With the death of Captain Arachas, the Renegade incursions into Imperial occupied territory in Aeterna became reduced. Still vigilant, general Masteen nevertheless had room to deal with some of the different threats facing the city.
One of these threats was the continuing presence of a Kroot brood rampaging the outskirts, looking for new ways to expand their genetic diversity.Masteen ordered Rapied Squad to deal with the threat.
"Beacon secured, sir," said trooper Asp as he reported back to Rapier Squad's camp. The ruined building he stepped into did service as a forward base of operations for Imperial troops in de sector.
"Well done," said Corintus, hanging over maps filled with incomprehensible marks, notes and graphs. Asp glanced at them, but didn't presume to know what went on in the higher echelons and quickly looked back at his commanding officer. "Did you turn it on?"
Asp blinked. "Apologies, Captain...?"
Corintus pulled a small device from a pocket underneath his elaborate camouflage cloack. "My tracer says it's not yet been activated," he said.
Asp swallowed. "I..."
"ENEMY SIGHTED!" came a cry from the roof. "They're the Space Chickens, sir!"
Corintus gave Asp a furious look, swung his bolter over his shoulder and stormed out. "PROTECT THE BEACON," he barked at his squad, who were scrambling to their positions. "COVER RECRUIT ASP AS HE TURNS IT ON."
Asp cringed as he looked towards the beacon. Not a single Kroot in sight, but he was sure that wouldn't last long.
"Move up," said Corintus, who was somewhat to the left of Asp. "I want a base of fire covering the drop zone. Gaius, you take Longus, Specialist Sultus and Lieutenant Bastdorff and wait for the Chickens to reach the beacon. Kill those that come too close."
"And watch out!" he called after Gaius and his detachment. "Those Chickens are sneaky bastards."
Within moments, Corintus' men were in position: they had clearly rediscovered their discipline.
"I can see them," said Lieutenant Lomm.
Corintus nodded in answer. "Wait until they get in range. If they're out for the beacon, they'll have to come to us. Form up the line, hold your fire until I give the command. On my order... unleash hell."
Glancing to his left, Corintus saw trooper Locke aiming down his sight. "I've got a clear shot, sir. Seems to be some big poulty."
Corintus followed his line of vision. "That's their Shaper!" he hissed. "Hold your fire," he ordered the rest of the line. Then, turning to Locke, he said: "Take the shot, trooper."
Locke, who'd succeeded at spattering Sturmm's brains over the pavement before, softly squeezed the trigger of his rifle. The bullet ripped through the foilage across the drop zone. A fountain of blood sprayed into the sky. Locke grinned.
"Well done, trooper," said Corintus. He'd heard of Locke's ability with a rifle, but this was a serious blow to the Kroot brood. "Remind me to commend you to command!"
Locke shrugged. "Shall we stay alive, first, sir?"
Corintus slapped him on the shoulder, then moved back down the line. "ASP! YOU'RE UP!"
Obeying his Captain's command, Asp scurried down the beacon. Sweat pearled on his forehead as he saw the Kroot approaching in the not-too-far distance.
"HERE THEY COME!"
Out of nothing, the Kroot leaps from the bushes and with blinding speed tracked down towards the beacon. Asp's eyes widened as he saw the terrifying shape of a Phantax bear down on him. "Shiiiit...."
The forward Kroot threw crudely constructed smoke grenades, hoping to cover their approach.
"FIRE EVERYTHING!" barked Corintus. His voice was drowned by the ensuring battery of fire as his men obeyed and let rip.
The barrage of fire shredded through the Kroot, who had left the safety of their cover and were now paying the price. Blood spattered everywhere as Kroot hounds were mauled by bolter fire. From Corintus, sergeant Quintus brought his plasma rifle to bear. Searing heat washed over the adjacent troopers as Quintus cracked off two rounds of overheated plasma at the Phantax. In a fantastic display of xeno-dissolving horror, the Phantax' exoskeleton was no match for the hot death being thrown at him.
