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post #21 of 54 (permalink) Old 01-28-14, 10:37 PM
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He can’t remember anything, not a single fact that could explain this little hellhole he had just been spat out of. But he feels as if he’s fought a hundred struggles against a dire enemy and known triumph and defeat in equal measure. He can feel the unbridled strength coursing through his veins and propelling his massive physique. Had he always been this way? He couldn’t recall.

He spits tank fluid from his mouth and wipes it clean. He doesn’t remember his name or any other of the three surrounding him. Bending over to rest his hands on his knees, trying to block out the throbbing pains wracking his body proved more troublesome than his memory. In that moment, he catches a black number scarred deep into his own skin on shoulder. Zero-Thirteen. The marks had been left as an obvious clue to give himself a name, it would have to suffice.

Zero-Thirteen took in the room with a glance, his eyes rapidly adjusting to the change in lighting. Several corpses are lying before them and one of the tanks had been heavily breached. The other had miraculously opened up, letting a number forty-eight emerge with the rest of them. Within the span of an eye blink, he somehow managed to process everything with utter ease.

He knew from the moment he awoke, that this wasn’t a place to simply wonder around in. Something had attacked these people, most likely whoever smashed that pod open. Whether that was done by whoever was in there or something else remained to be seen. There would be no telling from the blood stains, with the dead’s vital fluids mixing together. But something was on the prowl, feral or cruelly calculating, driven on the murder path.

Zero-Thirteen gazes at the other three also in the room and attempts to think back on how he may have ended here. He didn’t feel like trusting them, but he didn’t feel like being a lone wolf either. “If no one can recall my name, Zero-Thirteen will suffice, if anyone desired to know… Where the hell are we?”

Treading briskly across the room and sweeping his eyes over everything, another unopened pod caught his eyes. A sharp whistle later, he inclines his head toward the outline of another beast of a man trapped within.

“Any ideas? As much as I want to be rid of this place, we may need all the help we can muster.”

“Evil is relative…You can’t hang a sign on it. You can’t touch it or taste it or cut it with a sword. Evil depends on where you are standing, pointing your indicting finger.”
-Glen Cook, The Black Company


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post #22 of 54 (permalink) Old 01-29-14, 08:31 PM
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I woke slowly, wincing as the bright white light nearly blinded me. I sat up, blinking several times and taking in the situation. My last memory was of smashing a bottle over the head of a black armoured soldier who had grown impatient of my, what was it again? Ah yes, ‘foolish time wasting’...

***

“...Sir, are you actually listening to me?” The voice of my first sergeant brought me out of my reverie. Those damn memories of Trident, they were still fresh in my mind. Men screaming as the hangar bay was flooded with promethium and set alight. The choking cries of second squad as the corridor they were in had all the air vented. The howls of the first man I ever left behind, torn apart by the cultists as we exited the base through the unshielded hangar door, our stolen craft flung deep into space by the plasma core meltdown that tore the ship apart.

I pushed the memories aside and grinned at my sergeant. “Sorry my friend, you were saying?”

“There are several black armoured governor’s troops waiting outside, they want to speak with you on something although they wouldn’t tell me what. They seem rather impatient and eager to leave as soon as possible. Indeed one of them, a brute of a man, seemed tempted to shove past me and demand you leave right now. They also mentioned a Dr Gregory Crowe, saying he was the man who interviewed you a week ago.”

“Ah yes, I remember him. He never informed me why it was he was interviewing me. I assume this is why.”

As I spoke, a huge figure opened the door and stalked in. My hand closed around the neck of the amasec bottle on the table, long since drunk in a toast to the dead by me and my senior NCOs. As the man, presumably the one my sergeant had mentioned as impatient, marched towards me he was muttering under his breath. As he came closer I heard the words clearly. “...damned foolish time wasting, I’ve had enough of this.”

“Hold soldier,” I snapped at him as he reached for me. He hesitated a moment, then snarled and grabbed my arm anyway. I brought my right knee up between his legs, doubling him over. Then I brought my right hand, still grasped around the neck of the empty bottle, crashing down over his head and the glass smashed, sending the man face first into the floor. I heard a click and glanced towards the entrance to see another figure in black armour holding a gun in their right hand. The gun spat, I felt a slight impact on my cheek and everything went black.

***

“Fuck,” I hissed as I sat up, my hands clutching my head. That bastard really had wanted me to come quietly; the arsehole must have used a tranquiliser. It gave me a splitting headache that made every light seem blinding, every sound deafening.

I nearly collapsed again but forced myself to remain upright and opened my eyes, bringing my hands down to my sides. I didn’t know any of the men I was with except by reputation and I knew better than to show any weakness to men I could not be sure would not use it against me. Elsen Strab Von Kerg was easy to recognise from his injuries and had a reputation as an excellent field officer and if my suspicions were correct 272 was Nicholas Jozwick, another man with an excellent reputation for leadership, intelligence and courage. But I knew neither man personally and had no idea of the identity of the rest. I didn’t know if I could trust them.

"These two...I bet these two don't make it." The voice of 001 brought me back to focus and I saw he was pointing at me and 051. I laughed grimly though the laugh devolved into a hacking cough. What the fuck had that guy put in me. “You’d be surprised what I’ve survived sir.”

But 001 ignored me, focussing his gaze on 128. Then the room began to fill with gas and I felt my body weakening as it entered through slits in the walls. My vision began going black once again and the one word I had time to say before everything went black summed up the situation perfectly. “Shit.”

***

Who am I? That was my first thought upon awakening. I no longer remembered anything, as if I were a newborn with no memories to remember. All I felt was loss.

I thrashed about in my tank, beating against the glass. The mechanisms holding it shut finally gave way and I collapsed forwards, falling to hands and knees outside the tank and coughing up fluid. Only then did I hear the wailing siren and the footsteps of others in the room.

I stood quickly, protecting my body and trying to gaze every direction at once. It had the feel of an ingrained reflex, though I could not remember how I had learned it or when. Even as I did it, I regretted it as a shooting pain hit me in my back. It hurt so badly I almost staggered. Holding myself upright, I almost lashed out when several servitors sprayed me with chemicals and moved to disconnect cables as fluid streamed down my body. Robotic arms swung in to check me as others did this and gave me time to survey my situation.

I saw three other men standing nearby and took in their appearance. I did not recognise them and so instantly viewed them as a possible threat. Then I realised they were the least of my problems. As I stood, shivering and in pain, I looked over a corridor filled with death. Bodies in white medical uniforms and hulking cybernetic humans in red robes lay on the floor and I moved quickly over to the other three, preferring the threat I could see to the one I couldn't. “Where are we?” I said, gazing across the room.

We stand upon the precipice of change. The world fears the inevitable plummet into the abyss. Watch for that moment - and when it comes, do not hesitate to leap. It is only when you fall that you learn whether you can fly.
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The greatest trick the Devil ever pulled was convincing the world he didn't exist.
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post #23 of 54 (permalink) Old 01-31-14, 09:30 PM
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Powerful laughter resonated through the room as 77 threw back his head. Nicholas was a little shocked by this sudden burst of noise, but did not let it show. Instead he let his smile spread wider as if appreciating the same joke as 77. Then 1’s voice slithered underneath the deep bellowing waves of laughter. Although he spoke of him, the man seemed to eye up each of them at the same time. Nicholas was not a man usually unnerved, but there was something about this man that unsettled him, something few people managed to do. It was like watching an aquatic hunter with its dead eyes emptily surveying the space in front of it for prey. It never looked straight at you, but at the same time you could feel its gaze on you as it stared straight through you. 1 reminded Nicholas of such a hunter.

