To Error is Human

Hello.......

“Hello…. Is this thing on?… Hey Zelf Kain! What is the blinking light? Is it on?”

In the distance you hear “Its fine I have it going for you Zek now all you have to do is talk and when you’re done hit the blue button!”

“Oh ok………….. Hello I am Zek and this is a oddeo record of my voice on a deta … data pad. I was told that this will be a journal like my Zelf…errr boss Kain has but since he does not have time to teach me to write or read this thing will just record my voice…… I have been told I have a very nice voice but don’t say things 100% right…or ….correct….hmmmm!”……………………static………………………. static …………………………………………

“…okay but I’m very busy right now and don’t have time to help you with this, Zek. So I really need you to stop playing with the buttons, okay?”

“Yes Zelf, I’z sorry!”

“Okay then so remember, when you’re done, as in done talking…. Look at me Zek.…..when you’re done recording your voice hit the blue button, okay?”

“Yes Zelf…oh…oh I have one last question!?”

“(sigh) Yes Zek?”

“Why dark hair girl when it a Tuesday?”

“Good bye Zek!”

“Okay you have good time den, Zelf. Okay I’m recording again. I had issue with record slate but we are recordin again. I was going to say something but forgot what it is…. hmmmm…. Oh yes that is right I am suppose to talk about my life….. well Zek’s life is…. is ahhhhh…. is good! I have Mercenary License see…. oh you can’t see that right this oddeo not veedeo… I work for Adamenta Kain he is my boss. I say Zelf because that mean the same thing from where I are….am from, okay….. So…today I got on a Qual Ship.. I mean Big Ship with….boss and Equitius… Equitius is Bosses other body guard and he is also very nice and clean but has a mean side too… but not to me or boss.. just other people… Oh oh…reminds me be right back I have to go into basement….(stomping>….….(long pause)….(stomping)….I be right back….(stomping)….….(long pause)……(very soft sound of a woman moaning in the back ground and a rhythmic squeaking noise)….(stomping)….Okay I back but have to go. Later I tell you about ship, law man, bar fight, house, dead people Zek found, ah….bug I saw…..ahh…oh and how Zek just found out he may have to go back to fighting green skins… oh those what we call Orks if you didn’t know Okay I have to go now bye bye".….(stomping)….….(long pause)……..(a muffled sound of a woman crying out “Oh Adamenta” and a rhythmic squeaking noise that just stops)….(long pause)….(a door opening and a voice in the distance saying “Do you want some water?…. Okay I’ll be right back!” followed by footsteps)….

“Damn it he left this on. ZEK!!….. ZEK!!!….. Where the hell is he?.…IM TURNING THIS OFF, ZEK!!!”

END RECORDING…

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It builds up in me again

“Months ago I would have told you I was happy with my life, helping those in need on Bith, all the while studying my tome and seeing where to go next with my mission. But now….. now I feel sickened… sickened with the madness that has become my inner fear and hatred for someone I trusted and looked up to for years. Someone that I held honor for above even my own family, but have found that I am just a tool and held in the same regards in the eyes of my mentor. I am the reason that my new found friends are in danger. Had I not that day on Bith went with them to that library, Dagger would not of ever been able to touch their lives in the way he has. I have been blinded, blinded by the mission and my master. Haha “Master” I knew in the end I would just be a slave again! But wait I’m not fully a slave I still have my will, and I’m not some reprogrammed human like he did with Sister Claire or Gibson Green. Poor souls they are…. Claire finding out she is just a clone and Green just a puppet. For sure Claire may not have ever known the true if I was around but Green, would he have been better off dead if Dagger had not slithered into his life? And what of Creed what may have Dagger done to him? And after what we all have just found no one is safe! NO….I must not think of the past in this way and I must focus on the future. Damn Dagger and damn the Tarren’Ka prophecy just as I have been tricked into being damned myself. Although damned and tricked into being what I am, there is still no going back, not even to my home……by the Emperor…. home…. my family is gone…. Baris is no more…. Damn Skain as well then!! I will not faultier and will not allow others to fall into the same darkness. The sins placed before me I have put on my flesh, and I will carry them with me until the day I die for the God Emperor, for my family, and for my new family! My anger is my vengeance and even if I have nothing, even my soul, I can still offer my life! A Sin Eater I was made so a Sin Eater I will be!”

