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Carnal Sins (40K)

Posted: 2017-02-14 03:26am
by Imperial Overlord
Just when she had begun to think she had escaped pursuit, they found her. Not that she had believed they would ever stop pursuit, but she had evaded contact for over a year and the trail had to have gone cold. She had felt it was safe enough to stay in one place and gather resources, but that throw of the dice had been disastrously lost.

She had done much to change her appearance. Her hair was cropped short and dyed red and contacts had turned her blue eyes gold. She had taken a heated knife to her face, leaving a burn scar that covered most of her left cheek She was tall enough that the muscle she carried was easy to overlook and it was common for many to mistake her for a man when she was dressed appropriately.

She had taken a place in the entourage of the local crime kingpin, working as muscle and a medicae for Vladic Roskov. He wasn't in the business of checking papers and most of the local police took his orders. The Arbites would wipe him off the face of the planet if they bothered to try, but they didn't care about nonpolitical crime lords in backwater cities. Someone with medical training was useful to the organization and so she had taken the offer without being pressured. The possibility of getting enough money for an off world ticket had been too tempting and for Roskov getting a medic who could double as muscle and had brains as well was a delight.

Roskov had taken to holding court in what had probably been an old folk temple back when Yscar had been a sprawling semi-rural town instead of a industrial city and provincial capital. The walls of the old temple had been given a fresh coat of white paint and the wooden pillars had received a layer of mauve. Where the altar had sat now held a small dais and hand carved wooden chair with a purple cushion. Roskov lounged in paramilitary finery consisting of dark blue silk pants and tunic and gold buttons, braids, and frippery. His sloppy grey stubble and pot belly ruined the effect, but his porcine eyes were clear and his mind was supple and alert.

There were a dozen of his soldiers around, wearing flashy tunics and under robes whose colours clash violently with the sometimes flashy, sometimes drab over robes. These were cinched with sashes which held pistols, blades, and batons. She was wearing a black over robe over an armored body glove with a bulky doublet that was actually a thinly disguised flak vest with ceramic plate inserts. The combination rendered her androgynous and inconspicuous. The back end of the audience hall held a dozen supplicants and vassals.

Ajeda, the owner and operator of a local joy house, was negotiating the terms for opening another establishment. Caked on make up hid her true age and the silver streaks in her black hair were dyed in. Bellona wasn't really paying attention and her gaze drifted over to the next petitioner.

Vargo Kliest was next, a long faced man of middling size who dressed in a red and white striped robe. He had recently set up a business involving gambling on sports and lending money. Vargo was accompanied by his bodyguard, a two and a half meter tall ogryn in a stained red robe. The brute's face was mostly covered in a rebreather grill and was heavily cyber augmented, possibly even a servitor. At some it was hard to tell the difference between stupid, quiet, obedient and brain-yoked.

That's when she heard the shooting outside. Multiple guns and not common slug throwers. She knew the weapons well. Godwyn-De'az pattern bolters being fired rapidly on semi-automatic accompanied by the detonation of shells when inside flesh and solid objects. Roskov bolted up in his chair as screams rang through the air. The chamber dissolved into panicked chaos. Roskov hurried to the door behind the dais. Bellona was already pushing her way there, but the entourage of bodyguards was too dense.

She changed course and took cover behind the closest pillar as she heard the fall of heavy boot steps and more shots from the vestibule. Several bolt rounds punched through the red painted double doors and into the audience chamber, blasting craters in the wall. She saw Kliest's ogryn take cover behind another pillar and drag his master after him. Only half the crowd had an idea of what was going on and cover was in short supply. Then the doors were kicked in.

It was Sister Camilla. A brief glance was enough to recognize her despite the fact she was wearing her helmet with a white face plate. The placement of her purity seals and the extra aquilas on her coal black armour was a dead give away. She began to rapidly and systematically began killing everyone in the open. That was Camilla all right. Blood of ice and if in doubt send them to the Throne for judgement. Bellona drew her pistol from her belt.

It was a heavy revolver, an eight shot mid-calibre model with a long barrel designed with accuracy and high powered ammunition in mind. The high velocity hard nosed rounds loaded into the gun were effective against light body armour, but against Sororitas powered armour only hits to the gaps between plates would be worth a damn. Sisters Renata and Eusebia followed after her, which was no surprise.

Neither of them wore their helmets. They wore their hair cropped short and dyed white. Renata's face was even more angular and harsh than Bellona's. Eusebia's was marked with fleur de lys tattoos on both cheeks and a ugly scar on the left side that went to her mouth that was the legacy of an Ork chain blade. Eusebia was wielding a chainsword and bolt pistol while Renata was wielding two bolt pistols. They were loaded with Metal Storm rounds. Both sisters sprayed the crowd.

Metal Storm rounds boasted proximity sensors at their tips, detonating in a cone of flechettes before striking their targets. The effect wasn't much short of autofiring airburst frag grenades. Steel darts lanced into flesh and tore into wood and plaster. Blood painted the walls and floor. Splatter hit the ceiling and washed over the wood pillars. Meat clothed in wet rags hit the floor.

Camilla advanced, supported by her sisters. A few shots flew from the survivors, but they were too rattled to shoot straight and the one round that hit ricocheted off her breastplate. Bellona took a deep breath. The pistol was heavy in her hand. If this didn't go right, she was dead.

