Author Topic: Fallen Paladin, Traitor Champion  (Read 24287 times)

Offline Kallidor

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Re: Fallen Paladin, Traitor Champion
« Reply #30 on: June 06, 2010, 11:21:40 PM »
   "Inquisitor, they have teleported an assault unit onto the Sentinel's hull." Farran looked over to him, her features blank.

   "I know; the Sentinel chafes at their presence. Charge the Warp Engines."

   "Inquisitor, that would-" Lomak cut the Priestess off, his expression grim. "Just do it, we cannot afford to let the Sentinel fall into their hands." Farran didn't say anything but complied with his order. Translating to warp this far in system and this close to another vessel would destroy them all, and likely damn their souls to eternal torment but the nullship was too precious to allow anyone, even other Imperial agents, to take it as a prize.

   "Open a vox channel." Farran nodded and Lomak heard a pip as the channel opened, he could hear the bridge crew of the Redemption Sought shifting quietly and could see them moving through the massively thick plascrystal windows and it was some small comfort to Lomak that the advaned viewing systems of the Sentinel meant that he was out of sight of Captain Nero and his men.

   ++I am here on Inquisitorial business Captain++ They were hunting the fallen marine, Falzone, the mysterious message was making more sense now. ++It would seem however that our purpose is shared. You seek the renegade, Tigurio Falzone, I once fought by his side during the Silvorian Heresy and now I am here to see that his honourable record of service is not further sullied by his fall from grace++

  "Dieter, If the assault team attempts to gain entry do not wait for my order, translate us to Warp immediately."

  "Aye Inquisitor." The Navigator replied heavily but obeyed, preparing the Sentinel. Their fates were now in Nero's hands.
« Last Edit: June 08, 2010, 04:05:36 AM by Kallidor »
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Offline Necris

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Re: Fallen Paladin, Traitor Champion
« Reply #31 on: June 07, 2010, 12:04:28 AM »
"Disengage your warp drive Inquisitor."

Nero paused as his finger hovered over the red rune it would give Brak the assault order he withdrew his hand from the plinth and sighed.

"Our cause is the same it seems, I will prepare a bay for your ship so we can talk face to face."

He shut the vox link down striding from the plinth, heading for the view port

"Recall Brak and his hounds, open the primary bays for Lomaks ship."

He looked out over the ship as Brak and his marines vanished in a blue haze. He looked to the crystalline view port of the smaller craft the null ship was like a black shell, if it wasn't for the fact that his mind was a honed military weapon he would not have known where to look, he gave the impression of knowing who he was looking at.

"Draconis, have you ships stand down, we will talk."

Draconis nodded curtly moving to vox controls he sent his commands.

"How long until our own warp drives are ready?"

"They are cycled captain, all we await is Silas and his navigation."

He turned from the view and strode across the deck.

"Alert me when all is ready Tass you have the bridge, Draconis if you'd follow me we have an Imperial servant to greet it seems fitting at least one Imperial servant be there to return the gesture."



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Offline Kallidor

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Re: Fallen Paladin, Traitor Champion
« Reply #32 on: June 08, 2010, 04:04:57 AM »
   "Stay with the Sentinel, enter stealth mode as soon as I reach the deck, seal the hatch and engage the active counter-measures. Monitor my vital signs and if they should fluctuate for any reason leave immediately, use any means necessary, translate to warp and head directly to Anoth Toll, inform them before you arrive but consider the resolution of the matter as Inquisitorial business and await your re-assignment."

Lomak turned to face his tiny crew, they were all of them, and he included himself, mere tools of the Inquisition and hence the God-Emperor, their fates were unimportant compared to the great works which they undertook on behalf of the Imperium. Even so he had lived with these three people for many years, he knew them better than he had known anyone in his life and he felt that if something should happen to him aboard the Redemption Sought, he would miss them.

   "Unless I return to the Sentinel uncoerced then consider any attempt to communicate with the Sentinel and certainly any attempt to gain entry as an act of aggression and carry out my previous orders."

Lomak gave a curt nod and the massively thick hatch irised open. A series of shimmering energy fields appeared, a set of translucent steps which crackled gently as Lomak descended. As he reached the deck he could see Captain Nero and his crew approaching, behind him the Sentinel vanished, even the weight of its presence lifted as if it had simply ceased to exist altogether.
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Offline Necris

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Re: Fallen Paladin, Traitor Champion
« Reply #33 on: June 08, 2010, 08:44:27 AM »
"Inquisitor Lomak."

He stopped a few feet short of the Inquisitor allowing the much smaller man to walk towards them.

"This is Sergeant Falzone of the Fists."