Just then a explosion happens, crumbling parts of the hive. ExDrakas now’s that many innocent people just died from it, he also knows it was caused by Dagger to cover up his dirty little secert.

“Coming to collect your sins soon Dagger!”

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Addressing the Regiment

Striding through the walkways of the Devil’s Due, Ajax and Kade parted the ocean of newly acquired workforce around them, headed to the gathered troops in the assembly area. An Imperial Colonel and the ship’s Captain respectively, drew cries of, “officers on deck,” followed by the clatter of tools and plates.

Kade, clad in his black layered carapace armor and furred cape, nodded to each group of saluting workers. His trademark Tri-Lock bolter pistols holstered at his sides. Next to him trod the armored figure of Ajax, whose armor’s polished cleanliness was in very stark contrast to the dirty grim encrusted face, which nodded in time with the Captain’s. The helmet rested in his left hand and a large tome dangled by a chain from his belt.

The pair marched down the long winding corridors in silence, until they came to a stop in front of a closed hatch. The words ‘firing range,’ stenciled above the door way. Kade looked up at his power armored companion, “no better time the present.”

Ajax nodded, “Emperor, protect us.”

With a chuckle, Kade activated the door’s opening mechanism. The familiar shout of, “officers on deck,” reverberated up and down the immense section of ship. A single slam of boot heels and rifle butts drowned out the echoing command. A smirk crossed Ajax’s face as he and the captain crossed the room to the front. Ajax watched the platoons out of the corner or his eyes, never turning to look. ‘They are well drilled, but too green. Hex and I will have to work double time to get them up to fighting strength.’ Thought Ajax.

Hex and her adjunct vox-master Major Drake stood at attention as they approached. Hex officer’s uniform displaying proudly the rankings of a Lieutenant Colonel, several campaign badges, and multiple metals of valor. Her years of fighting experience and the trust the men have in her, will be a great aid in getting these boys in shape. Assuming Kade can leave her alone to let her do her duties that is. The man to her side seemed a bit too small for his equipment as the master vox caster appeared to envelop his body. Yet even though he was outsized, he did not waiver in his salute or cringe from exertion.

Kade was a good man, perhaps a bit on the crooked side, but one of the few remaining individuals that Ajax could turn to. He was someone untouched by the underhanded Inquisitor Dagger, and in that they shared a commonality. Though born worlds apart, the months under Inquisitorial Duty had brought them to trust one another.

Just a few feet from Hex, Ajax and Kade came to a halt saluting the Lieutenant Colonel and Major, before turning to face their assembled audience of over 2000. The majority of the current workers and security forces had been pulled from the local Imperial Guard forces. Many of which made requests for positions in security.

Few of them however, had been in space beyond simple the transition between planets, and fewer still had combat experience in it. With Kade’s assistance, Hex and Ajax would run mach battles across different parts of the ship. That would simulate the tight confines of ship combat.

Kade and Ajax saluted the mass of soldiers standing before them. Hex, lifting the nearby vox-reciever, shouted “Regiment! Parade, rest!” The men simultaneously shifted into a more comfortable stance, using their gun to aid standing. It looked a bit odd to Ajax, but putting it off as other world military custom. Their timing was spot on however, and if Hex was to blame for it, she’ll deserve congratulations.

Dropping his salute Ajax gave a Kade a slight nod. With a smirk Kade stepped forward, and took the outstretched vox-reciever. With the wit and finesse of a veteran salesman, Kade whipped up the spirits of the men. Ajax stood silently and listened to Kade’s carefully played words. As inspiring and profound as Ajax had become, Kade’s silver tongue could run laps around him.

