Wednesday, July 30, 2008

+++The Fall of Priam
+++Report by Imperial Scholar Aponymous Gatch

My Lord,

Whilst the fall of the Rim Worlds to Chaos and Tau forces is of course a great blow to the Imperial presence here, at the very least I suggest that it has presented us with the opportunity to learn about our foes. Certainly much was debated amongst the Imperial command about the strange new threat posed by the peculiarly named Moonface Catechism, a collection of rogue warbands who worship the dark gods.

Though it is unfortunate that Priam is now lost to us, taken by the Catechism, I have taken the liberty of reviewing what information our psykers and scanner equipment could pick up. Hopefully this will enable us further understanding of this threat.

All reports indicate that the enigmatic 'Moonface' was not present at Priam. It is believed that the invading force was only part of the whole Catechism. Certainly recent attacks upon Daedalon did not come from the same force. The Catechism is believed to have a number of tendrils, spreading out from the centre which presumably contains Moonface itself.

Though a high producer of luxury goods, Priam is not a highly important planet from a strategic point of view. Though some of Priam's factories may have been converted to arms manufacture by the Catechism, the scale that this could be performed at is negligible. The planet also has few natural resources. Priam is relatively lightly defended, and other Chaos forces are present in the Rim Worlds (see ref. Night Lords). This leads me to a number of hypotheses as to why the Catechism targeted Priam:

- The Catechism simply wish to cause mayhem / strike a blow at the Imperium.

- The 'Catechism process' (see below) is more effectively forged during battle (see ref. Invasion of Hartak).

- The Catechism wishes to present itself as an ally of other Chaos forces, possibly to later introduce them into the Catechism.

The Catechism process (as I shall refer to it as) is something we have been able to sucessfully gather information on from Priam. Over all territory taken by the Chaos forces broadcast posts are set up, with a higher density in urban areas. These constantly submit a series of tenets. These are sentboth sonically, by taking over all media/communications and simply through numerous loud speakers, and also through psychic waves. Based upon our information I estimate there are 99 tenets repeated continuously to all Chaos forces and all Imperial citizens.

***Insert Ref. Moonface Catechism # 34***
How might Moonface be glorified? The destruction of the Imperium, the overthrow of the Emperor.
***End of Insert***

The effect is to change the mind set of the listeners, a form of brain washing. The unfortunate will subtly be altered to worship Moonface and support the Catechism. I would therefore recommend any citizens in areas reclaimed from the Catechism are exterminated as their minds will no longer be thinking of the glory of the Emperor.
It is also evident that the brain washing process works more effectively on the warriors of Chaos if they are on the battlefield. Here it would appear they are more susceptable to the psychic conditioning, though the reason for this is still not fully known.

We have also been able to gather some information on the composition of the Catechism's forces. It would appear the armies arrayed for battle are highly varied, though certain features are commonly seen (see refs. Defiler, Obliterator, Plague Marine, Thousand Son). It has been seen that the Catechism do adapt to forces they face, making them especially dangerous. As more warbands join them their options can only grow, so it is recommend that their growth is stopped as soon as possible.

It is as yet unkown what interest they have in the major Chaos forces in the region, the Night Lords. A recent attempt by the Catechism to attack Daedalon, where the Night Lords already have a strong presence, was stopped by Tau invaders. It is my belief that the Catechism wished to ally itself with the Night Lords and then use the Catechism process to convert thetraitor marines. This is however a fairly large scale upgrading of the Catechism's current ways, moving from influencing small warbands to huge legions. We can only hope this plan never comes to fruition.

Hopefully my lord this information has been valuable to the Imperial Command. We cannot ignore this growing threat to the Imperium, but I leave this report in your capable hands and the hands of the Emperor.

Your humble servant,

Aponymous Gatch

Hylas: Eldar fail to halt the Night Lords

While a force from the Saim Hann Craftworld dealt with the Orks on Memnon,another was sent to Hylas to investigate Chaos activity there. What they found alarmed them. The Night Lords had landed and set up a well defended base and the Eldar feared that this would inevitably be used as a springboard for raids into the Mabb nebula proper, a region where exodite worlds were hidden among the dust and gas. The Chaos Marine presence onHylas could not be allowed to remain.

The attack however did not go as well as that against the Orks on Memnon.The Marines were better trained and prepared, and showed none of thesurprise the greenskins displayed. The fast moving Eldar forces found their firepower lacking, and deadly counter assaults by the Chaos forces devastated the Saim Hann raiding force. Even their Wraithlord eventually fell, cut neatly in two by the daemonic war engine known as "Mr Scuttle".Defeated the Eldar withdrew, planning to return before the Night Lords built up an insurmountable position on Hylas.

Memnon: Eldar ambush Speed Freaks

While Chaos and Tau forces fought it out to achieve supremacy in the Rim Worlds the Eldar viewed the invasion of the Mabb nebula with greater concern. Memnon and Hylas were too close to Eldar holdings and their conquest by hostile forces could not be tolerated. The human settlers had known to keep away from the inner Mabb nebula, but the Eldar knew this was not something the Orks or Chaos were likely to do. In the previous week the Night Lords expansion onto Memnon had been checked when Kel Sandros Eldar forces launched their attack. Now the Orks, having also landed vanguard forces on Memnon, would feel the wrath of the ancient race.

Appearing from hidden webway portals the Eldar of another craftworld,possibly Saim Hann, attacked the Ork Speed freaks who were acting as Nazghat's scouts. Although initially the Orks matched the Eldar, the latter's Wraithlord proved devastating, ripping apart lightly armoured Ork machines and warbikes. Knowing they were outmatched, the Orks fled back totheir landing camp to report that the Eldar race had been awoken into action on Memnon.

Sunday, July 27, 2008

Hawkeye and Moonface land on Daedalon

With the minor planets in the Rim Worlds falling with alarming rapidity, the Chaos and Tau leaders realised control over the region now came down to a straight fight between them. The Imperium had been knocked out and the Orks were still far away with the Imperial main bases in between. The Rim Worlds in the upper Perseus Deeps would be dominated by Chaos, or the ever expanding Tau Empire.

With two bases each, Daedalon now became the crucial planet. If it were conquered by Chaos, the Tau would find themselves hemmed in, with no clear route to the hubward systems beyond the Perseus Deeps. If however, they couldtake Daedalon the Tau would cut the Chaos holdings in two, and Typhon and Priam would be isolated from their main base at Grimlock.

Despite concerns over the over-extension of Tau forces, Hawkeye landed on the planet, where the Night Lords had already established a base and were successfully clearing the Tyranids of Hive Fleet Phoenix from the dense forests. Moonface realised that Lord Raziel would not have sufficient force to face both the Tyranids, which he was defeating, and the newly landed Tau.

Moonface landed his expeditionary force on Daedalon just days after Hawkeye had made planetfall, once again evading any contact in space. Immediately his forces attacked the Tau, but they were ready. Moonface found himself frustrated by ill-discipline in his own ranks, and the ponderously slow advance of his Thousand Sons marines, following the destruction of his transport vehicles by accurate railgun fire. These events conspired against the Catechism, dealing them a rare defeat. The Chaos forces were forced to withdraw and consider their options, while Hawkeye consolidated his landing area on Daedalon.

