‘Shas’O, we have multiple intruder alerts, repeat, the Io’Tar has been boarded.’
‘Contain and destroy them, Shas’el.’
The comms link terminated abruptly, replacing the squall of background static with the ferocious din of battle.
O’Vash strode down the shuttle’s ramp and ducked back into the chamber. Weapons fire strobed through the lightless corridors of AX-118, the air filled with small arms ricochets and the occasion crump of grenades against the drifting hulks bulkheads, all adding to the cacophony of war that was fast becoming a vision of hell.
His hands gripped the holographic controls, fingers wrapping around the triggers. He squeezed the left trigger, testing, the targeting reticule coming to life with a shrill pinging noise, changing from blue to red in colour. He switched systems with a flick of his wrists and did the same for the burst cannon and gun drones before cycling back to the main gun.
We are ready then. Let it begin.
Just in case you missed it (what, you don’t check Warhammer Community page every day, like religiously?!), Black Library are looking for new writers!
If you fancy your chances then I suggest you don your writers hat and favourite pencil, curl up on the old scroll wingback leather Chesterfield in your personal library, stoke the dying embers of the fire, top up the brandy and get going on a new tale of grimness and darkness in the grimdark.
Black Library Open Submissions
There is also some brief advice from Black Library authors in there too that is well worth checking out. Open submissions are now, er, open! Closing date is the 10th April, so get cracking!
His crisis suit slammed into the blood soaked ground, the retro-thrusters of the jetpack firing at the last possible moment to lessen the jarring impact of the Low Altitude Deployment. Shas’Vre Pech Diael immediately surveyed the scene of carnage around him, the driving rain doing its best to conceal the ruined city from his sensors. The Ork horde had already swept through the outer defence lines of Von’yth, and the surviving colonial garrison was desperately manning the last line of fortifications.
Ka’mais gazed down on the world of Sha’draig. Beyond the shimmering distortion of the loading bay’s containment field she could see the emerald green oceans and brown land masses, streaked through with putrid threads of pink and purple, each strand pulsating with the forms of millions of writhing organisms. As she watched, massive shapes drifted across the vista heading for the planet’s surface. Swollen, glistening hulks of alien flesh faintly reflected the systems cold blue sun, as the bioships moved into low orbit, tendrils outstretched towards the surface. They had begun their feeding, and soon Sha’draig would be picked clean of life.
The battlesuit slammed into the tainted metal floor of the makeshift fortress, scattering gore slickened debris all around and sending a deafening boom throughout the ramshackle structure. From the dripping shadows, skulking biological horrors shrieked their answer to the sudden cacophony. With steam still rising from its red hot armour plated surface, the Riptide unfurled itself from its crouching position, leveling its weapon systems at the enemy.
++++++ Inquisitor Garalov, date 966.M41, submission of report from Praea Mundis, Ref: GAR.089/PM344.563.445.239/Ordo-As. Operation ‘Broadsword’ is in effect, Priority: Primarus Extremis. For the Office of the Master of the Administratum ONLY++++++
‘My first cause for alarm should have been the somewhat uncooperative, dare I say deliberately obstructive, nature of the Dark Angels hierarchy when I inspected their recruitment facility on Praea Mundis. The Chapter headquarters, otherwise known as the Rock, is currently deployed in an unknown theatre of war and as such this is the largest administrative facility available at the time of this investigations commencement.’
The soldiers’ uniform was covered in dust and scorch marks, his steel breastplate tarnished by whatever vile corrosive liquid had been sprayed across him. His neck had been hurriedly bound with a filthy scrap of material torn from the sleeve of his left arm, itself nothing more than a cauterised stump. A red stain blossomed beneath the rudimentary neck dressing, growing by the second. He was dragged into the bunker unceremoniously by two flanking guards, each holding him under the arm as his feet dragged lifelessly behind them. The soldier gazed around uncertainly, head lolling from side to side as glassy eyes flittered around the room.
‘Runner from the 82nd Sir!’ one of the guards announced.
Joens turned to regard the new arrival with an air of ambivalence typical of one in command. ‘Well, let’s have it man!” he said tersely, addressing the stricken soldier directly.
Jequn stood motionless as the heavy metal ramp swung down, allowing the first shafts of the dawn light into the Thunderhawk’s darkened compartment. His helmet already locked into the mounting ring of his power armour, the sergeant watched as the atmosphere inside the ship exploded out into the freezing void, a cloud of ice crystals on an invisible breeze. The Black Templar’s wasted no time in deploying, rapidly disembarking and spreading out in pairs to secure the landing perimeter. Twenty armoured warriors crunched onto the red, gritty surface of Ar’zenda Minoris, a pitiful little world at the far edge of the Imperium. A dull rumble signified the Thunderhawk’s return to its standoff position in low orbit, the mighty engine’s roar muffled by the moon’s thin atmosphere.
The vox hissed static and squawked to life. ‘-ompany, advance!’
Squad Juno leapt forward without hesitation, emerging from the cover of the ruined shrine with bolters roaring. As their shells raked the shattered sanctum ahead, return fire lashed at the Space Marines. Orange tracer rounds flicked through the air, ricocheting off the thick ceramtie of the Crimson Fist’s power armour as they surged relentlessly forward into the squall. The sanctum was heavily defended, but it has to be taken. The Orks desecrated it with their presence. They had to be purged.