- CONTINUED FROM THE TROOPER DATA PROBE.
The Warrior before him seemed to be seven feet tall. The man moved forward towards the exhausted troopers as though he was on a moving walkway. Two great Power weapons thrummed with energy and their blades glowed in the darkness. McPhail stared behind the Warrior, beyond the doorway, at the crumpled bodies of a dozen Pteravores. The Warrior was closer now and McPhail could see the great black Totem festooned with tiny charms and medals, which the man carried on his back. In the dim light McPhail could just discern the characteristic scars and Tatoos on the man's bald head. McPhail knew that before him stood a Tribune, one of the revered cadre of fighters, most exhaulted in the Nexus. The Tribune tossed a dark pod to the ground. It rolled across the floor, before coming to a sickly halt. The Pteravore head glistened with it's own internal fluids. Thousands of fine teeth ran round it's lamprey-like mouth and it's prehensile tongue now lolled stupidly to one side. "Are you all that remains of this unit Sergeant?" The Tribunes voice had a calm, dead quality, as if the sort of carnage that surrounded him held no new horror. "No Tribune - there is another section that assaulted the far end of this craft. We have not had contact with them for over two hours - They're probably dead" "You are not, Do not be so quick to relinquish hope for your comrades: to do so is to condemn them." There was no anger in his voice yet his words had steel. "What orders have you for us?" McPhail asked, the weight of command lifted from him. " I give no orders and take no orders. I am of the Released and follow no command but my own, and heed only the call of my brethren. You and your men have done well, now go where you will. I go to the heart of this sick wreck to drive my axe into the devils that dwell there." The Tribune turned and moved off towards the access corridors that were now faintly visible as the smoke cleared. He spoke no other words and did not wait for the troopers to follow. McPhail later found ten of the other troopers surviving in the hold of the Ship. They were surrounded by dismembered creatures, but there was no sign of the veteran warrior, except for the sharp, clean cuts in the enemy dead. McPhail was not to see the Tribune again for ten years. Then it would be different for he would stand alongside him and together they would answer the calling.....FILE TERMINATED.