The Catechism secures Priam

With Rhesius taken by the Tau the Imperial Inquisitor Ignatious had only on base of operations in the Rim Worlds, and when the inevitable Chaos attack came he was determined to fight for his small base.

Despite being vastly outnumbered the Daemonhunters put up a strong defence of the last Imperial base in the Rim Worlds. His elite troops fought valiantly but in vain. By the en of 3007.008M42 the situation was hopeless and during the night Ignatious and his remaining forces fled back to their small fleet, rendezvousing with his shattered army from Rhesius in the depths of space. The Moonface Catecism had taken Priam, and the Imperial presence in the Rim Worlds had been erased.

Hawkeye and Lightspear conquer Rhesius

Following the Tau landing on Rhesius the Daemonhunters moved back to their base on the planet, fearing it would fall to the fresh Tau assault. The Imperial fleet, supposedly ordered to intercept the forces of the Tau, failed to appear, allowing the aliens to send more forces to back up Hawkeye’s advance guard.

Commander Lightspear, relatively inexperienced, was chosen by Sunstrike, with dual aims; consolidate the Tau hold in the Rim Worlds and prevent Shadowstrike from taking all the glory. However, Lightspear got on well with Hawkeye and planned a new assault to take the capital of Rhesius, Simius.

Lightspear attacked head on, attacking the well dug in Trebbian 9th with their forces. Initially the Tau found themselves pinned down, until squads of stealth suits outflanked the Imperial positions, taking out their heavy artillery. They were slain to a man, but their death had eased the pressure in the centre of the Imperial defensive positions.

Lightspear took his time, fending off waves of Infantry assaults, each destroyed by the superior Tau firepower. Then, with the light fading on 2607.008M42, Lightspear ordered an all out attack. It succeeded, with the Trebbian forces falling back to deeper positions, but Simius had fallen. Now if Hawkeye could take Inquisitor Ignatious’ base the Imperium would certainly lose their hold on the planet.

Hawkeye did just that, using his Kroot to outflank a strong Imperial position. The Kroot hounds were particularly savage, murdering Grey Knight troopers and taking the right flank of the Imperial line. On the left a bitter fight ensured the Imperial forces did manage to force the Tau back, but their position had been fatally compromised, and the Inquisitor evacuated his forces, leaving the Trebbians to their fate.

Fortunately the Tau and Imperial commanders saw sense, and two thirds of the Imperial regiments were allowed to evacuate the planet. The Imperium rescued several thousand troops, while the Tau prevented any more lives being lost in the fight for Rhesius. Hawkeye and Lightspear celebrated the fall of Rhesius on 2907.008M42.

Sunday, July 20, 2008

Zadoc Subsector - Current Map

Click to enlarge

The Imperium considers its options

On 2407.008M42 Imperial high command commissioned a senior tactician to analyse the situation in the Zadoc subsector and recommend a course of action. The outposts in the Mabb Nebula and in the upper Perseus Deeps were being lost at an alarming rate and the Imperial forces seemed to lack a central strategy to contain the myriad threats which beset the subsector. Although no major worlds were immediately under threat, there were many in the Imperium who were appalled by the consistent losses, particularly on Tyndareous and Danelloth.

Requester: +++CLASSIFIED+++
Date: 2007.008M42
Access point: Station Alterain Zadoc
Achivist: Hellian Griaz
Security Clearance: Aurantius-γ
Ref: Zsl.DtBs.2984298404/V
Search terms: Zadoc defence policy
Secondary items: Mabb Nebula, Perseus Deeps. Danelloth, Tyndareous, New Sparta, Priam.
Thought for the day: No joy is more pure than that found in doing one's duty!

My lords,

The following is a summary of my findings on the current activity in the Zadoc subsector, particularly that in the so-called Rim Worlds (Perseus Deeps) and Shadow Worlds (Mabb Nebula). These threats must be taken as a whole to provide a picture of the overall danger to Imperial interests, but the possibility of invasion or attack on the established Imperial worlds in the subsector must be analysed in the motives of each of the forces involved in the conflicts.

The Tau
The Tau have only been limited players in the recent increase in violence in the subsector, following the costly war on Melberg. Only Hawkeye, one of Shadowstrike’s lieutenants has been active, directing his attacks from Tau holdings in the Perseus Deeps (Cernunnos, Parataea, Lucardium), and has to date managed to conquer the warring factions of New Sparta. With his invasion of the small colony of Rhesius, it looks likely that a limited Tau colonisation of this region is the intention.

Such an invasion will be difficult to sustain given the current Tau assets in the subsector, and providing Hawkeye’s fleet can be neutralised, the Tau expansion in this region should be easily checked.

Recommendation: Increase patrols from Caitlen station to isolate and destroy the Tau fleet.

The recent resurgence of Chaos forces in the Aleph sector as a whole is deeply disturbing. Forces believed to be spent have resurfaced, such as the Moonface Catechism, which will almost certainly take Priam, and the Night Lords under “Lord Raziel”, who have already overthrown Imperial law on Typhon and taken Tyndareous by force. Neither force has a large spacefleet but both are being transported (it is believed) by the fleets of Lord Traegan and Admiral Thok.

A third force has also been identified working for Chaos in the Zadoc subsector, the Death Guard legion, though this faction seems subservient to both the Catechism and the Night Lords.

Though the individual motives and short term plans of the Chaos forces are difficult to uncover, it is clear that they are working together in an effort to carve out small Empires from the ashes of the Imperium. To stop this I recommend that we face the Chaos threat on these comparatively unimportant worlds before they collectively assault a major Imperial world.

Additionally the fleet of the rogue and unpredictable Admiral Thok must be hunted down and destroyed. The victory at Rhesius was insuffient to dissuade his lunatic actions.

Since the Chaos forces are comprised of three factions Imperial agents should seek to “divide and conquer”, breaking up the unholy alliance of the Chaos legions. We already know that the Moonface Catechism will not be subservient to anyone and it is highly unlikely that Lord Raziel will take orders from Moonface. Additionally there is no love lost between the devotees of Nurgle and the Night Lords, so a wedge should be driven there also.

The Orks
Waagh! Nazghat has been gaining in strength over recent months and with his speed freak allies it is clear that the Orks are intent on conquering the Mabb Nebula and liberating the Ork held Keprok by destroying the Imperial forts which protect nearby space lanes.

The Orks advance through space in a hap-hazard fashion, and their fleet is relatively poorly equipped. At least half the fleet of the subsector should be employed hunting the Orks in space before they get a foothold on the planets they are invading. Additionally, quick reaction forces, well equipped, are needed to counter any initial Ork invasion. Danelloth fell simply because insufficient resources were brought to bear too slowly, similarly to the loss of Tyndareous to Chaos.

Other Forces
The Eldar are potential allies but as ever it is difficult to rely on a capricious alien race. Their interest in Memnon proves they are as unhappy with Ork and Chaos colonisation of the worlds in the Mabb Nebula as we are.

