Faith and Betrayal

"Eleventh Hour"

“The world breaks everyone and afterward many are strong in the broken places. But those that will not break it kills. It kills the very good and the very gentle and the very brave impartially. If you are none of these you can be sure it will kill you too but there will be no special hurry.”

-Ernest Hemingway, Ancient Terran Remembrancer

On the war-torn world of Kulth (and its neighboring jungle moon Aeyras), the Imperial high command has launched a massive military operation codenamed “Operation Hammerstrike” to re-take the planet from its Ork invaders. Inquisitor Sand and his Acolytes of Romulus Cell (including Mir, who has Gw catachan artworkrecently returned from completion of his Crusader training at the House of the Vigilant Sword), have been tasked to join the operation with the important mission of terminating Thorgoz Foerender- the Ork Lieutenant who leads the Ork forces on the moon of Aeyras. On Aeyras, the Orks have a fortified stronghold inside a massive ancient crater called “The Teeming” and Catachan scouts are constantly monitoring the area to track Foerender’s movements. The surveillance efforts pay off, and with Foerender’s position confirmed, Sand and his retinue, supported by Imperial Guardsmen from the Catachan 14th Recon Company and Scintilla 17th Regiment, launch an assault on the fortified Ork network of buildings and tunnels on the crater’s rim- an area the Imperials call the Scrap Forts.

The night time raid proves successful, but the intense fighting between the Ork and Imperial forces cost nearly the entire strength of the 14th Company and much of the Scintilla 17th. During the raid, Inquisitor Sand and his retinue were able to kill the Ork leader but Sand is critically wounded and his Acolytes are battered. Still inside one of the Scrap Fort complexes, the Acolytes overhear Imperial vox traffic describing a massive Ork counter-assault in response to the raid and death of the leader. Imperial forces are being annihilated from the unstoppable Ork surge and those between the Fallow River and the Teeming have been ordered to pull back to the main Imperial base on Aeyras- Firebase Long-tooth. Imperial forces only have eleven hours to make it back to Firebase Long-tooth before the Imperial fleet commences with a massive orbital bombardment to the contested area- hoping to wipe out as many Orks as possible to stop the surge from overrunning all Imperial holdings on the moon.
Orks 02
Inquisitor Sand, his retinue and a few surviving Catachans led by Sgt. Dryak find themselves still behind enemy lines when this announcement is made and with time starting to tick by, they begin to carry out their wounded all the while fighting their way out of the Scarp Forts as mobs of Orks begin to flood their position. This is the start of a desperate and deadly trek through the harsh swamp and jungle to get out of the bombardment area in time. The group fends off several Ork mobs and Red demonstrates that his Crusader training has made him quite deadly with the power sword as he slays Orks single-handedly, including two massive Nobz, while protecting his injured Inquisitor. In addition to the Ork menace, the group must negotiate through the masses of panicked Imperial forces fighting to get out of the bombardment area. The tenements of Imperial discipline have broken down and few care for the authority of an Inquisitor or ranking military officers.
Valkyrie
With their two remaining Catachan guardsmen, the party is able reach the massive Mechanicus Bridge that spans the Fallow River to Firebase Long-tooth. Arriving just prior to the orbital bombardment, the group finds that a huge Ork force is fighting its way across the bridge and threatens to overrun the Imperial lines on the other side. With salvation waiting on the other side of the Bridge and death at their backs, Inquisitor Sand and his Acolytes fight and sneak their way to the mid-point of the bridge where the Ork advance has momentarily stalled. Upon defeating an Ork Mek Boy and his accompanying Ork mob, the group takes a moment to rest and treat their wounded only to learn that the Orks are on the verge of breaking through to the other side of the bridge and in order to stop this, the Military Command has ordered the imminent destruction of the Mechanicus Bridge (which has already been fixed with explosives). There is no way for the party to run and fight their way across the last of the Bridge span in time so Inquisitor Sand voxes to the Imperial lines an order for immediate extraction for him and his team. Though initially reluctant, Sand is able to push his Inquisition authority to motivate the Imperial forces to send a Valkyrie, which is able to arrive and fly the team to safety just as the orbital bombardment and detonation of the bridge begins.

  • GM’s Note: This mission was ran with modifications from Fantasy Flight’s free adventure by Owen Barnes. It can be found here:
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"The Emptied Coffin"

Accompanied by the psychic-induced death of a nearby Deathwatch Librarian, the Omega Vault at Watch Fortress Erioch has opened to reveal several items of interest- a data-slate of pre-Heresy design containing information about the planet of Jove’s Descent (and the ancient but now extinct race of Xenos that inhabited the planet called the Ghanathaar) and a prophecy of an unspecified doom to befall, a strange crystal that appears to be a data-storage device that is accessible by using psychic powers and six shoulder shields of pre-Horus Heresy date that are made to be affixed to the left shoulder pauldron of power armor. More interesting is the fact that each of these shields bears a different Space Marine Chapter symbol (including some that did not exist pre-Heresy)- the Space Wolves, Alpha Scars, Black Templar, Ultramarines, and Dark Angels, and more strange, one bears the symbol of the Adeptus Sororitas.
Omega vault
The Deathwatch Command is vex by this incident, but deems that investigation of the matter is a high priority. Investigative theory immediately points to Kill-Team Kronus, which is the only known Kill-Team to have a Sister of Battle in service and whose make-up, with the exception of the Dark Angels shield, matches the Chapter symbols of the shields exactly. Coincidently, the opening of the Vault occurred at the same time that a newly inducted Deathwatch Space Marine from the Dark Angels Chapter, Brother Dante, arrived on station to begin his Vigil. Command does not believe that these are all mere coincidences and orders that Brother Dante be assigned to Kill-Team Kronus and the team be dispatched to the planet of Jove’s Descent to further investigate the significance of the shields and the prophecy.

Watch Captain Avincus is tasked with command of the operation and orders Kill-Team Kronus to arm and depart for Jove’s Descent via the Deathwatch frigate the Thunder’s Word. In addition, Master Apothecary Thann of Watch Commander Mordigael’s personal staff wants the Kill-team to field test toxin coated anti-Tyranid ammunition made from the research conducted by Magos Vyakai. The team selects Brother G’heirnat as the team leader for this mission (his fourth mission as Kill-team leader).

The long journey through Tyranid-infested space takes a little over a month and upon arrival at Jove’s Descent, the Deathwatch finds a pitched space battle taking place between Tyranid ships and unidentified human ships of unknown allegiance. Also of interest, the augurs of the Thunder’s Word show that there is a large human settlement on the planet that the Imperium has no record of. The Thunder’s Word is quickly engulfed in the battle but is able to insert the Kill-team planet side via Drop Pod before moving to a safe location. The Kill-team makes a hard landing in the jungle-covered surface of Jove’s Descent and heads toward the human settlement.
Harridan
Upon arrival at the settlement, they find it under the cover of a large spore cloud and being besieged by flying Tyranid forces. The Kill-team can make out the shapes of gargoyles and winged-warrior Shrikes as well as a massive Harridan. With no fear, they decide to attack the Xenos and break cover from the jungle to close the distance to the enemy. The Kill-team and Tyranid forces clash and Brother Angelos is nearly killed after being struck by a massive bio-plasma blast. Another massive plasma blast from the Harridan wounds Brother Aoner but the Harridan’s shooting is devastating but inaccurate and most of the blasts miss the Kill-team. The kill-team continues to pour fire into the Harridan and while there are a few exceptional shots, the majority of the damage suffered from the Harridan is from the experimental geo-phage toxin coated bolter rounds. The influx of toxin begins to overload the massive beast’s body and eventually its body is too poisoned to go on. With its internal organs in failure, the Harridan plummets downward with an earth-shaking crash.

