tisdag 15 oktober 2013

Raphael gets an assignment

Raphael hesitantly entered the chamber. Being called before the primarch himself was an honour, and he could think of no way that he could have made himself worthy of it. The room was large but despite that it was wholly dominated by one massive table in dark oak. Totally round. Around the table stood chairs, here the primarch would meet the company captains under his command, it was as far as Raphael knew a replica of a similiar room from which the lion had ruled on Caliban. The room was mostly deserted now, there was only one person in it besides himself. If person could even be used for such a being. The table was large and took up most of the space of the room, yet it seemed small and unimportant besides the giant who sat in the largest chair. His armour was gilded with lions heads wings and vines, yet the armour seemed bland before the majesty of the man in it. The primarch Lion el'Johnson, the lion son of the forest. He sat absolutely still beside the table, staring out in the distance lost in thought.
Raphael knew better than to disturb the lord of the first legion, so he stood silently by the door. A company captain might have allowed to sit down, Raphael didn't know, the inner circles rules was for the primarch and the inner circle to know. It didn't matter Raphael wasn't inner circle or even a company captain, for him it was unthinkable to sit in the presence of this demigod. As was it to force his presence on him.
For a long while he stood there looking at his lord and master, then the lion suddenly shook his head as if to physically shake a thought out if his head, he suddenly realised Raphael was there, he didn't look surprised and definitely not startled, but there was a slight widening of his eyes that betrayed that he was a bit uncomfortable that Raphael could have entered the room without him noticing. Then a moments hesitation, Raphael wondered if his company captain had been wrong and the primarch had not sent for him after all.
”It's captain Raphael now isn't it?” The lion finally said.
”Yes my lord primarch” Raphael answered with relief. The lion did not ask him to sit and Raphael did not ask to.
”The Imperium has won a massive victory at Ullanor, the emperor is retiring to Terra to build his Imperium leaving one of his sons as warmaster of his forces” The primarch told him.
Rapahel opened his mouth, but the primarch interrupted him.
”It will not be me” there was a hint of bitterness in the words ”The emperor has seen it fit to a point my brother Horus to warmaster” not bitterness... concern?
”A fine choice my lord, the Luna Wolves are second only to us, Horus is a good general”
”That he is, but sometimes to clever for his own good” the lion muttered then continued ”The emperor has taken his personal honour guard with him back to Terra, all eighteen companies. As well as the full force of the legio custodes. He has asked that each of the primarchs send a force to act as a honour guard for the new warmaster. No specifics to how large this force is to be have been given so I will send captain Kellaniel and five hundred space marines” Half as many as had been in the emperor's dark angel's honour guard, not few enough to make it an insult but few enough to show that the lion considered parading not to be the duty of the space marines and this new warmaster not the emperors equal.
”I understand” Raphael said, wondering if the primarch truly knew how much he read from the situation. The primarch laughed, it was a dry bitter laugh but a laugh none the less.
”I sincerely doubt that captain, which is why you are here, I will make you understand”
”Your commanders have said you are something of plotter captain, always looking to peoples agendas, always seeking to gain an advantage. While I may normally have no patience for such behaviour amongst my Dark Angels, there are times when... special talents... may be useful”
Raphael's mind raced, considering what the lion had just said he tried to not to do it but he couldn't help but run through the information sort it and evaluate it, it was simply his nature. He thought he knew where the lion was going with this and it frightened him, because if it was true then...
”Do you remember when we first met, captain?” The primarch asked, the question took Raphael aback but how could he forget.
”In the hall of servants, on my home world, after we had cast down the tyrants and joined the Imperium, you spoke to all of us who would be given the chance to become space marines”
”Yes, we stood under the statues of your gods, and I told you the imperial truth, do you remember what you responded?” How could Raphael forget he a mere human had spoken out of turn to the primarch of the Dark Angels legion, and almost contradicted him.
”While it may be true that there are no gods, the things that the servants worshipped were real, whatever they are I have felt their presence their thirst” Raphael cited himself. One of the marines of the lions bodyguard had lifted him from the ground in one hand and told him to deny the existence of false gods, and Raphael had done so. He did not think the primarch had remembered the incident nor that the boy who spoke out of turn was the captain who stood before him.
”Yes, you could feel their thirst, I though nothing of it at first but then they told me you were a psyker” the lion said ”And that thirst, if you felt it again, would you recognise it captain”
Raphael was startled was the primarch saying what he thought he was saying?
”I... but... the Imperium doesn't believe in gods or daemons, what...?”
”My reasons to ask is for me to know captain, what is for you is to obey, answer my question”
”I would recognise it my lord” Raphael said quickly ”That is if i was to reach out, which I am forbidden to do by the edict of Nikkea”
”And if I were to order you to reach out” The primarch said beginning to stand.
Raphael went down on one knee, clasping his right hand over his chest and lowering his eyes.
”As you said my lord, for me is to obey, you are my primarch, for me your words is the will of the emperor” He heard how the primarch sat down again, and that dry laugh.
”You truly do speak like a politician captain” the lion scoffed ”Very well this day it suits my purpose. You will accompany the honour guard sent to my brother Horus, you will... keep your eyes and ears open”
”For what my lord?” Raphael dared to ask though he doubted he would be given an answer.
”I'm not sure, but I have a feeling you'll know should the time come. You may leave me captain”
Raphael got on his feet bowed again though the lion no longer paid any attention to him, and and turned to leave.
"Captain" the primarch halted him "Should you encounter any other worlds with similiar religions to that of your home world, I would very much want to hear of it, now you may go" Raphael bowed again and left. The primarch had been right he had not understood, but he planned to remedy that. Parts of it he had understood, the lion wasn't sure about the imperial truth, it was concerning that he would think that the gods of the servants may be out here as well. As concerning was being asked to spy on the warmaster. They had always been told how the primarchs was united, a brotherhood, set on protecting mankind. Turns out there was at least some sibling rivalry. And being ordered to break the edict of Nikkea, regardless of what he had told the primarch Raphael was fairly certain the order to do so had not come from the emperor. He could not imagine the lion being disloyal though. The primarch of the first legion had his flaws, Raphael knew that well enough, but lack of loyalty was not one of those. Raphael hurried towards the bays, he had to try to get a word in with Anntheus before word got through of his reassignment.

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