The Tyranids have been found on a number of worlds in the subsector, but it seems the hive fleet itself is fractured and dispersed. Triton is a spent force though Hive fleet Phoenix, a splinter of Triton, may yet prove destructive.

Current tactical simulations and prognostications indicate the following risks.

Should Priam fall Chaos will already control two worlds in the upper Perseus Deeps and on in the Mabb nebula. Further losses here would seriously endanger the shipping route from Libria to Zadoc. This risks isolating the lower Zadoc subsector with the possible implications of losing Libria and Tyranteous.

If the Waagh! Nazghat is allowed to rage unchecked the Orks will inevitably attempt an assault on a major Imperial world. The loss of more planets in the Mabb nebula puts at risk the systems of Alphe and Betor in the upper Zadoc subsector particularly.

While the Tau position is not as yet that strong in the subsector, more conquests by Hawkeye in the Rim worlds simply improves their holdings in the Perseus Deeps and fuels their lust for unfettered expansion. It should not be forgotten however that the Tau may prove invaluable allies in the fight against the Orks and Chaos.

Imperial strategy must be co-ordinated from a central point. A force of at least three Adeptus Astartes chapters and at least thirty Imperial Guard regiments should be assembled into several rapid reaction forces, able to meet any threat in the subsector quickly and ruthlessly.

Such an assembly of forces however will overstretch the current fleet provision and leave shipping routes unprotected. Additionally there are less than five companies of Astartes in the subsector.

Imperial High Command should seek extra forces given the increase in hostiles in the recent months, citing the arrival of Chaos and Ork forces as the major threat. I recommend an increase in the fleet assets by at least six capital ships of the line. Since only one can be built every two years at Caitlen, we must ask fo assistance from the Naval High Command at Kar Duniash.

The Imperial Guard levy should also be increased on Libria, while we should seek the external recruitment of no less than ten regiments.

If we fail to meet the threats in the Rim Worlds and in the Shadow Worlds, we may soon find ourselves fighting our enemies on our strategically valuable holdings. It is far more preferable to hold our enemies at arms length.

Hylas infiltrated by Chaos

Hylas was next to feel the Chaos wrath. Up till 1807.008M42 Hylas had escaped the war which had engulfed the outposts in the Mabb nebula, and the five million Imperial citizens prayed to the Emperor for their continued peace. If He heard their prayers he didn’t listen.

The Night Lords arrived on the planet just days after the fall of Tyndareous and the inhabitants didn’t need to know the fate of their neighbours as the traitor marines spread terror and death among outlying settlements, in exactly the same vein as had occurred on Tyndareous. To save their citizens the Imperium would have to send forces to counter the Night Lords, whereupon the Chaos Marines would smash them.

Inquisitor Ignatious’ first lieutenant, leading the crusade in the Mabb nebula was the first to arrive, landing at the planet’s spaceport just days after the first reports of Chaos activity had been received. Clearly the Daemonhunters had anticipated the Night Lords’ next move, and the Imperial elite strike force accepted the Chaos forces’ challenge.

The Night Lords were hunted down by the Daemonhunters and eventually they were forced to give battle. The fight became incredibly bloody as the two elite forces clashed. The battle ebbed and flowed and the Imperial forces began to do serious damage to the traitors, something they had not suffered against Imperial forces to date.

Even so the Daemonhunters could not shift the Night Lords’ from the terrain they had elected to defend and after an epic struggle were forced to withdraw, allowing the Night Lords’ vanguard force to slip away after dark. Their victory ensured that Hylas would continue to be terrorised by traitor forces. The Daemonhunters requested aid from Imperial high command and wondered just how many forces were left in the Zadoc subsector to counter all the threats the Imperium was now facing.

Tyndareous falls to Chaos as Night Lords crush Librians

Tyndareous became the second world in the Zadoc subsector to fall to Chaos on 1907.008M42 as Colonel Spiggot’s forces were swept aside as Flack and Slade were assaulted by the full force of the Night Lords.

It was a straight battle of annihilation. The Chaos marines sought out Imperial forces and destroyed them, rather than attempting to take territory. This change in tactics was crippling to the Imperial defenders, who expected the Night Lords to assault key objectives. With alarming speed the Librian Grenadier units were crushed, and armoured reserves could not break the Chaos advance.

To Colonel Spiggot it seemed his Grenadiers were a spent force. Suffering from exhaustion the troops could not hit their targets and folded when assaulted in close combat. Despite the destruction of defiler war engines and a furious firefight which led to the demise of all but a single member of a Chaos Marine squad, the Night Lords’ losses were but pinpricks. Spiggot evacuated what he could, including most of the 1st AirCav to the safety of the Redoubtable.

The Imperial Warship left the system in Chaos hands, bombarding Slade and reducing it to a smoking ruin before heading towards the jump point. No-one in the Imperial command aboard could know if the orbital bombardment had done any damage, but their own ground troops had done precious little in the campaign for Tyndareous...

Daedalon: Night Lords exterminate hive fleet Phoenix

Lord Raziel, leader of the Night Lords’ faction in the Zadoc subsector, had no intention of settling for remaining on Typhon for the duration. Narrowly missing Inquisitor Ignatious the vanguard of the Night Lords’ force landed on Daedalon to find very little in the way of defenders. The Adeptus Mechanicus research station lay abandoned and scouts soon found the forests thick with Tyranid infestation.

The remnants of Hive Fleet Triton, now dubbed “Phoenix” by Imperial codifiers, attacked the Chaos Marines at their landing zone on 1807.008M42. Though brutal, the assault foundered and the Night Lords found themselves in a classic “bug hunt”, exterminating the aliens with alacrity. Rather than pursuing the aliens into the forests the Night Lords were content to set up a strong base of operations on the planet, occupying the old Imperial outpost.

Rhesius: Hawkeye assault Trebbian 9th Legion

Rhesius was next on the Tau battle plans. Since the raid by Admiral Thok the Imperium had made several changes to the system’s defence, but did not expect a full scale invasion. The Imperial fleet had been moved back to Caitlen Station, to protect the important Imperial worlds of the subsector, but the planet’s defence had been bolstered by the addition of the Trebbian 9th Legion, an inexperienced but well equipped Imperial Guard regiment.

Hawkeye was pleased to find no Imperial fleet to contend with and made his landings close to the main inhabited zone. He and his commanders prepared for a quick and surgical strike on the capital to take their second outpost in the Rim Worlds, but this time the Tau commander did not have things his own way.

The Trebbian forces had prepared well and as the Tau moved forward theu found themselves pinned down by ferocious mortar and Thudd gun fire, the first time the Tau had faced such formations in battle. Realising his attack had stalled Hawkeye sent his Kroot around the left flank, while he personally commanded the attack on the right flank, leading veteran crisis suits into battle.

The Kroot did well, rescuing the Tau left flank from scouting Sentinels, but on the right flank the Tau suffered a serious reverse. Although the crisis suits proved superior to the Imperial soldiers in close combat, when their opponents fell back the Tau came under heavy fire from close range Imperial weaponry. This led to the deaths of a number of Tau veterans, and Hawkeye, ruffled, ordered an immediate and ignominious retreat.

