One-Two-Eight was laying back, arms folded across his chest, eyes clenched shut, when the alarms began to blare. He sniffed, shaking his helmeted head, and shuffled awkwardly into a crouching position.
'What the fug is that?' He asked, to no-one in particular, and didn't receive any sort of answer. 'Well fug you all, too,' He added, after a brief silence, quieter and harsher.
One of the Armsmen, resembling a big, black beetle in his armour and cloak, stood up and slid open the access hatch. Snow, soft and flurrying, and sharp, cold shards of ice, filled the interior of the transport. One-Two-Eight stepped forwards, leaned out of the hatchway and looked downwards. From horizon to horizon, the world was blanketed in snow, everything glowing faintly in the moonlight. Beneath, brief, flickering impressions of figures - Men and vehicles, clad in bronze and scarlet - Or that's what One-Two-Eight believed - Were milling about a makeshift campsite. Slowly, tediously, the flier landed, settling softly onto a rough, untended ring of lights.
One-Two-Eight was amongst the first out, striding out of the vehicle with strong, purposeful steps. He crouched, taking a handful of snow in his gloved palm, and crushed it. Diabrttr, Two-Seven-Two and One-Two-Eight's watcher, led them across the landing pad. A group of Skitarii, the Mechanicus foot-soldiers, met them at the pad's boundaries. Diabrttr and Two-Seven-Two saluted, as did the Skitarii, though One-Two-Eight did not. He grinned wolfishly, teeth flashing as white as the snow around them, and grunted. The Mechanicus had saved him, back at the Epsilon Facility, but they were not his superiors - Indeed, in the weeks of training, One-Two-Eight had come to understand that the Mechanicus and the Imperium of Man had a symbiotic relationship, two vastly different groups, both in creed and function, of humanity that had banded together to ensure their survival.
As the flesh-spare Mechanicus spoke, Two-Seven-Two pressed close, and whispered, 'No defences and no long range support. Something is very wrong about this.'
One-Two-Eight pursed his lips. 'Spooky,' He hissed, feigning fear and interest. 'If you come any closer, friend, you'll be kissing me.'
He winked, shuffled back, and looked around. The Armsmen and Saviors had broken down into groups of three, one Armsman and two of the Saviors in each, and for a moment One-Two-Eight appreciated being thrown in with Two-Seven-Two.
He shuddered. 'Pull yourself together,' He said, to himself. 'You're becoming nice.'
One-Two-Eight absorbed the information that was needed, though his face remained slack, bored and cold. So, so cold.
'The Tribune is female, my lord,' The informative Skitarii said, and One-Two-Eight's interests suddenly ignited, tenfold. He stepped back into the ring, letting his bolter hang by its straps, and rubbed the back of his hand over his nose, sniffling.
'Check in with Defevirian, while I inform the others.' Diabrttr told them, and One-Two-Eight groaned.
One-Two-Eight didn't like Defevirian, not one bit. He was fine, the phantom aches in his body was gone, his wounds had healed. He didn't need Defevirian.
So, when he walked off, he veered away and gripped one of the Skitarii by his wrist, not roughly but rather tenderly.
'So, Mister Shiny, where can I find this Tribune of yours? Or am I going to have to saunter into the enemy camp without a good luck kiss?'
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?'
'Is your dick hard yet?'
''What? You've got your spear in a man's guts and your dog isn't stiff? What are you, a woman?'