77’s laughter turned savagely into a loud chastisement of Elsen’s salute. Nicholas had found it quaint that the man still abided by the military traditions that in Nicholas’s experience only the most tight arsed commanders insisted everyone obey constantly. 77 referenced him and Nicholas wondered whether these two that had kept largely to them were offering him genuine compliments. Guile they seemed fully capable of, but both seemed capable of chastising him if they thought his comments stupid. They referred to their ‘associates’ telling them about the rest of the candidates gathered in the room. Nicholas couldn’t help but wonder if they were privy to more information than the rest of them and if so, why? Perhaps their designation or rank was not wholly sarcastic, or perhaps they were plans put in here by those monitoring them to get a better gauge of the rest of them. After all, Nicholas hadn’t seen anyone else who was part of this project before now, and he assumed the rest of them hadn’t. What did they have to base an assumption that they were really part of this project on other than the jumpsuits they wore, which could have been easily made for them so they would blend in better.

1 positioned the sword of Damocles over 48 and 51, furthering Nicholas’s suspicions that the two of them were somehow in on this whole thing. Either that or 1 possessed the gift of foresight and they had a psyker in their midst. The thought of 1 being able to read his thoughts at this moment made Nicholas uncomfortable and he attempted to raise whatever mental walls he thought might serve as some proof against such an invasion. A mutation like that would certainly help to explain 1’s peculiar appearance, voice, stare and all round personhood. If that were the case it would certainly be a logical choice to include a man who can read other’s minds without their knowledge if you wanted to conduct a covert evaluation. 77 seemed un-phased by the fact that his comrade was apparently ignoring his topic of conversation, implying that these two had some prior knowledge of each other and 77 had just come to accept 1’s actions as normal. This led Nicholas two conclusions. Either he was right and these two were just plants to test them covertly, or these two were connected somehow which meant there was a logic to this whole thing that eluded Nicholas’s grasp. Neither option was preferable to him.

However, before his could think on these matters much more, gas began to uncoil like a serpent from vent in the walls, hissing as it went. Two options presented themselves to Nicholas; either they had failed and they were about to die and be disposed of, or they were being knocked out and moved elsewhere. Either way, he would not slump into some awkward position as this unknown gas took its effect. So Nicholas slid down onto the floor and lay on his back, as if he were about to go to sleep for the night. His eyes focused on the blinding white lights imbedded into the ceiling. The brightness of them was so intense that they hurt his eyes, leaving burnt shadows on his retina that he could see every time he blinked. But he refused to stop staring at them as the gas filled his lungs and his limbs and mind became heavy. Even if he had wanted to move, by now Nicholas doubted he had control of his limbs. It was all he could do to keep his eyes open, even as stinging tear rolled down his face from staring at the lights for too long. It took longer between each blink for Nicholas to open his eyes again, and the blissful clarity of those harsh sterile lights seemed to last for shorter and shorter lengths of time before they went out completely.
++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++ ++++++++++

His life began as every life begins; immersed in fluid and only able to breath because of various tubes attached or inserted into one’s body. He finally achieved the first moments of consciousness of his life and was immediately aware of the device inserted into his mouth, the force of the liquid he was suspended in holding him in approximately the middle of this elaborate glass container he was in, but most importantly the pain that radiated from his core outwards and seemed to latch on to every nerve, muscle fibre, bone and scrap of skin on its journey out wards. He made a noise which without the rebreather in his mouth and the fluid around him would have been clearly recognisable as a weary sigh. He had only just achieved life and it felt like if the pain got any worse it would threaten to tear it from his grasp before he had a chance to experience any of it.

The blue hued liquid began to drain into a grate beneath his floating body and as the fluid levels decreased, he floated down until his feet and legs were forced to support his own weight. He feared that they would not be able to, for what new-born infant would be able to walk the moment it was disgorged from the womb. However, much to his pleasure he discovered that the powerful muscles in his legs comfortably supported his mass and after the initial strain of landing on his feet, resumed their protest of pain at the same volume the rest of his body was speaking to him at. As soon as the fluid had all drained, the capsule containing him opened and abruptly forced him out. His legs moved with an innate understanding of movement, but the proportions of his body and the strength in his limbs was so unanticipated that his first steps resembled a stumble before he righted himself.

The capsule thrust him into a world of blaring noise and repeating flashed of red that seemed in time with the beat of his own pulse. Where these angry red flares didn’t reach was wreathed in darkness and besides the hiss of the capsules he had just exited. Two other stumbled out of similar capsules next to his. They had number etched into their flesh, 128 and 13 respectively. He looked down and saw a similar brand on his chest; 272. His whole identity was contained in that number. Did it mean something? Did it correspond to letters or some addition of all the numerical values of his name? Was it some kind of code that he was meant to understand? If it was, whoever had assigned this identity to him had clearly not anticipated the amnesia he was now suffering. Perhaps his memory was always faulty and this was just the latest in a stream of forgetful births he had endured.

Half-machine cenobites emerged from behind the harsh glare of the warning klaxons, the purpose of the red lights apparently deemed more important than his identity to preserve, and 272 knew that they meant him no harm. They came with some sort of hose which washed the remaining blue liquid off of him and into the draining paths beneath his feet. After all the fluid was cleaned off of them, these man-machines contented themselves to disconnect the tubes and needles which had not already done so from their three forms before shuffling back into the darkness and apparently becoming inert, presumably waiting for one of the two remaining tanks to be opened and their occupants similarly birthed into this angry world of red and slowly numbing pain. One of the thrashed as if he were in a considerable amount of pain and the other hung there peacefully, how 272 imagined he had looked moments before.

272 and his counterparts began to move and survey their surroundings. The corridor looked like a charnel house, lined with the bodies of dead men and women and scattered and rent machine parts that would have once formed bipedal frames resembling people. 13 stated that he could not remember his name either, a fact that comforted 272 to know he was not the only one, before informing them that his number and therefore identity was, in fact, 13. “Funnily enough, we can all still read.” 272 quipped derisively. He did not answer the second part of 13’s question because he had no answer, nor was one immediately evident. That they were in some kind of military compound was plain enough from their surroundings, but anything other than the nature of their birthing chamber eluded 272.

A shiver forced the muscles in 272’s neck to spasm uncontrollably and for the first time he acknowledge that he was both cold and in pain. A machine placed a simple beige robe over him but it was little proof against the chill of this place and the coldness of the metal beneath his feet. 272 regarded the other capsules which stretched away from the hallway which reeked of death. Two had been opened exactly like the ones the three of them had been disgorged from, one broken violently from the inside, judging by the shatter pattern of the glass, and cables still hung loosely from it where the occupant had violently torn them from their place. 13 bleated inanely about whether anyone knew how to operate the capsule he stood in front of, the one with the still individual in it. The occupant in the next capsule along still thrashed madly and 272 wondered if they would have two broken capsules in a moment. 272 sighed. He almost launched into berating 13 for asking such a stupid question. Unless it was just the two of them suffering from amnesia, he doubted anyone knew how to operate one of these things. But some instinct told him to remain composed, read the people and surroundings and respond accordingly.

