Introduction: I've looked through the stories posted and noticed a lack of Dark Eldar stories. Since this is my first time trying to write a story, I figured I'd give it a try. Anyway, hope you enjoy. Any creative feedback would be much appreciated
THE BLACKEST NIGHT
Dero VI. A gentle agri-world supplying the entire Dero system. Without the food supplied by the farmers, the Hive Worlds of Dero IV and V would starve. For generations the simple and rural civilians worked the fertile land. Except for the occasional drunken brawl, the closest thing the Dero PDF had to trouble was facilitating the planet's tithe to the Hive worlds.
Sgt. Makon waited at the checkpoint with his squad as another hauler truck drove passed. The pungent smell of grox meat wafted up his nose from the vehicle, almost causing him to gag. Even though he was born and raised on Dero VI, Makon had always found the stench of Grox meat to be appalling.
Night was approaching fast and the last trucks were pulling into the spaceport. It had been a long day and Makon was looking forward to the prospect of retiring to a nice glass of amasec before falling asleep. Having served with the PDF for over a decade now, Makon was accustomed to the bustling time of year when Dero VI paid its food tithes to the other planets in the system.
“Sir, we just received a report that the convoy that arrived in the Holmstead hamlet hasn’t reported in over 5 hours. Command has ordered us to head over and see what the problem is.” Private Haron said after getting off the squad’s only vox.
“Of course they have.” Sgt. Makon sighed. “Alright then Haron, get the squad together and lets see what those grox-heads have gotten themselves into.”
By the time the cargo-hauler the PDF squad had commandeered from the depot pulled into the hamlet, the twin moons of Dero were already shining bright in the night sky. Cursing his luck, Sgt. Makon leapt off the truck as he men jumped out the back. Only the headlights from the hauler provided any illumination to the small village. Turning on his flashlight, Sgt. Makon lead his squad through the dirt roads up to the village center. A creeping sense of unease passed up Makon’s spine. The town was quiet. Deathly quiet.
“Hello? Anybody here?” Makon said raising his voice. After a several moments of waiting, Makon repeated himself again. Still, nobody answered. Arriving in the center of the hamlet, Makon spotted the five vehicle convoy that was assigned to take the foodstuffs from the village to the capital. Examining the haulers, Makon noticed that the cargo-haulers were loaded and ready to depart. Something wasn’t right here, Sgt. Makon told himself. It looked like the entire town had just disappeared. Nothing except the chilly wind made a sound. Sgt. Makon felt that tingling sense of unease deepen as he moved past the trucks to a simple house across from the haulers. The lights were off and the door was shut, but as Makon swept his flashlight over it he could have sworn to the God-Emperor that he saw something move. Drawing his standard issued las-gun given to every PDF trooper, Sgt. Makon nervously approached the hovel. Makon prided himself on his physical appearance; a lifetime spent as a farmer and now the PDF had earned Sgt. Makon a reputation as a tough and burly man who didn’t tolerate weakness. However, as he placed his hand on the wooden door, Sgt. Makon felt the all too human sense of fear creep through him.
“SIR!” A voice resounded behind him
Whipping around, Sgt. Makon gave an unsteady sigh of relief. Trooper Jummon had been a hair’s breadth from being shot by Makon. “What is it trooper?” Sgt. Makon said, straining to keep his voice neutral and level. Breathing heavily, Trooper Jummon shakily approached the Sergeant. “Sir, me and the boys have found some of the villagers. You need to see this.” Jummon said, the terror in his voice evident.
Following the trooper past the cargo-haulers, the darkness seemed all encompassing as the clouds smothered the twilight shine of the moons. With his flashlight and Trooper Jummon guiding the way, Sgt. Makon made his way toward the town hall, a small chapel looking building that the hamlet had used as a meeting place to discuss crop issues. Approaching the old, decaying building, Sgt. Makon saw Troopers Nern and Fraum outside; Trooper Nern was shaking visibly and trying to smoke a lho-stick while Trooper Fraum was retching on the ground. So lost were they in their own thoughts and nightmares that they failed to even notice Sgt. Makon pass by them. Ignoring the insubordination from the troopers, Makon pressed onwards into the building. Like the rest of the hamlet, no lights were on except the weak lights from the trooper’s flashlights. The darkness inside seemed even more heavy than outside; as if it was swallowing the light. The rest of the squad waited outside a set of doors leading into the main hall of the building. Shining his light on them, Makon noticed the pale and ghoulish looks on each of their faces; Beron, Duko, Zaver, Kron and Tek all looked like they were trapped in their own personal nightmares.
“What’s going on here” Sgt. Makon’s gruff voice cut through the silence.
“S-s-s-Sir, they’re in here.” Trooper Beron said trembling.
“The villagers?” Sgt Makon asked
“Some of them, as far as we can tell” Beron said, closing his eyes as if to try and get the image out of his head
Moving up to the doors, Sgt. Makon noticed how the troopers immediately backed away. Taking a deep breath, Makon pushed the doors open and shined his light into the room.
