The Black Templar’s bolt pistol fired. But the round glanced off Inquisitor Huron’s pultron – it must have hit at a shallow angle not to have detonated. The Inquisitor could do no more than bring up his flamer to ward off the incoming chainsword. The chainsword slid down the flamer’s pipes and bit into the promethium reservoir rather than the inquisitor’s hand; promethium sprayed back all over the Templar. Inquisitor Huron twisted at the waist and made an undercut jab with his other arm, triggering the lightening claw. He did not hit the Templar, but the charge arced across.
The Black Templar burst into flame and jumped back, allowing the Inquisitor to also step backwards. The Inquisitor’s Askarii and the remaining Kreigsmen took their chance and the last Black Templar went down in hail of stubber and las fire.
Silence descended. Inquisitor Huron jettisoned the damaged tank and looked around; A Black Templar force had quite clearly attacked the Krieg position from the direction of the enemy. Broken Rhinos and Land Raiders sat smoking at jaunty angles across the blasted landscape in front of them. Black Templers, led by the Sword Brethren from the Land Raider lay dead, scattered like confetti. Directly around where he was standing, the last of the Black Templar’s desperate charge had reached the Krieg lines. He had arrived, responding to a call for assistance to find a fight in the balance.
If the Kreig position had not been covered by so many crew served weapons, it would not have been the same outcome. Inquisitor Huron had been listening to the vox net. The calm measured delivery of the Death Korps vox-ops had been all he heard. The Black Templars had not been using any of 72AGs codes or frequencies and his logics had picked up nothing on any of the usual Space Marine channels. He could only surmise that the Krieg mortar barrage had smashed all of the vox apparatus off of the Black Templar vehicles. He knew that the Lostwithial’s Thunderhawks were constantly criss-crossing the planet and its own augaurs were the equal of anything else in orbit. If he was to do anything it would have to be soon. . .
“Report !” He roared his demand across the field of battle.
A Krieg SNCO appeared in front of him and saluted. “Watchmaster Nachtflake, Number six heavy mortar Battery, 262 Line Regiment, Lord.”
“Begin.” The Inquisitor ordered.
“The armoured formation entered our free fire zone from the south, at a distance of 6.7 Kloms at 04:55 hours local. Kaptain Engel ordered the engagement at 04:59, the formation was bracketed and subjected to a twelve round barrage…”
“What with ?” Interjected the Inquisitor.
“Heavy Mortars, Lord.”
“The formation turned directly towards us and spread to a tactically better disposition , but never once halted or attempted to communicate with us. We took two missile strikes, one hit number five mortar and one impacted in dead ground nearby. At 05:15 we reacquired the target at 5.8 kloms and engaged again. And again at 05:34 at 5.2 kloms. There were another three barrages of twelve rounds until the came inside 3 kloms at 06:18. We could now see that there were infantry riding on their remaining vehicles and Kaptain Engel ordered the Quad Gun battery to our left to fire. The Infantry’s las and auto cannons were now also in range and opened fire. Their Land Raider’s las cannons fired into our positions, causing casualties amongst the crew served weapons positions.
Kaptain Engel put out the call for assistance at 06:22. Their last Land Raider was stopped at 305 meters by your Land Raider at 06:28. Kaptain Engel and Lieutenant Muller, the infantry commander, were slain by the Black Templars. The Templars are being checked now and casualty figures will be compiled.”
One of the Askarii came back with a data slate removed from the wrecked Land Raider. He handed it to the Inquisitor who studied it for what seemed like a long time. He scrolled down until he found something he was obviously looking for. His lip curled slightly. “Hallas Blingnor, I might have known that you would be holding their leash.” He looked up. To his attendant Askarii he said “Contact our agents in orbit. All augur records of this location for the last six hours are to be seized, sealed and delivered to the Corinthian Summer. Anyone demanding to see them is to be arrested.”
He turned to Watchmaster Nachtflake. "Pull your forces back out of this place, on my orders. The enemy is too strong for you to contain here. When you are far enough away, the Korps is to blast this place with its artillery reserve and all available air assets. Do you understand ?”
“Yes Lord. Is there a code I should use ?”
“No, you have been ordered by Inquisitor Huron, that is enough.”
The Kreigsman turned to carry out the Inquisitors orders. Huron called him back “Watchmaster, what happened here ?” There was a long pause before the answer came. “There was significant contact seven or eight kloms to our front and then an hour later we were attacked by who ever had wiped out the space marines. So we called in the big guns.” Huron nodded, Watchmaster Nachtfalke saluted again and turned back to his duties.