06.010M42 finally saw a meaningful counter-attack on Bastien. Following Lorek’s victory over the Anticross he was able to wield his authority over Bastien’s forces, and an organised counter attack soon followed. The Claws attacked in the north, where they had recently lost ground to the Porphyrians and Groznians. The latter had been withdrawn and the front line had been weakened. When the attack came Lorek unleashed his daemons once more and the Dark Angels rapidly moved to block them.
The Marines however suffered badly for once in their encounter with the daemonic legions of Lorek. Taking heavy casualties they withdrew, allowing the Claws to move rapidly along the coast of the boiling sea, outflanking the Damnation defence line and leaving the Porphyrian Guard dangerously exposed.
The Porphyrians, veterans in fighting chaos and daemonic armies could have been expected to hold firm and stop the counter attack, but their commanders knew they were about to be demobilised for refit and many saw no reason to waste Porphyrian lives needlessly. Much to the irritation of General Veers the Porphyrians withdrew to the Imperial base to the north of Imperius and left the crusade. The Claws of Lorek were stopped at the gates of the city, but much of the strategic depth of Veers’ northern defence had been lost.