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Eldar vs Space Marines III

Submitted By: Date: August 24, 2004, 11:38:15 PM Views: 719

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<P class=MsoBodyText style="MARGIN-LEFT: 10px; MARGIN-RIGHT: 10px" align=justify><FONT face=Verdana size=2><SPAN lang=EN-AU>Nola-ka surveyed the landscape before him and sighed.</SPAN></FONT></P>
<P class=MsoBodyText style="MARGIN-LEFT: 10px; MARGIN-RIGHT: 10px" align=justify><FONT face=Verdana size=2><SPAN lang=EN-AU>“This was no way to fight a campaign.” He muttered.</SPAN></FONT></P>
<P class=MsoBodyText style="MARGIN-LEFT: 10px; MARGIN-RIGHT: 10px" align=justify><FONT face=Verdana size=2><SPAN lang=EN-AU>Kazatun looked at him quizzically.</SPAN></FONT></P>
<P class=MsoBodyText style="MARGIN-LEFT: 10px; MARGIN-RIGHT: 10px" align=justify><FONT face=Verdana size=2><SPAN lang=EN-AU>“Look at this mob” Nola-ka exclaimed in explanation. “No Farseer, no Warlock and pathetically small squads.”</SPAN></FONT></P>
<P class=MsoBodyText style="MARGIN-LEFT: 10px; MARGIN-RIGHT: 10px" align=justify><FONT face=Verdana size=2><SPAN lang=EN-AU>“It’s just a patrol,” Kazatun replied sullenly.</SPAN></FONT></P>
<P class=MsoBodyText style="MARGIN-LEFT: 10px; MARGIN-RIGHT: 10px" align=justify><FONT face=Verdana size=2><SPAN lang=EN-AU>Nola-ka grunted and returned to his musings. He hitched his Reaper Launcher and considered the assembled force. No Farseer, no Warlock, just two small Defender squads, three Scorpions period and his squad of Reapers. Somewhere behind he knew that a squad of Dire Avengers were coming up and further back was the main Biel-Tan force, consolidating and rethinking strategy to deal with the new situation.</SPAN></FONT></P>
<P class=MsoBodyText style="MARGIN-LEFT: 10px; MARGIN-RIGHT: 10px" align=justify><FONT face=Verdana size=2><SPAN lang=EN-AU>Nola-ka had never had any reason not to trust the ability of the Farseers to foresee what was to come. It had won many battles he had fought in and saved his life more than once. But somehow the vagrancies of the warp had withheld vision of the arrival of the Space Marines on this occasion.</SPAN></FONT></P>
<P class=MsoBodyText style="MARGIN-LEFT: 10px; MARGIN-RIGHT: 10px" align=justify><FONT face=Verdana size=2><SPAN lang=EN-AU>Still, he missed the guidance of the Farseer. As he tried to pierce the distance ahead with intense gazing he would have appreciated the small voice within telling him what was to come.</SPAN></FONT></P>
<P class=MsoBodyText style="MARGIN-LEFT: 10px; MARGIN-RIGHT: 10px" align=justify><FONT face=Verdana size=2><SPAN lang=EN-AU>Ahead and to the left lay the ruins of the Exodite village. Shattered walls stood in mute testimony to the arrival of the mon-keighs declaring that this planet was rightfully theirs for colonization because their dead Emperor declared it to be so. Despite a much more basic technology the Exodites had made human occupation difficult and costly. Nor had they needed to stand alone for long, Farseer Ashudynn having foreseen the invasion. The Farseer council and Court of the Young King had both agreed that intervention was imperative and dispatched a fleet which quickly routed the alien force. However the unexpected arrival of the much tougher Space Marines had shifted the balance of the conflict once more</SPAN>.<SPAN lang=EN-AU> </SPAN></FONT></P>