Kade finished his speech and a cheer burst from the soldiers. As the sergeants became choking out the revelry, Ajax took the receiver. “Wonderful speech my friend.”

“It better have been. I had to spend the whole trip here from the bridge, just coming up with it.” The two chuckled as Kade retreated to his post.

Clad in white power armor that glistened in the ship light, Ajax panned across the mass. He gently set his ceramite helmet upon the stand behind which he stood. “Men of the Devil’s Due. I, as you know, am Colonel Ajax, and although I recognize only a few among you. I will make it my duty to learn of each and every soldier that is under my command. To the point were I know you by face.”

“We are warriors of the Emperor and we are his mailed fist. I have fought on more battlefields and planets then I care to count. I have battled xenos, heretics, and witches. The Emperor has been my light and my guide. He has seen me through many a battle in which many good men have died. He to will see you through the battles you will fight in his name!”

“Hate is my sword and faith my shield. Know these words and live by them! Give no quarter for heretic or xenos, for doing so will only bring about ruin. Take the word of the Emperor to heart. Join me in prayer.” Returning the receiver and gripping the tome that hung to his side, Ajax opened it with practiced grace and held it face up to the heavens as though in offering. Ajax bowed his head as he spoke.

Although the tome was thrice the size of his hand, the power armor carried it as though it was nothing.

“Oh eternal Emperor,
who alone watches us,
and rules the tides and storms,
be compassionate to your servants,
preserve us from the perils of the warp,
that we may be safeguard to the domain of men!”

His unassisted voice bellowed out across the sea of bowed helmets.

After a moment of internal prayer Ajax returned the book to his side and took the receiver. “Amen.” A smattering of ‘amens,’ filtered up to him as he stood silently until most everyone had finished. “You are warriors of mankind and you are blessed by His vigil. The task ahead of all of us will be a difficult one and you’re skills and faith will be put to the test. Enemies of the emperor have infiltrated the Hive World of Scintilla. Their presence on such a world could wreck havoc among the population of not only that world but all surrounding systems. The Emperor is watching over us even as we speak. The traitor’s ship has been captured by local PDF forces. If your faith is strong all of you will see through this crisis that we face.”

Forming the Aquila across his chest and bowing towards the troops, “The Emperor protects!” The regiment returned the gesture as one.

Without much more formality Ajax returned to Kade, helmet in hand. As the two began to leave he motioned for Hex to follow. There’s much they needed to do.

“Get them back on training schedule, Major,” said Hex as she turned to follow Kade and Ajax.

“Should we tell the troops, that the ship had already made planet fall?” Kade questioned.

Ajax shook his head, “no, they’ll need their zeal. I’ll inform the officers of that fact and we’ll have to deal with it accordingly. How long will it take for you to acquire additional weaponry for the men? I know of some men that I can form into strike teams.”

“Not too long, I just have to make contact with the family and transfer the appropriate funds. Then it’s just a matter of delivery.”

“Excellent, lets hope it’s as easy as you make it sound. Hex, follow me we’ve some soldiers to train and plans to attend to.”

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Eternal Glory

Acolyte Hex report Ajax barked into the vox as the last of the kill team took their respected positions on the Valkyrie. A few moments went by and the sounds of the Valkyrie’s engines started with a loud roar, the Machine spirit seemingly ready to eradicate heretics just as much as the joint inquisitorial kill team letting them know its anticipation with a steady hum as the engines RPM started to steady. The only one not on the edge of their seat with anticipation was the pilot named Jax all of the acolytes could sense a steady unnerving feeling emanating from the cockpit. Their mission was simple, they would enter the “Son’s of Sect” compound through a maintenance hatch and it was up to Jax to pilot the Valkyrie through anti air fire and intense ground fighting to hot drop them onto the roof of what seemed from aerial photos to be the command center. From there the Kill team codenamed “The First” would enter the facility and locate and assassinate an inquisitor who would be Denounced, judged and executed by their hands. As waiting for a Formal denouncement only would allow this vile heretic to escape into the hands of the Archenemy and further his heretical agenda unhindered..

