Deathwatch - The Long Watch

Haarlock's Revenge Part 6
Haarlock must be stopped, no matter the cost!

Players – Marcus, Gunnar, Cormac, Alban
XP Gained – Deathwatch Characters 1000XP (Total 20,000 XP), +5 Renown, Acolytes 600xp (Total 7400XP)
Enemies Slain – 1 Defective Necron Legion, 1 Haarlock

The Acolytes aboard the Faustus make their way to Damaris, a Mechanicum Forgeworld in the Koronus Expanse in an attempt to rally troops, TItans and an other allies they can for the assault on Haarlock’s forces.

Upon arrival, Arch Magos Sigma Rho allows the parties to descend to his receiving room. When they arrive they see the Arch Magos busy attempting to defuse a dispute between the current ruler of one of Damaris’ Knight Moons and the scion of the family that used to rule the moon and claims it by right of succession.

The current family became rulers of the moon after the prior family’s scions died out, leaving no known heir. The Reekon family took the reins of power, and have guided the Moon and its orders of Knights for over 150 years of efficient and prosperous rule.

The former ruling family, led by Lord Mateus have returned to claim what is theirs by Writ of Succession. The current scion is a Rogue Trader of some considerable power, and while his ancestors were average rulers at best, he appears to be a man of some import and power. His fleet is quite powerful, but he views the money as a source of profit, rather than as knightly resource.

The Arch Magos is displeased to have to adjudicate this proceeding and demands that the Acolytes do it in exchange for his listening to their request.

After questioning both the current ruler and Lord Mateus, the Acolytes display a Solomonic level of wisdom and determine that while Lord Mateus shall be the de facto Governor of the feudal moon, all operations, command and administrative functions shall be controlled the Reekon family. Lord Mateus shall be allowed to retain some of the profits the moon generates.

Both men appear satisfied with this arrangements and pledge their support to the Acolytes cause.

Meanwhile, Arch Magos Sigma Rho grants the Acolytes request but only on the condition that any and all artifacts and relics recovered are forfeited to the Mechanicum first. The Acolytes agree and a month later a huge fleet of warships and troopships leave Damaris for the rendezvous point.

At the rendezvous point, the Faustus and the Imperial Fleet meet up with the Eldar fleet transporting the Deathwatch Squad. The Eldar lead the combined fleet to a Webway Portal that allows them access to the Tyrant Star’s location.

Upon arrival, a large Necron fleet awaits them, but thanks to the diplomacy of the Acolytes, the Eldar Fleet and Lord Mateus’ Rogue Trader fleet are able to hold them off and allow the Titan Landers and Troopships to land forces.

While many Guardsmen lose their lives in the hellish storm of Gauss and Tesla weaponry, between the Titans and the Eldar ground forces, a front line is established that begins to stretch the Necron lines just enough to allow the Deathwatch squad a weak point to strike at.

The Squad is ordered to break through the Necron lines, destroy Anti Air Pylons so that the Avenger can transport Titus and the Acolytes to the control center. The Squad is also ordered to kill Haarlock.

The Squad is granted near complete access to the Faustus’ armory. They requisition an Attack Bike and Predator Destructor, along with Storm Shields, Kraken Rounds, Melta Charges, Grenades, Meltaguns and various other accoutrements, to aid them in their mission.

As they approach the Necron lines, they are confronted by a Necron Legion of 1 Destroyer Lord, 2 Stalkers, 2 Lychguard, 1 Doomsday Ark, and Hordes of Warriors and Immortals.

Marcus and Gunnar take the attack bike in a daring flanking attack, while Alban and Cormac take the Predator around a ridge to attack the Pylons.

Although outnumbered, the Emperor and the Primarchs are truly with the Space Marines this day.

Gunnar shields his packmates with the Ice of Fenris, while Marcus organizes squad tactics with the power of Ultramar! Cormac paints a number “3” on the side of his Predator as he careens around the area, ramming and running over a plethora of Necrons. Alban exercises almost supernatural aim, crippling one of the Stalkers and the Doomsday Ark before they can do any damage.

Meanwhile the Necron elites perform awfully, missing constantly. It is up to the inferior Warriors to do any damage, and two of the Necrons manage to cripple the Predator’s engine, reducing it to almost no speed at all.

By then though the Marines have done what they needed to. Despite the Predator’s almost destroyed engine, Cormac manages to ram yet another Lychguard, killing it instantly. Alban takes out a Pylon with the Predator’s Autocannon, while Gunnar and Marcus, doing their best White Scars impression, manage to hit and run the remaining Pylon and Doomsday Ark with Melta Bombs, destroying them both in a single round of explosive vengeance.

The Necrons, utterly savaged and humiliated, withdraw.

The Avenger swoops in low and drops the squad off at Haarlock’s Command Post. Haarlock informs the Squad that he will kill them like he killed Centum, and Cutter, and that they will not stop him from destroying the Warp.

Haarlock wields a powerful Staff of Light, an Archaeotech Pistol and a shield of some sort.

Attending him is another Destroyer Lord, 2 Lychguard and Necron Warriors manning Gauss Cannon Turrets. It appears the Necrons do indeed have turrets.

Cormac leaps into action, using his Meltagun on the Destroyer Lord to do tremendous damage to it.

Haarlock them attempts to trap the Squad in a space-time bubble, but fails.

Alban and Marcus begin picking up Necron Warriors, but then the Lychguard charge Alban and Gunnar.

Haarlock then unleashes a Gaze of Death attack, draining 9 Strength and 10 toughness from Marcus. Alban almost felt the same, but drew on the power of his Chapter and the Emperor to avoid it!

Gunnar and the Lychguard begin dueling, while Alban attempts to withdraw from the Lychguard fighting him. As he moves back, he is hit by the Lychguard, almost losing half of his wounds!

Then the Necron gunners fire on Alban, taking him down to 0 wounds and a 3 on the critical chart. Alban then fires his bolter point blank at the Lychguard, momentarily forgetting that the Lychguard are armed with reflective shields that bounce fire back at the shooter! However Alban continues to be lucky and the shield fails, and the Lychguard is utterly devastated by the attack and killed.

Cormac then heals the Novamarine before he can be shot at again.

Haarlock meanwhile continues to blast the squad with esoteric and arcane powers. Things are looking grim.

Marcus, with Alban’s help, finishes off the Necron gunners, and takes aim at Haarlock with his bolter. Cormac yells at Marcus to stop, but it is too late. Marcus fires a shot at Haarlock that is reflected back at Marcus, piercing his stormshield and his armor and inflicting a hideous wound. Marcus then confirms to the squad that Haarlock has a shield as well.

Gunnar continues to dance with the Lychguard, with neither able to gain the upper hand. The Destroyer Lord is finally killed by Cormac when Alban steps up, loads his Heavy Bolter with metal storm rounds and instead of firing at Haarlock, fires at the ground around him.

Alban’s righteous fury utterly and completely overwhelms Haarlock. When the explosions end, Haarlock’s body is in pieces, raining down around the battlefield. On his face is a look of shock while Alban already is planning his next tattoo to commemorate this occasion.

With Haarlock dead, the Avenger drops Titus and the Acolytes off at the control center. As soon as Titus nears the controls, a rune shield appears and then dissipates to allow Titus entry, but no one else.

Titus, without knowing how, places Anaris on a special plinth and his body is completely ensconced in arcane fire.

With his mind linked to the infinity circuit of an entire craftworld, Titus commands all Eldar and Imperial Forces to withdraw immediately. The Necrons, with Haarlock destroyed, withdraw as well.

