Friday, 18 April 2014

A Wild Ride Through The Night

Scavius's armoured boots slammed against the shattered pavement as he thundered down the street. Although it was deep in the night, the darkness around him was scattered by the flickering bursts and glows of flames and explosions, playing out beneath an audience of a hundred thousand stars that filled the inky sky above, seated amongst the dull clouds and watched over by the two moons of the world Scavius was currently on. 

It was a Cardinal World, situated in the vast wilderness of the galaxy's east. Sanctus Espirtus was what the slaves of the Corpse God had christened it. It was an old world, and like it's sibling planets much of it's surface was covered by titanic cathedrals, abbeys, chapels and other edifices to the pathetic faith these wretched humans followed. The streets, like the one Scavius was running down now, were cobbled and lined with an unending stream of famous figures of their dogma. Many had already been defaced or toppled. The rest would join them in time, but for now there were still enemies to focus on. 

Though it had negligible value as anything more than a symbol, the False Emperor's minions had already begun to pour onto it in it's defence. They were still mostly lowly soldiery from the Imperial Army, but an enormous force of the fanatical elite guard of the Imperial Church that held dominion over this world had also made planetfall. Scavius had clashed with elements of them before, and he had relished the experience. He longed to hunt them once more. 

Scavius was not without allies either however. Indeed, the warband of Night Lords which he belonged to had been drawn to the conflict as support for the gigantic crusade of Word Bearers that had first assaulted the world. Scathius sneered with contempt at the thought of them. For all their numerical size they were still blind fools who slaved away to uncaring entities. Like all of his brethren, Scavius knew the truth - to follow any form of faith, to submit to anything other than oneself, was nothing more than weakness. Power was all that mattered, and power could only be gained first hand, by tearing it from others. It would not be handed over by some great being or creature. 

A band of mortal soldiers had appeared at an intersection ahead. They were setting up a gunline, but with his enhanced senses Scavius had already seen the palor of their faces, the quiver in their step. Their fear was almost palpable, and when the guardsmen finally started firing it showed in how their timid shots streaked straight past Scavius and his squad, those sporadic few that hit harmlessly glancing their ancient power armour. As the Night Lords closed with their new quarry, they made sure to live up to their nightmarish impression. 

"We've come for you!" They bellowed, the various distorted voices that left the external speakers on their power armour merging together in a hellish twisted echoing cacophony. At once they followed it by unleashing a torrent of shells from their boltguns. Several Guardsmen were reduced to tattered bloody ribbons of shredded flesh and smashed flack plating by the impacts, but the majority were simply maimed by the barrage. They were the unlucky ones. Moments after the last few boltgun shells hit, Scavius and his squad barrelled into the midst of the Imperials, knives drawn. Scavius shivered with ecstasy as he left his mark upon the new victims, taking much pride in how he found new creative ways to carve them apart. He marvelled in the terrified screams they gave. One of the other members of Scavius's squad opened up his flamer on the weaklings, unleashing a magnificent roaring cascade of burning chemicals that sent them reeling and screaming, fleeing wildly in circles as their forms burned. 

Once they had finished their work, the Night Lords made sure to proudly display their latest masterpieces, splaying the mutilated bodies of their adversaries across the statues that lined the road, as a message to both friend and foe, before continuing along the street. Above them the Raptors that accompanied their warband leapt from spire to spire, blazing trails from their jump-packs streaking against the sky. Occasionally a battered corpse fell from their lofty perches as they forged their own bloody carnage through the district. In the distance, Scavius could hear the roaring engines of the warband's bikers as they sped through the city. The Corpse God's feeble minions could not stop them. 

Scavius laughed inside his armour. The night was young, and the night belonged to them. 

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