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post #1 of 5 (permalink) Old 03-14-08, 11:42 PM Thread Starter
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Default Chronicles of the Nova Dragons

Chapter 1
Trail of the Black Dragons

His footsteps moved swiftly through the underbrush, as his sniper rifle clung loosely to his body armour under his jungle smock camouflage.
The thorns of the unusual trees and bushes pulled and tore his grey pants and sleeves. His groin plates hung loose from his belt for they had been hastily fastened on. His shoulder armour flapped noisily against his arms and chest for they were too large to be connected properly to the rest of his body armour.
The snow white two headed eagle of the emperor that spanned across the black armour over his chest was cleaved in two. Below the crack, blood had flown between the insignia’s feathers and down the talons, coagulating in the cracks.
The vision enhancement goggles he wore over his forehead, hung loosely around his neck. His empty holster clung to his right leg as he hurtled over the rocks and logs.
Quickly he darted around a tree and dove into the nearest bush, cutting his cheek on the thorns as he landed on his stomach, winding him in the process. Slowly he regained his strength and pulled himself up, only to have a sharp pain go across his chest as his wound reopened. Crouching down he swallowed his pain to catch his breath, and listen for pursuers.
Dirt and sweat began to trickle into his wounds, causing them to burn fiercely. His face was smeared red from blood and dirt, the short raven hair was shimmering crimson from an earlier fall. The humidity of the jungle air clung to his throat, starving him of air. Abnormally large canine teeth glinted from his open mouth. When he thought it was safe he closed his eyes, sealing their unearthly red glow from the world for a moment. “What a week.” He softly chuckled trying to forget the horrors of the past two days.
Slowly, he tightened his grip on his bolt pistol and the Elder Banshee’s power blade. Suddenly he heard many footsteps swiftly closing in on his position. The scout wasted no time using them as a good enough warning to start running.


♦♦♦

Three Terrine weeks earlier, outside the unexplored system of Gamma Epsilon .986-A4C in the Tela Sector of the Sagittarius Arm, a rift in space suddenly appeared revealing the Warp, its scarlet clouds swirling as bolts of energy come spewing out.
Slowly a great battle barge emerged from the eye of the rift. The ships six massive twin-linked Lascannons shift and come alive, scanning for anything to fire upon at a moments notice. The black armour plates of the massive ship were scarred and pitted from fierce engagements between the eight races. The Great White Dragon imposed on the battle barges hull, began to glow a pale blue from the rays of the systems dwarf star. The ship slowly drew closer to the systems outer-most planet, a small L-class jungle planet with rocky hills and flowing rivers filled with blue topaz.
The bridge of the Delsayoth was dimly lit with a red glow. The monitors and panels sprung to life as the tech-priests and servitors began to scan the four planets surfaces. Captain Markiem looked at the servitors with restrained disgust.
“Why did the emperor ever give life to those things?” he mumbled “human flesh grown around mechanical parts; just to be used as servants and weapons is incomprehensible. It’s just a waste of a life.”
Suddenly a large armoured hand grabbed his shoulder. “I am glad you keep such thoughts to yourself captain.” boomed a harsh voice. “Lord Kailem! I didn’t hear you enter.” said Markiem as he stumbled from his chair to kneel at the Space Marine’s feet. Lord Kailem was the Lord of the Black Dragons chapter of the Imperial Space Marines.
“I am sorry if my thoughts have angered you my lord.” said the captain while still kneeling before Kailem.
“I just have keen hearing, Captain Markiem. After going through my training and being around ignorant minds as long as I have, you tend to ignore such random thoughts,” replied Kailem coldly as he walked past the captain, his green cape of scales flowing behind him.
The marine strode toward the servitor operating the communications system. “Is there anything you need my lord?” asked the servitor in a soft electronic voice.
“Yes,” replied Kailem, placing his dragon-faced helmet on the control panel beside him. He took a seat beside the servitor. “I need you to activate the intercom for me.”
“As you wish my lord.” chirped the servitor as its mechanical and organic arms began to flail around, hitting buttons and switches.
“Commander Frey and Commander Karas, report to the bridge immediately for briefing.” boomed Lord Kailem.
As silence fell over the bridge time seemed to stand still. The whirling of servos and gears was all that could be heard; it was so deathly quiet that such sounds could drive a man mad.
“Excuse me my Lord,” asked Markiem distantly. “but what is our mission here?”
Kailem gave Captain Markiem a glance of pure loathing, or an urge to kill. “Our mission,” replied Kailem “is to survey the planets for intelligent life, establish mining colonies for their resources and…”
“And to establish a monastery for our recruitment,” interrupted a harsh voice from the doorway.
There stood Second Company’s Commander Elie Fraya, covered from head to toe in power armour, as are all Space Marines. His power pack hummed as energy was sent through his armour and to his power fist, equipped to his left hand, a hydraulic gauntlet five times the size of a normal hand, pulsing with energy capable of ripping through armour and flesh. As he removed his helmet atmosphere sped out in a cloud of cool gases. As the cloud faded it revealed a scarred and grim face; head shaved to accommodate implants, his right eye had been replaced with a bulky pale blue bionic one, which gazed at its surroundings coming to rest on Captain Markiem. The man felt a chill run down his spine as he gazed into the marine’s cold face and even colder mechanical eye. Beside him stood Tenth “Scout” Company’s Commander Sven Karas a gentle faced man, grey hair coming down to his shoulders and a trimmed red goatee. His green scaled cloak, like a pair of great folded wings on his back, flowed soundlessly behind him as he walked in the room.
“You called for us…my lord?” asked Fraya, as he knelt at Lord Kailem’s feet.
“Yes, I need you to organize four surveying parties. Make sure to incorporate the young bloods and the initiates.”
“Yes…my lord.”
“Pardon me my lord,” interrupted a robed figure, “but the planets apparently have a large number of lifeforms over fifteen feet in height. It would be wise to incorporate some marine squads with the young bloods and initiates as well. We do not wish to lose the initiates so soon after the great losses we have recently suffered at the hands of the Eldar.”
“You are right brother tech priest. Commander Fraya, Commander Karas make sure to heed his advice.”
“I shall…my lord.” hissed Fraya. “Yes my lord.” Karas replied in his thoughtful tone. “Oh, Commander Karas, one more thing.” added Lord Kailem. “Yes my lord.” “Make sure to incorporate our best initiate as well, I believe his name was Rayler Tall. He shows much promise. I think he did better in the initiation rituals and examinations then you did Elie. Yes he will go far, especially with that gift of his.”
“Are you positive…my lord?” interjected Fraya. “I don’t believe that the gift you speak of is as benevolent as you believe it to be. The librarians could not penetrate his mind to see if he was tainted. They could not even enter the same room as him. Even the Inquisition stepped in to see if he was a threat. And they could not determine if he was! Ever since we found him on that back water planet he has done nothing but work on his training, which means he is either one hell of a devotee or is searching for a weakness! Also, you yourself said that those whose loyalty to the Emperor is not determined are dangerous…”
“…And un-trust worthy!” boomed Kailem. “But actions speak louder in this case Commander. Scout Tall has received the highest ranking in training missions in over a thousand years! As long as he remains loyal to me, he will remain loyal to the Emperor!
“Yes but…!”
“…But nothing! If you question his loyalty to the Emperor then you question mine, or did you forget Elie, who persuaded the Inquisition to allow him to continue with his training without passing their tests!”
“I …I apologize…my lord. I will not question your decision on Scout Tall again.”
“Get those teams ready.” Lord Kailem said coldly.
“Yes…my lord” replied Fraya, as he walked to the intercom system. “Marine squads one through six of the second company, report to the Main Hall for your mission briefing.”
“All initiates and young bloods are to report to the great hall as well.” continued Karas.

