Lemartes and his scout headed toward what appeared, on their auspex, to be the remains of a land convoy. Once closer, they could see the burnt out remains of transport crawlers and couple of surplus Chimeras, heavily modified to handle civilian duties. Strangely, there was no sign of bodies...
After checking in and around the remaining vehicles, it was confirmed that no humans remained alive…the absence of bodies continued to trouble Lemartes.
Another two days of tracking, and they arrived at an area covered in tall brush and grasses. Visibility was restricted to about 50 meters. Moreover, the trail had given out. Sergeant Lemartes decided to stop for hydration and weapons checks. As his men settled in, he heard the auspex begin to beep. “Something moving, about 150 meters out, Sergeant.” It was Philemon, the marine carrying the plasma gun. “Whatever it is, it’s moving fast…and now there are multiple contacts.” The scouts quickly turned to and began to activate their weapons. “More contacts, Sergeant, coming in from multiple directions. Something big too. Really big.”
The grass began to stir on their right flank…then their left flank..then nothing. It was as though whatever was out there was waiting for them to react, to commit to some action. The minutes passed. Then they heard it. A slow, heavy thud. Another, then another. Something was moving slowly toward them, directly to their front. The grass and brush to their front began to stir, but this time it didn’t stop at distance. It kept coming.
A large brood of Termagaunts erupted on either side of their battle line. They charged toward the marines, firing their bio-weapons and howling in a freakish chorus. Now Lemartes deployed his own surprise…he had brought two flamers. A scout on either flank hosed down the screaming Tyranids with gouts of promethium. So many fell. Few survived. As though the death of the lesser creatures had been a cue, a creature larger than any of the scouts or Sergeant Lemartes had ever seen emerged from the brush in front of them. It was a Carnifex, but gigantic and horribly scarred. What Lemartes noticed immediately, however, was the absence of its right eye. This was Old One Eye!
He had wisely ordered the missile launchers and plasma gun deployed to his front, and each fired as soon as the monstrosity was visible. The first missile hit it’s left shoulder, and tore a huge chunk of carapace away. The second missile glanced off its chest armour, as the creature had turned when its shoulder had been wounded. The plasma gunner hit the creature’s left leg, and a huge hole was opened by the energy weapon. It staggered, but as it recovered, it seemed to start regenerating from both of its injuries almost immediately! The remaining scouts fired dozens of bolter rounds into it; these were simply deflected by Old One Eye’s ancient body. With the creature almost in their midst, the plama gunner got off a final shot. It impacted squarely in the center of the Carnifex’s chest, shattering bone and tearing alien flesh. Old One Eye staggered again, dropping to a knee. Black liquid briefly poured from the wound…but only briefly. Even this wound, which should have been mortal, only slowed the creature! It rose, and continued to advance on the scouts.
Lemartes’ men had eliminated both broods of the smaller Tyranids by now, at the cost of only of their own number. Old One Eye was almost upon them. Sergeant Lemartes unsheathed his power sword and activated his combat shield. This abomination WOULD die…somehow.
It reached the scouts and used both of its oversized (even for a Carnifex) crab-like claws to grab one of the missile scouts and the plasma gunner. Both were lifted off their feet, snapped in half and throw aside in a single, fluid motion. Nothing for it now, thought the sergeant. His six remaining men drew their combat knives, a futile gesture he knew, and charged the beast along with their commander. They sliced, stabbed and gouged, trying to find SOME weak point. Lemartes power sword bit deeply into Old One Eye, causing it to roar in pain. This, of course, was only a temporary reprieve. It crushed the life out of his scout’s one at time. The only real damage the scouts inflicted before they perished was when Antros, holding a krak grenade, grabbed onto one of the enormous crab claws as it swept past his head. He detonated the device, along with himself, and the claw ruptured, leaving only a ragged stump. Lemartes, the last man standing, knew even so grievous a wound would regenerate given enough time. He fought on, as was his duty, until the remaining claw slapped him to the ground as he slashed it with his sword. The impact was bone shattering.
Sergeant Lemartes lay still, his twin hearts beating. He saw the creature standing over him, it’s breathing labored. The last thing he remembered was a slavering maw coming closer. Then…darkness.
Create, grow, feed, adapt