“I imagine it’ll open when…” 272 began saying when the capsule containing the more lively of the two remaining foetuses opened and spilled its thrashing child into the same world of alarms and death that they had been born into. Whilst all of their breathing seemed forced, and thus 272 deduced they were all feeling similar levels of pain to him, 48 who had just been disgorged from his capsule seemed in even more pain, his breathing shorter and his chest hiking uncomfortably. So much so that at one point he legs threatened to buckle. Clearly this process they’d been through had not been so well received by all their bodies. The man seemed jumpy, as if he feared they were going to attack him. That seemed like a waste of time to 272. They had all be freshly born in bodies far more well-endowed with muscle than those dead in the corridor, so it made no sense for them to start killing each other. Unless there was something to be gained from it, and at this stage, cold and in pain as they all were, fighting each other would gain them nothing.

48 burbled the same inane question of their location. 272 rolled his eyes, although hidden by the heavy shadows he doubted anyone else saw him do it. They were all in the same position, why did everyone assume they were the only one in the dark? If the just looked at the facts in front of them, the fact that they had all just be spat out of liquid filled capsules and the fact that they all seemed to have gone through the same process to make them considerably larger than what 272 imagined a normal human was, it was easy to assess that they were all in the same boat. Clearly, these two were cretins and could not be trusted. 128 had yet to speak, so his intelligence might still balance out this motley crew, but it was also possible that 272 was the only one possessed of both a functioning brain and such a powerful physique, having not traded it in like these other two had. Still, a nagging voice in the back of his mind told him to not abuse them until he had determined they were entirely without use. “That’s the same question we’re all asking.” 272 replied disinterestedly to 48.

“As I was saying…” 272 continued talking to 13 “I imagine they’ll open when whatever process it completed on us is similarly completed on our friend here.” 272 tapped the glass with his curved first finger. “However, judging by the number of tubes and needle stuck in all of us, it’s probably some form of complex medical procedure, and tampering with it will likely only endanger whoever that is in there.” There was a chance that the silhouette was still-born, but it wouldn’t help to burden 13’s brain with such a possibility. 272 walked away from the tank and toward the corridor. “If you all are so keen to find out where we are and what we’re doing here, I don’t think we’re going to find the answers here. Best we get moving, before whatever killed them comes back to try and pick a fight with us.” 272 where they were was a minor detail. Your position could be determined by a GPS or a map or any other kinds of tracking technology, software or intuition. The question that 272 found more burning and far more important was why they were here…

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post #24 of 54 (permalink) Old 02-04-14, 03:26 AM
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Strange Bastard looked around, eyes locking on Ptolemy. In that odd, mellifluous voice, he said - 'Apparently, Two-Seven-Two is the smarter one.'

That made Ptolemy's eyes narrow. He looked at Nicholas, who was standing near his seat, and pursed his lips. He was so bland, so unremarkable, that it hurt. Handsome Bastard spoke, now - Mentioning associates, making a mockery of the other candidates, indicating the Lieutenant, Elsen. The name rang a bell - Ptolemy couldn't quite pinpoint where he'd heard it - But there was an air of familiarity about it. That could mean two things - Either Elsen was an outstanding, shining paragon of servitude and morality, or; he was a right bastard and deserved nothing but a noose. Probably the latter, Ptolemy mused, as he watched the man salute. His hand, his talon, was of high quality. That was interesting.

Ptolemy continued drumming his fingers against the bench. Strange Bastard said something particularly morose, pointing his fingers to two of the candidates - One-Eye and Lazy Bastard - And intoned that he thought the unworthy. The Intelligence Officer - Was he still an Intelligence Officer? - Swung his head around, a grin parting those soft, cherry-red lips, and met the yellow eyes of Strange Bastard. It was somewhat disconcerting, but Ptolemy matched his stare, the grin never leaving his face.

That was when the hissing begun, almost too quiet to hear. Ptolemy sniffed - An acrid stench clinging to the inside of his nostrils, and let out a low, mournful growl. Purple gas, flecked with golds and greens, was rising from the floor, enshrouding the other candidates. Yet, Ptolemy and Strange Bastard kept staring, intense as a firefight, as their limbs grew heavy and unresponsive, their vision blurred into darkness. The last thing Ptolemy saw, as he slumped over, was those strange, malign eyes, boring into his own.

***

When he awoke, he was surrounded by thick, murky water. No, not water - It was blue. Water wasn't blue, was it? There was a figure before him, through a barrier of glass, robed and hunched. Even though it was crouched over, examining something on the floor, it was big - Larger than a man, faceless and fearsome. Behind it, a pack of similar creatures - For they could not be human - Were running towards an exit, nothing more but a distant glimmer of light. The figure before him snapped its head upwards, tilted it in curiosity, and then turned, bolting after the others.

He could not remember his name, his age, his occupation - He was an object, an enigma. His head hurt- Oh, God-Emperor, it hurt. His whole body was aflame, crisscrossed with pale, near-invisible scars. Thick wires, throbbing with power, were plugged into his flesh, and they hurt, too. Everything hurt, everything was crying out in agony, begging for release.

He rammed his fist into the glass. Muscles, large and defined and handsome, bulged along his arm. His punch was sluggish, like a drunkard's, and did no damage on the thick door - At least, he believed it was a door. Twice more he lashed out, and twice more he found his efforts accumulated to naught. He was trapped, stabbed with wires and burning within. Only the breathing apparatus, a crude grille, which was attached to his face, kept him alive. The liquid started draining after his third punch, slow, too slow. It ran from his head, passed his eyes, draining away with a gurgle. When his head was clear, he lifted his hands and tore the breathing device free, gasping for air. Thick, blood-dappled phlegm dripped from the corners of his mouth, his lungs emptying an untold amounts worth of slime. He tried to talk, but his tongue felt swollen and numb.

He was being born again. The glass panel lifted, red light and the keening of alarms filling his ears, his eyes, his head. He attempted a step forwards and fell, landing on sore knees and palms, coughing rheumy fluid. Wires disconnected from his pale flesh, dripping with viscous blood and other, stranger liquids. Everything stank of disinfectant, blood and oil. What was this place? Where am I?

A number - One-Two-Eight - Was carved into his solar plexus. He scratched it, and decided in that red-bathed room, that One-Two-Eight was his name. What was he? Was he a beast, a genetic throwback, something altogether fouler? No, he realised. He was muscled immensely, built like an athlete - Bigger, stronger. He looked like a statue. His flesh was cold and hard.

One-Two-Eight stood, unsteadily, and surveyed his surroundings. There were others with him, abominable servitors and other tall, strong figures. A robe, plain and rough, was lowered over him by one of the milky-eyed servitors, after a spray down of tepid liquids. Down below, curled up in pathetic death-poses, were bodies. Some were clad in scarlet, others in white. Flesh-artisans, scientists and murderers and creatures that did not deserve the title of Humanity. One-Two-Eight made his way towards these, limping as blood flowed back into stiff, unsteady limbs.

