Know Thy Enemy, Destroy Thy Enemy

Mission 2 Part 2 - The Secrets of Aurum
Thought for the Day: Those with nothing to hide have nothing to fear.

+ Excerpted from the journals of Deathwatch Apothecary Sallust Azaleh of the Crimson Suns Chapter +

We set down on Aurum and it is every bit as bad as I had feared. Backwards, barbaric, uncivilized, and decidedly not as cleanly as the ship we arrived in. I hesitate to say it, but this beastly little world is a perfect fit for the likes of Brothers Angus and Vilhjamhr, and I find myself in the unenviable position of being in total agreement with Brother Heinrick. Brother Valentinus seems unfazed, though one would expect this of a Cursor, and Brother Teporus is as unreadable as ever beneath his mask of scars, but I rather suspect that the grim visaged Devastator approves of this world unreservedly. For myself I will not be taking my helmet off unless it is absolutely necessary.

Upon our arrival at the Imperial Guard Barracks, a term I use with great reservation and more than a bit of shame given its pathetic size and composition of twelve bedraggled infantrymen, the Brigadier took over command and we interviewed his ‘regiment’. Though we found out very little from the Guardsmen, Sergeant Jenkins advised us that the locals feared a beast called a ‘malesector’. Cursor Valentinus and I agree that this ‘malesector’ is likely the local name for the Tyranid Hive Beast that we believe to be infiltrating this world to prepared it for the depredations of Hive Fleet Dagon.

Upon leaving the Guardsmen’s humble ‘barracks’, we encountered a group of locals engaged in sparring and mock combat trials. The locals look almost as though they could be the long lost kin of of our Tactical Marine and our Assault Marine, being large, burly, barbarously barbed, and mainly unkempt. After watching for a few moments, I approached the instructor of the group, a Shield-Bearer Zayr, and advised him that we would be honored to provide an example of our martial skill using their practice weapons. Angus and Vihjamhr took up the native arms and proceeded to duel, the the Storm Warden winning fairly handily in despite of the Space Wolf’s rather brilliant parrying. The Aurumites were satisfied and I believe that we have earned a small measure of good will from these doughty warriors.

Henrick was most insistent that we advance our cause and go to examine the corpse of Sister Hospitalier Racquiel. Though I failed to see the rush, the body had been on the slab for weeks at the minimum, Cursor Valentinus agreed and we made our way to Ecclesiarchy’s bastion on Aurum: The Word of Faith. In the Commercial area leading to the Word of Faith we encountered a merchant selling a weapon most unusual: A Genestealer Claw Knife! The hapless merchant, confronted with an irate Brother Teporus and an even angrier Brother Heinrick, quickly volunteered the source of the item as a man named Heydal, who comes from outside of Haistand. This mendicant has not been seen in some months, though. Brother Vilhjamhr in an act of charity, bartered one of his many necklaces of fangs for the talons. Apparently the merchant adjudged this to be a more than fair trade.

Near the Word of Faith, we encountered the missionary, Brother Marius, who was being beset by local thugs. Our arrival forestalled further incident, and Brother Marius brought us to the body of Sister Racquiel. A thorough examination and recording determined that the Sister Hospitalier had received a Genestealer’s kiss. Heuristic parse dictates that she took her own life in order to prevent her now defiled and corrupted body from serving the nefarious Hive creatures that infected her. Likely this was her only way to get the message that there were terrible things afoot here out to the Deathwatch. Her sacrifice and martyrdom will be remembered.

After ensuring that the Guard had not been similarly corrupted, we took them on an excursion to a ruined Temple, that we discovered was a shrine to the Old Gods of the Aurum. These Old Gods were none-other than the Primarchs of our various Astartes chapters! This revelation would definitely help bridge the gap and bring the Aurum closer to proper obeisance to the Administratum and the Ecclesiarchy, as is only right and proper.

Fearing that the CUlt may have penetrated the highest ranks of this society, Brother Librarian Valentinus decided on a course that would test the highest echelons of their society. We went forth to present a gift to the Caele of the Aurum, a set of Genestealer Talon Knives. The reactions of the Caele and his court would tell us all that we needed to know. Brother Valentinus was right.

