Wednesday, 4 July 2018

Thy Soul to Keep, Part 12

The Traitors

Kalyustar and Admiral Gunnerson had spent long ours negotiating a deal. For some reason, the Kharadron wanted the meteor seized by Kalyustar's men, but the duardin were to stubborn to get an explanation out of them. Then the Skull had wispered. The meteor in exchange for help in retaking the Hurricane Bell and three quarters of any realmstone that had been quarried around it. They had finally settled for half of the realmstone and made their way to Blackrocks. They approached with the cover of darkness, easily overtaking the grot and zombie sentinels posted around Freebooter's Tower. Kalyustar brought the meteor inside, trusting his men to Gunnerson's command.

From the Tower battlements, Kalyustar saw Gunnerson deploying men and duardin in a long line, at the same time securing unguarded stashes of realmstone.
Your men can not support each other! Can you trust the duardin?

Kalyustar had not the time to ponder the Skull's warning. With raucos shouts, Kapitán da Leeva led the Rotmoon to reinforce Bolet and the handful of boyz that had remained with the mushroom-addled shaman at the Hurricane Bell.

The White Lady strode through a nearby field, zombies raising in her wake.

Yuri sounded the charge and the Cuirassiers advanced, pistols barking. Aethershots flew around them, wracking the Zombies and forcing the White Lady to take cover. When the Curaissiers got to her, the already badly wounded vampiress was quickly dispacthed.

Kalyustar hold the Skull high and magic and fear engulfed the Rotmoons. One orruk fell, the rest took shelter wherever they could. Only the shamans withstood the barrage, their return incantations unable to cross the wardings of Freebooter's Tower.

The last zombie clawed at the Cuirassiers, somehow managing to unhorse one of them.

The wind moaned from the east, a group of skywardens riding it. Not far from them, An'sec and his riders advanced, eerie laughs streaming out of the Knight's helm.

Soulchemist! You fool! If only you had listened and pledged your services to a true power!
The words still rang in Kalyustar's mind as the Raidho Othalas turned their guns on the Free Companies.

In a flash of greenish light, Pieter van Toorn emerged from his journey through the Soulbridge, just in time to see Gunnerson leading the charge against the Free Companies.

The Rotmoons stared in disbelief. Their brutish minds unable to take in what was happening, they regrouped in a copse.

The Curaisser rode over the zombie, rushed for a stash a realmstone, grabbed what he could and darted away, An'sec's riders hot on his heels.

As the Free Companies rallied from the shock and dived for cover, van Toorn's voice sounded loud over the din of battle.
"Wizard! See where you have taken your men!"

The Rotmoons stirred into action, returning to the stash they had left unguarded.

The Endrinriggers poured fire into the Free Companies, pinning them behind the trees where they had found shelter.

Pieter reached the humans' rear line has a second duardin charge hit home.

The Hurricane Bell tolled ominously. As the echo dwindled, lighting hit the Bell platform, resolving in the shapes of a retinue of Liberators. Surrounded by corposant, the Stormcast launched themselves against the Rotmoons.

An'sec's riders caught up with the fleeing Cuirassier. Soaring above him, they lopped off his head and plunged towards the realmstone guarded by the Rotmoons.

The Kharadron artillery opened up again, leaving only Kalyustar and van Toorn to face their assault.

A wave of raw magic rolled through Blackrocks. As Kalyustar lost control over his incantations, the unbridled energies crushed onto the Rotmoons. Green beams darted out of El Doctoro's eyes. A mushroom cloud of incredible proportions erupted from Bolet. Da Leeva was imbued by such frenzy to rival the greatest of Waaagh! rages. Both Stormcast and Hexwraith dissipated under the onslaught.

As Gunnerson's hammer smashed van Toorn to the ground, An'sec's laughter sounded over the battlefield again. The Hurricane Bell and the realmstone lacing the soil around it was still his.

Kalyustar dived through the trap door and slammed it behind him, intoning words of protection. The Kharadron hammered on it for a while, then left. The wizard reached one of the arrow slits and peered out. The Kharadron surrounded a pile of crates, their guns levelled at An'sec, Gunnerson staring up at the gheist. With a chilling rage howl, the Knight of Shrouds floated away.
'A scorned power is a power searching for new allies, Soulchemist. It is time you quit your qualms'.

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