He allowed Draconis to make a formal bow before continuing.

"There is no need for your ship to remain cloaked, your small crew are welcome aboard, I do not make it a habit to attack guests."

He gestured for the pair of the Imperials to follow and strode from the bay, he led them to a spartan war room behind the bridge, there were no chairs or elaborate decorations the room was filled with a simply holo-projector and tactical array.

"As I said we seek the Traitor Falzone, Draconis has been dispatched by his Chapter to hunt down the cursed blood of his linage."

"Any yourself."

"I am here because I am here."

"But who commands you? You are a captain not a force commander or master."

Nero smiled at the question.

"The Emperor is my Master, no other."

"That is not helpful, I do not recognise your heraldry what chapter are you from?"

"I am a Luna Wolf, if that shocks you I would not be surprised, your ilk are a bane on the Imperium but a useful tool none the less despite their over zealous nature in expunging men like me."

"Men like you?"

"Loyalists tainted by the actions of their cursed brothers."

He nodded as Sol strode in, he bore a tray of wines and water placing them on the projector he looked Lomak over before moving to lean against one of the walls.

"Refreshment should you wish it, the water has a little metallic after taste it is from our filtration systems."

He poured himself a goblet of the water and sipped from it.

"You do not need fear poisons if I'd wished you dead I'd have cut your head from your body the moment I' lai eyes upon you."

He strode from the table looking through the portcullis.

"Do you have any more questions?"   
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Offline Draco Silverhand

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Re: Fallen Paladin, Traitor Champion
« Reply #34 on: June 08, 2010, 03:20:44 PM »
"One." Draconis interjected. "You served alongside my great uncle before he died." He locked eyes with Lomak. "What happened to Tigurio Falzone?"

"Died?" Nero asked over his shoulder while gazing out a star port.

"A man who turns on the Emperor is already dead." Draconis said, a note of sadness hinted before his voice returned to his usual clipped soldiery. "So, my great uncle is dead, and we are late in providing him a funeral."

Offline Kallidor

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Re: Fallen Paladin, Traitor Champion
« Reply #35 on: June 09, 2010, 12:37:11 AM »
Lomak ignored the water. He found it incredulous that a Luna Wolf could have survived all these millennia. He himself had been born over six thousand years previously but the passage of time had passed in a matter of weeks, a routine warp voyage which had taken less than a month but in the real world had lasted sixty centuries. Unless this Nero was a relatively new addition to the damned lineage of the Arch Traitor? The most simple explanation was that he was lying. The bravado about the ease with which he could have killed Lomak hinted at some inferiority complex for if Lomak was so easily dispatched, if he presented no possible threat why talk of murder so brazenly? If an Astartes felt the need to mention such things who knew what other disorders he might have, lying was the least of them, especially for one who claimed such tainted lineage.

   "The road to hell is paved with good intentions, and trod by prideful fools." Captain Nero looked back over his shoulder at the obvious barb. "Tigurio Falzone was seduced by the promise of Chaos. His fall was regretable."
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Offline Necris

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Re: Fallen Paladin, Traitor Champion
« Reply #36 on: June 09, 2010, 01:16:46 AM »
"Regrettable, that is an interesting term, one could say as much for the Warmaster, his fall was regrettable, his betrayal of his sons was regrettable, his wounding of the Emperor on board the Vengeful Spirit was regrettable. It still does not change what he did does it."

He sipped the water as he turned to look upon Lomak

"There is age in your eyes Inquisitor, yet there is also a lack of something."

He seemed to think for a long while before continuing, placing the goblet down he strode across the room.

"You think of me a prideful fool, following the path to hell and damnation with a righteousness but you also think me tainted, no Inquisitor I am free of  the taint of Chaos the Warmaster saw that at Istvaan."

He strode across the room to Sol

"The Phoenician saw as much in Sol here, sent him to Die under the command of Solomon Demeter, he fought in Precentor's Palace in those last days of the Warmasters first betrayal ."

He turned back to Lomak

"So if you wish to hurl insults at us Inquisitor remember that we unlike Draconis are from a much cruder time when all we knew was war and death, and all we have known since is death and revenge."
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Offline Kallidor

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Re: Fallen Paladin, Traitor Champion
« Reply #37 on: June 09, 2010, 01:53:56 AM »
   "There are none so blind as those who will not see and that is the true strength of Chaos; those who tred its path are seldom aware of it, fewer still are those who are aware and can admit it. Even so you are in no position to judge your own purity and citing the Arch Betrayer as a reference can only be detrimental to that end.

"Your threats are ill considered also; my life is the Emperor's and only He may end it, not you nor anyone or anything else."

