The Chronicles Of Soloss
DEAD – Killed in action on Perdition IV
The Psykers of LaFeyette’s Gorge
The supply vessel dropped me at LaFeyette’s Gorge, an intriguing planet to say the least, with the Hives of the city built into vast Canyons scarring the surface of the entire world (see addendum for LaFeyette’s Gorge). On disembarking I stared across the vast plains as the sun sat low in the sky. Then I stared down, and was truly awed by the propeller covered sides of the canyon, that seemed to stretch for miles both in length and depth. Making my way into the hive I walked amongst the populous, stopping every so often to look for materials with which to craft the dual bladed glave I planned to craft in the name of my God Emperor.
It was late in the evening, and although it is rare to find areas in hives that actually sleep, there was an alleyway that seemed to be a lot quieter. It was also obvious to me that passers-by were ignoring the turning onto this street. My suspicions were soon confirmed, and it was my training that was telling me this was out of place. As I stepped into the alley I suddenly felt as if I were home. A positive feeling of nostalgia washed over me, as I swear that the scent currently filling my nostrils were the Oglev trees that grew not far from where I spent much of my early years. But there were no trees here, this was an arid hive world. Tapping into Psyniscience I could see the street was leaving a very clear Psychic emanation, and I suspected the attractive smell made it very clear a Psyker was welcome here. Had I been your average citizen I would imagine that the pleasant smell of Oglev pollen, would be something more akin to something an Orc leaves behind after a heavy meal.
I walked to towards the archway where the aura was strongest. There in the half light sat by a small fire, were two cloaked figures. One raised their head toward me, and where his eyes would have been had I been able to seem them under the cowl, my gaze was met with two small glowing orbs, as if the figure’s eyes had been replaced with a pair of stars.
‘ I would sit and pray with you brothers, if there is room by the fire.’
‘ Brother ? There are not many who would use such a term with us on first sight. But then you are a singular fellow indeed if the repugnant smell of rotting Orc has not made you run for the latrine in nauseous disgust.’
‘ I do not smell Orc anything out here.‘ I said moving slowly closer
‘ Indeed ? ‘ said the other quizzically.
‘ On the contrary, I am reminded of home.’
‘ Home you say ? Then you may sit with us…Brother.’
“So are you lost in the storm ?”
“Not the weather boy! The Warp. You are lost….and indecisive Psykers are no use to anyone.”
I didn’t reply immediately. Being read so quickly was a strange feeling. I’m used to this going the other way, using my abilities to try and throw people into showing fear, hesitation, anger, some emotional response I can use to pry out information, or make them an easier target.. But I knew in the blink of an EYE, that my two contemporaries were going to assist in picking my direction.
I was a psyker – And I wasn’t ready to admit it – not on the inside – too busy trying to pretend I’m still human. I’m something else. A sheathed weapon, waiting impatiently to be wielded by my Emperor.
Over the next few days I was shown my options. It was my blind friend who most captured my attention. Biomancy was all well and good, but I just didn’t like the idea of inciting some terrible backlash in the warp whilst in the middle of twisting bone and sinew…..my bone and sinew….what if it were permanent! But the DIVINATION was fascinating. I’d already begun to open my own eyes to it’s possibilities. The PSYNISCIENCE, in moments of utter CLARITY, could show me the intentions of an individual, flaring up their AURAS like the celebratory lights of Holy Terra, painting their inner selves with indelible guilt. But DIVINATION seemed to be so much more – given the right training and dedication I would eventually be able to touch objects, locate their origins, be shown their uses, and the people that wield them. The potential for this during my official investigations alone would no longer limit me to just instinct. I could find people that don’t want to be found….and that thought brought a smile to my face.
He went to show me other abilities – He bade me train with a glave while telling me of the other uses of Divination. The glave is an extraordinary weapon, a natural progenitor of the staff, but both ends bladed. Some variants are single bladed, where as a third option can be made by crafting a scabbard for one or both ends.
“Precognition brother, precognition – makes you very hard to kill on the battle field. There are evasive abilities that tie directly into your instincts, and your opponents’.” He smiled. Think of your own reaction when someone surprises you with a tap on the shoulder. Imagine reacting the same sensation, but while your opponent is still 20ft away. This way he will go to strike, but you will already be gone. It is the same with offense, both with bullet or blade. You will start to find little need for carrying extraneous ammunition. Sometimes one is enough.”
He outstretched his left hand while throwing his sword, end first, a few inches into the ground, where it stuck fast with a reverberating thud.
I passed him my sidearm. Bear in mind that this one will work as long as I know where it is….even if it’s off the horizon. He seemed to whisper to the gun, followed by the sharp exclamation of,
“ Flashing beacon, north west antennae! “ raised the gun in that direction, while still staring at me, squinted, and fired.