Meanwhile the Craftworld begins to resonate with immense power and suddenly a tear in reality appears! A gigantic warp portal appears, easily large enough to swallow the craftworld!

The Imperials flee to their landers while the Avenger rescues the Squad and the Acolytes. The Mechanicum sacrifices much, but they save their Titans and a majority of the Imperial Forces survive to fight another day. Of the Eldar, there is no sign.

Disturbingly, no reports of Cutter Tybalt are made. It appears he is still at large…

Once safely away, the Craftworld begins to move and it is swallowed whole by the warp portal! Gunnar receives a psychic message from Titus saying that this is the only way to ensure The Outsider can never escape…by placing it directly in the Warp!

Gunnar is also able to determine that Titus is now part of the Spirit Stone of Anaris and his body is no more…

Epilogue

Days later, on the Faustus, Chauncey and Praetus meet to toast fallen friends. Hack, Centum, Titus, Cutter, and even their own Inquisitor have all fallen in the line of duty. While both are eager to leave the Hecaton Rifts, there is a sense of melancholy about them.

When Praetus returns to his quarters, he hears something rattle in his desk drawer. He cautiously approaches it, with bolt pistol drawn. With everything that has happened, he is taking no chances.

Praetus opens the drawer and inside is Titus’ Eldar Rune Pendant, and it is glowing. Praetus is confused as Titus was wearing it when he entered the Tyrant Star.

When he touches it he hears Titus’ voice. It is ghostly and weak, as if sent from a long distance, but it is unmistakably Titus’.

Only one word is said.

Askellon

The rune’s glow fades away and the rest is silence.

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Haarlock's Revenge - Part 5
Anaris

Players – Marcus, Aethon, Gunnar, Cormac, Alban
XP Gained – Deathwatch Characters 500XP (Total 19,000 XP)
Enemies Slain – 1 Slaaneshi demon, Multiple Possessed Cultists, 1 Sandworm

The squad enters the Webway with the other Eldar and begin a journey to the Eye of Terror. On the way there, the Harlequin known as Ailill Nuada informs them that the Crone world is a dangerously lethal locale and that their time there will be limited. She also informs them that Anaris is located within the Temple of Sorrows, and that it will judge whether the Squad is worthy of the terrible burden of wielding the sword.

Upon arrival the Squad emerges on to an eerily quiet and pastoral scene. The sky is blue, fields of grass extend into the distance, and just a few hundred meters in the distance is the Temple of Sorrows.

However, as the squad gets closer to the entrance, they hear promises of death in the wind…With that disturbing last thought, the squad enters the temple.

Upon entry to the building, the Squad blacks out, and when they awaken they find themselves in a huge Colosseum. A crowd of Pre-Fall Eldar are in the seats of the stadium as an Eldar Lord announces the next bout! The Squad is without their weapons and must scrounge for what they can find.

With a mighty roar a huge sandworm burrows from beneath the ground and begins attacking the squad. Armored in mighty scales of dense chitin, the beast is mostly undeterred by their attacks until Aethon rips off one of the scales in a display of strength and bravery! Alban follows up with a well time throw of a spear that embeds itself in the flesh that used to be covered by the scale!

Meanwhile, Gunnar attempts to attack the Eldar Lord and is insulted when the Eldar calls him a coward! Gunnar attempts to strike at the Eldar, but a shield of immense psychic strength blocks him. Calling upon the icy winds of Fenris, Gunnar breaks through the shield but not without psychic fallout! Noxious fumes begin to pour in from a tear in the warp placing everyone at risk!

Aethon quickly jets over to assist Gunnar as the shield reforms behind them. Aethon critically and mortally wounds the Eldar Lord by stabbing his Combat Knife through the Eldar’s clavicle.

Meanwhile, back in the pit, Marcus, and then later Alban are almost eaten by the sandworm as it thrashes about in anger. Alban manages to sever one of the giant teeth lining the Sandworm’s mouth before being flung away. Cormac races in bravely and manages to destroy several tentacles that had been threatening the squad as well. Together the squad targets the worm’s exposed flesh to further weaken the beast.

Gunnar reopens a hole in the shield and Aethon charges through and lands on the Sandworm’s back and epically smashes through the heavily damaged flesh of the Sandworm, killing it utterly. Aethon emerges covered in viscera and ichor and the Squad blacks out again.

When they reawaken they are in manacles in front of a Space Marine Conclave. Black Templars, Red Hunters and Red Scorpion Space Marines each accuse the Marines of betraying humanity to work with the perfidious Eldar. All of the Squad, save for Aethon and Alban believe the illusion to be real, but all stand by their choice to enlist the aid of the Eldar.

They are each executed in turn.

The squad then awakens for the third time, with Marcus, Gunnar and Cormac each gaining the Peer (Eldar) talent and +5 Insanity.

In front of them is a statue of Isha crying tears as she holds a deceased Eldanesh. Next to the statue lay Anaris, the 100th Sword of Vaul and The Doom of Eldanesh. It is a greatsword, with a beautiful and haunting Spirit Stone in its pommel.

Titus walks over and grabs the blade and his eyes light up with arcane energies. With new authority in his voice he informs the Squad that it is time to go. Titus swings the blade and a portal to the outside appears.

Once through the Squad encounters a hellish landscape. The Eldar and Harelquins are fighting to keep the Webway entrance from being overrun, but between them and the Marines are a dozen possessed Cultists and a large slaaneshi demon.

Alban quickly devastates the demon with a profound display of accuracy and firepower, easily wiping out half of the beasts health. Aethon then jumps in and removes yet another 25% of it, leaving it near dead.

The demon then lashes Alban and moves him into melee combat, quickly realizing he is the main threat.

The rest of the squad charges in, but everytime they kill a cultist, a demon appears, and more cultist reinforcements arrive!

Marcus is then hit with a Krak Missile, almost killing him. Cormac heroically races back to Marcus and critically heals him, allowing him to continue.

Aethon then kills the slaaneshi demon by smashing Legacy of Nocturne into its back, destroying it utterly.

Alban is swarmed by Cultists in melee, and then a bridge is blown out from under him, causing him to fall into a chasm of Hellfire. Through sheer hatred of Chaos and a determination not to appear before the Emperor without completing his service to the Deathwatch, Alban climbs out and races to the Webway.

The squad then escapes out into the Webway and heads to the Rendezvous point, hoping that the Faustus and the Acolytes were able to gain the assistance of the Mechanicum and Imperial Guard for the assault on the Tyrant Star.

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Haarlock's Revenge - Part 4
A Hero Falls

Players – Marcus, Icthaylion, Aethon, Gunnar
XP Gained – Deathwatch Characters 500XP (Total 18,500 XP)
Enemies Slain – 2 Necron Deathmark Assassins, 2 Scarab Swarms (Magnitude 50), 1 Centum Mannus

Having discovered the origin story of the Tyrant Star, the squad continues its examination of the Eldar facility hidden on Hesperus II. Utilizing their knowledge of Eldar mythology, the Squad quickly recovers artifacts hidden in the structure that correspond to certain rooms in the facility. These artifacts are spherical and have a single unique Eldar rune on each of them. Each rune represents either an Eldar faction, deity, Craftworld or even myth. The squad surmises that these relics may unlock other parts of the facility when placed on the proper area.

While searching the facility, the squad dispatches a Wraithlord made decrepit with age. It poses almost no threat as the Squad brutally takes it down.

Afterwards, when the squad places the artifacts they have recovered on plinths designed to hold said relics, the central room of the structure undergoes a massive change. Where there used to be a forcefield preventing the squad from the middle, it is now gone and in its place is a massive, and beautiful, map of the Koronus Expanse.

