Friday, July 30, 2021
Tuesday, July 13, 2021
Further south, hordes of chaos forces simply overwhelmed the front line, and once again Kutuzov was forced to ask for help from his reserve forces. This time the Sisters of Battle threw themselves into the fray, desparately trying to plug the gaps in the lines that the chaos forces had opened. Despite mowing down great swathes of the enemy they too were unsuccessful, and it looked increasingly likely that the chaos forces would now exploit these northern and southern breaches in the lines.
The exploitation and breakthrough never came however. By now, the Emerald Serpent and its allies understood the strategic situation on Mordecai Secundus, and realised any territory taken now would only put them in a more vulnerable position. Kutuzov, with his improved supply lines would be able to attack their flanks and potentially win back all the ground as well as net vast numbers of their troops. Instead, the chaos forces pulled back, content with the losses they had inflicted and beginning a new war of attrition on Mordecai.
Concerned by events, including the suggestion that ork forces may be in the system as well, Tau commander Malkaor considered calling off the attacks altogether, but was convinced to make one last raid for the pride of the Air Caste. This raid was much more successful, and the Tau fighters managed to down several Imperial thunderbolt fighters before returning to base. No real damage was done to ether the Imperial or Tau installations, but Tau pride had been restored.
The first sites to suffer at the hands of Stitch were Vanir, the most exposed Imperial outpost in the Expanse, and Hexis, where Hive Fleet R'Lyeh came to the attention ofthe dark eldar for the purposes of their "sports" held in Commoragh. The Adeptus Mechanicus forces on Vanir were taken by surprise by the sudden appearance of a Drukhari raidiing force, and ultimately were out-maneuvered by the fast moving Xenos forces. The dark eldar took many slaves, a great deal of equipment and did much damage to the installations at Vanir before stronger forces were able to be deployed to encourage them to return to the webway.
On Hexis, the tyranids were a more tricky prospect. The arrival of the Drukhari raiding force triggered the Hive Fleet's defensive mechanisms, and a horde od beasts came charging at Baron Stitch's forces. For some time it looked like the raid was going to end in disaster, but the dark eldar kept their composure and managed to weather the charge by the giant alien beasts, while dealing with the host of smaller creatures accompanying them. Eventually the tyranid charge faltered, and the Drukhari managed to capture at least two of the larger creatures for their entertainment in the dark city. Their raids in the Hadron Expanse were finally proving profitable.
Monday, June 07, 2021
Monday, May 31, 2021
Thursday, May 27, 2021
Following on from the sweep into the Abrax Mines, the Imperial advance on Mordecai now had an opportunity. If they could move quickly, a push north encircling the city of Festergax Primus would outflank the chaos defensive line south of Fort Vengeance. These deep and extensive fortifications had held up the imperial advance since the appearance of the daemonworld in the Mordecai system, and now general Kutuzov had the chance to make them irrelevant.
The Imperium first had to find the forces to execute the plan. The astartes had taken the mines to the south, but the imperial guard had still not caught up. The vast majority of Kutuzov's ground forces comprised of infantry regiments, and these by nature were slow. If the Imperium was to effectively take advantage of the situation and trap several chaos armies now defending the Festergax salient, they would need to act fast and new forces would be required.
Fortunately for Kutuzov a significant force of Adeptus Mechanicus had just become available. The Archmagos in charge of this army agreed with the imperial assessment of the strategic situation and deployed from orbit in the area of the Abrax mines. Pushing north, the Mechanicum used their technological advantage against the enemy, deterimining that the flanks of the salient were only weakly defended by a force of Red Corsairs. In late 05.021M42 the warriors of the Omnissiah smashed through the Corsairs' defence and rapidly pushed north, reaching the northern imperial lines in mere days.
Outflanked and surrounded, the chaos forces within the Festergax pocket had no chance. With Kutuzov's guard armies now pushing in from the east, those mobile forces loyal to the dark gods, mostly traitor space marines, abandoned their positions and withdrew to safety. For the remaining chaos armies, there was only death, either in a last stand against overwhelming odds or by mass execution following capture. By the end of 05.021M42 Festergax had fallen, the chaos defences that had been a thorn in his side for so long were captured, and the Imperium looked towards a new offensive west as 06.042M42 began.
Monday, May 17, 2021
While Malkaor was overseeing the affairs at Boltarean, both the Imperial and Tau forces had reinforced their positions at Tanis. Far from their supply lines, both sides were looking to establish a base in the Hadron Deeps. For the Tau this would outflank and divide Imperial positions. For the Imperium, it would shore up their supply lines and effectively shut out the Tau from further expansion into the Hadron Deeps, and take the pressure of Vanir and Oreen.
05.021M42 saw a concerted effort to accelerate the Tau plans to dominate the Hadron Expanse and complete the creation of their "Hadron Expansion Sphere". The Tau leadership devised two task forces, one to continue the war against chaos in the Boltarean system while a separate force was detailed to reinforce the foothold the Tau had gained in the Tanis system. The Tau plan was twofold. Boltarean was the final chaos dominated system in the Hadron Expanse and would only fall to a direct assault. The Imperium, with their bases at Vanir and Oreen, would first need to be stopped at the far flung Tanis. Doing this would isolate General Konev's armies at Hexis from the rest of the Imperium, which would then find itself flanked on two sides, unable to determine from which direction the Tau attack would come from.
By 05.021M42 the news of necron stirrings in the Hadron Expanse had reached the ears of General Pervical, still the overall commander of Imperial forces in the region. During his tenure the Imperium had lost their holdings at Hussaria and Awarath to the Tau, had seen the expedition to Hexis fail to achieve its objectives, and still hadn't removed the chaos threat from Palantir. Percival was not removed however, as Titus Luthor was accutely aware of how starved of resources the Imperium was in the Expanse.
Not wishing to simply yield ground to the necrons, Percival sent a task force to the Ceti system, while recieving assurances from the Hammers of the Emperor that they would cover the Imperial system most at risk from the resurgent necrons at Vanir.
The joint Imperial strike force reached the Ceti system to find the necrons fully awake and assaulting the Adeptus Mechanicus base on the outer world of the system, sending wave after wave of necrons from the tombworld itself. The Imperial force attempted to turn back the tide but it became evident that the flood of warriors coming from Baal of Bones could not be held by the forces the Imperium had sent to the system. After a brutal battle that saw the Imperium lose their task force commander, the Imperium abandoned the world, retreating back to Vanir where the Hammers of the Emperor had successfully seen off the necron threat for now.