The beacon shattered, sending a small shower of sparks and glass towards the depths below us.
“ When those shots are fired – they’re unavoidable. “
“ Can I train here ? “
“No, we would have you here only once you had been with the Temple for 15 years, with the experience to show for it. But there are places in the universe for you to train. I will provide you with a list of suitable ones of course, but I have a request in return.”
“ Is this why you’ve been so free with the information ?”
“ Partly, but given the nature of my abilities, do you really think I am so surprised to see you here ? ”
“ Okay, you knew I was coming, and there is something you want me to do ? “
“ Something I can only give another Psyker. Only a Psyker would be trusted, only a Psyker would know the importance, and seeing as I have put you on your path for the future, I need you to retrieve something from my past….I need you to retrieve my eyes.”
My expression dropped. His eyes!?
“ They were taken from me years ago, but my possessor has them to this day, goading me across the warp, playing tricks on my sight. It’s why I get given covert missions on backwater worlds. I was denied being in the thick of battle because a brother turned on me and made me a liability.”
“ A brother ? “
“ We had trained together, gone through the harrowing within the black ships. Both been blessed by the emperor at the same time. But that was where our similarities ended. Before we had finished I lost my sight. Officially the record shows that the stress of the forces being exerted onto me during my ‘training’ locked my brain into Divination, giving me little choice in my discipline, but the trauma of this was so powerful that the warp spilled out of my sockets, and seared my eyes beyond all recognition. What actually happened……what actually happened WAS THE BASTARD STOLE MY EYES! We sparred, we always did, but I had not seen that sparring on his part was genuine rivalry. Already I’d shown my gift with my sight. He wanted to outwit my reactions, trick me, try to block me, but every time I’d evade at the last minute. Over the years this fed on him, he would never beat my reactions. But then again I could never compete with his telekinetics, but I didn’t want to. There are not enough of the strong ones in the world, too many of us get swallowed up, and those that withstand all that black can throw at us should prevail. But no, some prevail like him, knowing their awesome potential all too well, to the point they find it hard to disguise. As you probably know there are many rooms within the ships, some of them are off limits. Some of them are have been off limits for so long, they’ve been forgotten. Over the years, our initial friendship had started by combining our abilities to break into some of the restricted areas, and trying not to get caught. If you were caught, they’d just throw you back into one the ‘chairs.’
The day I lost my eyes, was the last time we sparred…fought. In the midst of the flurry he threw down a flashbang, I zoned out for a couple of seconds, trying my best to try and predict incoming blows. Instead, in one fluid move he obviously grabs one of the force nemesis weapons, swings, where it connects with my temple. I collapse. He then stands over me, pressing my head down with the staff, and flicks the switch. When I next awoke, I was in the infirmary, my eyes were cybernetic, and my rival was no longer on the ship. It took 6 months to find out what happened.
A Prisoner in my own temple…..the lunacy of it! There’s nothing wrong with
me…..but of course my opposition just say that’s my way of denial. They’re
divinators like myself, infinitely more powerful. But apparently I have a chance out of
this situation…The situation. I’m me, here, now, newly promoted officer within the
Inquisition, and I am under lock and key, with my superior staring down his nose at
me, a specially flown in ‘acquaintance’ of his with ‘fire’ in his eyes, and no doubt in
that lance he hold at his side. You see I have a problem, but my abilities and success
in my tasks have staid a ‘quick’ solution to all this. Fortunately for me, my
accomplishments have brought honour to the Temple, and my brothers are not as
quick to execute one of their own if they can help it. Psykers aren’t Guard. We don’t
need a Commissar constantly pointing a gun at our heads in case we turn tail at the
first sign of being overpowered. For the Lords of the Tempus Occularis, there is a
different ideology. We go into our missions with our fingers poised on the
possibilities of outcome, and we do best for our comrades as we can, trying to find
the way to succeed for the Emperor. This I grant you is not common in Divinators.
Many seclude themselves, away from others, seeking solace away from others,
where the many webs of what come may is too much of a burden. These individuals
still function, but tend to be private advisors on a one to one level, with senior battle
masters, tacticians, and overlords. Some try to turn inwards, and focus their abilities
on themselves, so their predictions are confined purely to their own involvement in a
situation, meaning they have mastered outside divinatory chatter to stop any
impediment to their character. There are of course those that go insane, some at the
beginning, others as their power grows. Taints of forbidden sight, Corrupted Augurs,
and worst of all, the Warp Prisms who are the negative conduits for everything that
channels through them, with sometimes such immense abandon, they cause the
deaths of hundreds of their own. All of it in the blind hope that it takes them with it.
