Monday, July 01, 2013
Zadoc: Chaos uprising
For months the situation on Zadoc had been deteriorating. With food stocks dwindling and supplies from Tyranteous becoming fewer and more sporadic, the great cities were suffering more and more unrest. The highly stratified society of Zadoc ensured the poorest suffered first, and as food prices spiralled out of control, vast throngs of angry and hungry citizens began protests in each of the cities. These soon became riots, and the Adeptus Arbites and the local PDF spent much of their time putting down the unrest. Governor Valentine Pole did much protesting to the Lord commander of the Sector, but in general, Pole took little action to alleviate the problems on his world, and much food was wasted or squandered by the rich while the poorest starved.
The city of Celliano, governed by a cartell of merchants in much the same way as the rest of the planet, first reported problems on 2006.013M42. At first the ruling elite on Zadoc believed the subsequent loss of contact with the settlement, home to 17 million inhabitants, was just a symptom of a rather more successful uprising, but the PDF regiment sent in to restore order soon found something much worse, reporting an army of cultists following the "Arch Cleric", backed by blasphemous warmachines and the agents of chaos. The PDF regiment was annihilated.
The response to the news of chaos forces on Zadoc was remarkably swift. General Montgomery immediately assigned several Librian regiments to Zadoc, ordering Libria herself to double her military tithe. The Salamanders, at the time conducting operations on Hylas and Tyranteous, already had forces on Zadoc, and these were rapidly redeployed to the northern city. Meanwhile Governor Pole became another casualty of Commissar-General Crowe, removed from power and placed under house arrest for his dereliction of duty and woeful handling of the Zadoc food crisis.
The Librians and Salamanders found the city of Celliano already held by the forces of chaos, and intelligence suggested daemonic forces as well as those of the hated Word Bearers traitor legion in place in the city. It seemed the Word Bearers had found fertile ground in which to spread their treacherous and heretical ideas. On 3006.013M42 the imperial force attacked from Chemart, directly assaulting the rebel city. At first the battle went well, as the Salamanders forced their way into the heart of the city, while the Librians protected the astartes flanks.
The Librians had difficulties however, finding the streets of Celliano less than ideal for their mechanised force, and it became increasingly difficult to redeploy their armoured assets as the chaos forces rapidly moved to meet the threat of the Salamanders. In the centre the fighting was brutal. While imperial artillery massacred the lightly armed and armoured cultists, the forces of the Arch Cleric concentrated on the Salamanders' thrust. Here both sides took heavy casualties, with the elite of the elite trying desperately to break the chaos line. However the Salamanders fell just short, and by early 07.013M42 it was clear that the imperial force hadn't managed to dislodge the chaos forces from critical objectives in the city. Reluctantly the Salamanders commander ordered his forces to withdraw, and the Librians backed off too, forming a defence line just to the west of the city.