Lomak looked away from the supposed Luna Wolf Captain. He was not impressed with his knowledge of names and events from the time of the Great Heresy; such information was available to those who knew where to look and it seemed only to confirm the Captain's perfidious nature rather than dispel it and he implicated his cohort, Sol, in the deception.

   "Brother Falzone, tell me, what did you discover on the planet's surface? Tigurio was not a weak man that stumbled into the embrace of Chaos, like many during the dark says when he and I fought together, he was pushed, even if at the end he went willingly. What do you interpret from his actions on Akthalos?"
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Offline Draco Silverhand

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Re: Fallen Paladin, Traitor Champion
« Reply #38 on: June 09, 2010, 03:04:01 PM »
"Insanity." Draconis had sat down at the meeting table, his hands folded before his face in a contemplative pose. "Insanity or an intense hatred for man." He locked eyes with Lomak. "I met my uncle when I was a neophyte... He was a great and fierce warrior who shared the passion of his battle brothers, but one thing stood him apart." He paused to let Nero and Orin tune in. "Calm."

"Calm?" Nero interjected. "I thought Black Templars were supposed to be psychotic. Near to the hatred Khorne Berserkers exhibit."

"Would you say your World Eaters devote their bloodshed to Khorne?" Draconis now locked eyes with Nero, who remained silent for a moment. "I would not assume their purity or impurity, but to suggest that the Black Templar way of mastering close combat, bringing it to the enemy, and accepting any challenge, no matter the odds..." He shook his head. "To suggest that way of warfare is Khornate by nature is an insult to those who remain loyal."

"No." Draconis continued, turning his gaze back to the Inquisitor. "My late uncle seems gripped by a madness beyond the hatred of Khorne. As I said before, when his soul was pure, Tigurio Falzone was a calm Black Templar. Reserved in action and opinion until right action was required. He was quick to act against rebellion and invasion, but by contrast to the knights under his command, my great uncle would investigate, even consult with the ship's navigator for guidance, as much as with the chapter chaplains. In the Imperial Fists, this would be seen for the wisdom it was, but to the Black Templars, such a thing... consorting with a psyker... is seen as damnable. That is why he was sent alone to investigate Zoran Silver. Yes, he was given command of his company, but he was sent without support from the chapter, and commanded to operate alone until there was cause... The chaplain who was sent with him... I do not know his name, but that man was responsible for determining when the time was right for Tigurio to have battle support."

"Tigurio had accquired a sword some time before his banishment, however. A sword of renown, whose name I cannot recall, but whose properties I can only assume are Daemonic. This sword was not known to be posessed by the Black Templars, as I am only aware of the sword because the Inquisition briefed me prior to my assignment to this quest." He let this knowledge sink in. "I was given this." Draconis held up an Inquisitorial seal "To aid in recruiting an Imperial Guard detatchment and an Imperial Navy ship. If need be, I have authority to requisition a fleet, but I am reticent to do so until I know the need is absolute. Hence why I only have a sword class frigate at my disposal."

"However, the point here is that Tigurio once was highly reserved, he only struck where violence was needed to end a conflict. His destruction of the entire area surrounding the mines on the surface, using magma bombs, as far as I could deduce from the ruins, suggests a newfound hatred or a festering insanity in his mind. Perhaps he meant to cover his tracks and obliterate the mine, but he could have done better with melta bombs and a single lance strike at the mine's entrance." Draconis got up.

"I also suspect he accquired some form of daemonic artefact from the mine." Draconis looked to Nero, who nodded.

"Orin, my psyker and adviser has informed me as much." Nero confirmed, nodding.

"Does he not already have a posessed sword?" Lomak asked.

"He does. I would expect. But whether he still carries it, or if that daemon now plays a role in this new scheme I cannot say." Draconis looked out the viewing glass in the room, contemplative of the stars. "Perhaps he is collecting."

"To what end?" Lomak asked.

"Perhaps we will have a better idea at the coordinates of the next world." Nero said. "We cannot tarry long here, so perhaps it would be better to discuss this matter more fully after we have investigated the next world. Orin and Silas have given us coordinates, so Lomak, you're welcome to come along for the ride. Perhaps then, you will be able to assess the sanity of our crew. Perhaps you will find we are not as pathological as you suspect."

Offline Kallidor

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Re: Fallen Paladin, Traitor Champion
« Reply #39 on: June 09, 2010, 05:56:54 PM »
   "It is my holy duty to suspect everyone I meet Captain, complacency in that regard is the first sin and invites disaster. In any case it would be a waste of time and resources to tackle this, problem, individually so I will remain aboard."