Many of these end up in Chaos’s vast maw, but once there, many do not survive,
seen as an unstable weapon for the damned to let loose amongst the righteous.
Imagine seeing your own death, but allowing it to twist you in such a way that you
do everything you can to bring it about, rather than just accepting it for what it is.
Well, it makes sense to me.
We all go to the Emperor in the end….I know this…..but I will not go until I know
I’ve a story to tell him, with a good ending, with my duty done.
So why do I find myself surprised at the fate that awaits me….? ‘Didn’t you see
this coming ? ‘ I hear you ask. No, I’ve been careless, I have a wound, and it goes
deeper than just flesh. As my sun rises and falls there are visible black spots on
the surface, and they’ve reached a point to cause concern. Over the last decade or
so I have grown more accustomed to my abilities, taken confidence in Inquisitorial
function, but what I didn’t always notice, was that every time I used the phenomena,
a small piece of me was being consumed. It’s not that I wasn’t aware of this
happening, it’s just an acceptance, or maybe a denial, but your mind puts it to one
side, and you get on with the Task at hand. Clearly I’ve been in denial a little too
The last encounter left me broken, but I lived….duty still not done. Once again
Thaddius saved us from a situation almost bereft of hope. Those things came up out
of the ground and slaughtered everything. Somehow I survived a direct assault of
this six limbed beast, and the gashes on the left hemisphere of my skull show how
close I came. In this wounded state I attempted to help my comrades, I helped, but
I brought forth a shadow that hit all of us. I shouldn’t have attempted it, but I
couldn’t lie there and do nothing, waiting to die. I don’t remember a lot in the
interim, the next thing I knew I was in a medical bay. The first time I saw those
gashes across my head, I knew there would be questions. But, I needed gain
strength from it as well. And maybe this needed to happen. This wasn’t just a
lesson, that would in the short term, teach me humility on some new level or any of
that bullshit. My instincts told me there would be repercussions. There was another
niggling feeling. The mission itself. My friends and I had once again been put very
much in harms way. This was starting to look deliberate, this was starting to look
like someone wanted us to die on a mission. If we were a threat, a direct, ‘ make
them disappear’ operation would be too obvious, possibly a last response because if
it could be done that easily, it would have already happened. Instead we keep
almost dying against insurmountable odds. Not the sort of jobs regularly issued to
four investigators. There had also been the ‘garbled’ or ‘lost’ communication excuse.
On the last two missions. I knew this couldn’t be solved now, and certainly not
quickly. But what needed to be done is for our erstwhile antagonist needed to be
wrong footed somehow. What would help is if they felt they were being watched.
That way they have to keep looking over their shoulder as well as machinating
against Cephras. So what we need is an Inquisitorial Adept, who can start the ball
rolling, by drawing up the paper trail from Cephras to the communiqué destinations.
The first one would be a simple request, as if we’re double checking something to
increase accuracy in our reports. That should appeal to their sense of procedure.
And so before I left for the Temple, a request was sent for assistance in pinpointing
the times when our communications were sent and received, just so the timelines of
the reports could be aligned.
I entered the antechamber of the Temple. My Lord, Primaris Zarkov, looked up from
his conversations with Remus Vlathorian and Vycar Sinidex, stared at me for not
more than four seconds, and said simply
‘Your shadow…is too long my friend’
His eyes glowed briefly, and I blacked out, slumped to the floor. The next thing I
know is I’m in a chair, my head is caked in blood and ink, where fresh tattooing now
adorned my scalp following the pattern of my recent wounds from the field.
It was explained to me that there were levels growing in me that needed to be
curbed, and the fact my head wounds weren’t going to help if left unchecked.
But there was a chance for redemption. The tattoos were binding glyphs, to add
protection to my mind, and to make sure my abilities stay within me, to avert psykic
overspill. They also added direction when it came to using my Divinatory nature,
meaning that with increased experience I wouldn’t see them as just scars, but as
part of me, three curved spears, running across my head. The beast that caused
them wouldn’t be a source of fear, it had made me focus! But in order to complete
the ritual, solid bindings were needed for the spearheads, bindings that had to be
made from a very rare ore, known as Omnisium. To show my worthiness, to tame
my shadow, to move forward, I would have to take the Endless walk, a venture
into the icey wastes to a ruined Chapel, that now lies toppled by a shifting glacier.
Rumour has it that an earthquake centuries ago brought up with it spires of the rock
beneath, toppling the Chapel, but in the process housing fresh veins of Omnisium.
If I reach the Chapel, and If I break the ore, then I can return to my brothers
renewed….then I can continue my story.