The vox cracked on colonial Hex reporting, artillery arriving, fire and ice squads ready, Emperors Fist in position. 30 seconds till operation Eternal Glory has Green Light – Over
Eternal Glory has Green Light – Over
Ajax turns his head towards Templar Karzak Tel’i who had been granted full command of the mission, without a word Karzak gives Ajax a nod to give the order.
This is inquisitorial agent Ajax, Operation Eternal Glory is a Go, repeat Eternal Glory is a Go, You know your mission, the Archenemy will put up a fight, but do not allow those heretics any mercy and may the Emperor be with you.
While Ajax did not have time to plan any sort of rallying speech he had a air of authority that even saying something that simple over a vox channel to the tank crews that lay waiting for the order to attack was enough for most to make a rallying cry to the emperor and charge forth…and “most” was all the kill team needed for a diversion into the compound.
Karzak felt he had chosen correctly to have Ajax as his strategic commander to the ground troops, as while Hex seemed to be just as capable as Ajax in a commanding role such as this; Karzak felt he would rather not have a soon to be Orphan in control of the planets PDF forces, as a excommunicated acolyte commanding a baneblade with nothing to lose could cause a serious headache to Karzak’s Kill Team.

What in the Thrones name is that? Kade’s voice choking as he spat out his words, all spotted the giant beast standing in front and in all respects towering the compound. Karzak could feel the warp taint emanating off of the creature.
A Keeper of Secrets ExDrakas spoke with a sense of certainty that caused Karzak to wonder just how much of daemon kind was ExDrakas’s mind privy to.
Now was not the time however to question the Claric’s knowledge of such things as a much more important task was at hand, the Daemon had not attempted to intercept the Valkyrie and they soon were above the drop zone.
Emperor be with you Jax spoke as the hatches slid open and the kill team repelled to the complex below.

The First had one chance at this and they knew failure was not an option. They also knew they were guided by the Emperor light and so failure was not even possible.

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Wrath of the Emperor

“Emperor grant me the strength to see me through this battle. May the heretics quiver in the presence of your most Holy Name. See me through this black sea of chaos and into the warm glow of your golden radiance. I am your weapon.” Claire whispered the silent prayer to herself as the kill team circled around the glowing hole that had just melted through the upper floor of the space station. From here they would descend into the viper’s nest.

A volley of gun fire followed the drop of the metal plating. Of course, with the aid of a few grenades the opposition was quieted. The first to plummet into the fray was Kade, the captain whose ship was stolen and of which was their current target.

“Emperor protect us…” Claire muttered under her breath as she prepared to descend.
Raising from her crouched position, Claire swung her Eviscerator in front of her, her gloved hands gripping the steal handle, one hand resting on the start switch. A few blasts from Kade’s pistols told her there were still enemies below. Peering below she sighted her target, a man close to the back wall.

Having been given the go ahead to descend, Claire stepped forward and hopped into the hole. As she began her fall, Sister Claire brought her weapon to life. The motor roared like a ferocious beast and a puff of smoke escaped the exhaust pipes. The triple chain blades spun at a dizzying pace, becoming nothing but a blur as she revved the engine to full power.

As she landed on the metal floor beneath, her armor let out its metallic cry as she folded in upon herself, bending her knees to absorb the impact of her direct fall. Then it happened, in the blink of eye she sprung into action. Done in one fluid movement, Claire rose upward on one leg, keeping the other close to the ground to support her body as she heaved the massive tank buster upward at an angle.

Spinning, biting teeth met with armor, the grinding noise was soon replaced by the sickening sound of the Eviscerator’s teeth biting into flesh and bone. A gory fountain of blood and flesh erupted from the enemies body as Claire pushed forward, cleaving a vicious line across the man’s body. With two of the chain’s pulling upward and the middle chain pulling downward, the massive chainsaw dug its way through the body, as though it had a bloodthirsty life of its own seeking the man’s heart.