During the battle, Brother Aoner unleashes a powerful psychic blast into a horde of Gargoyles. Many of the winged creatures die to the psychic energies but the manifestation of the power has a deadly side effect when it pulls a Daemon Prince into reality. Brother Aoner has heard of this Daemon Prince, a traitorous Captain from the Black Legion known as Vargash the Black (who is known to plague the Jericho Reach from his cruiser hidden in the Hadex Anomaly). Bent on Aoner’s destruction for this inconvenience, Vargash charges Aoner- his massive form bowling the smaller Space Marine over. Brother Aoner begins to fight for survival as some of his Battle-Brother’s rush to his aid. Brothers G’heirnat and Dante are too late to stop Vargash from opening up Aoner’s chest with a massive Chaos Sword, but they attempt to spill as much of the Daemon Prince’s blood before he returns to his Warp gate, the object of his inconvenience dead. While the martial prowess of the Prince is too skilled for Brother Dante, Brother G’heirnat uses his hatred of all things Chaos to explode into a fury of blows. Hammering away at the daemon’s defenses, G’heirnat sheds some of Vargash’s unholy blood before the Daemon disappears in the Warp gate.
Night lord
Aoner was severely wounded, but he is still alive and Brother G’heirnat heals him enough to continue their mission, the Kill-team makes their way into the human settlement and finds that their presence is not welcomed. One of the settlers, a man named Ivan, addresses the Kill-team despite the hostile looks he receives from his comrades and he leads the Kill-team to the settlement’s leader, a man named Surantes. During their meeting with Surantes, the Kill-team learns that Surantes works for a larger Cold Trade organization that sells relics excavated from ancient Xenos sites on Jove’s Descent. He also explains that if it not for the smugglers’ fleet and planet side operation, Jove’s Descent would have long been in the control of the Tyranids. Brother Vectis discusses limited portions of their mission in order to obtain helpful information from Surantes and an agreement is reached between the forces that Surantes will tell the Kill-team about the location of some recent strange occurrences at a dig site called the “Winding Catacombs” in exchange for a level of discretion about their operation.

Entering the catacombs, the Kill-team finds themselves in an unnatural and alien tunnel system. The tunnels are made of a strange bone-like dense material and Brother Aoner senses a high level of psychic power in the catacombs. Evidence of the Cold Trade smugglers’ excavation operation is present and the Kill team passes by the workers and guards without issue due to Surantes’ orders. They eventually make their way deep to a part of the ruins that the smugglers have sealed off with a heavy door and entering this new section, the Kill-Team finds it untouched by the smugglers and filled with a strong psychic energy that threatens to break their minds. Their mysterious relic shields begin to glow with an eerie light, seemingly to protect them from this energy.

This section of the catacombs shows little evidence of excavation and the Kill-team eventually reaches an elaborate Xenos burial chamber- its walls and ceilings covered in alien relief carvings. The corpse of a Xenos creature (a bipedal crab-like humanoid) dressed in rich attire lies dead just outside a massive coffin located in the center of the room. Entering the room causes this figure to animate and with the assistance of similar crab-like apparitions, the Xenos creature attacks. The Kill-team finds that their foes’ attacks bypass their power armor and the fighting becomes fierce as the majority of the Kill-team joins up to assault the main Xenos creature which eventually falls from the sustained onslaught and vanishes, but not before gifting the Kill-team a vision of a fortified Imperial planet with a massive crevice in the surface of the earth at the foot of Hive city and below this a strange portal to the warp. The meaning of this vision is unclear and the Kill-team returns to Surantes.

Prior to their meeting with Surantes, the Kill-team meet up with Ivan and learn that he is an undercover agent of the Ordo Malleus and that he needs the Kill-team to extract him becomes his mission has been placed in jeopardy with the Kill-team’s arrival. The Kill-team agrees to take Ivan off-planet with them but not before terminating Surantes. Killing the crime lord causes his men to go on alert and in order to escape, the Kill-team and Surantes must assault the heavily guarded star port to steal a shuttle. The resistance by Surantes men starts off fierce but the Kill-team is able to route the starport’s defenders and secure a shuttle to make their escape.

  • GM’s Note: This mission was ran with modifications from the adventure of the same name by Dan Shook. It can be found here:
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"Tattered Fates"- The 13th Hour

Ref: Inq/072391366/TFLogo
Subject: Verbal Transcript of Pict-Recorded Document
Date: 815.M41
Location: Private ship section of Inquisitor Sand on-board the Resurrected Faith- Adeptus Mechanicus Cruiser in orbit over Morwen VI with the Hippocrasian Agglomeration
Sector: Calixis (Adrantis Sub)
Original Transcription: Savant Falker, Ordo Xenos
Additional Notes: <awaiting>

+ EXTARCTED FROM THE MEMORY OF PERSONAL SERVO-SKULL IN SERVICE TO INQUISITOR GRAMEN SAND+

>[RECORDING STARTS]

[Stationary Pict-Source] Narrow angle view of an undecorated room with white-colored walls and flooring. A single bed is positioned in the room surrounded by various medical monitoring equipment attached to a prone figure laying on the bed [Subject I] who is being tended by a medical servitor. [Subject I] appears to be a beautiful woman in her early thirties of Malfian descent. She is wearing a hospital gown and her abdomen area is covered in bandages- positively identified as Du’Landra Melua, a minor noble from Malfi. [verified]
Sitting in a simple chair on one side of the bed, near [Subject I] [Melua] head is a handsome man [Subject II] with Scintillan noble features wearing a white and red robe holding a data-slate in his hands. An Inquisitor Rosette hangs from a silver chain around his neck- positively identified as Inquisitor Gramen Sand, Ordo Xenos. [verified]

