As the drop ship soared over the city and into the higher atmosphere, Gaunt leaned sullenly against the wall, mulling over the news he had been given. Regardless of heresy, he now know exactly who his enemies were. The “Primarch” was sitting across from him and an inquisitor, who he had gathered was named Isaac sat next to him. The inquisitor who had brought gaunt was seated apart from the others. At the other end of the cabin Milo and Isabella lay on stretchers. They were connected to small portable machines witch gaunt assumed was keeping them asleep. The cabin was sparsely decorated as was the custom with imperial equipment. A single embellishment of the sign of the inquisition was carved upon the ceiling. The chairs were slightly too small and uncomfortable, Guilliman took up 3, and the floor was dirty with the tracked dirt and mud from its commanders last campaign.
After a long while, the ship began to show signs of preparing to land. As Gaunt finally felt the jolt of the craft setting down, Guilliman stood up, hunching over in the small cabin. Within a few moments the door opened, and they all walked out onto a landing field. Isaac said some hushed words to the inquisitor who had brought gaunt to the ship. The cloaked figure re-entered the craft, and as they walked out across the field, he signaled for Gaunt to follow him into the ship.
“The Commissar will come with us Isaac.” Said the primarch. “I wish him to witness my faith.”
Gaunt followed, and the ships door closed and it lifted back into the air, evidently taking the 2 unconscious inquisitors with it, presumably to Isaacs’s ship. As the group followed Guilliman out over the busy landing field, filled with now shipless escape craft, the giant figure lead them to the main street which was strangely empty as everyone was occupied with the incident of the ship crashing. Gaunt realized they were in the city built around the Ultramarines Cathedral. Guilliman lead them thru the beautifully decorated city until they reached the gates of the Cathedral. The inquisitors demanded and received entrance for the group and they followed Guilliman to one of the larger buildings. The grounds were an immaculate field of grass smattered with olive trees, and various marines moving from place to place along well constructed pathways. The building Guilliman lead them to was an enormous cathedral filled with marines conducting various tasks of prayer and equipment maintenance. Most of the building was devoted to a single room, the ceiling made completely of stained glass filtering the light into deep blues, and rich yellows.* At the head of the room were 2 statues, one slightly taller than the other. The shorter was of Guilliman with a great sword held in both hands point down; the other was of the emperor standing with his arms outstretched to the heavens. Both statues were perfectly constructed and almost perfectly preserved. There were great lines of pews filled with marines in various forms of prayer; a multitude of different chants filled the hall with a not unpleasant cacophony of faith. Guilliman lead the group down the center of the hall, heading straight for the statues. He paused only for the slightest moment when they first entered to speak.
“Wait here.” He said simply.
They drew a few strange looks from marines wondering why such visitors had come to their stronghold. But their attention was fixed on Guilliman, his intentness on the statues was piquing the interest of some of the surrounding marines. As he finally reached the statues he slowed, and stopped all together. He stood before the statue of the Emperor and knelt. He stayed in that position for what seemed like hours, and then something began to happen. Manny did not notice at first, but those who did were quick to point it out until everyone in the hall was intently watching Guilliman. There was a thin, almost non-existent trickle from the hands of the emperor. Blood was flowing from his palm onto the floor of the cathedral. The trickle was tiny, only perceptible by the reflection of the light from its surface at the right angle. As it touched the ground, one line from each hand, about 3 meters away on either side of the primarch, it began to form intricate lines on the floor spreading out from those points a mosaic began to form around Guilliman traced in blood. Over the span of an hour the picture began to form. It showed an image of 2 great armies locked in battle, both were space marines. One could be seen as the ultramarines, the other as the picture formed more clearly could be identified as the thousand sons. In the background a great gate, carved with images of the emperor and the primarchs, could be seen. This however was only the beginning. The flow was gradually beginning to strengthen, leading out underneath the audience’s very feet. The picture finally filled in and began to expand outward at an exponentially increasing rate. As the ultramarines, the inquisitors and Gaunt all watched, all of the twenty legions, untold other imperial and heretical forces, and as the image finally began to finish, might ships over the scene could be seen exchanging fire. Countless ships, from humble vessels to beautifully adorned flagships to hideous and malformed heretic battleships, fleets of untold size formed above the scene of carnage already lain before them. By now the image reached the walls of the hall and began to crawl up the walls. Torrents of blood poured from both of the emperor’s hands, flowing in unbelievably controlled veins as to create the picture. As a dismayed audience watched, grotesque images began to crawl up the walls of the cathedral. Images that could not be described, pictures of the primal incarnation of humanities flaws and weaknesses, images so grotesque even the most hardy of the marines began to shake. Crawling ever faster up the walls of this holy place were images of chaos wrought into pictorial representation. Those who had faced chaos many times began to recognize the traits of the different spheres of chaos manifesting on the 4 walls of the cathedral. The desecration of such a holy site began to outrage those still able to do anything but cower before the representation of evil. Some began to make their way towards Guilliman, not knowing who he was, thinking that he had brought the taint of chaos into their holy place. But even as some of the onlookers moved to stop him, the blood moving ever faster reached the ceiling.