We were met in the antechamber by none-other than Shield-Bearer Zayr. Though I had thought the title a low one, perhaps belonging to a sergeant or small warband leader, Brother Vilhjamhr explained that the title is basically one belonging to a warlord or general. His reaction to the talons was quite illuminating. Shame! My initial diagnosis has proven accurate: The Aurum will not allow outsiders past Haistand due to their shame at their inability to deal with the threat. Seeing an opportunity to continue to advance our secondary objective of securing better relations with the Aurumites, I immediately jumped upon this revelation and shifted the honour-debt from the savage warlord to use, as representatives of the Old Gods and of the Emperor. It was our duty to extend the Emperor’s Protection to all Mankind, and we must now go forth and destroy the abominations that corrupt the Emperor’s faithful and restore our honour. The Shield-Bearer took this with a great degree of gratitude, and so too did the Caele when we were admitted to see him. Journeying to the infestation in the North required us to undergo a ritual initiation, though, and this would prove problematic for several of us.

I have had to swallow my distaste and discomfort and strip my armour off and abandon the weapons of civilization for, of all things, a spear. We all similarly removed our armour and accoutrements and donned local garb and weapons to travel into the blasted environs of the local Reaving Canyon to hunt something called a Diablodon. I am hoping to be able to retrieve the carcass for study, along with the bodies of any of the other wildlife foolish enough to annoy a squad of Marines in a hurry.

We managed to destroy a nest of Theratryx, and I intend to harvest at least a few samples of the creatures before we leave this benighted Canyon. We made our way to the Diablodon’s lair, and made a plan certain to maximize our effectiveness, even with these primitive weapons. I would, as the stealthiest, penetrate the beast’s lair and get its attention via surprise attack. Once the creature was engaged and enraged, I would goad it out into the open, where my Brotehrs would fall upon the hapless beast. Our next step would be to put this plan into action…

Mission 2 Part 1 - En Route to Aurum
Thought for the Day: The Emperor sees all and forgives naught

+++From the Journals of Brother Apothecary Sallust Azaleh, Crimson Suns Chapter on detached duty with Deathwatch Kill Team Pallas+++

We boarded the Horizon’s Pride today, taking passage to the recently re-integrated system of Orum, deep in the Jericho Reach. Our mission is to determine the nature of threat on the surface and deal with it in such a way as to ensure the smooth and proper realignment of Aurum from independence to Imperial rule.

Rogue Trader Diaz Lan, a merchant and scoundrel deep in the service of the Inquisition when not finding his way to profit from the Crusade, informed us that there were a number of peculiarities with the world and people of Aurum. I shall enumerate those issues that struck me statistically significant.

Issue 1 – The Aurum survived the long interregnum between the lapse of contact with the Empire and the Jericho Crusade mostly intact and not beset by Xenos or Daemons. This, while hardly unique, is quite unusual and cause for further investigation given the advance states of corruption and Xenos influence in the Reach.

Issue 2 – There have been a number of disappearances, both locals and Imperial Citizens, and ‘animal attacks’ or ‘random acts of violence’. As this is a warrior culture, this is hardly unexpected, however the quantity and nature of the attacks appears somewhat suspect. In addition these bodies are quickly disposed of through cremation with no reason or discussion from the Aurum.

Issue 3 – The Aurum will not allow off-worlders outside of their capital city. This is decidedly suspicious, even for a Void-born Marine like myself. Granted the entire idea of living in a vast area with uncontrollable atmospherics and a life-sustainer based on flora and ‘natural phenomena’ seems foolish to me, but the fact remains that on most planets one can move across the surface without undue issue. The fact that this is a concern of the Aurum indicates that either they are hiding something outside the cities or they are desperately afraid of something outside the cities. Given their martial culture, the latter is quite likely given the shame that would attach to their inability to deal with the issue on their own, however one cannot discount the former.

Issue 4 – A Sister Hospitalier was found dead in her chapel. Ostensibly, this is the primary reason that we have been dispatched, however it seems to me to be more a symptom of the overall problems present on Aurum that have been glossed over by over-ambitious officials of the Administratum. By any course, the fact remains that the Sister Hospitalier’s apparent suicide is certainly not characteristic of their order, and merits more directed scrutiny.

