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Rise of a Salamander
Kra-Kal squinted through the sooty blackness of midday Nocturne, the sunlight dimmed by the ever lingering ashes and vapor released by the thousands of volcanoes that littered that surface of his planet. He looked for any trace of the Orks that had recently attempted to take the bunker that his squad was trying to hold. As a Recruit of the Fith Company, Salamander chapter, and a Veteran Sergeant, all he could do was wait until either they were given new orders or were attacked by the seemingly endless horde of the current Waggggg! that threatened his home world.
They were caught off guard three months ago by the glorious return of the 3rd company after they had come back from a rumor of a found (imperial factory). None was found, but they had also discovered a hidden outpost of Tau that was spying on Imperial emplacements. After defeating the mild resistances, they were about to head back, but were encountered by a Dark Eldar fleet that was traveling through the area and defeated them, even though they were faced with overwhelming odds. When they returned, some cursed fool forgot to set the gun servitors before going back to the party to welcome back missed friends. Because Kra-Kal did not have any friends in 3rd company, as all were in 5th with him, he and some friends went around and ate the food and drank the drinks, probably a little more than they should have.
He was ripped away from this memory as the vox-caster started to emit static as the machine spirit inside attempted to understand the message being sent.
“Kra-Kal, how you holding out in their?” Kra-Kal took the mike in his hand and said
“Great, for now, how is your squad doing Veartres?”
“Were fine, listen, there are new orders for you, two new Tactical Squads are going to come and help reinforce your position along with a Dreadnaught and a Devastator squad.”
“Thanks, but why, we haven’t been attacked for some time now.
“Sensors indicate Orks headed on your position, and there’s allot. Hell, I almost envy you brother for the battle you will soon see, Veatres out. Kra-Kal put down the mike and turned to his squad. “Alright men” he started. “We have got new orders. Reinforcements are coming here to help us out. Sensors show that a large Ork force is getting ready to move on our position. HQ has sent two tactical more squads, a devastator squad and a dreadnaught to help us out. Yes Draken?
“Sir” he began “why is this position so important that we need these men to come help us reinforce it, could we just fall back and defend against a stronger point?” His question raised a small murmur around the squad until it looked like Kra-Kal was about to respond.
“I do not know that for certain, actually, I don’t know at all. But, it does not matter, for we are but servants of the emperor, and we do not ask our master questions. Until the reinforcement come, we have nothing to do but wait and load our guns, Yarken, you’ve got first watch.”
“But I just had it a second ago!” protested Yarken.
“I know” smiled Kra-Kal,
“Gosh, sleep through one raid and you hear about it forever.” muttered Yarken as he climbed the latter grimly. His remark raised a small laugh through the squad.
Kra-Kal took in there present situation for the fourth time. The bunker was a normal octagonal shape with gun slits on every side. The door was plated with reinforced steel and there was a look out post on the top, which could serve as a place for snipers or the devastator squad. He supposed the dreadnaught could fit in the middle through the vehicle door way and that it could fire its assault cannon through one of the slits. Every Marine was equipped with a chain sword, a combat knife, a frag grenade dispenser, a bolt pistol, a bolt gun, and some clips. They had been holding the bunker for about 5 days now and they had only lost one space marine. Foolish Ken, thought the Orks were dead and went out to get the combat knife he had thrown at one, and took a shoota in the head. They had grieved for a couple of days while waiting for an apocrathary to take out his precious gene seed and put it in the chapter’s vaults. There were minimal losses reported from other squads, so they expected that they were winning. “But how did they get through our orbital defenses?” he wondered. “What if... NO, he wouldn’t think that a traitor was in there mist!?”
He was interrupted by a slamming hand on the door “Anyone home?” said the voice. Kra-Kal hit the opening mechanism and let in the 3 squads, Yarken activated the sequence that would let the dreadnaught in. Kra-Kal was happy to see it had a dreadnaught power fist and a twin linked assault cannon. If they were breached, it would come in handy.
“Sir, you are highest command here, as you are a veteran sergeant, what are your orders!”
Kra-Kal thought for a moment. “Devastator squad Shlom, set up with Yarken in the observation tower, he will be your spotter.” They nodded and started to haul there weapons up the ladder. “Tactical squad Deatrus and Actrus, you will stay down here and help us. Honorable dreadnaught Horell, set up where you believe you are best needed.” It nodded its bulk and walked to a slit in the wall and hefted its massive assault cannon and locked it in place. Squad leaders ordered their men to tactical advantages. Kra-Kal kept his own squad where it was. He noticed with pleasure that Draken had put the squads flamer in a resting position near the door so that if the Orks got to close, they would be smited with the holy flame of the emperor. Every squad in the salamander chapter had a flamer, as was the will of their lost Primarch, Vulkan. “Still” he thought “why is this position so important?” but he was not one to ask questions.
