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[Ic] Of Ash And Fire V2.0 - Roleplaying Thread


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  • 2 weeks later...

Hey guys~ I’m baaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaack! Not sure how often I can do this, but I WILL try to as often as I can. Cheers!


A soldier –a child solider, now a mid-aged teen clad in the tell-tale plate of a high-ranking officer, –Gestalt armor over a body suit, the best of the best- walked briskly down the Council’s halls, a certain destination in mind. To pay a visit to one Tenno that he knew was here today, and is respected through fear of his natural abilities, his potential, and his removedness from everything. This soldier has overcome everything in his path, save for one thing.


Twenty. Seven. Twenty seven consecutive losses to that being, that creature that is shaped so much like a male Tenno.  The soldier’s fists clenched, and his eyes burned with intensity under his armored helmet as he kept walking. He went over in his head on what he knew about his opponent.


Fast. Unbelievably fast. So much so, that without extensive, invasive, augmentation and modification, no Tenno could ever hope to match him.


Strong. To the point where no one knows his true strength. All do know however, that he is unimaginably strong.


Skilled. To the point where it is frightening. As if he had fought war after war, one conflict after the other. A mind for battle strategy that creates plans at a blistering rate of three hundred plans a second. With all factors –such as the morale and equipment of both sides- included in each of those plans. It was almost as if conflict of the physical variety was what he was created for in the schemes of the Universe. And he improved after every single inevitable success.


Detached. Not as if he were in a waking dream, or tired. Far from it, in fact. Like he didn’t care. Couldn’t. And no one could get close to him to see how he really thought. Because no one dared to.

And now, this soldier is going to fight him, that creature so feared, and awe inspiring. To achieve his goal. The one thing he could not beat. His fist clenched even harder in anticipation if it were possible.






Defeating the ‘Bloodstained Wolf, Destroyer of the City of Gainsborough, Slaughterer of the entire Falcatan Peoples, Michael the Archangel, The Dragoon, The Lance of the Heavens, The Dancer of Blood, Servant of the Moon, The Hunter, and the Ninth Blade of the Eight Blades of Disaster’, in single combat.





No one knows if he even has a name, or even a face, he just follows orders. Michael –the name of his Warframe-, was as close to a name as they would get. No, he wasn’t angry at the… boy/man/creature… but rather, at his losses. These losses were an obstacle to his very being. He couldn’t move faster than him, couldn’t beat him in a contest of strength, couldn’t outpace the rate at which he grew because he always won his battles, couldn’t counter his thousands of plans, and certainly couldn’t agitate him –he never would anyway, that’d be dishonorable and stupid-. A perfect soldier. A perfect weapon. All they could do was fight.


The solider could hear the telltale signs of his presence in the building. The tenuous atmosphere. The hushed, fearful, and awed whispers of the politicians. He was most likely waiting there for him, waiting patiently- The whispers suddenly picked up in intensity and fearfulness. The soldier heard a voice, annoying and sensuous. A voice which only belonged to one.


Asria, leader of the Lycan Cartel. And pestering ‘Michael’ again if he heard right. He would call her a sick and sadistic woman, but when you’re powerful and high-ranking, it’d be stranger if you didn’t have a quirk. “Come on ‘Michael’! Aren’t you the least bit interested in these?!” The soldier imagined Asria grabbing a handful of each breast and shaking them in front of his foe’s face. As he turned the corner, he called out in a voice that could best be described as a voice fit to lead troops –as commanding as a teen could sound-.


“Enough with that Asria. You’ve never gotten him to take you up on your offers, and most likely never will.”

Everyone in the room turned around, save ‘Michael’, who imperceptibly –to most- turned his head to the soldier, still in seiza unaffected by Asria’s advances.


“That’s mean of you boy~! Oh, I’m hurt, what ever will you do to make this up to me, the fair Asria?”


The soldier grinned under his helmet. Then replied. “I’m not. Nor do I ever plan to. But my focus isn’t you. It’s him.”

“Ah yes, you boys and your little rivalries. I don’t understand why you don’t just end him if it bothers you that much.”


‘Michael’ then spoke. “You do not understand because you choose not to, and cannot until you have lived lives like ours, Lady Asria. A war over boundaries and product is one thing. However, constant physical conflict is another. Ending another with your own hands as their lifeblood flows out of them onto the ground, wetting walls and floors, and giving rise to new life on warred-upon soil. The ability to understand the other to a point that is frightening when one fist meets the other, when blades lock.”


Everyone was speechless, even Asria, the one with endless quips full of sexual innuendo. Why was he-


“I think that’s the longest I’ve ever heard him talk! The world must be ending…” The soldier shook his head. “So, are we to fight, ‘Michael’?

‘Michael’ tilted his head to the side whilst looking at the soldier, as if the question was odd. In ‘Michael’s’ mind, it was.

“Do I not wait for you here, for hours, upon finishing one of the Council’s orders, Caelus?”

            …He waited for hours?


“Awwwww… Almost sounds like he wuvs youuuuu~!” Caelus visibly twitched and gave a glower under his helmet that could have melted a bulkhead. Then he sighed explosively and shook his head. “No. Just… No.”


            “If you are quite done…” Ah, yes. The fight. Caelus faces towards ‘Michael’, gracefully goes into seiza, and places his beautiful –and very effective- Dragon Nikana before himself as the crowd hurriedly shuffles towards safety.

Before ‘Michael’ laid the sword he regularly used. Somewhat large, double-edged, and crucifix shaped. He, perhaps ironically, named it Prayer. Some stories went that he found it on a battlefield after a hard-fought conflict, and prayed before it to wash himself of his sins or something else entirely. Others say it is an actual crucifix, the edges ground into a blade and hilt with –real!- leather, and metal added to make a reinforced guard, a possible byplay on ‘a cross to bear’, literally.


But that was neither here nor there. They both nodded to each other, and quicker than those present –without heavy augmentation- could see, they struck. The sharp and sudden ring of metal against metal, the ever horrible and beautiful song of steel, sounded in the halls, dazzling those with flashes of silver as they fought in silence. For seconds, minutes, or hours, the warriors could not tell. Parry, counter, thrust, slash, pommel strike, pirouetting over and over, in a revolving dance of deadly silver. Finally, it ended as they both made their final strikes. That which they agreed upon through no audible speech.


Caelus’ blade struck ‘Michael’s’ helmet in a horizontal slice, but broke. ‘Michael’s’ blade however, continued at the same time Caelus’ did, slicing open his helmet and letting his features show. ‘Michael’ froze for a moment, and then shifted his stance to more of a normal one. “You have done well, Caelus. Few have ever done what you did today. Feel proud, but not arrogant. Continue your training. Keep moving onwards towards the horizon only you can see. Farewell.”


Caelus blinked his eyes in confusion. What happened? Surely he wasn’t- Just then, his communicator flared up. He’d be leading the troops at Axiom to quell a rebellion against the Tenno. Caelus walked off towards his quarters to clean. He’d be remiss to show up, covered in bruises and smelling –and being drenched in- sweat. He looked in the mirror, staring for just a moment before he set to work on his bruises.












A young man with long white hair, a wolfish face, and silver eyes stared back.

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Here is the story I promised! My longest yet. 1500+ words.

As the lone Zephyr went to the liset dock she saw no one on the way there except for a few people. Granted she wasn't that far away from the dock but it was still disconcerting. When Aero get into her Liset Ordis immediately piped up saying

"Hello Operator. You have been gone for over 2 months"

Aero muttered back "shut up Ordis"

As Aero walked down the ramp she let out a gasp upon noticing that her Kubrow had deteriorated too much and is now dead. She ran over and started softly sobbing. Vowing that she will get a new Kubrow. Ordis the told her of new mail from the Lotus. (Sent to all Tenno)

"Hello Tenno I have a special treat for all of you. I have found a cache of Kubrow eggs and all the required items on earth along with some color pigments.

-The Lotus"

Aero involuntarily gasped and straight away went to incubating her brand new Kubrow egg.

As she went to the onboard armoury she looked over her weapons choosing a Paris Prime, the Stalkers variant of the Kunai the Despair and finally the sharpened to perfection Dual Zoren. Engraved on the hilt of each Zorens was one word. "BloodSaws". She went up to the navigation console and headed to the new Relays having heard something about a Void Trader. Who has primed mods to sell. While on the Relays she came across 6 rooms lined up with different logos on them.

When she enterd the one which was labelled Cephalon Suda (was intrigued by the name) she walked into a room which upon entering a floating AI which asked if she wanted to represent them. Liking computers she said yes and was give a sigil to put on her Warframe. Once she got back to her Liset

Ordis said "Ahhh yes. Cephalon Suda, there weapon the Synoid Gammacor is in very high demand right now. Just a tip operator do NOT call her Miss Floating Box. It is very inconsiderate of you if you did."

"Ok Ordis, thanks for telling me, I'll be nice to Suda. She sounds cool anyway."

As the lone Liset left the Relay it disappeared off the radar. As Aero walked down the ramp she was greeted by a Opticor sitting gently in the foundry, gingerly picking the weapon of destruction up she saw how it took a while to spin up then fire, how when fully charged it ripped through anything you threw in it's way. Being bored she sent ordis on a patrol and hopped in her Archwing and started to fly around being in a moment of zen as she blew up any non-tenno lifeforms in the vicinity with the Odonata on her back. As she gingerly disengaged the Archwing from her back she was swept up in the majesty couple with the silence to create a nice vision of the stars. She was brought back into reality after realising she was nearly dead and the Archwing flying back towards her.

She gasped in a gulp of air once the Archwing had re-engaged. When she flew back to her Liset Ordis said. "I detected a cache of Strun Wraiths on earth."


"Operator, they have just been blown up by a group of renegade Grineer."

"FUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUU! I will kill all of those grineer. Set course to them."

"Yes Operator"

Aero braced on the ramp as Ordis swung the ship around for a intercept course. Going down the ramp and to the Arsenal she equipped her Boltor Prime, Twin Wraith Vipers and her trusty Bloodsaws.