VOICE (1) [MELUA]: Ughh! My stomach…it hurts.
VOICE (2) [SAND]: My Lady, careful not to move too much or else you will tear the stitches. I am instructing the servitor to increase you pain-killer dose three more units.
VOICE (1) [MELUA]: Thank you…The pain is near unbearable…But thank you Inquisitor Sand- you and your Acolytes saved my life.
VOICE (2) [SAND]: The pain should subside in a moment. And you’re welcome…My Acolytes and I believe you are important to our investigation and may still have a role to play. Now I know that this is a difficult time due to your recovery my Lady but I must obtain what information I can from you to assist me in this investigation…
VOICE (1) [MELUA]: Yes, yes…of course Inquisitor.
VOICE (2) [SAND]: Let’s start from where we left off- you had all just received your invitations from the Spider Bride to attend the Revel of Darkness at the grand manse of Gabriel Chase.
Gabriel chase
VOICE (1) [MELUA]: Yes, yes, what a creepy place. Never before in all the manses on Malfi have I seen such a place full of such wealth and history, but something was strange about the place. There was an “off-ness” about it.
VOICE (2) [SAND]: An off-ness?
VOICE (1) [MELUA]: Its hard to explain…it was a feeling that things were not right but nothing specific that I can place. Once inside, the feeling was less noticeable due to all the costumed Revelers, their entourages, and the serving staff. There were hundreds in the Manse and the food and drink were excellent. While many at the manse were there to party and witness the Grand Conjunction, there were several there to settle scores with other attendees during the “Dark Hour”- the time of the eclipse when one’s deeds cannot be held to consequences of the law.
VOICE (2) [SAND]: Red has briefed me on this ancient tradition that is unique to Quaddis at the time of the Revel. One can see how this would be a tempting venue to attend if one could afford an invitation. How did events unfold inside the manse?
VOICE (1) [MELUA]: Red said that it was important to find the Heron-masked Man and stop his plan. That bastard was responsible for all this! The death of Lar’ax and all those other people was his doing! The Pilgrims of Hayte are monsters. I heard the stories from my parents about the Bloody Solstice on Malfi but never could I imagine the destruction they seek to bring. These people are horrible and should not be allowed to breathe!
VOICE (2) [SAND]: I’m sorry for what happened to your brother…my Acolytes told me that they tried to restore him after you all found him in the manse in the zombie-state but unfortunately he was too far gone and the warp had taken his soul.
VOICE (1) [MELUA]: (sobbing for approx. one minute and thirty-three seconds)
VOICE (2) [SAND]: (Sand puts a hand on Melua’s shoulder) My Lady, you have my word that I will do everything in my power to track down this Heron-masked man and bring him the Emperor’s justice- for you and your brother.
VOICE (1) [MELUA]: (sobbing)…Thank you…thank you Inquisitor.
VOICE (2) [SAND]: (Sand takes a moment of pause before continuing) How did your search go?The black clock ifs
VOICE (1) [MELUA]: We spoke to several revelers, including Lord Tarrik Belasco from Malfi who was hunting his cousin Tobias. Guess he heard that Tobias was going to be at the Revel but he was not. We also met an old man and woman who had both been to a Revel before, the lady, Lady Obellia, she was really drunk but she showed us a secret passageways that were in the mansion’s walls. We saw the Theatre of Clocks- so many clocks on the walls of that room surrounding the central Steel Clock that counted down the hours to the thirteenth hours.
VOICE (2) [SAND]: This Steel Clock is where the stone that Quartiz (Quint) recovered was?
VOICE (1) [MELUA]: Yes, but that was much later on. There were several strange happenings before that as the hours counted down. People were throwing taunts and threats back and forth, people started going missing, we found dead bodies and servitors in the hidden passages, and the sun was steadily being blocked by the eclipse.
VOICE (2) [SAND]: Sounds like tensions were running high. Did you ever see the Heron-masked Man or this “Widower?”
VOICE (1) [MELUA]: We never saw the Heron-masked Man until the final hour, but we saw signs of his presence- the remains of a strange warp ritual and his minions wandering the manse.
VOICE (2) [SAND]: We’ll talk more in-depth about the Heron Masked-man and the Widower, but lets talk about what happened when the clock struck the Thirteenth Hour. When those notes were struck, what took place?
VOICE (1) [MELUA]: We were all in the Theatre of Clocks with other revelers when the Thirteenth Hour was struck. The Heron-masked Man was standing by the Steel Clock and he called out a challenge to the Widower who revealed himself. The two exchanged words and then the eclipsed happened, signaling the start of the Grand Conjuction, but the eclipse looked wrong- it was a bright burning sun of blackness. It was horrible to look at and many in the manse went mad.
VOICE (2) [SAND]: You were looking into the raw power of the warp I’m afraid. You must steel your will against its negative influence. We will continue to monitor you and the rest of the team for any lasting taint. What happened after the “Black Sun” appeared?250px pilgrims of hayte
VOICE (1) [MELUA]: Pandemonium and chaos…the Heron-mask Man and the Widower engaged in battle on the plinth of the Steel Clock. Pilgrims of Hayte emerged from the crowd and started attacking everyone. Explosions and gunfire were tearing up the place. The dead and dying were everywhere. I lost sight of Quartiz in the mayhem but I could see Chad (Lysandros) and Uriel taking cover inside the Steel Clock and Red fighting some of the cultists. Some of the cultists attacked me. Eventually I was able to kill them with my pistols.
VOICE (2) [SAND]: I have spoken with my Acolytes and they told me how bloody the battle was. Chad (Lysandros) was critically injured by the Widower, Hadrian was severely wounded by the cultists and Uriel had a brief instance where she lost her mind momentarily. I heard that some of the nobles you met, like Lord Belasco, helped you in your battle.
VOICE (1) [MELUA]: Yes, they helped us. I owe my life to the bodyguard of that drunk noble woman. He struck down some of my attackers. I know that Lord Belasco fought for us until he was struck down. Is he alive? I know that your men brought his body when we departed.
VOICE (2) [SAND]: He was critically injured but he is alive and recovering in the room next to yours. I will also speak to him about this incident when he is able. Back to the battle my Lady, how did it end?
VOICE (1) [MELUA]: The room was filled with dead people and the Widower was slaying the last of the survivors while Red was trying to free the pendulum from the Steel Clock. I saw the Heron-masked Man appear out of nowhere and attack the Widower and I started making my way to the battle. Something drew me to the Widower…a feeling or something. Is it true what your men said, that my family is distantly related to the Haarlocks?
VOICE (2) [SAND]: That seems to be what the research is showing but we will talk more about that later. Please, continue…
VOICE (1) [MELUA]: The Heron-mask Man was battling the Widower when Red finished cutting the pendulum keystone from the Steel Clock and with the separation of the pendulum, the Widower started unraveling into a blob of flesh that collapsed on the ground in the vague shape of a face that continued to talk and babble. The Heron-masked Man grabbed the Widower’s babbling remains and disappeared with them in a “door” that he created in the air.
VOICE (2) [SAND]: A “door?”
VOICE (1) [MELUA]: Yes, that best explains it. Red said it must have been a psychic power. We fled the manse after that, dragging the bodies of the wounded, and ran into your man- the guy named Pullo, who led us to you at the star port.
VOICE (2) [SAND]: So far everything seems consistent with the information I’ve obtained so far but there are some details that I want to revisit, and I would also like to talk to you about your initial investigation of your brother’s disappearance. But before we speak of that, I want to talk to you about a proposition I want to offer you…One that will change your life…

>[RECORDING ENDS]

  • GM’s Note: This mission was ran with modifications from Fantasy Flight’s “Tattered Fates” book by Alan Bligh and John French. It can be found here:
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"Tattered Fates"- Carnival of Blood

“In dread of the Traveler’s return we serve.”

-The Spider Bride, during a conversation with Acolytes of Red Cell

Emerging from the depths of the Red Cages, the Acolytes and Lord Melua find themselves in the gaming and arena section of Xicarph- the Promenade of Arenas. Packed with masked and costumed revelers and their entourages, all present for the Festival of Tattered Fates, the Acolytes assess their situation and evaluate their next move. With no money in their possession, Quint is able to pick the pockets of some of the revelers and this earns enough for the party to purchase a small amount of food. They also do some minor information gathering and come to the conclusion that they need to gather more funds to arm and equip themselves to complete their mission. Their information leads them to believe that the slum area of the city, known as the Collapsed Palaces, would be the cheapest (and more dangerous) place to find shelter to get some much needed rest.
Ayof image 20 794225i
On the way to the Collapsed Palaces, the party passes by a sermon being given by an Imperial Preacher and his small flock. The Preacher’s message about the Emperor is not popular with the crowd of revelers and an attempt is made on his life. The Acolytes step in to intervene on the Preacher’s behalf and for their assistance the Preacher offers them food and shelter in his sparse dwelling in the Collapsed Palaces which the party accepts. During conversation with the Preacher, Obadiah Psalter, the Acolytes learn that the Preacher once had a larger following and a small Imperial Chapel in the Collapsed Palaces, but recently most of his flock was slaughtered and his Chapel taken over by a would be preacher wearing a Heron Mask. Obadiah begs the Acolytes to help him secure back his Chapel and the following day, Mir, Uriel and Hadrian agree to help while Lysandros attempts to locate the White Scholar and Quint goes off in an attempt to increase their funds.
Venice carnival 2006

Obadiah leads the three Acolytes to the Chapel and upon entering, they find the Chapel has been abandoned but desecrated with the sacrifice of Obadiah’s men and the symbols of Chaos painted on the walls and floors. The party finds several interesting items left by the Heron Masked Man- several empty containers, which once held weapons and equipment, a file of documents on the lineage of several noble families, a file of documents with occult symbols and astrological data, and a painting of a large manse that Obadiah identifies as Gabriel Chase. The Heron Masked Man was gone but the chapel is guarded by a trio of Pink Horror daemons that emerge from the blood soaked floor and attack. Despite sustaining injuries from psychic attack, the party is able to banish the daemons back to the Warp. Gathering the evidence that the Heron Masked Man left, the party decides that the Chapel is too corrupted to be saved and set the place ablaze.

