Introduction to Blood Knife
If you have read my other stories, there are plenty of blue skinned people falling in love, old people reminiscing about the good old days when they were fire warriors, or little Tau children exploring the world around them; but this isn’t one of those stories. This is instead my first real “honest-to-gawd” Warhammer 40k shoot’em up! It will have no redeeming value, other than excessive amounts of pulse carbine fire and exploding photon grenades. Hopefully, it will have enough character and plot development not to be just “bolter porn”. (Let me know if it does will you?) Oh, and as to plot, I have no idea in h’kek’an where this story is going! I’ll go with it as a long as I’m interested in it; and when I finally get bored with it, I’ll shut it down with some deus ex machina or another. Hey, but don't whine when it happens, because I warned you about ahead of time! So grab your popcorn and favourite soft drink, or if you prefer, your favourite order of sushi from ‘Happy Tau Sushi’ and bottle of ky’husa; and then sit back and enjoy this mindless entertainment. GO BLUESKINS!
1: Fog and Fire
‘In the name of the Holy Emperor of Mankind I call down the wrath of his glorious Golden Throne! By thy Holy Name let your enemies be destroyed and thy servants saved! I call upon thee O Holy Emperor save us!’ shouted Inquisitor O’Diarmada, reeling unsteadily on his feet and waving his near empty bolter at the fog.
The dense mist reeks of promethium and burning flesh. Here and there bodies still smoulder, while others are nothing but bits of charred flesh and bone. Staggering backwards the Inquisitor fires wildly into the fog, trying to keep at bay the unseen servants of the Blood god. But the fog cloaks everything and to his his horror and despair, he only finds more blasted bodies of Crusaders and Sororitas, their torn and leaking flesh wet with blood.
‘Brothers! Sisters! If you can follow the sound of my voice come to me Inquisitor O’Diarmada! Seek me out! Follow the sound of my voice. The Inquisitor makes his way up the slight incline of the hill to a burning Chimera transport, and scrounging among the dead finds one clip more for his now empty bolter. He drops the empty clip and slams home the full clip one. He reeks of blood, sweat, and cordite, his muscles ache and bur; while his lungs heave with the heavy damp air and dense smoke. Then there is a shout.
‘Inquisitor keep shouting we can hear you! We are brother Crusaders. Keep shouting!’
‘In his holy name some have survived!’ exclaims the Inquisitor to himself wiping the sweat and blood from his mahogany face. ‘Here I am! Come to the sound of my voice!’
There are more shouts and somewhere to his left comes through the fog two Sororitas helping a third wounded sister.
‘Here I am! Come this way!’ he shouts back.
‘Inquisitor there is a holy priest not too far behind us, but we know not where he is?’ shouts the sister leading the other two.
O’Diarmada still shouting rushes forward and helps with the wounded Sister of Battle, but once they are at the Chimera, they hear the shouts of the Crusaders. Not more than ten yards away comes a small party of four brothers.
‘We can see you Inquisitor!’ shouts one of them, but at that moment dark shadows leap at them from the fog.
O’Diarmada and one of the Sisters rushes forward with their chainsword drawn. The Crusaders were overwhelmed by things no longer human. The naked bodies of these blood creatures were defaced with the sigil of the Khorne, and they screamed unearthly cries to the Blood god. With preternatural strength they slash and stab at the armoured men with knifes, bayonets, and sharpened spades. Swinging wildly they throw themselves at the party, heedlessly for their own safety; and are hacked down in sprays of red ichor and gore. Inquisitor O’Diarmada’s chainsword liquefying three of them at one go. Decapitated heads and limbs are flung into the air; yet more and more of the savage creatures arrive. But these new creatures are the possessed, with blood gushing from their eyes and mouths, teeth sharpened like razors, and claws for hands. With only their bodies as weapons, the creatures attack by grabbing, clawing, and biting.
The Inquisitor slashes and cuts, laying low one possessed creature after another; but a Crusader has his arm torn off, and as he falls to the ground screaming, the living flesh of his stump is eaten by the creatures. Another Crusader falls and is torn apart by claw and teeth, with great chunks of his face are being ripped off and devoured whole. The two fate less men are then set upon by the remaining blood seeking creatures.
‘Leave them! Fall back with me!’ shouts the Inquisitor and the survivors make their way back to the Chimera.
‘Right with you!’ shouts one of the brothers as he and the remaining Crusader heave frag grenades into the feasting monsters. The brilliant flash of the detonation illuminating the parts of bodies being tossed into the air.
Once back to the Chimera, the sister who stayed back to look after her wounded companion says, ‘Inquisitor, we’ve lost Sister Torquemada.’ She points to the now deceased Sororitas lying pale on the ground.
‘May the Emperor give her peace,’ he replies laying a gentle hand on the dead young woman
‘Inquisitor…I…am…’ says one Sororitas who had fought, but then she falls back against the transport and slides to the ground.
‘Lo, let us go to her!’ shouts the Inquisitor to her fellow Sororitas, as the two rushes to her side. They examine her and discover she is sorely wounded. Her face has gone pale and sweating profusely.
‘Sister Rasputina has a small blade still impaled in her left side!’ said the other Soroitas.
‘Look to her wounds then sister,’ answers O’Diarmada, but then to Rasputina adds, ‘Have faith sister, for this day we shall not die! The Emperor wills it!’
‘What…about…Father Gheorghe? He’s…just…over there?’ asks Rasputina her pointing into the fog.