Kliest's ogryn lunged with speed that meant that he had to be boosted. He grabbed Camilla's arm and pulled her forward into a clinch. On average most men are stronger than most women and most Sororitas are stronger than most men. In turn Sisters Militant tend to be stronger than their Hospitaller, Dialogous, and Famulous brethren and Sister Camilla was stronger than most Sisters Militant. With her armour further boosting her strength, Bellona would have bet she was a near match for Astartes but this ogryn was stronger. It held her in front of it as a living shield.

Eusebia fired high, trusting in the strength of Camilla's armour to protect her from the Metal Storm rounds. The ogryn retreated behind the pillar before she could get more than a round off but that didn't stop Eusebia from continuing to fire. The flechettes tore up the pillar's paint job and exterior but Eusebia couldn't land a solid hit. She began to circle around, ramming her chain sword into the guts of a man hiding behind a closer pillar, tearing them out and shredding them when she pulled the blade free.

Renata circled in the other direction, sending two more shots in the direction of survivors. As she passed to the outside of the pillars, Bellona turned toward her. Their gazes locked and then Bellona pulled the trigger. The slug blew Renata's brains out the back of her skull and she slumped to the ground.

She had done it. She had killed a Sister. Something swelled up inside her, but she forcefully put it down. Deal with it latter. She had to live in the now. She rushed towards Renata's corpse.

Two more Sisters came through the door. Dulcea, who was anything but sweet and Flora who was beautiful. Neither had the bad habit of not wearing her helmet. Flora had her bolter in her arms and Dulcea had her power sword in her right hand and her plasma pistol in her left. Flora opened up on her.

Bellona dived for cover and made it as bolt rounds tore chunks out of the pillar. Renata's corpse and her weapons were tantalizingly out of reach. Odds are that Flora would take her apart if she tried to grab Renata's weapons. Throne. Throne Throne Throne Throne.

Light flashed behind her, accompanied by a crackling sound and then a scream. It was an energy weapon discharge but definitely not Dulcea's plasma pistol. The discharge was too long and the sound was wrong to be that weapon. A power armoured body hit the ground. "Witch!" Flora screamed, an edge of hysteria in her voice.

Maybe the Emperor did love her. How else to explain the luck of having an augmented ogryn and a renegade witch in the same room when her Sisters caught up with her? Maybe not all of it was a lie.

She reached out and grabbed Renata's leg and pulled. The bitch was heavy enough alive and in workout unitard, but dead and in armour it was as if she was made of lead. Still, she moved. Slowly, almost reluctantly, but she moved.

She had dropped one of her bolt pistols in death, but the other had come with the body. Bellona switched magazines, loading in Kraken pattern armour piercers. She rose up to fight.

The ogryn was partly exposed, the pillar he had been using as cover looking as if huge bites had been taken out of it. He was holding the limp body of Camilla as a shield in one hand. He extended the other.

White fire blazed from hand. Sparks and flamlets splintered off from the stream to shift into symbols and glyphs of white fire that formed shifting patterns around the warp fire flow. It struck Flora dead on and consumed her in moments.

As Flora's blackened and charred body hit the ground Bellona moved forward, gaining a clear line of sight to Dulcea. The Godwyn-De'az bolt pistol bucked in her hands as she put three rounds into her chest. Dulcea staggered back and tried to raise his plasma pistol, blood pouring from the wounds in her chest and abdomen. Bellona shot her twice more in the heart. Dulcea fell.

"Good shooting," rasped the ogryn as he dropped Camilla's body.

"There's probably more outside," said Bellona. "To catch anyone who tries to escape."

"That can be dealt with," said the ogryn.

Kliest came out from behind the pillar and began to strip Camilla's weapons. "Nice piece" he said as he picked up her bolter.

"Who are you?" she asked the ogryn.

"The man who saved your life," he replied. "Come with me if you want to live."

Re: Carnal Sins (40K)

Posted: 2017-02-14 08:42am
by Grimnosh
This should be interesting as we wait on "Be Careful What You Wish For".

For the fun of it I once converted a Seraphim Sister Superior into a Chaos Lord/Lieutenant for my Lost and the Damned army, it was fairly simple for a conversion, a set of wings from one model to replace the jump pack and a chaos sword to replace her power sword, but it looked pretty nice to me.

Re: Carnal Sins (40K)

Posted: 2017-02-18 07:47am
by Imperial Overlord
The ogryn pulled off his hood, revealing a man wearing battered grey carapace armour that covered him from the neck down. He lacked the squat build of the ogryn she had seen previously, but he was still powerfully built. Her eyes drifted over the discarded robe and noticed that parts of it were bulked out with padding. A huge bolt pistol hung at his waist along with a knife that was almost a sword. Not ogryn at all. Astartes.

"We have the prize," he said into his rebreather and presumably his vox. "She says there maybe more Sororitas covering the exits." He paused and then looked back at her. "There are a dozen Sororitas surrounding the area. What in the name of the heartless void did you do? Assassinate a cardinal?"

"Yes," she replied as she stripped weapons and ammunition from the bodies of her fallen sisters.. This was going from strange to surreal. "Don't you know?"

