Lu'Nasad- Part V

To call 41 Pry a space station was a compliment. Sure, the massive and barely operational orbital over the planet of Pry still provided basic life-support functions in large sections of its derelict infrastructure and there was even a significant community of vagabonds, outlaws and unfortunate souls that couldn’t afford passage to escape their confines that made the structure home, but 41 Pry was far from the splendor and importance that it enjoyed thousands of years ago when Pry served as an important distribution hub during the crusade to take the Calixis Sector. Now only pirates, disreputable merchants, and anyone else seeking a location far from the eyes of officials visited the place. It was for these very reasons that Inquisitor Tibieus Volk had requested it as the location for the exchange.

He strode out from one of the many side corridors that lead into one of the orbital’s massive storage bays. Back in the times of the crusade this bay would have been filled wall-to-wall and floor-to-ceiling with all manner of supplies dedicated to supporting the war effort, but now it was relatively empty with only thick layers of dust, some scattered and broken rusty mechanical parts and what looked like a small mountain of rotting canvas in one corner, which Volk suspected were what was left of a large collection of the massive tents that Imperial Guard and PDF forces sometimes used as temporary housing during campaigns.

Behind him, four additional figures followed their master. One of them was clad in the red robes of a Mechanicus Tech-Priest and his body had a collection of cybernetic and bionic attachments. He was actively scanning the area with his green-glowing bionic eyes and the barrel of his hellgun. Likewise, a carapace-armored man wearing a black storm coat and wielding a combat shotgun and an arbitrator shield scanned the rafters above while standing protectively close to the Inquisitor. The last two figures looked pretty nonchalant about the meeting- one was a heavily tattooed woman with extremely pale skin and jet-black hair gelled into spikes smoking an Ilho-stick and the other was a well-dressed and handsome man in his thirties that had a look of noble bearing. This man carried a thick tome with reinforced metal covers and gold edging clasped with a archaic-looking cypher lock.

Inquisitor Volk and his retinue crossed the distance of the massive open bay to the center where two figures stood waiting. One was a huge man, his normally tall and stocky adult stature made more massive by the suit of power armor that he wore protecting all but his head. The other figure looked quite diminutive next to his massive comrade and wore an elegantly tailored red-colored ensemble that made him look like a stage magician.

The two groups met and studied each other for several long serious seconds before the power armored man broke the silence, “Inquisitor Volk, let’s be done with this and on our separate ways.”

Volk produced his hand out to his tech-priest, which placed a data-stick into it. He offered this stick to the power armored man before pulling his hand back, “Inquisitor Reginalt, I’ve showed you mine, now show me yours as the prostitutes in Frevlin Hive are fond of saying.”

The man showed no humor as he produced a data-stick of his own and offered it to Volk. The two Inquisitors swapped their offerings and each passed them back to the men behind them- Volk’s tech-priest and Reginalt’s red-attired man both inserted the sticks into data-slates and began scanning their contents. Both Inquisitors stared at each other while their men worked.

“It’s as I said,” Volk told Reginalt, “and you can cross-check that data with your channels. Augur arrays and psychic scans along the Warp and real-space transit routes will confirm what I’ve provided.”

“You have no qualms about providing this evidence against Sand? My sources tell me that you have a close friendship with him and they say you regard him as your best pupil. If your data is corroborated to show that he is indeed responsible for stealing Subject Four, than you know his life will be forfeit. The Illuminati will take back what is theirs and kill Sand, and anyone else he might have remotely exposed to this matter.”

Volk had a pained expression on his face. “It was hard to provide this, but it was the only price your master would agree to in order to give me to get what I wanted.” He turned to his tech-priest, “Status?”

The tech-priest studied the screen for several more seconds before replying, “the DNA sequence is different than previous samples, but it contains many similarities to the last two samples we have examined.”

“I assure you its authentic” Reginalt stated. "We have the most accurate samples of the Emperor’s DNA sequence. As you know, since you sought our assistance, our organization is among the oldest in the Inquisition and our “purview” makes the accuracy of this data most important. There are no true comparisons except what we can provide, so you have no choice but to take our word on the matter."

“Then our meeting is adjourned it would seem,” Volk responded.

Reginalt smiled momentarily before his face broke into alarm as the sound of automatic fire erupted in the rafters and catwalks above. Three bodies clad in camoline suits fell from above and landed with sickening thuds on the floor only a few feet away. Inquisitor Reginalt drew a melta pistol in one hand and a power sword in the other- his armor not hindering his speed at all. His melta blast super-heated the air as it shot at Volk who, to Reginalt’s amazement, moved with lightning fast reflexes that a man of seventy plus years should not possess. The side step and somersault took Volk out of the melta pistol’s line of fire, but his handsome tome-wielding acolyte was not so lucky as the he was caught totally by surprise by the turn of events and stared in shock just before the melta pistol blast incinerated his face.

“Firebreak,” Volk’s carapace armored acolyte yelled as he stepped forward with his shield forward in defensive position and his combat shotgun locked in place so he could fire one handed. The rapid succession of automatic shotgun rounds hammered at the the armored form of Reginalt whose armor deflected the hits.

The rest of Volk’s acolytes started falling back while the shield-bearing acolyte covered their retreat with a steady volley of shotgun rounds. Above and on the ground floor, more figures converged on the area engaged in ranged and close combat. A hail of gun and las fire targeted Volk and in a dazzling acrobatic display, the Inquisitor dodged all the shots directed at him while drawing a strange pistol in one hand and a sword in the other. Upon landing cat-like on his feet he aimed and fired the gun at eight approaching carapaced armored men. A cone of electromagnetic energy engulfed the men and they fell dying while their bodies convulsed and vomited.

Volk’s tech-priest collapsed to the ground as several bolts of Warp energy shot from Reginalt’s red-attired acolyte and the rest of Volk’s acolytes quickly started dragging his unconscious form away. The red-attired man grinned with glee and was then cut down by a succession of shotgun blasts that torn him apart.

“Go!” Volk yelled to his remaining acolyte and the shield and shotgun bearing acolyte didn’t show any hesitation as he left his master and ran after the others.

Volk engaged in a ballet of death with his sword and exotic pistol as Reginalt and what seemed like a small army of well-armed and armored soldiers surrounded him. Volk’s sword cut through carapace like paper and many bodies lay dead from precision cuts and slashes that only someone with extensive training in the killing arts could achieve. While Volk was preoccupied, Reginalt had been able to strike Volk a couple of times with his sword, but the man showed no sign of slowing down despite the cuts he had received. Reginalt too had been injured by Volk’s blade as well and was surprised when he found his armor to be no protection at all from Volk’s sword, which pierced his armor as if it wasn’t there. Reginalt was able to to shrug off the vicious effects of Volk’s pistol through sheer force of will, but the sword worried him. Now only Volk and Reginalt remained in the bay of congealed blood and dead bodies.

“Did you men shoot first, or did mine?” Reginalt asked Volk.

“Does it matter?” Volk replied. “It seems we both had the same idea…only one of our groups was leaving this meeting.”

“That’s true” Reginalt replied, “but I thought I was dealing with Tibieus Volk, but you are not him. Volk is a extraordinary psyker and I came prepared for that, but you have yet to manifest any powers though your swordsmanship is degrees beyond what I’ve seen from all but the most accomplished swordsmen.”

Volk stared at Reginalt and his form and visage morphed into a lithe black body glove-clad woman with a long braid of reddish hair. Reginalt looked into the blank black mask of the assassin that was no longer Volk and whispered “Callidus” just as Syndalla charged at him.

Lu'Nasad- Part V

Faith and Betrayal taddow taddow