On the map, glowing in the far western areas of the Expanse, deep within the Rifts of Hecaton, is a spherical craftworld. The squad quickly realizes that this is the physical location of the Tyrant Star.

At that moment, the voice of Haarlock is heard throughout the structure. He informs the squad that he has already figured out the location of the Star, and left the facility as is to determine whom, if anybody, is following him. He then lets the squad know that he is going to introduce them to someone who now sees the light.

Haarlock’s voice disappears, stating that he has a sector to save.

Down the steps comes a menacing figure, with the body of a Tech Priest, but wielding the staff of a Necron Cryptek. It is Centum Mannus, twisted and corrupted by Necron technology!

Flanking him are two swarms of Scarabs and two Deathmark Assassins! The battle commences as everyone dives for cover.

Gunnar howls in anger and calls down the power of Fenris with a vigorous game of Ice / Not Ice, giving his allies portable cover from the sudden blizzard. Centum responds by causing unnatural night to descend on the area and by shooting out thunderbolts and gauss blasts from his Necron Staff of Light.

Marcus responds by coordinating his squad efficiently and effortlessly, and absolutely devastates one of the Scarab swarms with his flamer, for Ultramar!

Icthaylion and Aethon stay behind cover, narrowly avoiding devastating Gauss blasts from the Necrons. They pour fire at their foes with Icthaylion hitting a Deathmark on the shoulder, only to see the machine repair itself at a rapid pace! For a few seconds, both sides pour fire at each other, with the squad losing cover minute by minute and the Necrons regenerating damage they sustain.

With his cover destroyed by Gauss fire, Gunnar breaks free of Marcus’ disciplined firing order, and charges headlong at the Deathmarks, only to see the Deathmark he attacked phase out of this dimension. Just as the Necron phases, a swarm of Scarabs engulfs the Space Wolf, tearing at his flesh and armor!

Fortunately for Gunnar, Guilliman is with him this day as Marcus quickly swaps in Metalstorm rounds in to his Bolter, and brings fiery, explosive justice to the enemies of the Emperor! In a single devastating round, Marcus destroys the swarm, saving his brother Marine.

However, Marcus, Aethon and Icthaylion have troubles of their own as Centum begins marching upon their positions, firing Gauss and Lightning at their rapidly evaporating cover. Aethon takes this moment to finally unleash his full potential in melee combat, and descends upon Centum on wings of fire and justice, wielding the hallowed relic “Legacy of Nocturne.”

Aethon dodges Centum’s attacks and lands a mighty hit on Centum, smashing him asunder and into the nearby wall. Centum lays dazed and neutralized in front of a completely destroyed wall.

Meanwhile Gunnar is shot by the Deathmarks several times, leaving him at one wound remaining. He charges into melee range of both of them to neutralize their sniping and manages to dispatch one his force weapon. However that leaves him open to the other Deathmark! The Necron swings his weapon to club the Space Wolf to death but in epic fashion Gunnar parries the blow and counterattacks, killing the Necron! His armor utterly savaged, Gunnar lets loose an icy howl after winning the thrilling game of Ice / Not Ice.

Aethon then walks over to the disabled Centum seeking to finish his prey. Centum, his sensibilities returned to him by the destruction of so much of the Necron technology controlling him, warns that Haarlock has a Necron army at his disposal, including Titan level machines and weaponry. He then tells the squad to give his body to the Mechanicum in exchange for their support in fighting Haarlock.

Aethon then asks for Centum’s full name, and upon hearing it, executes Centum Mannus for heresy.

The squad then finds an Eldar Spiritsone containing the soul of a Farseer named Eletherel. He lets the squad know that the Tyrant Star has kept the Outsider trapped for eons, but that it vents out the mad energy the Outsider produces in special psychic vents that are normally supposed to release into uninhabited space. However, the infinity circuit controlling the craftworld must be damaged and that explains why the Tyrant Star has been “manifesting” around inhabited systems. This accounts for the appearance of the Star all these past centuries.

The Farseer deduces that Haarlock must have traveled, psychically, up one of these vents and become trapped within the Star. However now that Haarlock has returned he will want to find the actual physical location of the star to free The Outsider. Fortunately the Rifts of Hecaton are a maze of warp storms, black holes and other stellar phenomenon that make travel extremely deadly. It will take Haarlock some time to chart a path through, even with Necron technology.

The Farseer informs the squad that they should head to the Expanse and find an Eldar Corsair group called the Crow Spirits, as they are guardians of the Tyrant Star and aligned with Craftworld Alaitoc. They will be able to provide access to the Webway in order to arrive at the Star first. They will also be able to provide a way to get the key to the Tyrant Star’s control center, the legendary 100th Sword of the Eldar, Anaris.

The Squad then returns to the Faustus, and there is a lively debate as to what to do next. Some advocate ignoring the Eldar entirely, and not involving the Mechanicum at all. Others voice the need for any and all support, particularly in the face of a Necron army. Contacting the Crow Spirits seems to be roundly rejected.

A compromise is soon reached. Titus and the Squad will return to the surface and use the Eldar Wraithbone to contact Craftworld Alaitoc directly. They will petition the Eldar for armed support and, when Haarlock is defeated, turn on the Eldar as necessary.

They institute this plan and after a few hours of psychic calling into the void, Alaitoc answers…in force. Harlequins appear as if from nowhere, surprising Gunnar completely. 2 full squads of Dire Avengers emerge as well, flanking a Warlock and a Farseer. Outnumbered and Outgunned, the Squad holds fire.

The Farseer removes her helmet and introduces herself as Thirianna. She is clearly disdainful of the Mon-Keigh around her and quickly gets into an argument with Titus.

However tensions are cooled as the threat of Haarlock and the Outsider are discussed. Thirianna remarks that Titus has been marked by fate to wield Anaris, even if she doesn’t understand it. However she notes that to wield Anaris is to accept your own doom.

Thirianna then informs them that if they want the help of Alaitoc that they are to leave immediately via the Webway to the resting place of Anaris…the Eye of Terror. Specifically an Eldar Croneworld. These worlds were the capitals of the Eldar civilization prior to the fall, and their location deep in the Warp prevents the Necrons from retrieving the blade and freeing The Outsider.

The squad and Titus agree, with a reluctant Gunnar pulled into the Webway by the other Marines. In orbit, Acting Captain William York, Inquisitor Scythia and the rest of the Acolytes set course for the nearest Mechanicum forgeworld in order to acquire Titan level support, specifically the forgeworld currently repairing a certain Imperator Class Titan liberated by the Acolytes only a few months ago…the Dominar Rex.

With that the Faustus, leaves orbit while the Deathwatch Marines and Titus begin a perilous voyage to the Eye of Terror itself.

Not ice indeed.

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Haarlock's Revenge - Part 3
Blood in the Boardroom

Players – Pikey, Silon, Owen, William York

XP Gained – DH Characters 200XP + 100 Bonus XP for Achievement in Creative Problem Solving for a total of 300XP for the DH crew. Deathwatch characters gain zero XP at this time.

Enemies Slain – 2 Wraithguard, Sean the Technician, His roommate, and one low quality corpse encompassing rug.

Evidence Acquired – Lord Chauncey’s assignment to the Deathwatch, the refit of the Faustus, and Cutter’s transformation.

With Silon and Owen hidden, Kenchiro approaches Titus in the truck. However in their attempt to ambush Kenchiro, one of them makes a noise and Kenchiro draws pistols on both of them. A standoff ensues.