He was ripped from his thoughts by the sound of the lascannon being fired and he looked out a slit to see the smoking remains of an Ork dreadnaught. The dreadnaught Horell open fired on the advancing Orks, laying waste to many of them. The space marines followed suit, firing the bolters at the four round burst they were set at. He heard the rapid shots of two heavy bolters from above and he started shooting as well. He caught a Gretchen sniper in his sights, and shot at it, but not before it shot Deatrus in the left elbow. His wound clotting quickly, he hefted his bolter with one hand and shot it, even though it caused him much pain with every kick. His squad mate, Qural turned to him and said “We will see these Orks dead ye-.” He was cut of as his head was blown of in a shower of gore from a missile shot at the bunker. The gory death of his friend and squad mate compelled him to fight harder. A lone Ork had made his way to the wall of the bunker and yelled a war cry in Kar-Kal’s face until his head was crushed by the power fist of Horell. Horell was not like most Salamander dreadnaughts, a silent bulk. He had a vox mike embedded in his armor. He had required it before he had lost consciousness prior to his placement in the dreadnaught shell. “He wont yell at you anymore brother.” said Horell. Kra-Kal nodded his agreement and took some weight off of an Ork’s shoulders. A Space Marine slumped to the ground next to him, ripped to shreds by many bullet holes. Kra-Kal looked out and saw the Warboss himself standing amid his guard. He thought he saw an Astartes out there conversing with the Warboss and then cut down by it, but quickly put that thought out of his mind. He looked through his sights at the Warboss and took several shots at its head. The shots bounced off and the Warboss turned around and sounded a battle cry. He charged down the hill and a massive charge began. Huge missiles slammed into the door, knocking it off its hinges. Kra-Kal knew he had to meet them out in the open, or face vicious closed quarters fighting in their bunker.
“For Vulkan” yelled Kra-Kal as he pulled out his chain sword and charged to meet the oncoming horde of Orkish filth. The Space Marines followed suit and pulled out their chain swords, charging after him. Kra-Kal met the first Ork with a stab in his face, roaring his sword to life after it was embedded in it. He brought it out through the top of its head and shot a bolt into the nearest Orks face. A Gretchen jumped on his leg and tried to stab him with a rusty knife. He kicked it off and cut another Ork at the waist, rolling under the lifeless legs and shot a bolt into the belly of another Ork before slashing it through the face. The space Marines next to him were doing the same, slashing and cutting. But they were taking their toll too. Already, Kra-Kal noticed three bodies of fallen marines. Kra-Kal saw the Warboss and his guard attempting to get in the fray as well. He slashed and cut, shot and killed, until he was closed enough to the Warboss to begin his confrontation. “Over here!” he yelled, shooting it in the back. It roared in agony and turned to face him. Only three of its guard was left and they started to charge him, but were waved back by the Warboss. “This ones mine!” it yelled. It charged at him, axe raised high and cut at him with a swooping arc from above. Kra-Kal parried and slammed the butt of his pistol onto the Warbosses sword hand. It smiled and grabbed his hand instead. He Warboss was about to slam him into the ground but its hand was cut off by Kra-Kals chain sword. He ducked low and cut at his legs in an ark, but his attack was parried by the axe he failed to disarm from its hand. The Warboss kicked Kra-Kal in the stomach and backhanded him in the face. Even though the pain it caused him, Kra-Kal landed on his feat and shot three bolts into its stomach. Kra-Kal raised his arm to swing at him again, but realized his sword was gone. He saw it in the ground about twenty meters to his left. He started to run for his sword, but it was blown away by a gun as he felt three pulses in his chest. He quickly pulled out his combat knife and lunged at the Warboss. He slashed its face across the right eye then cut it upward in an offhand hit. He jumped back and threw it at its already ruined face. It hit its left eye and the Warboss sunk to its knees, not knowing if it was dead or not. Kra-Kal took his bolt pistol and shot it in the face twice, making the decision for him. He turned around and the Warbosses guard just stared.
“Who wants some!” offered Kra-Kal. They just turned and ran, the other Orks following suite once they found out what happened.
Kra-Kal suddenly fell to the ground and notice the bullet holes he had in his chest. It had narrowly missed his primary heart but had punctured one of his lungs. An Apocrathary ran up to him later to assist him.
“You should be fine brother, your lung will heal, but I have grave news,
“What is it” Kra-Kal rasped.
‘We found out how the Orks got here. They were given the bypass codes by someone, but we do not yet know.
“The Warboss is over here, lets see what he has” Said Yarken, coming up beside them.
Between the apocrathary and Yarken, Kra-Kal half stumbled, half walked to where the Warboss laid.
“You did a number on him Kal.” said Yarken
They searched its body and found disturbing news. They found Their Captains Data Pad in its bag.
“This isn’t possible, how did Akash get his data Pad taken from him.” Yarken said.
Kra-Kal, remembering what he saw during the battle said “I saw a figure talking to the Warboss, he was cut down though. It was over here.”
They went over to where Kra-Kal had indicated and they found their captains body. They reported that their captain was a traitor and that was why the defenses were down. Akash was removed from the Latency of Honour and an Inquisitorial investigation took place to uncover hidden secrets.
When he had time Kra-Kal went back to the bunker to sit and think about the battle and other things troubling his mind.
“I thought id find you here.” said a voice. Kra-Kal turned around to see the chapter master standing at the doorway.
“Sir!” he said and saluted him.
“At ease, at ease. I know why you are here. You are wondering about what was so important about this position.
“Yes sir, I was”
“Let me show you something.” He got up and Kra-Kal followed him. The chapter master went to a wall and slipped a card into a slit. A panel came up and he punched in a long password. A screen came up and a laser scanned his retina. He also had to give a genetic sample. Finally, he was done and the ground began to open and stairs appeared. They walked down and Kra-Kal was met by the most beautiful thing he ever saw. Their was a shrine in the middle of the room with eight burning candles. Their were many symbols and plants. But in the in front of it all was a coffin, and on that coffin six words were written.
Servant of the Emperor
“His resting place, that’s what was so important.” Breathed Kra-Kal.
“Yes Captain it is, that’s what was so important.” Said the Chapter Master
That day and that time, veteran sergeant Kra-Kal Vanig became Captain of 5th company, Salamander Chapter, of the Emperor’s Army.