howdy all have seen some good writers on here and thought i may be able to jump on the band wagon with a part battle report part background story...
He scanned the horizon yet again.The High-Mag bino's revealing incredible detail with every sweep of his eyes but always the same result, sand, spinafex and shard grass tufts, and dust devils.They had been chasing ghosts for weeks. The calls come in for assistance from outlying townships and villages but by the time they arrive there is nothing but smoking debris, bodies and tracks.... sometimes only hours old but always fading to nothing. Almost as if there really were ghosts on the rampage .... but .... he had seen the boot prints and tracks many times before, in another life.
Tyrus Il Morthiem hadn't always been an imperial guardsman, let alone the commander of the 1st Tallearyan Long Range Patrol Group. His mind was drifting back to a time when he did bring battle to all who oppose The Imperium and all Her worlds. To when he wore the power armour of a marine,when his bolter barked death to those who dared to challenge His will .... back several centuries to before that loathesome filth's claw had changed his life irrereversibly,he shuddered at the memory.
"Sh*t, " he thought,"thats the third time today I've drifted off to 'lala' land. This constant empty terrain is starting to drive me to distraction...."
('glint' in the distance)
"Driver, 0475 mils NOW"
He knew he didn't have to yell, as Chalky had seen it too and the Bradley was already leaning with the turn, but it felt good to do SOMETHING at last. Looking over his shoulder he could see the rest of company vehicles matching speed and direction and keeping their "arrowhead" formation with dust clouds billowing for 'clicks' to the rear.
What felt like hours (but in reality was only thirty minutes) the Bradley came to a somewhat dirt encrusted halt as Chalky suddenly realised that the change in front of him was a sizeable drop to what appeared to be a dried salt lake.He had unconsciously dropped the volume of the headset already in expectance of the verbal torrent that normally followed but 'The Boss' was already on the deck beside the vehicle, intently studying the crude but extremely large tracks leading onto th lakebed and coming to a very sudden stop .... then nothing!
The reflection they had seen before had come not from the tracks, but from an enormous shell almost buried out on the flat. Even with not much more than the base visible it was still about as wide as a Bradley, and only the Emperor knew how long.Tyrus careful examination of the shell was brought to a quick end with Sparks' hailing him to a call from Base that needed his immediate attention.
Sitting in the cool of the comm's truck he was put on 'Vidcon' to 'Old Man Matrius', the venerable Commander of the 7th Mechanised Light Horse Battallion.
"Lt Morthiem ... good to see your keeping busy. Just had a very odd report from 2nd Alantrian Ranger Company, currently on a live fire ex in the ruins of Henta at the foothills of the Ranges only a few hours from where SatNav puts your pos. Early yesterday afternoon, one of the scout patrols came upon a recently used campsite which they initially thought to be just recreational, so marked it and moved on without investigation."
Just nodding but thinking 'Nothing strange there at first thought' the Lt waited for the 'Old Man' to continue.
"Late yesterday, the same squad happened to see a bunch of "real weird looking wagons" go up over the the ridge line along the Ole Mud Pot Track, again they initially put it down to some o the local boys n their Mud Boggers just out for a bit of larrakin so again marked it all out, numbers etc,etc..."
Again, not saying anything just listening, Lt started to get an itch at very area on his neck where there was a large but almost invisible jagged scar line.
"Now here is where the odd starts. Last night at 2312 hrs, the standing patrol on Spikeback Ridge stood to after hearing weapon fire on the other side of the ridge line. Immediately following was what sounded like a real dust up between two groups of hotheads with large bore weapons and too much horsepower and liquor to be safe. They remained at Stand To for most of the night and got in only a couple of hours ago, but the real tweaker here is that they had no comm's from just before the ruckus started to only a click or two out of the company position."
At that last comment, Tyrus knew exactly where the Old Man was headed,which was confirmed only seconds later....
"We need to know exactly whats happening up there Lt, and currently your group of lads are the only thing that we know can get in and out pretty quickly ,AND has enough punch to be able to quell any shenanigans that may ... or may not be handed out. With all this business thats been popping up around that area lately we may just be able to get to the cause and hopefully end it."
"Aye Sir, the boys n I be happy to poke our collective noses in up there and maybe even break a few if need be. They're a good bunch of lads and could do with a bit of a 'donny' to ease the tension of late."
"By the way Tyrus, even I have a funny feeling about this, so get in, get the info we want and get out ..."
"Aye Sir, will do. Get in, get the eyeball n get out ... understood Commander" as he saluted the screen.
"Lt Morthiem .... just so you understand... once you have 'the eyeball' as you eloquently put it, GET OUT!! Thats an order...."The screen faded to black as Commander Matruis returned the salute.