<P class=MsoBodyText style="MARGIN-LEFT: 10px; MARGIN-RIGHT: 10px" align=justify><FONT face=Verdana size=2><SPAN lang=EN-AU>Straight ahead lay some sort of road. The ruins of two buildings stood on each side. These had been the largest buildings in the settlement. A succession of rock walls had been constructed across the centre section of the road to impede progress, a hasty early attempt at resistance by the Exodites. Narrow passage lay on either side of these barriers. Nola-ka smiled grimly. The first wall would make an ideal position for his squad. He mused briefly concerning the nature of the small mound that lay sightly closer and to the right but decided it was of little concern.</SPAN></FONT></P>
<P class=MsoBodyText style="MARGIN-LEFT: 10px; MARGIN-RIGHT: 10px" align=justify><FONT face=Verdana size=2><SPAN lang=EN-AU>Tora, the Scorpion Exarch strode across to confer. Their mission was to patrol the area for human forces and destroy them. This settlement marked the bounds of their patrol. The Guardian Defence Squad would take the weapons platform and mount it in the crater to the right where they could survey the wooed hills. He would take his depleted squad and the Guardian Storm Squad to inspect the ruins. Nola-ka would hold the road. Hopefully that’s all they would need to do.</SPAN></FONT></P>
<P class=MsoBodyText style="MARGIN-LEFT: 10px; MARGIN-RIGHT: 10px" align=justify><FONT face=Verdana size=2><SPAN lang=EN-AU>Nola-ka nodded and led his squad into position. They had barely set up when it became obvious that this was not going to be a quiet monitoring mission.</SPAN></FONT></P>
<P class=MsoBodyText style="MARGIN-LEFT: 10px; MARGIN-RIGHT: 10px" align=justify><FONT face=Verdana size=2><SPAN lang=EN-AU>It began, as it always seems to, with the silence suddenly being rent by the sound of gunfire, human projectile small arms with retaliatory shuriken fire joining in. Mixed in the background was a sound that Nola-ka knew too well; jump packs. Looking over he could see a group of red space marines descending towards the Defender squad hidden from view on the other side of the mound, pistols blazing.</SPAN></FONT></P>
<P class=MsoBodyText style="MARGIN-LEFT: 10px; MARGIN-RIGHT: 10px" align=justify><FONT face=Verdana size=2><SPAN lang=EN-AU>He did not get a chance to contemplate this or what his response should be as several grenades fell amongst them and exploded. Nola-ka felt his armour stiffen momentarily to protect him from the blast as he was thrown to the ground. Three screaming figures clad in black armour erupted over the stone barrier waving chainswords and firing their pistols. Nola-ka swung up his Reaper launcher to parry a descending sword stroke. He kicked out viciously but with little effect against the marine’s armour. Duatha threw himself against the marine to force him away from Nola-ka. With an insane cry the marine lifted his pistol and shot Duatha in the face, the explosive shell disintegrating the newly inducted Dark Reaper’s head</SPAN>.<SPAN lang=EN-AU> </SPAN></FONT></P>
<P class=MsoBodyText style="MARGIN-LEFT: 10px; MARGIN-RIGHT: 10px" align=justify><FONT face=Verdana size=2><SPAN lang=EN-AU>Nola-ka had powered his reaper launcher and swung it towards the marine. The sighting link in his helmet was filled with the vision of the emblem on the marine’s chest. Without hesitation Nola-ka fired at point blank range, blowing his attacker across the wall.</SPAN></FONT></P>
<P class=MsoBodyText style="MARGIN-LEFT: 10px; MARGIN-RIGHT: 10px" align=justify><FONT face=Verdana size=2><SPAN lang=EN-AU>Struggling to his feet Nola-ka saw that there were two more marines fighting Kazatun and another member of his squad. With sadness he noted that the fifth member of his squad lay dead upon the ground, a large gash across his chest testimony to a sword’s passage.</SPAN></FONT></P>
<P class=MsoBodyText style="MARGIN-LEFT: 10px; MARGIN-RIGHT: 10px" align=justify><FONT face=Verdana size=2><SPAN lang=EN-AU>The melee was too confused to risk firing. Nola-ka prepared to enter the fray.</SPAN></FONT></P>
