Heresy Online Expeditious Stories 3: Betrayal
Here's how it works:
Each month, there will be a thread posted in the Original Works forum for that month's HOES competition. For those of you interested in entering, read the entry requirements, write a story that fits the chosen theme and post it as a reply to the competition thread by the deadline given.
Once the deadline has passed, a separate voting thread will be posted, where the readers and writers can post their votes for the top three stories. Points will be awarded (3 points for 1st, 2 for 2nd, and 1 for 3rd) for each vote cast, totaled at the closure of the voting window, and a winner will be announced. The winner will have his/her story added to the Winning HOES thread that will be posted with the completion of the first month's competition and, hopefully, stickied by the moderators
The idea with the theme is that it should serve as the inspiration for your stories rather than a constraint. While creative thinking is most certainly encouraged, the theme should still be relevant to your finished story. The chosen theme can be applied within the WH40K, WHF, HH, and even your own completely original works (though keep in mind, this IS a Warhammer forum) but there will be no bias as to which setting is used for your story.
As far as the theme goes, please feel free with future competitions to contact me with your ideas/proposals, especially given that my creative juices may flow a bit differently than yours. All I ask is that you PM me your ideas rather than posting them into the official competition entry/voting threads to keep posts there relevant to the current competition.
The official word count for each competition will be 1,000 words. There will be a 10% allowance in this limit, essentially giving you a 900-1,100 word range with which to tell your tale. This is non-negotiable. This is an Expeditious Story competition, not an Epic Story nor an Infinitesimal Story competition. If you are going to go over or under the 900-1,100 word limit, you need to rework your story. It is not fair to the other entrants if one does not abide by the rules. If you cannot, feel free to PM me with what you have and I'll give suggestions or ideas as to how to broaden or shorten your story.
Each entry must have a word count posted with it. Expect a reasonably cordial PM from me (and likely some responses in the competition thread) if you either fail to adhere to this rule. The word count can be annotated either at the beginning or ending of your story, and does not need to include your title.
Without further ado...
The theme for this month's competition is:
Entries should be posted in this thread, along with any comments that the readers may want to give (and comments on stories are certainly encouraged in both the competition and voting threads!) 40K, 30K, WHF, and original universes are all permitted (please note, this excludes topics such as Halo, Star Wars, Forgotten Realms, or any other non-original and non-Warhammer settings).
The deadline for entries is Midnight US Eastern Standard Time (-5.00 hours for you UK folks)Sunday, 27 March 2011. Voting will be held from 28 March - 3 April.
If you have any questions, feel free to either PM me or ask in this thread.
Without further nonsense from me, let the writing begin!
Table of Contents
Dark Angel - Betrayal
Doelago - Artefact
Stephen_Newman - The Purging of Slis'thrak
C'Tan Chimera - By the Blood of the Wronged
Gothik - Kannada
Mossy Toes - Survivor
Bane_of_Kings - The Tower
Boc - Are You Ready, Brother?
Vulkansnodosaurus - Should be Expected
Shogun Nate - Iron Within
Ckcrawford - Put to Rest
No rest for the weary, huh?
I can't jump right into this given as I got plenty else on high priority, but expect something from me in the future :ok:
Now THIS is a theme to which I can write!
And good, Mossy, need to get your arse in here!
Well, I'll defiantly get around to doing this one then.
got a 13 hour shift today but will def try and get something done over the next few days.
First entry into both the competition and this months theme - This should be familiar to those of you who have read by latest fiction, and it builds up on the primary character's backstories somewhat, or moreso their actions during the Schism.
It will be confusing for some - And it jumps between time, place and characters. But please, bare with me. :)
Word Count Including Title - 1048.
‘Traitor.’ Grunted Michael, one hand placing pressure upon the ghastly wound in his side, the other clenching the bejeweled pommel of his blade.
‘True,’ Admitted Lucifer, a knife-thin smile etched upon his sullen features, despite the deep laceration along his chest. ‘Better to shatter false oaths, than live by them.’
