Only War – RPG/TRPG Session
Run by Will
Baine Bravith – Jason (jymmijamz)
Father Deimos – Chris (alcoholandaphorisms)
Hans ‘Loki’ Lokisson – Me
Odetta – Tanja
(Write-up by Chris)
A drop pod falling through the atmosphere. Door torn off by a krak grenade explosion to overrule a disruptive machine spirit’s refusal to open. An Ogryn, Baine unconscious in drug induced sleep within. Father Deimos launching himself from the pod, grav chute in hand, followed by Hans Lokisson and their allies, Jools and Stoo. Falling towards the planet where battle awaits.
Thus remains inside the rapidly burning up pod, Odette, squad medic, hunched over the Ogyn, tying off veins and injecting incredible amount of stimulants with pneumatic powered syringes, trying to shock it from its slumber. Nervously RJ and Jops watch, unsure if they should leap to battle or stay to aid their fellow soldiers. Around them red iconography counts quickly towards zero.
Baine still doesn’t move, his system overpowering even the strongest stimulants. Odette’s eyes flicker to the icons, so few left now, hands shaking so much that her next attempt misses the vein completely. Slinging the medi pack over her shoulder she waves to the others to aid her as she braces her shoulder under the creatures, slowly dragging it towards the open door. Hoping the shock of hitting the open air will wake it.
The steps are too slow under its bulk, each consuming another handful of counting icons. Finally, on the cusp of the door way something gives. Muscles complain and ribs go numb, Odette barely slides out from under the bulk before it hits the deck. A crunch signifies she did not escape completely. Half under Baine, broken glass and twisted metal of what were once syringes let chemicals mix. Smoke and the smell of burning rising.
With a final, regretful, glance at Baine Odette knows she has done all she can. RJ and Odette hit the air, launching themselves from the drop pod before it is too late.
Seemingly alone, his system finally purging the sedatives, Baine sits straight up. Confused, enclosed. In a very small space. Wind rushing past him. Glancing at the source of the wind, he sees he is not alone, one man remains. The minuscule Jops jumping up and down, desperately waving towards the rip in the hull “We’ve got to get out of here. Now!”
Baine thinks languidly then replies “Slow down. I can’t understand”
“THIS! WAY!” Jops shouts and claws Baine towards the door. Baine does not resist the efforts of the minuscules man he trusts implicitly. Air greats him, open air, not the wide open starship bays they tested in. Actual open air.
The eight person squad is falling through the air now, Drop pod tumbling and spinning, empty of its cargo. Around them thousands more, falling spread eagle in X position, swarm of grey and cameo against the sky. Grav chutes kicking in. Baine plummeting past them until finally realising he has to activate the grav cute.
Below them the first sight they have ever had of another planet. The first sight of a non penal world.
Below them, grey clouds and rocky mounds. Vast expanses of jungle. Vaster than any experienced.
Below them, only war.
Father Deimos lands first, robes billowing, nestled in the grav chutes waves, sinking gently to a halt. Hans Loksion hits the ground next, rolling on impact, back up, las carbine snapping ready, iron sights surveying the LZ, a dust plume billows over them as Baine impacts with the ground, slamming to one knee, fist impacting floor. One by one the other crew, Jool, Stoo, RJ, and Jops fall after them setting up a perimeter. Structures, fingers to the sky reach up around them, thousands of floors high. Imperial runes from across the ages emblazoned hundreds of meters high upon them, the particular markings tells of the era a particular floor was built. Marks of the necropolis, the resting point for the holy martyrs of the imperium. Outgrowths of trees tangle around the structures. Stoo pulls his uniform tight, the atmosphere far more temperate than he is used to and goosebumps raise upon his flesh. Nestled within an alcove looking out upon the street, flamer ready in hand, Father Deimos glances out for any sign of danger.
Odette is missing.
Clicking the micro bead to the correct channel Deimos speaks “Medic Odette, can you read me?”
Elsewhere, Odette slumps against the trees around her, shoulder numb from impact. Her landing had been less than graceful, shoulder first to the ground, rolling with the impact to spare her partial dislocation but not bruises. Not lowering her las carbine, balanced against the tree, she flicks the micro bead to a ready position.
“I read. What is your location”
Deimos glances, looking for some useful meeting point “There’s an outcrop of trees fifty meters south of our position, we can rendezvous there, and start our crusade of flame against the xenos”
Odette looks around, at the mass of forested outcrops that litter the area and curses Deimo’s poor navigational skills. “Are the rest of you together?” she asks as she collects up her gear, tabbing from outcrop to outcrop, searching for her squad mates.