What he saw next was sure to haunt his dreams for the rest of his life. Hung upon the walls were the dismembered and mutilated bodies of the innocent villagers of the Holmstead hamlet. Some of them had been flayed, others had their bones and limbs twisted into angles a human body was not meant to be, while others appeared to have been carved up like animals. Each one of them shared one common bond: their faces were left alone and that was what filled the brave sergeant with the most terror. For their faces were locked in grimaces of sheer, absolute, agony. Each one of the corpses seemed to be staring at Makon, pleading eyes begging him for release.
Dropping to his knees, Sgt. Makon emptied his stomach of its contents. As he spit on the ground, Sgt. Makon noticed something different with the floor and turned his flashlight downwards. Blood. The entire floor was covered in deep crimson blood.
“By the Golden Throne of Terra..” Sgt. Makon whispered to himself. Slowly backing out of the room, Sgt. Makon quickly slammed the doors shut behind him and breathed heavily for several long moments
“What kind of monsters would do such a thing.” Trooper Beron muttered over and over
“Sir, what should be do?” Private Haron asked
“I…I don’t know” was the only response Sgt. Makon could come up with.
Before he could think any further on what he could do, a high pitched scream came from the outside, followed by another scream cut abruptly short. Flicking the safety off his las-gun, Sgt. Makon raced outside with his squad quickly in tow.
As he ran outside, his lasgun up and ready, Sgt. Makon looked around for Nern and Fraum. They were gone. There wasn’t even any sign of them being there at all, except for a small smoking butt of a lho-stick resting on the dirt ground. “NERN! FRAUM! Where are you?” Sgt. Makon yelled. His nerves were fraying and he could feel every fiber of his body screaming for him to flee this hamlet. He had to get his men the hell out of here and radio for support.
“Pvt. Haron, radio in to command for back….” was all that Sgt. Elim Makon could say before a long serrated blade pierced his back and exited through his abdomen. With a look of agony and confusion, Sgt. Makon fell to the ground, his last sound on this plane of existence a wet gurgle. Dropping the dead body, a bald tall figure stepped in front of the squad. Pitch black oval eyes, and long serrated teeth smiled at the humans. His very skin seemed to fade in and out of existence. Still smiling, the figure seemed to simply phase out of existence before their very eyes.
Trooper Beron dropped his weapon and fled back inside the town hall as the remainder of the squad raised their guns and fired on the vanishing warrior. Before even half their power packs were empty, the shadows exploded before them. Slithering from the shadows as if they had been there the whole time, a handful of the warriors that resembled the same one that executed Sgt. Makon attacked them. Trooper Tek turned just in time to see one of the terror-inspiring nightmares slice his head off. Trooper Zaver had most of his face torn off by one of the monsters talons before he could even scream. Trooper Kron charged at the monsters, bayonet fixed. Before he had even taken five steps, another one of the attackers appeared behind him and punched his sword through the trooper’s neck. Trooper Jumming fired his las gun point blank into the back of one of the killers. Just when it seemed the monster was about to be hit by the las-round, he simply phased out of existence and reappeared behind Jumming, severing his legs and mounting him. His screams echoed long throughout the area as the monster tore him apart. Trooper Duko threw his las-gun to the ground and fell to his knees, pleading with the mysterious killers to spare him. Harsh, barking laughter filled the night as the monster who had eviscerated trooper Zaver ran and pounced on Duko, vanishing into whatever hellish realm it had come from with him.
As his world fell apart around him, Private Haron dropped to the ground and curled up into a ball, his mind broken by the insanity of what had happened. Wishing the daemons away, Pvt. Haron’s mind overloaded and simply shut down, sending the young man into unconsciousness.
Pain. Agonizing pain. Haron awoke to the sight of the monstrous creatures that had destroyed his squad standing around him, toying with him. He wasn’t alone either. A frantic, mad trooper Beron gibbered and squirmed under the grasp of the monsters, begging for release. With laughter that made his skin crawl, Haron saw that the monsters were not alone either. Sleek, lithe creatures were moving through the village now. Half naked women cavorted around together and armored warriors moved gracefully throughout the hamlet. The missing villagers were there too. Although they looked like they would rather have been dead.
The worst of all though was the armored figure walking towards him with two of what must be his bodyguards behind him. Across his helmet was the skin from a human’s face twisted into an agonizing scream. As the leader of the monsters approached, even the bald pale creatures bowed before him. In a musical, melodious voice, the aliens conversed until finally the warlord turned his gaze on Haron and spoke in broken Gothic.
“Do with these pathetic creatures what you will.” The leader said walking off laughing.
The last thing Pvt Haron felt was the terror as he looked into the joy filled eyes of the Mandrakes and the painful touch of their blades as they began mutilating Haron and Beron.
The Dark Eldar had come to the Dero system and a fate far worse than death awaited the mon-keigh.