<P class=MsoBodyText style="MARGIN-LEFT: 10px; MARGIN-RIGHT: 10px" align=justify><FONT face=Verdana size=2><SPAN lang=EN-AU>“I hate close combat,” he muttered. “That’s why I’m a Dark Reaper.”</SPAN></FONT></P>
<P class=MsoBodyText style="MARGIN-LEFT: 10px; MARGIN-RIGHT: 10px" align=justify><FONT face=Verdana size=2><SPAN lang=EN-AU>Just then the Sticking Scorpion exarch danced across the wall followed by his two fellow scorpions. One of the marines broke apart from the fight with the reapers to meet this knew challenge, firing his pistol and swinging his sword almost simultaneously. Tora avoided these clumsy attacks with graceful ease and swung his treasured claw. Nola-ka knew this weapon was ancient and had been cherished and passed down within the Scorpion aspect on Biel-tan for millennia. Now he could see why as it passed through the marine’s parrying sword and armour as if through mist. The marine fell lifeless at the exarch’s feet.</SPAN></FONT></P>
<P class=MsoBodyText style="MARGIN-LEFT: 10px; MARGIN-RIGHT: 10px" align=justify><FONT face=Verdana size=2><SPAN lang=EN-AU>The loss of all his companions may have given another warrior reason to pause but the remaining marine just seemed to be further enraged. Tora accepted this new dance partner and soon he had joined the rest of his squad in death</SPAN>.<SPAN lang=EN-AU> </SPAN></FONT></P>
<P class=MsoBodyText style="MARGIN-LEFT: 10px; MARGIN-RIGHT: 10px" align=justify><FONT face=Verdana size=2><SPAN lang=EN-AU>“Any more?” Kazatun gasped as they paused to gather breath.</SPAN></FONT></P>
<P class=MsoBodyText style="MARGIN-LEFT: 10px; MARGIN-RIGHT: 10px" align=justify><FONT face=Verdana size=2><SPAN lang=EN-AU>“Not of these” Tora replied calmly, seemingly unaffected by his exertions. “They’re mad, they don’t stop coming. If there were more we would know of them. The firing has stopped beyond the mound. I do not like that.”</SPAN></FONT></P>
<P class=MsoBodyText style="MARGIN-LEFT: 10px; MARGIN-RIGHT: 10px" align=justify><FONT face=Verdana size=2><SPAN lang=EN-AU>Just then the scream of jump packs filled the air and the marine assault squad appeared above them, jumping the mound.</SPAN></FONT></P>
<P class=MsoBodyText style="MARGIN-LEFT: 10px; MARGIN-RIGHT: 10px" align=justify><FONT face=Verdana size=2><SPAN lang=EN-AU>“Back” yelled Tora as he and his two fellow scorpions leapt the meet the attackers.</SPAN></FONT></P>
<P class=MsoBodyText style="MARGIN-LEFT: 10px; MARGIN-RIGHT: 10px" align=justify><FONT face=Verdana size=2><SPAN lang=EN-AU>“Be my guest,” replied Nola-ka as he staggered back to make way for the Scorpions. “I really hate close combat.”</SPAN></FONT></P>
<P class=MsoBodyText style="MARGIN-LEFT: 10px; MARGIN-RIGHT: 10px" align=justify><FONT face=Verdana size=2><SPAN lang=EN-AU>Five marines descended towards them, firing as they came down. The Scorpions readied themselves to meet this new threat but the Reapers had their attention snatched by a new threat as the top of the wall was shattered in a hail of gunfire.</SPAN></FONT></P>
<P class=MsoBodyText style="MARGIN-LEFT: 10px; MARGIN-RIGHT: 10px" align=justify><FONT face=Verdana size=2><SPAN lang=EN-AU>Spinning around they were confronted by the sight of a marine attack bike bearing down on them along the road. The guns on the front of the bike and the sidecar both blazing.</SPAN></FONT></P>
<P class=MsoBodyText style="MARGIN-LEFT: 10px; MARGIN-RIGHT: 10px" align=justify><FONT face=Verdana size=2><SPAN lang=EN-AU>“For a vehicle with wheels it’s getting around those hazards well enough” Nola-ka thought grimly as he and his companions aimed and fired their weapons in return. Sadly, aiming and firing in haste whilst under fire with a hand to hand combat taking place beside you does not contribute towards good marksmanship and only one shot hit, and that not effectively.</SPAN></FONT></P>