"No," he replied. "Cover and prepare for breach. They won't be expecting it, but with all the shooting having stopped and none of their sisters answering, they'll know they've lost the assault team. Sister my sister, take them out. Let your pet out to play."

"What are you talking about?" she said.

"I wasn't talking to you," he answered.


The street had emptied with preternatural speed when the Sororitas had started pouring out the back of the covered trucks. Those who were slow on the uptake got the message when they gunned down the guards on the outside of the old temple. She had retreated to an alley in case the Emperor's Bitches got a little trigger happy.

"Mistress," Venn asked urgently, "what do we do now?" The big man was as faithful as a dog and not much brighter. He would face down a daemon for her, but planning wasn't his strong suit.

"Quiet," she said. "Follow me," she said hurrying down the alley. The old temple was one of the few survivors of what the city had once been. Now the neighborhood was crowded on all sides by brick and plaster tenements, some with shops on their ground floors. Long term habs for workers who trudged into smoke belching factories shortly after dawn and were spat out exhausted at the end of the day. A few blocks away the people discarded or broken by the Imperial machine lived in even seedier apartments or in the streets below. She liked this neighborhood. It reminded her not to be bitter about the hand fate had dealt her.

She moved behind a building, not because she was afraid of being seen, but because she wanted to be out of the line of fire. She reached into a pocket of the black lace dress she wore. Everyone gave women in mourning garb wide birth which meant it was so very useful for these kinds of jobs. She pulled out what appeared to be a brass pocket watch and opened it. Red smoke came boiling out.

The Smoke coalesced into a seven foot tall red skinned humanoid. His eyes were featureless pools of white and he was clad in an antique harness of glittering brass. Greaves and vambraces shielded his limbs and a pleated skirt hung from his waist. A cuirass displaying goldlike musculature shielded his torso and a heavy helmet with a blood-red crest covered his head. His teeth were fangs and his hands ended in black talons. He had the wet iron stink of old blood about him and he was armed with a leaf shaped stabbing sword and a spear. He was old, the unending cycle of raiding and feud, the crab pile power plays and wars of petty city-states personified and incarnated. His true name was almost unpronounceable, but he answered to The Warmonger.

The appearance of a bound daemon cleared the streets in much the same matter as the appearance of a Sororitas kill team but without the collateral damage when the sisters opened fire. He snarled in murder-fury. She calmly pointed in the direction from which she had come. "Kill the Sororitas. Do not harm members of my coven. Obey my brother's commands. Go!"

The Warmonger snarled again and the loped away at a speed equal to a fit man's sprint. The Warmonger was, as ever, eager to kill. The Sororitas guarding the parameter spotted him before he cleared the alley. The shouted alarms into their voxes and opened up. Bolt rounds smacked into the walls of the buildings next to him and the ground and cracked his brass breastplate but it did not slow him in the least. He threw his spear like a javelin and then leaped.

The spear punched through a Sister's torso and pierced into the heart of the power pack on her back. She fell, bright blood streaming from the ruptured lung, and the spear reversed course and flew out of her body and back into The Warmonger's hand. The daemon landed amongst four Sisters.

They hand stood their ground, firing as he advanced and scoring an impressive number of hits on their inhumanely fast target. Their unflinching steadiness while confronting the malefic was a credit to their order. The Warmonger's harness was cracked and shattered from multiple bolt round hits, but his warp formed flesh was mostly undamaged. He took a Sister's right arm at the elbow when he landed. He cut off another's head, the helmet bouncing on the street as gore sprayed The Warmonger and her sisters. The survivors shot him at point blank range while other Sisters rushed to flank the daemon and relieve their brethren. The Sister with the severed arm appeared to take no notice of the injury and clumsily drew a bolt pistol with her left hand.

The Warmonger killed her with a spear thrust that pierced her helmet straight through. Bolt rounds blew open his left shoulder and upper arm. Gore bubbled from the wound which barely inconvenienced him and would shortly be healed. He hacked another down, her armour resisting the first two blows that cracked a pauldron and her breastplate before piercing her chest. As she fell, blood gushing from the awful wound, she tore open his right thigh with her chain sword. The wound barely slowed him at all, but with having dispatched all his foes, the last obstacle to a clear field of fire fell away. Eight Sisters of Battle opened fire at close range.

The daemon's harness disintegrated under the barrage. Unnatural flesh was blown open in sprays of smoke and ruby-red gore. The daemon swooned on mangled legs, its bloody weapons slipping from slackening hands. The Sisters did not slacken their fire. Those with bolt pistols drawn emptied their magazines while their compatriots with bolters continued to fire. They reloaded to continue the barrage by the time their Sisters had come to the end of their own magazines. The Warmonger was an almost unrecognizable puddle of bubbling and smoking gore lying in the street.

"A witch is helping the traitor," Sister Bernadette growled. "Recall Sister Regula's squad and call in the Arbites to form-." Her voice was cut off by Sister Isadora shooting in the face at point blank range with her bolt pistol. The first and the second round cracked her helmet and snapped her head back. The third punched through the compromised armour and covered the inside of her helmet with the inside of her skull.