The one marked with Two-Seven-Two was beginning to formulate a plan. One-Two-Eight listened to him halfheartedly; agreeing with some points, disagreeing with others. He needed a weapon, something to defend himself with, and the only likely option, was one of the dead.

He pressed his foot onto one of the red-robed corpses, rolled it over, and crouched down. His hands pressed against the robes, slipped beneath them. He had to be armed, he had to be.

'Whilst you lot stand around and bitch,' One-Two-Eight spat, as he searched. 'I'm going to get out of here. Follow me, if you like,' He turned his eyes to Two-Seven-Two. They glittered hungrily, like a frost-lion's. 'Or don't. But, I'm not staying. This is a mausoleum.'

Nyctophobia- Fear of the Dark Angel.

"No one ever spoke about of those two absent brothers. Their separate tragedies had seemed like aberrations. Had they, in fact, been warnings that no one had heeded?"

'Killing a man is like fucking, boy, only instead of giving life you take it. You experience the ecstasy of penetration as your warhead enters the enemy's belly and the shaft follows. You see the whites of his eyes roll inside the sockets of his helmet. You feel his knees give way beneath him and the weight of his faltering flesh draw down the point of your spear. Are you picturing this?'
'Yes, lord.'
'Is your dick hard yet?'
'No, lord.'
''What? You've got your spear in a man's guts and your dog isn't stiff? What are you, a woman?'

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post #25 of 54 (permalink) Old 02-05-14, 03:06 AM
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Raucous laughter fills the chamber as 077 throws his head back, theatrically, and claps his hands together one time.

001, his yellow eyes still staring at seemingly all of you at once, says, "Apparently, 272 is the smarter one."

"Sit down fool!" yells 077. "Our associates told us the remaining numbers were allcunningindividuals. I see now, they are so cunning that they can't even pick up on obvious sarcasm! not to mention queasy-belly over here! There is no way of telling what rank any of us really are. The only reason I know you're actually a lieutenant is because of your reputation among the ranks,Kerg. I know your face." He points to his own with his index finger as he says this.

"272 is right," he continues, "rank is meaningless here. They left us no way of designating it."

Suddenly, raising a long arm pointing two fingers, one of them at 051, and the other at the still awaking 048, 001 abruptly changes the subject saying, "These two...I bet these two don't make it."
Eisen was going to kill each and every one of these three impudent asses. He'd never been especially fond of the summary executions granted to commanding officers under the Imperial Military Code of Justice – but to impersonate a superior officer purely for the purpose of shaming him?

To hell with rank and to hell with whomever was watching. They wanted the clockwork Lieutenant? The man without a heart. Then they damn well got him. He would feed force feed their innards from his bloodied hand just to watch them struggle to draw breath.

As rage filled the void where his heart had once been a hissing whoosh of gas flooded the chamber, rendering his intended streak of violence impotent – much to his chagrin. His augmentic eye, unaffected by the gasses, stared helplessly out at his compatriots has the strength bled from his body.

He gasped for life, for breath, horrified as his augmentics failed him – for then first time since his liberation from the Nexian Cartels truly feeling helpless. A decade of connections, blackmail, and forging alliances – it was all for nothing. He was not going to die in this sterile hell-hole, surrounded by men who laughed at him for his convictions – his purpose.

Clawing at the walls of his own fleshy prison, a cloying darkness overwhelmed even Eisen's formidable will. His last memory as consciousness escaped him was the simple and overwhelming need to survive. Eisen was a survivor – a killer and a monster – but a survivor. Come damnation he would still survive.

And if it took him a thousand lifetimes – he was going to kill the bastard who planned this.

-+-

Quote:
When you come back into a state of consciousness, the first thing you feel is extremely intense heat. The burning hell of a hot poker going through your eye and moving around on the inside of your skull. Then all you can feel is cold. You manage to raise your head out of deep snow, and find your whole body half sunk into it. Its night here, windy beyond reason, and still snowing furiously, though most of it feels like tiny shards of ice. As you go to stand up, your legs fail you and you fall again. You notice large gashes and cuts on your red washed hand and arms. Frost has collected quickly on the parts of your mechanical limb, sticking to the drying and freezing blood. Your only clothing is some form of undergarment.

Some ways in the distance behind you is a bright light, coming from an opening in what appears to be a large structure of some kind. You can hear a thrumming siren coming from the building, and see only your footsteps in the snow leading from it.
The pain had come and gone. There would be more pain, more blood, and more suffering. There was always more suffering.

Snow and cold were the first things he was aware of – an odd chill greeting his nascent stumbling through the tundra. He wobbled like a freshly whelped colt on unfamiliar limbs. His body did not respond properly. It was a bit like wearing a pair of shoes sized for someone else, his natural gait was that of a man a foot shorter in his shanks. His mechanical augmentations responded with equal alien precision – unpracticed and sloppy.

His mouth stung with a dryness born of frost and pharmaceuticals, his lips already cracking and chapped from the cold. Survive – he had to survive. He did not know where he was nor did he care why he was there.

Frost whipped across his face- biting his flesh with cold. The blood – perhaps not all his blood – congealed across his flesh and metal, tinged with flecks of red-black frost. He shivered in the cold, rubbing his numb fingers across the protrusion of metal jutting from where an eye should be. The dull green light of the optic fluttered as he touched it – shifting between spectrums of light. He shut his other eye to prevent the wave of nausea that came from conflicting visual input as he cycled back to something resembling regular vision – a slightly green image

He was escaping. But to where? And why? Enemies would be coming soon. They always did.

He could not run – would not run.

No – someone would come for him – likely someone with answers. Possibly someone with a weapon he could take. Wandering naked through the winter tundra seemed a waste. He had nowhere to go in any event. Better to head towards an obvious danger than wander aimlessly through frost and wilderness.

He walked backwards over his own footsteps – taking care not to leave any obvious signs that he had back-tracked along his own path as he approached the door. He hopped to the side as he reached a good couple yards from the opening – far enough that his new tracks would not be seen by anyone from inside the building.

Pulling himself along the ground with his hands and knees, he concealed himself behind snow-covered shrubbery. Closing his fleshy eye he stared out towards the aperture from betwixt the thick foliage with his telescoping optic – catching the lay of the land.

There was something here that he'd bled for - something he'd been willing to kill for. It would show itself.
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"What do you mean they woke up early!?" Shouted Governor Phlintte at the top of his lungs, the loose hairs of his short white beard quivering with every word.

Magos Cyyrik stood still, his red hood draping his facial features in shadow despite the bright orange glow of his iris shaped visual augments. Cyyrik was tall, very tall, and his robes lay heavily over his form. The lead Artisan-Designer Magos of Chemorus Alpha stood in the Governor's chamber, alone with the furious mortal man...again.

The Magos looked up. His eyes bore into anything they looked at, no matter his mood and despite where he stared. They only moved with the rest of his head, whichever way it turned. Phlinnte stared back into the black cave, into those fiery circles, as unintimidated as usual.

"I said I don't know."

As hollow as his voice was, it was very clear compared to many priests of Mars. Though, where it came from exactly, was a mystery.