For a while it looked as if the Trebbians might hold off the Tau, but as the Tau left flank buckeld, the Tau centre found its strength and began to creep forward into the Imperial defences. Lacking sufficient heavy weaponry the Tau armour found considerable success, first destroying the Trebbian tanks and then using submunition on the Imperial infantry. Reluctantly, on 1907.008M42, after three days of bitter fighting, the Imperial commnder was forced to order a general withdrawal.

The Tau quickly moved in, taking approximately two fifths of the inhabited area of Rhesius. However, they had made a meal of their first assault and allowed the Imperial defenders to dig in in their remaining occupied zones. In addition, they had successfully called for help. Now the Tau would have to prevent reinforcement from space as well as consolidating their position.

Ignatious clashes with Hawkeye on New Sparta

Reports of the Tau landings on Daedalon reached the Imperium on 0107.008M42, but it took the Imperial Forces a while to put together sufficient forces to provide a response. After all the Imperium was now facing war on many fronts. Inquisitor Ignatious however was already in the Rim Worlds following his activities there, so moved with all haste to Daedalon.

He found nothing. The Tau had gone and the Inquisitor had no interest in cleansing the planet of the Tyranids he did find with his small elite force. Instead his investigations led him to New Sparta, where a civil war had all but annihilated the planet’s population.

A week or so later the Inquisitorial forces arrived in the New Sparta system and the Tau were already there, helping one side in the human civil war to achieve victory. Ignatious declared that faction heretics for consorting with Xenos and immediately landed with the intention of wiping out the Tau in the Rim Worlds and winning back New Sparta for the Imperium. His plans could not have gone more wrong.

On the war torn blasted landscape of New Sparta the Daemonhunters faced the experienced and canny commander Hawkeye. As the Imperial force advanced on nearby objectives they came under furious fire, losing several experienced veterans. The rate of fire never faltered from the Tau and despite a determined and stubborn resistance the Tau gained the upper hand with the loss of minimal casualties. Within hours it was clear the surgical strike had failed.

Ignatious left New Sparta in a furious rage and the consequences were immediate. The loyal defenders fighting the Tau, seeing an Inquisitor abandon them, folded immediately. The Tau took New Sparta and called in their reserves, quickly preparing a strike on their next target, Rhesius.

Wednesday, July 16, 2008

Memnon: Night Lords Ambushed by Kel Sandros Eldar

On 1407.008M42 the Night Lords were to find out that the Kel Sandros Eldar,despite having been defeated by the Orks, had far from given up on the planet. As the Chaos Marines moved to consolidate their position on the planet the Eldar attacked them without warning and a fierce battle erupted in a valley a few miles from a Night Lords base.

The Eldar managed to force the Night Lords to withdraw, though casualties were similar on both sides. The Eldar however maintained a tactical edge over their enemy and managed to capture all the high ground, forcing their enemy to disengage.

The Chaos position on Memnon was now precarious and the Eldar hoped the attack would be enough to encourage the Chaos forces to leave. Then the ancient race would only have to rid Memnon of the tiresome greenskins. As had become predictable, the Imperium did nothing to help the small human population of its far flung outpost.

Coronus: Nazghat closes in on Dark Angels’ base.

After their crushing victory over the Dark Angels, Waagh! Nazghat wasted little time following up this success, pushing into the areas defended by the remaining Librian forces. These were lead by Colonel Crealin, who’s main task was to hold the Orks at the secondary defence line, or prevent them from reaching it.

Crealin knew the defences were incomplete, so while they were being constructed he led three companies out into the wilderness to the north of the base to make contact and “dissuade” the Orks from continuing their advance. By 1007.008M42 the Imperial Colonel knew that the Orks were less than 65 miles from their base and would need to be stopped.

Crealin advanced into the undulating hills of the land around the Imperial base, quickly finding his enemy. The green tide then turned south west in an effort to immediately engage their enemy. The battle was typically bloody with Crealin finding it hard to engage his tanks and Hellhounds in the dense terrain. Worse still the Orks were able to close with the Imperial forces much faster than had been anticipated, exposing the Librian armour to Ork assault.

Several tanks were lost as the greenskins tore them open with power claw sand grenades. Crealin had failed to stop the Ork advance and by 1707.008M42the unstoppable Ork Waagh! Had reached the outer defences of the main Imperial base.