‘You shame my honour, brother.’ The Archangel spat, emphasizing the last word. His voice trembled with scarcely controlled anger, the muscles on his jaw flickering beneath porcelain-perfect flesh.
‘Yes, again, you speak words of wisdom.’ Lucifer conceded, flickering his blade - A show of feline, undaunted dexterity.
Around them, the Golden Citadel groaned in protest. Tapestries withered and marble blackened in the uncontrolled flames, and ashen rain fell around the pair. Distant, eddying sounds of battle rang out.
‘Yours, Michael, not mine.’ Interrupted Lucifer, lips peeling back into a horrible, mischievous grin.
Michael did not reply. He merely stepped closer, teeth gritted in pain. His blade swung. Once.
The rebellion had been birthed from jealousy and neglect. Lucifer and a considerable amount of his followers, known as the Grigori, had tired of the Almighty’s newest creations - Humanity.
They had tired of their new roles as guardians and guides, and soon the Grigori’s numbers had swollen with such intensity that traditional housing methods were abandoned in favour for expansion.
In total, a third of Heaven’s Host, an huge percentage, had dedicated their arms to the cankerous cause.
And thus the Great War had ignited.
A great, ululating scream pierced the tranquility. Upon the seaside boulevard, where lovers and artists flocked, Raphael turned his head towards the source of the cry.
Along the marble roadway, a figure lay sprawled on the floor, blood leaking profusely from his form. Above, sword-in-hand, was another of the Angelic Host.
Behind the swordsman, dozens of black-robed figures followed. They held a collection of weapons and torches in hand, faces shadowed beneath the folds of their robes.
As they encroached on the downed Angel, a series of blows rained down upon him; and limbs fell away wetly, sinuous strands bridging between the torso and the broken appendages.
Zealous cries of ‘Murder!’ arose, and an opposing crowd began to grow, wielding makeshift weapons - Tools, utensils, broken chair legs.
Raphael drew his blade with an horrified sigh, a miraculously forged thing, and advanced on the crowds.
Beelzebub led the slaughter through Heaven’s art districts, hacking and slashing, showing no skill in his actions - Merely brutality and unquenchable bloodlust.
Figures in shimmering armour opposed him, glaives and halberds held in shaking hands, shock writ upon their features.
One charges, crying out in tremendous rage. Beelzebub sidestepped the pathetic blow, twirled his blade once, and punched it into the Angel’s neck. Blood jetted and muscle squelched, gnawed at by the sword’s jagged length. The Angel fell away, eyes glazed.
Another three rushed him, and with a cold calmness, Beelzebub felled them. They were not opponents; they were distractions.
Advancing up a set of black-veined steps, Beelzebub drew himself to an halt. A curator ran to him, going down on his knees and embracing Beelzebub’s armoured legs, sobbing.
‘Please, leave the art.’ He begged, mewling louder. Black-winged Grigori began to crowd around, holding torches in hands.
‘Burn the galleries - Destroy the precious art!’ He cried, and the Grigori lifted into the air, chuckling madly. They threw torches in through windows and decapitated statues, reveling in the orgy of destruction.
As flames arose before Beelzebub, he struck his sword down into the curator’s skull, cleaving him in two.
This would be a good night.
Lucifer’s grin was torn away from his face, replaced by a pained twitch. Slowly, his vision drifted from the emotionless face of Michael and acknowledged the sword lodged firmly in his chest. The tip, and a considerable portion of the sword’s length, protruded from his back; dripping viscous blood.
‘No..’ Lucifer breathed, his breath erratic and agonizing. ‘It cannot end this way..’
‘Repent, Lucifer.’ Michael commanded, staring.
‘..I will not allow it!’
‘It is over, brother. I am sorry.’ Michael said, eyes sparkling.
‘Do not shed pity on me!’ Lucifer raged, casting his own weapon away with a clang, taking the pommel of Michael’s in a two-handed grip.
‘Lucifer, stop.’ The Archangel growled, gripping his dagger.
His brother, blinded by anger, did not comply.
Michael’s dagger came about with an hiss of metal-upon-metal.