"Only one of them died in its amniotic tank due to the unexpected release, the rest seem to have-"

"ONLY ONE! Only ONE of them died!" Phlinnte roared throwing his hands in the air and walking in zig-zagging, circular patterns that made no logical sense to Cyyrik.

"Yes, Lord Governor. Despite being connected to several stabilization systems and medicinal pumps, Subject 051 did not survive the premature-"

Cyrrik was cut off again.

"I couldn't care less which one it was, Cyyrik! What I do care about is the absolutely insane weight on my shoulders due to this project! I had to extract the Imperium's tithe money just to fund this, drove my own office and councilmen into the ground with secrecy and errand, and if found out I would likely be judged as committing heresy! By the Emperor's name!" Phlintte takes a moment to breathe, gripping the back of a cushioned chair. "Since I decided to actually go through with this project, it has to be successful, or the entire Chemorus system is doomed, Magos, not just me. The fact that only a handful of the hundreds we selected made it this far is bad enough..."

"I understand, lord Governor. I would encourage you to remember that these Saviors are the prototypes. Even if only one were to survive, each one is a lesson as to what we have done right, and what we have done wrong. Your army will follow. As the Emperor did with the Primarchs and his legions."

"Bah!" said Phlintte, waving his hand in dismissal, "Don't give me comparisons using ridiculous myths. Get word to Diatre and the rest of his entourage to-"

This time it was Cyyrik who interrupted, "I would also encourage you to remember that if the arms traders feel disrespected, they may very well back out of this project, lord Governor. Diatre and his men have provided us with resources that would otherwise have been impossible to obtain."

In a hurry, the chamber doors opened and another figure dressed in the red of the Mechanicus enters. Cyyrik moves for the first time. His upper portion turning, and leaning slightly, to look at the newcomer. It was the Magos who first brought a well formulated plan for the project to the Lord Governor's ears, 95Jx-Tar VI. But that was not the name he preferred.

"You have news, Voldyrin Tar?" asked the Governor expectantly.

In an awful, grinding vocalization, Tar replied. "Diatre's team has searched the entire complex and has lost one of his men.... The other two subjects remain lost."

Rogal Phlintte was still gripping his fingers into the cushioned chair, until it was sent flying across the room.

---------------------------------


The red beat of the warning klaxons continues without pause, as does the drumming of the alarm.

128, 013, 272, and 048

128 ruffles his hands through the robes and cloaks of several bodies. He finds nothing that resembles a weapon of any significance: several small medical tools of various types, clipboards, broken communicators, and some items he has no name for.

272 makes his way from the unopened tank after tapping on it's glass. 013 makes his way up the short ramp to inspect it closer. The figure inside has yet to show any indications of movement. He hesitates to tamper with anything, heeding 013's words.

128 finally appears to find something, but when he stands up it becomes clear that he's holding a mechanical limb torn from one of the cybernetic bodies covered in a red cloak. It is an arm with a fairly large clamp-like fixture on the end rather than a hand. In its current state, and slightly longer than his own fore-arm, 128 clearly intends it as a clubbing weapon. The rest of you search briefly for a similar limb but find none.

He and 272 then make to leave, and 013 and 048 decide to follow. Both sides of the room have a large double doored entryway. The entry way on one side is closed and locked, but the other is wide open. The doors are thick and metal, armored in fact. They remain in their slide-opened position as the group approaches. Before even turning into the enormous hallway, another sound becomes overtly clear. Running footsteps getting closer, and plenty of them. Boots, accompanied by rattling metal.

You hear multiple thunks. The red warning lights catch on the can-shaped projectiles just before they land and start violently spewing gas. Instinctively you all cover your faces. However, after a few moments nothing is different. Your breathing is fine, your eyes hardly water, and you still feel wide awake and alive. The only thing it does is obscure your vision, filling the hallway with a thick fog.

You hear a distinct command, "Fire!" followed by dozens of tranquilizer darts piercing the clouds of gas. All of you are hit by several needle-ends, injecting their fluid into your bodies upon impact. Again, there seems to be no effect.

The four of you then manage to make your way into a thinning section of the smog, and are immediately charged by a group of two dozen men all clad in black from head to toe, who immediately start beating against your bodies with electrical stun clubs, swinging over and over again as if their lives depended on it...

You have three choices and they are as follows: 1. You may attempt to throw the guards off of you and run. If you choose to do so you will be successful. Your post will end with you re-immersing yourself into the gas cloud and heading down the opposite direction of the hallway. 2. You may surrender to them, by holding up your hands and not resisting, they will bring you to your knees and put restraints on your arms and feet you cannot break out of. 3. You may fight back. You can incapacitate them, or you may kill them, but no more than six. Therefore, if all four of you attack, all twenty four men will be dead. The guards are normal humans, so having an Astartes like body, it wont be too much of a struggle. The weapons they are striking you WILL be somewhat effective, though. They will do more to slow you down than the gas or tranquilizers at any rate.

111:

Even for your new body, the cold soon becomes too much, and with no noticeable movement of any kind, you make your final steps back inside the building through the open doorway which has its control panel destroyed on the opposite side of the wall. You immediately see five bodies dressed in all black torn limb from limb. They were all wearing light body armor. These men are noticeably smaller than you are. You find their weapons: five shotguns all empty and broken with no more ammo on the bodies. Oddly, these guns almost look like toys to you. In the better light, you notice several bloody but clotted dents in the side of your ribcage. You also notice the black lines in your chest and shoulder forming the number 111. The walls here are covered in bullet holes.


You move through the artificial white light and red klaxon flares with as much stealth as you can. The alarm that is sounding covers any noise you might be making. You find your way into a large open room. It is a cafeteria, and moving to one end of the room with many appliances behind a counter, you quickly find cutlery and grab the largest you find. As soon as you hold it in your hand though, it seems incredibly small.

There are three double doored entrances to this room. One is the way you came in.

You exit one of the other sets and take a peak around the corner of the short entranceway down the hall. You instantly see two figures moving in your direction at a fast pace, and these ones are at least as large as you are. At their current rate, they will be next to you in seconds.

You have two options and they are as follows: 1. You may attempt to attack these two individuals. If this is your decision, please PM me and we will sort out some important details. 2. You may attempt to avoid them by going back into the cafeteria room and going through the other set of doors. You may still carry the knife if you wish.

You can never be prepared for the unexpected



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post #27 of 54 (permalink) Old 02-09-14, 08:42 PM
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One-Two-Eight opened his mouth to speak and Two-Seven-Two was glad that he didn’t stammer the same idiotic questions as the other two. Instead, despite his crass and vindictive delivery, Two-Seven-Two found himself agreeing with One-Two-Eight, mainly because it echoed what he already said. One-Two-Eight kept a long moment of eye contact with Two-Seven-Two. The edge of his lips curled into a handsome smirk and his eyes glinted, enjoying the fact that there was at least one other person in this world of confusion and pain who possessed some level of intelligence. “Well said.” Two-Seven-Two said, his voice smooth and genuinely complimentary of his comrade, whilst at the same time his eyes broke contact with One-Two-Eight and looked at the other two, indicating that if they had any sense they would follow them.