Tyrus sat for a second as the words "get in, get the eyeball and get out" seemed to bounce in his head. Sparks was just about to open his mouth when Tyrus stood,opened the rear door and returned to the searing desert glare.
"Everyone in, O Group NOW"
Within a minute all but the sentries were crowded in an orderly fashion at the rear of the Lt's Bradley.
"OK lads , the Old Man has just been on the phone and we're off to a 'job'.Info is a bit on thehazy side but it sounds like some of the local yokels have been unloading up near Spikeback Ridge. As it so happens No. 2 Rangers also happens to be there on a live fire ex. I know , I know. why they haven't closed off the range is beyond me but from the sound of things these boys probably wouldn't take much head in being told to 'No Go' in their own backyard so the Boss wants us to go and ummmm(scrarching his chin and looking up) ...Be REAL polite if'n y'all catch muh meenin!" said with all the drawl Lt could put on.
The next half hour was spent with everyone taking notes on who was where, had what and what to do if it all went tail up. Hopefully a little more detail would be shed on reaching 2 Coy's location in several hours time.
"OK lads, thats it. Time is 1330 hrs on my mark ..... 5 ..........2...1...MARK".
"Mount up, move out and commence comm's silence at 1600. Rebrief once we're in 2's AO."
Several hours and seemingly endless clicks later, comm's had been quiet so 'comm's silence' didn't make any noticable impact. The company hit the base at Henta Range at 1635 hrs slowing only to register with the range sentries and continued at speed so as not to run out of daylight before hitting 2's position and getting set for the night. The road was old but still in fair condition and easy for the vehicles to negotiate. 1705 saw Tyrus pulling into the southern outskirts of Hedrala.
Hedrala, a centuries old mining city that once prosperous, was now only ruins following a major uprising between the company employees and contractors about 130 yrs previous. The city was essentially destroyed and only used by the armed forces on exercise for the last 5 decades. The second Alantrian had moved into the city late that morning in preparation to the final stages of the exercise.
Tyrus company was holding at the rear of 2's Hq with engines running while Lt was meeting with the Hq unit.
"Lt Tyrus, heard you were headed this way", a voice from further back in the tent. "Good to meet you, I'm James Robert MacGrath, but the lads call me 'Jimbob'" said a young but swarthy looking lieutentant moving to shake hands. Moving to the green lit 'ops board' and gesturing to various positions and icons lit up, "The bombardment began as planned but quarter of an hour into it, figures were seen to be moving through the ruins immediately to the position front. The scouts were sent to get them out of the danger area as quick as possible and hopefully without casualties. The squad had just gone from visual when shooting erupted from their general direction. One of the snipers watched as one of the younger lads came limping over the top of the rubble piles. Turning to return fire, he was literally torn apart by gunshots from further in the ruins. Through their scopes the snipers were able to observe what they thought were just humans, but moving out into th light revealed themselves to be snotlings and what they think are ork..."
Tyrus drew a sharp breath and hissed,"ORKS....... are you sure ?? What the in chaos teeth could that green pus want here!"
Lt Jimbob scrathed his head in thought,"Yes they are orks. Even checked myself as I had the same reaction as you did, but I can definitly say what I saw were orks. What they want is anyones guess. As far as we know the mines have been closed off and were all bt done with when the riots broke out. We don't even have a confirmed number of the scum to give you, all we can confirm is that we have at least a 'boyz mob' holed up in the ruins directly to our front. The heavy lads have been exchanging intermittent potshots with them since they showed themselves."
"What about other support in the area? You've mentioned arty already, I was just wondering how much and where?" Lt Tyrus asked.
"Just getting to it." Lt Jimbob said as he expanded the map to show the surrounding hills and ruins complete."Here in the southeast corner is no.2 Towed Battery and in the southwest is no.3. Both units from 4 Field Regiment out in the Riverine Agri belt. Currently 2 is just short of their new posi, had some mechanical trouble with the tractors so they're doing the best they can. Since we're smack in the middle of things I've deployed 7 and 8 self propelled batteries half way between us and the flanks so they have max. field of fire and can hopefully cover the majority of the city. At the western edge of the outskirts and through the base of Spineback a squad of Salamanda's from 1/4 Cav have spread out to let us know if they try to send anything down the hills. The snipers have swung round to the west and holed up in an old office building .... or whats left of it. Their sergeant 'Brazza' told me "It was on a hunch." so i let him run with it. Hopefully it may give us some early warning if there is someone sneaking around on the left flank. Lastly we're expecting a fire team of troopers from 537 Airwing in the next 15 mins. Once here we'll see what happens and hopefully be able to drop them and a heap of fire on top of any hotspot that may or may not turn up."