Finally the resistance of the enemies body ended as the Eviscerator tore through the other side, a final shower of blood spraying every which way and covered Claire’s snow white hair in crimson. The two portions of the man’s body fell to the either side, bits of flesh and bone littered the small lake of blood that had formed around the Sister of Battle and her extinguished victim.
She turned around, the Eye of the Inquisition imprinted on her right eye blazed red as though consumed by a blood lust that screamed for more. “May the Emperor find forgiveness for your damned soul, for I shall not.”

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*Notice*
Greg the Scribe wanders threw the house noticing how empty it is with out the noise of the team running threw the house. There unnaturalness of this is what brought him from his studies in the basement, normally there would still be the sounds from outside filtering in threw the ducts in the home. “All alone I see” the voice came from a shadow of the hallway that lead to Ajax’s room sounded like a knife being slid across silk. “Whos that… I’ll have you know I’m armed and in a foul mood” Greg scrambled for the auto pistol that Kade had given him. “Oh now there will be no need for that sweetheart” from the shadows walked a woman of amazing beauty. Standing aittle over 6’3 dressed in a syth skin and little else. Her hair was cropped in the matter of the Sisterhood was almost mocking in respect of her manner. "I know your just as likely to shoot your self as me " she moved towards him with the grace of a phyrr cat. Although unarmed Greg felt very much the mouse. “I just wanted to ask you a few questions kitten and then ill be on my way and I’ll leave you to your studies” “I assure you that what ever your wanting to know I’ll have no answers” thats when he felt something metal wrap around his neck.
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Death of the Brood

Note: This was not part of this adventure, I wrote it when Tom was doing his Deathwatch game. Most of our party did participate in the Deathwatch campaign so I figured this would be the best place to put this. Hope you like it :)

Burning Stealers—————————

Blackened bubbling ichor seeped from the cracks and gaps of their chitinous exoskeleton. By the time they knew of their impending doom the agitated generator had already buzzed to life and was pumping immense amounts of heat into their nest. Clawed hands pulled their burning weakened bodies limply out of their protective holes. Unearthly shrieks emitted from their elongated mouths.

Primeval eyes narrowed upon a lone figure that stood imposing in their nest. Within seconds the message had been relayed to the brood, their quarry must die. Many of the brood members had been able to pull themselves free, flopping to the grated flooring. Those that had not fled melted, fusing with the biological mass encompassing the walls of the nest.

A cacophony of other worldly shrieks drowned out the noise of the generator. While their ethereal cries of hate and pain reverberated outwards into the warp. An echoed cry of sorrow was sent by their exterior brethren.

Then the cries were silenced. Bolt rounds erupted from above, detonating within the crawling brood members. A mass of molten gore and tissue exploded and fizzled across the walls of the generator room. Brood members from the adjacent rooms awoke and swarmed over their new attackers. Blood lust and vengeance screeched from toothed gapping maws.

Multiple silhouettes of their prey stood about the hole to the generator room one floor below, ignorant of the reinforcements. Clearing the gap, a lone broodling leaped for the nearest food beast. Crashing into the beast it struggled to grab hold of its massive body. Before a better grip could be attained, the broodling was fended off by its prey’s large powerful arms. Quickly righting itself, the broodling roared in defiance before being cut down. It’s body blown apart by bolt rounds.

Flames roared out of a device its defending prey held. The flames superheated the organs inside the broodling, blowing its chest outward in a flaming geyser. With large sweeps the prey cornered the last of the reinforcements before incinerating their bodies. Charred and warped remains were all that was left of the part of the brood. Their etheric voices forever silenced.
Through bubbling blackened throats and the remnants of the brood still shrieked for blood.

Dragging themselves across the grated floor towards the prey standing in their nest, the few who survived the bolt fire encroached upon the lone figure. It swung a large object in a vain attempt at warding off its hunters. A third arm shot out at the closer brood members, but the swings were clumsy and inevitably missed.

Only two of the brood made it to that prey. However, their strength was all but gone. Their last psychic cries of defiance were slowly and painfully silenced as the heat of the generators boiled the last traces of their brains away. Reports of regret and worry filtered back from the external Tyranid leader beasts, in search of their dying kin. However, their cries were not responded in kind. The entire brood had been lost, and the prey was still alive.

