Vorlath strode through the camp accepting the plaudits from his warriors but did not stop to taste the victory drinks as he would not be diverted from his task. Resheph his apothecary had voxed to Vorlath with some disturbing news. The Warpsmith had apparently been killed out right by the plague lord’s drones but he was now sitting up on the operating slab demanding that the medic released him back to his duties.
Vorlath swept into the med center and saw the Smith as described chattering binary at the medic. Vorlath strode over dismissing Resheph and clasped the Smith warmly. My brother I thought that you had fallen. A rich deep laugh emitted from the Smith, startling Vorlath and he took a step backwards his hand reaching for his mace that hung loosely at his belt.
My lord? Questioned the Smith, Are you well? Shocked at your return to humanity Vorlath countered. The Smith stood up and clasped his hand over what still passed for his twin hearts and left the med bay. “Resheph” Vorlath voxed, “yes Lord” what has happened to him? He sounds almost mortal again rather than a suit of power armour running on batteries. I am not certain lord, his physiology has changed, he has more flesh parts than before but it cannot be because of the plague. Perhaps our Lady wishes not to lose one of her faithful quite yet. “Maybe ” mused Vorlath but perhaps other forces are at work here.
The Smith walked back to his workshops and activated a command icon on his console. Binary and static flooded out to which the smith returned his own response. A voice this time came over the vox, Good my son, you still live, gather your forces and wipe the stain from your honor, and who knows what the fates will weave for you as your payment to our lord for saving your life.
Thunderous footfalls shattered the silence and a metallic voice crackled ” who are you talking to Smith? He turned and looked up at the Hellbrute, Arkon my brother, The hellbrute leaned forwards it has been a long time since you called me that Smith. Times change old friend and now we fight, I believe that we will need the others as well, Arkon chuckled an oddly disturbing sound and he strode off to awaken Callistus and Asterius both forms of Hellbrute but one was a Contemptor pattern and the other a Decimator. The thought of war made what remained of Arkon’s blood burn with anticipation and all thoughts of the voice and the conversation he had heard we forgotten.
This is a follow on battle between the Emperor’s Children and the forces of Dorkosis the Great Unclean One. Deals have clearly been done as the Warpsmith is back on his feet and out for revenge as something is driving him forwards. His forces are as you would expect dreds, maulers, obliterators whilst the daemons have lots of bodies and the ability with their plague swords to dismantle anything with armour in seconds.
WE rolled the game as Crusade with 5 objectives. I deployed all of my forces bar the daemonettes and herald on a steed who out flanked. Pete deployed Plague Hulk, nurglings, beasts and drones while everything chooses to deep strike in.
I go first and butcher cannon fire rakes the Plague Hulk from the Contemptor and the Decimator but shrouded and in cover the shots fail to harm it. The oblits hose the beasts with assault cannon fire but again the shrouded monsters are unharmed.
Pete’s drones sweep out of cover, the beasts run forwards and the hulk targets the dred unit but scatters wide. The drones leap onto the mauler and inflict 14 hits! However the fates smile as the daemonic aura deflect them all.
The dreds move up and open fire stripping 6 wounds off of the beasts and the other mauler moves to assist its mate, The Smith and his unit move up to contest an objective. The girls arrive and run forwards towards and objective.
The maulers in combat kill 6 plague bearers for no return hits and instability shreds the unit.
The daemon prince and plague bearers deep strike into my deployment zone but scatter into a building. The beasts turn around and howl towards the daemonettes. The hulk moves out of cover and vomits on a dred but does no damage, he then tries to charge but fails in his roll. The beasts charge the girls which turns out to be the last thing they will ever do as in a flash of claws the beasts are wiped out and the girls consolidate onto the nearby objective. The maulers finish off the drones and head for new targets.
The dreds move to threaten the plague bearers but the oblits get there first and in a wall of twin flamers drop 9 of them. The cultists open up on the daemon prince but his armour stops the shots but the decimator wounds it. The mauler and Arkon charge the hulk and smash it to the ground whilst the contemptor and the oblits charge the remaining plague bearers. The bearers lose the combat due to the contemptor’s reactor stopping the glancing hits but stay in the fight.
Dorkosis still hangs around in the warp much to Pete’s disgust, the prince charges the cultists and the champion declares a challenge! The prince clearly laughing so much fails to hit her and she wounds him back but his armour stops the blow. Combat is slow elsewhere as a few plague bearers die but stay in combat.
Arkon chases the nurglings down and with heavy flamer fire and a charge wipes them out. The cultists champion is killed this time and they break and are run down by the prince. The contemptor and oblits finish off their unit in combat and we prepare for the end game.
Dorkosis eventually arrives and deep strikes into the heart of the chaos marines army, he tries to cast his magic but fails and the wall of armour closes in like a noose. The chaos army charges into the last unit of daemons on the table, so that will be 2 maulers, 3 dreds, oblits while the Smith and his unit pull up a chair and settle down to watch the murder.
The last 2 turns comprise of this combat and due to touch of rust and daemonic shields and saves mean that it is a slow war of attrition. But the heavy armour eventually whittles down the plague bearers and the prince who joins the combat is slain by a mauler. Seeing defeat closing in Dorkosis warps off from the field and seethes.
So the battle ended with the marine forces holding 2 objectives, first blood and line breaker, so revenge for the Smith but who or what is behind this return to the fray? Pete’s forces were dogged with bad luck from combat, magic, break tests etc and whilst mine were not much better even the smallest chance is better than none at all.