Inside the strip club, Pikey attempts to move to reinforce Owen and Silon and runs into a bouncer at the club who refuses to let Pikey out the back door. Pikey walks by the bouncer even after the bouncer fires a warning shot at him.

William then intimidates the piss out of the bouncer to the point where the bouncer willingly signs up for naval duty shoveling coal.

With a 4 on 1 situation brewing, Kenchiro lowers his weapons while the team radios in for a safehouse for interrogation. There, the team finds out that Kenchiro is actually Praetus Vorenus and has been under an alter ego for several years after his squad was murdered.

Inquisitor Scythia dispatches Gunnar Verdand in the Deathwatch Thunderhawk “Avenger” to pick up Praetus and “ask him some questions.”

Meanwhile, back on planet, the Acolytes decide to investigate Lord Chauncey and his operations at Hyperion. They know Halo Devices are being smuggled to Scintilla via his freighters and to confirm his involvement, Silon hacks into the Hyperion networks to determine Chauncey’s itinerary for the past few years. They discover that he is due for a trip in 2 weeks and that there have been black out moments in his prior travels where his location cannot be accounted for. They also find out that large sums of money have been going to a black project.

The squad then decides to plant a listening device in Chauncey’s office to acquire more intel, and decide to plan and execute a Shadowrun.

They head to a bar known to be frequented by tech specialists that work for Hyperion in the hopes of using Owen’s psychic powers to mind control one of them after lowering his mental defenses by drinking him under the table. The plan is to Dominate a tech specialist and have Owen and the tech walk into Hyperion on a forged work order to update software on Chauncey’s personal workstation.

The Acolytes head into the bar and proceed to debauch themselves…poorly. Only Pikey is able to truly carouse with Sean. Even with the assistance of two depraved floozies, the tech specialist, Sean, leaves the bar without having gotten drunk. Owen attempts to mind control him, but fails.

Owen then pursues Sean across the bar, and fails again at mind controlling him.

Owen then pursues Sean across the parking lot, and fails again at mind controlling him.

Finally, with Sean in his car and about to leave, Owen pounds on the driver side window, and with his nose bleeding uncontrollably, and a massive migraine threatening to overcome him, manages to mind control Sean. Owen flops onto the backseat and tells Sean to drive home.

The rest of the Acolytes follow and when they arrive at Sean’s residence, they hear Sean’s roommate call out asking is there. The roommate is shortly thereafter sack and hammered and thrown into a closet. Silon then tranquilizes the roommate into next week.

Silon also forges a new ID for Owen and after cleaning up his bloody mess, they rest for the night.

The next morning Sean escorts Owen to Hyperion HQ. They forge a work order at Sean’s desk and head up several stories to Chauncey’s office. There, they pass a security check and head into the office itself.

The “bug” in this case is actually Titus’ Eldar pendant. It will allow Owen to astrally project through the device without setting off any psychic alarms, as the surge of energy won’t be occurring within Hyperion, but several miles away.

Owen plants the bug in a flower pot and uses Spectral Hand to place the bug without being seen near the plant. Owen also sees Niles, Chauncey’s Eldar Servoskull. The skull appears to be burned out, as if it had resisted great psychic power.

As they leave, Owen notices the secretary get a call and look directly at him. Knowing the jig is up somehow, Owen hurries to leave. However as they near the elevator, two Men in Black come out with pistols drawn and order them both to stop and get on the floor.

Owen then opens his mind to the warp and channels every bit of energy he can through Sean’s poor mind, instantly burning out every neuron in the technician’s mind, but not before putting on the appearance that Sean is an unrestrained rogue psyker whose mind just went critical. A full on warp hurricane occurs, throwing everyone around the room and buying time for Owen to run past and down the elevator.

The last thing Owen sees as the elevator doors close is Sean wreathed in blue energy laying waste to the floor. Owen leaves the elevator and the building as SWAT teams arrive. The Acolytes then head back to Sean’s house, kill his roommate, bundle him up in a rug and toss him off a bridge into deep water.

With the bug in place, the team is able to listen to Chauncey’s conversations. Chauncey is enraged at the security breach and cancels his upcoming trip. He then asks if the Faustus is ready and is told that it is.

Upon relaying that information to Inquisitor Scythia, Marcus Valen takes the Avenger and determines that the Faustus is in Scintilla orbit at a secret Imperial Navy shipyard. The ship is now completely black and has the Deathwatch sigil on its side! It appears that Chauncey’s secret project is known. As a high ranking Acolytes of the Ordo Xenos he has been tasked with retrofitting the Faustus for Deathwatch use and it looks as if the ship is nearly ready.

With this knowledge the Acolytes decide to openly confront Chauncey. Chauncey receives the Acolytes in a boardroom overlooking Scintilla Prime. He angrily tosses the Eldar Pendant back at Titus, but proceeds to explain what he can.

It turns out Niles protected Chauncey from possession, using its Eldar wraithbone structure to deflect Haarlock’s assault. Chauncey is also committed to exploring the Koronus Expanse and allowing the Inquisition and Deathwatch enhanced travel options in that newly discovered area.

At that moment, Owen sees a Valkyrie flying low directly at them. Shouting a warning, he raises a psychic shield just as hundreds of rounds shatter the windows and shred the boardroom. As the fire dies down, they see a man in armor and a skull helmet jump from the Valkyrie and into the boardroom. They also hear gunshots and cries for help from other areas of the floor.

The assailant drops a smoke grenade and begins his one man assault on the Acolytes. A few well placed shots by the Acolytes shatter his helmet revealing the face of Cutter Tybalt underneath! However his face is disfigured by a Halo Device! Cutter flees out the window and escapes, and while none of the Acolytes are hurt, Chauncey is told that detailed maps of the Koronus Expanse were stolen. Chauncey laments that every time the Acolytes come to his building, it gets destroyed.

With Chauncey cleared, and Cutter’s fate determined, the Acolytes and the Deathwatch head to Hesperus II in the Faustus to confront Centum Mannus.

When they arrive, the Deathwatch take the lead. They find the archaeological dig site seemingly abandoned with only a narrow staircase leading underground. Inside they find an Eldar structure, made of wraithbone, buried by the sands of time.

In the main hall they see a massive energy shield obscuring some object at its center. Branching from the hall are numerous passageways. The squad explores one hallway and encounters two ancient Wraithguard, which are quickly dispatched. At the end of the hallway they find an Eldar Singing Spear and several spherical wraithbone objects with different runes inscribed on each.

They also find pedestals with indentations as if a spherical object used to be placed there. In one such room they see the Rune for Asuryan, the head of the Eldar Pantheon. In another they find a pedestal near a room depicting a great beast being led to a cage.

Finally, the squad heads down a small hallway containing three rooms. In the first room, a Great War is depicted with Eldar fighting horrific beasts and devastating destruction. In the second room they see the Eldar being known as Vaul, forging a great cage. In the third room they see Cegorach, the Gret Harlequin, leading the beast into the cage after tricking it into eating many of its fellow beasts. Over the cage lays the sigil of Asuryan.

The squad pools its knowledge of Eldar myth and history and come to a devastating realization.

The beast is Tsara’noga, otherwise known as the C’tan being “The Outsider.” Haarlock is after the physical location of this cage and is most likely attempting to free it. Haarlock may have touched minds with The Outsider many centuries ago, which explains Haarlock’s absolute menace and insanity. As to how this happened, it quickly becomes clear that the Tyrant Star is not just a symbol of madness…it is madness. It is the cage that the Outsider is currently imprisoned in. As to how Haarlock first encountered the Tyrant Star without physically finding it is, a as of yet, unsolved mystery.

