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Or'es Shi Cadre

Story: The Gauntlet

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Ximoro'An and the Or'es Shi
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Medusa V: Dispatch
Medusa V: Propoganda- To Arms
Origional Background for O'An
Origional History of the Or'es Shi
House Rules: Mont'yr Shas Kill Team
Article: Personal Websites
Article: Battlesuit Protections
Article: Tactica: Armored Assault
Article: Tactica: Drones
Article: On Chaos and Etherials
Article: Tank Crewman
Battle Report: Cyan Snow
Battle Report: Grand Entrance
Battle Report: Clash of the Titans
Mechanized Air Cavalry Army List
Battle Report: Fury from the Skies
Battle Report: Tank Graveyard
Battle Report: Xenos Armor
Battle Report: Surprise Attack
Battle Report: The Fall
Battle Report: The Green Menace
Battle Report: And They Shall Know No Fear Part 2
Battle Report: And They Shall Know No Fear Part 1
Battle Report: Jungle Run
Battle Report: Training Match-Friendly Competition
Battle Report: First Encounter
Battle Report: Jungle Landing
Battle Report: Last Stand
Battle Report: Bored Bash
Battle Report: Fourth Fort Massacre
Battle Report: Terminator Termination
Battle Report: Royal Slam
Battle Report: Back in Action
Battle Report: Clash of the Veterans
Battle Report: Killing Blow
Battle Report: Securing the Lines
Story: Mont'yr Shas Part 1
Story: Be Careful What You Ask For
Story: A New Day
Story: A Job Well Done
Story: Into the Fire
Story: Last Stand at Fio'rai
Story: The Gauntlet
Story: The Irregulars
Story: Typhoon-Coming of the Storm

Another bit of fluff I did not end up using. But it is not that bad of a story. Have fun reading it.

Drake Haust sat in the corner of the inn swirling the last dregs of his drink in the bottom of his glass. The outer rim was a place where a smuggler like him could sit down and relax. He was in a different segmentum from his normal base of opperations and was an unknown. NO one was after him, the authorities didnt have him on record, no one cared who he was. Life was good.

Sitting back he looked around. Perhaps he should leave the smuggling bussiness. He had saved up enough to set up somewhere and live out his days. But that was unlikely to happen if he stayed in one place. You could never be sure somewhere was safe, what with daemons and aliens and mutants. It was a dangerous time to live in. He sighed. Then again he could start up anew here. He had a few old ships to use, and his personal craft. Still it would be a dangerous undertaking. The outer rim was a much nastier place. Instead of Imperial scrutiny you had to wory about all sorts of aliens and pirats that harrassed ships sporadically.

Drake was still deep in thought when the tiny bell and soft hiss of the opening door allerted him to the entrance of a stranger. Without a thought he glanced into the reflection of his glass to watch the newcomer. The man was big, very big. He was shrouded in a thick trench coat and was obviusly heavily armed. Several bionical implants could be seen already even in the poor visual Drake was using. The stranger walked up to the bar and inquired about something to the bar man. Drakes heart skipped a beat as the bar man pointed in his direction and the stranger came over.

"This seat taken?" The stranger asked, not waiting for an answer before sitting down and looking Drake in the eye.

"I am here to purchase transport." The stranger said. "I can pay whatever you need. The location and cargo to be detailed on departure."

Drake was totally off balance. Never before had such an obtuse commision been offered to him. NO details of any kind, not even a meeting place for the briefing. Clearly this cargo and destination were herretical and illegal in nature or the secrecy wouldent be so high.

"Whats the pay for this mystery job." Drake croaked trying to pull himself together.

The stranger took a credit box from his coat and showed the front to Drake. The number blinking in red was unbelievable. He had never seen so much money for one job. Even the most high stake runs he had made had not been for a quarter of that. Even then he only saw a fraction of the proffit.

He chocked for a moment and starred at the giant of a man. "I... *cough*... accept." He managed to get out.

"Good, you have made a wise decision." The stranger answered pushing a package into his hands. "Do not back down on us or you WILL regret it." He continued in a deep threatening tone.

The stomp of boots and the hiss of the door told Drake the man had left. But he was busy eyeing the package. Decideing he had no choice now and cursing his hasty answer he took the package and headed to his room.

Once inside he began the task of securing the chamber. Sealing the door, setting up anti scrying devices, sealing the room from intrusion of any kind and blocking it from any survailance.

When the task was done he sat on his bead and oppened the package. Inside was a pile of papers detailing his mission. His eyes shot open when he saw the destination and even wider when the cargo registered in his head. Flipping through the packet he found records and data sheets, fake IDs and pass cards, credit slips and Affirmation codes.