Moments afterwards external vents leading from the generator opened, disintegrated Tyranid bodies began tumbling off the outer hull of the complex. Leader beasts pulled back their packs and broods and waited for the venting to cool enough to gain entry. Their brothers will be avenged and their quarry’s bio-mass absorbed back into the swarm.

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Rebirth
“Well dont you just look pretty” Doc says taking a long drink out of a beaker.

Greens body or what was left of it lay on a metal slab before him. Both of his legs where gone just below the waist along with his left arm and from the forearm down on the right. His chest was had a gapping wound just over where his left lung would have been.

“How in the thrones name is he still alive” Doc said looking at the six men in his room. " And come to think of it who the frag are you" “who we are Eric doesn’t matter. Your task was to keep these men alive and thats just what your going to do” the man in the black robe pointed a metal finger towards the back yard of the house where the Valkyrie had landed a few moments ago “now get on board we will have everything you need where we are going however we don’t have the medical skills needed for the transport”…

I

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A Holy Audience, part 2

Over the next several weeks Ajax returned on many occasions to tell this young man of his many battles against the voracious Tyranids, horrific mutants, and even of the nightmarish Necrons. All the time censoring his speeches by excluding his employment in the Inquisition. The young man was entranced by Ajax’s stories of valor and glory.

As he listened, Joshua would interject with stories of saints of heroes in the holy writing. He also spoke of his grandfather who served in the guard as a priest, until eventually the Ecclesiarchy pulled his grandfather from the field and stationed him on this hive. He would tell Joshua of the places and battles he fought, and now Joshua would do his best to recollect and recite the stories. This continued for an hour or so at a time before Joshua was called away on duty.

Ajax enjoyed his chats with the priest. It was like telling a child of his life and accomplishments. However, there was always that feeling of worry. He couldn’t shake it and often haunted his nights. Ajax would often attend Joshua’s sermons, hoping to hear some holy solution to his problem, but alas there came none. So one day he told Joshua of his fears.

“Joshua, I’ve enjoyed our swapping of triumphant adventures. You’ve taught me much of the saints that was before me. However, I have not told you of my failings. Which is more why I came here in the first place. I need advice.”

Joshua’s child-like smile vanished in a moment and in its place was the stern look of a concerned parent. “What is it my son?” His voice deepened as he often did when he turned to a grave issue in his sermons.

“I. . .I am the only survivor of both my tribe and of my regiment. I know it sounds…cowardly, but I’m worried that I can’t avoid death forever.” Ajax then told him of his tribe’s massacre, and how he hid from the Orks. Then of how he heard of his regiment being killed while he was “on leave.”

Joshua sat silently for a moment, “I unlike many of my brothers in the Ecclesiarchy understand the stresses of life, and in this stress there is doubt. Doubt in oneself can sprout doubt in the Emperor. You are a faithful man and follower of the Emperor our talks have made this much clear to me. I want to meet more often then we have and you and I will go over the scriptures until we find some passages that will help.” He paused to pat the book on his side, “The Emperor has given us this life and protects us with his will, and you just need to be told that in a way you’ll remember.”

With time, Ajax had become very familiar with many lines of scripture that would aid him. The tables had turned from Ajax being the teacher to Joshua. Joshua would make him read page after page of holy books and often from the one Joshua had on his hip. While testing him verbally each day of the particularly useful passages they learned the day prior. He would even make Ajax lead mock sermons and those sometimes held an audience.

After departing from Joshua’s daily guidance, Ajax would recite the scriptures in his head to help quell the thoughts and nightmares of possible deaths. He found many of them particularly useful and even calmed him down when he became frustrated.

As the months came to an end, Ajax needed Joshua’s guidance less and less. Until one day Joshua’s book was once more strapped to his side and he didn’t ask Ajax what they’d learned the day before. Ajax just smiled and told Joshua how he got the scar across his chest and head.

