Thank the Emperor, thought Captain Leonatos Mensen. There’s a chance we’ll live to see nightfall.
Looking through his monocular, Mensen watched the small ork force as it marched in his direction. The greenskins had yet to spot him and, thankfully, an accompanying Battlewagon and overhead Dakkajet were turning south and speeding toward the horizon.
The odds are a lot better now.
The captain lowered his viewer and called out. “Sergeant! Get the platoon deployed to the left of that mesa ahead. Put the Sentinels in front. Keep them in cover until the xenos get closer. Put the special weapons squad to the right of the mesa, and ask Lt. Paulso to kindly keep his command squad and the grenadiers in reserve.”
Let’s kill ourselves some greenskins, Mensen thought.
“Aye! Is that humies over there?” asked Urdhakh Blakfang, pointing to movement near a rocky mesa. “It is humies! Let’s go get ’em boyz.”
His small mob of boyz immediately picked up the pace, jogging forward with an enthusiasm that comes to every greenskin when there’s an upcoming fight. Some of the boyz began bellowing challenges at the foe ahead.
Blakfang had ambitions of being a true warboss one day, so he gave a lot of thought to taktiks. So he quickly started giving orders.
“I’ll take this bunch of boyz and charge straight at ’em. You fellas go around the other side of the rocks. Check out that shiny thing on the ground.”
‘Also, tell the Stormboyz to head this way. We got fresh meat for them.”
He turned to look at the runts of his mob—those that got the scraps left behind by the bigger orks. “You lot! Tell the grots to set up their guns over there, and you watch ’em. Make sure they don’t run off.”
Volley by Rank
Things are looking up, Mensen thought. The orks were splitting their forces. One small mob was hanging back with some xeno artillery pieces. The rest had divided into two groups and were heading his way.
“Get those Sentinels moving,” he ordered. “I want them in front as a speed bump. While the orks go for them, we’ll sit back and light them up with lasgun fire.”
Sure enough, the orks simply charged forward. The Sentinels deployed approximately 30 meters in front of 1st Platoon, blocking a direct attack on the infantry, and opened fire with their multi-lasers. The orks returned fire, but the xeno weapons couldn’t penetrate the walkers’ armor.
Here it comes, Mensen told himself. There was a sudden roar from the greenskins, and they broke into a run, charging directing at the Sentinels. The massive walkers actually staggered back at the sheer weight of the xenos as they threw themselves at their armored opponents, and Mensen watched with relief as the walkers held their ground against the fists, axes, and swords of the green beasts.
“Volley by rank!” yelled Lt. Paulso. “Fire!”
The air suddenly filled with the thin beams of lasgun fire, and the distinct crack of air superheating with each shot. The sound was gloriously loud. As he watched, Mensen saw that many direct hits seemed to only annoy the two-and-a-half-meter tall greenskins but still, with each volley, a handful of the hateful xenos would fall to the ground.
“First rank, fire!” Paulso kept screaming. “Second rank, fire!”
A Powerful Punch
“Get out of my way!” Blakfang swung his power klaw in an arc, shoving his boyz aside as he worked his way toward the humie walkers.
He’d lost control of his boyz. They were so intent on bringing down the walkers that they didn’t seem to realize they weren’t hurting the vehicles at all. Meanwhile, the humies’ fire was slowly starting to thin out the ranks of his boyz.
He finally shouldered his way to the closet walker and, readying himself, he put all his weight behind a punch. With a roar, he slammed his power klaw into the Sentinel’s lower torso and drove through the armor until his fist erupted out its back.
Flame and smoke erupted from the shattered walker and, with a mechanical shudder, it collapsed at Blakfang’s feet.
“What are you waiting for, you gits! Take the fight to the humies!”
For a few brief seconds, Mensen had felt some confidence. His Sentinels were buying precious time for his guardsmen to fire, and their volleys were whittling down the xeno threat.
But his brief sense of optimism was quickly squashed. First, the largest of the orks—clearly the mob leader—smashed one of his Sentinels to the ground. Next, several small explosions erupted in the midst of 1st Platoon, tossing half a dozen men into the air and knocking down another dozen.
It was the ork artillery. He could see the guns, half a kilometer away, and their fire was surprisingly accurate for greenskins. If a few more rounds landed on his command, his men wouldn’t have a chance of standing against the mob in front of them.
Mensen turned to the voxcaster at his side. “Tell the grenadiers to take out that artillery.”
The order given, the captain turned to watch the engine of a nearby Chimera roar to life. Smoke billowing from its exhaust pipes, the armored transported jerked into gear and began rolling forward. Picking up speed, it swung safely around the battling orks and aimed itself at the enemy artillery in the distance.
A new sound erupted overhead, and Mensen looked up. A new mob was dropping out of the skies. The troops called them “Stormboyz,” but whatever they called themselves, these orks wore jetpacks and were descending rapidly. Thankfully, though, not atop his command. Perhaps intimidated by 1st Platoon’s firepower, they dropped behind some ruins to the right.
Once again, Mensen turned to his voxcaster. “Tell Lt. Paulson to commit the rest of his reserve. Hold the flank.”
The Corvus Cluster is a Warhammer 40K blog documenting our gaming adventures in the fantastical sci-fi world of Games Workshop.
Categories: Hegira Campaign