   "Perhaps your crew would like to join you then Inquisitor, I'm sure they'd like to get out of that tiny ship of yours."

Lomak's expression was the same as it ever was, a frozen mask that betrayed no hint of his thoughts or mood. For an Inquisitor it was a blessing, never had Lomak needed to control himself, it was something that came naturally with no effort at all. Perhaps in another life it would have been an anti-social trait that would have been ultiamtely self-destructive but in Inquisitor, it was a true boon.

   "My crew's requirements are not your concern Captain nor are they relevant. I was not there when Tigurio's treachery was revealed, Inquisitor Atavus had that dubious honour. The Black Templars who remained loyal to him were allowed to continue in the fight against Lostenburgh, there was certainly some other agenda that Tigurio was pursuing." Draconis considered Lomak's words, even for an Astartes it was hard to listen to when it concerned a fellow Brother and a relative. "As you say Captain Nero, perhaps we will learn more at the next planet."
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Offline Necris

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Re: Fallen Paladin, Traitor Champion
« Reply #40 on: June 09, 2010, 09:19:04 PM »
"Atavus, that is a name long familiar with me."

He looked out over his ship.

"Though the Atavus I knew was captain of the Eternity Gate of the Imperial Palace."

He turned from the view as an alert fleshing in the collar of his armour.

"We are ready for warp translation, Draconis do you wish to return to your ship or would you prefer to remain here?"

He turned his attention to Sol.

"Prepare a compartment for the Inquisitor and his people should he require it, more some of the Legio into one of the mess halls."

Sol nodded curtly before pushing from the wall he strode across to the Inquisitor.

"I'll have somewhere set aside for you within the hour."

« Last Edit: June 09, 2010, 09:21:46 PM by Necris »
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Offline Kallidor

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Re: Fallen Paladin, Traitor Champion
« Reply #41 on: June 09, 2010, 11:23:56 PM »
   "I thank you for your hospitality but there is really no need to go to any trouble on my account. Unless there is anything further to discuss I will return to my vessel?"
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Offline Draco Silverhand

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Re: Fallen Paladin, Traitor Champion
« Reply #42 on: June 10, 2010, 06:37:51 AM »
"If I may, the remainder of my squad shall monitor operations aboard the... forgive me if I mispronounce her name... the Eichnoduur. The sword class ship." Draconis paused. "I will remain aboard this ship. If it truly is a pre-Heresy relic, then I should like to study the architecture. If I am permitted to do so." He turned a wary eye to Nero.

"Perhaps." Was all Nero said at first, and Draconis suspected that Nero, either out of pathos or ten thousand years of experience, was reticent to trust any who had not faught alongside him on Istvaan V...

"And perhaps, although I know it is not my place to bandy words with an Inquisitor, I might offer some insight." Draconis posed the thought and waited for a reply, when he found Orin Lomak's unwavering gaze locked with his own, he decided to continue. "Space Marines barely, if at all age. Of the primarchs, none survive due to heroic death, or they survive on as vile daemons in service to Chaos. However, there have been reports throughout the last millenia of loyalist marines thought lost to the warp who for some reason or another whethered thousands of years in the blink of an eye..."

"So perhaps before you assume that these men are impostors or ignorant heretics, you might keep in mind that Nero has a recorded history of conflict within the Imperium, but I cannot say for sure it is with the Imperium. I have very little knowledge of the records at this moment, but I encountered the name of one Nero - a Captain branded Excommunicate Traitorus by the Inquisition - in my tactica lessons when I was inducted into the Imperial Fists as a Devastator marine, again in my lessons in Assault tactics and even when I was a brother marine under another sergeant, I was taught tacticum pertaining to a renegade known only as Nero." Draconis paused.

"This Nero was not a renegade or Excommunicate Traitorus Marine for assailing the Imperium, nor for joining the Despoiler's forces, though at least one legend speaks of such a thing. He was branded traitor and renegade because he operates autonomosly from the Imperium..." Draconis looked sidelong at Nero whose eyebrows raised for a second, surprised such a young pup could have heard such of him. "He pays no tithe, nor does he answer to the Ministorum's demands for gene seed, nor does he answer pettitions from other marine chapters." Draconis realized he was prattling and stopped. After a moment of awkward silence he spoke again. "I suppose my point is, from his record alone, if this Marine Captain is indeed the Nero I have heard of, he very well may have served alongside the Emperor, and as far as I'm concerned, if he has made it this long without promising his soul to foul sorcery and Chaos, then, perhaps we can give him the benefit of the doubt that he is still pure in the eyes of the Emperor."

