The Angel’s Daemons
Honour. Glory. Remembrance. The three very things he craved all waiting for him within the cities’ gates. Only its defenders stood in his way. This was the last stronghold of the Emperor’s enemies; the only thing standing in the way of His conquest of Earth. They, the Immortals – His IX Regiment, had been task to destroy it. The Warlord Draghsei had withdrawn once the Ursh Empire had been annihilated, only months before. The battle lines had been drawn and now, by the end of the day, the Emperor would truly be master of Earth, and the last of His enemies’ blood would colour the sand.
To show His warriors that he was watching them, the Emperor has sent along a contingent of his own custodians to fight beside them; a symbol of the importance of their mission. Bombardment cannons from the rear of their force signalled the start of the battle, their deafening boom like thunder across the valley. The fortresses’ shields absorbed the impact of the first few thousand shells, energy shockwaves disintegrating them as they hit the shield. It didn’t take long before the old technology failed. The shield collapsed with a deafening roar, the shells began to fall on brick, mortar and flesh. The first drops of blood fell. The streets were painted with red. It was as the screams of the dying began to ring out across the valley that they, the Emperor’s Angels, charged.
He reached the city walls inside thirty seconds, his warriors behind him, glory ahead of him. He fired his pistol; men fell to the floor dead, blow to pieces by the mass-reactive shells. Some of the more unlucky ones received darker fates; falling injured and then being gutted with blades as soon as the Emperor’s forces overtook them. The defenders had massed at the gate, defending it with their lives. However, it didn’t take long for the superior Proto-Astartes to cut their way through. Once they entered the fortress the real bloodletting began. The Proto-Astartes spared no one, the rage and anger of the past months was being vented onto the populace of this one final stronghold. The astartes killed and killed and killed. There was no honour to be found on the streets of the fort, just death and the murder of innocents.
The Custodians watched in shock horror. It was said that the Angels were fearless, and it was true. This was no fear, it was utter abhorrence at the actions of the Emperor’s so called angels; his most pure warriors. But here, they betrayed their purity for the sake of their hate. As the Proto-Astartes slaughtered their way through the streets of the fortress, the blood began to flow as streams down the streets. With every shot and every swing of their Chainsword the Astartes worked their way up to the fortresses’ central temple, a place of worship. It was ironic; here and now, amidst all this horrific bloodletting, the Emperor’s words would become true. Humanity would be free once the last altar fell upon the last priest. Humanity would become truly secular. But was the blood of the innocent worth paying?
A unit of ten Astartes hammered down the doors of the church. Their guns spraying fire into the holy place. The floor became corrupted by the blood of innocent bystanders, people whose principals were greater than the Emperor’s ambition. More and more men of faith died until only one remained; the one sat atop the throne at the back of the temple – Warlord Draghsei. He had sat there, his face impassive as his people were slaughtered. His eyes shut, and his moved in constant prayer. He paid no attention to the intruders. Amongst his people he was the Anointed, the mouthpiece of the true deity. He said as much, screaming curse after curse at the astartes. Not that they cared; the Emperor, the pure and true Master of Mankind had taught them how the galaxy was a place of reason and science, not one filled with miracles and misplaced faith. He was the only thing between them and the completion of their Emperor’s vision. To them, that was all that mattered.
The lead astartes moved toward him, his armour painted red with blood. Such was the Warlord’s faith; he accepted his death with open arms. As the Immortal drew his blade and plunged it through his chest. He did not move, he did not scream; he replied: “You have sullied yourselves with the blood of innocents. You have revealed, to all, His Angel’s daemons; may they never see the light of day again.” The Astartes stood there silent, watching the dying Warlord; watching as his lifeblood drained out across the floor. With one final breath, Draghsei died. “Earth belongs to the Emperor,” stated the astartes. His fellow Astartes hammered their fists against their chests. The comm link crackled. “The Emperor is recalling all of the regiments to his palace. He has a new mission for us. Your orders, Master Raldoron?”
“Well, my brother, we have conquered Earth. What else can our Master have us do?” There was only silence as Raldoron walked out of the