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Notable Conflicts

Locuto-scribe +++ Apologist
Transcription datum +++ Thu, 2013-06-20 09:21

023: Close Encounters

Notable conflict

Close Encounters

4-200613-811-M41

At this point in the war, reinforcement notices had reached several nearby planets. Some answered the call to repay old debts to the governor of Frigia, others to fulfill dreams of glory. Still, Frigia was a distant and unimportant entity; and many planetary governors preferred to keep their armies close at hand, to ward off potential Tau strikes of opportunity. The Brightsword Protectorate's expansionist plans were well-known, and most Governors in the sector had grown increasingly conservative and jittery about sending their forces afield.

Nevertheless, enemy advances on Frigia had drawn in many forces, swelling the Penitent Crusade that hung in orbit. Mass Imperial Guard transports from the Richenbach and Hesiod systems were plighing their way through the turbulent warp to reinforce the embattled sysytem, and even some of the famed Clinth Commandos had been sighted.

The Astartes, commonly the first to respond to Imperial distress, had provided a typically haughty and divided front. While strike forces of Space Wolves and Carcharadons had made planetfall early in the campaign, Chapter Master Kanatai of the Emperor's Hawks and First Brother Sarapis of the Sons of Spectra had given a negative response – the first citing his forces' deployment against rebels and orks across the Boten Cloud Nebula, the latter seeing no reason to explain to 'lesser men'. The Stars of Dorn and Emperor's Hammers, both from neighbouring sectors of space, had either declined to respond, or the astropathic messages they received had been lost or misinterpreted.

It was pure chance that the Novamarines were nearby, and in a position to respond. Fresh from their successful defence of Throne in the Tonnabruggias system, Captain Mercian had begun a slow sweep towards the rimwards entrance of the Hyperion Warp Corridor, with the intent of returning to Honourum, far from the Antona Australis sector, when they received the distress message. Their small fleet drew into the system from the rim, and were horrified to find space cobwebbed with tyranid vessels, all seemingly searching for something. With hindsight, it is likely the tyranids of Hivefleet Dagon were attempting to recontact orphans of Splinterfleet Cerberus on the surface of Frigia. 

The Novamarines, all-too-aware of the threat posed by Dagon after the events on Macragge, immediately ordered boarding assaults against the Tyranids, aiming to disrupt their telepathic contact.

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A warm, spore-laden fog hung over the spongy surface of the cavern. Tiny flesh-beetles skittered over writhing digestion grubs. With a crackle of splitting resin, a pink sphincter-portal tightened spastically. Its meat turned grey, then split, weeping a blackened fluid as the meltacutter cut it open. Brother Ynnos, only newly advanced from the Scouts, pushed through the remaining burnt material warily, his feet light and his bolt pistol held up in front of him. The floor in the chasm spasmed and puckered softly around his boot, drawing back from the cool plasteel. The air was filled with buzzing and sonorous arrhythmic thumps.
'Clear.'

Even the vox seemed slowed and strange inside the vessel. The Astartes had fought in every manner of warzone, from chirping sweat-jungles to the sweetapple orchards of Throne. Nothing was like fighting the tyranids.

Sergeant Nepoidon drew up alongside Ynnos, and placed a hand on his pauldron – though whether this was meant to steady Ynnos, or to derive some familiarity himself, wasn't clear to the battle brother.
'Stinking tyranids,' the gnarled veteran began; and his casual disgust did more to reassure the shaken Ynnos than he liked to admit. 'Give me an honest fight against the greenskins any day.' He turned away, and used his power maul to indicate two gelid, muscular masses on the far side of the chamber.
'More of these. Burn 'em.' The Space Marine boarding party had been destroying the fleshy pink lumps for perhaps half an hour as they pushed through the eerie vessel. In truth, no-one knew whether they served a vital purpose to the running of the craft, but with little else to go on, Captain Mercian had opted to destroy anything that stood out.

Nepoidon watched as the four marines under his command fanned out; two priming krak charges while Ynnos and the other novitiate covered the remaining sphincter-portals. He bowed his head slightly to concentrate as a faint hissing came through on the command channel of the vox. He strained his Lyman's ear, squinting unconsciously. Were those faint words?

He blinked in surprise as the line broke into a series of stuttering farts that Nepoidon realised was boltgun fire. He blink-clicked a locator rune to find the Captain, and began to walk back towards the tattered remains of the portal. Without turning his head, he toggled the squad vox. 'Follow me, Novamarines. Looks like this thing's got an immune system.'

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A full report can be inloaded here:

http://www.warseer.com/forums/showthread.php?364242-The-PCRC-presents-Cold-Feet-on-Frigia&p=6816669&viewfull=1#post6816669