When he got home that day he felt worlds better, he knew the Emperor was watching over him and that he would some day have to face death, but it was his duty to keep fighting and protecting the Imperium and the God-Emperor. He planned on meeting up with Joshua the next day to continue his story telling, until he looked outside. Several figures were coming up the walk towards the front, three were his companions, but the forth had their eyes covered.

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A Holy Audience
To Error is Human

Ajax silently slipped into his room when the group had finally arrived back at the house. Drinking what little remained of the keg from the previous night, Ajax kept to himself for a long while. With the death of Gibson, Ajax was now the last surviving member of the Mordian 13th. Nightmarish thoughts of self doubt and worry plagued his mind and dreams.

How had he survived, why had he survived? If it were not for the interception of Inquisitor Creed he would have been upon the planet and died with the rest of the regiment. In his youth why was he the only one left, when the Orks massacred his tribe? What if the Flayed One’s claws dug just a bit deeper into his chest and punctured his heart? That indescribable madness that held him steady in the face of adversity where did that come from? Restless and tired he needed to relief, he needed prayer and someone to listen to it.

After a couple days of contemplation and worry Ajax left the house in search of a salvation. His quest through the labyrinthine streets eventually led him to a cathedral a couple levels below the house. Large gothic arches and hanging gargoyles towered ominously above him, leering down at his frame questioningly. Stained glass windows covered the outside of the church depicting saints and heroes of the Imperium long since passed back into the Emperor’s light. Taken aback by the immensity of the cathedral, it took Ajax some time to approach the large wooden entrance.

Opening the massive engraved doors Ajax stepped inside. At the far end of the pew filled room stood alone unattended altar. Behind that rose a colossal pillar that stretched from the floor to the ceiling, several stories up. Shelves of candles spiraled up the column each one lit and burning. The wide body of the pillar housed several massive golden Aquilas. Servo skulls and cherubs flittered around the pillar and above Ajax’s head, cleaning and maintaining the spotless room. A pair of hunched figures continued praying, appearing unaware of the newcomer.

Just as outside, Ajax paused to take in the majesty. On his homeworld, the missions were small white domed constructs with warehouse like buildings surrounding it. Efficiency and protection was more important than appearance. While this building’s entire surface was covered in sacred symbols and iconography. Ajax stood mouth a gapped.

“Beautiful isn’t it? In my works I often overlook the majesty of this place,” interjected a voice to his right.

A young robbed man had fallen in beside Ajax, his eyes slowly looking across the walls and murals about the chamber. His robe comprised of a mixture of red and gray fabric forming geometrical patterns on his sleeves and hood, a large book slung tightly to his belt and side, and small amounts of gold trimmed his robe.

“I just have never seen a place like this before.” Ajax finally replied.

Gracefully the young priest turned to Ajax, “I’m sorry I didn’t mean to disturb your reverence.
However, I must ask what brings you to the Emperor’s house this day?” Spoke the man through a thin smile.

Quickly straightening himself, “my name is Ajax. I am a warrior of the Emperor and am faithful to his teachings. Since I have gone to serve, I have not been to His house. This is something I want to change.”

The man’s smile grew as he extended his hand. “It is an honor to meet you Ajax; the Imperium needs men such as yourself to fight on the fields for her. My name is Joshua and I am one of the priests that tend this monastery.”

Joshua’s hand was engulfed by Ajax’s as they shook. Yet to his surprise the priest’s shake was strong for a hive worlder. “So from the look of you, and the scars you bare you’ve seen your share of warfare. Would you by chance have time to regale me of your travels? Very few guardsmen come to through the hive, since they’re usually here on leave and I would so much like to hear of your tales.”

Ajax was taken aback by this young man. None of the ecclesiarchy of his home world cared much for him or his tribe. They only stood around complaining and ordering people about. Only the young missionaries that joined the tribes seemed to show any compassion towards them. Yet this young priest wanted to talk and listen to what he had to say. The emperor had granted Ajax his audience.

To be continued…

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