The liset clamped onto the outside of the ship with a clang and a vicious spitting noise was heard as the laser cutters cut into the airlock. Aero stepped into the dropper as it swirled around she was meeted by 100+ grineer facing her.

"Detach and seal the hole behind you Ordis" Aero spoke into the intercom. As the Liset pulled away it jumped away waiting for a signal to indicate it to come back. When she opened the other side of the airlock she activated turbulence and calmly cleaved into the group like a arrow from a bow Bloodsaws twirling they made they're names truth as it painted the walls with grineer blood. Maniacally laughing underneath her helmet as she equipped her bolter and stood still opened fire and laughed as hordes of Grineer fell beneath the torrential and deadly rain of darts whistling as they pierced through Grineer flesh, bone and armour. She put her boltor prime away and went in with the Zorens in her hands as she cut off limbs, cut them from head to pelvis and when she was done she was painted in a deep crimson red she quickly cast turbulence and it got the blood off of her. She stealthily stalked through the air vents laughing to herself as she watched the Grineer be paranoid and looking everywhere.

When she got to the command centre she saw the Grineer commanders replaying the destruction of the Strun Wraiths laughing to themselves. When she dropped down the room fell silent except for 5 Boltor Prime shots to the head of each Grineer commander she then left by the airvents after leaving a high explosive in the room and all through the air vents.

"Ordis it's time comeback." Aero said calmly as she set up the detonator.

"Yes Operator. Drive engaged and cloaked coming into dropoff location."

Aero raced through the ship bursting anyone and everyone down with her Twin Wraith vipers as she raced back. When she got to the dropoff location Ordis uncloaked and she stepped in as it started to spin around and sped off as the ship in the distance was ripped open revealing several decks to the cold vacuum of space. Aero took off her helmet and started smiling as the Grineer were pulled out to their deaths. The Liset set course for the Dojo. When the Liset docked she saw more Tenno in the docking bay. As she stepped out people said welcome back from the long sleep.

"Exactly how long was I asleep for?" Asked Aero.

"Exactly 3 months, 12 days and 18 hours Tenno Aero." Replied a Passing Ein.

"Well, that was... Ummm creepy." Aero then ran off to the Memorial Room.

As she went inside she knelt beneath the masterpiece made by Quinn. As she read the inscription she felt proud to be in the same clan that the Mighty Ajkrumen was in. She quickly stood up as she heard the door open behind her.

"Who's that?" Asked Aero

"Oh just me Cyanide the deadly poison."

"Nice to see you again Cyanide. Hows life been while I was out?"

"Alad V and Frohd bek were at it again. They were rewarding a different wraith each. I chose the Karak one. Oh and know the Strun Wraith? They found a cache!"

"I know. Let's just say the d***heads who blew up the cache are regretting themselves just a bit now."

"Let me guess calmly walked through slicing each and every head off?"

"Close but no cigar" she said as she pulled up an image a Grineer ship listing one side with several decks ripped open from stern to bow.

"Yeah, they certainly are."

"Heard the tale of Ajkrumen?"

"No actually, never been over here before."

"Well then, sit down and I'll tell it."

Final bit of the Gradivus Dilemma everything was going fine. Then the stalker decided it was time for Ajkrumen.

"You may come here today alive Stalker. But you will not leave alive." Said Ajkrumen

As if in response to the statement the stalker appeared behind him and did a quick arc with the Hate only to be met with a Reaper Prime. As the Stalker was about kill Ajkrumen. Gold and silver flashed and the Stalker toppled over. With nothing to hold it the hate fell and slew the mighty Ajkrumen.

"And that is the tale of the mighty Ajkrumen." Said Aero.

"I, I never knew. That is worthy of this statue. Lets go and do something more cheery, ok? Like trying our luck in the void."

"Sure why not Cyanide, you got the keys?"

"You bet, Tower 2 defence?"


And with that the two women set off for there Lisets. Once in the Lisets they linked up and flew out to the tower. Guns blazing blade cleaving. Cyanide's Scindo Prime cleaving multiple at a time while aero's Zorens inflicting a flurry of blows slicing the unfortunate enemy into multiple tiny pieces. The two Frames weren't suited that well to defense but their offensive abilities more than made up for it. With the occasional beam from the orokin consoles they lasted to 30 waves with nothing except for Forma and Credits to show, resigned they left. When they returned to the Lisets. When in them Aero had a brillant idea of sticking modifiers into the spikes making it best gun. But sadly boltor prime didn't see them. Mean Boltor Prime. Tired Aero fell asleep in the Liset.

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A new thing! No idea how good it is considering I'm throwing it together in two hours before work, but I hope it's ok.


The Liset’s engines flared, pushing the small vessel deeper into space. Two others shot along nearby, their energy trails altered to give off as little telltale glow of existence as possible. Each was nearly identical, a machine modified to be as silent and nonexistent as possible; shadows within the even deeper shadow of space.


In each, the broad windows that faced their destination had two projection windows open, the holograms showing the visages of two other black-and-red clad, monstrously helmeted hunters. Their voices modulated to be unrecognizable but still understood, they planned to do the unprecedented.


“I don’t know why I agreed to this,” muttered one, or as close to muttering as one could get whose voice hissed like a chorus of snakes, “It goes against the Lore. It’s an abomination. A hunter hunts alone. The Unattached are the strongest and least assailable. Or have we forgotten?”


“I remember the Dictates as well as you do, but it’s too late to turn back now. We all agreed; fallacy or not, this was necessary.” This voice was cooler, more clipped. Controlled.


The orchestrator of this endeavor stood ramrod straight in his Liset, hands clasped behind his back as he spoke. “This cannot succeed without some semblance of team work,” he somehow managed to sound even more authoritative and calm than the one who had spoken before him. “I know it is distasteful, but to hunt this prey we need to hunt like this prey. Unlike our normal marks, we need to make sure this one is taken alive. She will fight hard, but I would prefer her as unhurt as possible. However, capture is priority. The Menders can take care of physical hurts if necessary.” And it likely will be necessary, he added to himself. This mission went against the grain of his training since waking, but he knew his target. She would fight like a cornered animal in her ignorance. She wouldn’t be able to see that he was a savior, not an enemy. Not yet. That was why it was so important to isolate her. If he went in alone and she was with a Squad, it would be four on one. Normally that was no issue. A mark was given, and then hunted. You went in long enough to secure the kill and no longer and ignored whatever you weren’t after. But a capture… that was different. And unusual. He wouldn’t get the time to subdue her if she wasn’t alone. Her squad would do what they were trained to do, focus on the threat until it was a threat no longer. He couldn’t risk that.


One of the shadowy forms made a noise that sounded like, “Tsk.” Although as distorted as it was it sounded odd and nearly unrecognizable. “As long as I get the task I asked for I don’t care how long you’re off on your wild goose chase. I’ve no interest in making pets of my prey. The only reason I’m here is because my mark is here.” He saw the one speaking play with the deadly sharp end of the heavy scythe in its hands and repressed a shudder.


“As I said before, the only tasks I have for either of you is to ensure I get my mark alone. What you do with the others isn’t my concern as long as that requirement is met.” He waited on a reply and got none. He nodded, satisfied. “Now, we’re nearly at the location. We all know our parts. Three minutes until we commence.”


He waited only long enough for nods of assent, ignoring the one that seemed reluctant, and closed the comms. He pulled the red and black bow off of his back and tested the string. So much depended on the outcome of this venture, and his nerves were drawn as tight as the bowstring. He smiled, however. This wasn’t going to be easy, but he had no doubts at the result. Their mantra may be Solitary, Silent, Relentless, but they were the best of hunters. They would succeed, despite their unwillingness to hunt as a pack.

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Sometimes, the woman would close her eyes and let the forest deafen her. Each time, the sounds of it would wash over her senses in a wave, interspersed with ambient noises and, if she was lucky, voices and footsteps.


The bio-conversion had been long ago, and she had lived with these senses for most of her life, but with her eyes closed, she could just recall what it had been like before. When sounds and noise were not as much a part of her as her own breath, more familiar to her than her own sense of sight. How had she ever scraped along?


She sometimes wondered what she would have been, had certain things not happened, had certain choices been made differently. She would most certainly be long-dead, but how would she have spent her... wait...


She sifted through the sounds, ignoring the rushing rivers, the howls of the Kubrows, the noise of the conglomerate life that was the forests of Earth, and - there. A voice. Raspy, in a language she herself did not understand. She didn't need to; she needed only to know what it was. And there, the tread of metal-soled feet on the wet soil, the soft clinks of jointed steel.


She opened her eyes. Perhaps just over seven kilometers. Close. So very close.


She stood up, shedding her musings like a snake sheds its skin, and though no-one could tell from outside the horned helmet, she smiled. What happened was in the past; far more important was what was happening in the present. A pulse of reflected sound confirmed her earlier observations, and she drew a bow from her back, all sleek lines of white and gold. There was prey to hunt.

Edited by Tyranthius
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Let's pretend I know what I'm doing, alright?


Hissing, whirring, and clicking. The glorious soundtrack to a bored Tenno's life. One of these bored Tenno was lying in front of his navigation console, a perfect picture of Saturn in front of him. An electronic chirp startled him from tired thoughts, a synthesized voice followed as it always does. “Operator Brook, the system needs you!” Exclaimed the Cephalon. Brook groaned and turned on his side, brushing off what seemed like a criticism at this point. “But I’m tired! Haven’t slept in close to two days, Ordis.” The chirp again. “Then Ordis recommends you rest, Operator. In turn, Ordis will shut down and regulate minimal life support functions.” Some of the clicking shut off, and the lights dimmed. Brook stretched, and attempted to make himself as comfortable as one can when laying on metal. He glanced out of the viewscreen once more before falling asleep, Saturn was beginning to grow dark.

