Cato sat on the operating table, watching carefully as the Apothecary looked through his tests. Even as the ship came out of the Warp, protocol had to be observed. Cato could not be out training and fighting with his brothers, even after two months awake - it was a waste of resources. Cato felt himself becoming tense, so he closed his eyes and let his mind wander to calm himself.
Flashes of the duel that put him in suspended animation sprung, unbidden, in his thoughts. The daemon of the Blood God had singled him out, probably expecting a quick kill before moving on to his next victim. Cato remembered every stroke, every parry, every miss and every wound he sustained. The fight drew on longer, and longer, but still he persevered. Deeply enwrapped in his own memories now, Cato watched himself finally summon all his strength and crush the Herald with his psychic might, only allowing himself to collapse to the floor once the foul creature uttered its dying scream. Darkness clouded his vision as the tight hallways of the mining vessel faded from view, reinforcements finally making it aboard as an apothecary rushed to help Cato into his coma... and a figure, armoured head to foot in black, turned and walked away, just out of the corner of his eye...
"...and your Larraman count is satisfactory. I declare you fit for combat.”
Cato started, realising the Apothecary was speaking to him. He snapped open his eyes, looking up at the venerable healer. Cato stood, his mountainous features creasing into a smile.
"My thanks, brother. It will be good to - "
Cato was cut off by the warning klaxons. A frown crossed his face, while Apothecary Michael engaged in a brief vox transfer.
“You are report to the armoury. Your weapons and armour have been prepared in advance for you. Once you have collected them you are to report to Brotherhood Champion Jairus in the teleportation array.” Cato turned and his smile grew, flexing his muscles as he headed for the door. “No rest for the weary, eh Cato?”
Cato paused, turning back to the room that had been his home... no, his tomb, for the last nine weeks.
"Apothecary Michael, how can I rest when the Emperor's enemies do not?"
Cato ran down the hallway to the armoury, pushing past crew members who were making their way to battle-stations. The Grey Knights had already been mobilised, so Cato would need to hurry. An Mechanicum orderly stood by the armour racks, and there it was - his armour. The battle-scars had all been repaired and reinforced, the smooth surface spotless and polished with care. The golden eagle across the chestplate glistened, his black right shoulder-pad as forlorn as ever. Cato snapped out of his reverie, and motioned to the orderly.
"Quickly, now," he commanded, moving forward as the red-hooded man began armouring him. He moved with practiced ease as Cato transformed into a Knight once again, clad in the cold grey of the 666th Chapter. As the powerpack was connected the armour's systems came online. Cato reached and attached his helmet after the orderly had retreated to a respectful distance - after all, this choice was one left to each warrior. Finally, Cato turned to his weapons, mag-locking his grenade-belt and falchion sheathes to his waist, locking on his storm bolter to his left arm, before bringing his gauntleted hands down to the Nemesis Force Falchions, feeling their hilt before drawing them from their sheathes, whipping them around to feel their familiar weight once again. The armourers had removed the shackles from their hilts, but there was no time for that now. Cato turned and strode from the armoury: a Grey Knight once more.
Cato reached the teleportation bay just as bright light suffused it, the flash sending out an audible crack as a squad of Grey Knights was sent into the fray. Cato's blades were sheathed, but he itched to join battle with his foes. Cato bowed his head and made the sign of the Aquila before Jairus. He barely had time to hear that his old squad, or whatever was left of it, had already departed before a squad of Grey Knights entered. Jairus introduced them as his new brothers - Squad Dothrac, headed by Justicar Galahad.
Cato bowed his head and again made the sign of the Aquila before his new squadmates. He felt outwards gently with his mind, allowing himself to be absorbed into the squad's psychic communion. Feeling it prudent let the squad communicate to him with telepathy first, however, Cato introduced himself out loud.
"Greetings, brothers. I am Cato Marquand, declared fit for combat not minutes ago. I've spent the last eight months imprisoned by the good brother Michael in the Apothecarium," Cato chuckled, odd-sounding through his helmet's speakers, but endearing nonetheless. "I shouldn't joke, he has our best interests at heart, but I am eager to join battle after so long." Cato turned to Justicar Galahad.
"Brother Justicar, my psychic strengths are telekine, and my preferred weaponry a pair of falchions - I am at your disposal, I will fit into your squad's combat strategy in whichever way you deem best."
Cato felt a telepathic communication and welcomed it, his psychic senses matching body with voice - Talerion, his armour and halberd decorated with purity seals, and, as he indicated, purely grey. Now that his brothers had spoken telepathically first, Cato decided to return the courtesy, sending his thoughts to the squad.
+Well met, brother Talerion. Forgive me, I mean no offence with my black shoulder-pad. It reminds me of something of my past, very strongly, yet I still can't puzzle out why. Rest assured, I am a Grey Knight and will remain one until I die, no matter what heraldry I bear.+ Cato accompanied the message with a respectful nod in Talerion's direction, hoping this wouldn't be of too much concern.
(OOC: I'll post my combat after others have had a chance to say hello so I can reply!)
Give a man a match, and he's warm for a day.
Set a man on fire, and he's warm for the rest of his life!