Isadora leveled her bolt pistols at Sister Gloria, who was standing next to Sister Bernadette, and opened fire again. Four bolt rounds slammed into Gloria, cratering her armour and breaking five ribs. She fell as her remaining Sisters unleashed their fury on Isadora.


It is hard to be stealthy while wearing powered armour and even harder when one is in a hurry. The famed Raven Guard could do it and the Alpha Legion and Night Lords were known to possess similar skills and utilize armour with the requisite modifications. Sister Regula's squad, entering through the back of Roskov's headquarters, did not possess those skill or modifications. Even if they had, the crack of their bolters as they slaughtered those trying to escape gave them away.

Regula stepped over Roskov's body to kick open the door to his audience chamber, bolter in one hand and frag grenade in the other. The first chance to seize the traitor belonged to the squad sisters she had betrayed so they could begin their atonement for failure, but honour of the entire order was tainted. If Dulcea's squad didn't have her by now, they would have to accept the rebuke of her assistance. The traitor could not be allowed to escape.

She tossed the grenade into the room full of corpses. She could see the bodies of Dulcea's squad intermixed with the mangled bodies of the criminal scum. A few survivors were using some chewed up wooden pillars as cover. Sister Felice tossed her grenade as well.

They arced through the air towards the huddled survivors and then suddenly reversed course to land among Regula's squad. "Witch!" Sister Concordea yelled. The grenades went off.

Shrapnel gauged lines of damage across their armour's paint and the concussion of the blasts rocked the Sororitas, but did no real damage. A man in a dark rose from behind the pillar with a plasma pistol in her hand. Dulcea's pistol. Blinding blue-white light. Oblivion.

Regula's headless body toppled. The Sororitas entered the room, blazing away as they did so to suppress enemy fire. The initial hail of fire drove their enemy back behind cover and tore up the pillars. Then the giant stepped out with his hand raised. Green light blazed forth, forming a wheel of occult symbols spinning around his hand.

Bolt shells stopped in mid air as if they had hit a wall. "Target the witch!" Concordea ordered. Kliest peeked his head out and opened up his bolter, hitting nothing but ruining the fire of two Sisters and forcing them to dodge. Steamed hissed from the overload vents on Bellona's plasma pistol and she dropped it, firing her bolt pistol left handed at Concordea. Concordea moved to take cover behind the dais.

The first round missed. The second Kraken slug glanced off the armor as it hit at an extreme angle. The third shot also impacted at an angle and cracked the side of Concordea's armour instead of penetrating and the fourth missed entirely.

"Traitor!" screamed Sister Felice, firing futilely at Bellona, the spent bolt rounds detonating in mid air a meter from her. Bellona put the last three Kraken armour piercers into her chest. She ejected the spent magazine and reloaded with standard ammunition.

Sisters Concordea, Simone, and Fausta rushed forward. They hit the kine barrier, slowing for a moment as if they were pushing through molasses, and then they were through. Kliest put five bolt rounds into Simone's chest, cratering her armour and blasting her to the ground. The giant fire a single round from his bolt pistol at Fausta.

She was swallowed up in an explosion of cyan and vermilion flame. Her body, tongues of warp fire trailing from every limb, staggered back and then fell. Concordea passed through the kine shield and bore down on Bellona. Her finger closed on the trigger.

Bolt rounds from Kliest struck her arm and shoulder, the impact knocking her aim off line. A bolt shell whistled passed Bellona's ear. She returned fire. Concordea staggered as she was caught in Bellona's and Kliest's fire, her armour cracking under multiple bolt round impacts.

There was another blast of warp fire and she fell. Smoke rose from the muzzle of the Astarte's pistol. "Enough of that. And you don't need to say it Felix, you were right. It definitely would have been better to snatch her three days ago."

"I don't need to say it if you know it, lord," Kliest replied. "Now we only have to get out of here before we're swarmed by Imperial forces, kill everyone else who tries to stop us, escape into hiding, and convince her to help us. Easy."

"And if I say no?" Bellona asked.

"Will you?" the Space Marine asked. "Do you have a better plan?"

"No, but I don't know you."

"We don't know you either. So we're even. That being said, come with us. We'll get you to safety."

"Throne," she cursed softly. "Alright. Let's go."

Re: Carnal Sins (40K)

Posted: 2017-02-18 09:27am
by Grimnosh
There was another blast of warp fire and she fell. Smoke rose from the muzzle of the Astarte's pistol. "Enough of that. And you don't need to say it Felix, you were right. It definitely would have been better to snatch her three days ago."

"I don't need to say it if you know it, lord," Kliest replied. "Now we only have to get out of here before we're swarmed by Imperial forces, kill everyone else who tries to stop us, escape into hiding, and convince her to help us. Easy."

"And if I say no?" Bellona asked.

"Will you?" the Space Marine asked. "Do you have a better plan?"

"No, but I don't know you."

"We don't know you either. So we're even. That being said, come with us. We'll get you to safety."

"Throne," she cursed softly. "Alright. Let's go."
Its always fun when you have a choice.

Re: Carnal Sins (40K)

Posted: 2017-03-01 07:02am
by Imperial Overlord
Bellona followed the Astartes out the door and into the street. There was the familiar stench of voided bladders and bowels mixed with the rich iron tang of spilled blood, but the bodies strewing the street were a shock. Sister after Sister, blasted, cut open, maimed, and decapitated. Most appeared to have died next to each other, killed by weapons similar to what they wielded. The streets were eerily empty of anything but the fallen.