Quint and Lord Melua make their way back to the Promenade of Arenas to try their luck at some of the blood sports to make some much needed money for the party. Being a pistol duelist from Gunmetal City, Quint decides that his best bet is to compete in the Metallican Quick Draw completion. His winnings and side bets earn them a decent cash-purse and the two use some of the money to get a much needed shower and new clothes.

Lysandros uses some of Quint’s pick-pocketed obtained funds to hire a speeder carriage to take him to the other side of the city to the Refutation District (the location of the city’s colleges and scholarly establishments) in an effort to locate Inquisitor Karkalla’s Acolyte, the “White Scholar.” After questioning some of the local faculty, Lysandros makes contact with the White Scholar, whose name is Septimus Dexter, researching in one of the district libraries. After hearing Karkalla’s code phrase coming from a stranger, Septimus knows that ill-fate has befallen his master and Lysandros fills Septimus in on his meeting with the Inquisitor and his terrible demise at the hands of torturers. Septimus in turn fills Lysandros in on information discovered in the course of his research. He believes that the leader of the Pilgrims of Hayte is trying to destroy the planet and it has something to do with the strange celestial phenomenon that takes place during the Festival of Tattered Fates and also has something to do with a mythical creature servant of the Haarlocks known as the Widower. Firedemon31

A group of the Pilgrims of Hayte interrupt the meeting to attempt to take Septimus prisoner and a fight breaks out in which the enemy’s pyrokine suffers a backlash from the warp for the manifestation of his powers and is possessed by a fire-wielding daemon. The daemon starts to burn down the library and it isn’t long before the structure is aflame and many bystanders are burned to death in the warp-fire. As the daemon continues to wreak havoc in the Refutation District, Lysandros and Septimus are able to escape to the Collapsed Palaces.

Back at Preacher Psalter’s home, Red revels to the Preacher his group’s identity as agents of the Inquisition and their mission to kill the Heron Masked Man and stop his plan. Psalter pledges his service to Red’s cause and one of his acolytes, Jeremiah, tells Red the history of the Festival of Tattered Fates and the Grand Conjunction. Red decides that the group needs more money to equip and arm themselves and has Jeremiah lead them back to the Promenade of Arenas where they (Red, Sister Uriel, and Hadrian) go to the biggest and most affluent arena and gambling house- the “Fates Wheel.” At the Fate’s Wheel, the group (minus Jeremiah) signs up to compete in the gladiatorial games by taking on an opposing force of five cyber gladiators. Under the watchful eyes of thousands, the show is a crowd pleaser as the battle soon gets bloody. Everyone is seriously wounded and Sister Uriel would have perished if not for luck or the grace of the Emperor to save her from a killing blow. After a slow start, Red starts to do what he does best and his chain sword begins to make short work of their opponents. Though wounded, their win gives Red’s group some decent armor and melee weapons and a little cash to spend.

Their performance in the gladiator battle attracts the attention of two henchmen of the proprietor of the establishment, a man named Papa Grist, for a business opportunity. Grist is a successful businessman in both legal and illegal activities and he is interested in eliminating a local competitor, a mysterious long-time resident of Xicarph called the Spider Bride. Grist agrees to pay the group to kill the Spider Bride and return with proof. The Acolytes accept Grist’s offer and head back to the Collapsed Palaces to link up with the rest of their party.

Du landra meluaMeanwhile, Quint and Lord Melua go shopping for some much needed armor and equipment. They buy additional ammo and micro beads for the entire party and during their shopping they receive an unexpected visitor- Lord Melua’s older sister, Du’Landra Melua. The siblings are united and Du’Landra shares with her brother her efforts at tracking her brother since his disappearance at the House of Dust and Ash. What she found out about her brother’s abductors has her alarmed as she has found that they have ties to the Chaos cult- the Pilgrims of Hayte and a dangerous Wanted criminal from Malfi named Tobias Belasco. Lord Melua fills his sister in in the happenings since his arrival at the auction house till now and tells her about his new friends and their work with the Inquisition.

Sadly the reunion does not last long because shortly afterward while walking through the packed streets of Xicarph, Lord Melua is singled out and slain by a strange masked noble that is able to manipulate his body into all manner of deadly melee weapons. During this same attack, forces of the Heron Mask Man emerge from the crowd to attack the strange figure and capture Du’Landra. The street erupts in carnage as forces of the Heron Mask Man, the strange figure, revelers and their bodyguards and the city’s sentinels become engrossed in a massive battle. Quint and Du’Landra are able to flee from the scene to safety.

All the party, including Septimus and Lady Melua, meet back at the Collapsed Palaces to regroup and study the evidence secured from Obidiah’s now destroyed Chapel. Septimus concludes that the Melua family are distant blood relatives to the Haarlocks and also that the Heron Mask Man’s plan is to harness some type of power that will be released due to the Grand Conjunction.

After a short night’s rest, the Acolytes decide to pay a visit to the Spider Bride who resides in the pleasure gardens within the Akasen Follies. She receives them, laying on a giant web of circuitry that is tied into the network of the entire city, and the Acolytes discover that the Spider Bride knows about their agreement with Papa Grist and more- she knows their true identities and their mission on Xicarph. She offers them a counter-proposal of their deal with Grist (they only need to deliver the crime lord a box) and in return will give them information and an item that they need but do not yet know they need it. The Acolytes accept, and Spider Bride tells them that the Heron Mask Man intends to destroy this world. She also tells them that Widower is indeed real and that its power is bound in a Steel Clock (which can control and manipulate astronomical events) which is only vulnerable during the Revel of Darkness during which only “the blood may tame him if he has the will.”
Spiderbride
They return to the Fate’s Wheel to present Papa Grist his gift. Believing the party has been successful in their mission, Grist accepts their box (which he believes contains the Spider Bride’s head) and upon opening it he is decapitated by an arachnid servitor which seizes Grist’s screaming head and scuttles away. Grist’s gambling den erupts in frenzy as his bodyguards, including his two main henchmen- a deadly psyker named Bliss and a massive bare-knuckle brawler named Crackmarrow, attack the Acolytes. Bliss attempts to unsuccessfully psychically Dominate Red while Crackmarrow lands several blows on the Legate Investigator. The rest of the party attacks back and Quint gets into range so that his Untouchable aura starts to affect Bliss’ ability to employ his psychic powers. The drain on his power causes Bliss to get desperate and he has to “Push” his abilities past safe levels to manifest them which allows his powers to go off but unfortunately causes a psychic backlash that kills several of Grist’s bodyguards and surrounding patrons and leaves Bliss a helpless catatonic on the floor. Several of the Acolytes are wounded in the blast but continue to fight and despite being bruised and battered, they are able to dispatch the enemy and flee the Fate’s Wheel before more of Grist’s security arrives.

