One of the few members of the 4th peeked out of his heavy bolter dugout.
“More friendlies? Huh. We thought we picked up traces of friendly Valkyries dancing about but couldnt be sure. The day’s been a bit crazier than anyone expected.”
At that, the trooper nodded at the burning wreck filling the sky.
“Beats me as to what that thing is, but its dead and we killed it. Good enough for me. Come on, follow one of the guides back at camp, he should be able to get you to where the main group is located. Apparently they havent made it into the local city yet.”
Elsewhere, in high orbit over Ullianor
“You said it would work you useless whelp!”
A hulking chaos lord, clad in the armor of the word bearers traitor legion gripped the neck of a frail looking psyker.
“You said you would have found it by now! WHERE IS IT? WHERE is the Maledictum? We have floated over this dustbin of a planet for weeks, and now when we are discovered you come to me with excuses!”
Not waiting for a response, the lord snapped the psykers neck and tossed his body across the bridge.
“Your trick with that posessed capitol ship failed as well. The dark gods grow furious at our wanton waste of their gifts.”
He turned to address a silent group of psykers.
“Khorne would have my head of a pike for consorting you scum, but the Maledictum is worth the risk. Find me it, use all of your resources, and get me my prize!”
One cultist shambled forward, covered in carvings.
“Oh g-great lord Umagon, there is a way, the other desert men of Dune, they have long summoned the dark gods, we could-“
“Explain to me why you have not already used such readily available resources, or you will die too. I was told the Maledictum was on this world by my lords, it is written. It should have been a simple matter to simply find the device!”
Another word bearer, at the helm of the command ship, sounded an alarm.
“Incomming loyalist vessel. Very, very large. Even with the Seers illusions we wont be able to fool them for long. Whats your order?”
Lord Umagon took a deep breath.
“It appears that things have escalated. Call the ships off, but not before you and all your kin get off of my ship, get on that planet, and bring these Dune men into line. When I return I will bring the full force of my warband. More than enough to turn the deserts of this world into glass. Pray that you have found the Maledictum by then, or you will be obliterated along with this world.”
“Oh, and one more thing, dont let any of the imperials get off that planet alive. Summon your warp energies and let the Eyes gaze fall on this world. I refuse to let the inquisitor steal away another of our relics!”
The fleet of damaged chaos vessels began pulling away as a few carefully hidden drop pods shot through the atmosphere, which was becoming stormy and warp-ridden. It was clear that this would be the last chance to land on Ulianor.
“Admiral, message coming in from a mechanicus ship. Patching it through.”
Karel gave a swift salute to the incoming Mechanicus ships. “Send over the targeting data. Your boys can put down with the Ulimbic, nice open dunes around that area should be good for your tanks. Emperor bless us all, and Omnissiah bless our ships!”
Meanwhile, the 4th company was preparing to move, using what few transport vehicles they had. Some guardsmen elected to ride on top of the tanks and transports rather than sit cramped inside the things. Jacobus was riding on the lead vehicle, sitting on top of the Chimera with Hiras and her squad. He squeezed the Sergeant’s hand. He believed her background as a feral warrior would help him deal with the locals.
She thought he was out of his mind, and that these natives were a bunch of savages.