Dhakkans Cell #1: "Freeing Lilitha"

Guardsman Kaarl's Tale

Keep in mind, Kaarls point of view is highly colored by his personal prejudices and attitudes!

Disrespect, thats why I was there. The locals had no respect for a uniform. A soldier gets a liberty and he wants to have a good time! He doesn’t want any trouble, but then there was that disrespect, and somebody had to teach them didn’t they! So I taught them some respect, and next time they see the uniform of 93rd ‘Cutas they’ll be right and proper respectful.

Course I got hands like spatchcocks* and I must have taught some of them a little too hard. I don’t recall exactly. It had been a long night lifting the glass and my memory is a bit soft around the edges. All I know is at some point everything went dark, and when I woke, I found myself in a cold cell underneath the Governors palace with nothin’ but a bucket and the too tight explosive collar of the penal legion locked around my neck. You might think that was the worst; but no, the worst was, having little Ish’* standing outside my cell in his dress blues, looking in at me with his unnatural eyes* and moaning about having to spend the rest of his liberty guardin’ me when he could have been off makin’ the rounds with the local poxie brontie. Not a good recipe for a hangover cure I can tell you.

That and the screamin’, the screamin’ was no help either. A woman-girl she’d been screamin’ when I first woke up and she hadn’t stopped since. Emperor knows how long she’d been screamin’ before I woke but she coulda screamed on forever in that dungeon and nobody would have ever heard her. Except on that night me and Ish’ heard of course. That pitiful caterwaulin’ echoin’ down those dungeon corridors would have been enough to make any man edgy, and little Ish’ was no exception, so he just had to go investigate didn’t he? And when Ish’ got back from his investigations he was pale white and shakin’ with sick all down the front of his blues. He was so shook up he actually let me outta my cell! Said he needed the back up, and we should go up and get my gear and weapons. All strictly against regulations of course, I could have quoted Ish’ chapter and verse but who was I to argue? Besides, that was his never mind and I wanted to get away from that soul chillin’ caterwaulin’, that and the already cold cell had dropped from cold to freezin’ in the time it took Ish’ to find the keys and set me free.

Up top in the palace courtyard a bunch of unlikely sorts had assembled, strange lookin’ bunch. Only one that looked like he was worth anything was an Arbite, he had the badge and the uniform anyway, that’s worth somethin’. By the time me and Ish’ had my gear sorted out that buncha misfits had decided that they needed to go down into the dungeon to investigate the “waves of psychic emanations”. All I wanted to do was to hot foot it back to the 93rd, but something about what Ish’ had seen or felt had got him fired and he was all for going back down with the rest of them. Well, the 93rd sticks with its own so I got myself ready and we all headed back down into the Governors dungeon. It didn’t take long for us to figure out where to go. The screamin' and the bone chilling cold led us to the right door, a big old iron door covered with frost, the kind of door that says “Don’t open me if you know what’s good for you!” We’ll we didn’t, so after some fussing with the keys the Arbite got the door unlocked and he pushed it open a crack.

That’s when everybody hit the floor pukin’ their guts out onto the pavers. An invisible wave of sick rolled out through that little crack like a Lehman Russ and knocked everybody flat, everybody but the 93rd that is. We hit that door like the Emperors Elite ready for the anything!

Except for what we found. The Planetary Governor, book in hand, screaming in some evil soundin’ language I never hope to hear again, lashin’ some chained woman-girl with an electro-whip, and blood, lots of it, old, dried, clotted, fresh runnin’, blood, blood, blood.

There I was, Kaarl, mixed up in the business of my betters. A Planetary Governor in the sights of my Las Gun and me itchin’ to pull the trigger. Wantin’ to stop that electro-whip from comin’ down one more time and raisin’ still one more scream! But that’s not for a plain soldier like me to do, that’s for the and great and mighty, officers work. Not for Guardsman Kaarl. So instead I gave him a warnin’ shout over the din of his evil chantin’ in my best parade ground roar, but that whip hand kept comin’ down machine-like regular and the chantin’ growl never even slowed. So it’s “For the Emperor” and charge! And with little Ish’ one step behind, I made a grab for the electro-whip. But you know, between the slippin’ and slidin’ on the blood and the whip crackin’ dangerous close to the explosive collar clamped around my neck I never actually laid a hand on the Governor! The other lot had finished with their sick spell though so they piled in on him too and quick as you please he was trussed up snug like a pig at a banquet. Me, Ish’ and the Arbite marched the Governor down to the very cell where I started the night and locked him up tight to wait for those that might have an interest in him.

Then things got bad. When we got back to the bloody room, the rest had already released the woman-girl from her chains, and time got strange and slow, and the woman-girl was a demon queen, and there was that kiss.

And a flash of light.


But I won’t talk about that. Won’t even think about that! And by the time I did start thinkin’ proper again I found we weren’t in the dungeon any longer, oh no. We were in the open, under the stars, and the Dungeon, and the Governor, and the Palace, and all the Governors men were burned up and gone. Only thing that was left was me, Ish’ and the misfits, standin’ in a crater on a spire of rock with no way down.