A diagnosis using the standard process of heuristic parse has dictated the logical extrapolation of the data, to whit: the planet may be under threat from a Gene Stealer Cult. Cursor Valentinus… pardon, Brother Librarian Valentinus, has been placed in command of our Kill Team due to his experience with these particular vile Xenos, and we are proceeding based singularly on his recommendation. Apparently during a boarding action on a space hulk, Cursor Valentinus distinguished himself against these creatures, I only hope that his experiences were not the mirror of my own, as those have rendered me unfit for command.

We departed on the Horizon’s Pride, and almost immediately upon the commencement of our voyage we began to note several oddities about the vessel. Though well maintained for a ship not serving my Chapter, the Horizon’s Pride has an excessive number of Servitors manning posts throughout the ship. These Servitors, it turned out, would be problematic. I am getting ahead of myself, though.

During our tour of the vessel, I made note of a crewman in the brig, a worthy by the name of Kohl Bennex. The lad had been imprisoned on charge of murder and was to be brought before Captain’s Mast before execution. He plead to me that the death of the Chief Enginseer was an accident caused when said Mechanicus Acolyte rushed him on a catwalk after Bennex inquired about a malfunctioning Servitor.

I brought this information to our Cursor, and he read the Emperor’s Tarot to determine a course of action while I contacted Techmarine Heinrick. Surprisingly, while I had expected a rebuff and little traction or assistance from the Black Templar I was rewarded with full cooperation. Perhaps there is room for rapprochement with the members of the Cult Mechanicus, but I will not put too much stock in members of that cult until it has been proved that they hold not my entire Chapter in abeyance. Together we charted a course to uncover the truth behind the strange actions and gibberings of the Servitors.

Brother Librarian Valentinus, I must get used to using that title as he does not seem to recognize the title of Cursor, had completed his divinations when Trader Diaz Lan and his Seneschal, Veyoris Akioh, came down the very hallway that the Cursor had seen danger emerge from. At this point we were joined by Brother Vilhjamhr and Brother Teporus. It took but a moment for our leader to ascertain that the Seneschal was a rogue Psyker, and we bent our not inconsiderable will to ensuring that the psyker not be allowed to the bridge, where he could cause untold havoc among the Navigators and Astropaths with his wild talents. In order to find the cause of the unlucky creature’s sudden transformation from cargomaster to budding sorcerer we examined the relics of Diaz Lan’s sanctioned collection, and though the Helix Gauntlet and several Tomes seemed interesting, we were unable to draw a direct correlation between access to the items and the sudden manifestation of psychic phenomena in the Seneschal. This is a pity as a proper diagnosis and course of application may have provided invaluable benefit to the Red Star Fleet and the Red Star herself.

With this issue resolved for the moment, pending more thorough dissection of the facts, we turned our attention to the Enginseers and the Engineering Deck’s Servitors. An examination by Brother Heinrick and Brother Librarian Valentinus determined that the mechanical wretches were, in fact, succumbing to the malign influences of the Warp, a dark discovery which led to a fracas in the Engine Room between our number and the mutinous mechanisms. My new Brothers fought well and bravely, using their strengths to turn the tide against the rebellious robot-men, and soon the peril was abated.

Eventually we made our way to Aurum where we hope to begin our investigations. Brother-Captain Hamilcar has brought us a new addition to Kill Team Pallas, a Storm Warden Assault Marine by the name of Angus Morgan. This new fellow has quickly integrated himself and made a friend in Vilhjamhr over their shared fondness for drink. I am unsure if I should tell them that their physiology prevents such comestibles from having any effect other than the purely psychological, though I am sure that in their deep subconscious they already know this and simply wish to play at the charade of mortality… unless they are drinking pure battery acid and strychnine, in which case all bets are off.

I look forward to our Cursor’s leadership on Aurum, even though I surely do not look forward to descending to the planet…

Mission 1-Recon of Sedu

Begin Mission Report
Team Leader: Watch Captain Hamilcar Shafat
Position: Commanding Officer of Kill-Team Pallas
To: Watch Commander Mordigael

Primary Objective: Investigate Ork Presence on Sedu and investigate sudden increase in Ork organization and weaponry effectiveness.
Secondary Objective: Destroy local Ork leadership.
Tertiary Objective: Obtain a sample of X-1749.