Wednesday, July 09, 2008

The Aleph Sector - a timeline of events

011.001M42: Orks and Traitor Marines of the Tiger Claws Legion land on Aleph 4. Hive fleet Morph sighted.
2411.001M42: First Battle of Tallax: Chaos Lord Traegen’s fleet assaults the Imperial civilized world. The Imperial fleet takes heavy losses but Tallaxian PDF units fight off those Chaos troops which get to the surface.
12.001M42: Inquisitor Hathek discovers that the warp field strength around the Aleph 4 system is decreasing, and that some unknown activity from the planet seemed to be effectively increasing the distance between warp and real space - a "warp null" which was becoming a danger to shipping.
01.002M42: Orvicare Rebels but is put back under Imperial control by the Space Wolves.
02.002M42: Sartosa falls without a fight to “chaos renegades” later confirmed to be forces of Admiral Haskell, lost for millnia in the warp.
02.002M42: Lord Traegan assaults Aleph 4 and the “Battle of Aleph Moons” sees Imperial and Chaos warfleets clash. Neither side achieves a decisive victory, but the Imperial forces are forced to withdraw.
02.002M42: Cmmdr Moore’s Battlegroup disappears near Galanesh.
03.002M42: Hive fleet Morph lands on Orvicare. Admiral Haskell encourages the squats on Hartak to rise up against their Imperial oppressors and a civil war erupts.
03.002M42: Lord Traegen’s fleet attacks the Imperial fleet at Aleph 4 once more, inflicting heavy Imperial losses.
04.002M42: Tallax declared heretic for its dealings with Admiral Haskell. Haskell founds the United Federation of Planets, with Sartosa and Hartak as the first members.
04.002M42: Hartak rebels overthrow the Imperial governor and declare independence. The Imperium reacts swiftly and the Dark Angels caste the rebels into the frozen wilderness.
05.002M42: Shadrak’s Sharks, an ork pirate fleet, are destroyed by the Imperial fleet. Meanwhile the situation becomes desperate on Orvicare with the Gregorian Guard barely holding the Tyranids.
05.002M42: Admiral Haskell’s fleet arrive at Hartak and after protracted battles succeed in defeating the Imperial and Dark Angels’ fleets.
05.002M42: Tallax joins the UFP.
06.002M42: Admiral Yamamoto “betrays” the Imperium and joins Haskell’s fleet.
07.002M42: Yamamoto betrays Haskell in accordance with Inquisitor Xanthus’ plans, but overall more damage is inflicted on Imperial ships.
07.002M42: Hathek realizes the warp null on Aleph 4 is being created by an alien device.
2909.002M42: The Tau land on Ciprex 3 but are driven off. It’s the first sighting of Tau in the sector.
10.002M42: Events on Aleph 4 take on a bewildering aspect as Eldar, Ork, Chaos and Imperial forces fight around the areas from where the warp null is emanating. Warp gates are found on the planet.
0711.002M42: The warp generators on Aleph 4 overload with disastrous consequences. The Shockwave cuts off the planet from the universal time stream - weeks will now pass in just a few hours. The wave also blasts the Imperial fleet into the outer reaches of the Aleph system, cut off from the planet.
12.002M42: Fighting on Aleph 4 leads to the four continents being held by four different powers. S’Room by the Imperium, Sennine by Chaos, Entrenec by the UFP and Capscraw to the Eldar. The UFP and Imperium reach a peace accord. In the fighting the Chaos legions turn on each other, with the Night Lords and Tiger Claws all but annihilated. The Iron Warriors and Dark Exterminators become pre-eminent.
01-07.003M42: War continues on Aleph 4 with the battles failing to break the stalemate. However eventually the Iron Warriors are defeated by the UFP and the Dark Exterminators are all but wiped out. The UFP go on to conquer Capscraw leving the Imperium with just a third of the planet. The Iron Warriors blame the defeat on their warsmith for spending too much time on the “Alistair Line”, a set of defences designed to protect them from the Dark Exterminators.
08.003M42: Inexperienced commanders on Hartak lose much of the planet to rebel squat forces. Only Thakor holds out.
09.003M42: Kel Sandros Eldar agents arrange for the peace treaty between the UFP and Imperium to be broken. War once again erupts between the UFP and Imperium. The space battle over Aleph 4 sees a Dark Angels cruiser warp drive overload into the planet’s atmosphere. Mutation erupts in the chaos sector.
10.003M42: The Dark Angels re-invade Hartak, but are stopped by Logan Grimna who negotiates a peace accord between the Imperium and the UFP. The Dark Angels are furious.
03.004M42: The Dark Exterminators invade Hartak but are met with strong UFP resistance, this time aided by their new allies the Tau. Within weeks the Chaos invasion falls apart and the Dark Exterminators are destroyed.
12.004M42: The Zadoc spacelane once again opens as warpstorms clear. The races of the sector clamour to establish a base in the Hellheim system, the half way point of the sace lane.
02.005M42: Cernunnos is colonized by the Tau wile Donar falls to Chaos. On Einmyrria the Imperium, Eldar and Tau forces fight it out to gain control of the barren planet.
03.005M42: The Necron under the surface of Einmyrria are awoken. The Eldar use nuclear weapons to wipe out much of the northern hemisphere and withdraw, allowing the Tau to depart before the explosions. The Imperial forces are not so lucky. Even so a small Imperial base is set up on the planet.
04.005M42: Following further accusations of consorting with Xenos the Imperium declare war on the UFP. This results in Banderossa being invaded by UFP forces, aided by the Eldar and Tau.
06.005M42: Cardinal Sheriden negotiates a peace with the UFP. UFP forces withdraw from Banderossa but the remaining Imperial held territory on Hartak and Aleph 4 is surrendered to the Federation. The Dark Angels are outraged.
08.006M42: After a year of relative peace Tau and UFP forces clash with the Imperium over the small colony of Protogonus.
09.006M42: While Necron activity on Einmyrria increases, the Kel Sandros Eldar invade Ravitane to weaken Imperial authority. After the Blood Martyrs fail to retake the city held by the Eldar, the Imperium is forced to withdraw from Protogonus. It still takes three months for the city to be assaulted, by which time the Eldar vanish.
11.006M42: Einmyrria is assaulted by Tau forces which are all but destroyed. The necrons are once again rooted out and destroyed.
11.006M42: Sheriden launches operation Caterwaul to take back systems in the Perseus Deeps. The assault on Cernunnos fails and war soon develops between Chaos, Tau and Imperial forces on Myrentas II.
12.008M42: The Tau launch operation Sunstrike to take Myrentas II but figting soon gets bogged down. Remnant Iron Warriors forces are found on the planet.
01.007M42: The Imperial operation in the deeps suffers setbacks as they encounter renegade and alien forces. The Imperial fleet goes down to its worst defeat at Jotunheim.
02.007M42: The UFP arrive on Myrentas II and soon turn the tide of battle. Minor battles rage on planets throughout the Persues Deeps.
04.007M42: Inquisitor Xanthus’ ambitious plan to destroy both the Tau and Chaos forces on Myrentas II is thwarted by Danel Levais and a small band of Tau infiltrators.
05.007M42: Following the failure of Admiral Choraeus at Myrentas II the planet falls to the UFP. The Tau are allowed a base on the world, but nothing more. The Iron Warriors disappear.
05.007M42: Tau admiral Swiftstar makes his “Aurelis Crossing”, cutting the time Tau forces take to get to the sector.
06.007M42: The Chaos legions of Kendrenec, now led by “Moonface”, land in strength on Cerberex after neutralizing the Imperial fleet using an arcane device.
06.007M42: The UFP, keen to take Cerberex for themselves, also invade the planet, forcing the Imperium to fight on two fronts. The Imperial fleet is seriously mauled by Federation warships in the largest fleet engagement between the two forces.
06.007M42: Sunstrike calls the Tau to arms in an all out assault on the Imperial world of Melberg. The initial blitzkrieg stalls however, and the Imperial plan is to grind the Tau down in a war of attrition. The Tau are determined to win without the UFP.
07.007M42: Chaos make significant gains on Cerberex while the UFP are all but unstoppable. Imperial commanders realize its only a matter of time before inevitable defeat.
08.007M42: The UFP enter the Cerberex capital, Feducia.
08.007M42: The Imperium make gains and almost wipe the Tau off the map. Sunstrike is concerned. Commander Shadowstrike arrives on Melberg.
08.007M42: Libria V, in the Zadoc subsector, is invaded by the Tyranids of Hive fleet Triton.
09.007M42: The Solar Enslaver, a necron device of enormous power, is hidden by the Eldar. However many races learn of its existence and send forces out to search for it. It transpires one such artifact was hidden on Cerberex, but removed by a shadowy figure when the UFP entered Feducia. Moonface loses interest in Cerberex.
10.007M42: Moonface leaves Cerberex, abandoning his generals. They fight on under Ashurman.
11.007M42: The Imperial defences collapse, leaving the UFP to conquer two thirds of the planet. Exhausted, the Chaos and UFP forces dig in for the long haul. The ongoing war will drag on for years.
12.007M42: With the loss of Cerberex, the Imperium’s hold on the Aleph subsector collapses. The UFP acquire all the remaining planets in the subsector without a fight except Vornax, which is blockaded.
04.008M42: The Eldar find and take two of the three parts of the solar enslaver after a series of successful lightning raids.
05.008M42: The Tyranids are cleansed from Libria V.
05.008M42: The Tau acquire part of the solar enslaver. The expected Eldar strike to take it does not materialize.
06.008M42: After a yer of bitter fighting the remaining Imperial forces on Melberg sue for peace following Admiral Jellicoe’s failure to break the Tau blockade. However, the war severely drained the Tau military resources, and their expansion halts.
07.008M42: War comes to the Zadoc subsector as Orks swarm over the Sadow Worlds and Chaos appears once more in the Perseus Deeps.
07.008M42: Danelloth falls to the Orks while Typhon falls to the Night Lords. Moonface reappears at the head of his “Catechism”.