♦♦♦

In a small room, lit only by candles, a man knelt in front of a table adorned with relics of his past. To his left sat a battered and scarred helmet of an Imperial guardsman. On his right lay a white dress, torn and stained with the blood of its former owner, and in front of him sat a black gem with a silver flaming wolf inlaid into the stone. Behind all this on the wall hung a charred photo, framed in ebony, of a young man in a Imperial Guardsman’s uniform holding onto a woman in a white dress with her arms around a girl wearing a black and silver necklace, and sitting in front was a young boy, with the largest smile of all of them, his raven black hair blowing in the wind.
The man’s raven black hair was cut short, and his face was clean shaven. He bowed his head as images of his past came screaming to his eyes, his hands gripped his knees. His lower right arm and hand were covered in a black carapace leaving his fingers with claws. His pinkie finger had mutated into a claw protruding out from his wrist to his elbow. When the claw was extended, it appeared to be a blade held by the hand. Suddenly a gust of wind came in, blowing out all the flames of the candles. The man slowly raised his head toward the door. There stood a young man in his early twenties. He was in full Scout uniform of plated torso armour and shoulder guards. His gear and weapons where in perfect order, as what you would expect from a new Scout Marine initiate eager to please the Lord Commander, in order to become a full fledged Space Marine. His short orange hair blazed in contrast to his black armour in the florescent lit hallway. His emerald green eyes shone bright from his pale face.
“Rayler come on, get your s:Hear lies Censor 1: together and make sure your armour’s straight. Commander Fraya of the Second Company and old Grandpa Karas are giving us a mission briefing in the Main Hall!” Joshuwa Staingerd said excitedly as he turned and left quickly.
“Joshuwa wait!” cried Rayler as he scanned the door with his glowing red eyes. Rayler met Joshuwa when they both joined the Black Dragons at the age of six. Joshuwa was still as enthusiastic as he was then, always the clown of the group trying to get Rayler to smile, but to no avail.
“Damn hyperactive idiot, he’s going to get himself killed with that kind of attitude.” groaned Rayler as he took the necklace from the table and put it on. Quickly he gathered the rest of his gear and headed out the door.

♦♦♦

The main hall was a large cathedral-like room in the center of the ship, capable of holding over one thousand and five hundred marines, scouts and initiates for mission briefings and prayer. Commander Fraya stood on the podium at front of the room. Beside him was Commander Karas.
“Men,” began Commander Fraya, “you are to be split up into reconnaissance teams to survey the four planets of this system for human-based civilization, and to begin training the young bloods. This is a basic reconnaissance mission, so you don’t have to worry too much about fire fights, but still, there are large creatures on most of the planets, so be on your guard. Now, Commander Karas will tell you who is going where, Commander.”
“Thank you Elie” said Commander Karas. “Marine squads one through three, are to accompany Scout squads five to nine to the planet closest to the system’s star. Marine Squads four to five are to accompany scout squads two and ten on the second planet. Marine Squad six will go with scout squads one, three, and four to the third planet. And finally I will accompany the initiates to the fourth planet. Is that clear, men?”
“SIR, YES SIR!” cried the ensemble.
“Oh, and on a final note, the first Scout to set foot on the planet gets to name it. Now, move out and report to the drop pod cannons and prepare for launch.
As the crowd shoved past him, Rayler stood there puzzled. “Why would the Commander send just the four of us with him to the planet without support? Oh well no need to question his decision for now.” he thought as he left the hall.

♦♦♦

The Space Marine’s main form of quick reinforcements and tactical scouting incursions are the Drop Pods. These large projectiles are launched from the bottom of a Battle Barge with deadly accuracy landing within ten meters of their target area. The Drop Pods can carry a load of ten Space Marines or Scouts to a living arsenal know as a Dreadnought. The Drop Pods can control there trajectory if hit or knocked off course with the use of the five fins on top of the massive rocket and multiple compressed air jets on its sides. To make the landing survivable, the bottom of the Pod has multiple smaller rockets that activate one thousand feet from the surface of the target and then does five second bursts afterward for fifteen seconds to slow the Pod down for a “softer” landing (Of course you could still get whiplash if you are not strapped down). Each side has a large door, which all simultaneously fall to the ground at the time of impact to allow for quick departure. As well, the six sides can all detach from each other to allow a Dreadnought to disembark.
The inside of the initiates’ Drop Pod was lit by small dim lights and monitors. Rayler stood staring at the Pod, still lost in thought.
“Dropped your guard.” yelled Joshuwa suddenly as his metal boot collided with the back of Rayler’s skull. “You dick.” groaned Rayler from under Joshuwa.
“What’s bothering you man” Inquired Joshuwa as he helped Rayler to his feet. “I didn’t hit you that hard, did I?”
“Hmm, No it wasn’t you” said Rayler as he felt the back of his head. “I was just wondering if Grandpa Karas has something else in store for us.”
“Come on, do you think that Grandpa Karas would go to a hostile planet with us unprepared?”
“Yeah, you’re probably right Josh.”
“I know I’m right,” said Joshuwa taking a heroic stance, “and besides the first one on the planet gets to name it.”
“You’re on!” cried Larem Kaien, an eccentric man with eyes the colour of ice and hair the shade of a desert. “I’m going to be the one to name that planet.”
“Really, And how are you going to beat me when I am sitting right beside the door?”
“There are six doors, you f:Hear lies Censor 2:ing idiot! One for each side.” exclaimed Larem.
“Grow up you two,” sighed Kiel Seran, the quiet laid-back loner of the squad. His chiselled features and brown hair made him the most desirable man from his home world. However whenever people got a good look at his face they quickly turned heel and ran because his eyes were a dark brown, so dark that they made him look possessed. At the age of sixteen he joined the Black Dragons.
“That’s enough of that” spoke Commander Karas. “Get into formation and check your equipment. Staingerd, is that shotgun of yours clean?”
“Cleaned and polished sir.” chirped Joshuwa.
“Excellent Joshuwa, Seran, how’s that bolter?”
“Everything’s in order sir.” replied Kiel sorely.
“Kaien, Is that sniper rifle configured?”
“Yes sir. All gauges have been check and the lenses have been cleaned.” replied Larem.
“Tall, is your sniper rifle good?”
“Yes sir. I’m ready.”
“Good. Since this is a special occasion I have a gift for you” exclaimed Commander Karas as he dropped the bundle he was carrying on the floor.
“Special occasion sir?” inquired Rayler as he stared down at the bundle examining it.
“Yes Tall, this is your squad’s last mission as initiates. After this you’ll all be full Battle Brothers. Go ahead and grab one. And keep it close, for it will serve all of you well throughout the rest of your life.”
Rayler pulled from the bundle a two foot long combat knife and sheath. Methodically he strapped it to his belt as the others rushed up to grab one.
“Thank you, Commander” Rayler said with what was as close to a smile he would let through.
“Think nothing of it. All Black Dragons receive them on their first missions as Battle Brothers. Though I don’t think you’ll need to use it much considering where you’re headed in life Rayler. Being one of the few with the gift of the Dragon Claws is a great honour that some will look upon with envy.” spoke Karas as he eyed the other scouts.
“What?” inquired Joshuwa.
“Now strap in we’re about to launch.”

♦♦♦

After an intense drop and hard landing Rayler arose from his seat only to be shoved back down into it again as Joshuwa and Larem ran past him to the only open door, getting stuck in the frame.
“Out of my way f:Hear lies Censor 3: face!” snarled Larem. “I’m naming that planet!”
“F:Hear lies Censor 4: you! I’m going to name it!” yelled Joshuwa.
“This is going no where,” sighed Commander Karas, “Rayler would you be so kind.”
“Yes sir” Said Rayler as he walked up behind the two stuck in door, and with his clawed left arm gave the two scouts in the door one solid punch Larem and Joshuwa where sent flying five feet forward hitting the ground with a loud thud and a cloud of dust.
“That’s better,” Karas chuckled, “Now Seran what should this place be called?”
“WHAT!?!” cried Joshuwa and Larem simultaneously.
Kiel sat on a rock ten meters away taking in all the vegetation and sounds of the planet. “How about ‘Idiot Prim’ after its current minority population” He replied.
“Ha-ha, jerk.” remarked Larem as he got up to dust himself off.
“Come on man, that name will not be accepted by the Librarium and you know that.” said Joshuwa as he sat up to look at Kiel.
“Oh, and what do you suggest? Planet Staingerd.” said Kiel callously.
As the trio argued amongst themselves Commander Karas turned to Rayler with his grandfatherly grin and asked? “What would you call it Rayler?”
“Echisna,” he replied solemnly, “after my mother. The rivers remind me of her eyes.”
“Hmm. Kiel, how about Echisna as its name” Commander Karas hollered?
“What ever,” Kiel sighed as he got down from his defensive position on the rock, “and I was just about to win my battle with these two.”
“Oh well maybe next time” Suddenly Karas changed his tone to a more commanding one. “Now get this place set up as a base of operations, Tall, you and Seran get the equipment from the drop pod. Staingerd and Kaien scout the surrounding area one kilometre, and set up a sensor grid. I wanted this done sixty minutes ago.”
“YES SIR!” the squad yelled in unison and rushed to their duties.
Five days slowly passed by, Karas and the initiates surveyed five hundred kilometres of the surrounding terrain for civilization only to come across a pack of lizard-like dogs, one fifteen foot tall bird with a crown of thorns, and one giant, hungry plant. Believing the planet to be uninhabited they disassembled the security grid and prepared for a Thunder Hawk troop carrier to come in two days.

