Prologue III – The Mantis Warriors

+++ Jorus System +++ 
+++ System’s Oort cloud region +++
+++ Strike Cruiser’s “Venomous” command bridge +++

Seven figures clad in power armour and one in terminator armour all in Mantis Warriors livery stood around strategic table with hololithic representation of Jorus System. Death Warden Galfridus called a meeting of company commanders before reaching Jorus system, just after they received the distress call from planet Baalimm. Company commander Captain Tagon Ortuga didn’t hesitate to commit to Jorus system investigation even though some company members pointed out that strike force should first replenish the supplies. Strongest plea came from company’s chief Techmarine Yagnar – Master of the Forge of “Devourer” battle barge.

Captain Ortuga dismissed the pleas for resupply much to satisfaction of Death Warden. Now that the matter was not any more debatable since they already were in the system, the plan of actions to be taken was about to be agreed upon. 

– “What we know so far is that our brothers from Guardians of Celeres Chapter were attacked by insurrectionists. There is also talk of traitor within the ranks of the Guardians that led the insurrectionists and prepared a trap that has seen most of the Astartes forces on the ground of Baalimm brutally slaughtered. Planet Baalimm is a Hive world that serves as recruitment world for Chapter which means its importance is unquestionable.” Captain Ortuga paused and awaited replies from his officers.

– “What we do not know is the exact troop disposition of the enemy and their strength. So far we may speculate that Imperial Guard regiments and planetary defence forces are all committed to the treachery. This leaves us with probable troop disposition of six Mechanized infantry regiments of Imperial Guard and two regiments of planetary defence forces.” Added veteran sergeant Jehol clad in terminator armour. His booming voice echoed in the chamber even though he wore no helmet.

– “This pests will be dealt with quickly and mercilessly, although we cannot afford to wipe out entire population of the planet since our brothers of the Guardians of Celeres find the genestock of its population worthy for recruitment. This means we should eradicate the enemy while trying to avoid any collateral damage to the planetary population.” Pointed out Chief Apothecary Hankin.

– “Initial scans of the system show that we may encounter void opposition from 5 system monitor ships, yet I would not call it anything more than a nuisance. But then again we do not know if the Jorus fleet also committed to the insurrection.” Spoke veteran sergeant Corymbus commander of vanguard cruiser “Sword of Zagol”.

– “That is a thing to consider, shall we strike with high prejudice or should we hail them first. Then there is the matter of other planets that are home to smaller human populations and may or may not be also infested with the insurrectionists influence” Voiced sergeant Anfroy

– “Yes we need to consider that, but for now we assume that entire system has fallen into the claws of treachery. We should…” Captain Ortuga never finished the sentence due to incoming hail from the flagship of Mantis Warriors gathered fleet – the “Devourer”.

– “Captain, this is Branwen forgive me the interruption of war council, but there is something that demands your attention.”

– “Speak sergeant” 

– “Our long range scanners and navigators are registering warp translation of significant size that will take place in a matter of hours” 

– “Who do we expect?” Asked veteran sergeant Jehol, “More traitors?”

– “No, sir we are receiving signatures of broadcasted messages preceding the incoming fleet arrival”

– “What is the meaning of them”

– “It is a looped warning that says: <Be ready for the wrath of Sons of Sanguinus> therefore I am guessing we can expect Blood Angels Chapter or their successors in system within several hours”

-“Very well sergeant, thank you for that”

– “At your service Sir, Branwen out”

Captain Ortuga looked around on the gathered Astartes and said after short while:

– “Looks like we have to postpone our war council since there will be need to coordinate our actions with our cousins from Baal. Yet meanwhile sergeant Corymbus shall take “Sword of Zagol” and two destroyers of your choosing and scout ahead. Shall you encounter and hostilities from system fleet, crush them with all your strength, otherwise do not engage them. We will join you shortly, but until then maintain high anchor above the Saint Ahra. Also try to establish communication with Ecclesiarchy on the planet surface since as far as our information goes, this planet is committed to worshipping Saint Ahra which suggest clergy presence and they may be a source of valuable intel.”

– “As you command Sir” Veteran Sergeant Corymbus bowed his head and left the meeting in order to get back on his ship.

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