Tau Melberg Peace Treaty

1. Terms of Ceasefire
1.1. Effective immediately all hostilities by both sides shall cease.
1.2. All non-Tau military personnel and equipment shall not be moved from its present positions until the conditions of this treaty are met.
1.3. The UFP (United Federation of Planets) shall appoint observers to ensure treaty obligations are adhered to by all sides.
1.4. Those occupied territories forming part of the Tau Empire (see section 3 and appendix 1) shall disarm completely with immediate effect. Regimental and military organisations shall be disbanded with immediate effect.
1.5. Tau forces within the territories of the free nations (identified in section 3 and appendix 1) shall retire immediately to the borders of the Tau occupied zone (see appendix 1).
1.6. The retirement identified in 1.5 shall be completed in a period of no more than one standard Imperial week following all signatures.
1.7. All indigenous Prisoners of War shall be allowed to return to their nation of origin following the signing of this treaty.
1.8. All Tau Prisoners of war shall be released into the custody of the Tau Empire immediately following the signature of this treaty.
1.9. All non-indigenous Prisoners of War shall be allowed to join the evacuation of Imperial troops or remain in the Tau occupied zone.

2. Evacuation of Non-Indigenous Troops
2.1. Those units of non-Melberg PDF shall be allowed to leave the Melberg system by troop transport.
2.2. All non Melberg PDF equipment (with the exception of personal equipment able to be carried by one man) shall be destroyed as observed by UFP observers.
2.3. The UFP fleet shall escort the Imperial troops to the edge of Melberg space.
2.4. No Imperial warship shall be permitted into the Melberg primary biosphere region during this evacuation.
2.5. Tau warships shall not leave the Melberg Primary Biosphere region until the evactuation is complete.
2.6. Following the evacuation of the Imperial troops no Imperial warship shall be permitted within the Melberg system. Such an incursion shall be considered an act of war and this treaty becomes null and void.

3. Territorial Re-alignment
3.1. The territories of the free countries of Melberg shall be realigned as per appendix 1.
3.2. Veraconia will regain North Borax.
3.3. Whettis shall cede Atlovea, Russetica, Tunarc, Pelagur, Euradis and Afria to the Tau occupied zone.
3.4. Coronia shall cede Escus, Tirilor, Ugarnica, Tasmacia, Manesini, Erandius, Lithacini, Ethis, and west Euphyrum to the Tau occupied zone.
3.5. Atlas Prime shall be ceded to the Tau Empire.

Administrative Re-organisation
4.1. The territories of Genidius, Gwendel, Narmala, Terris Kingdon and the Isle of Cor shall be the sovereign territory of the Tau Empire, to be governed by those officials appointed by the Tau government.
4.2. The territories of Veraconia, Coronia, Whettis, Actopia, Cannabrini, Thorland and Vaskia shall be governed independently by whichever political system they so desire, subject to the following territory realignment in section 3 (map appendix 1) and military restrictions in section 5.
4.3. There shall exist a de-militarised zone next to the borders of the Tau administered Melberg territories (see appendix 1). No free nation shall deploy armed forces within this territory.

5. Activities and Restrictions of Unoccupied armies
5.1. Each free nation (detailed in section 4) shall be allowed an army no larger than 100,000 combatant personnel.
5.2. Each free nation shall be limited to a maximum number of 100 armoured vehicles.
5.3. Each free nation shall dismantle all ballistic missile and artillery installations which have an effective range greater than 20 miles.
5.4. Each free nation shall surrender its capability of constructing such weaponry identified in item 5.3.
5.5. Existing weaponry and equipment held by each free nation surplus to the terms agreed in items 5.2, 5.3, 5.7, 5.8 and 5.9 shall be destroyed as witnesses by the aforementioned UFP observers.
5.6. Each free nation shall disband its military air capability.
5.7. Each free nation shall disband its military naval capability.
5.8. Each free nation shall disband its military and civilian space faring capability (see sections 6 and 7).
5.9. The adherence of these terms by those nations identified as Free Nations of Melberg shall be open to investigation with no notice required by inspectors appointed by the Tau government of the occupied territories.
5.10.The free nations of Melberg shall benefit from the protection of the Tau Empire from hostile acts perpetrated on them by any external force(s).
5.11.Citizens of the free nations are permitted to apply for membership of the Tau Empire and benefit from the rights enjoyed by such citizens.
5.12.The free nations of Melberg shall not hinder any application identified in 5.11.

6. Off-world Trade
6.1. All off world trade shall be conducted in accordance with the rules and administered by those of the Tau air and water caste.

7. Contact with Off-world Organisations
7.1. All off world communication and contact shall be conducted in accordance with the rules and administered by those of the Tau air and water caste.

8. Other assets
8.1. Assets previously owned and administered by those free nations of Melberg and by the previous Imperial authorites not within the Melberg atmospheric envelope shall be ceded to the Tau Empire. These include but are not limited to:
8.1.1. Melberg orbiting space dock.
8.1.2. Melberg spaceport.
8.1.3. Outer planetary outposts.

9. Settlement and freedom of movement
9.1. Without the express permission of the territory concerned no Tau shall be allowed to settle permanently within a free nation of Melberg.
9.2. Tau and human alike shall be allowed freedom of movement between the Tau controlled area and the free states of Melberg .
9.3. Item 9.2 does not include the movement of arms or armed equipment.
9.4. Non-military use of airborne vehicles by the free nations of Melberg shall be restricted to that area identified in appendix 1, east of the “no fly zone”.
9.5. Tau aircraft shall be allowed unrestricted access over the “no fly zone” identified in appendix 1.
9.6. Tau aircraft shall require the permission to over-fly those free nations not included in the no-fly zone.

10. Activities and Operations of Tau Military Forces
10.1.Tau ground forces shall not incur on the territories of the free nations without the express permission or request of the government thereof.
10.2.Tau air forces shall not incur into the airspace of the free nations (excepting the no-fly zone) without the express permission or request of the government thereof.

11. Treaty
11.1.This treaty shall come into effect immediately following the securing of all signatures.
11.2.The treaty shall be signed by all members as observed by UFP observers in Atlas Prime with the following exceptions
11.2.1. Commander of the Imperial fleet.
11.3.Signatories shall include the following:
11.3.1. Commander of the Tau Invasion Force
11.3.2. Commander of Tau forces (Aleph Expansion Sphere)
11.3.3. Commander of Tau Fleet (Battlegroup Melberg)
11.3.4. Tau Diplomatic Representative
11.3.5. Commander of Imperial (non-indigenous) forces
11.3.6. Commander of Imperial Fleet (Melberg)
11.3.7. UFP Advisory Committee Representative
11.3.8. King of Whettis
11.3.9. Governor of Actopia
11.3.10. President of Coronia
11.3.11. Prime Minister of Cannabrini
11.3.12. Governor General of Vaskia
11.3.13. Chancellor of Thorland
11.3.14. First Minister of Veracon

Appendix 1 – Melberg Territorial realignment

Tuesday, July 08, 2008

Night Lords bloodied on Memnon

Lord Raziel had been concerned by the arrival of a significant Ork presence on Memnon and decided that the Night Lords would have to act quickly. Whilst he was content to make alliances of necessity with the Orks against the Imperium, the planet Memnon held too high a strategic value to allow the Orks a presence. He personally led an expeditionary force onto the planets surface to capture teleporter relays hidden amongst the ruins of the planet but quickly found his force assaulted by a plethora of Orks mounted in fast light vehicles.