♦♦♦

A band of Orks trudged through the dense forest. The twelve of them had been walking for nine days barely stopping for food and water.
“Oi, Shurgo git y’er lazy arse up ‘ear and look at dis” cried the Ork Nob in his rough Orkish dialect, as he trudged through the jungle vegetation to an open clearing.
“Ya boss, wach ya want” said the closest green skin?
“Wach ya tink made dat burna pit?” the Nob asked the smaller Ork as he pointed to the fire pit in the clearing.
“Did this grot liker git us lost agin?” erupted a shout from the end of the pack.
“Oo said dat!” hollered the Nob as he brandished his Ork Choppa. “I’m du’ Big Boss of you lot now, so ya listen to me or I’ll chop ya up real good!”
“Yuz only the boss cuz you tried to kill Big Boss Zar’lug Guard Crushar” came another shout from the group. “Now wez out oh the big village cuz of it.”
“Shut up you lot. There’s some’n bout dat burna pit. Don’t look like one ah ours” said Shurgo.
“Oo’s is it den?” one of the mob cried
“Looks like… Humies!!” he cried.
“Humies ‘ear, dat gives me a great ideer. If we kill du humies and take dair shotas and zappas den we can start a Wahhhh to kill Zar’lug. Den I get to be ‘Big Boss’ of de ole planet!” cried the Ork Nob. “Oo’s wid me!”
“WAHHHHHHH!” cried the band of Orks as they all ran into the forest waving their choppas and shotas, heading towards the scouts camp.

♦♦♦

Rayler sat in front of the fire. Across from him Joshuwa poked at the coals with a stick. Larem was cleaning his sniper rifle as Kiel lay on the ground staring at the stars. Commander Karas sat reading a book he brought with him from the library of the Delsayoth.
“Hey Rayler, where are you from? You know, originally” Joshuwa asked quietly? “I won’t tell anyone. Its just I’ve never heard a name like that?”
“I’m originally from…” but before he could finish his sentence a shot erupted from the bushes entering Joshuwa’s head, causing it to explode in front of Rayler. Stunned, Rayler sat there staring at Joshuwa’s corps. He finally came to when Commander Karas opened fire on the bushes. Jumping behind the supply crates Rayler took cover from in coming fire.
“What the hell happened?” cried Kiel as he took cover beside Rayler.
“Joshuwa’s been shot, that’s what happened!”
The Orks burst from the foliage and stormed the squad’s positions. Rayler drew his bolt pistol and opened fire into the horde as it charged forward, killing two of the beasts. Commander Karas engaged the Orks in close combat with his power sword, slaying three in one swing. “Where’s Larem?” cried Rayler. “I don’t know, I say him run towards the drop pod” Replied Karas.
Suddenly Larem jumped out from behind the drop pod. With a feral cry Larem opened fire, easily taking down three of the Orks with his assembled rifle. “Larem, behind you” Rayler shouted only to see his friend be decapitated by the Ork Nob.
In a rage Rayler drew his combat knife and extended his claw. Rayler charged towards the Ork Nob only to have Karas step in front of him. “Rayler help Kiel with the others Xenos, this one is mine!”
“S:Hear lies Censor 5: Kiel” Rayler thought as he turned to see that he was pinned by two Orks from behind a barricade across from the fire pit.
Rayler ran over to the Orks barricade, taking cover beside them apparently unnoticed he waited for a chance to strike. When Kiel toke cover from the next volley of fire he noticed Rayler, as he reloaded his bolter Kiel motioned for Rayler to go around behind the Orks, as Rayler made his move an Ork threw one of its stick boomas behind the other barricade. A few seconds later Kiel’s body was hurled over the barricade by the explosion, landing in a heap a few feet in front of the Orks.
“Ha ha ha, take dat ya stink’n humie” the brute giggled.
Rayler took his chance to exact his revenge on the Ork. Jumping out from his position he gave a cry of pure rage, charging the green skins. With his combat knife Rayler impaled the Ork that threw the booma. As he spun around to strike the other Ork he felt a sharp pain in his chest. Rayler looked down to see the Orks chopa sticking out of his armour. The great cleaver like sword had penetrated his armour and rib plates, as blood began to flow he saw that his claw had got caught in the hilt of the chopa, stopping it from killing him outright. With a big tusked grin the Ork laughed, “Now watch yous guna do humie, yuos cut in two.”
“Not quite, ugly,” as he freed his claw, slashing the Ork’s throat. The Ork fell backwards clutching its neck. As it laid there gurgling curses at Rayler, he bent down beside its head and said, “Never assume someone’s dead until you see blood in their mouth. And you have a lot of it right now.” Then he thrust his knife into the Orks skull killing it outright. After pulling his blade out and cleaning it of blood, Rayler began to look for his commander and the Ork Nob.

♦♦♦

Commander Karas and the Ork Nob fought viciously from behind the drop pod, matching each other strike for strike.
“You shall fall this night upon my power sword, foul Xeno!” Commander Karas cried as he kicked the Ork in the chest, causing it to stumble backwards. Seeing an opening, Karas swung his blade up to slash his blade into the Nob’s chest.
Quickly the Nob rolled out from the Commander’s next blow, regaining its balance it laughed as it looked past Commander Karas. “Bring it on humie, I’ll take dat powa blade from yur chopped up body!” threatened the Nob.
Rayler came running around the corner, his face and the broken white eagle across his chest covered in blood. He watched as he saw the Ork Nob stand and taunt Karas, suddenly another ork charged Karas from behind and thrust its blade deep between the plates of Karas’s back armour. Rayler could do nothing but watch as his mentor was felled by an attack from behind. The little ork began to laugh “Bet dat great Spase Mareen didn’t spect dat.”
“Dat was my foght, ya git!” the Nob hollered as he went towards Karas to collect his prize. “What so great bout dis powa blade, it all ready broke,” the Nob laughed as he brought his blade down upon the power sword shattering it. “See, humie yous blade not so great now.” It snarled as it kicked Karas.
“Yous are the strongest bo…” but the little Ork’s sentence was cut short as a combat knife flew into its skull, killing the Ork where it stood.
“Hey you, overgrown, f:Hear lies Censor 6:ing ugly excuse for an ork!” Rayler hollered, “There is still one of us left!”
Enraged by this blatant insult and lack of respect, the Ork Nob charged toward Rayler, hollering at the top of his lungs and waving its great chopa above its head. With his left hand, Rayler tightly griped the hilt of the chopa and began to pull. As the Ork Nob drew closer and closer, Rayler could feel the blade begin to loosen from its place in his chest. The second the Ork was about to drop its chopa upon him, Rayler pulled the blade from his chest. Blood spewed from his chest and flew from the blade. With all his rage he turned the chopa and drove it deep into the side of the Nob. Keeping his grip on the hilt, Rayler flung himself past the great Ork. Spinning his hand around on the hilt, Rayler pulled himself back towards the Nob thrusting his right arm past the left side of the alien’s neck. The Ork ran a few more yards before crashing to the ground as its head lay a few feet behind it.
Rayler pulled himself up and ran over to Commander Karas. Most of the colour had left the old man’s face as his green cape soaked up the blood from his wound.
“Commander,” Rayler hollered, as he drew closer to his mentor. As he propped up the fading man he asked “Do you think you’ll be able to recover sir?”
“I fear not Rayler,” whispered Karas as his face twisted with pain, “Kiel, did he make it too?”
“No Commander. I am the only one left.”
“Then,” gasped Karas as he struggled for air, “send a distress signal to the Delsayoth and leave. Take what ever you can carry with you and run. There are sure to be more of them they always patrol… in great numbers.” His voice began to fade as his life dwindled. “You must survive… so that the chapter… can at least… have one more brother… to fight alongside it.”
“Yes Commander” Rayler said as he lowered the corpse of Karas back down. Rayler then unhooked Karas’ shoulder armour and attached them awkwardly to his own. Working quickly he gathered his bolt pistol and sniper rifle. He fastened his camouflage smock around his neck and placed his vision enhancement goggles on his forehead. From the drop pod Rayler activated the distress beacon. Taking the extra ammo and medical supplies from his fallen comrades, he placed them in his backpack. He gathered little food expecting to hunt while he was on the run. Before he left, Rayler walked over to the Ork that killed Karas. Putting his foot on the alien’s head, he pulled out his combat knife and crushed the Ork’s skull before running into the jungle.
As Rayler vanished into the thicket, shadows began to move along the jungle’s edge. Five slender figures stepped from the brush, their golden armour and midnight blue helmets shone in the star light, chameleon cloaks over their backs shifting colours as they entered the clearing. Walking without a sound, the cloaked figures walked up to the drop pod, as one of them entered the vessel the others took up defensive positions out side, keeping watch through their Long Rifles (basically an advanced alien sniper rifle).
“Did you see how that one human fought?” one alien asked the others in his soft elegant voice.
“Yes, it was quit unusual for a space marine” one of them replied.
“I have not seen the Black Dragons fight in such a manner,” remarked another, “and they have a unique style already.”
“What do you think we should do Faribin” the fourth alien asked?
“We may have to alert the Spiritseer of this human.” The one within the drop pod replied. “He has sent for a ship to come and evacuate him. He has also activated a tracking device upon him. The transmission is being received by this drop pod.”
“What shall we do about the human then” inquired the second alien?
“We will fallow him” replied Faribin as he emerged from the vessel. “But before that, we will send a message to Spiritseer Thlynn. She will be interested about what has transpired hear.”
“And what about the humans looking for him” asked the forth? “They will most likely find our camp in the process of searching.”
“They will not find him,” Faribin replied as he took a haywire grenade from his pouch and tossed it into the drop pod, “without our help.” As the Eldar Rangers fled from the drop pod to take cover, the grenade began to charge up. Giving a shrill electronic scream the grenade discharged, sending a magnetic shockwave through the drop pod’s systems, rendering the vehicle useless. As the night drew on the Rangers piled up the Orks and set them ablaze, the remains of Commander Karas and his Scouts were placed in a neat line, facing the sunrise, by the drop pod. Before the Eldar left to fallow their prey, a sonic emitter was placed beside the fallen marines so as to prevent wild animals from desecrating them. As silently as they had appeared, the Rangers vanished into the jungle.