Two-Seven-Two left Thirteen to stare at the unborn child and made his way over to where One-Two-Eight was hastily undressing the corpses in search of something. The man produced a mechanical limb as long as his own forearm, brandishing it with murderous intent. It would be nothing more than a crude clubbing implement, but with the power hidden in each of their muscles; it hardly needed to be more than that. Two-Seven-Two turned over the few corpses that One-Two-Eight hadn’t pilfered and found nothing of any use. Clearly these men and machine-hybrids had not expected their children to turn on them. Perhaps they were supposed to have undergone some sort of indoctrination that would make them docile, but had been born prematurely? Or perhaps they had come here willingly, as test subjects, when they were whoever or whatever they were before this world of beating red lights and blaring alarms? Two-Seven-Two stored it as information that might pertain to their reason for being here.

Two-Seven-Two made his way towards the closed door, wondering if it would lead anywhere. He approached it and it showed no desire to open automatically for him. The control panel next to the doors seemed to incorporate both a key-pad to enter passwords into and an iris scanner and Two-Seven-Two suspected he would not be on the database which would store to approved irises and he was certain he did not remember something a small as the password to this door, since even to memory of how he came to be here was hidden from him or simply non-existent. That exit barred to him, he turned and headed towards the only entrance or exit to their birthing chamber. As he did so he explained to One-Two-Eight “Locked. It was worth a shot.”

Him and One-Two-Eight made to leave and Two-Seven-Two heard two sets of footsteps following them. Clearly Thirteen and Forty-Eight had decided to follow. Good, he might discover their purpose yet. As he walked Two-Seven-Two noticed that his steps fell into a natural pattern which seemed to be soundless. Two-Seven-Two’s feet rolled rather than fell, muffling the sound of his steps. He wondered where he might have learnt this skill. It wasn’t a product of whatever process they had been through that had bred it into them, either that or he was the only one who subconsciously fell into that pattern of stepping. However, it felt like he had always walked like this, or for as long back as his memory might have extended if he still had one. His silent foot-falls were more strenuous than he imagined walking ‘normally’ would have been, but Two-Seven-Two decided to let his body move in whatever way it felt most comfortable, and so his steps remained ethereal.

The four of them made to walk into the large hallway which led out of the chamber, numerous heavy treads sounded in the distance. Several can-shaped projectiles blinking yet more red lights were thrown down the corridor, landing at the group’s feet and violently spewing gas. Two-Seven-Two’s hand instinctively covered his mouth and he anticipating a painful eye-watering. However, that didn’t happen as he tentatively removed his hand from his mouth, he found that whatever process he had been through rendered him immune to this gas. The only negative effect was that they could no longer see down the corridor.

From the other side of the smokescreen a command to fire preceded several darts which struck Two-Seven-Two’s flesh. He watched as on struck his chest and emptied it’s payload into his bloodstream, but despite this and several doing exactly the same, Two-Seven-Two found himself unaffected by whatever compound was inside the needles. Unperturbed by either of the methods used so far, Two-Seven-Two vanished into the smog to confront his attackers.

His attackers had a similar idea, Two-Seven-Two being immediately greeted by several black-armoured men swinging crackling batons like mad men. The first swing Two-Seven-Two caught on its descent, his powerful arm easily holding back the man trying to hit him. Another flanked him and struck his left shoulder with his club. Two-Seven-Two grunted, his throat instinctively muffling the shout of pain. Two-Seven-Two released the first man and instinctively spun, his arm fully extended and hand held flat. The narrow side of his hand struck the man’s throat and the force crushed his windpipe. The man dropped to the floor, but already others were closing in to try and subdue him.

One made another swing at him and Two-Seven-Two blocked the strike with his forearm. He stepped inside the man’s guard and lashed out with a similar chop to his throat, causing his attacker to drop his baton and clutch his throat, a quiet gurgling escaping from his lips as he fell to the floor. Another electro-club struck his side and Two-Seven-Two felt his muscles seize and spasm. He forced himself through the pain and spasms to deliver an upwards strike with his palm that broke the man’s jaw and likely dislodged several teeth. He never had a chance to recover from this as Two-Seven-Two stepped into his personal space and broke his neck with a violent twist, letting the limp corpse fall to the floor. There had been no explanation or cause for attack. These men had simply attacked them and now they were his enemies. Two-Seven-Two did not know where he had learnt his fighting style or why, like his footsteps, each strike made these men fall silently to the ground, but he trusted his instincts and so kept going with his silencing strikes.

Two men rushed him, presumably hoping to overwhelm him by outnumbering him. Two-Seven-Two dropped his stance low and met them head on. Both swung for him in frantic downward clubbing motions. Both of their blows connected with his pectoral muscles, but Two-Seven-Two had not tried to avoid them. Painful as their strikes were, they could not stop him. Pushing through the protests of his body, Two-Seven-Two rose up and lifted both men off their feet by their throat before slamming the back down onto the metal floor. He released the one in his right hand for an instant to deliver a punishing strike into the face of the one in his left hand. Two-Seven-Two had merely intended for his blow to knock him out cold, but the force of his punch drove through the man’s black armour and crumpled the man’s face inwards, blood leaking through the hairline fractures in his helmet.

One more came after him hoping to take advantage of Two-Seven-Two’s kneeling position. Instead, Two-Seven-Two grabbed the shaft of the baton and pulled it with enough force to prize it from the man’s grip and pull him to ground. As he fell, Two-Seven-Two turned the under-sized baton over in his hand before bringing it down in a crushing strike on the man’s head. The force of the blow shattered the man’s skull and stained the floor in a mixture of blood, brain matter and bone and armour shards. The man he had released was scrabbling to his feet. Two-Seven-Two dropped the baton in his hand and pounced on him, his powerful hand wrapping dangerously round the man’s throat. He squeezed and the man struggled to breathe, his arms alternating between trying to prize Two-Seven-Two’s hands off of his throat and trying to beat him off.

Two-Seven-Two ignored these feeble attempts as he threatened to slowly crush the life out of the man. “Who sent you? What are your orders?” Two-Seven-Two growled menacingly. The man continued to fight for breath and Two-Seven-Two loosened his hands slightly and the man desperately wheezed shallow breaths in and out as his struggles for complete release continued. “Answer my questions and I’ll let you live. Now…” Two-Seven-Two reapplied the full pressure and the man’s scrabbles for breath became more frantic. “…let’s start with who sent you and what your orders are.” Two-Seven-Two continued this process of letting the man almost pass out, letting him snatch a few frantic breaths before reapplying the lethal pressure to the man’s throat. One way or another, he would have his answers…

OCC: I appreciate how successful my ad hoc interrogation is will be dependent on whether everyone else incapacitates/kills their foes and your discretion unxpekted, but if anything comes of it can we PM and discuss what Two-Seven-Two will ask, since he has more questions than just who sent them and what the soldier’s orders were.