  • GM’s Note: This mission was ran with modifications from Fantasy Flight’s “Tattered Fates” book by Alan Bligh and John French. It can be found here:
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"Tattered Fates"- The Red Cages

The surviving members of Red Cell (Quint, Hadrian, Lysandros, and Sister Uriel) find that they have been taken captive by unknown forces. Unsure of how much time has passed since the ill-fated events that took place at the House of Dust and Ash, during which Rasar was killed by daemons, the Acolytes go in and out of consciousness witnessing unspeakable horrors and torment from their captors in the sporadic moments when they are awake. Eventually, the Acolytes wake to find themselves free of their bonds but lying naked at the bottom of a blood-soaked blood sport arena pit with several other captives, including Lord Melua; Red is not present and his fate is unknown.

A pack of deadly canine-like creatures are released into the pit and begin to devour the trapped humans. With the help of a Heron Masked Man, the Acolytes and Lord Melua are the only survivors of the blood sport pit, which they barely escape. Free from immediate danger, they discover that their rescuer is gone but he has left a dagger and a strange note pledging possible assistance. The party has little time to contemplate its meaning at the moment, and with pursuers hot on their heels, they flee from the pit and into the depths of a massive steel and concrete labyrinth with the constant sounds of machinery. The purpose and whereabouts of their location is unknown, but hours of walking bring them no exit or interaction with people other than the hunting parties of men tracking them with sensor-equipped servo-skulls. The party is able to defeat or evade these hunting teams and start to accumulate weapons from their hunters, or from the dead bodies of others discovered in the course of their travels.
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Hunting parties are not the only dangers that the battered party encounter in the depths of this hellish labyrinth. Strange deadly creatures, murderous servitors, a disturbing shrine and an ancient abandoned manse with the remains of a giant humanoid are sights that the party comes across. Eventually the party happens upon a group of beast wranglers herding a hideous and deadly looking creature to the doors of a location designated as Vault 13. Following safely behind, the Acolytes find Vault 13 to be a massive room that appears to be of some importance to the operations going on. It is filled with cargo containers, an overhead winch system, several large animal cages, a security monitoring station, an Imperial Guard field hospital pod and most importantly, an elevator that hopefully goes up to freedom. The area is heavily guarded by the beast wranglers and there appears to be special interest in guarding the hospital pod.

Quint and Sister Uriel come up with a plan to distract the guards by releasing some of the caged creatures to draw the guards’ attention and using the distraction to approach the medical pod and find out what is inside. Quint and Lord Melua approach a trio of cages while the others wait for their move. The first cage that they inspect contains hideous man-sized spiders with blades for mandibles and claws. Both Lord Melua and Quint lose their nerve at the sight of these creatures and Quint is so traumatized that he temporary loses his ability to speak. It is decided that the spider-creatures are too much and they move to the next cage and find a pack of the same type of canine creatures that were released to devour the Acolytes in the blood sport cage during their initial encounter in this place.
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The plan goes somewhat according to plan- one of the creatures pursues Lord Melua upon its release, two run after Quint and the rest charge toward a group of the wranglers. Using the distraction, the rest of the Acolytes begin their approach to the Pod. Wranglers begin to take up positions around the pod and security station while others go after Quint and the creatures he released. Of additional concern, a sniper on top of the medical pod makes himself known and begins engaging the Acolytes and the creatures.

A fierce run and gun battle with bouts of intense melee breaks out in the Vault. Surprisingly, Lord Melua demonstrates that he can be a fierce fighter when pushed and he single-handedly dispatches the creature pursuing him and then kills several of the slavers with an axe. Hadrian also shows that he can be quite deadly with the use of a sniper rifle that he repurposed from a slaver (a weapon that he is not trained on) and he dispatches several of the enemy.
Axeman
Sister Uriel is the first to make it to the pod and upon swinging open its doors she finds their missing teammate and a gruesome sight. Under the guard of a torturer and a medical servitor, in a scene of blood-splattered gore, are two naked individuals strapped down on metal lab tables. One of these is the unconscious form of Red missing a large chunk of muscle from the thigh of his left leg and on the other table- a man missing his legs from the knees down, his right arm and with a crudely nailed Inquisitor Rosette nailed directly into his chest. The Acolytes and Slavers all congregate in the medical pod to finish the battle and eventually the slavers are defeated.

The party learns that other occupant of Red’s prison is an Inquisitor of the Ordo Xenos named Nazauth Karkalla. Karkalla tells the Acolytes that they are in Xicarph- the capital city of the pleasure planet of Quaddis during a great celebration called the Festival of Tattered Fates- a great celebration of decadence and sinful folly. The Inquisitor explains that he was in the process of tracking members of the criminal organization known as the Beast House to their operations on Quaddis when his team was ambushed by members of the Beast House backed by members of a Chaos cult called the Pilgrims of Hayte. With the death of all of his men but one, the Inquisitor was captured and has been tortured by a man known as the Heron Masked Man. Karkalla believes that the Heron Masked Man has a plan to bring death to this world and asks that the Acolytes stop it.

The Acolytes swear to the Inquisitor that they will bring the Emperor’s Justice and stop the Heron Masked Man’s plan and Karkalla’s instructs them to find his last surviving acolyte, the White Scholar. Upon giving this last bit of information, the Inquisitor breathes his last. Mir relates to his fellows how he and Karkalla were tortured and also shares his disturbing experience of having parts of his leg eaten by the Wanted heretic that they met at the auction at the House of Dust and Ash known as Tobias Belasco. Mir also tells them that he overheard the leader of the Beast Slavers, a man wearing a Jackal Mask, mention to his men that Marshek (a Rogue Trader that the Cell also met at the House of Dust and Ash) was working with the Heron Masked Man.

Grabbing what gear they can salvage from the dead slavers and the discarded piles of equipment and supplies in the Vault, the Acolytes make their escape from the vast underground nightmare and emerge on the surface of the city, which is enclosed in a giant glass dome. The city streets are crowded with costumed and masked revelers and the Acolytes find themselves in the gaming and blood sport arena section of the city.

  • GM’s Note: This mission was ran with modifications from Fantasy Flight’s “Tattered Fates” book by Alan Bligh and John French. It can be found here:
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"Force Majuere"

After a previous investigation by Inquisitor Sand’s Red Cell on the moon of Donaris, which uncovered information about a secret Serrated Query distribution center in Volg Hive on the planet of Fenksworld, Inquisitor Sand has decided to take aggressive action to secure this Serrated Query facility and terminate and capture for interrogation as many of the enemy as possible. In order to do this, Inquisitor Sand has requisitioned several units of Imperial Guard and local Planetary Defense Forces (PDF) to launch a coordinated assault on this large distribution center. In addition, Inquisitor Sand has also secured the use of Kill-team Kronus from the Deathwatch to take on the responsibility of assaulting the distribution center’s suspected command section, which will most likely be the location of the center’s senior leadership who will no doubt be heavily guarded.

After receiving their briefing, the Kill-team makes their way to the armory of the Deathwatch frigate, Thunder’s Word, to gather weapons and equipment. With the absence of their Devastator, Brother Corvin (who has returned to service with his parent Chapter) and the team’s other Librarian, Brother Erik (who is still healing from the injuries he sustained by the Tau on Baraban), the Apothecary, Brother G’heirnat, arms himself with a missile launcher to give the Kill-team some additional firepower to deal with masses of enemy troops and armored vehicles- he appears to have taken a liking to its use since the team’s last mission on Baraban. Palatine Ruby also decides that something with a little punch for enemy armor will be useful and appropriately swaps her bolt pistol for a powerful inferno pistol. Of additional note, the team has been joined by a newly inducted member of the Deathwatch- a Tech Marine from the Ultramarine Chapter named Brother Vectius, whose expertise should allow the Kill-team to secure valuable Intelligence from the Serrated Query’s data cogitators.

