After the dust had settled and the tattered group had hobbled our way back to our hole, a silent consensus to lay low for a bit had been reached. Nobody was interested in heading out with the reports of terrorist attacks on the Library spreading like the fire caused by the very same bombing. Some lost themselves for a time in what alcohol remaining, others in their study and research trying to make connections. I busied myself with my business. A half shipment of arms gathering dust in this container and nobody to pass them off to. If I didn’t get rid of them soon there would be no way for me to purchase passage of this rock for myself, let alone the others who I admittedly owe a bit of due. If my brother were in fact trying to be rid of me than the news of my death would certainly knock him off of my trail, but for how long? Eventually he would learn of my refusal to die. If he were really connected with the old man the others are after than he might already know, and blowing up buildings is high profile. All this is plenty of reason to try and procure some thrones as to not rely on the family allowance account. That would draw him to me like filings to a magnet. I had already gotten one good crew slaughtered for underestimating my brother, and I wouldn’t be making the same mistake twice.
The heavies finished loading up one final box of arms. If nothing else I could be rid of the blasted Mordian 13th munitions. Perhaps some of my ill luck would leave with them. I clutched my lucky bolt casing as I assessed my wares, marking which are to be taken and which are to stay. I removed one of the five large Assault Cannons from their housing and set it aside. Ajax had shown interest in one of those and they were technically meant for him in the first place anyways. I had just sent out the laborers when Roddy and Karzak came together with news. I moved to hear from them about what was happening. Roddy’s urchins had turned up a bit of useful information, having learned of and followed a man who seemed to know something of the relic Karzak and the others were after. This relic was somehow associated with my brother and I damned well wanted to know how. If it was something my brother wanted I meant to do everything in my power to make sure he didn’t get it.
I snatched up my overcoat and fell in behind the others. The man we were investigating was some kind of confessor living down on one of the lower levels of the hive near the waterfront and apparently operating some sort of tattoo parish. I could never quite get a read on the members of the Ecclesiarchy. They either gilded their pockets with thrones or abstained from any form of indulgence, and it was near impossible to tell which was which until after you already offered the bribe. I didn’t think I would be the one greasing the wheels of this meeting, and I expressed as much to Karzak and Roddy as we boarded the lift down to the lower levels. The lift shuddered to a halt and we began weaving our way towards the location given to us for this Confessor’s shop. We wound through the roughly assembled stalls and tents until we found it, Confessions of Skin. It didn’t look like much, but we were in one of the deeper levels of the hive; I had not been expecting much.
We stalled a little bit to make sure that we would be the only ones in his tent, procuring a pair of masks from an old woman who had a stall across the way from his. When we finally stepped into the tent a small chime of a bell announced our presence. I closed the wooden door behind us and propped myself against it as I watched Roddy circle through the tent, scanning with his practiced eyes. The man appeared from a back section of the tent and greeted us, and this is when Karzak got down to business. I kept an eye on him, not fully trusting a man who had suddenly popped up with convenient information on the item we had been searching for. It seemed a bit too easy, but Karzak forded ahead. He blatantly asked questions and gave up far too information, but I kept silent and simply watched, ready to jump in should the need arise. It was right then that someone pounded on the door, and I leapt out of the way as I heard one person give a command to break the door down. My Carnodon Hand Cannon was already in my hand without a thought, and leveled at head height as a group of thugs barged through the portal. One turned to face me and began to lift his weapon even with my pistol leveled at his face, but fortunately the Confessor demanded that everyone lower their weapons. I re-holstered my pistol and pulled my over coat forward to show no ill will towards the thugs. The leader of the group apparently had some issue with the preacher refusing to give her boys ganger tattoos and was planning on teaching him a lesson, but fortunately for them the preacher talked her down and they left without too much trouble. I would not have taken pleasure in killing someone who stands no chance against me, let alone the fact that he was just doing what he was told, but I would have had they pursued the matter.
