Serpens VI Infestation

From Cetus
Jump to: navigation, search
Gas Mining.jpg

A Deathwatch mission to Serpens VI

Briefing

+++ Date: 2.473.034.M42
+++ Ref: 456479746865/48696e7a6572
+++ Author: Inquisitor Edythe Hinzer, Ordo Xenos Achernar
+++ Recipient: Watch-Captain Lucius Valarian, Hydraphur, Caerostrum
+++ Via: Astropathic duct 8ξ-21 location REDACTED
+++ Re: Petition for deployment
+++ Thought: Mercy is an overrated virtue.

+++Greetings Watch-Captain.

+++As I am sure you are aware, the aftermath of Kursanov Prime continues to be felt. As a direct result of intelligence acquired through the data uplink, many ships have been stopped, quarantined, searched and purged before they could dock with any other facilities. Of these, two had to be completely destroyed when they attempted to ram and board Imperial vessels. A complete list is provided below:

+++request inload of full naval reporting Y/N?+++

+++Only three vessels had time to transfer any cargo or personnel: Bellerophon; Memorium of Paracus and Voidstrider IX. The Memorium continues to elude us; it did not make its stated rendezvous with orbital dockyards at Titawin IV and is at large. That is the navy’s problem for now. I and my specialists are handling the Voidstrider and the Agri-world of Situla III that has been possibly infected. I humbly request your aid in dealing with the trail of the Bellerophon as its destination is within fast picket range of your watch-fortress. Imperial forces managed to disable the Bellerophon and boarded. The owner and officers were screened for xenos influence and remanded in custody for interrogation. The vessel was opened to vacuum for three days and then any surviving xenos presence was annihilated by armsmen teams.

+++Xenotyping of the remains confirms origin was the Kursanov strain. The last and mercifully only halting place on Bellerophon’s logs was the gas-mining facility on Serpens VI. Operated by Ortag-Imperial on behalf of the system governor, the Serpens VI mines produce millions of gallons of fuel and other organic precursor chemicals per cycle. Loss of the tribute that this world provides is unacceptable to the Imperium. Sadly, the entire population of Serpens VI numbers less than 4,000,000 spread across different work platforms and the central hab structure with a minimal internal defensive force. The particular facility that concerns us is Port Ortag. This is the only station capable of receiving interstellar traffic at its high anchor Tsiolkovsky tower and is thus the route in of any infection and sadly the route out of all the work product of Serpens VI. There are reports of unrest at Port Ortag – population 52,000 – and the Foreman Princeps is requesting aid. Rather than send Serpens III PDF troopers unfamiliar with the conditions to the platforms I propose instead to supplement the Ortag forces with a minimum of one Deathwatch Kill Team and thus take the brunt of any specialist fighting on the ample shoulders of the Emperor’s most lethal forces.

+++The expected conditions are likely to be close confines potentially with delicate and dangerous machinery or massively hazardous external environments. Local forces are Ortag Imperial security forces, comparable with Imperial Guard, armed with light weapons unlikely to damage the facility. Please assist the Emperor’s Loyal Forces in putting down this rebellion in any way necessary.

+++Further data files with extant information on involved parties appended to this communique.

+++May the Emperor bless your endeavours.

+++Inquisitor Edythe Hinzer
+++Ordo Xenos Achernar

+++MESSAGE ENDS

+++inload attached files Y/N?+++
+++Downloading attached files………….100%+++
+++Report on Serpens System, Achernar Sector+++

Communications

+++FROM: Elias, brother-sergeant
+++TO: Inquisitor Gregory Michael
+++SUBJECT: xenos beacons
+++ASTROPATHIC RELAY: Alpha-1/tym-aus/368954
+++THOUGHT FOR THE DAY: Some have said that to venture outside the tactica imperialis risks folly, and yet newly encountered xenos breeds require new tactics.

Dear Inquisitor,

We were alerted to another piece of fallout from the Kursanov Prime infestation by an Ordo Xenos Inquisitor, Edythe Hinzer. Is she known to you?