Brook was awoken by a sudden impact, he sat up and saw that whatever had happened had put them closer to Saturn. The chirp. “Operator Brook, it appears we were struck by a small piece of shrapnel. Scanners indicate a skirmish between a Grineer Galleon and a Corpus Freighter. Running diagnostics to determine the damage, diverting all reserve into life support and shields.” Brook nodded, and began to search for the battle. A flash of light brought his eyes to the remains of the skirmish. The freighter was smoking, the galleon was advancing towards it. “You figure it out, Ordis?” He was still watching the Galleon. “Ordis has located the damage. Minimal damage to hull integrity.” Brook nodded, the Galleon was right next to the Freighter. “Ordis, find a docking port, I’m going to help whoever’s on the Freighter.” 
The engines came to life, taking them out of their orbit and towards the Galleon. Brook began to prepare, he entered his Warframe and became Chroma, the dragon. He picked up his Magistar, it was all he needed. A raised part of the Liset’s floor rose up, retracted to either side and revealed a vaguely Tenno-shaped depression. He positioned himself into the depression and heard the magnetic locks as they secured him in place. The Galleon took up most of the viewscreen at this point. The chamber began to turn, he saw the blackness of space grow wider to replace the interior of his Liset. He was now perpendicular to the Galleon, close to a docking port. “Operator Brook, scanners indicate there are two Tenno inside. We may not be needed.” Brook raised his eyebrows at this. “Keep going, Ordis. I thought the ‘system needed me.’” 
He was inside the Galleon now, the locks released. Brook ran from the port to the next room, no Grineer. He ran through the rest of the ship until he came upon a large gathering of Grineer guarding what appeared to be an entrance into the Freighter. The Chroma ran at them, shouting to get their attention and blocking bullets with his Magistar when he did. “You remember anything about golf, you degenerate piles of crap? No? Let me show you!” Brook rushed a Lancer, swinging his Magistar into his head, which flew off, and continued the swing into a Butcher’s chest. The Chroma activated Effigy, letting the pelt take care of the rest of them. He ran into the corridor that took him into the Freighter.
He came upon a scene of carnage, an Ash was teleporting throughout the room and stabbing Grineer he happened upon. “At least they thought the same of the Grineer,” he thought. An Excalibur joined the Ash in the bloodbath, Brook ran to join them in combat with Grineer. The Magistar slammed into Grineer soldier after Grineer soldier, the floor around him became littered with blood and gore. The team moved through the rest of the Freighter, Brook was expecting more, but soon realized how much the Excalibur and Ash had really done. Corpus were patrolling the rooms they’d gone through, some jumping at the sight of the bloodied group. One of them broke the silence. “That was excellent, Darius! Find anything good?” Brook figured this was the Excalibur. “Thanks, Stephen, but no, nothing good.”

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By the way it moved, the Tenno was far beyond the concerns of the Grineer who watched.


The Chroma, surrounded by members of Steel Meridian walked with the kind of weight you would expect from a war-machine of its size, yet the sound was a muffled thud – practically inaudible over the stomping sounds of leather and metal from his escort. More and more members of the rebel Grineer faction moved to the sides of the catwalk as they watched the hunter take his position upon his liset.


“I hope you know what you are doing.” The Grineer female said as she looked the Tenno over once more, even as he climbed into the body mold of the docking port. The Tenno said nothing in return, perhaps more out of choice than a need to remain silent, but there was a turn of the head to show that he had turned his gaze on the Grineer pointedly.


Frowning, the Grineer leader felt an intrinsic need to step back and away from such a dangerous creature, but her pride kept her feet in place; an act of will that she would remember and be proud of for some time afterwards. She held that eyeless gaze for a moment and nodded, stepping back as the docking port turned and the Chroma was enveloped by the ship.


“Let’s go.” She ordered, gesturing to her guard and turned, walking away.



The insertion was a little more intense than most. On his Itzal Archwing, the Chroma rocketed towards the Corpus base at full speed, the flashes of power distorting the space around him as he flickered forward through proximity alarms, using stealth to cover visual sensors and continuing his approach. As the base drew ever closer, there was a twist, a boost and then a sensation of falling.


As his Itzal detached and returned to the Liset, the Chroma aimed his rapidly moving descent towards an external window and with a crash, his body shot through it to an open hanger. Hitting the floor, the Chroma rolled a few times before his heavy feet hit the metallic surface. Sparks flew up as the friction caused superheated particles to loose from the floor, and even as he was in full sliding movement, he was drawing a weapon, aiming for the surprised Corpus guards who were reaching for either a weapons or an alarm panel.


Twisting his body, the Tenno let the momentum and friction from one side spin him at the end of his momentum, his arm extending and in between his fingers, his glaive expanded and unfolded, spinning on a magnetic spindle as he turned his arm outwards. On the first rotation, he tore one of the guards in half, the second rotation severed a leg on another guard. Even as the last one was running towards the alarm console, the Chroma finished his spin by releasing the weapon, sending it spiraling through the air, bouncing off of the console itself and back towards the Corpus, decapitating the hapless cultist before returning to the Chroma’s outstretched hand.


“Maalkaris. Are you in?” The voice was in his head somewhere. It belonged to one of his fellow Tenno nearby.


“Of course.” He responded, rising slowly as he looked around.


The hanger was clear, aside from the chunks of meat on the floor. Looking behind him, long scratches in the floor mixed in with rising smoke from the burnt friction. He was in the clear for now, but time was not on his side. His equipment check let him know that everything seemed to be in place; An Opticor on his back, a Brakk on his hip and a Glaive on his arm. All of the weapons he was intimately familiar were a part of this mission, even though sometimes he felt as if his fellow Tenno might have judged him for being so familiar with non-Tenno equipment.


Let them judge him.


In the end, the only one who would stand victorious would be the one who could adapt.


Moving into the base, Maalkaris started his bloody task.


[Just a quick warm up while working! More to come later!]

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Call Of Thunder


Yancy stalked through the old galleon, her footsteps making slight scratching noises on the dusty floor. "40 years" the thought "40 years with a crew of 4...How did they keep their sanity?". The ship had been stationary in space for so long that it was nearly forgotten. Aigloblam had been digging into captured Grineer records Aero had brought back  months ago, and had seen some curious things. The ship had a registration number in a format that hadn't been used in over 200 years. It had been retrofit with thousands of force-cage cells, each only 8 by 8 feet. Its crew was listed as 4, a Commander and three Ballista, all three with criminal records that read like Encyclopedias of "What not to do in Grineer Society". Normal operating crew for a Galleon this size is nearly 90 soldiers. As if this weren't enough, Food supplies were delivered by Drone, only once every year.


Each of these facts by themselves would be worth an inquiry, but all together they were enough for a special task force. A one person task force. Of all the Tenno currently under Aigloblam's command, only Yancy would accept. She preferred to work alone. Her trigger fingers were always itchy nowadays, and she had caused enough collateral damage in her life to make Grineer generals proud. Any chance that she could be useful, without the possibility of injuring another Tenno, Yancy jumped at.


She had packed Light. Her Warframe had her most prized weapons already attached, Regulator pistols that folded from her Forearms. These had come from her father, and his father before him. They too had spilled oceans of blood in their long history. On her hips Yancy wore crisscrossed gun belts, each with a fully loaded Jagara pistol. The blades on the end of each barrel stuck out from the bottoms of the holsters. Yancy carried no Melee weapon, No Rifle. She never looked down upon other Tenno that went fully loaded into combat, but it had never been her style. Most of her brothers and sisters in arms had adorned themselves with Emblems, Sigils, Syandanas, and decorative armor in colors so loud their mere presence in a room broadcast their rank and power. Yancy wore none of these, and most certainly did look down upon the ones who did. They were nothing but enlarged jewelry, garish playtoys to announce to others "Look at me, I'm important!". Yancy cared not a whit for her appearance, she had never cared for anything more than absolute practicality. Her Warframe was unadorned, sleek and powerful. Over the years she had honed her speed and instinct to suicidal sharpness, to the point where she sometimes felt her own hands were traitors. They would sometimes draw and fire her weapons before her brain, fast as it was, had a chance to distinguish friend from foe. The two best friends she had ever known went down like this, a single hole left smoking in the forehead of their frames. She had been punished, of course. But her time doing these punishment missions, clearing out infested mining tunnels, had been nothing to her. The punishments she had inflicted upon herself were far worse than what the Council would consider "Cruel and Unusual".


Most of the lights in the Galleon had burned out years ago, some corridors were still brightly lit, but most had no more than flickering shadows. It was in a corridor like this where Yancy first started to hear the laughter. It floated to her as if whispered across an already noisy room. Others may have initially took it for their own imagination, but Yancy had very little imagination, and liked it this way.


She crouched and leaned against the dusty wall, sensors tuned to the slightest bit of movement, the merest hint of sound. Nothing other than the slow measured breathing of her own body could be detected. For several moments she crouched, frozen in place and waiting. For what she had no idea.


After satisfying herself that she was free to continue, Yancy stood. Her gun belts made quiet creaking noises. These were leather, and had existed far longer than any Tenno could have imagined. She had thought several times about the stories that these pieces of leather and brass could have told, of blood and thunder, of lawmen, of ancient beasts of Earth called Horses. But they had spilled blood, and that spoke for itself.


Finally reaching the bridge, Yancy found the door welded shut, only a rectangular hole a few inches across cut into the hardened metal. Light shone through, brighter than expected. Through the gap, she could hear the noises of the ships computers, a soft humming that was welcome to her after so many hours of total silence. Very slowly, Yancy knelt and peeked through the slot. The bridge looked much more open than she had been accustomed to. A large table sat in the center of the room, and 4 Grineer sat around it. They were each holding small cubes, staring down at the geometric arrangement of other such cubes on the table. Apparently deep in thought, one of the Ballistas placed her cube down beside another. Each of her companions appeared to gain more interest, leaning forward as the top of the cube began to flash single letters of the Grineer Alphabet. When the flashing stopped, the row of cubes lit up red, and a dinging noise was heard echoing through the room.