♦♦♦

As morning broke, the sun slowly crept over the jungle bringing the planet to life, as if the previous night never occurred. Rayler ran throughout the night not stopping once to rest, his chest throbbing with pain as he pressed onward. Groggy from blood loss and running full tilt all night he began to slow and stumble over roots. Pushing himself onward Rayler approached the edge of the jungle. Bursting from the foliage, he found himself on the beach of a waterfall fed lagoon. Rayler moved toward the water tripping over a log. As he rolled over onto his back, Rayler laid their finally deciding to rest. Looking up at the tree tops he saw what appeared to be figures sitting among the branches. Believing they where hallucinations, as he proceeded to prop himself up against the log Rayler placed his knife beside him at the base of the log., “I guess I’m safe now” said Rayler letting his eyes close slightly. Slowly he faded off into half sleep. (Half sleep is a state a Space Marine can achieve thanks to an implant in their brains. The Space Marine shuts down half of their brain so it can rest while the other half keeps aware of the surroundings. This is used only on long campaigns when imminent danger is every where.)



Time seems to slow to a crawl when in half sleep, objects and shapes become colours blending into one and other, sounds grow louder and muffled, movement is almost none existent as your body becomes heavy and numb. The only thing that remains constant in this state of half sleep, are dreams and nightmares.

♦♦♦

The cold spring air swept over the hills as the snow began to melt under the sun’s rays. A small imperial settlement lay hidden in the shadow of a mountain, acting like a great shield that kept them safe from most of the harsh winter storms. At the edge of the city sate a small imperial dwelling. Inside a woman went about her motherly duties getting her son ready to play out side, as her husband cleaned his Guardsmen’s armour and Laz-rifle, while their daughter worked on her school assignments in her room. As the boy kissed her check she smiled and waved as he went out the door and into the hills. As the boy reached the top of the largest hill he stood there gazing at the mountain, he felt the wind stroke his face gently with her cold hands and ruffle his raven hair. Carried by the wind, a young girl’s voice could be heard singing a strange yet familiar song seaming to span the mountains and time. To his right, out of the corner of his eye, the boy saw some one standing a few feet away from him. Turning he saw a little girl with long red hair and pointed ears, the owner of the voice. In her hands was a little gold and blue ball. Throwing the ball to him, the girl smiled. The two began to play catch; they played for what seemed like hours till the sun began to set. Suddenly a shattering scream broke the joy of their playing. The boy looked vigorously to see where it came from, turning around he saw the city burning with flames of blue and violet. As the boy turned to his new friend he stopped suddenly, frozen in place eyes widened in horror.
Standing in the place of the little girl was a Chaos Space Marine Sorcerer, his armour adorned with trophies he had claimed in his quest to serve his warped masters.
The six curving horns on his helmet pulsed with energies from the warp as his staff corrupted the land he stood on. His black and gold armour was etched with the faces of countless tormented souls. The Sorcerer’s midnight robe brushed the ground as he knelt down to the boy, his violet eye lenses pulsed with dark energies. The boy stared into the Maine’s eyes, seeing visions of his mother and father being slain by the hands of an unknown assailant. Shadows began to envelope the boy from all around him as screams of pain and slaughter entered his ears, sending him spinning into a red whirlwind of fear, pain, and rage.
Rayler jolted forward, shaken by the events in his dream. Rayler put his face in his hands, taking a couple of painful deep breaths. He looked down to see blood flowing from his chest again, reopened from his traumatic dream. Rayler reached over to his bag, and pulled out his med kit. Unclasping his armour he began to tend to his wounds. After wrapping himself in bandages, Rayler put on his vision enhancement goggles to check the chronometer inside. “Ten a.m.” he muttered as he stood up. Placing his goggles around his neck, Rayler strode over to the water’s edge. Placing his hands in the cool water, Rayler mulled over the visions in his dreams. “Most of that was familiar” he muttered to himself as washed his hands and his face of blood. “The girl was a new twist, but what dose it mean.”
Off in the distance soft singing could be heard as if carried by the wind. “I recognize this song” Rayler thought to himself. Listening intently he crept towards an embankment that sheltered another part of the lagoon from his view. Getting down on his hands and feet Rayler crawled up the bank, peering over the other side he was amazed at what he saw, an Eldar encampment along the other edge of the lagoon. Placing his goggles back over his eyes Rayler stared intently at the camp, Rayler saw the entire enemy force consisted of Eldar from the Iyanden Craftworld, mainly Howling Banshees (elite female worriers specializing in close combat guerrilla tactics), and Wraithguard (Wraith bone constructs with an Eldar soul stone encased within). As Rayler gazed on he heard the singing again, looking around he saw her, an Eldar with long red hair, bathing in the lagoon and singing softly. Rayler leant in to hear her words better, only to have a twig snap under his weight. The Eldar woman turned around and gazed at the wounded scout, lifting her arms in his direction, she formed a whirlwind of psychic energy in her hands. “This is going to hurt” Rayler thought as the psychic blast was released in his direction. Throwing his arms over his face he braced himself for the impact. A few seconds passed, Rayler lowered his arms from his eyes to look for the blast that should have thrown him backwards. The trees to his left and right were stripped of their leaves. The grass in front of him had been torn from the ground and lay strewn upon his lap. Rayler turned his head to look behind him he saw a defined path of grass and greenery bordered by bare earth. Puzzled Rayler turned to face the Eldar Seer, only to watch her swimming to shore as Banshees ran along the beach towards him. “Oh s:Hear lies Censor 7:!” yelled Rayler as he turned and ran down the bank towards his gear. Grabbing his broken armor and equipment clasping it on, Rayler ran into the jungle brush.
His feet carried him over logs and rocks, trying to out run his pursuers, to no avail. Foot steps began to close in on him, as he turned his head to judge his distance from them, one of the Banshee’s gave a loud psychically charged shriek in an attempt to disorient him, but to no avail. Trying to understand why the shriek had no on effect him, Rayler continued to run with out regard to where he was going. Suddenly a Banshee appeared on his right. As her sword came down, Rayler dropped to the ground and slid under the attack. Getting up quickly, Rayler turned right and ran past the Banshee ignoring her shouts toward him.
Running even faster than him the Banshee soon was on Rayler’s tale again, her warrior sisters far behind her. Looking over his shoulder and seeing the Banshee’s persistence, Rayler then ran head long at the largest tree in front of him. Suspecting nothing the Banshee followed him step for step. The moment Rayler was with in three feet from the base of the tree, he jumped towards it. Ignoring the thorns on the bark, Rayler kicked off of the tree and speared the Banshee in the stomach. Rolling on the ground from the blow the two of them hit their head on a large rock formation protruding from the ground. Rayler rose from atop the Banshee, bleeding from the blow to his head. As he wiped blood from his eyes he gazed down at her. Rendered senseless the Banshee lay on the ground groaning. Rayler soon noticed his combat knife was missing. Looking around he found it lay upon the rock, broken. Picking up the pieces he quickly stuffed them inside his backpack. Rayler pulled out his camouflage smock, throwing it over his backpack, and fastened it around his neck. As he turned to leave he wiped more blood from his face, looking at the unconscious Banshee he wondered, “What’s so different about us?”, he then looked at her power blade, bending down to take the weapon from the alien’s hand, as he grabbed the blade he felt a grip around his wrist. “What do you plan on doing with that Human?” asked the Eldar Banshee in a tone of anger and fear. Looking at the Banshee, Rayler gave her a solemn look, “I am truly sorry” he replied before punching her in the face with his right fist, breaking her helmet, “but I need this.” Rayler stood up and began to run into the jungle without looking back.
Running from bush to bush for what seemed like hours, reopening his wound at one point, Rayler began to feel the effects of his endeavour through the jungle. As blood poured from the wounds on his head and chest, his vision began to blur from lack of the crimson fluid. “If I’m going to die” he thought as he stopped in his tracks, “I am going to die fighting.” Turning to face his pursuers, Rayler began to gasp for air as the pain in his chest, head and arm began to sap the last of his strength. He watched as the Banshees burst through the thicket and surround him. They stood there staring at him, shifting their weight and grasping their swords with both hands, intent on making the first strike. Before the Eldar could move, Rayler raised the Banshee’s power blade toward them, only to roll his eyes back and collapse, slipping into darkness.