The Night Lords deployed in a thick block hoping to fend off the initial ork charge and counter attack to retake the field. However the speed of the Ork attack surprised the marines and the Ork shooting proved highly destructive to the Night Lords battle tanks and long-range support. Many Orks swarmed over the initial chaos marine line of defence and on the right flank an ill disciplined squad of Night Lords deecidd abandoned their role as reserves to the main battle line to take shots at some warbuggies only to find themselves overwhelmed and massacred by the enemy. Raziel’s raptors bodyguards and veteran assault marines managed to counter attack and slew the Ork warlord, his retinue and his trukk boys but found themselves to be the only remaining Night Lords and surrounded by Ork vehicles.

The fearless marines remained undaunted however and rushed towards the ruins to seize the controls for the teleporter relay so that the Night Lord’s losses wouldn’t be in vain. Ork shots rained on power armour as they scurried towards the temple till an ork warbuggy with a rocket launcher opened fire. Lord Raziel selflessly hurled himself in the way of the rocket to save the relay, and his men and was wounded and knocked unconscious. Out of loyalty to his Lord, Brother Zephon slung his lord’s body over his shoulder and with the remaining assault marines made it to the safety of the temple where they were quickly teleported to the orbiting Night Lord Battle Barge. Raziel’s wound proved not to be fatal and the Night Lords had managed to seize control of many of Memnon’s ancient teleporters with which future incursions could advance from. However the loss of life and weaponry to the Orks had been great and the green tide had managed to seize further territory in Memnon strengthening the Ork presence on the planet.

+++ Inquisitorial Note. Recommend the reporter sent for re-affirmation of faith. Traitor marines can never be described as "selfless". As such this report remains security level gamma or better.+++

Priam: Catechism on the brink of victory

Priam’s call for aid did not fall on deaf ears. On 0107.008M42 the Blood Martyrs’ 4th company arrived on the strike cruiser Torment, intent on ridding the planet of the Catechism and its corrupting influence. However, as the Marines landed the defenders of Priam were already suffering, hard pushed to hold their ground against the forces of the Catechism.

Observers noted the presence of all the Chaos Gods among the traitorous forces, and also noted the sheer number of traitor marines on the planet. What had previously been considered as a raiding force was quickly upgraded to an invasion force. The commander of the Blood Martyrs immediately requested two regiments of Imperial Guard while coming up with a mission to delay the Chaos forces from reaching the capital before the Guard units arrived.

By the time he had done this however, the Adeptus Sororitas forces who were in the front line of the fighting were taking heavy casualties, and the Priam PDF were all but spent, or had deserted and joined the Catechism, swelling the Chaos forces still further. It seemed that some inhabitants of the luxury goods manufacturing world, were more than happy to join the traitors.

While mulling the significance of this over, Captail Aurelis of the 4th company sent in his forces against the heart of the Catechism, facing the finest warriors the Chaos traitors could field. As the battle unfolded Aurelis realised with horror, that the Catechism outmatched him.

Thousand Sons Legionarries took a terrible toll on his forces, while Obliterators and defilers tore the heart out of his armour. The battle soon turned into a massacre, as the remnants of the Space Marine company threw themselves at the forces of Chaos in a last ditch attempt to slow their advance. All he managed was to destroy the remnants of the company. Less than a third of the force sent to Priam left without damage or wounds, and fully a third of the precious battle brothers had been slain. By 1007.008M42 the Moonface catechism had the planet of Priam on the brink of capitulation.

Tyndareous: Death Guard encounter Adeptus Sororitas

On Tyndareous the Adeptus Sororitas arrived at the small capital, Slade, on 0107.008M42, after hearing that several settlements had been won over by the Chaos forces which were now on the planet in strength. Tyndareous had two major areas of habitation. Slade, Flack and Hesther were all part of the northern collective in the northern hemisphere, while civilisation in the southern hemisphere centred around the towns of Greystone and Randall. The two settlements were separated by thousands of miles of rocky arid landscape, and it was to the southern collective that the Sisters of Battle embarked.

Following their arrival in Greystone the news that greeted them was bad. Randall had fallen to Chaos Marine forces and the local PDF, some 1000 men, were not up to the task of shifting them. Immediately the Sisters pledged to retake the town in the name of the Emperor of Mankind.

The Death Guard, occupying Randall, had other ideas and met the Sororitas forces half way between the two settlements, on the open rolling landscape of southern Tyndareous. The battle between the two elite forces was bloody and unrelenting, with both sides suffereing significant casualties. On 0707.008M42 both sides withdrew with little gain, leaving Randall under Chaos control.

The arrival of fresh Imperial forces did however resolve the issue of the Tau. Elan Ro realised his forces would do no good intervening in a war between the Imperium and its traitors, so left, under a flag of truce, on 1007.008M42. The Tau would have to look elsewhere for potential colonies in the Zadoc subsector.

Coronus: Orks gain despite Daemonhunters victory

Following the Imperial defeat to the Ork/Chaos army the leading inquisitor in the area, Ignatious, was keen to find out the extent of the Chaos taint in Ork, and Imperial forces. Following his landing near the Dark Angels’ base, the Inquisitor led his forces against an unsuspecting Ork horde.

The elite forces under Ignatious found success, driving the Orks back some twenty miles from the Imperial stronghold, before leaving, the job completed, in their opinion. The Daemonhunters had found no Chaos forces and surmised that the Night Lords had left.

This action however provoked the Orks into action and as Ignatious left, Waagh Nazghat was preparing a fresh assault on the Dark Angels. Fighting soon became vicious and the Marines soon found themselves in trouble, losing men and equipment at an alarming rate. Despite a heroic personal action by the company chaplain the Orks scored a major victory against the Adeptus Astartes, and the Imperial forces had no choice but to retreat to an inner ring of defences around their stronghold. Coronus hung in the balance.

Saturday, July 05, 2008

Danelloth Falls

After weeks of holding out on the outpost of Danelloth the final nail in the coffin was Nazghat’s assault on the main Imperial complex on 2606.008M42. The base was defended by the Adeptus Sororitas and they women of the Ecclesiarchy fought bravely as Brigadier Lethbridge-Stewart frantically organised an evacuation.