Two people stepped from around a parked cargo truck. One was woman, dressed head to toe in widow's black. The other was a light skinned bald man, bulky and imposing. He had a Sororitas bolter slung on his shoulder. Bellona raised her arm and the plasma pistol.

The Astartes gripped her forearm and held the gun low. "Friends," he said.

"Is that what we are, my brother?" asked the woman.

"I hope so, my sister," he replied.

"We have time, but not that much of it," she said. "Let's get moving."

"As you say," the Astartes replied. "We have a little time. Felix."

Kliest responded nervously. "My lord, with respect and fealty, there is no way I'm going to haul one of those bitches into the van."

"I was going to say strip ammunition and weapons."

"Oh. Oh yeah. No problem lord." He rushed to the nearest Sororitas and began stripping ammunition magazines.

"Follow my sister's instructions," the Astartes said to Bellona. "We'll get you out of here." He headed back inside.

"Where are you going?" Bellona asked.

"To retrieve some undamaged armour," he replied as he vanished into the crime lord's townhouse.

"Come here, my dear," said the widow. The bald man was climbing into the cab of the truck. "Are you hurt?"

"No," Bellona replied.

"Good," said the woman. "Wouldn't want you bleeding out half way to the safe house would we? Get in the back. You'll have company soon enough."

Bellona's eyes flickered back to the townhouse. "Where are we going?"

"Out of town."

"There's no way the authorities won't stop us."

"That's fine," said the woman as she lead Bellona over to the unmarked cargo truck. "They won't hold us. That's the trick. Just get in and be patient. We'll be leaving soon."

Bellona climbed in and sat down on one of the benches running the length of the truck's back. It was sized for ordinary humans and wouldn't have been that comfortable for Sororitas in armour, but endurable. They had traveled without markings to surround and capture her with overwhelming force and no outside interference, but it hadn't worked out, to say the least.

Kliest or Felix or whatever his name really was, dropped an armload of weapons and ammo inside. Her hurriedly put in carry bag and then went out for more. Who were these people and what did they want? They didn't know who she was, but they had the capacity to slay squads of her former Sisters in order to achieve their goals.

There was a loud thump as the body of Sister Renata hit the floor of the truck. Another Sister was tossed on top of the corpse and then the Astartes climbed up with a pair of helmets. He climbed in, followed by Felix and another load of ammunition. He was absurdly large, like a grown man sitting on a child sized bench.

"Get in Felix."

"Yes lord," replied the man with relief. He sat down. "We're a go!" he shouted at the front. The engine rumbled to life and the truck began to pull away.

"What now?" said Bellona. "The authorities will stop us."

"The Sisters didn't bother to inform the locals they were coming," the Astartes replied. "The local enforcers will only have the reports of the citizens to go on and for a fight this heavy, they'll contain and then send in heavy troops. All we have to do is breach the perimeter before they totally lock it down and receive reinforcements."

"What about pursuit?"

"They won't know they've been breached."

"You're sure?"

"My sister is persuasive."

The truck came to a halt. There was the sound of conversation coming from outside. Bellona could here the woman speaking. "You don't need to see our identification. You can go."

A muffled reply. "We don't need to see your identification. You can go."

The truck started up again. "She's a witch too."

"Of course she is," the Astartes replied. "She's my sister. And much more than the local Magistarium can handle without Psykana assistance."

He tapped one of the bodies and his eyes glowed silver. "Ahh. There we go. No more telemetry data."

She looked at him closely, her skin crawling. It was one thing to already know he was a heretic witch, it was another to be this close to him while he did it so casually. His head was shaved bald and most of his face was covered by the rebreather. A cybernetic link covered the base of his skull, but it could just be part of the disguise. His skin was a very light shade of brown and his eyes burned with dark intensity. "Who are you?" she asked "What do you want with me?"

"I am Mithradites Manudaeva. I am here for what you can tell me. Aid me and I will aid you."

"And if I do not cooperate."

He sighed. "I would regret that. I would prefer your active assistance, but I will not be denied the knowledge I am seeking." Her gaze flickered to his pistol and then dismissed it. Even without his witch powers, she was unarmoured and close quarters with an Astartes.

"And if I cooperate?"

"What do you want?" he replied. "Transportation off world? Easily accomplished. New identity? Harder, but also can be done. Wealth? Also within reach. Joining us? Again, easy enough. But I must have your cooperation."

"You don't know who I am, but you want what I know."


"How is that possible?"

"I followed the path my sister found in the warp. It lead us towards the one who would be able to help us. We think that's you."

"If you're wrong?"

"Problematic. You're a good fighter though. We could still come to an understanding. Your service would be of value."

"Who would I be serving?"

"I already told you my name."

"I mean what master, what cause? Who do you serve, Mithradites Manudaeva?"

"I serve my father, Magnus the Red."

"I don't know that name."

He sighed. "You wouldn't. It has been obliterated from most histories. A few million of the Imperium's countless trillions might recognize that name."

"And that's bad?"

