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8,544 Posts
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Welcome to the year's first

For those of you that are unfamiliar with HOES, 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. Each and every member of Heresy Online is more than welcome to compete, whether your entry is your first post or your thousandth. We welcome everyone to join the family of the Fan Fiction Forum.

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, totalled 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 and be awarded the Lexicanum's Crest award for Fiction excellence!


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.

Word Count

The official word count for this 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 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). Keep in mind, comments are more than welcome! If you catch grammar or spelling errors, the writers are all more than free to edit their piece up until the close of the competition, and that final work will be the one considered for voting. Sharing your thoughts with the writers as they come up with their works is a great way to help us, as a FanFiction community, grow as a whole.

The deadline for entries is Midnight GMT, 31 January 2015
. Remember, getting your story submitted on 22nd will be just as considered by others as one submitted on 11th! Take as much time as you need to work on your piece! Any entries submitted past the deadline will not be considered in the competition, regardless of whether the voting thread is posted or not.

Additional Incentive
If simply being victorious over your comrades is not enough to possess you to write a story, there will be rep rewards granted to those that participate in the HOES Challenge.

Participation - 1 reputation points, everyone will receive this
3rd place - 2 reputation points
2nd place - 3 reputation points
1st place - 4 reputation points and Lexicanum's Crest

If you have any questions, feel free to ask in this thread.

Without further nonsense from me, let the writing begin!


623 Posts
The Splintered House

Word Count: 1096​

The ruins of House Felendial was a maze of half collapsed wraithbone, charred and molten from an unpredicted orbital strike. The tattered remnants that remained standing glittered in Buriel’s ethereal light, reflecting on the silver and porcelain surfaces that once comprised a palace worthy of sagas. Lriean Tarithinon observed the dilapidated estate from the shadows of the dense forest, just beyond the perimeter wall, which had been crushed in dozens of places. His limbs involuntarily twitched, his teeth imperceptibly chattering as he felt the temperature plummet with the vanishing of the sun.

Lriean checked his outfit of ebony and crimson imperial fatigues, made subtle adjustments, and checked his ammunition and las pistol for the umpteenth time. He managed to smile with some enthusiasm and elbowed the tall Amazonian eldar beside him. He heard an impatient grunt, a small curse, before a shadowy figure leaned into the light of the moon.

Howling Banshee Taryi was nearly invisible in the dense foliage of the forest, but Lriean caught a glimpse of her polished beige armor, her emerald tabard, her sharp and angular features, and long, curly auburn hair. She lowered her primitive set of binoculars and sighed quietly, her large jade eyes still absorbing every facet of the fallen house in calculating assessment.

Taryi spared Lriean a single glance, then went back to her spying. “Mae informed us that there are hundreds of ruins like these on Durin’s surface. We are certain that this is the ruins of House Felendial?”

Lriean allowed himself a quiet chuckle. “There can only be so many destroyed sights this grand so far from a burgeoning city. Plus, the presence of these…” There was a distinct warbling noise and the sounds of something flaring to life. A small obsidian ship painted with crimson accents hurtled itself into the sky from the ruined House Felendial. Lriean pointed toward it wide eyes. “Imperials. No doubt that ship left a number of them behind in this sacred place.”

Now it was Taryi’s turn to chuckle with an unpleasant snarl. “”Then let us be rid of these vermin, eh, Lriean?”

“Indeed.” Lriean pressed two fingers onto his comm.—link. “Qunalan, the Alpha Wolves are ready to hunt. Guide us in.”

A crystal clear voice of a brooding, baritone nature responded. “Then let us proceed. There are a dozen gaps in the perimeter fortifications on your side, but be warned, the Imperials are guarding them with automated Servitors and turrets. It’s best to climb over the intact sections, I do not spot anything keeping an eye on them.”

“Lriean,” Taryi darted from the shadows and into the moonlight, but still managed to appear as an apparition as she glided toward the nearest standing portion of the wall, some mere meters away. “Let us attack.”