Once finished with arming, Brother Angelos takes on the role of team leader for this mission and briefs his team on the plan of attack, which involves an orbital insertion via drop pod straight into the heart of the compound just after the Imperial Guard and PDF begin their assault. The plan goes accordingly, and the Kill-team descends amongst the confused enemy- their drop pod crashing through the roof of one of the compound’s many warehouses and crushing several enemy troops before coming to rest and releasing its deadly human cargo.

Kill-team Kronus wastes no time with unleashing death onContact   power armor minigun by shimmering sword d2yjzsr their enemies who start to fall from a mixture of bolter, missile and psychic death. The Kill-team decides to split into two groups- Brother Aoner and Brother Vectius remain on ground level to start looking for Intelligence and enemy leaders while Palatine Ruby, Brother Angelos and Brother G’heirnat go to the rooftop to rain death on their incoming foes. The Serrated Query soon begin to show that they are well equipped and it does not take long until multi-laser armed Sentinels, armored vehicles, heavy power-armored assault cannon wielding guards and a mass of highly disciplined light infantry converge on the Kill-team’s position.

The fighting becomes intense as bullets and explosions rock the area and the Kill-team starts to sustain injuries from the sheer amount of firepower being thrown at them. Brother G’heirnat starts targeting the sentinels for destruction with his missile launcher and Brother Angelos brings to the fight to the enemy on the ground starting with a jump pack leap onto the hood of one of the armored vehicles, which crushes its engine block and disables it. Palatine Ruby also descends to the ground via jump pack and takes the fight to the enemy. Losses for the enemy begin to mount, and with the destruction of their heavy weapons and armored support, the rest of the Serrated Query’s perimeter units are destroyed or routed.

With no notable Intel or prisoners to process for information, the Kill-team starts to clear the inside of individual buildings. One of these buildings appears to be of interest- a massive warehouse sealed with heavily reinforced doors with a complex locking mechanism. The heavy doors are no match for the Brother G’heirnat’s massive strength and Brother Vectius’ servo-arm as each of them easily tear open the doors. The forces of the Serrated Query are prepared for the breach and immediately fire on the Kill-team from their prepared defensive positions. What follows is a brutal battle against the last of the Serrated Query’s resistance. The Kill-team takes on Combat Servitors, highly trained Query Operatives, a rogue psyker and the overseer of the distribution center, a known criminal named Talbot.
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The tactics, skill and armament of the Serrated Query Operatives are enough to present a respectable challenge to the Space Marines and their lone Sister of Battle and the Kill-team sustains an initial pounding when they breach the warehouse. But the battle becomes desperate for the enemy as their forces slowly begin to fall to the Deathwatch and in the end Talbot is taken into custody; one of the lone survivors of the Serrated Query forces. Interrogation of Talbot and forensic analysis of the files housed in the warehouse data cogitators should provide the Inquisition with valuable information on the Serrated Query’s operations in this sector and beyond.

  • GM’s Note: This mission was created by the GM and inspired by The Ghost in the Shell television episode “SA: Unequal Terrorist – NOT EQUAL.”
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"House of Dust and Ash"

BY ORDER OF HIS MOST HOLY MAJESTY THE GOD-EMPEROR OF TERRA INQUISITOR GRAMEN SAND’S PERSONAL LOGS- AUTHORISED PERSONNEL ONLY

• Log Number 126:44V:DD3:Hex
• Work Station Location: Amber2

Please enter your authority code> * * * * * * * * * * * *
Validating…
Thank you, Inquisitor Sand.

You may proceed…

• Date: 815.M41
• Transcription: Adept Thodinna, Ordo Xenos, Hive Glorianna, Solomon
• Subject: Missing Operatives- Red Cell

Following my meeting at the Chancellery Court with Inquisitor Silas Marr, I have personally involved myself in the efforts to locate my missing Acolytes. Tasking Razor Cell with the bulk of the investigation duties on the planet of Solomon, much has been discovered concerning the path travelled by Red Cell. I am disappointed by the lack of information provided to me by Marr, and I know better than to test the boundaries with such an established Inquisitor that may, should the rumors be true, have the ears of leadership in the Inquisition above those of Lord Caidin himself. Marr’s statement about undisclosed person(s) singling out members of Red Cell for use in this mission troubles me. I know not who these individuals are or what their intentions are with my Acolytes. Hopefully more than petty revenge from my enemies is the cause. More research is needed in the matter and perhaps locating Mir and his team will lead to answers.

Much of Red Cell’s movements have been traced since their arrival on Solomon. After their meeting with Inquisitor Marr at the Chancellery Court, they departed via a sky ship named the Cygnan Martyr to a remote volcano island called the House of Dust and Ash. The House of Dust and Ash is an ancient facility manned and operated by ancient charter by a group called the Sorrowful Guild. Due to ancient laws, the location is exempt from planetary and even some Imperial laws and often serves as neutral ground for meetings and exchanges between opposing parties. It takes two days of travel over a huge deadly acidic ocean called the Balemire Sea and I’m told that in addition to the dangerous waters and sudden storms, there are also raiders called Wreckers who prey on sky ships far from the protection of the planet’s security forces.
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Hive records confirm that the Cygnan Martyr did indeed depart on time and I was able to obtain a copy of the ship’s passenger manifest confirming that Red Cell was indeed on board with several other personalities and their accompanying attendants and bodyguards. On the list were a Lord Cistern from Solomon, Lord Melua from Malfi, an Ecclessiarchy official called Tomas of Shale (though I have yet to positively confirm the identity of this individual with the Ministorum), two individuals named Vymer and Quill (who I have traced back as bonded members of the Malfian Bloodsworn assassin guild), and a woman named Octavia Nile (who I have identified from my files as an operative from the tech-heretic cult, the Logicians). Apparently all of these individuals, including Red Cell through their cover identities provided by Marr, were provided with invitations to attend an elite auction of items from the estate of the infamous Rogue Trader Erasmus Haarlock. No doubt that several of these individuals, if not all, are interested in purchasing some of the powerful, and most likely heretical, items that are rumored to have been possessed by the powerful Rogue Trader. This is the second time that Haarlock’s name has turned up in recent investigations, the first was during Red Cell’s investigation of a Chaos Daemon on the planet of Sinophia, and I am beginning to suspect that there is a relation to the two events; to have Red Cell involved in both of these Haarlock incidents leads me to suspect that someone or some force has a hand in these ‘coincidences.’

The house of dust and ashI was unsure whether or not Red Cell made it to the House of Dust and Ash, but I know that Legate Mir and his team are a capable group and was willing to assume that storms and Wreckers would not be enough to stop Red Cell. Of more concern were the reports that I reviewed from the planet’s Geomancer stations of the Adeptus Mechanicus concerning a powerful eruption of the volcano where the House of Dust and Ash is located. The volcano eruption had an estimated force equal to approx. 10 megatons and was accompanied by an earthquake with a seismic rating of 5.7. I had my worries that should Red Cell have made it to the island, they were victims of the volcano. I had to be sure though, so I chartered a sky ship for myself and Razor Cell named the Menoth Rider and made the trip to the island.