"Once we stood at the gates of a golden age," he said wearily. "We were so close to being able to usher it in. On some worlds, including the one we call home, we actually had. Now all is dust. Ash and dust."

"Well, I guess we've got that much in common," she said. "I lived in a golden palace, but I burned it down. Burned it all down."

"We too were undone by our own actions as well as that of our enemies," Mithradites replied. "But we do not walk the road alone."

Bellona nodded and leaned back. She closed her eyes and let the truck take her wherever it will. She had no better place to go.

Re: Carnal Sins (40K)

Posted: 2017-03-20 01:17am
by Imperial Overlord
The old man sits in a pool of light in dark room. He is dwarfed by the chair he sits in and the desk that is before him. Crystal candles cover the corners of the desk, the holo projection flames providing him with ample light. He pauses in his work reclining in the richly upholstered chair that he has spent a significant fraction of his life in. Two robed servitors stand beside his deck, one to give new papers and the other to receive. A servo-skull floated by his head loaded with communications equipment.

He sighed and leaned forward, picking up a quill pen. He dipped the end in ink from a golden well and then began instructions in small, neat letters to the report in front of him. He dipped the pen again to sign it with a flourish and then applied his seal. He handed the paper to the servitor on his right. The servitor on his left placed another report in front of him.

A harsh, mechanical voice came from the mouth of the servo-skull. "Castigator Deans requests permission to enter."

"Enter," replied the old man in a firm voice. The light from the holocandles did not reach the far side of the room. The great oak door, emblazened with the golden letter I and the hand and scales symbol of the Arbites, swung open and let foreign light into the room.

"Close the door behind you," the old man barked. Deans did so. He then approached the old man's desk, the soft carpet absorbing the sound of his heavy footfalls. Deans was a big man, built like a bull terrier and twice as tenacious. He had broken heretics and criminals on four of the Emperor's worlds and was regarded as fearless and invincible by those who served under him. He never appeared except in full combat gear. His carapace armour was a glossy black, marred with only a few scars and gold of the aquilas on his chest and pauldrons. A shock maul and a bolt pistol hung from his belt. The power knife strapped to his leg and the inferno pistol in his shoulder holster were almost over kill.

In contrast to Deans, the old man was hunched over and skinny. He possessed only a fringe of long white hair on his head and the top of his head, his face and his hands were marked by liver spots. His skin was as pale as Dean's was dark. He wore a black robe with a fringe of white fur that seemed to swallow him up. Other than the quill in his hand and the cypher ring on his finger he was unarmed.

"Magistrate Telurins," said Deans, inclining his head.

"Castigator." There was a pause. "Report."

"Several hours ago there was an incident in the city of Yscar."

"An incident? Be precise Castigator."

"An incident Magistrate. There is, at the moment, insufficient data to describe it more accurately. What we do know is the Adeptus Sororitas are involved. They lost at least a dozen sisters, perhaps more, and took command of the local Magistratum. The entire city has been locked down."

Telurins leaned back in his great chair. "What have the Sororitas reported?"

"Nothing Magistrate. They have told us nothing."

"A major operation, in a major city, incurring significant losses and they have told us nothing? We are the law. This is unacceptable Castigator."

"Indeed Magistrate."

"I can think of only one legitimate reason for them to have engaged in such actions and even that does not excuse the lack of communication. No, this cannot stand."

"Your orders Magistrate?"

"Bring Canoness Honoria before me to account for her actions before the Emperor and His Law."

"Your will be done Magistrate."

"And Castigator?"

"Yes Magistrate?"

"Make sure that you are clear that this is an investigation, not an arrest. Also be clear that this command has the force of law behind it. Disobedience is both treason and heresy. His will be done."

"His will be done Magistrate."

Re: Carnal Sins (40K)

Posted: 2017-03-20 05:11am
by Grimnosh
Considering that the Adeptus Sororitas feel that the only law they obey is the Emperor's will this is definitely going to be fun with the heads of both the Soroitas and the Arbites clashing.

Re: Carnal Sins (40K)

Posted: 2017-03-29 06:43am
by Imperial Overlord
They stopped at a rundown building at the edge of town. Here the buildings were not the densely packed leaning tenements or the towering blocks and towers of the main city. Instead there were the bones of the outlying suburbs, overwhelmed and half consumed by the industrial combines that sprawled around the river, belching smoke into the air and pouring waste into the water. Grim worker barracks were nearby and in the spaces they had not yet consumed were the houses and buildings of the former inhabitants.

Their destination sported an illegible sign and was mostly covered in decaying paint. It was two stories tall and long, sporting a pair of vehicle bays. One rolled open as they approached and drove in. Inside was mostly dust. The fading sunlight streaming through dust caked windows gave enough light to reveal the van waiting there and that the interior of the building had been long ago gutted. Two servo-skulls hovered in the air, silent sentinels waiting patiently for their master to return.

Mithradites walked out of the truck and pulled one of the corpses after him. "We're switching vehicles," he said. He tossed the body in the back of the van and then went back for the other. "Please hurry." He grabbed the next body.

They moved the weapons and equipment from the truck to the van. Felix did a quick run over with what appeared to be some kind of baroque auspex. "Clear," he said.