<P class=MsoBodyText style="MARGIN-LEFT: 10px; MARGIN-RIGHT: 10px" align=justify><FONT face=Verdana size=2><SPAN lang=EN-AU>Another explosion rocked them as a missile roared over the bike and smashed explosively into the wall. The three Reapers took cover as rock showered around them. </SPAN></FONT></P>
<P class=MsoBodyText style="MARGIN-LEFT: 10px; MARGIN-RIGHT: 10px" align=justify><FONT face=Verdana size=2><SPAN lang=EN-AU>“Don’t these mon-keigh care about their own people?” Kazatun exclaimed.</SPAN></FONT></P>
<P class=MsoBodyText style="MARGIN-LEFT: 10px; MARGIN-RIGHT: 10px" align=justify><FONT face=Verdana size=2><SPAN lang=EN-AU>Glancing over Nola-ka noted with some distress that the fight between marines and Scorpions was not going well. Whilst two of the marines lay amongst the mounting number of dead, only the exarch survived, bravely battling the three remaining marines. Even as the Reapers watched in horrified and distracted fascination Tora dodged another blow and buried his claw upwards into the belly of one of the marines but was therefore unable to deflect a descending sword that brought his brief but honourable involvement in this conflict to a sudden and bloody end. The two marines paused for a moment, almost as if calculating their ability to continue the assault. It was soon obvious that they did think themselves capable as they charged on the three Reapers with screams of rage that seemed to border of the madness shown by their black comrades.</SPAN></FONT></P>
<P class=MsoBodyText style="MARGIN-LEFT: 10px; MARGIN-RIGHT: 10px" align=justify><FONT face=Verdana size=2><SPAN lang=EN-AU>The Reapers acted in unison, preparing to counter the assault. Nola-ka’s arms ached with tiredness as he again swung his weapon in defence and offence. Out of the corner of his eye he saw Kazatun cut down. Briefly, and to his shame, he considered flight but resolved to stand, as did his remaining battle brother. The marines backed away for a moment, as if they too, were tiring from this protracted and bloody encounter.</SPAN></FONT></P>
<P class=MsoBodyText style="MARGIN-LEFT: 10px; MARGIN-RIGHT: 10px" align=justify><FONT face=Verdana size=2><SPAN lang=EN-AU>“Time to die” thought Nola-ka, wondering just who was going to die.</SPAN></FONT></P>
<P class=MsoBodyText style="MARGIN-LEFT: 10px; MARGIN-RIGHT: 10px" align=justify><FONT face=Verdana size=2><SPAN lang=EN-AU>Suddenly one of the marines was cut in half by a blaze of shuriken shot. Nola-ka realized that in the last encounter the marines had moved out from behind the mound and this one had exposed him to the plain over which the Eldar had arrived just a short time before. In the distance he could see a weapons platform with one operator. With horror Nola-ka realized that this shuriken cannon was all that remained of the Guardian Defence Squad these marines had assaulted earlier. This remaining operator had obviously fled but now recovered enough to rejoin the battle. The remaining marine launched into the air, fleeing into the distance.</SPAN></FONT></P>
<P class=MsoBodyText style="MARGIN-LEFT: 10px; MARGIN-RIGHT: 10px" align=justify><FONT face=Verdana size=2><SPAN lang=EN-AU>More shuriken fire caught Nola-ka’s attention as the Guardian Storm Squad emerged from the ruins firing their pistols down the road towards the bike. Moments later the bike came into view but sped past the squad onto the plain.</SPAN></FONT></P>