"Damn!" exclaimed the Grineer Commander, Slamming his fist against his armored leg in obvious frustration. "Thats twelve in a row...Im almost out of Chocolate!"


With a shrug the Ballista replied "Then you shouldn't boast so much. We don't have to play for bets...I just enjoy the game. And speaking of Enjoying, I believe you owe me something?"


The Commander grunted something about cheating, but got up and tapped a few buttons on one of the control surfaces. With her acutely tuned senses, Yancy heard a whirring noise echoing down the hallway. She looked around quickly, looking for a place to hide. She spotted a group of very thick pipes running down the length of the hallway. With a soundless jump, she flung herself straight up, Grabbing onto the pipes and quickly sliding her body on top of them. Less than 10 seconds later, the whirring noise showed itself to be a strange sight indeed!


Floating down the hall at walking speed, roughly 4 feet above the floor, floated a gold colored sentinel. It looked to be an unmodified Carrier model, and when it got closer, Yancy heard something else, a very quiet humming, coming from the gold sentinel. "No..." she thought to herself. From the Academy she had learned that sentinels used a kind of A.I. in the operating system, and that if these A.I. Chips were not removed before activation, a Sentinel would develop an actual consciousness. Did this little thing actually think for itself? Was it willingly serving Grineer? She waited for answers to this new troubling line of thought.


The Sentinel carried a tray, floating underneath it, with its magnetic beam system. On the tray was a single wrapped bar of chocolate. The Carrier slide the tray neatly through the slot in the door and after a few moments, removed the now empty tray and waited, floating just in front of the door.


The gruff commander's voice came once more from the bridge "Here is your f'king Chocolate. I swear one day I'm going to catch you cheating and feed you to the manics." Then a banging noise came from the door "Kadesh, stay put, You've got rounds in 15 minutes and we may just play another game...So get ready to bring me some of Dal's precious cookies."


The Carrier spoke "Yes, Sir Cal'a the Mighty". Its voice sounded subservient, and a bit fearful. The Commander laughed "And lets add "Magnificent" to that. Im getting a bit tired of just Mighty."


Again the little voice "Yes, Sir Cal'a The Mighty Magnificent"


Yancy's face split in a grin under her Helmet. This, she thought, Was her way in.




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Subterfuge (New Series)


Amidst a field of stars stood a massive monument to the Tenno will. An elegant yet empowering structure, the Relay glinted from the starlight as it laid a true testament to the resilience of the Tenno in this war torn system. To the common eye, there was nothing but empty space, for the Relay itself was shielded from all possible harmful eyes, in an attempt at maintaining the secrecy and mystery the Tenno were all too known for. If once looked close enough, perhaps they could see a faint flickering as Void energies swirled around the curved metallic surfaces, making the citadel seemingly vanish into thin air. The brilliant beams of light from the sun swathed the structure, bathing half of it in darkness and the other in a brilliant halo of fiery light.


It was this very Relay where a small ship was heading to. Far more utilitarian than the beautiful expanses of Larunda, one could see the ramshackled state of the vessel. Inside it, amidst the thrumming and hissing machinery sat six Tenno, patiently and silently waiting for the chance to step into the airy, serene innards of Larunda.


It was in Larunda where the Tenno Council was seated, far away from the outer reaches of the system. The Relay was the most defended of them all, following the successful attack of Vay Hek’s Balor Fomorian fleets. Those bulbous vessels had cut through several Relays with relative ease, somehow being able to see the citadels even through the Void shields that covered every inch of the Relays. Fortunately, there were no casualties whatsoever, which in itself was quite the blow to Hek. Now the Tenno Council decided to maintain a firm foothold at the centre of the system, close enough to the Grineer seat of power to be ready to counterattack, but far enough to remain inconspicuous.


Inside the shuttle, a woman sat away from the others, her lithe figure clad in the telltale form of a Banshee Warframe. Her hands were bound together by a band of pulsing energy, which reflected off the metallic surfaces and added some vibrancy to the monotonous shades of gray that overwhelmed the cramped interior of the Tenno ship. Her comrades were silent, and at first glance, she too seemed to share the solemn silence of the others. But one with keen hearing could easily make out the forced mutterings of the woman, the meaning behind those utterances unknown to all but her. Ivy green stripes adorned her black suit of armour, which beautifully accented the gentle white beams of light that formed the crests of her helmet. Her posture was quite odd; on one hand, it was indicative of submission, with her head bent and her knees drawn up to her armour clad chest, while still being defiant; shoulders tensed, fists clenched, breathing rough. One could easily see that she was not here of her own accord, else she might have preferred a more relaxed position in her seat.


She was a prisoner. Well, for a short while anyway. Bound against her will for the duration of a hearing, and free afterwards. So she hoped. If a judgment was passed against her...well...she wasn’t too keen on punishment. Inside her helmet, a scarred mouth twisted into a grin. Flashes of her past flew past her mind, sporadic flashes that were indicative of her blurred past. A little boy, body covered in bandages, laughing and squealing with glee as he played with ink, splattering the black liquid across the walls of the wood laden room. Her smile immediately vanished. The boy was a stranger to her now. She had no idea who he was. He was Tenno, that was for sure. No other race was forced to bind themselves in such coverings, save their eyes. The Void had left many of them...less relishing to the eye. She was no exception. She scoffed inwardly. A pair of eyes were the reason she was here in this predicament, bound and silenced against her will, hurtling towards what was no doubt a Council hearing. She hated formal procedures. She’d much rather be out in the field, scouting and sabotaging enemy supply lines like she always did.


As stray thoughts passed through her head wistfully, she was startled by a sudden rumble as the ship entered the gravity field created inside the relay’s docks. The rumble was from a series of clamps rising out of the ground and securing themselves to the bottom of the ship. She craned her neck to try and see out of the window better but to no avail. Her vision was currently blocked by the immense bulk of the man who was responsible for her current predicament.


Vanu. Stupid pig, she swore inwardly as the Frost lumbered down the central aisle of the ship, and released the door locks. With a soft hiss, the air pressure equalized and the door opened, letting in a rush of air and the sound one would associate from an average spaceport dock. The other Tenno silently filed out, leaving just her and Vanu inside the ship. She wished she didn’t have her helmet on, so that her scowl could be seen by the idiot.


“Well,” she barked, “are we going to move or are you just going to stand there, being an idiot?”


Vanu let loose an amused chuckle. Ever the rebel, he thought as he walked to the Banshee. He released the cuffs binding her arms to the chair and turned around. “Make your way out. I need to speak with someone. You know how it is. Try and escape and you’ll probably make it six feet. Considering you...maybe eight.” He chuckled again and trundled out of the ship.


She sighed, flexing her sore wrists. He was right of course. She couldn’t escape, even though she had every notion to try her damndest when she got the chance. Her legs were cramped up as she got up, letting loose loud cracks and groans as she made her way out of the ship. She could immediately breathe fresh air, as the hyper advanced air filtration systems of the Relay churned out air so fresh that it felt like the real deal. She breathed in deeply, saturating her lungs with the air, before being interrupted by the lumbering bulk of her captor.


“This way.”


She nodded and walked behind Vanu, idly looking around her surroundings as she surrendered to her fate. Security was everywhere, and her chances of escape only existed in an ideal world inside her head. F**k it, she thought. Whatever happens, happens.


The gentle clack of her armoured feet kept her company as she followed the Frost through a series of hallways, bustling with activity. Occasionally, a band of syndicate recruits would bump past her, masked faces shrouding their true identities. There were occasional bursts of activity as ragtag bands of Tenno performed acrobatics on the beautiful architecture of the Relay. Contrary to what one might think, such chaotic activities were promoted and cherished by the Tenno people, for it adhered to the tenets of Balance. Order would only become tedious if chaos and merriment ceased to exist. Fun was allowed, as long as those partaking in it did their duties as expected. She smiled inwardly as she saw a fellow Banshee cartwheel along a narrow ledge, several feet above her. The silver huntress dashed up a wall and flipped over gracefully, disappearing from her view.


The duo entered a small elevator at the end of a less crowded hallway, and silence enveloped them as they descended into the depths of the Relay. She saw runes carved into the walls of the elevator as it sped downwards, beautiful and elegant scrawls that highlighted the history of her people. There were scatterings of prosaic narratives of battles of individual Tenno, feats of honour that would remain etched for the remainder of the Relay’s existence. She could only keep up with so much; her Warframe was powered off thanks to a restrictive collar Vanu had placed around her neck. She was told that the object would be removed once the judgment of her hearing was passed.


Vanu grunted as the elevator finally stopped, door opening into a narrow series of hallways, lit sparsely with yellow lamps. The hallways had an almost reverent feel, as if they were entering a holy place. Her footsteps echoed alongside the dull thuds of Vanu as they walked past a series of closed doors, heading towards a large arched entryway at the end of the hallway. More Tenno runes were etched along the arch, a poem of what awaited her.


Be as clear as glass,

For inside a judgment will pass;

If guilty you are found,
Your sentence will be sound,

If honest you will be,

A simple decree you will meet.


She was taught this rhyme as a youngling, as she grew to accept that she was in fact a freak of nature and that her one true purpose in life was subterfuge and hiding in the shadows. Things seemed to come full circle now, as she walked through the archway, into a large room. Large was an understatement.


It was cavernous. A giant circular room with an ornate dias in the middle. Staggered rows of seats circled the dias, reaching eight rows up to the high ceiling. The loftiness of the gold adorned roof was shrouded in what seemed to be a gentle mist. Ornate pillars held the lofty ceiling in place while tendrils of light seemed to dance around the room, almost as if they had a life of their own. She began to tell herself to dispose of her anger towards the towering Frost besides her and instead focus on working her way past the hearing.