Offline Kallidor

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Re: Fallen Paladin, Traitor Champion
« Reply #43 on: June 10, 2010, 06:11:56 PM »
   "I assume nothing Brother Falzone, a merely execute my duty based on the facts. Let us examine your story. You have, as you yourself put it, little knowledge of the records relying instead on hearsay about a supposed renegade Astartes named Nero." Lomak felt Captain Nero bristle as he was so easily called renegade but, keeping his gaze upon Draconis he continued. "To be diplomatic and sensitive to your story Brother Falzone, let us call this Nero an errant Astartes.

"He is, to the extent of your knowledge, working outside the Imperium. All Astartes, as you know, swear severe and binding oaths of loyalty to the Imperium so this Nero by simply, and truly 'simply' is not a word that explains the full ramifications of the action, of choosing to operate independantly of the Imperium. Such an Astartes is, be very definition an oathbreaker.

"An Astartes can no more choose to work outside the bounds of the Imperium, can no more dispence with his oaths to the Imperium, than can an Imperial Commander or any of the Imperium's citizens. Such an individual would be by definition, a traitor and by betraying the Imperium such an individual would have abandoned the God-Emperor and as such would be an apostate. Such an individual would be rightly declared Excommunicate Traitorus.

"You brush over it quite quickly but even you, rushing to the defence of this man, cannot ignore the legend, as all of your evidence is, legend, myth, story, that this character who is called Nero is also said to have joined the forces of the Despoiler. In giving credence to these other legends of Nero are we, am I, seriously supposed to ignore this truly damning legend? On what basis do we ignore this legend but believe the others?

"And there in, Brother Falzone, lies the truth of this matter; that the legendary Nero, survivor of Istvaan, progeny of the Arch Betrayer has forsaken the Imperium, forsaken the God-Emperor, forsworn his oaths of allegiance, loyalty and obedience and pursues some agenda all of his own.

"By your testimony Brother Falzone, this man," Lomak indicated Captain Nero, "Is condemned." Lomak let this sink in and clasped his hands behind his back, pacing a few steps, examining the ancient deck plates and considering the conclusion of his argument. With a deep breath Lomak fixed his gaze upon Draconis once more. "I do not judge men Brother Falzone, only the Emperor may do that. My purpose is to collect evidence and to act upon that evidence according to the dictates laid down by the Emperor Himself. It is not my place to put weight upon legends or stories or myths, to choose to believe one thing but not another, to base my actions upon my personal opinions or preferences. My duty is to assess the man, and by his words and deeds I will know the truth of his soul and via that truth I know what sentence to pass, innocent, or guilty.

"I thank you for your input Brother Draconis, but in future you should leave the work of the Inquisition to the Inquisition. The consequencs of my actions are mine to bear, and I will answer for them when I finally stand before the Emperor, it is not for any of us to act according to our whims but to seek the truth whatever it might be."
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Offline Necris

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Re: Fallen Paladin, Traitor Champion
« Reply #44 on: June 11, 2010, 12:16:09 AM »
Nero rested his hands on the central terminal his voice oozed venom.

"I have broken no oaths Lomak."

He leaned on the terminal the unit creaking with his weight.

"I made my Oaths during the great crusade to my Father the Emperor and my Lord Horus, in a time when the foolish secular belief of your Imperium were against our cause to bring the light of illumination and the truth of science to the universe. The Imperium in it's state now is not the Imperium I serve, I still serve the Imperium of old when the Emperor walked with us."

He pushed from the terminal

"Ah but you can never understand, what standing in his presence truly meant, you couldn't help but obey him, to love him, his very face while unremarkable was at the same time brilliant and majestic. I watched him fight the ork that nearly claimed his life, watched him bring worlds to compliance with but his very presence. I wish I could have stood beside him at the palace when Horus brought his fury to Terra."

He locked eyes with Lomak.

"You have the nerve to call me traitor Lomak, it is you who have betrayed the Emperor, you and the High Lords, you have perverted the Emperor's dream for the future and his Imperium you have twisted his designs for the universe to your own mortal perceptions for how could you not with your flawed mortal minds how could anyone hope to understand his designs he was so far removed from his primaches as we were from them."

He paced round the terminal coming up to Lomak

"God-Emperor, if he could hear your speak those words, oh what fury you would see a fury that could boil seas in moments, one could almost say it would have been divine fury but he was the first to quash such nonsense of him being a God."

Nero almost laughed.

"The God-Emperor is one of your creations the first of your numbers made the man into a God."

He turned

"If you would excuse me I have preperations to make, you have the freedom of the ship save for the engineering decks and the weapons batteries, walk my corridors and companionways see what the Imperium looked like ten thousand years ago
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