Faith and Betrayal
Inquiries on Solomon
Hive Gloriana – Solomon
Sanctionary Precinct One
Roach stood silently, studying the stack of papers falling through his fingers. The desks around him were crammed with data slates, folders, and maps detailing his master’s movements across the hive’s many floors. As the many Sanctionaries and scribes scurried around the precinct’s floor, the stacks of folders fluttered and swayed, threatening to crash to the floor.
“Lieutenant Bries,” Roach called, stopping a young Sanctionary passing by, “Take these logistical reports downstairs. We’ll need to move those suspects quickly before riots erupt.” The young officer nodded and grabbed the folder before rushing down the nearby hallway.
Roach smiled warily as he eyed the man standing on the other side of the desk. His charcoal skin seemed to fade into shadow beneath his cloaks hood, the only evidence of light was the glint of the Arbite’s badge protruding from beneath the fabric. Despite his obvious impatience, Roach’s guest had been standing quietly for nearly half an hour despite the madhouse around them.
“Amsterdam!” Roach greeted the man with a warm exterior, “I’m glad to finally meet you. I’ve heard remarkable things about your time on Sozomen’s. Some of my old bunkmates have worked with you in the fight against the Kasbillica— nasty business that.” Roach shook his head as he spoke, a look of genuine sadness plastered across his face. “Perhaps you remember them, Miller, Spencer, Jaq’kaul?”
“Jaq’kaul…” Amsterdam spoke softly, “He was a good man.”
“A good Arbite!” Roach cheered aloud as another Sanctionary thrust a data slate before him, needing a signature. He continued to speak as he scanned the device. “I hear you were the one to pull his body from the rubble, can’t thank you enough for that. Too many of us have been lost in that fight, forever buried alone in the dark.” Amsterdam nodded, but remained silent. As the Sanctionary scurried away, Roach’s face hardened.
“How rude of me to keep you waiting for so long. As you can see,” He said, sweeping his arm around the papers littering his desk, “managing my lord Rykehuss’ campaign across the hive has been a never-ending ordeal for me. Interrogation reports, prisoner transfers, the allocation of the planetary enforcers, not to mention the Administratum’s blockade for all my requisition orders… A nightmare really. Thankfully, the staff here are fully dependable and quick to mobilize. It reminds me of my time in the Adeptus Arbites—surrounded by good men, doing the Emperor’s work.”
“But I’m sure you’re not here to reminisce about the past." Roach continued, "I suspect you’re wondering-”
“When will Sand’s men be released?” Amsterdam’s words cut the aged Arbite off midsentence. Roach’s lips curled slightly, but he shook it off.
“Rykehuss has ordered the release of the priest, the assassin, and the, uh, steward… Fully cleared of any wrongdoing and demonic taint… The girl is causing some problems I’m afraid… Last I heard, she had bit one of the officers overseeing her transfer. Quite bewildering, actually— almost like a feral animal.”
“And the underhiver?” Amsterdam pressed, but Roach merely shook his head.
“I’m sure you’re aware Rykehuss won’t be letting that one go…” The two men stared at each other for a moment in silence. Amsterdam’s eyes were narrow, clearly attempting to come up with a scheme to turn the situation in his favor. Roach wasn’t about to let that happen. With a casual sigh, he pulled a small folder stuffed with files from the desk drawer and held it out to his companion.
“Here. It’s not much, but it’s what I could scrape together. Interviews, evidentiary reports, even some of the bloodwork scan’s we had taken. Most of it is heavily redacted, you understand, but consider it an olive branch—in the interest of departmental cooperation.” Amsterdam hesitated for a moment before slowly reaching out and tugging at the folder.
“He was my mission, Roach. What am I supposed to tell my lord?” The two men stood firm, each with a tight grip on the folder locked between them. Roach smiled slightly as he pulled Amsterdam a few inches closer.
“Tell him there was a cave-in, and you weren’t able to find anything in the rubble.” After a tense moment, Roach released his grip on the folder and Amsterdam rocked backwards slightly. “Well, it was good to meet you, but I really must get back to my work.”
Roach snapped his fingers, and two large enforcers flanked either side of Amsterdam. “See the Constable here makes it safely to shuttle bay 87, I believe his transport leaves in a few hours and I wouldn’t want him to be late.”
There was another moment of hesitation from Amsterdam. His brown eyes darted down the hallway toward the interrogation cells, and for a moment Roach was convinced the man would make a break for it. However, in the end the Constable thought better of it, and with a court nod, turned and departed the precinct without fuss. With a final dismissing grin, Roach once again threw himself into the hornet’s nest around him as the surrounding Sanctionaries continued their work under his watchful eye.