♦♦♦

Faribin and his rangers sat in the trees watching the Scout as he slept. “You would think he would have died from that wound on his chest by now,” the second Ranger said to Faribin. “Not really,” he replied, “Space Marines have an implant in their chest which creates a special enzyme that latches on to their blood. When exposed to atmosphere it creates temporary scar tissue.”
“That sounds like a very useful ability,” the fourth ranger said.
“Yes but it doesn’t stop blood flow altogether,” interjected the first Eldar. “He is still bleeding.”
As they sat and watched something moved in the bushes, slowly a creature emerged from the jungle. Standing fifteen feet tall, the creature looked like a centaur with the torso of a gorilla attached to the body of a lion. A long shaggy brown fur mane ran from its head and going down the back to the tip of its tail. What appeared to be fingers were in fact talons, shaped like the claws of a sloth. The creature sniffed the air, searching for its prey. Spotting the Scout it strolled over to him. Bending down it sniffed at his chest; investigating further the creature placed the tips of its claws slightly into the crack in the Scouts armour. As it pulled the tips out from the crack, they shone with crimson fluid. Opining its mouth the creature extended a long thin tongue and licked its claws, apparently liking the taste. The creature bent down over the Scout’s chest to lick up some more. A blast of light went across the creature’s nose. As it stood more flashes came out of the trees, turning the sand into glass as each hit ground. The creature began to run for the trees. Before it could begin to climb the trees, a flash made its mark, hitting the creature in the right eye. The creature collapsed and lay at the foot of the tree, dead.
Faribin lowered his Long Rifle, still smoking from his last shot. Looking over to the scout he saw that he was still breathing softly, as if nothing had happened. “Let us move the body away from here,” he said quietly, “so as not to arouse the Scout’s suspicion.”
As elegant shadows, the rangers descended from their tree top. Dragging the creature deep into the foliage, Faribin noticed the scout begin to stir. “Quickly, we must fade into the trees” he ordered as he dashed past the others. Watching intently Faribin waited, wondering what Spiritseer Thylnn would do when the Scout arrived at their camp. Suddenly, across the wind he heard Thylnn’s voice singing her favourite tail. “Uh oh,” he thought “she’s taking her morning bathe. I will not allow this human to gaze upon her beauty.” But before he could move he saw the Scout had already reached the embankment. “We have to stop him” Faribin cried earnestly.
“Why?” inquired the fourth Ranger as he gripped Faribin’s wrist to stop him.
“Because Thylnn is bathing at this moment,” he said with concern.
“We know how you feel about her Faribin, but you can’t let your emotions blind you,” the second Ranger said harshly, “Besides the Scout is the one we should help.”
“What?” Faribin said, as he stared confused at his companion.
“Haven’t you noticed the psychic build up recently” the second Ranger said as he pointed at the scout. Faribin turned to see the Scout engulfed in a whirlwind of psychic energy. Fearing the worst, Faribin could do nothing but stare at the psychic storm.
With the tempest past, Faribin and his squad dropped their arms in disbelief. Sitting in front of the only patch of greenery left was the Scout, completely undamaged.
“How in name of Kaela Mensha Khaine did he survive that unharmed?” said the first Ranger looking at his comrades for an answer. (Kaela Mensha Khaine is the Eldar god of war)
“I do not know,” replied Faribin, “but we must move. He approaches quickly.” The Eldar Rangers moved aside as they watched the Scout run towards them, stopping only to collect his gear. A few seconds later the Rangers saw why the scout was running, poring over the embankment the Banshees were a wave of gold and midnight blue. As the parade flew past them the Rangers gave chase. “We have to stop him from killing any of the Banshees,” Faribin hollered over his shoulder.
“Take to the trees, we will cover more ground faster that way,” the first Ranger shouted. As the rangers swung upwards upon their grappling lines, they saw the scout narrowly escape one of the Banshee’s strikes. Motioning to follow, Faribin’s squad gave chase closely watching the two. “Faribin,” the fourth Ranger shouted, “I think that is your sister, Glyana.” Faribin looked closely as he saw the brunet Banshee thrown to the ground as the scout speared her. Stopping close to their position Faribin watched as he saw the Scout strike his younger sibling and run off into the jungle. “You follow him,” he ordered the other Rangers. “I’ll take care of Glyana.”
As Faribin walked out into the clearing, the other rangers swung back up into the tree tops upon their grappling lines. Faribin knelt down beside his sister and lifted her into his arms. Removing her broken helmet he saw how beautiful she had become.
Glyana slowly opened her eyes “Faribin,” she said softly, “what are you doing here?”
“Taking you back to the encampment dear sister,” he replied as he stood up.
“No,” she interjected as she struggled to get free from her brother’s grip, “I have to capture that human.”
“Not with that injury to your head, you aren’t” Faribin said in his brotherly tone.
“Put me down, now.”
“Very well dear sister,” Faribin said as he placed her upon her feet. No sooner then he let go, the rest of the Banshees came into the clearing.
“Sister Glyana, what happened?” asked the Banshee Exarch, “Where is the human?” (Exarchs are warriors who have become masters of their aspect shrine and can’t leave it to follow another path, as all Eldar try to live their lives mastering one skill then going on to master another.)
“He probably escaped after she rendered herself unconscious from tripping again” the Banshee standing beside the Exarch snickered.
“That is enough of that Sister T’dila” the Banshee Exarch yelled.
“Actually, the Scout did it after attacking her in such a manner that I doubt you could have stopped” Faribin said coarsely to T’dila. “My men are chasing the scout right now, you should follow them,” Faribin said to the Exarch, “I will take Glyana back to camp.”
“Very well then Ranger. Come sisters” screeched the Exarch as she lead her squad into the jungle.
“You did not have to do that Brother” Glyana said as she picked up her helmet.
“Of course I did,” Faribin replied as he removed his own helmet, revealing a handsome feminine face with short black hair. “Older brothers always take care of their younger siblings.”