‘I am truly sorry..’ He whispered, and plunged the dagger into Lucifer’s neck. No blood drizzled from the almost-invisible cut.
His brother’s form collapsed, and Michael sagged onto his knees, weeping as the Golden Citadel finally avalanched into the crystal ocean, taking thousands of warring Angels with it.
Glass and bone crunched beneath Beelzebub’s feet as he picked his way across the ruins of the Golden Citadel, looking for something. Broken blades, spears and arrow shafts poked from the debris, some still clenched in skeletal hands. He had crept back into God’s territories, searching for one thing which would give him absolute power in the Grigori’s new realms.
Ahead, four charred pillars still stood. In the centre lay his prize - A single, winged necklace. Once, it had belonged to Lucifer himself. But now the Arch-Traitor was dead, laid low by his brother.
Beelzebub’s pace quickened, greed overtaking the rest of his senses. He ducked beneath a spar, and reached out towards the charm.
‘Yes,’ He smiled, eyes flashing. ‘It is mine.’
His fingers slipped around the chain, the beads of which were crusted with dry blood and ash. He lifted it into the air, staring up triumphantly. His wings batted once, and twirls of ash climbed into the air around his form. His uncanny looks to Lucifer - Almost twin like in fashion, incited a new hope for the Grigori. Many believed that if the medallion could be returned to them, the war could continue into a new age of prosperity.
‘No,’ Came a sudden voice, croaky but strong. ‘It is mine.’
The red-winged form of Lucifer, blackened by soot and stained with irregular dashes of congealed blood, burst from the rubble beneath Beelzebub. Gauntleted fingers seized Beelzebub’s throat, clenching until purple bruises blossomed.
‘The Betrayal was a failure.’ Lucifer growled, his voice quivering until it was purr-like. ‘Now, we wait.’
Damn you Dark Angel, finally something I can write about, and then you come storming in and write a masterpiece that ruined my day, lol. :)
Still going to try... But failure seems to be the only option.
And thus the story is finished... Word count: 992
Varas Halden burst through the door, and aimed his bolter down the corridor in front of him. Nothing. There had to be more pirates aboard the ship than the pittiful few that had tried to hold the boarding party off at the airlocks.
He did not lower his aim, even tough no enemies were present. A drawn weapon demanded blood, and one did not draw a weapon if he was not inteding to use it.
He took a few steps into the corridor, and four of his brothers followed after him, all wearing a plain grey suit of power armor. Together they were known as "The infinite sacrifice", the second companys first squad. Varas had named his squad so in respect of the four battle brothers that perished defending the breach at the siege of Ecteneus. The made their way past another bulkhead, and turned to the left. Nothing. The remaining pirates must have retreated deeper into the core of the ship, preparing for an last stand. Or an ambush.
"Cowards," grunted brother Darius behind him. "They have not the courage to face us, no, instead they keep running away from us." Darius was always the one who was eager for the taste of combat, and these sorts of missions were less than suitable for his kind.
"We will face them, rest assured brother, but for some the path of cowardice is easier to walk, that is for granted. They fell from the Emperors light, and they will pay the price." replied Varas, turning to the right and entering a new corridor, with his squad hot at his heals. At the end of the room he saw a black door, with with blue letters saying "Core". From past experience Varas knew that ships of similar class usually had their core levels at the rear middle of the ship. They had to be close. A daring position for a last stand Varas thought, for there was no way out aside from the corridor.
"Forward!"Varas shouted, and as one the squad broke into a run towards the door. Brother Joran sprinted up to Varas side, and hurled a melta bomb in the direction of door. The door exploded, and from behind it came several other explosions, accompanied by the hissing sound of broken venting cores and electric cables. Headless of any possible danger, Varas charged into through the smoke covered entrance, and opened fire with his boltgun. The gun barked twice in his hand, and it was followed by the sounds of las fire and screams. The four brothers of his squad were now standing beside him, spraying a flurry of bolter rounds through the smoke, every shoot followed by the sounds of screams and the sound of exploding bodies. As he marched forward red beams pattered of his armor as if they were mere flies, he fired short bursts, until there was no more return fire, and as he came through the smoke caused by the explosion, he could see a floor pattered with the bodies of the dead. Seven dead, he thought looking at the floor. That could not be all, he thought. The initial scan before the boarding action had revealed over a hundred life forms aboard, and they had met a mere fifth of that number. Where were the other hiding?