Her intelligence was good. A gas mining facility was lousy with genestealer infestation. We cleansed it. If you wish for more detail than that, ask me next time we meet.

What I wished to share is one of their strategies. It has implications. These concern me.

They hijacked the facility's astropaths, and used them as a beacon. Brother Hytius has faced a similar psychic projection before. The implication is this: genestealers are a vanguard for the Tyranids, and they can use human psykers to further their goals. Does this mean there is a Tyranid fleet here? Near Achernar? I have had no reports of such.

There is more. The astropaths controlled us. Made us see things. They tricked us into butchering loyal citizens. When we realised, I believe I experienced a new emotion: guilt. My brothers seem to have accepted what happened, but I cannot. We avenged the self-harm many times over, but I must be able to trust my own senses if I am to fight the foe. Do you know of some way to do this? I wish to learn if so.

Sincerely,
Elias

P.S. Ecclesiarch to Castle 9.

+++MESSAGE ENDS


+++FROM: Inquisitor Gregory Michael
+++TO: Elias, brother-sergeant
+++SUBJECT: RE: xenos beacons

Dear Elias,

Thank you for letting me know. I have read similar theories on Hydraphur, suggesting that Genestealers are an advance scout and infiltrator, weakening worlds for Tyranid invasion. If you find yourself back there, I suggest you speak to Inquisitor Charal, he could point you in the direction of some well-respected treatises. Alternatively reading up on the aftermath of the Battle of Macragge may be more your speed.

As terrible as this may seem, if the theories are correct then we may not be in immediate danger of Tyranid invasion. Lord Inquisitor Kryptman himself theorised that the Genestealers are not themselves aware of their part in forming a beacon. They simply spread wherever they can, and when a Genestealer cult reaches maturity, begin to unitingly send out a beacon for any hive fleet to detect, since a world with a mature Genestealer cult will be particularly vulnerable to Tyranid invasion.

It’s a complex theory, and I recommend you read up on it, but if true then there is no reason to suspect there is a Tyranid fleet nearby. That said, if there is a Tyranid fleet nearby, and the beacon spread far enough to reach it, they may be drawn towards the world. I’m sure I don’t have to tell you the value of knowing where an enemy will be ahead of time.

I am not familiar with Inquisitor Hinzer, is she based in the Scyrian Expanse? I was not aware of another Ordo Xenos Inquisitor in the region. Are you able to put me in touch with her? I would like to discuss this with her further.

As to your other concern, I wish there was more I can say to console you. These things happen in war. I’ve seen men accidentally shoot fellow soldiers, and innocent bystanders. The 5th Thoratis are infantry, so for them it was an occasional tragic accident resulting in the loss of one or two lives. I know of two officers whose artillery companies fired upon friendly forces under their orders with devastating effect. One of them committed suicide. The other was made of sterner stuff and resolved to dedicate his life to making up for his mistake.

Speaking personally, I have ordered many men to their deaths, and sometimes it was the wrong order and the deaths were wasted. I have also killed people who were potentially innocent, so as to protect a greater number of innocents. This is the lot of the Imperial Guard, they do not have the Emperor given abilities of the Astartes and must spend the lives of our soldiers to achieve our goals. I’m sure my time there has hardened me somewhat, but I am not immune to guilt. I console myself that whilst I am not perfect, many others would be far worse in my position.

Ask yourself this, what if it had not been you and your team? What if a lesser unit, perhaps some Imperial Guardsmen or Naval Security forces had been dispatched? How many more would have died? Indeed, would that world now be lost to the Imperium entirely?

As for psychic defence, I have heard of something. Certain Hexagrammic wards can protect the bearer from psychic attacks, at least partially. I can’t say I know anyone capable of creating them, but it’s something you could try to look into. I would suggest you speak with Eidan about it, this is more his area of expertise than mine.