The package fell from his grasp as he sat there stunned. Out of the envelope fell a note he had not noticed before. On it was scratched a short set of simple instructions.

Tommorrow, 12:00 hours, 3rd dock Delta E4 hanger

Horrified he realized that was where his ship was docked. They already knew the location of his craft.

"Oh man, by the emperror Im doomed." He muttered to himself falling backwards onto his bed. He lay there for a long time before finally falling into a troubled sleep.
---------------------------

Hours latter he awoke, sitting bolt upright he whipped the sweat from his brow. With cold clammy hands he patted his body to make sure his visions of torture and pain were not true. After several long minutes his pulse returned to normal and he got up. Looking at his time piece he saw that it was currently 6:00 hours. He still had time to prepare.

Gathering up the papers he tucked them into their proper place. Assuring himself that nothing incriminating was not hidden away and that the documents were in their assigned places. He went over each one several times, ensuring that he knew where each one was. When he was done he set about gathering his equippment.

He laid his sword and bolt pistol on the bed and went to go get his cloths. As he oppened his closset he fell back in utter shock. His normal clothing was on the floor, replaced by the uniform and armor of an Imperial Pilot.

Staggering to his feet he looked at the fake ID again. Yes it said he was a leutenant officer commisioned with the transport of certain articles. Shaking off the horror at his surpriseingly powerfull and mysterius employers he dawned the uniform. Belting his pistol and sword he covered himself in a long cloak. Sattisfied that he could leave without suspicion he exited his room taking his few possesions with him.

His first stop was the black market in the nearby hive district. He was admitted with cautius guns pointed at him. He had not been there nearly long enough to be admitted easily.

He went over to the weopons specialist and picked up several items he had bought earlier. Not wanting to stay longer than welcome he turned to the door but stopped as he had a thought. Approaching another of the underground merchants he took a seat and tapped the man before him.

"No need to bother me child, I know your here." The old man said turning his sightless eyes on the smuggler.

A shiver ran through him. Drake never liked dealing with psychers but he really needed information. But before he cuold speak the man spoke again.

"You desire to know who your employers are dont you?" He said cutting Drake off before he could begin.

"Well I um... well yes I do." Drake answered.

"That is dark knowledge, knowledge that could send many men to their deaths at the hands of the grey giants." The old man said aloofly.

"I figured that much." Said Drake now getting slightly angry. Something about psychers disturbed him.

"No need for anger there young one. Patience is a virtue you know." The psycher said with a dismissive wave. "They are lost champions of the Emperor."

Drake stared suspiciusly. "Dont play games with me psycher who are they?"

"I told you." The psycher answered. "I can say no more here."

"Very well, fine." Drake said dropping a handfull of coins into the mystics lap.

"Good day." The old man said with a wave as Drake stomped out of the black market.

Just more questions, no anwers. He thought to himself. Not a good day.
----------------------------------

The time piece read 11:30 hours.

"Do you think hes coming brother captain?" Asked Ryel.

"He has little choice in the matter." Sergeant Tael answered.

It had been a long trip but they had made it. Even better their cargo was safe. But now they had hit a dead end. The Grey Knights were still hot on their tail and their transport had died on them. Stranded they needed a reliable pilot and fast. Figuring that the smugglers would be the most appropriate choice they had hired a man to get them one. Now they could just hope he came.

Drake entered the hanger. He was early but he had nothing else to do. All his arrangements were done. There was nothing else for him here. With a resigned shrug he squared his shoulders and marched down the causway toward the subsector of the hanger where his ship was docked. As he passed a large shuttle his craft came into view. Stopping dead he worked hard to supress a curse of rage. His ship, his beutifull, wonderfull ship was now bearing the sigils of the Imperial Navy and sporting guns where he had welded in hidden compartments and extra engines.

"OH no what have they done now." He said to himself walking up. A guard stopped him short.

"Name and bussiness." The guard said slapping his lasgun in his hand.

Drake didnt reply, he just handed the guard his identification papers.

"Very well move on." The soldier said standing aside.

Drake walked past the guards and up the ramp of his ship. The back bay door slid open enough to admit him and he strode in mouth opening to demand what was going on when a bolter barrel was jammed in his face.

No less than fifteen giant space marines towered over him. All armed, and all quite capable of killing a hundred of him without thought. Hands held up in defeat Drake stepped away from the gun and watched as the marines parted to let one of their number through. The marine stopped and stared down at Drake.

