Warhammer 40K Rogue Trader: Series 4: We’re so Screwed!

Leaving the Daemon for now, Xanatov and Sigmund turn their attention to the visions coming from one of the planets, dispatching a small group of faithful in a guncutter to investigate.   As the craft descends the comms are filled with religious babble as the crew send the ship into a death dive.  Immediately Sigmund declares the planet off limits, and marks it with a beacon warning all away or face destruction.

Moving on to the next opportunity, Sigmund and Xanatov head down with a group of imperial guard to examine the fertile ruin laden land, finding it open to exploitation, however as they investigate they are set upon by a strange ethereal group of warriors.

Realising these are the hated Eldar, Xanatov enjoys the opportunity to turn the tables on them with the full resources of war an angered Rogue Trader retinue can bring to bear.  Facing utter destruction, the Eldar are open to Sigmunds kind offer of sparing them in return for a group of Eldar working upon the Bismark.

Meanwhile back on the Bismark a battered Aviner struggles to free a possessed Sente, piping Gideons prayers throughout the ship to weaken it.  However as he does so the power cuts out leaving him at the daemons mercy.  Unwilling to kill Sente he tries every opportunity he can to free her from the daemons shackles.

Things turn worse as Gideon and his Zelots arrive, and finding Aviner preventing them from killing Sente, turn their flamers and automatic fire upon him. Facing an onslaught of fire, Aviner tries desperately to turn them to banishment of the deamon rather than killing it hosts, but finds his requests falling on deaf ears.   Finally turning to flee he barely gets to the shadows before the weight of the past few days (and the gunfire) overcome him and he collapses.

Back in the tombs of the planet  the explorers find that below the surface is a wealth of tombs of strange alien beings, moving deeper they come across several items of interest, one of which Xanatov realises is an alien artefact  of unknown nature, but worrying intensity.  Knowing the Lord Captains ways, Xanatov slips the item into his possession silently and out of Sigmund’s view.

As they reach the end of the tombs, a hideous power roars to life, reaching out with tendrils of power.  Instantly returning fire, the crew do little to harm this strange entity, more so seeming to empower it as it tears into the assembled guards.

Aviner awakes upon the Bismarck, to find himself chained heavily above the decks of the, as the Deamon looks upon him, the ruined form of Gideon a tattered play thing in her arms.   She commands corrupted tech priests along the ship, preparing to take the entire ship into the warp without a geller field, to sacrifice them all to her void masters.

Internal systems come back on line, and Aviner realises a week has passed since his collapse.  His heart breaks as he realises any remnant of Sente is surely destroyed by now. With a roar of pain he tears himself from the moorings, collapsing the long distance down to the floor below shattering one arm beyond repair.  Shocked at this unexpected response the daemon cannot respond in time, as Aviner drags his ruined form to the door way, sealing it.

With moments to spare Aviner matches with the machine spirit and locking it away from the daemons grasp.  As the daemon tears through Aviner tearfully frees the Servitors to fire upon Sente and free her through the emperors mercy.  Realising that without Aviners knowledge the ship is locked the daemon launches itself from Sente towards him.

Two final actions occur, a binary burst instructing the Servitors to turn their fire from Sente, and a burst shutting down his bionic heart , then Aviner collapses.  As the deamon tries to possess the dying form before his vital knowledge is lost, the Geller field roars to life once more. Caught in the vulnerable state of mid possession the daemon is torn asunder and cast back to the warp.

As the tech priests scramble to restore Aviners heart, his fading vision sees a breath burst from Sente lungs, alive despite all that occurred, and Aviner fades once more into blessed unconsciousness.

Down on the planet a running battle ensues, as the strange entity reaches deep into the graves, rising forms that set upon Sigmund and Xanatov.  They battle out as a hideous message calls to the stars, the planet shifts sending a beacon calling to civilisations long lost, and once more in the sky comes a horde or razor sharp crystalline crafts that responds to the awakening of one of their own.

The Bismark spy the approaching vessels and, lacking its Lord Captain, manoeuvres, trying to avoid contact as the crystal vessels open fire.  With Sente tranquilised and on suicide watch after the horrors the daemon inflicted, the craft is left to the unwilling combatant Aviner, still recovering from his ordeals, though restored with a bionic arm.   The Bismark barely avoids destruction as the gun cuttter returns from the planet.

Despite the combat going on Sigmund disappears into his chambers, a small flinched metal object within his grasp. Unbeknownst to Xanatov, his alien prize has been requisitioned.  This leaves Xanatov desperately trying to control a panicking ship against the hoard of crafts that faces them.
Despite his valiant efforts, the tide turns against the Bismarck, with huge ruptures breaching the hull and depositing the crew into the harsh vacuum, and fires leaping from hull to stern of the ship.  In desperation the craft breaks for the asteroid fields attempting to hide within, but there is no let up from the merciless assault.  As the crew shift on the edge of mutiny, and the Lord Captain descends into a drugged haze, Xanatov gives a final bleak command, to send the ship on a blind warp jump, the same move that stranded them hear, but this time borne of desperation rather than foolhardy whim.

The craft throws itself to the warp, burning to the core, faced with this terror the crew finally rise up and set themselves upon those still loyal to the Captain. Every extreme measure turned upon them fails to halt the rebellion, even the opening of the crew quarters to the warp fails to cow them.

In the violence the craft seems ready to tear itself apart, when from the centre, the holy aquilla of the emperor glows, saving the Bismark from certain destruction and the Bismark falls back into real space.  Of its tens and thousands of crew less than ten remain alive, and the craft itself ruined.  Warp monstrosities, run wild over the ship and all that stands between them and the utter loss of the craft stand the broken figures of Aviner and Xanatov.

And the dark settles in.

(Note: Apologies for the slightly Avinercetric Episode: I was not present for some of the other players session, so have to go from second hand accounts, which leads to somewhat less detail)

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