Sincerely,
Michael

P.S. Divinarch to Primarch 8

+++MESSAGE ENDS


+++FROM: Elias
+++TO: Gregory Michael
+++SUBJECT: re: xenos beacons

Dear Inquisitor,

I believe that is check mate. Never have I seen the Divinarch used in such a fashion. I thought myself proficient at this game, but clearly I have things to learn. At least I am glad it was not a bloodless victory for you. I have reset my board. Citizen 3 to Ecclesiarch 3.

As to the other matter, what gave me concern is the implicit trust I used to have in my own senses. For an Astartes, imprecision in battle is shameful but possible. One can see how they occur, and one can take steps to reduce the risk. But how can I resist when my own senses can be remade by the will of a psyker? I must investigate these wards. Eidan had mentioned their use before, though I am uncertain if he had the skill to inscribe them. Perhaps he has learned since I left the Trojan. I will ask him. Thank you. I must be able to trust my own eyes.

Of course, I cannot be sure I am really talking to you. Perhaps the illusion persists, and I am not perceiving time correctly. All things are possible where the warp is concerned. Perhaps my body fights Imperial citizens even now, while my mind is locked away in a construct designed to distract me from the truth. If that is the case, you would of course reassure me that it is not so, for you are another element of the illusion.

There are times when I miss the guidance of a chaplain. It has been some time since I… left the Templars Errant.

I suppose religious priests would be your equivalent. Do you speak to a priest? I know Drake doesn't, but I always wondered who performs that function for him. Jentiva, perhaps.

Sincerely,
Elias

+++MESSAGE ENDS


+++FROM: Inquisitor Gregory Michael
+++TO: Elias, brother-sergeant
+++SUBJECT: RE: xenos beacons

Dear Elias,

I must beg forgiveness for my tardy response, your latest missive got buried under some less important paperwork which has taken me until now to get around to dealing with and rediscover your correspondence.

Let us open with Citizen 4 to Divinitarch 4.

You may be pleased to learn that after a long stakeout several agents of the Inquisition stationed here at the Obelisk have taken up regicide. If they stick with it, by the time you next visit you may find some more opponents worthy of your time.

I do not generally speak to a priest, the priests assigned to the Imperial Guard tended towards mindless stiring of fervour amongst the non-commissioned masses rather than complex ethical debate. It has, I assume unfairly, left me wary of them. However I have a Sister of the Orders Hospitaller amongst my staff and whilst she is primarily a physician, I find her faith tempered with the honest and practical toil of her profession to be ideally suited to my needs. We are not yet very close as we are new to each other, but I feel she could grow to be a great spiritual support to me in the years to come.

You are quite right that Drake does not have a priest. I believe Jentiva is a close confident, but I am not certain she would fill his spiritual needs. She was once a Death Cultist, and I do not feel that is the sort of spirituality a good Inquisitor should indulge in, and it does not seem to be Drake's way. The two of us have been getting closer however, and I belief a fellow Inquisitor he can trust may be exactly what he needs. Unfortunately this has been on hold as he has been away some time cleaning up a horrible mess elsewhere.

Forgive my bringing it up again, but you never told me if you would be able to put me in touch with Inquisitor Hinzer. Do you know of some way I could contact her, or are you able to forward my details to her and ask her if she would contact me?

Sincerely,
Michael

+++MESSAGE ENDS


+++FROM: Elias
+++TO: Gregory Michael
+++SUBJECT: re: xenos beacons

Dear Inquisitor,

Inquisitor Hynzer did not provide contact details. Has she not made herself known at the Obelisk? Perhaps she is secretive. At the least you could send a message to Caerostrum in Hydraphur; she would receive that eventually, though it could be months. Or years.

As to spiritual matters, I have found some common ground with Kinnarion Agni, a brother of the Salamanders. We have discussed our experiences. It has been productive, if faltering compared to the guidance of a chaplain.

Sincerely,
Elias

P.S. Citizen 3 to Ecclesiarch 4.

+++MESSAGE ENDS

Personal tools
Namespaces

Variants
Actions
Navigation
Toolbox