That’s where the Inquisition found us. They took us, questioned us, trained us, and now I’ll be taking my orders from Inquisitor Dhakken. I’m an Inquisitors man now.

You got to respect that.

*Kaarl rolled the quirk “Hands like Spatchcocks” I thought it might mean that he has large hands, hence its use here; however, the only definition I can find for Spatchcock is “Young Chicken” so I’m not sure what having hands like spatchcocks would be like. I’ve left it in because I think its hilarious.

*Ish’ or Little Ish’ is Kaarls nickname for K.C.’s character Ishmael Havelock.

*Ismael Havelock rolled the quirk “Eyes like a Cats”.

Victus's Tale

Victus was found as a baby, abandandoned, in a cargo container on the rogue trader "Lucrum". Whoever it was who showed the infant-him mercy, he certainly doesn't remember. But someone must have for a time because he survived.

He lived his early life, mostly feral, begging scraps and seeking shelter like an animal.

As he grew older, things didn't get much better. Victus was plagued by voices, odd temptations, and strange dreams of women with red glistening skin and lobster claws. By the time he reached puberty, he was nothing more than a full blown psychotic, talking to a pair of dice he found as well as an old pistol he constantly cuddled like a well-loved child's toy. Several arbiters on the ship agreed that he was potentially dangerous, captured him, and threw him in the brig when Victus was 13.

There he continued to babble and hallucinate until one alarming day nearly 5 years later when a prison guard, making his rounds, discovered Victus in his cell holding his beloved gun. The guard quickly took the gun away from Victus and locked it away in a cabinet...only to discover it back in Victus's possession the next day. A third time, with several witnesses watching the gun literally appear in Victus' hands, was enough to convince the powers that be aboard the ship that Victus was a psyker.

The Black Ship came soon thereafter, and Victus spent the next 21 years controlling his talent, learning to deal with the warp, and finally having his strange impulses taken away. At 38, Victus emerged from his sanctioning as an Imperial Psyker, owing his very sanity and life to the Imperium. All semblance of control and direction in his life he owes to the Imperium and to the Emperor and Victus will never forget that.

Today, Victus is still a disturbing individual in his own way. He can still be found talking and listening to his dice, obsessing over his latest "chosen" gun, saying oddly inappropriate things at inappropriate times, and barely being able to relate to his fellow human beings. Fortunately, as a psyker, this isn't so unusual. Victus will occassionally go long periods without talking...he isn't used to people listening. He doesn't have much ego and is fairly pliable to people with legitimate authority over him. He takes his divination to heart (Violence solves everything), however, and can be rather bloodthirsty and punitive.

Passages taken from the pages of Silon Quintos’ diaries.

Book II, pg.15

…..this freezing chill, so cold my bones are again starting to ache. I just wish we would get there already…………

Book II, pg.124

…can sense their fears, their joy, their cries, their resignation—I weave in and out of their thoughts and peer into their souls— the images: some dim, some bright like the sea of stars that fill the vastness of space—the same billions I see rushing from the confines of this Emperor forsaken chamber. I would have gone crazy if it were not for that small window that stares at me from the other side of the corridor. I cannot help but gaze at it for what feels like days, it is the only thing I can do to try and tune them out. I keep trying but cannot, they persist-- they will not let me sleep!! Intertwining ghostly images with accompanying audible whispers that at times ring in my ear like wailing animals.-- all 34,847 of them. All of us crammed in chamber after chamber within this fleet of Black Ships--destined to serve as sustenance for the God Emperor himself. I could nev……

Book II, pg. 187

My earliest memories are so dim, ironic that I can see into every mind but my own—every time I try and remember anything about them, I get such a sharp pain near the front and sides of my brain…..even as I write this I feel a pulsing in...the nausea is getting worse…where is my…

Book II, pg. 188

… just woke up from another episode-- I do not know if I will ever reach any memory of my parents. I want to ask them so many questions, such…

Book II, pg. 190

… I can tolerate the pain at times but the uncontrollable nosebleeds leave me so weak I pass out not knowing how long I’ve been unconscious. It is the only way I have found that allows me to get some rest from the constant pain…

Book VI, pg.45

…I’m on my 14th year of psyker training and can feel the constant stress aging my body; I've already lost every single strand of hair on my body and my flesh all but drained of any color. I do not know how much more my body can handle…….I have to remember they taught me to control the visions and subdue the pain. It was they who rescued me from a sure and painful death- one I was not ready nor willing to give so freely. I now have a purpose, what path I will choose I do not know...

Book VI, pg. 245

…they have not told me but I have attained Alpha-level and can also tell that my training on this station is coming to an end…I know my real training lies ahead, I have never set foot on a planet but look forward to whatever this planet Bront has in store for me. I cannot see anything past that other than already feel its warm air, it will be a welcome change to this perpetual freezer…

Book VI, pg. 278

…the Guncutter just touched down, location Bront, capital city of Karney. I can see the fortress where I will begin my servitude, just past a field of crops-- its long leafy stalks swaying, almost as if to welcome me…