Sunday, March 27, 2011

Betor: Tyranids near end game

Cut off from interstellar communication by the shadow in the warp, little had been heard from Betor in months. Probes had reported that Nemesis had settled to harvesting the biomass of the areas it already controlled rather than hunting down the remaining Imperial forces, who were too demoralised or degraded to interfere in the process. This was new behaviour from a Tyranid Hive Fleet and it worried analysts. By beginning the harvesting process early Nemesis made itself less vulnerable to an exterminatus order aimed at denying it the planet's biomass. At every turn Nemesis seemed able to anticipate Imperial tactics and actions. Combined with the Hive Fleets mysterious origin from within Imperial space and repeated attempts by Imperial institutions to conceal information on Nemesis it all added up to a disturbing picture for the Ordos Xenos.

The Inquisition pleaded for help from the Space Wolves. They needed more data on Nemesis and some form of victory against the rampaging alien menace to prevent resistance on Betor from collapsing entirely. The Space Wolf Strike Cruiser exited the warp to find the hive fleet orbiting Betor grown to colossal proportions. The sensible course would have been to turn back but the Wolves' pride forced them to continue. Many nerve racking days were spent threading their way through the tendrils of the hive fleet on minimal power in order to reduce the Strike Cruiser's sensor profile. Finally the cruiser made the edge of the planetary atmosphere and a Thunderhawk was dispatched to the besieged city of Munchefeld.

The bone weary defenders were briefly elated by the arrival of the small Space Wolf task force, believing the Imperium were finally coming to save them. Their joy was short lived – Nemesis reacted to the intruders in its midst with overwhelming force both on the ground and in space. The Strike Cruiser found itself in the centre of a storm of spores and small bioships whilst the ruined streets of Munchefeld became alive with a tide of chitinous horror.

The Strike Cruiser attempted to re-enforce their battle brothers on the ground by launching drop pods, but one of the bays was disabled by an exploding spore. The Wolves were hardened and fearless but nothing could prepare a warrior for what was about to happen. One minute the streets were empty, the next they were a boiling sea of claws and fangs which raced at the marines before they could even ready their weaponry. The drop pods crashed down but it was already too late – a carpet of living flesh seemed to wash over the Space Wolve's position.

In less than an hour all communication had been lost with their forces on the ground. When the last drop pod bay was finally brought back on line they were launched to secure the extraction point rather than the battlefield itself. As soon as the few remaining survivors had been extracted by Thunderhawk the Strike Cruiser broke orbit and drove at full speed for deep space, forced to abandon the gene seed or many fallen warriors

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