"Joran, Heptas. You two stay here, keep the entrance clear. Darius and Metist, with me". After a few minutes of walking through empty corridors, they entered a new room. This one was small, but it was merely a entrance to their objective. They entered a chamber, and in the middle of it, was a ornate table. The table was covered in gold lettering, letters from a language which he did not understand.
"There it is." said brother Darius, pointing at an ornate staff laying on the table.
Varas removed his helmet to examine it. The staff was unlike anything he had seen before. It was made of light blue metal, and at the end of the staff, was an eye. He looked at the eye, and it moved. Varas recoiled backwards, and dropped the staff down. Holy throne of Terra, what sorcery is this? As he gathered his thoughts together, there was a scream of anguish behind him, and the whining sound of a chainsword. Varas drew his own, and turned 180 degrees, only to be faced by a flurry of bolter fire that blew his right arm of. Varas, dropped to his knee, and looked up, to see brother Darius standing there, above the body of brother Metist, with chainsword and bolter in hand.
"Darius?" Varas spitted forth, and his former brother smiled towards him.
"Your kind could never understand this, brother. There is more at stake here than you could possibly imagine." replied Darius, and followed it up by kicking Varas in the face with the sole of his armor.
Varas opened his eyes, and in front of him he saw the armored form of brother Joran.
"What in thrones name?" asked Varas and rose up breathing heavily. He looked at his right arm, or the placed were it used to be. Instead there was a crude bionic arm.
"There was no better replacement to get on the ship." said brother Joran, looking at Varas arm.
"What happened?" asked Varas.
"Darius sent a request for aid, he said that the pirates had attacked and you were pinned down. We found you and the body of brother Metist, but we could not locate brother Dar-"
"No! I remember now. We were never attacked by pirates, brother Darius betrayed us, he killed brother Metist, and he almost killed me."
"Impossible, brother Darius would never..." Joran went silent, and his eyes were filled with hatred.
"We must find him. He took the artefact. With it..." Varas hesitated for a moment, before continuing, "With it, he could unleash such terrible horrors that generations yet unborn would scream out in anguish."
It is to serve as a prequel for a story in my chapters, the Vigilant Icons, background, and that is the reason for the odd ending.
Here is my entry. It sounded intriguing and currently runs at 1056 words according to my word count, discounting title.
The Purging of Slis'thrak
A small task force sent by the greedy, uncaring agency of the inquisition for just one simple task. Eliminate the Daemon Prince Slis’thrak.
The task force, consisting of 5 Ultramarines Honour Guard were led by Inquisitor Joishan Membrance. They were following tracks believed to have been laid by his followers from the burnt out remains of the town in the hope they would lead to the main villain himself.
“Just how far do you think their main encampment is inquisitor?” asked Artorious, the leader of the Honour Guard and one of its most promising members to be promoted to captain.
“They are not too far now.” Replied Joishan, stroking his beard at the tracks arrayed before them. “See how they are more careless now since they believe no-one will have followed them this far”.
What the noble inquisitor had no idea of however was that their every movement was being watched.
Sorcerer of Slaanesh, Bliss’thera, contemplated this new set of arrivals. Clearly these honour guards and their inquisitor would prove to be a worthy challenge for him but he knew he must not be too overconfident. He summoned a member of the chaos marines under his command.
“Kill the men who seek the head of our beloved master”
“How many should be sent out my lord” asked the chaos marine.
“All of your squad and send Glorium the defiler as well. Not one of them has meltabombs so they will not defeat you. In fact I shall join you as well. No need to alert the master at his meditations when we can deal with this.”
They left to set up the ambush.
Inquisitor Joishan felt uneasy. So far their mission had gone easily, almost too easily. However he soon cast these doubts aside when Brother Maxim returned.
“My lord. The chaos camp and their damned master has been sighted over the next ridge”.