Erioch Standard Time: 0723

Planetfall on Sedu was made via Drop Pod from Deathwatch Cruiser Vigilant. Brother-Apothecary Sallust Azaleh is found to have a dislike for Drop Pods, a quirk of his Chapter. Refereed to it as being ‘shot at the planet’, and had asked where Teleportarium was. Curious contrast with Brother Vilhajnir and the Space Wolves’ known dislike for Teleportariums. Will need to investigate farther. Landed at Drop Point Theta with no incident.

Led squad, through rocky field. Squad came across two mobs of Orks (Shoota and Choppa) arguing. With cover, both groups were quickly destroyed. Brother Vicero skillfully wielded Heavy Bolter in controlling and destroying the Ork mobs, including 2 Nobs. Orks had come to investigate drop pod insertion looking for salvage. Ork presence confirmed to be inside canyons as suspected.

Erioch Standard Time: 0733

I gave decision on how to proceed to team to test consensus. Differences in personality and Chapter demeanor showed up but were resolved amicably. Decision made to proceed through canyon rather than risk falling from height.

Erioch Standard Time: 0830

Brother Techmarine Heinrich came under heavy fire from Ork ‘Lootas’ on top of cliff. Brother Vilhajnir, in an unorthodox but well-executed move, threw a Krak Grenade onto a small cliff face beneath the Orks’ position. Cliff was brought down, most Orks killed by impact, including one of the Big Meks sent to be assassinated. Big Mek kill claimed by Brother Vicero. Large dust cloud formed and the sound of an Ork voice heard nearby. Kill team encounters an Ork Squig-Herder with a large herd of Squigs. Rather than waste ammunition, Brother Heinrich launches rock (Mechanicus quirk?) at Squig Herder, picking him out. Squig Herder is dispatched, but Squigs begin to go mad. Brother Valentinus, had the brilliant idea to psychically compel the Squigs to return to their pens, leading team to Ork hideout.

Erioch Standard Time: 0925

Squigs are surprisingly fast. Central camp found and met with heavy resistance, including another Big Mek, 1 mob of Choppa Orks, 1 mob of Shoota Orks, and 1 mob of Lootas. Squigs cause great disruption and even kill some Orks. A long gun battle emerges. Fortunately, these Orks are particularly bad marksmen (for Orks). Brother Sallust destroys Big Mek with well placed Bolter Burst. Brother Vicero and myself engaged Lootas and Shootas while the rest of the squad targeted the Choppas. Brother Heinrich takes wound to head while Brother Vilhajnir takes a wound to his left leg, though neither are critical. I charge into fray to extricate squad as Vicero methodically destroys the other Hordes. Though battle is long, victory is assured. This long battle does remind me that our team still needs a melee specialist. It is unfortunate Brother Samm’uel was called away in perpetuity to the Good Samaritan incident.

Erioch Standard Time: 1113

Ork cave complex is searched. Brothers Heinrich and Sallust take possession of large sample of X-1749 found by Orks. Brothers Vicero, Vilhajnir, and Valentinus discover weapon caches and an extremely crude Ork starmap. Weapon caches are found to be mostly Tau and surprisingly new. Possibility of more direct Tau involvement a possibility. Must investigate farther.

Erioch Standard Time: 1330

Sample brought to Thunderhawk. Extraction complete with all objectives fulfilled and no loss of material. Mission Complete.

Thought for the Day: He who has nothing can still have faith.

Welcome to your Adventure Log!
A blog for your campaign

Every campaign gets an Adventure Log, a blog for your adventures!

While the wiki is great for organizing your campaign world, it’s not the best way to chronicle your adventures. For that purpose, you need a blog!

The Adventure Log will allow you to chronologically order the happenings of your campaign. It serves as the record of what has passed. After each gaming session, come to the Adventure Log and write up what happened. In time, it will grow into a great story!

Best of all, each Adventure Log post is also a wiki page! You can link back and forth with your wiki, characters, and so forth as you wish.

One final tip: Before you jump in and try to write up the entire history for your campaign, take a deep breath. Rather than spending days writing and getting exhausted, I would suggest writing a quick “Story So Far” with only a summary. Then, get back to gaming! Grow your Adventure Log over time, rather than all at once.


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