As the blood reached the end of its journey it began to form a new image. It was unrecognizable at first, very intricate detail was etched out, but no pieces of the picture could be recognized as objects. Then as it crept onward, details were picked out, an eye, a lock of hair, an ear. Soon it was apparent that a face was being created. Not just any face. An angelic face, a face more perfect than anything any of the audience had ever imagined. An unbelievably sad face, one that spoke of unimaginable pain.* As the ever faster flowing blood finished its final detail the perfect visage could be seen in its complete perfection, a perfection that could not be described in words. And as the blood stopped flowing, before the eyes of so many witnesses, a miracle was witnessed. The image moved. Its eyes cast lovingly upon the primarch, a hand of blood flowed from nothingness and reached out to Guilliman. As this happened it came to the watchers attention that the images etched in blood around them were moving, and acting out their battle silently. The hand reached down thru the anarchy of the battle and came to Guilliman. He bent his face to the floor and kissed it. And then for just an instant everyone in the cathedral could hear the words of the emperor. His words more beautiful than the chorus of the most perfect quire
“My son. Your time has passed. You must see that man is reborn.” Spoke the perfect voice, in a tone that made every man watching wish to cry and sing in joy at once.
“I will fulfill my last task, father.” Said Guilliman.
And with that the face of the master of humanity smiled once more and the blood of a thousand saints pealed from the walls and ceilings in a torrent that soaked the forms of every man in the cathedral.
The Primarch walked slowly away from the statues, standing slowly, turning slowly and slowly beginning to walk back down the path towards the door, wading thru the blood that was flowing from the great room out onto the grass of the Cathedrals grounds. As he walked, every marine knelt before him. As he left the building a hundred voices cried in unison.
“Hail the primarch reborn! Hail Guilliman! Father of the legion!”
As Guilliman neared the speechless inquisitor and Gaunt, he smiled to them. His face now glowed with a light of holiness, he seemed somehow more perfect than he had before.
“I hope that today I will have convinced you Ibram Gaunt.” He said. Turning to the inquisitor, he said “Now I am ready, take me back to velonica. I now have one condition however. My chapter will march with me. When we arrive, I will take command of all the forces you have at your disposal. And you will help me achieve my goals. Now take me to you ship, so I may don my own armor, and shed the armor this body would have worn in its future. ”
They were speechless.
By now hundreds of marines were gathered around, having come to investigate the blood spilling from the hall. Their voices cried out in unison.
“Hail the primarch reborn! Hail Guilliman! Father of the legion!”
As Marinas Callgar, commander of the ultramarines, boarded a thunderhawk to be taken to orbit to lead the latest campaign for witch his service was required, a messenger ran breathless to him.“Chapter master! You must! now. You must see with your own eyes this miracle!”
"A true king is never alone, his will is equal to the will of all of his followers."
-Alexander the Great, kind of
Last edited by Col. Schafer; 02-06-09 at 05:59 PM.