♦♦♦

A few days passed. Faribin stayed beside his sister as she recovered catching up with her since his self imposed exile.
“Why did you leave brother? You never gave our family a reason.”
“I didn’t agree with the fact that they still want us to go to war, instead of repopulating the Craftworld. We have plenty of Wraith Lords and Wraithguards to defend us. It just seems foolish to keep sending young Eldar to their deaths. Speaking of such haven’t you found a companion yet?”
“No, I want to wait until I have become a master in at least one of the warrior aspects before finding a partner.”
“As long as you have a plan dear sister.”
“Thanks.”
Slowly the door to the camp’s medical center opened, standing there was Spiritseer Thylnn. Her gold armor and robe was trimmed with midnight blue runes. The red soul stones on her armor and fore head sparkled in the light. (Soul stones are what Eldar Souls can be trapped in so that their psychic entity is not devoured by the great enemy, Slaanesh, a demon from the warp created by the Eldar’s foolishness in their ill fated past. A soul stone can help a Seer augment their powers, and better foretell the future. They can also be placed in side a Wraith construct to give the soul within the stone a second chance to fight for their people.)
“Good day to you Spiritseer” Faribin said as he admired her soft face and fiery hair. Thylnn smiled as she strode elegantly towards the human. “Pleas Faribin Call me by my name” she said placing her hand on the Scouts head. Almost instantly she withdrew her hand from the Scouts bandaged fore head, her face white with fear.
“What did you see Spiritseer?” Faribin asked with great concern.
“Nothing,” she replied shakily, “I saw nothing. I could not even hear the soul stones when I touched him.”
“What do you mean?” Glyana interjected.
“I mean he is not connected to the warp. He is completely blocked from it.”
“How can that be Thylnn,” said Faribin, “all barriers blocking the warp were made by it. You should be able to find a crack or weakness in such defenses.”
“I should Faribin, but this was something else. There weren’t any signs of a barrier. It is as if something out side the warp is blocking it from him.”
“So we can safely assume that growth on his arm is not connected to the warp,’ Glyana suggested as she got up from her bed and strode over to stand on the right side of Rayler. Stroking the black carapace on his arm she added “It’s a new form of mutation from the Black Dragon’s gene-seed.”
Rayler opened his eyes and shot up right. “Where am…?” was all he was able to say before a Banshee’s fist hit him in the face. “F:Hear lies Censor 8:, what was that for you damned Eldar?”
“Sorry,” Glyana apologized, “reflexes.”
Rayler glanced at her sorely. “Apology accepted,” he said, “Now what do you want with me?”
“What do you mean human?” asked Thylnn.
“What other purpose would you Spiritseer, have sent a squad of Banshees after a single scout, and not kill him.”
“I told you he was different,” Faribin said from the other side of the room. “What human would show respect to us? He even deduced what the two of you are.”
“Actually I remember the voice of this Banshee before I knocked her unconscious. Also it was a lucky guess for the Spiritseer, because you are all from the Iyanden Craftworld, which has a high majority for Spiritseers because of your ill fated battle with the Tyranids.”
“Modest and well educated,” Glyana chuckled, “You are a strange one.”
“Enough of the light humor,” Thylnn said looking at the scout. “Now allow me to introduce myself, I am Spiritseer Thylnn, this is Glyana,” pointing to the Banshee, “and that is Faribin over their.”
“Hello,” said Faribin as he waved.
“They will be your escorts during your stay here.”
“You mean I am not to be incarcerated or interrogated?”
“Not in the least,” Thylnn Replied, “we just wish to know what you were doing on this Exodite world.”
“Exodite world,” Rayler said in disbelief as he leaned back against the wall, “well that sucks. And I thought I had named a planet after my mother,” putting his hands behind his head he gave a long sigh. “To answer your question, my chapter has been sent hear to explore this system for future colonization. Me and my squad where on our last mission as scouts on this planet, we where going to be initiated together. But fate apparently decided otherwise.”
“How unfortunate,” Glyana said as she took a seat beside him.
“Oh how rude of me,” Rayler said as he laid his hands upon his lap, “Hear I am answering your questions and not introducing myself. I am Rayler Tall, scout of the Black Dragons.”
Faribin walked over to the end of Rayler’s. Grabbing a chair he sat down and began to speak. “I would like to get to know you better Rayler, you seem like an intriguing human and must have an even more interesting past.”
“I would like to know as well,” Glyana said smiling very kindly toward Rayler.
Rayler sat confused out of his mind. Eldar are more secretive and cold towards other species, and yet they were treating him like an old friend. Giving both the Eldar awkward glance he stated “I would have expected the Spiritseer to take interest in my past, but not two aspect warriors. This is a very confusing position you have placed me in. Why would you like to know?”
“I would like to know where you learned to fight like you did at your camp,” replied Faribin, “I have never seen a Marine fight in such a unique hand to hand combat style.”
“I would like to know about you in general,” said Glyana supporting her head upon her hands.
Rayler gave the Eldar woman a sideways glance, looking to the Ranger in front of him he asked, “Is she always like that?”
Faribin chuckled, “As long as I have known her, my sister always losses her common sense when she meets a handsome young warrior. But you are the first human she has done this too.”
“I guess I should feel honored,” Rayler said sarcastically. “To start I taught myself how to fight like that by studying the techniques of other species. I combined what I saw as exceptionally good maneuvers, and made up a few of my own. You saw one of my inventions when I fought the Ork Nob. I took all of this and made my own fighting style, which has kept me alive many times.”
“Do you think I could learn that technique you employed on the Ork?” Faribin asked earnestly.
“I don’t see why not, but you will need two blades,” Rayler replied. “As for my past, well, that’s something I would like to keep to myself.”
“Very well then, have it your way. But I will get it out of you eventually,” Glyana said as she stood up.
“Spiritseer could I talk with you in private,” Rayler asked as Glyana walked behind her brother.
“Very well,” Thylnn said as she took a seat beside Rayler, “could the two of you please stand out side and wait.”
“Very well Thylnn,” replied Faribin, “come Glyana lets go” taking his sister by the wrist and leading her out side.
“How long do you think it will take my chapter to come and retrieve me?” Rayler asked Thylnn.
“A few days I believe. Why?”
“Because, I would like to have time to forge an alliance with you and your people. If you will allow me to”
“What do you mean; an alliance between your chapter and Iyanden?”
“No just me, not the Black Dragons.”
“Pardon?”
“I wish to have allies with a better understanding of how the universe works.”
“A bold statement, from a devote Space Marine.”
“Who said I was devoted.”
“What?”
“I have my reasons for not believing in the self proclaimed God Emperor.”
“And what would your comrades think if I told them this information.”
“They would believe you to be acting like an Eldar, trying to sow distrust amongst the ranks in order to further your own secret agenda.”
“You are a strange one. I will think about your offer Rayler,” said Thylnn as she stood up, “but until the time you acquire a chapter of your own, let us stay acquaintances.”
As she walked to the door, Rayler thought about what he said and wondered if he could trust her enough in the fate of their two races.
Lying back down, he closed his eyes and faded into sleep.