She was no silver tongued wordsmith, not by any means. She spoke like a simple soldier, but lesser in quantity than most of her comrades. The Council was comprised of the Elders as well as dozens of clan and guild leaders, nearly all of whom lived prestigious lives, for a Tenno. While their society was not driven by money or resources, experience and influence took paramount importance when it came to being part of the elite. Most of the people seated here were either too old to take part in active combat, or too influential to care about sticking their boots in the mud with the commoners. Inside her helmet, she pursed her lips as she scanned the room, enjoying the myriad of stories her mind came up with upon glancing at each of the faces in the room. Like her, they were also terribly scarred and bandaged, but it was a firm belief that the eye was a key to one’s true being. Tenno with disfigured faces learned sooner than later to communicate with their eyes far better than those with functioning facial muscles.


The Void had left her people terribly disfigured, ironically forcing them to hide behind beautifully sculpted suits of armour, that was like a second skin to them. Most of the councillors seemed to be victims of this affliction, bandaged and scarred faces everywhere. The Tenno in her immediate front seemed to be less affected by this, and from their clothing and appearance, she assumed they were the Elders.


Four pairs of eyes bored into her, their gaze friendly enough to not be threatening, but stern enough to make her clench her fists reflexively.


As soon as Vanu nodded at the assembled Councillors and made his way to the back of the room, the oldest looking Councillor spoke.


“Let us begin,” he said hoarsely, tufts of white hair wobbling as his mouth struggled to form the words.


A deathly silence filled the room as she felt all eyes on her. The Elder to the immediate right of the old man spoke up, her voice commanding but elegant at the same time.


“Tenno Tane, please remove your helmet so we may look upon your eyes.”


She gulped and nodded, reaching behind her neck to release the seals that hid her semi bandaged face from any onlookers. As the curved helmet hissed and came loose, a sweet smell reached her nostrils, due to which she distinctively inhaled it’s gentle scent.


A pale, scarred woman looked back at the assembled council, steely gray eyes confidently looking back, analyzing, plotting, waiting.


The female Elder smiled.


“We may begin this hearing.”

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And yet another...


Alternate Reality Intermission






He was used to the stares. He had worn the uniform for a long time but the reactions were always the same. Some people saw the uniform and felt awe. Others felt inadequate and reacted in a number of predictable ways. Petty insults or picking fights rarely got the reaction that people hoped for. Anyone stupid enough to actually assault an Orokin Marine without overwhelming numbers got what they deserved. He didn't mind that actually. Violence was what he had been trained for his entire life and he knew the limits. There were times for lethal force and there were times not for it. He was a Marine, not a random thug. So he dealt with the stares and snickers and minor insults as he always had. He ignored them as not worth his time.


Gunnery Sergeant Miguel Smith was tired. It had been a long day. He was too old for this, but he only admitted that in the deepest recesses of his own mind. No one else from Empress on down dared say a thing. He didn't have the reflexes or stamina for fieldwork now. So he ran a desk now. That sucked. Being on Avalon was worse in some ways. Every chance he got, he went back to the Tenno dojo that had once been his prison and now felt more like home than anywhere else. He managed to get his hands dirty working on things there. The Tenno understood.


He was also irritated. Of all the days for the power to fail in the Non Commissioned Officer's club! He had been looking forward to sitting down with a beer, maybe talking to some of the other NCOs. They were all young, kids mainly. But they all had what it took and more importantly, they knew when to listen and when to tell him to shut up. He had worked hard to get them to do that. They had all been in awe of him. Him! Not anymore. He hoped so anyway.


He shook his head. What would be, would be. No use dwelling on what had happened. That was for philosophers and religious types. Not Marines. His job was the now. And right now? He was seriously thirsty.


As luck would have it, he entered the concourse of the station just as the time shifted to the morning shift. He groaned inwardly. Marines worked any and all hours as needed. The rest of the station worked on the old Earth time scale. It made about as much sense as using any other frame of reference, he figured. So, many of the shops would be closing while most people went to morning duties, or went to sleep in the case of people who had late shifts. Many of the bars likewise were closing. The few that remained were twenty four hour deals and they mostly served crap. But he was really thirsty. He didn't need a beer. He wasn't an addict. But he did enjoy them. And he did need some downtime. He hated bureaucracy. And here he was, a frigging bureaucrat.


He started for the sole bar sign he could see still glowing. Maybe he would take his beer and go for a walk with it? These places got full fast, and they rarely cleaned up to anything even close to Marine standards. The NCO's club had space to stretch out and-


What the hell?


Miguel came to a sudden halt as he heard raised voices from just ahead. Then his eyes went huge as a tiny furred form came flying out of the bar to land hissing on the street in front of it.


Uh oh...


There were very few beings that Miguel respected without reservation. And fewer of those that he feared. The small calico furred form that stood hissing verbal abuse in 'cat' at the now closed door was one of those. Matril was not big. He didn't have to be. No one sane angered that cat. Miguel keyed a discreet alert to the Marine network in case he needed backup. He wasn't stupid. Then he stepped forward.


"Matril?" The Gunnery Sergeant put just the right tone of confusion in his voice. "What you doing on the sidewalk?"


"Drone said I got uppity!" Matril snarled but then relaxed. He liked Miguel. "That I was causing a disturbance. All I wanted a fracking beer! The NCO's club is off the grid." Not many knew that the cat was a sergeant. Those who did didn't really care. He did his job and deserved his few perks.


"Yeah." Miguel grunted. "I was hoping for a drink myself." Then he paused. "They threw you out?" Disbelief warred with worry. Matril had a temper. So did Miguel. But Matril had advantages Miguel did not. "A paying customer with actual credits?"


That was new. Avalon was seriously strapped for resources. Things had improved a bit since they had shown themselves to various groups. And now, the Orokin Marines were out and about, making messes and reclaiming resources at times. But the financial influx had not been huge. Actual credit spenders were a rarity on Avalon. One reason the Marines were welcomed in any shopping area. They had money to burn.


"They made a comment about fur." Matril admitted. "I bathe, all right. I don't have dandruff for them to be allergic to. Besides, Cecelia won't let me stay at the place if I come in dirty. They just wanted an excuse." Miguel had to smile at that. Cecelia was human, but she had taken in the cats and served as their mother in many ways. They were adults, but all liked her. Most of the time anyway. She acted more like a landlady with small apartments than a mother. When she heard about this, there was going to be trouble.


"So they threw you out?" Miguel shook his head.


"Drone did." Matril snarled at the door. "Didn't hurt, but geez!"


"That ain't right." Miguel said softly. "Sounds like a place neither of us wants to frequent. Anywhere else open?" He nearly begged.


"Three levels down, four over." Matril said quietly. Miguel looked at him and the cat shrugged. "Public information. Want to go? They didn't actually hurt me."


"Nah." Miguel looked at the door and shook his head. "It is the principle of the thing, you know?" Matril looked at him and Miguel smiled a bit crookedly. "They get away with such here, then they will think they can do it anywhere. Gets my boys and girls in trouble if they bust up some bar. They have enough problems."


"You sure?" Matril asked softly. "I can hack the drone when it doesn't take me by surprise."


"Yeah." Miguel held out an arm and Matril jumped up into it. "Do it."


"Done." Matril smiled with all of his teeth and Miguel made his way to the door and it opened for him.


He strode in without a glance to either side. The sudden silence that followed his entrance would not have been out of place in any assembly of Marines. They might not know exactly who he was, but everyone knew what the uniform was. Most of the residents of Avalon could read the insignia and put two and two together. From a few of the expressions he could see, several of the patrons were doing just that. Then they looked at what he held and went still. He walked up the bar and spoke calmly.


"Two beers." He declared. No one moved and he shook his head. "I ain't got all morning. Give me the beers or I am gone."


"That thing is not welcome here." The barkeep said firmly, then looked at the ceiling, Miguel did not. "What did you do to my security, you flea ridden-Urk!" He choked off as Miguel reached out with his free hand and grabbed him by the front of his collar, pulling him close.


"My colleague doesn't have fleas." Miguel said in a conversational tone. "And if you call him a 'thing' again, he may get irritated. If that happens? I am running." Matril snorted, but it was true. Anyone who could -on demand- manufacture his very own selectively powerful organic explosives made for a very scary person. Good thing Matril also had discipline.


"A demo specialist in a flat run outranks everyone." Matril's amused voice cut into the sudden silence. "Right, Gunny?"


"I ain't a demo guy, but yeah." Miguel replied evenly. "You want to serve two thirsty souls or are you going to be a jerk cause you can?"


"I have the right to deny service." The barkeep said as he tried to pry Miguel's fingers loose. He didn't succeed.


"That you do." Miguel replied evenly. "And I have the right to tell my boys and girls that you don't want to serve our kind." At that, everything in the bar just stopped. The barkeep paled. "Say the word, pal. And if you do, say goodbye to any credits from anybody in uniform." He released the barkeep and stepped away from the bar, still holding Matril. "Two lousy beers. Is it worth this for two lousy beers?"


"I think we should leave. Gunny." Matril said softly. "They won't serve us. Guess we better tell the others not to come here." Then he froze. "You." His voice carried to the side and Miguel turned to where three large men in laborer garb were watching. "In the back. Mind repeating that where everyone can hear?"


"I didn't say anything." The man in question paled.


"You make another comment about the Empress and you won't be talking for a while. Or eating anything that isn't piped through a tube." Matril said flatly. Miguel stiffened. The cat snarled. "Yes, my ears are that good."


"You were right, Matril." Miguel admitted. "Bad idea. Come on, let's go." He stiffened as the door was blocked by two large men. "And that is a worse idea..."


"This is our place, soldier boy!" The larger -and stupider looking- of the two said firmly. "You gonna leave in pieces, animal lover."


"It is gonna take more than the two of you." Miguel said quietly. Others in the bar were rising and he sighed. Then he smiled and lay Matril on the floor. "That is more like it." He cracked his knuckles. At the sight of the sergeant smiling, several of the patrons retreated. Others did not.


"The Empress may not know your kind but..." The larger one froze as Miguel suddenly seemed to swell. "Wha-?"