The trip was suspiciously uneventful and we made it to the island ahead of schedule. The sight that greeted us was of devastation. Remnants of the volcano’s massive ash column were still present but the House of Dust and Ash, and any other fabricated structures that were on the island, were nowhere to be found- apparently having been obliterated completely in the volcano’s eruption. Some more hardy pieces of wreckage could still be found floating in the acidic sea and on one of these floating debris we found a man barely clinging to life named Shadrack- apparently Captain Shadrack was the captain of the Cygnan Martyr.

Suffering from acidic burns, dehydration, exposure and ash inhalation, Captain Shadrack was babbling all manner of nonsense and it was difficult to separate truth from delirious ranting. BeHe was able to confirm that Red Cell did make it to the island in time for the auction. Though he did not venture into the House of Dust and Ash himself, Shadrack was able to tell me, based on information learned from his crew and inhabitants of the island, that three other sky ships with auction goers arrived at the island. His description of some of these individuals alarmed me, especially a suspensor-borne individual hooked up to various life support apparatus who I believe might be a highly dangerous and wanted heretic named Tobias Belasco. Shadrack told me stories about murders and disappearances at the House of Dust and Ash happening just days prior to the auction taking place and though he himself did not see the items for sale, he heard about them and described various fascinating and horrible ancient artifacts, as well as items that I suspected were Xenos tech.

Shadrack told me how he agreed to wait for Red Cell to take them back to the mainland but never got the chance because the volcano erupted. The eruption and earthquake destroyed everything on the island and sank his sky ship. He was sure that he was the lone survivor of the island’s fury but told me that he was surprised when he observed several shuttles descend on the smoking island and leave. He could not tell me if these shuttles were able to salvage auction items or take survivors. Unfortunately, no more could be learned from Shadrack as his injuries were too grievous and his life functions gave out. His report cannot be ignored though- with the shuttles there is still hope.

  • GM’s Note: This mission was ran with modifications from the adventure found in Fantasy Flight’s “Disciples of the Dark Gods” book. It can be found here:
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"Shadow of Madness"

“They are my Space Marines and they shall know no fear.”

-The Emperor of Mankind

Watch Captain Brand looked out into the infirmary of Watch Fortress Erioch where apothecaries and medical servitors were busy with the treatment of the wounded, many of which were Space Marines from Deathwatch Kill-teams that had recently returned from missions in the Jericho Reach. One such Kill-team, Kill-team Kronus, had most of its team members in the infirmary receiving treatment. Two of them were critically wounded- Brother Aoner (who only by the grace of the Emperor survived a missile salvo) and Brother Erik (whose face had been partially burned from a plasma rifle blast; his helmet had taken the brunt of the blast and it would take a skilled effort by the artificers to restore its protective value again). Luckily, their apothecary, Brother G’heirnat, was present to provide emergency treatment and even now he tended to his Battle-Brothers.
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Captain Brand had yet to review the report by the Kill-team’s Team Leader, Brother G’heirnat, but he had spoken to the Apothecary upon the team’s arrival and learned of the overall success of their mission and the violent battle that took place between the Kill-team and Tau forces led by Shas’El Keyl- a skilled Tau Commander responsible for many of the Tau forward military operations on the contested world of Baraban. A total of four of the Delirium Trellises were located and destroyed by the Kill-team and they were able to acquire valuable data on the make-up and capabilities of the Xenos devices, including their reports of personal experiences they had suffered from the madness inducing effects of the Trellises. This data would be crucial to understanding these strange devices, and possibly provide the start for developing a defense against their powers.

In addition to the completion of their primary and secondary objectives, the Kill-team was also able to prevent the disclosure of information vital to Imperial operations on Baraban and Jericho Reach by terminating a captured Imperial General, General Caroses. This General (who had been thought to be Missing in Action during a Tau engagement) was located by the Kill-team at a base within Tau-controlled territory; apparently, the Kill-team had learned of the existence of the General and the Tau base from a Tau Water Caste Envoy who appeared to have gone mad from his exposure to a Trellis and saw the Kill-team as allies. This Envoy led the Kill-team to the Tau base where the General was in the process of being taken off-world.

The battle that ultimately led to the General’s termination was a desperate one in which the Kill-team took on a numerically superior foe supported by extremely lethal firepower. Their initially plan to bluff their way into the Tau compound with the Envoy’s assistance failed and left the Kill-team’s only option as an all-out attack to neutralize the General before tactically withdrawing back to the cover of the forest. Brother Aoner’s impetuous charge to neutralize a Tau Manta bomber made him a vulnerable target to be laid out by the devastating firepower of Shas’El Keyl’s Crisis Suit. Seeing his fellow Librarian wounded and unconscious, Brother Erik quickly turned from the Tau Fire Warriors he was engaged in melee with and ran to rescue his comrade only to be critically wounded from a plasma rifle blast to the face.

Tau battleThe battle was quickly turning against the Kill-team and after a well-placed sniper shot, from Brother Corvin, was able to dispatch the captured general, the Kill-team’s priority turned to the rescue of their comrades and a tactical withdrawal. Brother Angelos rushed to the fallen Librarians, sustaining several wounds in the process from Tau burst cannons. Brother Lance brought their crippled, but still functional, land speeder on station while Sister Ruby manned the speeder’s massive Astartes Heavy Bolter and began suppressive fire on the Tau Fire Warriors on the roof of the compound. Combined fire from the Kill-team was finally able to eliminate Shas’El Keyl (his demise will further the Imperial war-effort in the region). Brother Corvin started eliminating the Tau personnel that were prepping the Manta for launch and Brother G’heirnat used to his missile launcher to destroy the Tau Sentry Turrets.

Despite the renewed assault, the odds were still against the Kill-team as each of them started to sustain numerous wounds from the Tau’s massed firepower. In a successful ploy to draw some of the attackers away, Brother Lance was able to lure the Tau Hammerhead and Devilfish tanks into pursuing his land speeder into the dense forest where it would have cover and concealment. With the Tau armor no longer on station, Brother G’heirnat took this opportunity to give blinded Brother Erik directions to take Brother Aoner to Brother Angelos’ position where the Assault Marine was able to secure the wounded Librarians and use his jump pack to get all three of them into the concealment of the tree line. Under the covering fire of Brother G’heirnat and Brother Corvin, the Kill-team as able to withdraw and later link up with Brother Lance and Sister Ruby.

Captain Brand considered the Kill-team’s actions and nodded inwardly with approval. The Kill-team had completed their mission, as well as prevented the extradition of a senior Imperial officer, and they did this without fear against a notable enemy force. Their actions were a testament to their courage and prowess as worthy servants of the Emperor.

  • GM’s Note: This mission was ran with modifications from the adventure found in Fantasy Flight’s “The Game Master’s Kit” supplement by Andrea Gausman. It can be found here:
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"Exterminatus Enroute"

“Go! Go! Finish the Mission!”

-Brother G’heirnat, yelling to his teammates as he grimaced from the pain caused by his split kneecap, ripped off bionic arm and missing four fingers, yet he still turned to face the Genestealer.

The Tyranid overrun planet of Tantalus has been designated as lost by the Imperial High Command and sanctioned for Exterminatus. In response, the Deathwatch and Inquisition have deployed four of the Deathwatch’s automated Kill-ships to carry out the task but one of these ships, the “Foe Hammer” has strayed off course and is not responding to controls. Scans show an unknown Xenos presence on the ship and so Kill-Team Kronus and two other kill-teams under the command of Forge Master Greyweaver are dispatched to intercept the ship, assess and neutralize any threats and repair the ship’s malfunctioning systems. Apothecary G’heirnat seizes this opportunity to wield the famed Deathwatch holy relic, the Cruciform of the Crusade, into battle.

