Reth surveyed the battle field, his electronic monocle scanning the scene before him. He watched as a squad of Blood Ravens marched cautiously through the low undergrowth, less than 100 metres from his vantage point. Reth shouldered his Sniper Rifle, and looked down the scope towards the Space Marines. With the night vision optics, he could pick out small, reptilian shapes snaking through the bushes, underneath the soldiers' field of vision. This was the price a mercenary had to pay. Letting fellow humans take the fall. Reth heard Skor, his Ork companion crouch down beside him. "What 'ave yer got?" he asked, in his strange accent. "Blood Angels" Reth replied, without moving his eye from the scope. "And a swarm of 'Nids heading towards them." Skor half laughed, but it was more of a throaty grunt. "Genocidal bastards," he muttered, "Let 'em die." Reth looked away from the scope to glare at the Ork. "My job was to find the squad leader. Preferably alive, and I'm the only one stopping the Imperium from putting a shot through your skull, so you'd better help me." Skor grunted, and Reth returned to looking through the rifle scope. The squad had passed by his vantage point now, and were reaching the doors to a large bastion, camouflaged in the jungle. The Tyranids were still stalking them, and Reth could now see the large, ominous figure of a Carnifex, walking slowly through the larger trees. A huge flood light suddenly flicked on, illuminating the undergrowth that Reth was observing. "Open Fire!" someone yelled, and the air was suddenly filled with the deafening roar of a Heavy Bolter. The undergrowth shook and shredded, and shrill squeals of panic and surprise rose from the dying aliens. The Blood Ravens charged forwards as the firing stopped, drawing their own pistols and revving Chain swords. The surviving Tyranids jumped up to meet the attackers and Reth saw the Carnifex come crashing out into the open. The monster bellowed, and began to swing its huge claws towards the humans. "That's our cue mate" Reth said, flicking the safety on his rifle to off. He stood up, and sighted towards a Genestealer, -a four armed bastard of an animal- and fired. The alien disappeared into the undergrowth. Reth bolted a new round, and took aim again. Skor drew his axe and pistol, cocked the gun, and jumped off the cliff, landing heavily on the dirt below him. He sprinted towards the alien swarm, axe raised and pistol firing blindly. With a loud scream of; "Waaagh!" he brought the axe down on the skull of a Hormagaunt. Reth fired again, hitting a lumbering Warrior in the side. It screeched, and turned to look at him, before launching a glowing liquid from the large, organic cannon connected to the creatures' arms. Reth fell prone, and felt the substance glance over his head, striking the rock face behind him. He quickly rose to his knees and scoped on the aliens head. He pulled the trigger, and nothing happened. "Shit!" he cursed, and bolted rapidly, then took aim at the Warrior again. He fired, and this time, the shot hit the creature in the snout, blasting a large chunk of skull and chitin backwards from its head. It stood there for about a second, the dropped to the ground. Reth quickly slotted a new mag into his rifle, and then dropped down into the fray. He could hear automatic weapons fire, and Skor repeatedly screaming somewhere. Reth drew his own chainsaw, and ripped the ignition chord. The engine farted lazily, and then roared into life, teeth spinning. He slung the rifle over his back, and, standing up, he began to survey the carnage. The Blood Ravens were firing at the Carnifex. It seemed to be the only Tyranid left alive now. Skor came running up to Reth, his body and armour soaked in the sickly yellow ichor of the aliens. "Carnifex is tearin' 'em apart" he gasped, his breath short and rapid. "You better step in, or you ain't gonna have nobody to take home." Reth nodded, and revved the chainsaw. "Let's go" He sprinted towards the Carnifex, his monocle assessing the situation. As he drew close, the beast shoved a huge, scythe-like claw straight through the stomach of a Space Marine, lifting him up and tossing the corpse away, much like a child would discard an unwanted toy. His comrades began to retreat, blind firing Bolt Pistols and Plasma weapons. The Tyranid was taking no notice, instead it lumbered forwards, swing its huge claws, and roaring. There were three marines left now, two infantry, and the Squad leader. Reth assumed this was the man he was looking for. As they drew the Carnifex closer to the gate of the bastion, the Heavy Bolter opened up again, spraying the creature with bullets. Large pockmarks appeared in its thick armour, and some began to bleed. The alien threw back its head and bellowed, then looked at the offending turret. It screeched loudly, and a small group of 'something' flew through the air towards the turret. They connected, and Reth heard the agonizing scream of the gunner, as Flesh Borers tore him to pieces. The Carnifex turned its attention back to the Space Marines. It swung a talon towards one, and sliced him in half, the top part of his body dropping to the ground with a clang. The remaining marine charged blindly towards the Tyranid, and tried to slash with his sword. The creature leant forwards and brought its mandibles around the man, and, with a slight crack, it bit down. The marines' body dropped, limp and lifeless to the blood soaked dirt. Now only the Squad leader remained. He had a Bolter pistol and Chain Sword, and was walking backwards while firing off bursts of bullets. Reth ran around the front of the alien, and pulled a grenade from his back pocket. The creature looked at him, its malicious eyes glowing red. A tentacle-like forearm shot out, and wrapped around Reths' left foot, pulling into the air, where he hung upside down. He heard Skor shouting, and the remaining Space Marine praying to the God Emperor. The Carnifex opened its maw, revealing rows of jagged, uneven fangs. "Eat this you ugly fucker" Reth muttered, and tossed the grenade into the aliens' throat. He quickly flicked his chainsaw upwards, and severed the tentacle holding him. He dropped, and, just as he hit the ground, a muffled boom sounded. The Carnifexs' neck exploded, spraying Reth with stinking, yellow blood. He scrambled out of the way, just as the huge cadaver crashed into the dirt, where it lay, quivering. Reth stood, and looked at the Space Marine. The man looked back, and then gasped. "By the Golden Throne, a bloody Ork!" He raised his pistol. Reth swung his chainsaw and knocked the weapon out of the mans hands. "He is a friend, good soldier. The God Emperor wills it." The man scowled. "The God Emperor would never will such blasphemy," he said, revving his Chain Sword. Reth heard Skor growl, and put up a hand to silence him. "Calm down friend, we are not here to harm you." The marine looked from Skor to Reth, and then lowered his weapon. "My squad is dead, destroyed by this filthy abomination." He walked over to the carcass of the alien, and spat on it. Reth raised his own chainsaw silently, resting the quivering teeth inches away from the marines' bald skull. He looked at Skor, who was frowning. "But why did-'' the marine began. He never finished. Reths' chainsaw roared, and the blade bit into the mans skull. There was a slight spray of blood, and then he fell to the ground. Reth picked up his Bolter pistol, and looked at Skor. Reth grinned, and walked away into the undergrowth. Skor hesitated slightly, staring at the corpse of the man that he thought they were meant to be protecting, and then turned and hurried after Reth.
This short story revolves around the character of Reth and His compagnion is an Ork named Skor, who has been exiled from his own klan for being too 'un-orky'. The 'Nids featured are of Hive Fleet Leviathan, and the Space Marines are Blood Angels.
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