Just at then a corporal handed a sig to Jimbob who looked up saying" A spot of sunshine I hope, seems like a fli...."words trailing off as the radio's suddenly went bezerk with chatter and gunfire could be heard from comm's and outside.
"Sir, snipers just spotted a heap of jumpers come straight out of the ruins to their front." a young private holding his headset on as if trying to close off other noise.
"Tell em 'Fire at opportunty presents'"
Lt Jimbob picked up a headset and spoke" All units in Dusty Groto, condition is red, hostilities commenced. Fire at 'opportunity presents'. Take care and may The Emperor guide you."
"Looks like the Green Bast*^ds want to make tod...Hang on....."Jimbob looking troubled...
"Brazza just spotted a heap of ork armour rolling down the western edge of town and i just heard a flight of fighters fly over him. Sam, let those arty boys know they got company on its way, and for gods sake find out if 2 Batt are in position yet."
Having seen this scene played out a hundred times before,Tyrus stayed in earshot but out of the way as the 'Ops CP' rapidly became an area of urgent activity. The comm's operators were desperatly trying to take notes on what was happening and it became rapidly clear that things were going badly for someone in the western area...
The next 5 minutes he watched as Jimbob issued orders to operators calmly but the knuckles of his hand holding several sig reports became white as the sig's passed on sitrep after sitrep. He finally walked over to the Op's board where he saw the sniper icon had disappeared completely and was joined by Jimbob after a few moments.
Tyrus spoke first,"Helluva day it's turned into.Whats the situation?"
"That's an understatement and it's all turned purple. 2 Battery were caght as they were getting the guns into firing position so we lost a whole crew,gun and tractor to armour there. 8 SPG was hit by the fighters as they came throught the west flank. Again lost a gun but the other 2 are holding."Jimbob was looking intently at the Op's board,"The worst part is Brazza and his boys were taken out. those jumpers he saw turned out to be a full squad 'Stormboyz'. Jimmy over there heard the lot, right up when Brazza was executed by the merciless pigs.Not what i wanted one of the newbies to be getting on their first assignment. Mind you the eastern flank seems to have had better luck. 3 Batt shot down 2 of the enemy fliers as they passed overhead. 7 SPG has been shaken a bit but they're on the ball as we speak, and the 1/4 Cav boys have fired on enemy armour they spotted moving through one of the valleys,so thats temporarily stopped them."
No sooner had Jimbob finished than the faint whistle of large shells overhead, then the deep rumble of impact felt just before several explosions were heard not too distantly.
Tyrus "I take it thats 7 being 'on the ball'?"
Jimbob "Yeh, one the heavy lads passed on some co-ordinates through here after he saw snot moving around in front of em. I just hope a few caught a bad case of shrapnel!"
"Well Wtih you there Jimbob, now what about us?"
"From what Brigade had told me bfore you got here, you were expcting a fight anyway so you came ready. The plan was for you to move through at speed and 'have a look', then get back here so we could work out what's out there and push through,or consolidate and wait for reinforcements. There's an old factorium on the far edge of the city. Its in ruins but its big with lots of cover and enough room for your men and vehicles. Across the road is an old apartment thats lost a side but its high and a good recce point. Both are here," said Jimbob pointing to the high side of the ops board,"but its right through the middle and we have no idea what else they may have. Its far from ideal but if it works we may just be able to split it all up and start to work on them piece by piece."
"Yep it sucks all right, and if it turns to pot our collective asses will be swingin in breeze. But we won't know til we try. Let you know when we get there." Tyrus replied and turned to the door.
"Tyrus,may the the Emperor guide you," called Jimbob,saluting as Tyrus reached the entrance and turned around."and good hunting!"
Returning the salute Tyrus replied, "May the Emperor guide you Jimbob. Good luck!"
Striding to his Bradley,he ehld out his hand to catch his headset that was thrown from the drivers hatch by the watchful Chalky.
"Ok you lot here it is. We have to get to the far edge of town,set up shop and make sure that slime cannot meet up. while we're there we may come under the odd shower or two of fire from orks. Yes you heard me right those rednecks are orks. Smelly ugly bast*^ds,but they are hard buggers and like big guns."
Vaulting up onto the front of IFV he didn't skip a word just kept on speaking as he dropped into th top hatch"Keep your eyes open and your fingers on the triggers. Once we're clear of these boys position any thing that moves from here ...'Nail it'and make sure it damn well stays 'Nailed'. Once into postion all crews debus and set up firing points 'pronto'. Thats it lads .... move out ... battle speed ... standard formation."
Last edited by roomandu on Sat May 22, 2010 8:08 pm, edited 5 times in total.