"Inside," said Mithradites. The Astartes sat in the rear bench, which was actually big enough for his huge bulk. The rest of them followed suit, with the servo-skulls floating in last. The door in front of them rolled open and Venn drove out into barren neighborhood.

As the sun fell they left the outskirts of the city. Before them stretched the road and the river, winding through empty fields and dotted here and there with copses of trees and deserted farm steads. "The factories poisoned the river," said Bellona. "Which poisoned the land. Everything became worthless. The ordinary people moved to the city and took jobs in the factories which made them paupers. The rich and the agricultural combines petitioned for compensation. They presented rich gifts to the See of Yscar and to Cardinal Mescro, who also received and controlled the revenues of the See of Yscar. The industrial combines also gave rich gifts and so the Cardinal arranged that the large holders receive compensation by way of plots created by the Hudan Confiscations. As did the Ecclesiarchy, of course. The small holders got nothing, the rich remained rich, and the Ecclesiarchy got richer."

"Did you kill him for that?" asked Mithradites.

"In part," she replied.

"There was to be nothing like the Ecclesiarchy in the Imperium my brothers were building for the Emperor and mankind," said Mithradites. "And we are the traitors. I wonder if the irony ever strikes the loyalists."

"So the cardinal didn't pass peacefully in his sleep last year?" asked Felix. Mithradites looked at him. "It's the local gossip. At least one of the pious talks about how his successor doesn't measure up every day."

"He was awake and aware when I shot him twice in the chest and once in the face," replied Bellona. "Everything else about the man was a lie so why not avoid the scandal and lie about his death?"

They turned off the main road and passed through a copse of evergreens. The trees screened a huge house set at a remove from the trees. It was a long, rectangular three story high mansion. As they drew closer Bellona could see that the paint was dingy grey, blistered and peeling off wooded walls. They pulled into a garage built into the fall left of the mansion.

Inside was dark. The servo-skulls floated out, projecting beams of light from their mouths. The garage was easily spacious enough for four vehicles, but was empty except for the van and a few fuel cans. "Feel free to walk about the house," said Mithradites. "We are the only occupants. The water is filtered and from a ground well. It's safe for human consumption."

"Perhaps my brother," said Mithradites's 'sister', "you should let Korvan know that we've got company."

"Korvan?" Bellona asked.

"The sentinel, my armourer," Mithradites replied. His sister was stripping off her dress, revealing a black bodyglove beneath. She was slightly paler than her brother and had long dark hair that was elaborate pinned up behind her head. Her face was aquiline and shockingly beautiful and her eyes were pools of blood red with black slits.

"Like what you see?" she asked. Bellona looked away. The witch laughed.

"Sadira," said Mithradites, "don't push. She's got a lot to adjust to."

"As you say, oh my brother. Don't worry, fallen Sororitas. I only bite when invited and there are enough rooms that you can bed down on the other side of the house from mine." She walked out of the garage and into the darkened house.

"Are you alright?" Mithradites asked.

"You are heretics, mutants, and traitors," Bellona replied. "I've trained all my life to kill you. And I'm a murderess and a heretic and you're my only safe harbor. I'll manage."

"Good," said Mithradites. He tapped her chest with his huge forefinger. "What occurs here," and then he tapped her forehead, "and here is yours. I don't require you to renounce your ideas or your beliefs. I don't require your love or for you to worship gods not of your choice. Your thoughts are your own. Who you love, what you love, is for you to decide. There are no spiritual sins.

"There is only what you do. Actions. Betrayal, by action or inaction, will be punished. The spirit can stray, but the meat must be loyal."

Re: Carnal Sins (40K)

Posted: 2017-07-08 05:53am
by Imperial Overlord
Mithradites turned back to the van and pulled one of armoured corpses out and slung the dead woman over his shoulder. He walked into the house, ducking to clear the doorway. "Korvan," he called out. "We have a guest. Don't shoot her unless it is necessary."

Bellona followed in the Astarte's wake. The interior of the house was dark and sparten, with only a fraction of the furniture that she expected of a great house. Motes of dust tickled the inside of her nostrils. Mithradites strode through several rooms before dumping the body on a long table flanked by only three chairs. He then turned around and went back.

Bellona side stepped out of his way, allowing him to get his bulk past. For such a big man wearing so much armour, he was surprisingly light on his feet. A minute later he was back with the other dead Sister. She too went on the table.

Another man entered the room. He was short and slender, coming up to Bellona's chin. He wore a flak vest over battered overalls and had a variety of tools hanging from a harness. He touched a wall control, bringing light into the room. His skin was very dark and his black hair was pulled back in corn rows. "All the lights work now. I had the time."

"Good," said Mithradites. "Anything amiss?"

"Other than how long you took?" he replied, spitting on the floor. Bellona wasn't sure that light did the room any favors. Dust was layered over everything and the wall paper was decaying. The table was marked by nicks and scratches, clearly visible under the thick layer of dust. "Everything's fine master. I see you brought work, which is a good thing. The boredom's been hell. The aristo's left their old furniture, but took all their old books."

"The armour needs to be fixed up and resized."

"Two suits. One and parts or both ladies?"

"Both ladies."

"Power armour isn't something you just put on," said Bellona.

"I'm aware," said Mithradites."

"You're Astartes. You have superior interface abilities. Sadira does not. It's not the same."