"That is twice." Miguel said softly. "Disrespect the Empress again and you are leaving this bar unconscious. Only warning." For a moment, it seemed as if sanity would suddenly break out. But then the barkeep straightened up, a Strun shotgun in his hand. Miguel tensed. "No guns!"


Before the barkeep could even level his shotgun, a table that had been vacated blew up. The blast wasn't large, just enough to reduce the table to pieces and not fling them far. No one was as much as scratched. Despite everything, Miguel was impressed. That was some skill.


"Security!" A loud voice declared form outside as several golden drones swooped into the room. "All armed personnel, drop your weapons!" The barkeep did. Others tried to look innocent, but scanners whirred and beamed of energy pinned several people in place. One as the man who Matril had fingered as disrespecting the Empress was held first. The beams flashed over Miguel, but he hadn't been carrying anything to go get a drink. This time anyway. They flashed red over a tiny form near one wall and Matril sighed and stood up.


"Can't very well drop them, they are part of me." Matril said quietly.


"Gunnery Sergeant. Sergeant." A familiar mournful voice spoke from the door and all eyes turned to see Michelle, Princess of Orokin, standing there. She wore sweats instead of a gown and she looked as if she had been working out. The Mag Prime warframe of Commander Petra, her chief bodyguard, stood behind her. "Do I want to know?"


"Was looking for a drink, Princess." Miguel said sadly. "But not gonna get one here. Our kind are not welcome here." He nodded to Matril and the cat jumped into his arms again.


"Oh." Michelle looked around and gave along suffering sigh. "I see. And you blew up the table... why?"


"He drew a shotgun." Matril said quietly, nodding to the barkeep who suddenly looked as if he wanted to be anywhere else as the Princess looked at him. "Don't know if he was going to aim at me or the Gunny. Doesn't matter."


"No, I guess it doesn't." Michelle sighed deeply. "Sergeant, gunnery sergeant. You will be hearing from the legists, I bet." Miguel grimaced but nodded.


"All I wanted was a beer." Miguel said sadly as he started for the door.


"Get out of my bar, you lousy animal lover!" The barkeep thundered, only to freeze as Matril leapt from Miguel's arms to land on the bar where he growled at the barkeep.


"I hope you are happy with your prejudices." Matril said with a snarl as he...


"Ew!" Michelle was hardly the only one to make faces as Matril made a mess all over the top of the bar.


"Princess!" The barkeep tried to swat at Matril, but missed. He made to sweep the mess off the bar, but froze as Michelle snapped at him.


"Don't touch those!" Michelle didn't -quite- scream. "Matril, disarm them!" At the word 'disarm', everyone who hadn't been frozen by energy or the Princess' glare darted for the door.


"Those are not armed." Matril replied. "He showed me his version of respect, I showed him mine." His grin was evil as he stalked for the door as only a cat could.


Miguel sighed and started off as well. But...at the door...


"He is not always a jerk." One of the patrons who had fled held out two full glasses to the pair of mismatched warriors. "It's been bad. For lots of people." He set one on the ground and held the other to Miguel. "A brawl would have been fun, but..." He shook his head.


"Yeah." Miguel took the glass and sipped. It wasn't as bad as he had feared. "We won't come back. And no Marines will likely be here again."


"Pity." The beefy guy said with a sigh. "But yeah. Gotta give respect to get it." He nodded to both Matril and the Gunny. Then he walked away quickly. Matril dipped a tongue into the glass and made a face, but drank.


"How much can you drink anyway?" Miguel asked. "You don't have size." Matril just smirked at him and Miguel sighed. "Never mind, silly question." 'Probably drink me under the table'. He muttered as he sipped.


"Yeah it was." Matril agreed. "We will want to get out of here though."


"Why?" Miguel asked, suspicion dawning that was heightened when Matril smirked again. "What did you do? Those aren't really live, are they?"


"No." Matril affected hurt pride as he started away from the still mostly full glass. Miguel set his down beside it. "But they are acidic." Miguel stared at the cat and the cat smirked wider. "They will eat through the bar top in short order and leave indelible stains. They spell out 'I love the Empress'."


"You..." Miguel couldn't help it. He laughed. He held out his arm and the cat jumped into it again. "You are sick, Matril."


"Guilty as charged, Gunny."



Some people read my latest story and asked for what happened to make Special Ops cat Matril such a fixture in the NCO's club on Avalon.


I dunno. What would tickle a bunch of Marines' fancy about a NCO in the form of a cat who can excrete explosives?


Better question: What wouldn't?



Edited by Kalenath
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  • 4 weeks later...

The Devil You Know?

The Orthos blade came down hard, cleaving a Grineer helm in two. Blood and brains mixed against the wall as she yanked the weapon free and spun to face the enemy closing in from behind her, the blade painting lines of gore along the walls and ceiling as momentum cleaned the edge.


“Watch your back!” the Nova screamed into her comms, catching sight of a Grineer Butcher rushing a squad mate from the corner of her eye. The Lotus hadn’t lied when she’d termed the mission a “nightmare”. The enemies were numerous, powerful, and, worst of all, prepared. She had no idea where their defenses had come from, but her and her teams’ energy kept draining away like water through a sieve. It was making them have to fight all the harder to clear the area of enemies. It seemed that no matter how many she and her squad cut down, enemies poured in to fill the gaps. The room they’d been backed into was large and filled to the brim with a sea of cloned flesh. The multiple entrances giving their enemies too many options to approach them, and the lack of choke points was making the Tenno have trouble gaining control of the tide of the battle.


“We need better cover,” the Frost on her left grunted, his Scindo held easily in one hand and the dismembered corpse of the Butcher who’d tried to cut him down laying in several pieces on the floor at his feet. Glancing around him at the amount of enemies who had him surrounded, he took his chance to spend his hard won energy on a snow globe before it drained way, giving his squad a much needed reprieve.


“Obviously,” growled out the Rhino who’d fallen back inside the cover provided by the globe. He wasn’t going to pass up the opportunity to catch his breath and fire his Latron at anything that ventured too close while he did it. “But I can’t see any easy exit, and without energy I can’t do S#&$. It won’t stick around long enough to keep them occupied with Stomp, and my Iron Skin may as well not even be there.”


“How do you think we feel?” the fourth squad member asked calmly. His eyes flicked down to his own weapons and his diminishing supply of ammunition. “But energy isn’t our only problem. Yes, there is a limit to how many Grineer are stationed here, but with this kind of resistance we can’t even venture out to scavenge ammunition from fallen enemies. We can’t hold out indefinitely, energy or no energy.”


The squad fell silent as each Tenno mulled over their own thoughts. It was some interminable amount of time before Acantha spoke up again.


“Maalakar,” she addressed the Frost, “you still have a few energy restores don’t you?”


“A few, for what good they’ll do us,” he replied, keeping a steady stream of fire concentrated on the nearest group of enemies. “Why?”


The Nova gestured towards the marginally deeper cover of the crates they were behind, “Drop one there, if you could. We’ll stay here long enough to gain what energy we can. Then, once we’ve gained as much as possible, I’m going to cast two wormholes. One up there,” she pointed up to a gantry high on one side of the room, “And one to the far door most of the troops are coming through. I’m going to go through the second one and Prime as many as I can in one go. Those of you with the most accurate long range weapons should stay up high and take out as many as you can from a safe distance. We won’t get long, so once I get too low on energy I’m going to break for that small room we saw getting here. It’s not far and we can hold out there longer than we can here.”


“And the rest of us?” The Rhino asked.


She shrugged. “The way I see it there’s three options. Keep up high where enemies here are going to have a hard time getting to you, follow me when I clear the exit, or make a break for the other side of the compound and hope we can split their forces in two and take this place more easily.”


The Rhino made a slow nod. “I vote splitting them up, it should make it easier on all of us, marginally. I’ll take one group, and Acantha can take the other. Worst case scenario we meet back up somewhere in the middle and hole up in a safer place. Who’s with me and who’s with the Nova?”


“I’ll provide cover for her. You take the Ash.” The Frost said, dropping his energy restore. “For now, you two stay up top. I’ll be right behind Acantha.” Here he looked at her, “If I fall behind keep going. I’ll rendezvous with you wherever you stop.”


She nodded, watching as the pulsing energy restore filled her constantly draining reserve. “Ready?” she asked a few minutes later, and her squad nodded. “Then let’s go.”


She cast two wormholes. The first two of her squadmates took to the overhead gantry and began laying down covering fire, waiting for the other two to move. A moment later, she and the Frost, Maalakar, had appeared over the heads of a group of startled Grineer and were dropping towards them. Acantha let a wave of antimatter envelop them as she fell, and a moment later a large portion of the troops were either vaporized or heavily damaged from the force of the resulting explosions. She let her melee weapon spin, cleaving enemies into pieces between casts of Molecular Prime while her squadmates picked off targets around her.


When her energy began to run out she spied an opening through the hallway and called, “Ok, move!”


She and the Frost darted into the relative safety of the corridor as the two other squad members headed in the opposite direction. She fervently hoped that their plan to split the enemy forces would work.


She slid into cover in a small room not far away, arrow nocked, and Maalakar slid in not three steps behind her. As he did, she fired over his shoulder at a pursuing Lancer, pinning the Grineer to a wall and killing him instantly. The following minutes passed as a gruesome series of horrible ends for the troops that stood against the Tenno. While the warriors still struggled against the lack of energy and overwhelming numbers of their foes, each team failed to be overrun as the troops split between them and the improved cover shifted the tide of battle in their favor. Acantha watched in satisfaction as the enemy count provided by the Lotus ticked down.


“Almost there!” Crowed the Rhino over her comm, she could hear the staccato sound of his Latron as he fired it in the background. All she heard from the Ash was satisfied laughter, and she knew his blades were sowing death among the ranks of their enemies.


Then the lights flickered. “Damn it all! Stalker!” One of the other team yelled.


They flashed again, “On me!” The Rhino growled. “Finish the mission first, we can hold him.”


“You sur-,” Acantha started, only to be interrupted.