Lriean swiftly rushed after his companion, whom was already deploying a grappling drone to the highest peak of the wall. The insect like A.I. quickly floated upward toward the battlements, a lengthy rope attached into its feed and proceeded to attach itself to the edge. Taryi gave a good pull of the rope and then set about climbing. Lriean followed her up, his eyes locked upon the polearm slung over Taryi’s shoulder. The power weapon possessed a wicked long blade on one end that pointed ever downward as they ascended the wall. He blocked out images of the Executioner coming loose and skewering him.

“Come on.” Taryi vanished over the lip of the wall and reappeared a moment later, her hand extended to grip Lriean by the wrist. With a powerful tug that belied her frame, she pulled Lriean onto the battlements with one arm.

Qunalan’s voice followed their progress. “There are three sentries and one automated turret below you some ways to the right. Eliminate them.”

Lriean pulled an alien projectile from his grenade belt. “I’ve got something just for the occasion. It’s a Tau E.M.P. Taryi, when I throw this grenade, wait until it goes off and then strike.”

Taryi nodded.

Lriean looked out from the wall’s edge and certainly enough, three stagnant servitors surrounded an autocannon turret, staring through a breach in the wall. He quickly pressed a trigger on the grenade, heard an affirming sound, and threw the grenade into the midst of the servitors. The resultant explosion enveloped his victims in a brilliant cyan light. The turret wound down and the servitors convulsed with random machine code speech.

Taryi took the rope from the grappling drone and slid down the wall toward her enemies. She glided across the wall with her feet, drew her polearm and activated the power field, and then leapt into her enemies. The Executioner flashed before her feet hit the garden floor. The head of a servitor clattered to the ground. Another human machine threw a sporadic pincer limb in her direction. Taryi ducked beneath the blow and executed an arced swing that tore through the belly of her attacker and sheared both upper limbs from the third foe. The servitor with the belly wound exploded with crackling flames and the last remaining simply returned into a dormant state with no weapons to use.

Lriean slipped down the wall to join his companion, then the pair were stalking the ruined paths through House Felendial. They occasionally encountered the unsuspecting Imperial Guard patrol or more servitors. Qunalan made distractions with his reaper launcher, while Lriean sniped away with a silenced las-pistol, and Taryi leapt into the backs of her foes with the executioner.

“Come on,” Lriean pressed as they neared the entrance into the Felendial Estate. “The artifact is near!”

An abrupt voice stopped them in their tracks. “And what are we searching for, I wonder?” The man behind them was dressed in the armor of an Inquisitor, but an Inquisitor he seemed anything but. An apprentice then. “Are you looking for this?” The man held up a devilish looking box, marked in commorrite runes to warn anyone idiotic enough to open it. “In this lies the souls of three greater demons. Amazing what you eldar believe you can get away with studying.” The Acolyte whistled. An escort of four dozen guardsmen emerged from their hiding places. “Arrest them. Take them to the Inquisitor’s stronghold. No doubt he will have questions for these… artifact liberators… though thieves is a stronger and more accurate term.”

Lriean fumed, forced onto his knees. “If you think you can use them for your own gain, know that you are too primitive and weak, mon-keigh.”

“Emperor shield us from the unholy, both demonic and alien. Take them away!”

781 Posts
Underhive Thieves

Word Count: 999

“Ok, stop me if you've heard this one. A human, a ratling and an ogryn walk into a vault with almost zero information. They are never seen again.”

“That's not funny.”

“Then why are we doing it!?” the ratling Samual asked exasperated, his head darting around nervously.

“Will you just trust me?” his human partner Riley replied, shooting him his irritatingly charming smile that had been painstakingly perfected over the last ten years.

“Why? Because that's always worked out so well for me before?”

“Well Rok trusts me, don't ya big guy.”

The third member of the party, the huge ogryn clad in poorly stitched together rags grunted in a manner Riley had always taken to be approval.

“See.” Riley added smugly.

“Well of course the ogryn does, he's an idiot!”

Rok turned, reached back and gripped one huge hand around the back of Samual's shirt, hoisting him effortlessly from the ground.