<P class=MsoBodyText style="MARGIN-LEFT: 10px; MARGIN-RIGHT: 10px" align=justify><FONT face=Verdana size=2><SPAN lang=EN-AU>“The bike” groaned Nola-ka as he prepared to fight once more. But before he could act further another missile slammed into the wall. Nola-ka was thrown to the ground. As he rose he realised that the other remaining Reaper was now dead.</SPAN></FONT></P>
<P class=MsoBodyText style="MARGIN-LEFT: 10px; MARGIN-RIGHT: 10px" align=justify><FONT face=Verdana size=2><SPAN lang=EN-AU>“This position is hopeless,” he decided. “I’ll join the platform.”</SPAN></FONT></P>
<P class=MsoBodyText style="MARGIN-LEFT: 10px; MARGIN-RIGHT: 10px" align=justify><FONT face=Verdana size=2><SPAN lang=EN-AU>But as he retreated towards the approaching platform he realized that this was also the bike’s target as it advanced with a barrage of withering fire erupting from its weapons. The sole Guardian had had no time to defend himself and his batted corpse was flung backwards across the plain.</SPAN></FONT></P>
<P class=MsoBodyText style="MARGIN-LEFT: 10px; MARGIN-RIGHT: 10px" align=justify><FONT face=Verdana size=2><SPAN lang=EN-AU>The bike then spun in a very short space and rush back into conflict with the Storm Squad. It seems devastatingly unstoppable and two members of the small squad were cut down as they surrounded the bike in an attempt to get hold of the vehicle’s crew.</SPAN></FONT></P>
<P class=MsoBodyText style="MARGIN-LEFT: 10px; MARGIN-RIGHT: 10px" align=justify><FONT face=Verdana size=2><SPAN lang=EN-AU>Nola-ka realized he could not abandon the fight. He tried for a two shots during a moment when Storm Guardians did not obscure his view but both failed. The Guardians continued their onslaught but with little effect as the bike wheeled around amongst them and its crew shot and battled at them with handguns, seemingly willing the trust movement, bike and personal armour against the Eldar attacks. So far their trust seemed well founded.</SPAN></FONT></P>
<P class=MsoBodyText style="MARGIN-LEFT: 10px; MARGIN-RIGHT: 10px" align=justify><FONT face=Verdana size=2><SPAN lang=EN-AU>Another missile exploded harmlessly upon the plain as the struggle between bike and storm squad continued. Another squad member was shot dead in the melee. Nola-ka rushed forward, not pausing to try for distance shots anymore. Whilst he had always preferred the purity of distance and aim he realized this conflict was only going to be solved in close.</SPAN></FONT></P>
<P class=MsoBodyText style="MARGIN-LEFT: 10px; MARGIN-RIGHT: 10px" align=justify><FONT face=Verdana size=2><SPAN lang=EN-AU>Both Guardians were on the opposite side of the bike to Nola-ka and both the rider and sidecar gunner had their attention focused upon battling the two Guardians. Neither noted his approach. The bike itself had come to a stop. </SPAN></FONT></P>
<P class=MsoBodyText style="MARGIN-LEFT: 10px; MARGIN-RIGHT: 10px" align=justify><FONT face=Verdana size=2><SPAN lang=EN-AU>As he stepped up, Nola-ka noted that the rider had lost his helmet somewhere. Best to send its owner’s head in search of it. He rested the end on his Reaper Launcher on the marine’s shoulder. The marine jerked in surprise and looked around into the face of his doom, an expression of almost comic shock horror written across his features as he realised that his time was up. Grimly Nola-ka fired, the missile killing both rider and passenger.</SPAN></FONT></P>
<P class=MsoBodyText style="MARGIN-LEFT: 10px; MARGIN-RIGHT: 10px" align=justify><FONT face=Verdana size=2><SPAN lang=EN-AU>The three survivors stood beside the bike.</SPAN></FONT></P>
<P class=MsoBodyText style="MARGIN-LEFT: 10px; MARGIN-RIGHT: 10px" align=justify><FONT face=Verdana size=2><SPAN lang=EN-AU>“The Dire Avengers are coming” one of the Guardians noted.</SPAN></FONT></P>