My contribution to the Renegades saga. Check it out

My growing IIIrd legion stuff:

17th Millenial (Homebrew Fluff) - "Children of the Emperor, death to his foes!" (Project Log)

Also my 30k tacticas, for those of you interested:

Crusade Army List tactica - Individual Legion tactica

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post #28 of 54 (permalink) Old 02-12-14, 01:37 AM
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He felt like a vulture, picking his way across the carcasses. Some were torn open, blood, oil and hydraulic fluids leaking from the red-robed corpses in a stinking, acrid pool. Those clad in white - One-Two-Eight had deducted that they were menials, lowly servants - All had similar, harrowing faces, as though they had died painfully. These were the most useless - They carried nothing, save surgical gloves and masks, and so One-Two-Eight quickly stopped searching these, setting his attentions firmly on the machine-men. There were strange symbols etched upon their metal-skin, cog-skulls and lightning bolts and tools. One-Two-Eight traced them with his fingertips, hoping to incite some kind of memory, a flashback, anything. Nothing came.

He cut his finger on a scalpel, laughably childlike in his grip, and smirked as the blood clotted around the thin, deep laceration. He picked at it, frowning, and found that it had sealed into a rough, callous-like scab. This one, with faded optical implants and a sewn-on rebreather, carried an abundance of medical equipment - Needles and thermometers, calipers and dilators, several scalpels of varying sizes and sharpness. He tossed them away, scattering them across the grated floor, and sighed. None of them were of any use - Aye, the scalpels were sharp, but they were too small in his massive, soft-skinned paws. He was more likely to cut himself than any attacker. His anger was rising, a throbbing inside of his chest, warming his body. Adrenaline was pumping through him, and he had no idea why. His heart hurt, his head hurt, his tongue, his teeth, his fingers - Everything was still aflame, as if dipped in promethium, and One-Two-Eight was unsure how much longer he could last it.

The machine-man's arm was a giant clamp, decorated with yellow chevrons. It was attached to his elbow with wires, screws and - One-Two-Eight had no doubt - A series of false-muscles, ligaments and reinforced bone, beneath the synthetic flesh. One-Two-Eight grinned, tearing the wires and pipes with his fingers, so that oil spurted over his hands. He twisted the screws and bolts, until the arm began to flop, and then stood, gripping the clamp with both of his hands - Pressing his foot into the dead man's - If it was a man - Armpit. He yanked, four times, before the arm pulled free with a slurp. He gave it a swing, splitting the air. It was completely improvised, but it would do. One-Two-Eight turned to the others, grinned at their expressions, and realised something - These lot were, essentially, beneath him. He was the only one with any sort of weapon, and he suspected that they weren't going to get in his way.

The group of men left, Two-Seven-Two and One-Two-Eight leading the way, the former stopping to check a door as they went.

'Gnn,' One-Two-Eight grunted, when Two-Seven-Two rejoined him. Were they friends, now? No, of course not - Allies, perhaps. A pair of men thrown into a strange, and rather, unfortunate survival and both desiring to survive. They were trudging along a large, enormous, hallway. 'I suppose so. Almost feels like we are being funneled, driven-'

Thudding. Footsteps. Lots of them, too. Heading towards the four of them, at a quick pace.

Something caught the red lights, revolving through the air towards them, small and can-shaped. Only, there wasn't one object - There was a dozen or so. They bounced off of the metal floor, the top section lifting, and unleashing a torrent of gas. One-Two-Eight narrowed his eyes, lifting his robes around his mouth and nose with one hand, wielding his claw-thing with the other. The walls were gone, Two-Seven-Two and the others, were gone. Smoke, or gas, covered everything. One-Two-Eight was utterly alone, but the cloying gas was no longer harming his senses, making him drowsy. He lowered his makeshift mask, looked around, and shook his head.

'Fire!' Barked a voice, and small, metallic objects whirled towards One-Two-Eight. Some missed, but other struck home, piercing his flesh with long, proboscis-like needs. Liquid was injected to him, and he expected himself to collapse, to struck the ground and ruin his face. But nothing happened, he remained standing, unfazed, staring at the needles in his skin. He tore them out, hastily - Not wanting to experience some kind of side-effect, and braced for more impacts.

Like fug was he going to die here, cowering in the smog.

One-Two-Eight pushed onwards, happy to see that the others were doing the same, and saw their attackers. There were two dozen of them, garbed in black - Black boots, black body-gloves, black gauntlets. Their faces were hidden beneath all-enclosing helms, with mirrored visors that made them look like bugs. What was worse, One-Two-Eight decided, was the fact that they were all sprinting forwards - Some discarding dart-guns, but all had drawn long, electrified rods.

The first that reached One-Two-Eight struck him in the thigh, and he felt his muscles tremble and seize, much to his chagrin. One-Two-Eight's other foot shot out, landing on the attacker's instep with a tremendous crunch. The man screamed, muffled by his helm, and fell over. The second man made a sloppy swing at One-Two-Eight, who sidestepped with remarkable - Preternatural- Speed, and gripped the man's weapon-arm. He yanked it back, bone erupting from flesh, and stole the stun-rod. A savage kick sent him stumbling away, knee snapped.

One-Two-Eight tossed the clamp-arm, gripped the stun-rod with both hands, and roared. The sound echoed above the din of grunts, screams and hisses, and it bought One-Two-Eight enough time. The third attacker stopped, fear digging its claws into his heart, and hesitated. One-Two-Eight swung the stun-rod, catching the man's helmet with immense, bloodthirsty force. His head exploded. Bone, brain and blood struck One-Two-Eight's face, a warm, sticky patina. He grinned through it, teeth showing white against his gory features, and turned.

He wasn't going to stay - To fight the other three rushing towards him. His allies, his companions, would provide enough of a distraction for One-Two-Eight to escape.

He ran, as fast as his huge legs could take him, still clutching fervently at the stun-rod.

Nyctophobia- Fear of the Dark Angel.

"No one ever spoke about of those two absent brothers. Their separate tragedies had seemed like aberrations. Had they, in fact, been warnings that no one had heeded?"

'Killing a man is like fucking, boy, only instead of giving life you take it. You experience the ecstasy of penetration as your warhead enters the enemy's belly and the shaft follows. You see the whites of his eyes roll inside the sockets of his helmet. You feel his knees give way beneath him and the weight of his faltering flesh draw down the point of your spear. Are you picturing this?'
'Yes, lord.'
'Is your dick hard yet?'
'No, lord.'
''What? You've got your spear in a man's guts and your dog isn't stiff? What are you, a woman?'
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I apologize for lagging behind, I'm caught up now.

“Hah. I don’t think they like us, brother.” Thirteen clapped a hand on forty-eight’s shoulder before he rejoined the scavenging for weapons. Another menial corpse thrown aside, thirteen cursed under his breath. How hard was it come by another massive machine limb? He considered the opening statements from his other companions. He couldn’t say he wouldn’t rather be stuck here with anyone else. Both one-twenty-eight and two-seventy-two’s arrogant sense of superiority bothered him more than he liked. Number forty-eight hadn’t spoken much himself. Perhaps he should have followed his own example, if only to escape the calculating glare of the others. Who would have thought speaking one’s mind would instantly brand a man an idiot?

The triple digit giants carried on about the situation, thirteen wouldn’t have admitted anything aloud, but their mutual decision to be gone from this place couldn’t have felt more right. The moment they moved for the open doorway, he was following them from a distance. He didn’t trust much of anything in reach of himself, not even the little machine handing him a heavy robe at the last possible moment. An image of thirteen picking up the little machine and hurling it into two seventy two’s spinal cord came to mind. He shook the image out of his brain.