“The emperor has ensured that we land together, even the mutant filth is here” Father Deimos says
Odette can almost hear the Ogryns mocking smile across the micro bead.
At the main LZ Deimos turns to Hans Lokisson “I spy no xenos here, no sign of war. Do you see any indication the landing zone has any hostiles in the area?”
After a few minutes reconnaissance Lokisson shakes his head “None”
Nodding, Deimos returns to micro bead “Medic Odette, the LZ is clear of hostiles. You should be safe to discharge your weapon in the air to allow us to establish your location”
As he talks he brings out his rosaries and the relic finger bones his commanding officer had ordered him to remove from his weapon. Wrapping them around his las carbine’s barrel he continues. “Remember, we are out from under the eye of our warden, watched only by the god emperor himself. I expect nothing less that gratuitous violence from the lot of you”
A las shot burns through the air in the distance cutting through the tree line. “Ohh pretty”Baine mutters, watching rapt. “bright light. Bright light”
With the position of their colleague established the squad sets off quickly down the alleyways, weapons up and corners covered. Hearing them moving in the distance Odette grabs her kit bag and starts moving to meet half way, it is too open here for her liking. A few streets down she pauses, pattering of feet on the edge of her hearing. Not Ogyrn feet for sure, probably not even human. Sinking back into the undergrowth that breaks through the ground, she tries to scramble a tree that pushes through shattered concrete but its journey through the solid ground seems to have stripped it of any convenient handholds. Instead she sinks back behind the tree, cameo covered las carbine poking through. “Caution “She says sub vocal over the micro bead “something’s approaching. I’m the one behind the tree”
“Well what are you waiting for” Deimos replies” you have your carbine. Purge it from this holy world”
Odette goes silent. The movement she had heard has stilled. All of it. Peaking out from behind her cover, controlling her breathing to minimise the sound she looks for sign of any movement. Thirty seconds pass. Nothing. “I don’t know what’s approaching” She mutters in the bead “Something is. Be prepared for anything”
The main squad moves from cover to cover. Troop split between those who hold ready in cover and those sprinting over open ground to the next shelter. Half way through his sprint, Hans spies a green mass of bodies suddenly visible. Small things rising from behind broken walls and debris. Charging towards the squad, weapons readied. Halting his sprint, collapsing down to one knee, carbine braced against his shoulder Hans Lokisson locks down the trigger into the centre of the mass. Two of the small green creature snap back, dead. Another drops rolling in agony. Cross fire burst out from the tree-line as Odette spies them, a las shot transfixing another thorough the neck. Another stumbles as its kneecap disintegrates in a burst of energy.
Finish his sprint to cover Deimos slides the last of the distance behind granite pillars, leaning out, evil smile on his face as he unleashing the flamer into the alleyway. Scream come out from the midst of the flame, half seen figures staggering around in panic and pain. One falls consumed by the flame and most of the rest stagger as flame licks at their bodies. A few slugs spit out from the centre of the flame, trying to claim their assailants, most bounce harmlessly off brickwork but a single round catch Lokissons shoulder, punching clean through.
The burning greenskin’s pain does not last long, Baine, standing shoulder width apart, ripper gun braced against his body fills the alleyway with a hail of shells. By the time the barrels spin to a halt there is but a mushed green mess and a giant grin on the ogryn’s face. A non committal grunt over the micro bead from Deimos could potentially be interpreted as grudging respect for the dead the creature has inflicted.
Lifting himself from behind cover, Deimos moves amongst the faller figures, slamming the butt of his rifle upon the heads of any that could be faking their deaths whilst reciting a psalm about the Imperial Saints carving a beachhead in war out of the flesh of the fallen.
Glancing at Lokisson’s wound, Odette takes a deep breath. The wound looks pretty bad, potentially an amputation case. “ I feel fine” Hans says with a shrug “Some burning but that’s it”
“Probably shock.” Odette replies “That’s a pretty bad sign. Not much I can do with the wound in the field. I’ll try and keep it clean until we can do better”
“No really I’m f…”
Lokisson’s comment is cut off by a subhuman booming voice in the distance “Where you you, you filthy lot? Get back here before I fucking flay you”
Deimos quickly drops back into the shadows of the alcoves that line the streets. Carbine up and ready. Silently he motions Lokisson to an area opposite, but forwards slightly to prevent crossed fire arc.
Not catching the attempt to set up an ambush Baine stands right in the middle of the street, Ripper Gun ready, impromptu bait for the trap.
“Fuck. Mutants messed up. Wait for the greenskin to go for him and when it does we both spray it in the back” Deimos mutters to Lokisson.