The squad then continues to explore the rest of the Eldar structure…

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Haarlock's Revenge - Part 2
Praetus has fallen, long live Praetus!

XP Gained: 200
Enemies Slain: 1 Shoggoth, 4 Cultists, 1 Cult Witch
Evidence Acquired: Hyperion Cargo Containers containing Halo Devices. Shipping records do not match soil and bacterial samples showing the containers came from worlds with Xeno-Archaeological dig sites, including Hesperus II. Cult Witch had Gauss Technology and an artifact containing light from the Tyrant Star. Letter detailing shipments signed “H.”

After rescuing Titus from the Scintilla Psyker Asylum, the Acolytes decide to investigate Praetus’ death next. They learn that he had been promoted to an interrogator, and was investigating the discovery of a Halo Device at Scintilla customs. A foolish nobleman had allowed the device to be discovered. While the nobleman and his family were executed, Praetus was tasked with determining the source and destination of the device.

His investigations revealed that a new cult had taken root in Scintilla, the Cult of the Unburdened Mind. He also noted that they featured an “Eye over the Galaxy” Tattoo. Finally, amongst his records was video footage of the assault the cost him his life.

The video shows Praetus and his squad breaching a slum building moments before the area is riddled with bullets and grenades. The devastation and is total and Praetus and his team are declared dead, with burnt remains of bodies removed from the wreckage.

The Acolytes investigate the ruined remains of the area and discover a sewer entrance below the wreckage. However the lid is large, bulky and quite heavy and Praetus would only have been able to escape if he knew in advance that as soon as he entered that building that he would have to open the lid and escape.

The Acolytes enter the sewer and Owen and Titus are able to track Praetus’ psychic presence in the area. It is old and barely existent, but they are able to deduce that he did at least survive the ambush. After traversing some of the sewers they see an Eldar rune carved into the side of the wall. The rune matches that worn by Titus in his pendant.

Near the rune they hear noises and when they go to investigate, Owen perceives “still areas” in the warp. The warp isn’t blocked per se, but completely still, as if it isn’t resonating with what occurs in the material world.

They soon see what is causing the disturbance. A huge tentacled beast from their nightmares, a shoggoth, appears and begins to attack them. It grabs Pikey and is about to devour him, when Owen uses his mind to catch Pikey as a grenade is dropped into the beasts mouth. The beast is mortally wounded and finally put out of its misery moments later.

Around the corner, the Acolytes find a cult in the middle of an initiation. A new aspirant is attached to a Halo Device and begins his transformation into a new powerful member of the cult.

The Acolytes ambush the cults, but it is a hard won affair. The Cult Witch uses arcane technologies to instill madness in the Acolytes, and attempting to flay Silon with her Gauss pistol. The cultists attack with blade and gun, and even when killed, rise up again when the Witch uses a strange orb radiating dark power.

Finally, Lieutenant William York, of his Divine Majesty’s Imperial Navy, charges forth, stabbing the Witch in the gut, and decapitating her in two well executed strokes. The rest of the Acolytes quickly dispatch the remaining cultists and discover to their horror four crates of Halo Devices in the cult warren.

Two of the boxes contain 5 devices each. The other two are empty…

On their way back to the safehouse, the Acolytes notice they are being followed by Interrogator Kenchiro Amaya. They detour to a seedy strip club and split the party. Silon and Owen lay in wait with Titus while Pikey and Lt. York enter the strip club to shower and cleanse themselves.

Interrogator Amaya, thinking no one is by the truck containing Titus, approaches it, and opens the rear latch with his metal augmetic arm and states, “Titus, it has been a long time my friend. Come we must leave quickly.”

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Haarlock's Revenge
The Curious Demise of Titus Metallus

XP Earned – 200
Enemies slain – 1 Haarlock Neural Clone, 8 Commandos
Clues Collected – Titus’ vision, Eye over the Galaxy Tattoo

We open with Inquisitor Scythia briefing the team on the current state of the Faustus’ Acolytes. While she can’t quite collect full dossiers yet, she does have some initial information.

Praetus Vorenus was slain several years ago in an ambush by cultists. He had been promoted to Interrogator and was investigating a new cult in Scintilla when he was gunned down. The perpetrators were never identified.

Titus Metallus began exhibiting signs of dementia and schizophrenia, claiming that someone was attempting to kill his past. He was placed in the Scintilla Psyker Asylum for study and treatment under heavy guard.

Centum Mannus has become an expert in xeno-archaeology and medicine, and is leading a team of Mechanicum explorators on the planet Hesperus II in search of archaeotech.

Cutter Tybalt disappeared from service several years ago and is rumored to be a mercenary for hire.

Lord Chauncey has become head of the Hyperion Shipping Cabal, a company with 12 bulk freighters, and numerous intra-system transports. The HSC is a front for the Inquisition and is used to ferry supplies, teams and Inquisitors to various locations.

Inquisitor Scythia orders the team to investigate Titus, as he is on Scintilla and the easiest to access. Their instructions are simple. Interrogate TItus by any means necessary and collect evidence as to whom Haarlock has possessed or turned to evil.

The team arrives at the SPA and are greeted by Dr. Herman Ostmann, the physician in charge of the ward. After relieving the Acolytes of most of their weaponry, he informs the team that TItus is kept in stasis, and should he be outside of stasis, he would have less than 1 month to live at his current rate of cerebral degeneration.

Numerous guards, and untouchable commissars patrol the hallways of the Asylum, ready to intervene if a psyker somehow breaches containment.

When they see Titus, they see that he is weakened by years of inactivity. When roused by the Acolytes he struggles to concentrate, but when he is asked directly about his former team and Haarlock, he emits a burst of psychic energy and the team is transported into his mind!

The Acolytes wake to find themselves in front of an English manor home, like that of Downton Abbey. While the mansion is magnificent it is clearly falling apart and in decline. When they knock on the door, a man in a Butler costume appears who introduces himself as Praetus Vorenus. They are led inside where Cutter Tybalt and Lord Chauncey are discussing issues of commerce while sipping on fine port and brandy. A gilded servitor offers the Acolytes drinks. Outside the sun seem perpetually stuck right at sunset.

The team warily begins speaking to the other “guests” and they realize that they are in Titus’ mind as it is dying. In an adjacent room, the Drawing Room, they see that a dinner table is set for Titus and his old team, but all the seats save one lay empty and the invitations to his teammates are unopened. Outside the sun has set, and Titus’ body lays dead. The Acolytes come to the conclusion that this must reflect Titus attempts to call out to this team for help and represents a dark future.

Back in the main room, Titus arrives, escorted by Centum Mannus. His body is weak and emaciated, and his gaze confused at best. When pressed on his memories, he cannot remember anything and the guests attempt to console him.

The Acolytes split up and begin investigating the various rooms again in the hopes of reawakening Titus’ mind. Owen Pearson examines a nearby cloak room and finds Titus old cloak and armor, while Charlie’s character, a lieutenant in the Imperial Navy explores the upstairs Library.

The library seems to contain Titus’ memories, but is guarded by his greatest fear that has been allowed to roam unchecked, that of the Tyranid menace and the oppressive power of the Hive Mind. With Titus’ fear uncontrolled the Acolytes cannot recover Titus’ memories.

Back downstairs, the Acolytes do their best Gandalf impression and shove the “guests” aside and put Titus in his old armor and cloak. As they do so, the guests disappear and the gilded servitor turns into Haarlock!