♦♦♦

The winters on Colcha are harsh. Rotating aimlessly around its sun, on the edge of the Segmentum Pacificus, the agricultural world Colcha awakened from its winter slumber. The ice covering most of the planet’s water sources begin to crack and thaw, as grass forced its way up through the snow. The imperial city of Ragnvald sat at the foot of a great mountain. Skjolddis, protected the city from the harsh winter winds of Colcha. On the edge of the eastern living district sat a quaint little dwelling. Within its grey concrete walls, lived the family of First Sergeant Aren Tall of the Colcha Imperial Guard Planetary Defense (Big title for a simple soldier, isn’t it). Aren sat at the dinner table cleaning his Lasgun, his short red hair glowed in the florescent lights. His sixteen year old daughter, Ellisif, lay sideways on her bed. Long brunet hair flopped on her pillow as she did her homework. Her little brother played with his toy Leman Russ battle tank, his father gave him earlier that day, at the side of her bed making engine sounds as he went.
“Rayler can you please go play somewhere else for awhile.” Ellisif said, “I am trying to finish this report, and your playing is distracting me.”
“Sorry sis” the six year old boy said as he picked up his toy tank and went towards the door sulking.
“Thanks, I’ll play with you after I am finished, Ok,” she said with a loving grin.
“Ok” Rayler replied with a smile as he left the room and walked towards the kitchen.
Standing in front of the sink was a beautiful young woman with long raven hair. She hummed her favorite tune as she washed the dishes and looked out the window at the spring sunshine.
“Watch you up to mommy?” came a little voice beside her.
Beaming with motherly bliss she replied, “I am thinking about how fun this summer will be.”
“Hmm, what do you mean?”
“I mean that you and I,” she said as she lifted the little boy up, “are going to have loads of fun running around in the fields this year.”
“Why?”
“Because, I feel like this will be a great time in our lives. The spring has come early this year and your father is going to get a promotion. That means he can spend more time with us and less time at work. Won’t that be great?”
“Yah,” Rayler said with a big grin, his green eyes sparkling with joy.
As she placed the boy back on his feet she said, “Now why don’t you go out side and play for a bit, ok.”
“Ok.”
As Rayler ran to the door she called out, “I will be there in a minute to help you get ready.”
As he ran past the dinner table his father spoke up in his gentle voice, “Where are you going in such a hurry, soldier?”
Stopping in his tracks, Rayler turned around and marched to stand at attention in front of his father. “I am going outside to play, sir,” he said in his soldier voice.
“Then you had better leave that tank here. It is quit slippery outside still, and you don’t want to fall and break it now would you?”
“No sir,” Rayler said as he placed his new toy on the table.
“Now that’s a good boy. Go and get ready, your mother is waiting at the door for you,” Aren said smiling
“Sir, yes sir” his son replied as he saluted smiling. Turning on the spot he ran out of the room towards the front door.
“You all ready to go?” his mother asked as he came running to the door.
“Yep,” Rayler replied as he zipped up his spring jacket.

Had to cut it becouse of length

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Last edited by Rayler Tall; 03-15-08 at 12:05 AM.
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Default Chapter 1 Part Two

“Good,” she said patting his head, “you seem to have everything ready for a day of adventure. Now go have fun.”
Rayler burst from the door, the cool wind glided softly against his face as he ran. Through the hills he ran until he reached his favorite spot at the base of the mountain. The land was always green hear year round, no snow ever fell upon it, and the dirt never froze. If you put your ear to the rocks you could hear the land rumble, as if a great creature were sleeping under the ground. The geologists say it was a geo-thermal anomaly and nothing more. Rayler however imagined it was a great daemon that he trapped within the earth and played many games based around it. From his favorite position upon a rock formation, in the shape of a lizard’s head jutting out of the ground (Rayler called it lizard rock because of it), you could see the entire city and open plains for kilometers.
As Rayler stood there taking in his favorite view, an armored hand clasped around his shoulder.
“Beautiful view child isn’t it?” said a sad, dark voice over an electronic speaker.
As Rayler turned to look up at his new companion’s face, he saw a horned helmet of a Chaos Space Marine Sorcerer. His face turned quickly to horror as the Marine’s violet eye lenses met his gaze. The sorcerer’s black power armor, trimmed from head to toe with gold arrows and spikes, was etched with faces in painful screams.
“What do you want with me?” Rayler said shakily, quivering in the sorcerer’s grasp.
“Hmm?” tilting his head at the boy, the sorcerer remarked, “I am here to show you what your future will be. If you make the wrong choices you will end up like me.” As the sorcerer finished his sentence he pointed at the city.
Rayler looked towards the city as dozens of Drop Pods shot into the buildings and streets. Chaos Space Marines poured out of the capsules and began to open fire into the city’s populace, laughing insanely as they ripped human flesh apart with their chain-swords and axes. Rayler could only stare as the city was engulfed in violet flames of chaos.
As he watched, the sorcerer grabbed Rayler’s right wrist and began to etch upon it a rune, a rune not of the warp gods, but a more ancient power. The rune resembled two Xs crossing over each other making a diamond in the center sitting upon a line. Rayler was too numb from shock to feel the sorcerer’s clawed gauntlet cut him. Standing there panicking, he thought of his family and what must be happening to them. As the sorcerer finished the mark, Rayler’s panic slowly turned to rage, rage directed towards the Imperium of men for not being there to stop this massacre, the Emperor for not protecting his devoted servants with his “divine” powers, and the forces of chaos for causing such carnage and bloodshed for their own amusement. His eyes began to glow faintly as their colour shifted from bright green to blood red.
“Child, use the gift I have given you and bring back the true gods of man” the sorcerer said as he grabbed Rayler’s shoulders and turned him to look in his face.
“The true gods?” Rayler said with a glance at the burning city.
“Yes. The Emperor could not have created man, for he is one.”
“I understand.” Rayler replied coldly
“Also do not stray from the path that will be laid out for you child. I did, now I must pay the price.” With that said, the sorcerer threw Rayler away.
Landing several meters away, Rayler sat up as the sorcerer shouted “This is the fate of those of us who stray from their paths” taking a Melta-bomb out from under his robes, the sorcerer activated it. Dropping the canister at his feet the sorcerer waved farewell to Rayler, a moment later, the bomb detonated engulfing the sorcerer in a thermal explosion, melting him and his armor instantly. The ground gave a great shudder, as though a volcano had suddenly awakened from its millennia long slumber. Rayler looked around quickly to see if any smoke was billowing from the surrounding mountains, only to have his eyes rest upon lizard rock.
The rock was charred and broken from the explosion. At the base there appeared a crack that spewed blue smoke. Where Rayler pretended the shut eyes of the demon laid, were now replaced with slit orbs of glowing crimson. To his amazement, lizard rock began to move. The ground began to crack as it arose, the broken shell covering it fell away revealing gleaming pearl scales. As the creature gained height it unfurled its crest and raised blade-like spikes from the tip of its nose, down its long muscular neck, between its three sets of wings, to the tip of its tail.
“Chaos” the great shimmering dragon growled. Rising up onto its hind legs, and extending its wings, the dragon gave a deafening roar.
All screams and movement stopped within the city, as the warped minds of the heretical Space Marines stared in wonder at the glimmering creature standing at the foot of the mountain.
“It must be a new god of the warp come to take part in the attack” one of them suggested.
“We should pay homage to it then, in order for us to hopefully be granted great power” another said as he began to open fire at the Imperial Guards emplacement.
As the battle began to ensue once more the dragon pushed off from the ground and flew towards the city bellowing at the top of its lungs “Pok douta lowd sva huena whedab iri!” Landing upright behind the forces of Chaos, the dragon stood there glaring at them.
The Guardsmen watched the creature, terrified of what their fate might be. One brave soul among them began to open fire once more at the Chaos Space Marines yelling “If I’m going to die today, I’m taking as many of them as I can with me.”
Bolstered by his shout of courage, and blatantly stating the obvious, the Imperial Guardsmen began to open fire once more.
“For Chaos!” the Traitors of man shouted as they charged forward only to have a great spiked tail fall in front of them.
“Wux nishka pay ihk falling de douta donoap, Warriors di Chaos” Growled the great lizard. Taking in a deep breath and opening its mouth, the dragon shot out blue flames of plasma, liquefying the warped Space Marines within their armor instantly. Leaving their still steaming shells behind the great being walked through out the city engulfing the Forces of Chaos in plasma. When it was sure all servants of the dark gods where exterminated it looked upwards to space. Spotting the heretic’s battle ship, the creature began to flap its six mighty wings once more and took to the skies. Higher and higher it flew until it broke the atmosphere, speeding towards the ship. Spotting the creature, and seeing what transpired on Fenris’ surface, the ship began to open fire.
Gliding between each shell and beam of energy, the white dragon drew ever closer to its prey. Landing on the outer hull, it began to tear at the armored plates with wrist talons as long as its arm. As it made its way through the ship, it ignited every thing within its sight in blue flames. Finally burrowing through to the other side, the dragon burst from the ship’s hull and glided to safety as internal explosions began to erupt.
With a final massive detonation of violet warp energy the ship was gone. On the surface Rayler saw the explosion as a bright violet nova blast, engraving the image in his memories permanently. As he walked towards the city he saw what remained of his home. The roof had been blown apart and the left and front walls had collapsed completely. As he walked through the door he saw to his left the corpse of his father, a knife sticking out from his back. Walking further amongst the ruins he saw his mother lying under the table. Rayler lifted the table up to see if she was alive. There she was, holding her favorite white dress stained with blood, in her cold dead hands.
Rayler frowned, “What’s the point of crying now. There is no one left to cry with, there is nothing left” he thought as he pried the dress from her hands. Looking around for his sister, he entered what was left of her room, blown apart by an explosive. Searching around Rayler found her black gem necklace under some papers, inside the gem was a silver sculpture of a wolf surrounded by flames. As he made his way back to his father, Rayler stepped on something made of glass. Looking down he saw the recent family photo, slightly charred from the fires and explosions, scooping it up Rayler continued towards his father. As he approached, Rayler never once shed a tear but kept on frowning in disappointment.
Standing over his father Rayler bent down and removed the fallen Guardsmen’s helmet and one incendiary grenade. As Rayler left the house, head bowed in shame and regret, the city’s disaster relief force came in search of other survivors.
“Here’s another one!” one of the men shouted.
As they came running towards him, Rayler lifted his head and gazed at them with glowing red eyes of depression. Stopping in their tracks as they saw the un-natural glow, one of them raised their gun, preparing to fire.
“Do not even bother with that,” Rayler said in a distant voice, “the Imperium will purge this city for having being tainted by chaos.” As he said this Rayler unpinned the grenade and tossed it into his home. Exploding, the grenade encased the ruins of the house in flames, destroying everything of his past and giving him time to run from the Imperial Guards.
Fleeing the city, Rayler made his way to the space transit center, over thirty kilometers away in the next city, to leave his home world behind and to join a chapter of the Space Marines.

