As mentioned earlier, I've been running a Dark Heresy campaign for a small group of gamers in London. After discussing the archetype and vague ideas the PCs had for their characters, I would write a short story detailing their requisitioning to the service of the Inquisition. The following is the narrative for a character who sadly never made it into the campaign as his player had to withdraw. I'm quite proud of this narrative, though, and thought I would share it here in lieu of any photographs of my current miniatures. I'm mindful that this is slowly turning the blog into a wall of text, but for now, I don't mind so much - those interested will persevere.
So, here is the tale of Octus Oran, a feral world Assassin.
The dust winds rose, bringing with them the eerie shrieking that ran through the freezing nights on the Emperor-forsaken world of Telix Prime. The days were long and cruel and would burn an exposed man to meat within minutes, but the nights offered little respite: the howling winds easily masking the noise of the followers in the dark, burrowing in the sands below.
Octus Oran sat squat in the makeshift tent he had erected as the twin suns sank behind the horizon; muttering his prayers to the twin lights of He Who Redeems, the bone trinkets of devotion that he usually wore around his neck and waist rattled outside, hanging from the tent pole to ward off the spirits of the dead.
Carefully unwrapping the rags from his hands, Oran reached into his pack with his nimble fingers, horrifically scarred by the trials of flesh from his youth. Pulling out the primitively carved runes of the Emperor's Tarot, he scattered a small handful on the cool sand in front of him: the Sun, the hanged man and the warrior - fortune indeed, the Emperor blessed him and tomorrow he would have his kill. Weeks he had been tracking his prey and her twin children through the sands, yet she had remained elusive, at times disappearing for days across the sands on the powerful leathery beasts they knew as Kal'ath, leaving Oran to track the woman through the faint smell of her sex which lingered in the air like a sweet perfume.
Settling down, reassured by the runic divination, he feasted, and began rubbing the fat of the small rodent he made for a meal on the side of the silvery shotgun, usually wrapped in rags to prevent sunlight glinting, giving away his position to any predators. The prayers to sate the restless spirit of the great weapon felt clumsy in his mouth, the low gothic he had been taught by the Angel in Silver still difficult to annunciate after all this time.
She had arrived from the skies some fifteen hundred cycles before, a great vision in silver; preternaturally tall, she stood a full head and shoulders higher than the lithe Oran, her short, blonde hair glistened like the sun itself and he knew she was blessed. At her side she held a curious weapon of some kind: long and slender, the upper tip finishing in a crescent blade, like a vast silver moon, the burning light reflected off it's cruel surface and on to her ornately etched silver plate armour. He fell, prostrate to his knees, fearing that she was from the heavens and had come to seek his soul. However, she was kind and stern, like the Elders he had known before he became a hunter; she brought with her powerful weaponry, the sleek pistol of the sun he had dared not use, and the great silver shotgun which had made him the most feared of all hunters on Telix Prime. She had also brought with her the language to appease the spirits of these weapons, coaxing them to his calling, and she had brought the truth of the twin Suns and of He who Redeems.
He loved her, and he slept soundly on her memory.
Rising early, Oran knelt before the horizon outside his ragged tent as the twin suns began their ascent into the skies; prostrating himself before the skyline, he chanted his devotion and asked for their protection in the long day ahead. Standing, he continued his low rumbling song as he gathered up his bone trinkets and tied them about his waist and neck. Reaching into the tent, he gathered up his rags and tied them about his leathery hands and scarred face, burnt by the Suns so long ago in the mandatory trials. Fixing his primitive goggles in place, he finished packing away his possessions and stalked into the distance to follow the dunes his prey had surmounted before sundown.
After a few hours, Oran reached the great dunes and slithered up them on his belly like the wyrms he had observed as a child. Reaching the apex of the dunes, he peered over, sniffing the air through his ragged mask. A short way in front of him, with it's back turned to him, one of the twin children of his prey squat, a small trickle of fluid running between it's legs from underneath it's ragged skirts and down the far side of the dune. Crawling forward, Oran slithered, and reaching the child, snapped it's neck, killing it instantly and dragged it's limp corpse back behind the dune. It would only be a matter of moments before it's mother would know something was amiss and Oran readied the sun pistol and prayed under his breath to ease it's angered spirits as he coaxed it's workings alive.
The woman in the distance gazed up the dune, noticing her child was gone, in panic sprinted up the sands, following the quickly evaporating wet trail in the now baking sand. Oran took his aim and as the woman reached the summit of the sands, he took a single shot, felling the woman immediately, a hole burnt through her rags and into her head.
"Octus Oran", a woman's voice spoke out behind him, sending a cold shiver through his body... what treachery was this?
Spinning around, onto his back, the pistol still clutched in his hands, a great warrior sat astride a Kal'ath was silhouetted by the twin Suns. Covering the lenses of his goggles in vain to see her, Oran could not begin to fathom how she had stalked he, the great hunter, without his noticing.
She stepped from the great beast and walked to the assassin as his eyes adjusted to the light: it was the Angel in Silver. Weeping with joy, Oran prostrate himself at her feet as she stood, clumsily searching for the correct words she had taught him,
"Mistress," stuttered Oran,
"You're training is complete, Oran," the woman's stern voice spoke out, you are to accompany me far from this place, never to return. You have been chosen by He who Redeems to serve at his side, as an agent of the Hanged Man, and the will of the God-Emperor of all mankind."
"Come!" she shouted, mounting the great Kal'ath with ease. Turning she gazed at the remaining of the twin children who, drawn by the commotion, had wandered up the sand to find the slumped corpses of his mother and bretheren. She looked down at it with something approaching curiosity and threw the small child an effigy of the Sun and turned the beast, marching it into the distance.