After boarding the ship, the kill-teams discover that the ship has been infested by Tyranid forces and begin the dangerous task of cleansing the ship of this Xenos threat. Once the Kill-teams make their way into the ship’s interior, Kill-Team Kronus is tasked with Security Detail while the other Kill-teams, who have Tech Marines under the guidance of Forge Master Grey Weaver, get busy repairing the ship’s navigation systems. After securing several junctions, the kill-team Kronus is sent to investigate an isolated human life sign and upon arrival at the designated location, they find a Sister of Battle asleep in stasis.

Puzzled by the presence of the Sister on a Deathwatch ship, Brother G’heirnat frees the Sister from stasis and she appears to be just as confused as the Space Marines. Sister Ruby remembers being in the Jericho Reach system and remembers going into stasis hibernation but does not remember where she was going or how she came aboard this ship. She is still a faithful servant of the Emperor so, after being explained the situation and the Kill-team’s mission, she joins their cause to lend her Bolter to the fight.

The Kill-team proceeds to their next assignment- to clear a major junction being used by the Tyranids to attack the other kill-teams’ positions and disrupt repair operations. The Battle Brothers (and Sister) begin the deadly and intense task of cleansing the Xenos from the corridors and rooms. They are beset by waves of Termagaunts and Hormagaunts supported by bands of deadly Genestealers. Bolter, Flamer and a huge Aquilla-shaped relic bring death to the Xenos but it is not without costs as many of the Battle Brothers start to sustain injuries. Rest is long in coming as the Kill-Team struggles to complete their task.
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With the junction cleared, the Tech Marines continue repairs on the ship but with the constant hit and run Tyranid attacks hampering progress, Greyweaver decides that the only way to complete the repairs on the ship is by eliminating the Tyranid threat in its entirety. Luckily, Greyweaver has brought with him several canisters of an experimental toxin that was created using the data stored in Magos Vyakai’s data-core. The canisters are hooked up to the ship’s air circulation system and it is hoped that with every nook and cranny of the ship’s interior filled with the gas, the toxin will kill the Tyranids after prolonged exposure.

Unfortunately, Kill-team Delgado is attacked and nearly decimated while hooking up the final control switch and Kill-Team Kronus is dispatched to activate the final switch and rescue any survivors. The kill-team’s fight to the control switch is an epic battle for survival as the Tyranid forces, under the command of a Broodlord, make the Kill-team pay dearly for every stretch of corridor and room they cross. Brother Angelous is ambushed and nearly killed by the Broodlord and it is only by the luck of the Emperor that he is able to survive. Supported by Brother Lance, the two Space Marines battle the Broodlord using every bit of skill at their disposal, as well as strength from the Emperor, to defeat the Tyranid monster. The rest of the kill-team continues to their objective with Brother Corvus clearing the way with fire from his Heavy Flamer. Hordes of Hormagaunts fall to the flames but surrounded and a little scattered, the kill-team is locked in a desperate battle to succeed. Brother G’heirnat attempts a heroic rearguard action to fight off Genestealers only to lose four fingers and the use of his bionic arm before he collapses. Brother Angelous soon follows- his body also wracked by grievous injuries.

The remaining Tech Marine from Kill-Team Delgado is able to activate the switch before he is killed by Genestealers. Everyone in the team, included Sister Ruby, are seriously wounded but they are able to exit the ship carrying their critically wounded comrades as poison gas fills the ship’s interior. The gas proves to be a success (for the time being until the Tyranid biology is able to adapt) and with the ship free of infestation, the rest of the repairs can be completed. “Foe Hammer” is able to link up with the other four Kill-ship’s for execution hour and with the deployment of their Cyclone Torpedoes, Tantalus is no more.
Exterminatus

  • GM’s Note: This mission was created by the GM and inspired by Games Workshop’s discontinued board game “Space Hulk.”
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"Extraction"

“Falcon Punch!!”

-Brother Angelos, speaking in limited conversation with a Genestealer during a bare-knuckle fight.

The Space Marines of Kill-Team Kronus are activated for a priority mission. Their task is to locate and rescue Magos Biologis Vyakai whose shuttle has crash landed on the southern pole of the planet of Tantalus- a planet that has been overrun by Tyranids of Hive Fleet Dagon. Magos Vyakai has valuable genetic data concerning the organisms of Hive Fleet Dagon and retrieval of this information would be extremely valuable to the Imperium’s Weapons Research and Development sections.

Nominating Brother G’heirmant as their team leader, and welcoming three new Battle Brothers, Brother Angelos (of the Alpha Scars Chapter), Brother Erik (of the Imperial Fists Chapter) and Brother Corvin (of the Raven Guard Chapter), to fill the kill-team’s ranks, the Space Marines descend to the Magos’ last known position- a promethium facility called Pyroclast Gamma-9. The blizzard conditions prove to hinder the search and rescue effort, and with a huge vanguard swarm of Tyranids approaching the facility, the Kill-team must make haste.

Using a systematic search method, the Kill-Team starts from the south eastern end of the facilty and begins a counter-clockwise sweep. They meet fierce resistance from scattered bands of Tyranid advance forces and come across the bodies of both the facility’s inmate prison workers,guards and Tyranids that have all been victims of each other or the few automated defenses still functioning.
Blizzard background by kagekia
Kill-Team Kronus finally locates the Magos taking refuge in the command center of the facility guarded by two combat servitors. The Kill-team is attacked by the heavily wounded Magos and his guards who initially assesses the Kill-Team as a threat but during the melee a larger threat presents itself when Lictors attack the Space Marines. After a messy combat, the Battle-Brothers are victorious and the Kill-Team is able to convince the Magos they are there to help.

With Brother G’heirnat carrying the wounded tech-Priest on his back the Kill-team makes its way to the main refinery facility in order to rig some type of castastrophic detonation to deined the Tyranids the resources of the facility. Inside the refinery, the Kill-team discovers a large concentration of inmate workers that have taken up refuge in the facility and are not interested in leaving. A rousing warning of pending Exterminatus by Brother G’heirnat is enough to make some of the thugs flee but the majority of the criminal scum, led by a hardcore ganger, are not scared. A battle soon erupts and the battle brothers are quickly able to dispatch the thugs with miminal damage. A makeshift explosive chain reaction is rigged with the assistance of Magos Vyakai, and the main refinery facility, as well as the outside storage tanks, explode in a massive ball of flame. The Kill-team then makes haste to their extraction point on top of a hill with a communications tower.

Hive tyrant by zen masterAfter calling for extraction via Thunderhawk, the Kill-team takes up a defensive perimeter to await their ride. In the distance, approaching in the sky, is a massive winged Hive Tyrant and accompanying Shrike Tyranid Warriors. Brother G’heirnat orders his brothers into an effective defensive posture while Brother Corvin and Brother Erik fire Heavy Bolter and psychic-fueled death at their enemies. The Tyranids return the favor, wounding the Space Marines with acid and organic weapons that constrict and choke their targets. The battle is fierce and it appears that the Kill-team is gaining the upper hand on their foes, but the sudden appearance of their Thunderhawk has the Hive Tyrant and its surviving escort go into full retreat. The Thunderhawk takes Kill-Team Kronus and Magos Vyakai, back to the Thunder’s Word. Right before breaking through the clouds to space, the Space Marines watch the massive horde of the Tyranid vanguard forces sweep into Pyroclast-Gamma-9.

  • GM’s Note: This mission was ran with modifications from the adventure found in Fantasy Flight’s Deathwatch core rulebook. It can be found here:
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