Tael leered at Drake fingering the hilt of his chainsword.

"I am sergeant Tael of the Ulti... of no chapter." The marine said his voice angry and assertive.

"Drake Haust." Drake replied by way of an introduction. "So you want passage through the Damocles Gulf."

"That is correct." Tael replied. "We will brief you en route. However until we are on our way you will ask no questins. Now get us moving."

"Understood." Drake replied stepping past the marines and walking into the cocpit of his ship.

He was very proud of his ship. It was upon observation an Imperial Standard class lander. However it was much more than that. Thanks to a miracle salvage he had recovered the engines of an Eldar craft. With quite allot of research through the black markets he had discovered that the Eldar made use of a system of semi warp roads called collectively the web way. The engines ,carefully hidden in the hull, allowed him to make use of the Eldar roads. So far they had allowed him much faster travel with a much smaller ship.

Out here though he had to be carefull. He had spent allot of money on scaners but still the Dark Eldar were dangerous.

++++Opening Channel++++
++++Channel Secure++++
++++Opening Comms++++
+++This is The Emperors Hate hailing you. You are to alter your course immediately and dock. That is an order. Do not comply and you will be fired on.+++

"By the Emperor thats not good." Drake said turning around he called into the cargo hold. "We have a problem."

"What is it?" Tael asked in a gruff tone.

Drake replayed the message.

"DO not alter your course. You must run the gauntlet." Tael replied.

"IF I dont?" Drake asked.

"You and I are worse than dead." Tael shot back.

"Now that you put it that way." Drake said punching some buttons. Suddenly the ship lurched forward and went rocketing along. Pannels on the side of the ship slid open and engines emmerged roaring to life. The ship shuddered with the intencity of the accelaration.

+++This is your last warning, alter course and dock or be obliterated+++

Angry Drake opened the comm.

+++Go to hell+++

The hail of fire that came at him was stunning to behold. Plasma cannons fired, great bateries of cannons opened up, laser lances blasted forth and hit... nothing. The Mask was gone. It had simply vanished. Then it was there again. Far closer to the Emperors Hate than before. The Mask vanished and appeared several times in quick succesion, dissapearing as the weopons fire passed through the space the shuttle had occupied moments before, and reapearing once the powerfull weopons fire paused.

+++By the Throne what is going on+++ The Emperors Hate radioed angrily.

The Mask appeared again behind the great crusser. Making a fast line to a warp entrance.

+++Its been nice playing with you, but I have to go, bye+++ Drake radioed just before the Mask slipped into the webway right at the Warp entrance.

+++Impossible+++ The Emperors Hate messaged as its bateries halted.

On the bridge of the Emperors Hate, Lord Inquisitor Rath sat musing angrily. How was that possible, what sorceries had those mutant marrines used to avoid his fire? He could not find answers.

"My Lord, what are your orders?" Captain Udred of the Grey Knights 7th company asked.

"Follow them."
---------------------------------

Meanwhile the Mask was making good headway along the twisting maze of the webway. Thanks to the powerfull scanners of his ship he was on the right path. They would emmerge in Tau space in less than 24 hours. He supposed an Eldar craft might go faster but his mastery of the engines was minimal at best. For the meantime they were safe and on course.

 

The Mask coasted along through the webway with ease. The strange alien machines carrying the small craft at a good speed. Not for the first time Drake marveled at the Eldars genius craftsmanship. How anyone could acomplish such a feat elluded him.

In the back of the ship the Space Marines knelt in prayer. A silver adamantium canister sat in the middle of the group. It was full of metal vials of some sort though he had no idea what they could be. All he knew was that whenever he asked a marine about it he recieved glares and clenched fists. Reluctantly he had ceased his questions.

The uniform was uncomphortable as Drake sat in the pilots chair. He was used to his comphortable coat. So it was that he was not paying as close attention to the sensors as he should have.

Suddenly the shuttle rocked violently and the lights blinked off to be replaced by the red immergency lights.

"OH shit." Drake cursed loudly pulling himself up straight in his chair and sweeping his gaze over the sensors. A dozen Dark Eldar strike craft had come from nowhere and were bearing down on him.

"Thank the Emperor." he whispered gratefull for his ships shields and the absence of any large Eldar ships.

"What was that?" Tael growled at him.

"Were under attack, strap yourselves in this is going to be bumpy." Drake replied taking his own advice. With a snort the space marine sat down in the passenger seats and strapped in, his comrades doing likewise. The chairs were abit small but worked nonetheless.