‘Have no fear for him, for I will go get him. Remember this that day we-shall-not-die! The Emperor protects us!’
Just then there is a loud “kerchunk” sound as a bolter round hits one of the Crusaders in the head. The body drops to the ground next to O’Diarmada.
Las rounds pop and flash against the metal hull of the Chimera, and as the survivors fling themselves to the ground, streaks of pink tracer rounds fly in all directions. Far off down the hill they see the golden muzzle flash of bolters, and the thin beams of green of lasguns.
‘Don’t fire back, save your ammunition! Just stay low for now, they’re just shooting at the fires. Here help me stack the bodies. We…can…make some cover.’ The three able bodied survivors now pull and drag the corpses of the dead Sister and Crusader in front of them. Then as they’re dragging more bodies on top those, they hear in the distance.
‘The Emperor protect us! In his holy name I banish you back to the warp!’
‘It’s Father Gheorghe!’ shouts the Sister.
‘Can’t get him now! Keep stacking bodies,’ answers the Inquisitor.
‘The Emperor protect us! In his holy name…’
‘That’s enough! Now grab whatever ammunition you can find and stay low!’
As the three now scour the dead for grenades and clips they once again hear Father Gheorghe.
‘The Emperor protect us! The Emperor protect us!’
‘Inquisitor he’s closer now,’ says the Sister.
‘Alright, I’ll go get him. The two of go check on the wounded Sister, but stay down.’
Brushing his dreadlocks from his face and then pulling down tight his wide brimmed hat, Inquisitor O’Diarmada now hoists his bolter, moving gingerly over the fallen bodies of friend and fiend alike.
Making his way through the fog O’Diarmada followed the sound of the sound of Father Gheorghe’s voice.
‘The Emperor protect us! In his holy name I banish you…’ the voice of preacher seemed so close that he had to be right on top of him; when suddenly he sees the crazed old cleric in front of him.
Father Gheorghe was holding up his book of scripture and shouting, ‘In the Holy Emperor’s name I defy you minions of darkness! I condemn you to the outer darkness! I banish you back to the formless world of the immaterium!’
Father Gheorghe! It’s me Inquisitor O’Diarmada!’
‘Where are you Inquisitor that I can hear you clearly?!’
‘Behind you,’ answered O’Diarmada, but then the codex burst into flames, when several lasrounds simultaneously hit its open pages. The Inquisitor grabbed the preacher shouting ‘Get down Father!’
The two tumbled together and lying on the ground, the old cleric smiled at O’Diarmada saying, ‘Kokumo Raijin your black face is the finest salve to a lost soul! And the best thing I’ve seen all day! May the Emperor preserve us!’
‘May he preserve us Father!’ answered the Inquisitor smiling back.
Then from above them came the spitting roar of a chainsword, followed by its throbbing pulse of its motor. The two men looked up and saw standing before, a naked Sister of Repentia with a juddering Eviscerator in both hands. But she was no longer imbued with the faith in the Emperor! The holy aquila on her red mask was defaced with the icon of the Blood god, and her slashed and scarred body now carried the runes of his dark power. A belt of human hands hung around her waist, and her eyes glowed red with the fire of the Blood Throne. She lifted her roaring Eviscerator over her head at the same time O’Diarmada swung around his bolter. But before she could strike, or he fire, she exploded in a mass blue-white light.
A rain of sizzling blue-white light had struck the renegade Sister Repentia, causing her body to explode and throw fragments of flesh in all directions. The blue-white pulses came from a dark shape hovering in the air above the two men; but it then it sped down hill disappearing into the fog. O’Diarmada and Gheorghe looked at each other, but now from their right came more blue-white flashes; while from their left came even more. Down the hill they could see flashes of blue-white flashing from dark shapes hanging in the air. Immediately there were deafening explosions and flashes of brilliant iridescent light. The two men covered their ears and shut their eye to this unholy terrible din. The explosions and shooting now moved farther off down the hill, only the strobe-like effect of the explosions in the fog, told that there was still fighting going on.
Then it was all over – silence.
‘The Emperor has saved us Gheorghe!’ said O’Diarmada.
‘But Kokumo Raijin that unholy fire came from a xenos abomination.’
O’Diarmada sat up listening to the distant silence and replied, ‘I know.’
The Inquisitor then got to his feet and helped his friend stand up saying, ‘But if it is the will of the Emperor that we be saved by xenos, then it is his will Father.’
There was a shout from the Crusader and the Soroitas, ‘Are you alright Inquisitor? We are all here!’
‘Yes, we are both here! Father Gheorghe and I have both survived!’ he shouted back.
The sound of movement came from down the hill, and turning around O’Diarmada saw grey figures moving towards them. The cleric made for his chainsword, but the Inquisitor stopped him saying, ‘Remember the Emperor’s will Father.’
Three ghostly figures approached them, their armour somehow blending in uncannily with the grey-brown fog, even as they moved toward the two of them. The figures stopped a metre away from the Inquisitor and the cleric; and now there was no doubt that they were xenos. These xenos soldiers wore narrow faced helmets with a long antennas attached to the right side. All three were fully armoured above the wait, but only greaves on their hoofed feet; but standing still they now seemed almost to vanish, becoming like the fog itself. All three then tapped controls on their right fore wrists, and their armour darkened immediately making them easier to see.
‘Who are you xenos?’ requested the Inquisitor in a loud voice.
The centre alien turned its vertical tandem lenses towards the Inquisitor, and in an artificial feminine voice said, ‘Who are you gue’la?’