The thumping of feet comes closer, giant slabs of meat that carry bulk and muscle. A seven foot, tusk toothed beast of muscle steps amidst the hidden guardsmen “Where the fuck are you, useless pieces of shite” it booms, head swivelling round and searching with beady eyes for its lost gretchen.
“Right. I’ve had enough of you. I’ll just say I killed you all” As it finishing saying that it steps into the clearing, spying the mess of burnt and shattered greenskins. The Ogryn right in front of it.
“NOW!” Lokisson mutters over the microbead and two las carbines open up at point blank range into the massive greenskins back. The first rounds rake its leg, tearing out chunks of flesh and muscle, the guns’ kick pull them upwards the energy heating the beast’s armour until it bursts into flames, the last rounds scorching its skull, stunning it and pitching it forwards into the waiting Ogryns burst from its Ripper gun.
Seeing the beast, somehow still alive, grunting in pain and lifting itself from the ground, Lokisson unslings his flamer and piles the flame on the enemy as Father Deimos approaches pulling the activation cord on his chainblade, smoke and noise pouring out as it roars to life. A single swing takes the creature’s head from its body and finally the creature lies still. A roar of victory hits the air, Deimos head back and shouting to the sky with the thrill of the kill.
Once the have secured the combat zone Lokisson moves across the bodies, securing firearms and ammo and tossing the bodies onto the burning pyre the flamer has created. The weapons are odd, slug throwers, but the construction just doesn’t look like they should even work. Baine lifts a large chopper from the large greenskins body, hefts it with a smile and slings it across its back. Once they have finished they turn to see Father Deimos, the Xenos’ head burning and impaled upon a staff, an impromptu banner for the shock squad.
“The xenos filth said he would tell the others” Deimos says “He came from that direction, so in that direction there will be more to burn”
They follow the trail for about a hundred meters before it gets lost within the looming architecture that surrounds them. Deciding a higher vantage point may allow them to reappraise the situation Deimos asks Baine to watch the entranceway while Lokisson and he manoeuvre up the the buildings.
Using bags weighed down with rocks, the two toss an impromptu trap activator down the corridors while they shelter in cover. Aware that any of rooms could be layered with trip wires. The area is clear however and they make prompt progress up the first six floors of dank and musty corridors.
The rooms are crypt like and cold, dusty nooks and crannies leaving many possible ambush points as they move through the domed gothic rooms. Lokisson glances down at the floor, some broken stone shards have been shifted to conceal spent food tins. Residue of human habitat most likely. Seeing no evidence of humans themselves, they move out to an balcony, cherubim hanging from above, and testimonies to the imperial saints etched into the sun bleached stone.
The forest opens up below them into a massive expanse of jungle. Towards the rising sun they can see an area, lit by a massive blaze, and a set of smoke belching wheeled machinery tearing a swath through the jungle as it heads towards the flame, where sounds of fighting can be heard.
Deimos looks to Loksion “The battle continues without us, shall we head for the battle or the machinery do you think?”
“May be worth heading to the machine as they are closer” Lokisson replies.
Meanwhile, downstairs in the street the Ogryn stands guard while his comrade Jops bitches about the recent events.
“What the hell was that? What was that? Drop pods exploding! They can’t expect us to work in something like that. Emperor on the throne this is fucked up. Who the hell is in charge here anyway!”
“Never liked drop pods anyway “Baine replies
“Yeah, well, but that’s just your…condition”
“Never trust dark holes”
“Yeah, well they at least shouldn’t blow up on us” Jops says
“Baine shrugs “I woke up. You shoved me out the door. Still don’t know how we got here”
Jops muses a second “It was all nice and relaxed. Honest”
Baine pauses, spying something unusual at the edge of his sight. An old lady, half crouched below the banners hanging down marked with flickering hologlyphs, hand partially extended in wave. Trying, simultaneously, to be noticed and yet hidden.
With a big teethy grin the Ogryn waves back, the old lady flinching away back into her cover. After a few moments her head pokes out again
“Are we safe now? Have you killed them?”
“The xenos. The greenskins. Alien scum”
“We killed them” Baine says
“All of them?” The lady says, incredulous.
“You have to help us then! Do you have any food? We have refugees from the city, Xenos have overrun it. Do you know anywhere safe for them”
“Dunno. We’re new here” Baine rummages through his bag and offer a ration pack, gratefully received.
“Is there anyone else we can talk to”
“Yeah. Loony priest is upstairs. Through door way , up the stairs.”
“Thanks” the lady says, somewhat warily at the mention of “Loony priest “, as she starts to hobble to the door she pauses again
“I’m Yutter. Yuttel Val”