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The Pity Of Isha

Submitted By: Date: August 27, 2005, 05:43:15 AM Views: 2115

Panthir began to sweat as he sighted another insect and pulled the trigger on his Long Rifle. They were getting closer.  While preparing for his next shot, he glanced down the rocky outcropping behind which he was taking cover to see how his brethren were fairing.  Though they had been firing since they first spotted the Tyranids crossing the dunes several clicks away, the horde pressed on at a terrifying speed.  He noticed a few looks of fear on some of the newer members of this outcast group, He prayed to Isha to let them escape this day alive.

The planet of Avairia had long been thought of as a dead world - with no usable resources and virtually inhospitable.  Panthir and his group, however, were out to change that. They had learned from a Harlequin Troupe that an old warp gate lay buried under the sands somewhere on this planet, and they had been searching for this ancient artifact when they noticed Tyranid spores dropping far off in the distance. From then on, it had been a fight for their life, dodging scouting parties and hunting packs of the ravenous insects.  Now, singling out one of the larger beasts in the moving mass of death, Panthir aimed and released in one swift movement of his body.

Suddenly, Panthir heard screams of agony and when he looked down again, he saw that several of the larger beasts had worked their way behind the rangers and were now brutally slicing them apart.  Forgetting the larger swarm continuing towards him, he sighted one of the massive creatures' chests and released his Rifle, noting that the beast splattered apart an instant later. Hearing more screams and seeing more of his followers being cut down like wheat, he began to weep.  Though he was a brave soul, he was not stupid, and knew that his group was lost.  Still, he loaded again, and fired again. In his agony, he missed his mark.  As he prepared to load yet again, he saw a lone Outcast - his son - stand with his sword drawn, and charge forward into the mass of venomous claws and fangs.

Sobbing uncontrollably now, he slumped to the ground - obviously accepting his fate.  Only moments later, the Tyranid Warriors surged up the hill to finish their duty to the hive. Yet just as they reached Panthir, Isha must have taken pity on him. Out of thin air appeared many Eldar with massive warp jump generators on their backs. The surprised insects halted their advance. The Spiders took full advantage of this by releasing a massive volley from their cannons.  Most of the hulking creatures were torn to shreds, and the remainders of the group were soon killed by the charge of the Spiders.  Once completed, the Exarch turned to Panthir and offered his hand.

"This day, Isha has shown her love for you, my brother."  Looking up with tear-soaked eyes, Panthir took the offered assistance and stood up.  Looking out over the dunes he had been defending, he gasped.  All that remained were huge craters in the sand and hundreds of Tyranid bodies littered the terrain.  Hearing a whoosh of air above him, he looked up and saw the saviors that Isha had sent: four Craftworld Phoenixes flying low over the desert.

For the Craftworld Kallenar, that day was a great victory, yet for Panthir, that day was a terrible, terrible loss.

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