Thirteen gave forty-eight a sidelong glance, pointing his head in two seventy two’s direction. “Could he look more ridiculous?” He whispered imperceptibly, silently chuckling at the giant’s stealthy dance through the red halls. “Does this look like the jungle to you? At least he-“He looked to one twenty eight. “Can actually kill something and look serious about it.”

Shouts interrupted his train of thought, followed by a storm of heavy footfalls heading in the direction of chamber pods. Thirteen’s hands immediately went to his invisible weapon strapped to his waist. When he didn’t feel anything, he fell backwards with a swift roll the moment the gas canisters fell all around them. He tucked his head beneath the slab of his arm, feeling the thick spray enter his eyes and nose. Kneeling in the fog for a moment longer, thirteen noticed he didn’t feel much of anything. He glanced up, but everyone had disappeared. The echoes of battle carried through the wailing sirens and red lights.

Thirteen didn’t consider turning tail and running. He simply didn’t feel like backing down to these scum, especially while others grabbed all the glory for themselves. Half blinded by gas, he rushed towards the sounds of fighting and was nearly enveloped by three soldiers in black coming from different directions. The first caught him by surprise, his stun baton bruising his left bicep and causing erratic spasms and contractions. Thirteen spun away from his follow up strike, thrusting his other fist beneath the belt of another trying to take out his legs. He caught the feeble man by his neck guard before he crumpled like a withered skeleton, wielding him like a shield against an onslaught of clubbing blows from the remaining two.

Thirteen bellowed in uncontrolled laughter, realizing the stupidity of the situation. He threw the convulsing human at the feet of his foes, the crunch of the impact surprisingly satisfying to his sudden lust for battle. The baton wielding shadows charged on, brimming with the promise of unbridled violence. Several strikes crashed into his lower ribcage, pushing him back several steps. Mustering their courage, both whelps pushed further into his guard. Thirteen leaned away from an attack aimed for the left side of his chest. His left arm twisted, catching the baton in the man’s own feeble grip. His foe collapsed with a backhanded strike across the temple, blood shooting from his nostrils, staining his robes. The corpse lies still and Thirteen’s vice-grip is already jerking the other’s faceguard around like a ragdoll. The struggle is brief, ending with the little creature’s head cracked open on his knee.

A dozen more angry shouts penetrate the weakening gas screen. How many had they killed already? Ten? Thirteen? A hundred more could be waiting to take their turn on the relentless giants and put their skills to the test. It wouldn’t be wise to get tangled up here any longer.

“We should fall back! Call out if you can hear me!”

“Evil is relative…You can’t hang a sign on it. You can’t touch it or taste it or cut it with a sword. Evil depends on where you are standing, pointing your indicting finger.”
-Glen Cook, The Black Company


Tales of Heroism and Bravery, in the 41st Millennium and the Old World. Perhaps some Realm Gate Wars in the future .

Gods' Hall (Completed)
https://www.heresy-online.net/forums/...d.php?t=161618

The New Word (Completed)
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Impossible though it seemed, the only conclusion the man could draw was that he had been the one to kill the five men strewn across the room. He knew that their deaths ought to have troubled him – normal men blanched at such carnage – but there was something comforting in the charnel surrounding him. It was familiar, it was where he belonged.

The clotted rents across his side twinged with slight pain as he ran his taloned fingertips over them, examining a pellet of shrapnel in idle interest as he cast it to the floor.The torn rag-dolls of manflesh and their pathetic weapons elicited a bubbling ripple of laughter from the man. He bore them no ill will – well no more than he felt for anyone else – but his own survival superseded their right to exist.

He hummed to himself, mumbling the remnants of a song he could only grasp at the edges of as he traced his bare fingertips across the walls, caressing the bullet holes bored into the wall. He enjoyed their sharp edges and oblong presence – sniffing in the perfume of cordite in the air. Red and white klaxon blared in harmonious discord, welcoming him back to the chaos from whence he came.

The passage yawed, disgorging into a large room. Long tables finished with clean white ceramic tops stood in disarray, overturned food trays and shattered crockery covering the floor like caltrops. The broken glass was as nothing to the man's giant feet, he feet an idle sense of confusion as he wandered though the debris. The chairs and benches are too small – elfin in comparison to his own bulk.

He pulled a knife from the thick block of blades in the commissary’s scullery, disgusted at it's proportions. He tossed the cleaver aside, growling. “Why even bother!”

There was nothing here for him. He stuck a finger in the pot of stew – retching at it's flavor. Whatever had been in the pot best have been intended as some sort of punishment rather than actual sustenance. His taste buds were overwhelmed with more sensations than he knew how to process, a cascading and confusing mess of new information.

Sticking out his tongue as he squinted his fleshy eye, the man scraped the morsels of food from his mouth with a talon before spitting upon the floor. It was time to move on.

Exiting from the commissary the man found himself in a junction of some sort, another grey and featureless example of military architecture. Popping his head around the door jamb the man used his artificial eye, catching the outline of two massive figures through he flashing klaxon and flickering lights.

He hid, crouching in the blind spot where the doors swung inward.Until he had a better sense of what was going on in this madhouse he would have to assume that everyone was a potential hostile. They were not moving with any sense of deliberation in their movements, purpose in every stride. These men belonged here, they knew what purpose they served.

Not even daring to breathe he flattened himself against the shadows, knowing he had only seconds. Not even daring to breathe, he stood, ready to pounce. The cloaked figures whisked past him, urgent in purpose. He leapt upon the nearest of the giants, grabbing him by the larynx as he hooked his foot within the crook of the man's knee to drive him to the floor. The giant shouted in surprise as he toppled.

His cloaked compatriot tore the man from his victim, taking an elbow to the nose for his troubles. The second cloaked man growled in irritation, ducking a swipe of agumentic talons. Arms, snake like in their dexterity, brushed aside his swipe leaving him open for a hard high-kick to the solar plexus. He hit the wall hard, woofing in surprise as the wind was knocked out of his lungs.

The man he'd incapacitated previously leapt to his feet, rolling back upon his shoulders before springing up with preternatural ease. In a swirling mess of black cloak the two men drove him to the floor, stabbing a spike into his spine – paralyzing the man even as he thrashed in fury.”

The tallest of the pair tilted his head, his booming voice addressing the blank air before him, “"Diatre, we have 111. Do you need assistance with the others?... Understood."

The two cloaked men hefted the man across their shoulders, sharing her weight between them. The deep voiced man spoke as they dragged him along the corridor, seemingly nonplussed by his attempt to murder them both. “We are your allies. We will explain what is going on once everything is back in order.”

The man seethed with anger at his helplessness – his impotence. Only seconds ago he'd fancied himself a god, and how he could not even kill two unarmed men. Pathetic – what kind of man was he if he couldn't even protect himself from two men in robes.

But he was alive – he survived. That could only mean one thing. These men needed him for something. They needed him

“Then you are not good men,” The man replied, the sweet scent of five men's blood and cordite still upon his nostrils, “Good men do not befriend monsters.”

Last edited by Todeswind; 02-20-14 at 06:14 PM.
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