“Towards whom I have only the utmost of respect.” Samual added hurriedly. This satisfied Rok enough to return him to the ground.

“Knock it off, we're here.” Riley said.

Down in the underhive's of Rysis II one would pass many an unmarked door with no clue as to what lay behind them and if one was smart, they wouldn't ask either. This was one such door, tucked away at the bottom of a dirty narrow alleyway, not far from the main market square.

“This is it?” Samual asked disbelievingly.

“This is it.” Riley confirmed.

“Doesn't look like much.”

“That's the idea.” Riley said and started feeling what appeared to be bare rockcrete wall. “A-ha.” he said a moment later as his thumb depressed what looked like a loose stone which in turn revealed a small round scanner. “Keep watch.” Riley said, gesturing back towards the market. The other two looked away as the human removed a small moist package and held it up towards the scanner, then quickly tucked it away.

“What was that?” Samual asked.

“What was what?”

“That. In your pocket. Was that an eyeball?”


Samual pulled at his hair to keep from screaming. “What the Throne are we doing Riley? No, that's it I'm out.” he said, throwing his hands into the air and walking away.

“No, Sam, I need you.” Riley hissed.

“What for?”

“You'll see, come on.”

Rok pushed open the heavy metal door and led them into a long bare chamber. It was dark aside from the light of a half dozen dull glow globes spaced evenly down each side of the chamber. The floor was covered in large hexagonal tiles. Riley stopped just through the door and Samual made to step past him.

“Stop.” Riley said, placing a firm hand down on the ratling's shoulder.

“What is it?”

“Pressure plates.” Riley said, gesturing to the tiles.

“Oh right, let me guess. They're rigged for human weight and I won't set them off. Is that it?”

“No, they're very sensitive. It's just that Rok can throw you further than me.”

“What? Riley you son-of-a-aaa!?”

Before he could finish his cursing Samual had been hefted up by two three trunk arms and thrown head first down the length of the chamber, impacting with a loud dull thud as his shoulder hit the wall at the other end. The ratling groaned as he got to his feet and reached for the stocky autopistol at his hip.

“Whoa, don't be hasty short stuff.” Riley called out after him. “I know where the shut down is. If you shoot me you'll be stuck over there.”

He didn't hear a response but the ratling took his hand off the gun and allowed himself to be directed to a hidden switch. A faint electrical buzz that none of them had previously registered, stopped and the rest of the party crossed the first chamber and passed into the next. As they entered, brighter glow globes activated and bathed the room in a warm orange light. It was the same width as the previous room but much shorter. All around the edges were trinkets and heirlooms of obvious value, but one object dominated the room. In the centre of the rear wall atop a waist high marble plinth was a small black box with complex looking lock. As Riley approached the plinth, Samual and Rok examined the assorted treasures. The ratling picked up a golden pocket watch, inspecting in admiringly. Then he noticed the seal embossed on the back.

“Who did you say we were stealing from?” he asked.

“Um, Romero, someone...” Riley said dismissively.

“Romero? As in Romero Eiman? Of House Eiman? As in the nobles that run half of Rysis II, House Eiman?”

“Oh so you've heard of them?”

“That's it, we're done here.” Samual declared, heading towards the plinth. “If this is what you're after then let's go.”

“No wait I need to-” Riley said desperately, but it was too late. Samual had lifted the box. “Deactivate the sensor.”

The lights changed from orange to red and unseen panels on each side of the plinth opened up. A pair of heavy gun servitors emerging.

“Oh Throne.” Samual cursed.

“You are trespassing on House Eiman property. The Adeptus Arbites have been contacted. Remain still until they arrive.” The Servitors announced in unison.

“Um, no. Run!” Riley yelled, drawing a smoke grenade from the inside of his jacket and throwing it to the ground. In a second the room was filled with thick grey smoke. The trio fled, chased by streams of heavy stubber fire. Leading the way, Rok shouldered through the first door, almost taking it off it's hinges and the trio were clear. Moments later and they were just three more faces in the crowd of the markets.

Another day in the life of an underhive thief.
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