Act 4 – Stand, Chapter 24

Antara was sprinting as fast as her servos would allow, trying to keep up with Záakesh as, in his crazed state, he ploughed through the mass of red-skinned Tyranids, their white exoskeletal armour giving them no protection them from his warscythe as it carved its path.  Without any thought of self-preservation, Záakesh had dived into the Tyranids at full pace, leaving Antara and the rest of his Lychguard to try and keep up with him, but the further they delved, the less Antara was seeing her Overlord, his towering metallic figure disappearing into the endless numbers of Tyranids.

With the Eldar present, Antara could see that this course of action was necessary.  Záakesh knew that once he was lost to his blood craze he wouldn’t be able to tell friend from foe.  Leaving a thick wall of Tyranids between him and the Eldar he was trying to help was the only sure way to keep him from doing something stupid – he had also mentioned something about it being a fun idea before diving in.

Using one of her new hyperphase swords, Antara cut through the leg of one of the larger creatures before quickly driving the other through its thick neck to behead it as it fell at her feet.  With the giant creature out of the way Antara could see through the crowd in front of her but before she could get a good look, Záakesh was flung back from the mass of bodies. Landing into the ring of Lychguard that were attempting to keep the beasts at bay, Záakesh quickly got back to his feet and roared a challenge at the gigantic beast that had sent him flying.  Standing at twenty foot tall, the Carnifex already had a huge gash over one eye where Záakesh’s warscythe had already found its mark as it charged in.

 

“Fresh batteries!” Sergeant Hollister shouted, hoping someone would hear him over the battle raging at the foot of the city walls.  His men were almost out too, their lasguns running dry and he didn’t know when he was supposed to stop shooting and start evacuating.

They’d all seen it, the destruction of the Tyranid horde only for it to get back up again, swiftly followed by the arrival of another faction in a flash of green – and he had been complaining that his coffee was too cold that morning.  His men were well trained and were prepared for a fight but to fight the apocalypse was a different story.

Firing his own lasgun into the skies to cover the artillery crews from the winged creatures dive bombing the battlements, ne noticed a ring forming in the middle of the Tyranid horde as he followed one’s trajectory into the distance.  The only reason that it caught his eye was the muffled green flashes.  Firing his lasgun, he was met by a beeping sound instead of its usual flash of red light as it finally ran out allowing the creature to escape.  Shouting for ammo again, Hollister grabbed his binoculars to take a closer look at the green lights.

From this distance he could just about make out a ring of metallic looking figures using bright green swords and shields to hold off the sheer weight of the surrounding horde of Tyranids.  Whilst being much smaller in stature than the majority of the beasts around them they fought against them as equals, their strength defying the Tyranids entry into the circle.  For a moment he hoped they might be Adeptus Astartes.  Standing at eight feet tall, the genetically enhanced humans were the only beings that he could imagine holding off such numbers unaided but he hadn’t heard nor seen any sign of a relief force.  Before he could get his hopes up, he turned the magnification on his binoculars up so that he could get a clearer view.  Their bodies weren’t just metallic, but skeletal in design with deep red armour plating covering sections of their body paired with a pale white face mask.  He had never seen a member of the Adeptus Astartes before, only pictures and descriptions, and these beings didn’t look anything like what he imagined the Space Marines of mankind to look like.

In the centre of the ring was a huge beast trying to land a slow and cumbersome strike onto another of the armoured beings as it deftly avoided the huge claws and quickly striking back with some form of spear, its tip appearing to be alive with more of the green energy.  Assuming this was going to be a one way battle, Hollister was surprised when the metallic figure sidestepped an attack and swiftly dived at the creature, driving his spear through the creature’s chest causing it to freeze momentarily before collapsing to the ground.  Stepping onto the corpse of the creature, the metallic figure took a moment to process the battle raging around him before leaping off the carcass and into the mass of Tyranids around him.

Losing sight of the figure in the confusing array of bodies he was interrupted as someone shouted that fresh batteries had arrived – his time as a spectator was over.  Putting his binoculars back in his pocket, Hollister slapped a new battery into his rifle and continued to fight against the endless horde of enemies.

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