The Mask spun wildly as Drake tried desperately to lose the Dark Eldar. He was lost as to where they could have come from, no large craft were anywhere nearby. He was still staring at his sensors in confusion when his ship was jolted again. He looked up in frustration. Nothing had hit him. Then he realized he was no longer in the webway. He had been thrown out through a tear. All around him a heated battle raged as Eldar and Dark Eldar craft sped around in breathtaking dogfights and an innumerable number of projectiles rocketed through the void of space.

With reflexes born of desperation he yanked his craft around in a jerky motion spinning it around the battling ships. "I hate running gauntlets." He protested to himself.

A large Eldar warship loomed into view. He saw one of its starboard turrets turning towards him. He could see the shot being fired in slow motion, the absolute certainty of his death hit him like a hammer freezing him up. Then there was a massive exlosion infront of him. He watched wide eyed as the lance of energy slammed into a Dark Eldar fighter as it sped past. Reeling from his luck he slammed his foot down sending the shuttle speeding out past the raging battle and into open space. He was relieved when none of the battling craft bothered to follow him.

Relief flooded him as The Mask slid back into the webway and exited the range of pursuit.
-------------------------------------

The planet below him was stunning. He imagined that was how Terra must have looked once, long, long ago.

"Hey, sergeant, take a look at this." Drake called back into the hold. Tael loomed in the doorway seconds latter peering out the vidscreen.

"We have arrived then?" He asked rhetorically.

"Ofcourse." Blake replied with a grin. "You doughted me?"

Shaking his head the burly marine turned around and walked back to his squad.

"Take us down outside one of the cities. We will aproach on foot."

"Yes sir." He answered with a mokeing salute.

Drakes bravado died as he noticed something on the edge of his view. Turning he saw a large Imperial battle barge coming towards them. The red light on the transmitter blinked showing that he was being hailed.

"Um that cant be good." He said opening the comms channel.

+++So we meet again.+++

It was the grey knights again. Somehow they had gotten there first.

"Damn, how fast can this thing go?" Ryel raged his voice echoeing into the cabin through the open doorway.

+++You are lucky heretic. We are giveing you the chance to give up without a fight. Few recieve this offer twice.+++

Rolling his eyes Drake just ignored the comm and turned his attention to the planet.

+++What was my responce last time.+++ He shot back before zooming off speeding as fast as he could go and still pushing faster.

+++Very well.+++

Weopons fire blasted all around The Mask as the Emperors Hate let loose everything she had. By the grace of the Emperor the Mask almost made it. But Drake was not to be that lucky today. A starlight lance glanced the port engine sending a stream of icy chemicals and shards of metal into space. With a groan he realized that would probably be enough.

The Mask careened out of control as it hit the stratasphere. Rocked by intence heat and spiralling beyond control the shuttle rocketed towards the earth.

Drake Haust simply sat in his seat, eyes closed, waiting for it to end. Then an idea came to him. Desperately he punched the ignition for the reverse boosters. Then with the stall in the shuttles acceleration he activated the ships Eldar engines.

The world vanished as the ship entered the webway, slowing down to a manageable speed drake watched as he neared the entrance to the planets surface. Relluctantly he knew he couldent turn the ship around and had only this one chance. The Mask tore through the gate into an extremely low altitude.

He could see a sprawling city pass beneath him as he sped into the hills on its other side. He saw the line of trees riseing to meet him and closed his eyes.
-----------------------

The marines pulled themselves from the ruined ship grumbling. Thanks to a last minute move by Drake they had survived the impact but still the ship was damaged beyond repair. Tael felt a twinge at the loss of such a usefull vehicle.

A crash turned Taels head and he saw one of his marines dragging Drake from the cocpit. The man was unconcious with a gash on his head but otherwise unhurt.

Drake awoke to see a marine tending to his head. He felt the ice cold synthi flesh being sprayed on his head. With a groan he sat up looking around. They were in a clearing made by the crashing shuttle. Pieces of his precious ship lay scattered about. On both sides ran a clear blue stream. He saw Tael coming over to him and tried to dust himself off.

"We have made it intact it would seem." Tael said stating the obvious.

"Intact!" Drake scoffed. "Look at my ship."

"A lamentable loss but..." Tael trailed off as the sounds of gunfire filled the clearing. He watched as one of his marines was ridled with thousands of tiny splinters of metal.

A roar of rage escaped the marine sergeant and he ran off to rally his men. Drake stood up on shaky legs drawing his pistol he scampered after the marine decideing that wherever he was would be the safest place.