“Impossible!” The Ash yelled, “He’s on me. Learn to read your comms Damon!”


“I’m telling you, he’s on me!” Damon roared.


Acantha looked sideways at Maalakar, then cast a Wormhole past him, through an open door towards the other pair of Tenno. “Go support them, I’ll be right behind you.”


The Frost nodded as the lights flickered one more time, and disappeared through the shimmering silver opening in space. Acantha stepped forward to follow him, looseing an arrow at a nearby Grineer in the process, when she felt a kunai whine past her and embed itself in the floor near her foot. She twisted instinctively and nocked another arrow, then froze when a monstrously distorted voice spoke through her comms.


“You cannot escape you past, Acantha.”


A pool of smoke rose up from the floor, and a dark shape stood up from a kneeling position within it.


The Nova’s blood ran cold. “Qarin,” she told her Djinn with a calm she didn’t feel, “contact the dojo. Now.” She then opened a channel to the rest of her squad. “I’ve got a Stalker on me as well.”

A Stalker…” she heard the Frost respond. “What the hell is going on? I’m on my way back to you.”


“No!” her voice came out sharper than intended. “If I’m right they’re dealing with two of them. Go help them first, then come back to me.”




She cut him off as the menacing figure stalked towards her, “Don’t argue. I’ve faced their kind before, I can survive until you get here. Just hurry.”


She didn’t bother listening further as her opponent charged her, dark Scythe blade flashing. Her parry was hasty and sloppy as she hurried to switch weapons. Her Orthos’s unwieldy length was the only thing to her advantage as she strove against the heavy weapon of the Stalker. However, he managed to wield his weapon with a lightness and speed that seemed supernatural, even for a Tenno, and she had to rush to dodge and attack in return. For all of her effort she barely managed to nick him in the frantic series of blows that followed, and he was still pushing her farther and farther back towards the wall.


After a while, he began to laugh.


The Nova grimaced, panting. “What’s so funny monster?” She demanded of it through the channel it had forced open on her comms, not expecting any answer, “Are you not used to so much opposition from a lone Tenno?”


Before she had no space to work with she laid the weapon across her shoulders, flipped through the air, and roared as she brought the weapon down in a massive arc for a heavy blow. The move had been intended to knock him back and buy her room to maneuver, but he stepped backwards, deflected it with ease, and trapped one blade of her weapon under his foot as it clanged against the deck plates. “I can read your every move. Do you really think you stand a chance? Submit, and be free of this delusion you’re living in.”


She looked up at him in confusion, “Delusion?” She tugged hard on her weapon, attempting to free it. “You think you know me demon?” She growled and pulled harder when the blade refused to come free, “You’re sorely mistaken if you think to judge me when you hunt your own kind. You make me sick!


The Stalker growled back and stepped down harder on the blade. The combination of leverage from the Nova attempting to pull it free and the downward force the Stalker was applying to it caused it to snap with a sharp crack. The sudden lack of resistance made Acantha stumble backwards, nearly into the wall. “You do not know of what you speak! I know you better than you think! You stand against me, when you should be standing with me!”

Never!” she screamed, confused and revolted, and swung her now off balance weapon towards her foe. With no apparent effort, he swung his heavy blade down at the haft of the weapon, between her hands, and cut it in two. Having been expecting resistance and being met instead with none, her momentum carried her forwards and she stumbled.


Against all her expectation, instead of a blade coming up to meet her she felt a hand catch her elbow and steady her. She looked down at the red and black gloved hand in revulsion, and ripped herself away.


“You would really treat your own brother this way?!” She heard hurt in his voice, and wondered at it. “Your own flesh and blood?!”


“You are no brother of mine!” she snarled in return, her confusion mounting. Her Orthos was ruined, but she wasn’t about to give up. She shifted her grip and her stance and held one half of the weapon in each hand. “You think I’d fall for such a trick? No true Tenno would act as you do, and my own brother was an honorable man! Not some misguided, murdering fool! You can claim no kinship with me, either as blood kin or Tenno!”


She slashed at his legs, hoping to knock him off balance, but a backhanded hit from his weapon sent her sprawling.


Out of nowhere, Qarin jumped into the gap, his Stinger rifle firing. “You will not harm my Mistress!” he yelled, but his valiant effort did nothing. With a laugh and an offhand swing, the red and black clad monstrosity caught the little machine with the end of his blade and sent him to the floor. As Acantha watched, the Infested parts of his body twitched feebly a few times as his mechanical parts sent off a few sparks, and then were still.


“Qarin!” She screamed, feeling tears blur her vision. “You bastard!” She leapt to her feet, the remains of her weapon in hand, and charged the one responsible for the destruction of her friend. “You cold, heartless bastard!”


One swing caught the Stalker on his right bicep, drawing a line of blood. The other swing went wild, sending up sparks as it deflected lengthwise against the blade of the Stalker’s Hate.


“Is it really this hard to make you see?” He demanded, his voice now a low menacing hiss as he defended against her furious attacks. “Is it really so hard to believe I tell you the truth!?


He crouched low and swept his weapon across the floor at her feet. She jumped over the weapon, but didn’t see as he twisted and knocked her out of the air, sending her to the floor yet again. “It’s just like old times isn’t it? You struggle and struggle, but I always win.” He said, pressing one foot against her chest and holding the tip of his weapon against her throat. “And yet, you still don’t believe me, do you? I guess I shouldn’t be so surprised, it has been a very long time.”


She struggled against his weight, trying to eel out from under him, but went still as his free hand went up to the back of his helmet. She heard a hiss as his Warframe depressurized, and watched with a kind of horrified fascination as his face was revealed. He had brown, almost black, hair that was cropped close to his head in a military fashion, revealing pale skin, and the sharp, painfully familiar, features of his face. Some things had changed, though. He had a scar that ran across his right eye, but it didn’t seem to impair the almost unnaturally green eyes of his gaze.


He said nothing, just grinned. The expression reminded Acantha of an illustration she had once seen depicting a character called the Mad Hatter. It revealed a few too many teeth, and she didn’t like the gleam that sat somewhere deep in his eyes. “You’re insane. I thought you were dead, or still lost in cryo, but you’re just insane. What happened to you?” She breathed, overcome. Then she screamed.


Still holding his scythe to her throat, he shifted his foot to her wrist and pressed down until she was forced to release her grip on one half of her ruined weapon. He calmly reached down and took it, then threw it aside. Moving to her other side he repeated the process.


“Don’t worry, you won’t need these anymore.” He told her, still smiling a somehow broken smile. “It’ll be alright little sister, it’ll be just like old times, you’ll see.”


Her mind whirled, her eyes locked on his face. She didn’t know what to feel, and her emotions were so various and confused she couldn’t make sense of them. Oddly, as much as she was feeling at once she only felt overwhelmed and oddly blank.


He moved on from her ruined Orthos to her Despair, “Naughty girl, stole these from us did you?” he made a “tsk” noise in the back of his throat, “That’s alright, it puts you ahead of the curve at least. And look at that, our bow too? You were always good with those.”


She growled and bucked underneath him, trying to get free when he went after her bow, but his strength was greater than hers. When he allowed the tip of the scythe to make a warning prick against her neck, she reluctantly went still. She knew he didn’t want her dead, but her Warframe’s life support systems would keep her alive, even from a mortal wound, long enough for him to move her and stabilize her and she couldn’t have that. He may be her brother, but he was obviously deranged. She needed to be whole enough to fight as long as possible, if only to buy herself time.


He also didn’t seem to realize that she could hear some of the battle raging between the three other members of her squad and the indeterminate number of other Stalkers they faced through her comms. They seemed to be struggling, but managing. She hoped they’d hurry, or… the alternatives didn’t bear thinking about.

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  • 1 month later...

Note: while most of these seem to be in the third person form, I like to get fully immersed when I play warframe, so this is gonna be through the eyes of my tenno as they do what they do best. 


I could barely see.


Sitting on the floor, a pistol in my hand, flinging bolts of death at my foes, I sat slowly bleeding out, life fading, vision darkening more and more by the second. This mission was a flop, I thought to myself. Two of my teammates had already been killed on this Trial, as we called it. The title definitely fit. Suddenly, among the darkness, I saw a faint green light, my vision returned, and I suddenly felt fully reinvigorated. A volt stood over me, his hand stretched out, shields surrounding us in three directions from enemy fire. Finally, I felt the strength to stand back up, and I exchanged the furis in my hand for a gleaming latron prime. Under normal circumstances, we would have continued with the mission, but Trials are difficult with 8, and with fewer, we had little chance. The only option was to flee. I stood back to back with the volt who had just saved me, both of us letting fly with explosive fury from the muzzles of our rifles. Through my helmet I saw wave after wave of grineer fall to the floor in agony, or without any feeling at all. We made progress, 40 meters to the extraction point, a mag to my left was incinerated in a column of flame, three napalm standing over what used to be her body. The stench was horrible, the heat nearly as bad. I saw a flick of motion to my left, a grenade thrown from the arm of a lancer. I countered with a shot to his shoulder, but it was too late as both the unnamed volt and myself were flung in opposing directions. I rose, but he did not. A rage started to build within me. I couldn't explain it, I barely knew this volt, yet he had saved me and I felt an inexplicable, indescribable gratitude. Now he was dead. The melting pot tipped, and spilled over, I raised my hand and the many grineer around me rose with it. I saw the bodies of my allies, and lifted them even higher. I held them, red energy swirling violently around them, and the ground at my feet began to burn with a hallowed flame. Few grineer remained on the ground, but those who did were met with my left arm, burning them to death from the inside out, then spreading to their friends. I had enough of their cries of alarm, and with the lowering of my hand all of them flew to the ground and perished. I and a young excalibur remained. He was wounded at first, badly, but standing on the fire at my feet seemed to help. I looked about the remains of the chaos, poison once again filling my lungs from the removal of a rejuvenation. I turned to face my liset, the excalibur did the same, and as I left, I told my cephalon that he had better make permanent memorials of all the fallen tenno, beginning with volt. Otherwise I could find someone else to do it. He responded with an annoyingly chipper" of course, operator", then I felt his presence leave us as we flew into the endless darkness ahead. 