<P class=MsoBodyText style="MARGIN-LEFT: 10px; MARGIN-RIGHT: 10px" align=justify><FONT face=Verdana size=2><SPAN lang=EN-AU>“About time,” Nola-ka muttered, glancing over towards the distant squad of blue clad figures.</SPAN></FONT></P>
<P class=MsoBodyText style="MARGIN-LEFT: 10px; MARGIN-RIGHT: 10px" align=justify><FONT face=Verdana size=2><SPAN lang=EN-AU>For the third time he was flung to the ground by an explosion. That damned missile launcher was still out there and getting closer. As he clambered to his feet and picked up his launcher he noted with regret that both Guardians had been killed. There position beside the bike had exposed them too clearly along the narrow field of clear path left along the road. In the distance he could see the approaching marine squad.</SPAN></FONT></P>
<P class=MsoBodyText style="MARGIN-LEFT: 10px; MARGIN-RIGHT: 10px" align=justify><FONT face=Verdana size=2><SPAN lang=EN-AU>Suddenly the bike and ground around him was peppered with enemy fire. Cursing Nola-ka realized that another squad had taken position in the ruins to his right. Lighter armour he noted as he took cover behind the bike, a squad of their scouts.</SPAN></FONT></P>
<P class=MsoBodyText style="MARGIN-LEFT: 10px; MARGIN-RIGHT: 10px" align=justify><FONT face=Verdana size=2><SPAN lang=EN-AU>The chatter of shuriken catapults heralded the arrival of the Dire Avenger Squad who, in a display of good marksmanship or good luck, Nola-ka couldn’t decide which, dropped bother marines firing from the windows. Two more took their place and one of the Avengers fell to their fire. Another missile screamed overhead. Woefully off target though the approaching squad were now also firing their weapons. Nola-ka noted that the final Assault marine was returning with them.</SPAN></FONT></P>
<P class=MsoBodyText style="MARGIN-LEFT: 10px; MARGIN-RIGHT: 10px" align=justify><FONT face=Verdana size=2><SPAN lang=EN-AU>A third scout marine had fallen to the shuriken fire of the Dire Avengers and the rest seemed to have withdrawn. Nola-ka took up his position at the wall once more, this time with Dire Avenger Aspect warriors beside him. He was the last Eldar standing of his squad, indeed of his original patrol but finally the fight was drawing up forming into a pattern that suited his skills. The marines were advancing and firing though their weapons had little effect against the cover. Around him the Avengers returned fire and Nola-ka was grimly pleased to see a marine fall. His sighting link though, was focused on his target. The remaining assault marine. Grimly he took aim and fired. His skill and experience was unerring and the last member of this squad that had caused so much devastation ceased to be. A second shot took out another member of the approaching squad. The marines paused to take more time shooting but only inflicted one casualty against the Avengers. Their return fire killed another marine and the remaining three hastily withdrew.</SPAN></FONT></P>
<P class=MsoBodyText style="MARGIN-LEFT: 10px; MARGIN-RIGHT: 10px" align=justify><FONT face=Verdana size=2><SPAN lang=EN-AU>Nola-ka paused to offer quiet thanks for his life and for this brief respite. The battle would continue but the main Biel-Tan force was very close. Many had suffered and died but they had held the ground though the cost had been too high.</SPAN></FONT></P>
<P class=MsoBodyText style="MARGIN-LEFT: 10px; MARGIN-RIGHT: 10px" align=justify><FONT face=Verdana size=2><SPAN lang=EN-AU>He looked around sadly at his many fallen comrades and was aware that beyond the mound were the corpses of the defender squad. Soon a Farseer would arrive and their spirit stones could be gathered. For now, he rested, mourned and waited.</SPAN></FONT></P>
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