Haarlock introduces himself as a neural clone meant to watch over Titus to ensure he never gets his memories back, but also to act as a canary in a coal mine to catch anyone coming after Haarlock. He informs the Acolytes that the real Haarlock has been informed and that a kill team is on its way. When Owen Pearson attempts to break the connection between the neural clone and the real Haarlock he is exposed to the raw madness of the Tyrant Star.

However, in all the chaos of the moment, Titus old Eldar pendant falls from his armor. It glows with pure light and the Haarlock clone is clearly disturbed by it. The Acolytes give the pendant to Titus, who then seems to recover his faculties. As the pendant glows brighter, a painting of Titus on the wall, which featured him in his prime also begins to glow, and Titus’ Force Glaive manifests itself. Titus picks up the blade and slays both Haarlock and the Tyranid monstrosity, freeing his mind and also subduing his fear.

He then relates what he knows to the Acolytes in the form of a vision. During the Faustus’ team’s attempt to take down Haarlock, they were not able to sufficiently destroy the portal that would have allowed Haarlock to leave the Tyrant Star. Instead they could only destroy it’s ability to manifest physically. Haarlock was able to manifest spiritually and with a single wave of his hand he knocked out all the Acolytes save Titus. In addition to knocking them out he also altered their memories to believe that they had destroyed him utterly.

Titus’ powerful mind was able to resist, and so Haarlock was forced to use the full power of the Tyrant Star to subdue him. This was able to alter Titus’ memories but also left him psychologically damaged, which is what resulted in his admission to the Asylum. However before Titus passed out from the assault, he saw Haarlock’s spiritual form hover over Lord Chauncey…

With the vision ended the Acolytes return to the real world where they hear numerous gunshots and cries of bloody murder. Mostly unarmed, the Acolytes are saved by some quick thinking and intelligent counter-tactics. Pikey had smuggled in an autopistol and begins taking shots at the attackers, while Silon’s inbuilt weaponry begins making short work of the commandos. Owen Pearson takes control of one of the commando’s minds and uses it to display the location of the other commandos, allowing the Acolytes to plan their escape with care. Later, Silon overloads the com systems of the commandos with a burst of shrieking static, disabling several commandos momentarily and allowing the rest of the Acolytes to overpower them, recover their gear and escape. Before they leave the notice that the commandos all have a tattoo of an eye over an image of the galaxy on their cheeks.

They return to their safehouse and awaiting them are the full dossiers of Praetus, Lord Chauncey, Centum and Cutter, with orders to investigate, each of them and determine who is Haarlock.

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Assault upon the Decay of Honour - Part 3
Hope Descends on Angel's Wings

XP Awarded – 1600
Renown +40
Enemies Slain: Over 100 Genestealers, 2 Lictors, 1 Tyranid Warrior, 2 Bat beasts, 2 Cybernetic Warriors, 1 Dei-Phage, 1 Cathedral, over 9 thousand renegade cultists.

Kill Ratios -

1st Place – Icthaylion with a 9000:1 ratio.
2nd Place – Alban Xanthus with close to a 100:1 ratio.

Honours awarded -

Marcus Valen – Iron Skull
Alban Xanthus – Marksman Award
Icthaylion – Opus Mechanicus
Aethon Harker –
Gunnar Verdand – Purity Seal

Having slain Za’al and recovered the missive from the Inquisition that he was carrying, the squad continues to explore the Night Lords vessel in the hopes of recovering the Legacy of Nocturne.

Traveling through a dark hallway and past a bulkhead, the squad finds itself in the remains of what looks to be the ship’s arboretum. At one end, flanked by two silent robotic sentinels rests the Legacy of Nocturne. The squad sense a trap and positions itself accordingly while Aethon retrieves the relic.

Upon touching it, a force cage is erected over the Black Shield, while the robotic sentinels power up due to cables inserted into their back. They possess fearsome firepower and quickly move to engage the Squad.

In a heroic display of accuracy, the Deathwatch Marines manage to shoot out the power pylons, shutting down the Sentinels. Meanwhile Aethon successfully interfaces with the Salamander relic, activating its true potential. It is a 2-Handed Thunderhammer with a limited ability to teleport.

The squad further explores the ship, encountering ancient data recordings, civilians and even old STC data. Aethon asks several people what their name is.

The squad moves past the Night Lords vessel and approaches the Storm Wardens ship entombed in the Hulk. As they travel, they awaken a Tyranid warren that begins spewing out Genestealers at a horrifying rate.

The squad buys time for Icthaylion to open the doors to the MacLir, with Alban Xanthus exacting a devastating toll from the Tyranids for every step they take. Gunnar almost overextends himself, but manages to break free thanks to the power of Fenris itself.

Once inside the MacLir, they meet Cormac MacGregor, Apothecary of the Storm Wardens and last remaining Astartes of the MacLir. He, and the few Chapter Serfs that survived the collision with the Decay of Honour, have been trapped in their vessel for several years. As the Hulk enters the warp, he informs the squad that while one of the hanger bays appears to be operational, the hanger opening faces the hulk itself, preventing any exit. In addition the shuttles contained therein have no warp capability.

As the squad recuperates, MacGregor heals up Watch-Captain Antaeus enough for him to reawaken. While still in need of dedicated medical attention, Antaeus is now strong enough to move around, stay conscious and if necessary, fight.

When the Hulk exits the Warp, one of the serfs checks the sensor data to determine where they are. They appear to be near the planet Grangold, home of the Cathedral of the Blessed Saint, burial site of St. Drusus. In orbit around the planet, a fierce battle between two fleets is taking place, and on the surface, a major ground war appears to be fast approaching, with forces attempting to siege the Cathedral.

The attacking forces appear to be Imperial Guard with Inquisition support, while the defending forces appear to be flagellants, militia and renegades.

As the Hulk passes through the conflict zone, ordnance from the fleet engagement impacts the Hulk, causing tremendous damage. The chunk of the Hulk carrying the MacLir dislodges itself and is now deorbiting and threatening to land on the Imperial Guard!

Cormac informs the squad that the squad that the MacLir’s engines can be re-lit, and used to alter the orbital trajectory just enough to avoid wiping out the Guard forces. The serfs, Cormac and Antaeus can then use the hangar bay to escape, while the squad uses a boarding torpedo to make their escape from the engineering deck.

The squad heads deep into the MacLir and encounters no resistance on their way to the engine room. However as soon as they enter, genestealers swarm the entire area. Every squad member holds the line as Icthaylion does his best to reactivate the engines. Marcus coordinates the actions as a True Ultramarine should and Alban again reaps a devastating toll amongst the Genestealer Horde.

Not to be outdone, Aethon and Cormac take a defensive stance and ensure no genestealer passes by them, while Gunnar uses the anger of Fenris itself to blast away any Tyranids that get too close to Alban.

Icthaylion is beset upon by a Lictor, but manages to buy enough time for Aethon to literally hammer the Lictor into paste. (Action begins at 16 seconds)

Icthaylion repowers the engines and alters the course of the MacLir to impact the Cathedral of the Blessed Saint. However Antaeus reports that the way to the Hanger bay is blocked by Tyranids.

The squad chooses to aid Antaeus and the serfs rather than escaping themselves, earning bonus renown, and in keeping with their Chapter Demeanors.

The squad mercilessly shoots, hacks and blasts its way through dozens of genestealers, and eventually clears a path for Antaeus and the serfs to escape, along with the message regarding Haarlock.

The squad then piles into a beat up, half functioning shuttle that is more or less pushed out the side of the MacLir.