The marines formed a ring shoulder to shoulder. In the middle stood a single marine with a rocket launcher and Drake. All around them flitted the barbed forms of Dark Eldar raiders. The fight was a desperate one at best. Bolter fire chattered and blasted around sending turf and folliage flying into the air as the shells ripped into the surrounding forrest. One by one the marines were being picked off.

He watched as Ryel fell over clutching his stomach as blood drenched his torso. Falling to his knees the marine turned to face Drake. Reaching out his left hand the dying man thrust the adamantium canister into the smugglers hand.

"Pro...protect th... the geneseed." Ryel managed to cough before falling still, never to rise again.

Drake held up the case horrified. GENESEED! So thats why the marines were protecting it so much. There was enough genetic material in the case to create an entire chapter of marines. To bad they probably wouldent leave the clearing alive.

Now there were but 10 marines. Roaring with rage they defiantly blasted away. THe rockets and bolters were finally catching the Eldar as their cover was simply blasted away. Still they were outnumbered at least two to one and the raiders werent falling fast enough. He felt clumbsy next to the marines as he fired his bolt pistol at anything that moved. If he was to die he would do it fighting and with his wounds to the fore.

A roaring engine turned every head in the clearing. From the other side of the glade a line of shiny blue armored alien warriors appeared. Floating over their heads an odd Tank skimmed above the trees a massive gun leveled at the other tree line. Alongside it hovered four giant mechanical warriors.

Wide eyed the marines dived out of the way as an unspeakable fury of firepower was unleashed. When it was over there was no movement from the raiders position. Out of the forrest jumped a group of smaller armored suits. They kicked the smoking corpses making sure they were dead. When finished their apparent leader raised his gun in triumph.

A shadow fell over Drake. He looked up to see the massive form of one of the mechanical warriors. This one was all silver instead of the blue on the rest of the aliens.

Fanning out the army surrounded the surviveing marines who had reformed their circle.

Drake however still lay behind the piece of wreckage he had dived infront of for cover. He was enthralled as he watched the silver machine open up revealing a seated warrior within. A hiss sounded as a series of straps and needles withdrew and the warrior stood. Dropping to the ground the silver armored alien walked over to Drake.

"Who are you Human?" It asked in perfect high gothic.

"Dra...Drake Haust." The smuggler managed coughing to clear his throat.

"And who are YOU xeno?" Said sergeant Tael taking a step forward. The strange silver warrior shifted his stance showing he was not unarmed. A long elegant combat knife could be seen on his back and a smaller weopon than the rest of the infantry showed strapped to is back. Nevertheless the weopons were obviously deadly.

"My name is Shas'O Ximoro'An of the Or'es Shi cadre." The silver warrior answered his gaze staring into that of the massive space marine.

"So you lead them?" Tael said nodding at the warriors surrounding his men.

"Indeed I do and I would have you tell me what you are doing here Humans." O'AN shot back his patience thin.

"What does it have to do with you alien?" Tael said with a scowl.

"A large number of... Space Marines has been attacking this planet for a week now. My order saved your lives and I would know whether the decision was a good one." O'An replied his voice tinted with anger. The conversation looked more like a battle of wills than anything.

"I am Sergeant Tael of a murdered chapter. We are hounded by our own kind and seek refuge." Tael answered his voice lowering to a calm resignation.

Ximoro'AN reeled back in surprise. This was a strange group of Gue'la indeed. "You wish to defect then?" He asked.

"That is correct." Tael said with a nod.

"Very well." O'An said with a wave. He strode back to his suite and re-entered it. "Follow me."
----------------------------------

It had been several days since the traitor humans had arrived. Ximoro'An had been charged with watching them. He had learned that they sought to rebuild their chapter with the geneseed contained in the canister the normal human carried. Their goal was honest enough but he had noticed grey armored marines joining the fight. It seemed as though the defectees would not escape so easily.

Drake Haust stood on the balcony overlooking the city block below. His leg felt much better. Already he and the traitor marines had fought beside the Tau in several battles. The war that raged was only begining though. He could see the fighting raging in the outer city districts and on the hills surrounding the city. With a sigh he thought about the turn of events in his life. He could no longer return to the Imperium, but he may just die here anyway.

Still, now he had a purpose, a goal in life. He served the greater good. Even if that seemed odd and stupid for a selfish smuggler, he was content for the first time in his life. Truly content. Yes he would serve the greater good. He would help the marines rebuild their chapter, and someday he might return to the Imperium with them. Carrying the word of the greater good to the Imperium of Man. One day, he just might do that.

The End... or is it?

"Bow to the cows."