Tuesday, September 25, 2012

Nemesis consume Rhesius

The tyranid invasion of Rhesius went down in sector history as something of an imperial fiasco. By late 09.012M42 it was obvious to everyone in imperial intelligence that Nemesis was steadily progressing through the Rim worlds consuming all in its path. Despite evidence to the contrary however, General Alexander was determined to underestimate Nemesis and believe the Xenos threat was now bogged down in a lengthy battle against chaos on New Sparta.

Nothing could be further from the truth. Nemesis had indeed left forces on New Sparta - enough it believe to finish its consumption, but the rest of the hive fleet had moved on. Thanks to a cantankerous relationship between General Alexander and his admiral of the fleet, the imperial battlegroup had made little provision for an attack by Nemesis and had been blindly preparing for an assault against Grimlock, Alexander's next step in his "grand plan".

It cames as something as a terrible shock then, when the greater part of the hive fleet splinter in the Rim Worlds arrived in the Rhesius system. Alexander immediately panicked and abandonned the world, leaving two chapters of space marines of the Salamanders and Dark Angels behind. The astartes refused to simply abandon the world to the aliens and were determined to make a stand here, killing as much of the tyranid biomass as they could. In addition, they needed to buy time so certain information and genetic coding could be eliminated from the Rhesian environment so that Nemesis would be unable to take advantage on it.

The tyranid swarm came on frighteningly quickly and with overwhleming force. The two space marine chapters did not work well together and the Salamanders quickly found themselves isolated. Chosing attack as the best form of defence they soon found themselves in serious trouble. Most of the vangaurd forces were wiped out and a hasty evacuation was organised for th rest of the Salamanders.

The Dark Angels faired little better. They were unable to stop the rapid build up of alien forces on Rhesius and after costly battles with the aliens they too abandonned New Sparta, much of the sabotage work left undone.

The consequences of Alexander's shameful retreat and botched operations finally led General Roover to take decisive action against his subordinate. Alexander had too many friends in high places to simply dismiss, but Roover soon posted him to the Valitane subsector - a peaceful region where he could do little harm, at least for the moment. Roover then brought the capable General Alayn Brooke in as his replacement, and Brooke immediately set about reshaping imperial strategy in the Zadoc subsector, which up till now had been an unmitigated disaster.

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