Several thousand troops were air-lifted to the waiting troop ships and then cruiser Illustrious, while the Sisters of Battle gave their lives holding the perimeter. Yard by yard, and at terrible cost, Nazghat’s Orks gained ground, eventually overrunning the last Imperial defenders. Danelloth was finally in Ork hands, and the Imperial fleet abandoned it to its fate.

Coronus: Ork Horde encroaches on Imperial Base

The loss of Danelloth was keenly felt by Imperial sector high command, but they couldn’t dwell on it for long as just a week after Danelloth fell, Ork hulks were detected in the Coronus system. The Imperial base had been reinforced by the recent arrival of Librian Grenadiers from Danelloth but the Orks were not the only problem on Coronus.

The Night Lords were still in the vicinity. On seeing the large Ork fleet arrive they realised they could certainly deal the Imperium a damaging blow, if not a fatal one, on Coronus if they could organise an alliance, albeit temporary, with the Orks.
Lord Raziel’s Marines, under brother Dumah, were successful in his negotiations and the combined Ork and Chaos army launched itself into a ferocious assault against the Imperial forces defending the base’s perimeter. The fire of several Leman Russ battle tanks and Hellhound flame tanks caused horrendous casualties in the centre of the Ork lines, but Chaos marines used the village on their left flank to approach the Imperial troops in relative safety. Meanwhile on the right, Ork speed freaks very quickly engaged the cream of the Dark Angels’ assault troops.

On the Imperial right a vicious battle erupted between the Dark Angels and Night lords, while the speed freaks turned the Imperial flank. Although the attack was stalled in the centre, both sides of the Imperial army found themselves fighting for their lives.

On 2906.008M42 the Imperial commanders decided to withdraw to a secondary defence line, realising that to stay any longer meant being surrounded by the Ork-Chaos alliance. By nightfall on the same day the Orks had advanced to within 80 miles of the Dark Angels’ base, and found themselves firmly on the back foot.

Thursday, July 03, 2008

Tyndareous: Airborne Assault

Following the action against the Night Lords in 06.008M42 the Imperial Commander Colonel Spiggot came under intense pressure from High Command to take the fight to the enemy, not least to show up the Tau, who had been relatively inactive in their sector in the previous few weeks. Spiggot demanded reinforcements, troops which were able to match the speed and mobility of Tau forces, thinking his sarcastic communique would be understood by his superiors Eight days later the Librian 1st Airborne Cavalry unit arrived.

The Airborne Cavalry were a newly formed regiment, founded in the short years following the approval of Libria’s production of Valkyrie and Vulture aircraft. Only four regiments existed in 04.008M42 and none had seen combat. Spiggot was less than convinced by the new arrivals but immediately began planning an operation to attack the Night Lords’ territory. Perhaps novelty value and surprise alone would be a winning factor. The plan was simple. Surprise the Night Lords, destroy as much as possible, then get out. However the execution of the plan turned into a bloody shambles.

Tactical doctrine stated that airborne assaults should arrive together, in one shocking and overwhelming wave, supported by sentinels and Vulture attack ships. On Tyndareous the operation became a demonstration of how not to co-ordinate a drop…

First of all the Command units arrived before the other Valkyries, each holding ten stormtroopers. The heavy lifter aircraft, carrying the sentinels, went the wrong way, critically delaying their arrival. Worse was to follow, as the Vulture wing supporting the assault misunderstood their orders, leaving after just one attack run. As the attack craft began the journey back to base a furious exchange of vox messages finally made them change course towards the battle, but crucial air cover had been lost.

The Stormtroopers of the Librian 1st AirCav fought bravely and well where they could, but the attack was piecemeal and was soon brushed aside by the well prepared Night Lords. Some success was achieved and damage inflicted,including the destruction of a predator and a squad of Chaos terminators.Even so the attack was called off and the surviving aircraft returned to base. Inevitably the accusations began, with many questioning the value of airborne Imperial Guard units.

Tuesday, July 01, 2008

Tyndareous: Spiggot holds Night Lords

Colonel Spiggot had been holding his troops in the city of Slade since his arrival on Tyndareous. Until now the Night Lords had not faced the bulk of his troops in their savage raids, and it was the Tau who had suffered the most at the hands of the traitor Legion. On 2806.008M42 however, this changed, as the Night Lords once again led an attack on the outpost planet. This time, Spiggot's men were in a position to get to the incursion first.

The Librian Grenadiers set up a good defensive position near a complex of ancient ruins to the west of Slade, some five hundred miles south of Flack, which had been devastated by the previous Night Lords' raid. The Librians were determined that the small village of Hesther would not suffer the same fate.

The Chaos Marines soon moved on the ruin complex after consolidating their landing zone. At first it appeared the Chaos forces were intent meerely on facing the Librians in combat, but Colonel Spiggot soon realised that the Night Lords were planning to capture the ruins, for their own secretive purposes. The fact the traitors wanted to possess the ruins was enough for Spiggot to fiercely oppose them.

The battle developed quickly and the Night Lords found themselves coming under unexpected heavy fire and taking havey casualties. Their advance was slowed as their vanguard forces were massacred by Leman Russ fire. The Imperial Hellhounds too played their part and for a while it looked as if Spiggot would be able to turn the Night Lords' flank and expel the traitors from the comples. However as the day wore on the Marines clung tenaciously to their positions and punished any Imperial advance over open ground. Wrecked tanks and Sentinels littered the battlefield.

By evening the battle had petered out and a one kilometre no-mans-land lay over much of the ruins. By dawn the Chaos Marines had left, silently and without warning. They had been stopped, but at a high cost to the Imperium and Spiggot, though having shown the Traitor Marines could be stopped, had not succeeded in routing them. Imperial Guard honour was satisfied, but their losses meant the Tau were now the more numerous force on Tyndareous.

Memnon: Orks overrun Eldar

When Imperial agents reported the presence of Orks on Memnon Imperial High Command were alarmed by the widespread nature of the latest Ork threat. It appeared as if every world in the cluster was at risk from the green tide, and a few in very privileged circles new this also meant Eldar worlds.

The most Hubward systems within the Mabb Nebula had been off limits to all human craft for millenia. Most saw "celestial hazard" printed on their star-charts but those in high places, or at least in privileged places, knew there existed at least five Eldar exodite worlds as well as rumours of a Craftworld. Additionally the Eldar laid claim to several uninhabited "maiden worlds". For thousands of years humanity had known to leave well alone.

Greenskins however have no respect and apparently short memories. In 673M37 an Ork Waagh! originating from the Vork Ork Empire had ravaged the worlds of the Mabb Nebula before disappearing mysteriously. Most thought the Eldar had lured the brutal aliens into a trap, and annihilated them. On 2606.008M42 the appearance of Orks on Memnon was relayed to Imperial HQ. Two days later the Eldar arrived.

Memnon has always been as close as humanity has been allowed to get to the Eldar holdings in the Mabb Nebula, and clearly the appearance of Orks on the world was enough to stir the graceful aliens into action and they soon threw themselves into a savage battle against the Greenskin horde. This time however the Orks had the measure of the Eldar and punished them severely. After a short, savage engagement the Eldar withdrew, leaving the Orks braying in wild celebration.