Day 1, 0600 hours
The Fifth Ace was a shadowy bar hidden in the depths of Solace's market district. A stout metal door kept the worst of Sanction's dregs from the interior, although in truth, Sanction had very few "dregs" to contend with. The Templars' fortress monastary kept most of the criminals off the streets. That, coupled with the near-constant patrols of Templar serfs made the planet of Sanction one of the most safe and secure planets in the Segmentum Pacificus.
0013 knocked on the door. A steel eyeslit in the door was pulled back.
"What's the word?" hissed a voice.
0013 was taken aback for the slightest instant before he realized that the man couldn't see his face under the hood.
"Not a mutant?" guessed 0013, pulling the cloak a little tighter.
The man barked a laugh. "A joker. You're no mutant, I'd warrant."
The bolt slid back, and the door opened. A fat, bearded man stood aside, handing him a stein of cheap beer.
"First one's on the house. Fifth Ace custom."
0013 took the mug and gulped down the lot, giving the glass back to the stupefied man before walking across the bar. The beer made his stomach feel twisted, after a lifetime of gluten extracts and protien bars. He tapped the bar, and the bartender slid another mug across the counter. He gulped down the second, and then ordered the most interestingly named food on the slip of paper passed to him. A waitress passed him a plate piled high with "onion circlets", and he immediately was taken by the taste. A salty, slightly crunchy exterior concealing an odd-tasting center. Glorious.
He drank three more mugs of the yellowish beer and another plate of onions before the bartender tapped him.
"Are you Imperial Church? Otherwise you gotta pay."
0013 stopped eating long enough to pull a handfull of coins from the cloak's pocket. He had combed the street for an hour, picking up several credits' worth of coinage. He had also shaken nearly twenty credits from a box marked "DONATIONS" outside the Biologis building's guard shack before an Arbites had chased him away. He quickly lost the man, but resolved to not touch any more DONATIONS boxes.
The bartender took a few of the coins, and pushed the remainder back to 0013, who pocketed them. The onion circlets were disappearing from his plate with depressing speed, so he picked the rest off the plate and put them into another pocket of the cloak, leaving another coin for the man. He nodded to the bouncer, before heading out into the night.
0013 woke with a start.
His hood was flapping in the breeze wafting down the alley. He tightened the string holding it closed over his face. As he breathed in he caught a whiff of the breeze.
He leapt up just a fraction too late, being grabbed by a large man in a black Biologis uniform who ripped off his hood.
"Nice try, deviant. But the Biologis made me a promise, see. If I get you, they'll let me go. I told myself I'd never rat out another mutant, but still."
0013 was swung around to face the man. His skin was covered in spiny growths, and his eyes had slit pupils. A Rhino surrounded by Biologis security grumbled behind the creature. A balding man with a goatee pushed his way past the guards.
"Nice try, mutant. But this little charade is over. Markus?"
The mutant holding 0013 nodded. "Yessir?"
The balding man pulled a fat pistol from his belt and shot Markus in the back, blowing his guts over 0013's cloaked frame.
"Filthy mutant. Good thing he caught you, though. Guardsmen, seize him!"
The black armored men surged forward, knocking 0013 to the ground. Fists hammered his chest and arms. He felt a surge of triumph as one man tumbled back, a 0013 fist-sized hole through him. He kicked out, feeling a leg break, then hawked a globule of green phlegm at the man who was responsible for most of the pummeling. He laughed for a second, until his face froze with terror. The man stayed upright for precious little extra time before the acid burnt all the way through his head, and he collapsed. A guard leapt on his chest, clamping a metal device over his mouth. Handcuffs went over his entire hands, followed by a chain around his legs and feet.
The remaining guards heaved 0013 upright.
"A good fight, 0013. But the Biologis needs you alive."
The balding man leaned closer.
"If it was my choice, you would not even be alive now, scum."
He leaned over to help up the man with the broken leg, revealing his left side was almost all bionics.
0013 cocked his head, calculating.
"I'm more human then you." he said, his speech distorted by a hissing accent, a result of the augmentations.
The man looked at him like 0013 had called his mother a heretic.
"If you ever say that again, I will kill you without a second thought. I am human. You are a mutant."
0013 blinked. "I'm human. Just "enhanced" by your Biologis."
Bald's face turned red with supressed rage. "Filth! I'll have no more of your lies! Take him away!"
The guard next to 0013 pushed him toward the Rhino.
"Will there be onion circlets in the Biologis building?" he asked.
"I'll see what I can do." said the guard, in a fashion which sounded like he would not.
0013 looped the handcuffs around the man's neck, twisting his hands. A dry snapping noise indicated the man's neck was broken. Bald grabbed at the gun a second before 0013 leapt onto his shoulders like a giant bird of prey, pressing him to the ground. Six yellow eyes bored into Bald's stare.
"If you ever do that again, I will kill you without a second thought." said 0013, taking the bolt pistol from his slack fingers. The chains snapped through as he pulled, and he discarded the pile of broken cuffs next to the man. He slid the pistol into his cloak and pulled the now-ragged hood back over his head before leaping up the side of the buildings, vanishing onto the rooftops.
The balding man looked around at the pile of dead or injured guards, and Markus' body, and spoke into his headset.
"Damnation, but the spooks know how to make em'."
You'll forgive me, but you must be mistaken. I've met your makers, and they don't even know your name...
GIVING CHASE- ORDO HERETICUS FIC (Updated Mar. 19)
Hat in the Ring
Last edited by Dirge Eterna; 11-26-08 at 02:27 AM.