“Good, let’s move in with a general advance and despatch them whilst they have not seen our pre.....”
“FOR THE GLORY OF CHAOS!!” A chaos marine jumped out from a nearby bush. Followed by others.
They were mostly armed with close combat weapons although the warriors of the imperium noticed many other armaments on their person. With practiced precision enacted over many centuries of battle the Honour Guard opened fire with their bolters before drawing out revered power weapons. Inquisitor Joishan unleashed the fury of his psycnnon at the traitors and when they came too close beat them off with his sacred daemonhammer. The poorly disciplined warriors fell apart within a few moments. Although their victory was short lived. A Defiler burst through the foliage. At the same time Brother Artorious was dragged along the floor towards the defiler by an ethereal, whip like, energy lash.
“They have a sorcerer!” screamed Joishan as he cast his thoughts on how to deal with both of these unexpected nightmares. He never saw Artorious in his struggle with the defiler. Unfazed as he was dragged towards the mad machine, noticed a meltagun from a Chaos marine who had been shot before his brethren charged. Using fast reflexes he grabbed the weapon from the floor and had wielded it around just in time for being winched in front of the cursed machine. Praying in his faith to the immortal emperor the marine discharged the melta gun and managed to hit the defiler with its volcanic-like blast. The machine keeled over, torso separating from its legs. The legs, unable to operate slumped to the ground. The torso kept growling however until Artorious unleashed a second blast which blew the thing into many tiny pieces. Then he was hit from behind on the floor and lost vision.
Bliss’thera was not happy. These interlopers had defeated his secret weapon but he knew he was going to kill one of them before escaping. However as he stood over the powerless marine, about to unleash a planned monologue his head suddenly exploded.
Inquisitor Joishan had just dashed to where Artorious lay. Brother Maxim noticed the inquisitor grasp a piece of jewellery before the sorcerers head exploded.
“What happened just now Inquisitor?”
“Do not ask that question because there are 3 answers. Each of which is horrifying and true to know” countered the Inqusitor.
“Let’s move from here. We must reach Slis’thrak before we meet others.” The other Space Marines agreed and they swiftly advanced into the camp.
The Inquisitor was able to locate his presence quickly and at a big cave. However soon upon arriving at the cave the rest of the Daemons warband arrived to protect their master.
“You must confront the Daemon Inquisitor! You are the only one capable of defeating the monstrosity!” Shouted Artorious.
The Inquisitor nodded and advanced into the cave. Robes trailing.
Joishan reached the centre of the cave. However he was most surprised to see the Daemon confront him.
“Well. It seems that not any normal Inquisitor has come for me. I am impressed with those brought here. You truly are great at your craft.” Growled Slis’thrak.
“You will die here Slis’thrak!” Bellowed the Inquisitor.
“Drop the rhetoric dear Inquisitor. I know who you really are.”
Joishan once again grasped his jewellery. And charged the daemon.
The 2 Chaos Marines stood outside the cave. They had charged the Ultramarines along with their many brethren and after long fighting had defeated and killed every one of them. However many of the warband had not survived and it was deemed necessary to leave this planet before more enemies arrived.
As the 2 marines began arguing about who was to report the losses to Slis’thrak the first marine was blown across the camp by a powerful force of lightning. He died nearly instantaneously and the second marine saw the thin, lithe figure responsible for the carnage emerge from the cave and charged it. His head exploded soon after his desperate charge.
The Eldar Farseer looked over him with a passing curiosity. He cared nothing to the rest of the panet. Only that his own agenda had been completed. He grasped his spirit stone and psychically opened communications with the craftworld.
“My job here is done. Both Slis’thrak and Artorious, the biggest threats to our craftworld have been neutralised. Extract me immediately.” Farseer Calvyn’eia smiled beneath his helm as he walked away from the charred remains of the camp.
Hope it fits requirements. I thought it would be funny to have an Eldar Farseer masquerade as an Inquisitor to gain access to valuable tools and in this case betray his allies so that his craftworld survives. A double betrayal of sorts. It was certainly fun to write.
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