not see your upbringing amongst the savages...could not know your hardships...yet it did not matter. All such things were cast aside in favour of greater achievements. Thus shall it be again.
"They once called me Lucas Veronal...you gave me a more morbid title. And I shall end you.
"You are no 'demi-god', no 'Primarch', just another weak-willed possessed who was found wanting.
"Even if this virus claims my soul, I swear you shall fall, never to rise again."


I pick up my last weapon; the one which has remained with me all my Legion-life.
Even when covered in entrails, there has always been one section or another where the bare silver etching has shone through...the only true companion I have ever known.

Had I cared for such niceties, I would have told myself not to notice my bloody spittle covering the blade; unconscious drool from a mouth that now holds too many teeth to properly close...yet another 'gift' bestowed upon me by your cowardly chem-munitions.

It takes me three attempts to stand. Had it not been for the Rhino chassis, I might never have regained my footing. Even though you cast Him and I aside an age ago, I thank The Emperor for small mercies. When it comes to thoughts of loyalty, you are simultaneously in the furthest recesses of my mind yet blazing bright in the forefront of my psyche.

The blade sings once again in my hands..a shriek of vengeance that was once my army's call at the coming of the dusk.
My grip wavers as strength starts to flee, yet I am thankful that it finds purchase before all is lost.
This shall not be easy, but you taught me resilience in favour of every other trait, so let us see how much I have learnt at your feet.
Sparks and ceramite splinters fly as I gouge out the oath of moment below my hearts; etched at the commencement of our first campaign.

As I bring up it's tip to my forehead, I can barely hear myself think above the weapon's screaming, but I promise aloud:
"You may have signed my death-sentence, yet my reckoning shall begin again soon, for you are not the only patriarch in the cosmos. My saviour, Mal..."

-----
Guided by unseen hands, explorators find a corpse in a deserted town upon an abandoned world:
"The creature was found alone, injuries consistent with the chainsword still clutched in it's...what we are calling 'hands'. From the position of the body and lack of other footprints, it was self-inflicted."
"Why attach it's helmet if it wanted suicide, Medicae?"
"Who cares Captain? It's one less Chaos-lover to worry about."

As his companions turn away, the Captain reaches out an unthinking hand for the silvered blade, somehow pristine despite the ravages of time and bodily decay.
His urgency for theft lends him extra strength and he shatters claws and fingers. Breaking open the dead fist sets off a chain-reaction throughout the kneeling corpse which collapses into dust; a fate that should have befallen it centuries ago.
Yet he pays this no mind and attaches the weapon to his belt, failing to notice the soft red glow from the grip's sensor.
-----

Even bound as I am, caught between the material and ethereal planes and held by another, I curse your name and howl into the space between the stars.
I have you to thank and -one day- names shall be carved into your very chest so that you can never forget the fallen.
Life, plague, even death: all were necessary, yet ultimately proved to be only minor hindrances to my apotheosis. My new servitude.

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?"

Please check out the HOES (Heresy Online Stories) threads and vote for the tales.
More feedback = better stories for everyone.

Last edited by andygorn; 11-01-15 at 10:11 AM.
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post #10 of 14 (permalink) Old 11-01-15, 01:54 AM
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College creeping up me atm, no real time to focus on writing something up as much as I'd love to
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