As the shuttle plunges towards the planet, a lictor jumps on the shuttle and punches a hole in the windshield, but Aethon manages to barrel roll his way out of the situation, causing the Lictor to burn up in atmospheric reentry.

However the shuttles engines are overstrained, and in the resulting crash landing, Aethon loses a leg and Gunnar loses an arm.

The squad finds itself surrounded by Inquisitor Scythia, her acolytes and some very surprised Sororitas and Iron Hands.

In the background a mushroom cloud of cleansing fire is all that remains of the Cathedral and the warp entity that had stolen St. Drusus’ corpse.

In a debrief, the real threat emerges. Haarlock has apparently not only survived but actually managed to return to the Calixis Sector. The squad and Scythia’s acolytes must now team up to find out what happened and if anything can be done to stop him.

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Assaut upon the Decay of Honour Part 2

Players: Aethon Harker (Charlie), Gunnar Verdand (Jon), Marcus Valen (Craig).

Enemies slain: 1 Gargantuan Kraken, 3 Ogryn Berserkers, 2 Ogryn Heavy Gunners, 50 Cultists, 1 Za’al the Flayer

XP Awarded: 700XP

The squad begins the session with Aethon being slowly crushed to death in mid air by a giant tentacle from the hideous Kraken dwelling in the deep waters of the cargo bay. The Kraken attempts to bring Aethon down in order to swallow him whole but the wily Blackshield has other plans. Aethon engages his Jump Pack at maximum thrust and is able to escape the grasp of the Kraken!

The squad begins throwing grenades and demolition charges at the beast but the majority of the damage appears to result in nothing more than cracked scales and columns of exploding water.

Gunnar moves close to the water’s edge and engulfs the beast in psychic fire, only for the Kraken to rise forth in an unholy burst of energy and swallow the Space Wolf whole!

Marcus, being prepared for anything, switches to Hellfire rounds and decimates the beast with accurate shot after accurate shot. Aethon lands on the Kraken’s back and begins clawing his way towards it’s eye with punishing stabs of his weapons.

The beast is bleeding horribly from multiple stab and bolter wounds, when its eye explodes and a gout of psychic fire bellows forth, finally ending the beast’s unnatural life. Emerging from its now burnt eye socket is Gunnar, covered in (real) acid. Gunnar strips three of the Kraken’s scales from its body as trophies and the squad readies itself to move south.

After a few doors, Aethon hears the sounds of activity on the other side of a closed bulkhead. The squad enters breach formation and Aethon opens the door while covering fire arcs overhead. Aethon sees an Ogryn carring a large ripper gun, and in a show of intimidation, Aethon forces it and a squad of cultists to panic and flee.

Aethon grabs the Ogryn and drags him back into the room the squad has barricaded itself in and begins interrogating the beast in front of the once again closed door. The squad learns that the Kraken’s lair hides an underwater passage to one of Za’al’s rooms.

At that moment the squad hears the sounds of activity on the other side of the door and quickly back up after telling the Ogryn to stay where he is. Not a few seconds later the door explodes as Night Lord cultists attempt to flush out the Marines.

Pieces of Ogryn flesh are splattered everywhere and the room becomes an abbatoir. Gunnar charges in the doorway and is battered by las and heavy calibre fire but manages to let loose more psychic flame, decimating several squads of cultists.

Three Ogryn berserkers charge through and give the squad some difficulty, but Aethon disarms one with his power sword while Marcus and Gunnar finish off the other. Soon the Ogryn are dead but not before having left the squad a bit shaken up and wounded.

The squad heads back to the Kraken’s lair and after sealing their armor with yet more repair cement make their via underwater passage to a small alcove where some loyal crew members spent their last moments in prayer. Gunnar recovers a small coin featuring the Emperor’s visage in memory of their devotion and loyalty and vows vengeance to the very gates of Morkai against the Night Lords.

The squad then encounters a door marked with the sigil of the Night Lords. Opening the door they find themselves in a room of unnatural darkness. Their suits built in night vision fails to function and even the acoustics of the room are off.

However, there are several holographic dioramas, pictures and other displays of various Night Lords triumphs and victories on display in what can only be a Night Lords Hall of Remembrance. Scenes from the Horus Heresy, the Siege of Terra, battles great and small across the millenia play out in the air itself. All victories of the Night Lords.

The sound of Za’al’s taunting cuts across the room and Marcus Valen dodges a slice of a power sword at the very last moment, his Space Marine senses giving him a second’s warning before Za’al would have slain him. Marcus attempts to return fire with a flamer, but without being able to see Za’al, his shot is wasted.

Gunnar removes his helmet and enters solo mode, fully embracing the Wolf within. His Fenrisian gene seed gives him the gift of Dark Sight and he spots Za’al. He attempts to use his Avenger power on him, but Za’al dodges.

Aethon takes some repair cement and pours it around himself, forming a barrier of rapidly hardening ceramite.

Za’al charges Aethon on another Hit and Run attack, which Aethon not only parries but also successfully counter-attacks, in complete darkness. As Za’al leaps away, the now hardened repair cement on Za’al’s feet ruin his stealth (as if Za’al was running on sand), allowing Aethon and Marcus to follow the noise of his footsteps.

Za’al is lit up with flames again, this time sticking. Marcus then takes a full promethium canister from his flamer and throws it at Za’al, and the ensuing fireball completely engulfs the Night Lord.

Za’al, now stripped of his greatest defense, stealth and misdirection, attempts to flee. On fire and badly wounded, he flees southward at a quick pace. However, Aethon activates his jump pack and catches up with the Night Lord, and thrusts his power sword clean through Za’al’s back, killing him in true Raven Guard style.

Za’al crumples to the floor, his maniacal laughter still on his lips as the flames burn out. He does not carry the Legacy of Nocturne on his body.

However, the squad notices a black cylindrical scroll tube fall from Za’al’s belt. On it is a gold inlaid spider, and the top is sealed with a complex Inquisitorial key. If opened without proper clearance it would destroy the contents of the tube. It appears as if Za’al had captured the tube but had never been able to open it.

When Aethon presses his thumb to it the lock disengages.

Inside is a scroll and many small red crystals, not much larger than grains of sand. The scroll is encrypyted and states:

“Menhir”

FLRF LZP RBA AKAT UHIIXSPR WEQ SS APVY MF WWJEIFZMU

Below those words is a
vigenere.gif

The message is directed at Inquisitor Isabella Scythia, Ordo Hereticus and is from one of her Interrogators.

After some time the Squad decodes the message which reads.

“They did not stop Haarlock. One of them is possessed!”

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Assault upon the Decay of Honour Part 1
Session 2

Deathwatch – Assault Upon the Decay of Honour, Session 2, Nov 1, 2013
XP – 400
Enemies Slain – 1 Khorne Bloodletter, 2 Xenos Bat Creatures, 100 Cultists, Za’al the Flayer (For now at any rate), 2 Riddles

After a tumultuous battle on their crippled frigate, the squad scavenges what gear they can from their ship and proceeds to enter the Decay of Honour. Gunnar volunteers to carry Antaeus’ comatose body and Jimmy tags along as to stay behind is certain death. Before leaving the squad recovers several medkits and a power sword that Aethon quickly wields as his primary weapon.

Upon entering the hulk, the squad finds themselves on the bridge of an Imperial transport ship, hopelessly twisted and warped into the guts of the hulk. However that is the least of their concerns. Throughout the bridge the skeletal remains of the bridge crew lay where they were slain, and above them, a skeleton hangs in cruciform position, and by the looks of the remains, the officer was flayed alive.