Karzak and the preacher seemed to come to an impasse, so we stepped outside for a moment to discuss our options. The little man wanted to bring this preacher back to our safe house and keep him there. That just did not seem like a good idea. If he did have some connection or some ulterior motives then we would be leading him right to our base of operations with no options for getting the warp out of there. Throne, this man could be working for my brother or another inquisitor who would not be so lenient on my crimes. It seemed like a recipe for bad news to me, but Karzak was insistent. We stepped back into the tent to collect the man to find that he had already been backing up his belongings, which mostly consisted of books, and was just finishing putting some things together to make ready to leave. We gave him our verdict and he seemed fine with that, scooping up his finely crafted cane and heading out the door to possibly sell the rest of his belongings which he no longer needed. Just as he stepped out the door, we heard the spitting roar of a heavy stubber and the solid thump of the shots as they tore through wood, plascrete, and any bystanders who were unfortunate enough to be in the way. I quickly fell into a low squat, my pistols once again finding their way to my hands. I could see fragments of wood splintering off as the bullets ripped off pieces of the door and decided quickly that it would not be a very healthy exit. Thinking quickly I grabbed the bottom edge of the canvas tent and pulled it up roughtly, tearing a portion of it before stepping out behind the small wood and plasteel shanty which was occupying the space next to it. Karzak followed behind me as well as Roddy, and I peered out around the corner to get a gauge of the situation. There was a large man, covered from head to foot in carapace armor and wielding a large heavy stubber with no distinguishing marks or patter that could be recognized, but it did appear to be setup with a chain feed leading to a backpack. He wouldn’t be running out of ammo any time soon. The main thing that I noticed was the large inquisitorial “I” marking the entire front of his helmet. It wasn’t bad enough working with the inquisition, now another one of them was trying to kill us.
I squeezed off a couple of shots around the corner, trying to stay out of the line of fire as he sprayed slugs into the quickly dispersing crowd and surrounding buildings. I heard roddy behind me kicking into the shanty we were covering behind and Karzak began to focus intently on the man as he peered around the corner as well. The stubber whirred to a halt and with a roar the man dropped it and pulled out a large two handed sword which blazed to life with a blue glow as he rushed towards the small figure of Karzak who had stepped out from behind the building. I leapt out behind Karzak, lining up a shot and planting a slug in the forehead of the man’s helmet just as sickly blue lightning leapt from the small man’s hands to course over our threat’s body. I had seen Karzak wield this power before, but it was still unsettling. I could not be sure, but I could have sworn that I saw what looked like blood oozing from the nearby wooden wall, but perhaps it was just my imagination. That was when the preacher rushed past me towards the man, pulling a deadly thin blade from within his cane, and this blade too was quickly enveloped by a power field. He thrust the thin blade, the power field easily ripping through the armor protecting the man’s face and the point ripped across the man’s field of vision, doing damage I could not possibly comprehend. The mans grip slipped and his next swing went wild, embedding the sword in the wall as the power field was switched off. The blade seemed ruined. One final shot and the man was down, slumped on the ground and bleeding out. The preacher began moving around and saying prayers over the bodies of the people who had been caught in the crossfire, but I quickly gathered up the heavy stubber and moved over to the body. If nothing else I could get some spare parts from his weapons. Attached to his rig was what looked like a large amount of explosives and they seemed to be activated. I yelled to the others, grabbing them and running as the body burst into flames. The preacher’s prayers would have to be cut short. We needed to leave quickly before we received any more unwanted attention. When we had gotten a good distance from the comotion, we stopped and requested that the confessor submit to having his eyes covered as we took him to our safe house, not wanting to compromise our whereabouts. He agreed and we began our journey back to the safe house.
I ran ahead, not wanting to leave any arms there just in case we were compromised, and gathered what heavy lifters were left to pack up the rest of the arms store and move them to Skully’s warehouse. I would know that they could be safe there.