With the first wave of Kroot repelled, Gaius moved in from the left flank to secure the objective.
Then, across the field, a seemingly older Kroot stepped up. He threw his head back, cried out and moments later a storm of Warp energy descended on Corintus' battleline. His men screamed as they were engulfed and threw their hands in front of their eyes.
The moment passed and in horror Corintus felt his arms and legs to see if they were wounded. They were not. He looked around, as did his men: no apparent damage.Then they looked down at an almost completely boiled Kroot hound. Recruit Brand snorted and put his foot down on the Kroot hound's head, which splattered apart.
"IS THAT ALL YOU GOT?" he cried at the Kroot Shaman.
Meanwhile Gaius and Longus were facing off against several vicious Kroot who had survived the ballistic carnage. Longus took several down before he, eventually, slumped to the ground as well. Lieutenant Bastdorff fared little better, but they were saved by Sultus whose flamer torched several Kroot hounds looking to join the fray.
Asp leaned against the beacon, which showed the promised supplies were now inbound. He let out a sigh of relieve. The next moment a Kroot came out of nowhere and smashed him to ground. Before the death blow could be given, though, Lieutenant Lomm and recruit Brand came to the rescue.
Pulling Asp from the ground, Lomm grinned at him. "Still alive, trooper. Well done."
Asp could not bring himself to laugh. "Yes, sir," he merely said.
The Kroot, seeing they were outmatched and outgunned, took their hike. Satisfied, Corintus said gave Asp a glance and said: "Objective secured, squad. Well done."
But wait... where is Quintus?
Not far from there, not much later, Quintus found himself in a dark place. A brooding sense of fear grew in him as he tried to lift his hurting head. He seemed to be in a pit of sorts. He couldn't see much, but the smell was like that of dried blood and... death.
A sound caught his attention. He looked up and not far from him, he could see a Kroot standing. He was vicious looking (but weren't they all?), but he also stood poised, as if he was about to attack.
His eyes getting used to the dark, Quintus now quickly noticed he was alone with the Kroot in this circular room. His heart sunk as he realized what Intel had told him about Kroot: that sometimes they would capture enemy personnel and pit them against one of their own, to test their genetic material. That was what was happening to him.
He was unarmed. The Kroot was holding a ceremonial Kroot rifle, adorned with feathers and razor-sharp blades. Pissing him off was the smart thing to do.
"Come and get me, chicken," Quintus spat. He raised his arms in a futile attempt to fight.
The Kroot lunged forward, sprang in the air and buried the back-blade of the rifle into Quintus' chest. Intense pain ripped through Quintus' chest, but it only lasted a fraction of a moment before everything went dark...
Wow! What a game this was. And what a post battle sequence!
First off: Telruna's Kroot are veterans, compared to my guys. 7+ games and this was my 5th with this squad. I was anticipating being slaughtered. I thought I had everything well thought out: my combat guys down the flank and a base of fire (LOTS of fire) in the center. But when those Kroot came running down the center, I thought I was done for.
When the dust settled after the final turn, though, I had taken out a phantax, 3 Kroot hounds, 3 Kroot Carnivores and the Shaper. Hm, not so bad at all.
The PBS was eventful, to say the least. Telruna did well in his rolls here (he failed most of them during the game, hehe) and most of his squad survived. For me, I was lucky to keep Longus alive. I rolled 43 (Robbed) for Quintus. Since he was my last officer to roll for and I wasn't about to turn in my Plasma Rifle, I opted to re-roll.
I rolled 21... multiple injuries. Then I rolled a 6... roll 6 times. Oh, crap. As you by now no doubt have gathered, Quintus ended up being chickenfeed. I rolled another robbed (LOL!) and then I rolled Captured...
To make up for that I did roll another TLGT though! One of my BS4 recruits was promoted! Hmm... I'm tempted to make another plasma gunner out of this guy. What do you guys think?
All in all a great game. It was tense, fun and cinematic. What more can you ask for?