Written in blood on the walls of the bridge are the words “Viris colratha dath sethicara tesh dasovallian. Solruthis veh za jass.” However, aside from eventually discovering it’s origin to be Nostraman, the squad is unable to decipher its meaning.

With only one exit from the bridge, the squad prepares to advance before hearing the raspy voice of Za’al the Flayer, who has styled himself master of this vessel, and perhaps the hulk itself. Za’al bids the squad welcome to his domain and assures that they will soon all become intimately acquainted…

The squad then enters what looks to be the ship’s doctor’s quarters, and discover a safe and a clock face on the wall. Each object has a monitor and keypad next to it. On the safe is written “Freely given to those that deserve and do not deserve alike, I enrich all and yet am always in short supply.” After a brief search of the quarters, Gunnar determines the answer to be “Mercy” which opens the safe revealing 2 medkits and a medical servo skull.

The clockface is devoid of hands and has an engraving of a set of scales, equally balanced, on it. Aethon Harker briefly sees the images of several greatswords, and utters the words “I ain’t got no time for justice!” The clock opens and inside are two melta charges.

Upon leaving the quarters the squad moves south into a corridor that has been desecrated and contains a foul essence and odor. Inside a shrine to the Emperor has been defiled. Marcus takes his flamer and destroys it, unleashing a Khornate Bloodletter! Reacting swiftly, the squad destroys the monstrosity before it can strike at Marcus. After the battle the squad sees the following words, written in blood on the walls. “Tosha amthilla van veshi laliss.”

Gunnar then enters Antaeus’ mind and helps reinforce it against wayward energies and the foul miasma of the warp. Antaeus is grateful and warns Gunnar that there will be great trials ahead and that his abilities may be the difference between success and failure.

Beyond the corrupted shrine is a hallway filled with prisoners chained to the walls. They are all mutilated, tortured or injured in different ways, with their blood draining into the floor. Gunnar begins to cut their threads and lay them to sleep on the red snow, but Za’al has trapped several of the bodies with explosives. As Gunnar cuts the throat of a prisoner 2 krak grenades and an EMP grenade go off. The krak grenades do minimal damage, but the EMP grenade damages Marcus and Gunnar’s armor, reducing it’s speed.

Za’al taunts them from the shadows and his maniacal laughter causes Icthaylion to curse Za’al’s name.

The squad continues south, and they enter a large room of pitch blackness, but filled with the stench of evil. With their infrared vision they see Za’al sitting on a throne of bone and his true nature is revealed. Za’al is a Night Lords Chaos Space Marine, armed with 2 lightning claws, a jetpack…and The Legacy of Nocture, the thunder hammer the squad originally came to acquire.

As Za’al takes off to attack the squad, two huge xenos bat monsters dive out of the shadows and 100 cultists in 4 huge groups charge forward to engage the noble Deathwatch members. However Aethon is faster than any of them and activates his jump pack, intercepting one of the huge bat creatures. They both exchange vicious blows, but Aethon takes the worst of it when he is poisoned by the beast, but not before his chainsword bites deep into the monstrosity.

Za’al challenges Icthaylion and dives at him with his claws, which Icthaylion dodges by a hair’s breadth. Alban Xanthus fires off several devastating rounds at the bat creature attacking Aethon while Gunnar engages the other beast. Marcus is charged by 25 cultists and while he isn’t injured, the cultists are buying time for their fellows to bring up heavy weapons.

But the Emperor is with the squad this day. Each squad member enters squad mode, choosing to work together rather than as individual elements. Then Marcus hits the override feature on his com link and begins to lead the squad by example. Somewhere in the distance the squad swears they hear the traditional marching music of Macragge play, an Old Earth song called “Ghostbusters.”

Inspired by Marcus “Level 2 Bard” Valen, the squad tears into Za’al and his minions mercilessly. Icthaylion levels his pistol at Za’al and fires two extremely well placed shots, critically injuring Za’al. He escapes from the fight promising revenge and punishment. Alban begins firing at the cultist hordes, causing tremendous carnage and utterly destroying over 75 cultists in the course of seconds. Aethon’s chainsword slices through one of the giant beast’s necks, decapitating it in one continuous and gruesome stroke.

Gunnar and the other xenos beast exchange vicious attacks but neither is able to land a truly telling blow until finally the squad, having disposed of the other threats, come to his aid and together slay the beast. The squad’s first real trial by fire comes to an end and the squad stands triumphant, if not smeared in gore and viscera.

After surveying the carnage and healing as best they can, they discover a small personal cache kept by Za’al. Inside are some additional bolter clips, a medkit, a skull with 4 service studs and an Imperial Fist icon engraved on it and a relic bolter named “The Golden Lion of Terra.” It is a Masterwork Bolter with underslung grenade launcher, meticulously crafted and well maintained it is as deadly as it is priceless.

The squad falls back to an earlier part of the ship and travels through a narrow hallway filled with the statues of various Imperial Saints. Halfway through the tunnel, the entrance collapses and a huge boulder rolls at them, trapping them with no exits. The squad hides in the alcoves with Marcus instructing those who forgot how to jump to “jump better.” The squad escapes with no damage, but their retreat is cut off.

Ahead of them is a huge pool of water, a byproduct of the environmental systems going haywire in the cargo holds. As Aethon approaches a nearby door to further scout ahead, a huge tentacle emerges from the water, ensnaring him and dragging him to his apparent doom…

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Deathwatch
Session 1

Attendees – John, Craig, Charlie
XP Awarded – 200
Foes – 1 Enormous Plaguebearer, 1 Bloodletter, 2 Magnitude 10 Fury Hordes, 4 Furies

After returning to Watch Fortress Erioch, your squad is immediately rearmed and sent out to the Space Hulk Decay of Honour in order to retrieve the Relic Weapon – Legacy of Nocturne. The Omega Vault has provided the coordinates to the Hulk, and your squad is connected to it somehow.

Your Watch Captain, Epistolary Antaeus of the Blood Ravens accompanies you on board the Gladius Class Frigate Argent Crusader. However mere hours into your warp journey the Gellar field protecting you from the warp begins to collapse! Warp entities pour into the ship and Antaeus orders all survivors to the Chapel to make a last stand.

The squad fights heroically, with Icthaylian, a member of the Salamanders Space Marine Chapter, saving several crewmembers. Marcus experiences trouble with his bolter, only to remember he is a world class pistoleer, and begins dropping extremely well placed bolt rounds into his enemies.

Before the squad can reach the safety of the chapel, a large Plaguebearer bursts out of the elevator, engaging Aethon in a ferocious duel. Both cause grievous wounds to the other, before the beast is finally taking down in a burst of gunfire and bladecraft.

In the Chapel, Marcus and Icthaylian lay down expertly placed waves of fire from their flamers, buying time for Antaeus to shield them all with his psychic power. Wave after wave of furies and bloodletters perish either against the Chapel wards or the flames of the Squad. Antaeus is given enough time to cast his spell, and the squad, plus the improbable survival of one of the human crew, Jimmy, is assured. The squad blacks out and awakens back in realspace.

However the cost is high, Antaeus is wounded and enters a coma until he can receive medical attention. Icthaylian returns to the bridge while Marcus dips everyone in repair cement. Icthaylian discovers that the Argent Crusader has not only suffered a catastrophe, but is now part of the Space Hulk, Decay of Honour, with the aft 2/3 of the ship hopelessly merged with the Hulk itself.

The squad salvages what they can from the ship and decide that their next course of action should be to EVA to an airlock on the Hulk and find a functioning Gellar Field before the Hulk reenters the Warp.

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