“Standby for Watch Captain Vibius” the vox rating intoned and a series of connections chimes followed. The storm was clearing and what passed for noon on Nytt Hopp would come in thirteen minutes. The remaining fragments of the Stigmartus forces were forced back. Claudius noted that with the Stigmartus troops’ bloodlust there were very few retreating forces. Killteam Claudius had bought each meter of this icy ground with five times as many heretic warriors’ corpses.
“Vibius here…” came the Watch Captain in his smooth and preternaturally calm voice. Claudius snapped to and strode to the top of an ice rise.
“Squad leader here, sir. We are at grid V12. We are within ten meters of the enemy indirect fire zone. Approximately seventy meters to primary objective. No casualties, minor damage taken. Advise” Claudius responded clearly and concisely. Yarika cleared three fleeing Stigmartus as they came across his vision. Claudius barely registered the three muffled thuds of the apothecary’s custom made Boltrifle.
“Parameters have changed Brother Claudius. The Stigmartus fleet has received reinforcements from the Pyre warband. The enemy’s numbers are now overwhelming. We have two hours until the enemy ’s spears come to battle. And in three hours our forces will reach zero barrier to make Warp and quit the Nytt Hopp system” Watch Captain Kail Vibius explained. Data stream passed Claudius’ eyes as the Ebon Zealot shared its information. Within a second Claudius had the lay of the situation and understood how the difficulty had increased.
“Your orders stand Brother Claudius. You have gained a strict time table and an entirely new level of mission priority. Killteam Claudius must reach the U13 objective, designate ‘Tower of Skulls’ and destroy it. The killteam must continue to grid Q14. There Inquisitorial Mandate, designate ’Sa’laah’, must be completed” Vibius pauses for a few seconds.
“Brother Claudius, within three hours your killteam must: clear thirty to fifty meters of emplacement fire, assault an entrenched heavy weapon and armour position, kill the heretic general and his elite forces, level the Chaos site, and then cover twelve kilometers to a remote grid point. Once there Inquisitorial elements will contact the killteam” Vibius continued but his tone changed and become softer.
“Brother, if your killteam can secure Q14 for the Inquisition, I have been given assurances of aid from both Inquisitorial forces and some rogue traders. Nytt Hopp is important to this sector of the salient. If you and your killteam can get the Inquisition their scrap of intrigue on that icy rock, I will drive these heretics from the system with what the Inquisition gives me. Can we do this Brother? To see you fell the archtraitor and then drive a heretic armada from space in the name of the primarch and the Emperor would be the stuff of legend. Is this that day Brother Claudius?” Watch Captain Kail Vibius finished with true confidence.