"Then its doubly fortunate that we picked you up, but that's the last we'll talk about it."


"You don't want my sister thinking you don't believe she can pick up quickly all on her own. She can be . . . touchy that way."

"Throne of Earth-," began Korvin. His face contorted. "Sorry my lord."

"Apologies are unnecessary. And yes, you're right. That can be a bit of an understatement. Pride and my sister are not strangers."

"Is she truly your sister?" Bellona asked.

"Yes," answered Mithradites. "In every sense of the word. Magnus had a Thousand Sons but he also has a Daughter."

Bellona stared at him blankly. "Never mind. We'll give Sadira a run through when it's time and she'll pick it up quickly, as she always does." He turned to Korvan. "Don't remove the Imperial insignia. We might end up using the suits as a disguise."

"As you say, my lord."

"Thank you Korvan."

"It's good to have you back, my lord. You're better company than the servo-skulls." He took a scanner off of his
harness and flicked it on. A flickering red beam played over a section of armour. "Show me your secrets my babies."

"I would like to see your armour," Bellona asked.

Mithradites stared at her for a moment. "Very well," he replied. "Follow me." He lead her further into the house, heading downstairs when he arrived a descending staircase. She touched the lumen pad on the wall, causing the stairs and the room below to be illuminated. There were several other connecting room, but she ignored them. Bellona only had eyes for the armour.

A small table held weapons. An elaborate staff, an Astartes bolt gun, and a recurved sword. She registered them instantly as her eyes passed over them. The armour held her gaze and with good reason. It was magnificent.

It should have been obscene. There were no aquila's or purity seals, no marks of Imperial institutions such as the Sisterhood's fleur de lys or the Arbites' scales. It stood upright and gleamed. The main cobalt blue, embellished in golden brass. It bore the symbols of the ouroboros, a raptor headed serpent of fire biting its own tail on the pauldrons and breastplate bore the image of a golden sunburst. The helmet was in the shape of a an ancient knightly helm with red eye pieces and a third eye worked in silver above them.

Closer examination revealed the solid lines of brass to be instead be a stream of tiny golden characters packed tightly together. The rune work was foreign to her, but the artistry was unmistakable. "It's beautiful," she said. "I don't see any signs of damage."

"It has a few scars, but they've been filled and the paint covers them."

"The work is very fine."

"My brothers paid for it to be. They paid masters of the Mechanicum to make it for me when I formally became a full brother of the band. Or rather, when it was clear they commission it in time for it be ready for me when I became a full brother when it was clear that I would shortly complete my training."

"The Mechanicus made it for you? Did they have any idea-"

He shook his head. "Not the Adeptus Mechanicus. Their traitors, you would say. Most of them prefer the old title, the Mechanicum. When one goes asking favors from a forge master, it is best to be polite. Or strong. Preferably both."

"I see," she said. "What is it like, the world of traitors?"

"I'm not sure how to answer that. I don't have much to compare it with. This is the longest I've spent on an Imperial world since I was a child and as a child I was a slave. You will, I think, need to see them and judge them for yourself. Have you been to many different Imperial world?"

"I have," she replied. "Five others, counting the world I grew up on but not counting the war zones I was deployed too. I grew up within the Scholo Progenium. I don't remember anything before it. Then there was the Abbey and then there was service. War wasn't bad. It was honest. Horrible, but straightforward. Xenos and heretics fought directly. It was the purge sweeps and ceremonial guard duty that made me a traitor."

Mithradites looked intently at her. "I learned, you see. I learned for who and for why I had really burned villages and gunned down half starved peasant boys armed with bolt action rifles and hand me down lasguns five generations old. I listened as my sworn masters, my holy superiors, made deals to enrich themselves and their holdings with the possibility of famine and peasant uprisings was part of the cost of doing business. Oh the talk was gilded with prayers and piety, but what mattered were land deeds and hard currency transfers."

"So you judged your masters and found them wanting."

"Yes," she said. "There is a . . a contempt of those lower than you encouraged by the order. We are better than others. More devoted, better trained, better educated. We are to defend the righteous, but we aren't the equals of the people. We are the servants of the Emperor, blessed servants. The lower orders are people, but their place is to be cogs in the machine. Lower. Inferior. One does not question those above. One is right to judge them and execute judgement. Once I found my masters guilty, how could I not give them the same judgement as I gave to dispossessed farmers?"

"I suspect it was harder."

"It was. And it ate at me that the Emperor's Justice was so unjust. Ate at me and hollowed my life out until I pulled the trigger, knowing that I had signed my own death warrant. That's when the unexpected happen."

"And that was?"

"I no longer accepted death. I didn't want it to be over. I no longer felt my life was meaningless. I want to live. I wanted to live and shout defiance in their faces and break them as I had broken all their victims. I was a heretic and a traitor and I did not want it to end. Not anymore."

"Then you have found the right place," replied Mithradites.

"I haven't forsworn the Emperor."

"But you have pulled the trigger on the lords of the corpse-empire," he replied. "I meant what I said before. You've joined us willingly. As long as your actions are loyal while you are with us, who and what you keep in your heart is your own affair."

"Alright, under those terms, I am with you."

"Welcome to Wandering Suns."