♦♦♦

“Rayler, wake up Rayler,” Faribin’s voice said as it broke through the shadows of Rayler’s memories, “it’s time for midday meal.”
It has been two days since Rayler had awoken in the Eldar camp’s infirmary. He spent most of his days sitting at the edge of the lagoon in front of the camp, staring at the waterfall and mulling over his past. Rayler only strayed from this routine for meals, to train with Faribin, and have walks with Thylnn and converse about each others goals, past, and culture.
“So, what have you been pondering about today friend?” Faribin asked as they walked to the mess hall.
“Just about when my life began to get f:Hear lies Censor 9:ed up royally” he replied.
“Ah, yes. Thylnn spoke about such events, if it was alright for her to do so.”
“Yes it is. I never asked her to hold her tongue about such information. When I said it to her, it became as much her knowledge as mine, which she may do with as she pleases.”
“Interesting philosophy. Any others that you might have in that vast bank of knowledge you contain within your skull?”
“Yes I do have one more.”
“And that is.”
“S:Hear lies Censor 10: happens. When something bad happens, this describes that it was inevitable and could not be altered. Therefore you should not be concerned about it, and should go on about your life.”
“That’s a cold outlook on life. Are you sure you should live like that?”
“I have no choice in the matter. I am a Space Marine, and exposed to death left and right. I have to be this way in order to survive. Even if it was my closest friend or family member, I have to brush it off and keep going,” Rayler said distantly before changing his tone to a more sarcastic one as they entered the building, “or else I might become a mass of gibbering post traumatic stress.”
“As usual you are always able to make light of such a mood” said Faribin chuckling.
With that Rayler did something almost never seen by anyone, he gave Faribin a fanged smirk and began to laugh as the two of them sat down together and ate their meals. After the two of them finished their meals, they left the dining hall, and continued training. A couple of hours later, Thylnn interrupted their exercises.
“Rayler, could you and Faribin come with me. You have some visitors.”
Both of them knew what she meant and stopped immediately. Following her they walked to an embankment at the edge of the camp, the same embankment where Rayler first spotted Thylnn. Standing at the base of said embankment was Lord Commander Kailem and Commander Fraya with a retinue of ten Space Marines from the Chapter’s elite First Company. Commander Kailem’s face was giving of a gentle and understanding glow as he saw the wounded Scout walk towards him, while Fraya’s was twisted and enraged at the fact he was still alive while the others were not.
“Lord Commander Kailem,” Thylnn said as she stopped in front of the squad of Space Marines, “Here is your surviving scout, safe and sound as we stated earlier.”
“My lord” Rayler said as he knelt before Kailem.
“Arise Tall” Kailem said in a kind but rough tone. “We hope you understand our reservations about your statement Eldar witch, for we have lost many of our men to your species.”
“Apology accepted human” She replied sternly. “Now if you will excuse me I have to inform the Seer Council about Rayler’s departure. Faribin if you will please join me.”
“Yes Spiritseer” Faribin replied. “Thank you Rayler for showing me your techniques on how to dispatch Ork Nobs.”
“Do not mention it,” he replied with a smirk, “and good luck on wooing Thylnn.”
Thylnn stopped dead in her tracks, and then continued forward. The tips of her pointed ears a bright red.
“I wish you didn’t say that” Faribin said looking over his shoulder.
“Someone had to or else you would never have spoken to her.”
“You’re right Rayler, and for that I thank you again.” Faribin quickly turned and ran after the Spiritseer.
“He seems to talk to you like a close friend scout,” hissed Fraya, “how long have you known him?”
“Only as long as I have been here Commander.” replied Rayler, “One must befriend his captures in order to escape them more easily.”
“True enough,” said Kailem, “now let us return to the ship for the burial, and induction of the names of your fellow squads-men into the chapter’s Hall of Fallen.”
“Yes my Lord” Rayler replied.
“And Fraya,” Kailem said harshly, “Rayler tall is a Brother Space Marine of the Black Dragons Second Company. So take good care of him for he is under your command, and if I hear one complaint from your men about sending them on suicide missions. I will have your head.”
“Yes…my lord” replied Fraya.
The squad of Marines left the jungle planet behind in a Thunder Hawk Troop Transport and returned to the Delsayoth. Here the names of Karas and his scouts were engraved upon the Hall of Fallen’s walls. During the ceremony Rayler was awarded his Power armour and Assault Jump pack as well as a chain sword. He prepared himself for the years to come, beginning with an instant distrust of his new commander, Fraya, and two new pieces to add to his personal shrine: a broken combat knife given to him by his mentor and a sniper rifle engraved with the names of his closest battle brothers Joshuwa Staingerd, Kiel Seran, and Larem Kaien.

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post #3 of 5 (permalink) Old 03-15-08, 12:10 AM Thread Starter
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Default Chapter 2 so far

Chapter 2
Dragon’s Challenge

The icy winds of winter swept across Rayler’s unprotected face as he crossed the open plains of Kes, stumbling along the un-cultivated ground for weeks, his treasures in tow, finally coming to a stop on top of a great hill. Below him sat the city of St.Chirosius, named after the Confessor who freed the people from the enslavement of Cardinal Bucharis. St.Chirosius was a hub for interplanetary travel due to Colcha being an agricultural planet; excess produce was always being sent off of to feed the trillions of mouths of the Imperium.
Rayler turned to look at the little blob on the horizon that was once his home. The burning city appeared like a dark stain on the planet’s frozen surface. As he stared a beam of light shot down from the sky, landing in the center of the flames, followed by consecutive beams. As each one landed an explosion of great magnitude erupted from the ground devastating everything in its path. “I warned them.” He said coldly as he watched the Inquisitions Grey Knights Space Marines descend from the skies in their Thunderhawk Gunships. Turning his back towards the ruined city (mostly a crater now), knowing full well what was to befall the survivors of the bombardment, Rayler walked down the hill towards St.Chirosius.

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I would appreciate any feed back on my work or suggestions that you might have.

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post #5 of 5 (permalink) Old 03-24-08, 08:46 PM
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Very well done! I'm only about a third of the way through what you've written thus far, so take what I say with a grain or two of salt, lol.

Howling Banshee power weapons are triggered to the genetic touch of the Eldar for whom it was made. A human would not be able to work such a weapon, as the weapon would discharge, killing anyone but that specific Eldar.

The Inquisition would not allow anyone with such a powerful presence, psychically, to live for longer than it took to successfully diagnose those powers. If the powers could not be determined to be beneficial when fully trained, the Inquisition would kill said individual before releasing them from custody of the Black Ships or the Inquisitor performing the investigation. Anyone with a null void, or an unknown power would be killed immediately if they could not be controlled by the Inquisition.

If an Ork Nob challenged a Warboss for leadership, the Nob would not be allowed to live. The group would not be cast out of the village, but rather their remains would be.

As for your writing style, It's great! I've really enjoyed what I've read thus far.
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