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  • 2 weeks later...

Blergh. First stories I've written in a looooooooooooooong time. Just a start though, for now.


Rookie Tenno

Kairy woke up in her new liset, sweat beading her forehead as she looked over to the timekeeper display besides her. Six hours. At least that was better than the two ‘nights’ before.


She got off the makeshift bed she had made in the lower deck and removed her undersuit. Lisets truly weren’t made for living in them, but what else could a clan-less and more recently master-less tenno do? Live on board one of the relays? The relays where the Lotus kept things like Zack the silver Rhino?


She shuddered as she got in her arsenal chamber, splaying her arms wide as the hard-light emitters of the chamber washed the dried sweat, dirt, and grime off her body, before the mechanisms of the chamber put her into one of her extra undersuits.


She looked over to her left, more specifically at her left wrist, or the stump where her hand should normally have continued on from the wrist. A deep breath was all she could do to brace herself as the chamber put her prosthetic hand in place, the jolt from its artificial nerves connecting to her own was a not-so-friendly reminder of what she had lost.


As the chamber’s hard-light emitters went on to trim her hair to the short style she preferred, the last hygienic preparation before she, with assistance from the chamber, put her warframe on.


“Master? Do you have a mission you’d like me to take you to?” her Cephalon, Arda, questioned.

“Not really…” Was all that Kairy could say in response. She flexed her left hand, opening and closing it as she got the feeling of the artificial grip. “I just need somewhere to be… somewhere other than being cooped up in my liset…” she scoffed at herself, already talking about what her old master owned as hers…


“Arda. Could you perhaps look for open clans, preferably ones accepting of freshly trained Tenno and/or looking for medical personnel?” She said as she kneeled down in her meditative stance in front of her navigation console. ‘And also with a lot of people, so monsters don’t roam amongst them.’ She added, but only in her thoughts, as she knew that Arda wouldn’t understand the request.


“Searching…” The Cephalon obediently replied, filtering clan and dojo listings. First by the requirements Kairy had used, and then again through a completely different set of filters, incorporated into the Cephalon by its past owner.

“There are three clans that seem suitable for you. Any further filters?” Arda voiced out, breaking Kairy’s zoned-out meditation. “Hmm… which one has the most people?” she asked, using the question as the filter Arda wanted.


“The clan Aequitas is the only one falling within the new parameters: unlike the other two clans, it has over 300 combat-able Tenno listed, followed by over 1000 non-combatants: Dojo caretakers, architects, medical personnel, foundry personnel, initiates and more.” Arda chimed, sounding glad with itself having finished up Kairy’s request in less than a minute. Then the Cephalon went on: “Its official demeanor states that all are welcome within their halls. The clan itself boasts of multiple claimed, tested, and battle hardened Warlords which control the clan together as a council. The clan’s roster includes a grand master of the forge, several grand masters of combat, multiple primes, as well as a grand master of the dkjzxoilxxzxkljflskdjsa.”


Kairy looked at the liset’s monitors, confused over the Cephalon’s scrambled word. “Arda. Repeat that last vocalization?” she commanded hesitantly.


“Master of the dkzjkxlkjdaskjljklkjxx….” The Cephalon’s vocal emitters repeated, the vocalization devolving into a pure garbled mush at the same point.


“That’s odd…” Kairy looked over the monitors, going over the data manually, only to find that Arda’s list had somehow been corrupted and that last title was as impossible to decipher as it was impossible for the Cephalon to vocalise it.

"Weird... maybe it would be worth looking into joining this Aequitas clan… or at least check them out before any rash action…” The white-and-blue trinity pondered as the liset flew on through space.


Champion of the damned, prologue

Sitting on his knees alone in the darkness let him focus, focus on his breathing, on the invisible specks of dust floating around, on the whispers of the two lotus crewmen stationed by the door, his “guards”, so to speak.


“I don’t get why a squad was sent to check out the derelict they found him in. I mean, the archives had it listed, as well as the reason why it was stricken out of the star charts.” One of them squeaked out, the male, 165 centimeters in height and weighing around 170 pounds.


Zack had noted, through careful observation over a few hours, the guard’s position, routine, personality, habits, physical qualities and armaments through observations of the demeanour in his voice, the reverberations between the door and him and ambient sound-qualities; all that through the 3 inch thick metal door.


“Beats me. You know the information about that is above our station.” His partner responded, a male guard around 180 centimeters in height and weighing 200-…. No, weighing 190 pounds. That prosthetic leg was lighter than a regular one.


He flexed his shoulders to alleviate the dull ache this position gave him when his frame was unpowered, and chuckled inaudibly. That was a new guard. The Lotus was switching their shifts with a seemingly random pattern. Seemingly being a key word there. He had started seeing a pattern unfolding here, but he would not risk escaping yet. She wouldn’t understand this all being a game to him.


He smiled to those thoughts. His awakening, now that had been a challenge….



        ------- Three months ago, on board derelict 37-Gamma-Z, “Asphodel”, Grineer expedition 4956-a -----


The expedition had been approved off by high-command a few weeks before, and a scouting force had been sent ahead through the torsion gate, once its functionality had been proven.


They had the orders to secure a forward command base aboard the derelict. Their boss, Councillor Krim Jongu, had spent unfathomable fortunes getting information about this one. This derelict would be the gold mine that would send his gene-research above Tyl Regor’s and grant him greater favour with the queens than Captain Vor would ever have.


An Orokin derelict rumoured to hold almost a thousand Tenno cryopods in forced stasis. A prison vessel.




The commander of the first squad, Pikk, was the last of his group to go through the gate, ending up in a darkened and unpowered derelict.


“Status report!” He beckoned out to his perimeter scouts.

“Energy readings negligible.” Came from one. “Artificial gravity present?” called another surprised. “Oxygen levels breathable! No pathogens in the air. No need for our own life support.” A third scout reported, to Pikk’s relief. He had not wanted to waste more resources than necessary.

“Life supports off.” He commanded, as his lancers regrouped.


“Alpha team, you take that corridor. Bravo, you take that one. Delta, you fortify our entrance. The rest is with me.” Pikk commanded, the squadrons within his group forming up, ten lancers in each group with a contingent of a heavy gunner and a ballista each, with Delta having a couple of bombards in addition to their standardized squads.


“We need to restore the power here to open the gate on our side and send finds back-” Pikk’s words stopped in his throat as the lights went on by themselves.

“Neural sentry? Awake Tenno? Hostiles?” A few called out, only to be calmed down by Pikk.

“Move out!”




Unknown to the Grineer, the numerous podded Tenno spread throughout the derelict were all released from their stasis at the same time the few lights that were still usable went on.




A silver rhino broke through the laminated glass of his former prison, dragging himself out of it and crashing down onto the floor. His mind was dull but he could feel his senses awakening.


A fight. Carnage. Massacre. Mayhem. Death. Destruction. Taken. Judged. Found guilty. No remorse. Removed. Stasis. No more stasis? How long?


He looked around the small white room he had found himself in. His frame was active? He stood up hesitantly, feeling the weight melt off his body as the exoskeleton that was his warframe supported its own weight. He had missed that feeling.


Free? Where are the keepers?


He wondered, as he slowly walked over to the far-wall of the room, a numbness pouring out of his legs as he felt them again.


Just as beautiful as when I left you. He thought as he picked up the Gram blade that was propped up on the wall. No. Not A Gram. His Gram.


Armed. Free. Alone? No, probably not. Exile ship. Not only one punished. Last one. One-thousand three hundred and seventh. Last one warranting an exile. Orokin are weak cowards.


He almost couldn’t contain the grin forming on his face as he regained control of his facial muscles.


Mistake sending me here. A mistake creating the perfect hunting grounds. If they ever wanted any of us back....


He walked over to the door, dampening his footfall as he felt his instincts kicking in for the first time in a long time.


Time to hunt.

Edited by Pyjamalama
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  • 2 months later...

So quiet here now...


The armored boot bit deep into her wrist, but she refused to cry out. This was wrong, it was all wrong. Her gaze seemed drawn to the fallen form of Qarin, and she felt tears choke in her throat.


Matteus let out a broken, satisfied chuckle as he tossed the last of her weapons away. “Now then, shall we go, sister? Our future awaits.”


He reached for her upper arm, his scythe’s blade still held to her throat.


She waited until he had to move the blade up and away from her to secure his hold, and before he could do so she twisted and rolled, kicking out at his shins as she moved. It was all in vain however, he still knew her too well. Shifting his stance he let her roll, avoided the blow, and when she was prone, belly down on the floor, he jammed his knee into the small of her back and wrenched her left arm up and backwards. The vents on the back of her warframe prevented him from pulling it up far enough to dislocate her shoulder without damaging them too, but the pain was still incapacitating. Another cry tore from her lips.


It was then that an unexpected voice spoke from seemingly nowhere, and through his warframe Matteus felt the cold of a rifle barrel pressed to the back of his head, where his spine met his skull. “Let go.”


The Stalker growled incoherently and shifted his weight slightly, preparing to move. It was a basic thing to get out of the hold he was in and the set of movements required was a basic part of Tenno training. All that was necessary was for him to abruptly drop down and forwards, then sweep his arm out to push the gun barrel away and thus free himself from the threat, but he never got the chance to move.


At the first twitch of the Stalker’s movements the Ash Prime warframe materialized out of stealth behind him, one wrist blade extended and pressed to his back, just behind his heart. He let the blade press forwards, not quite drawing blood, but almost piercing both the living technology of the Stalker’s warframe and the flesh beneath.


“Let go,” he repeated. The voice was cold, emotionless. But Acantha couldn’t help but find it familiar. When Matteus made no move the Ash let the blade slide forwards a hair more, slitting a small hole in the Stalkers frame and just touching the skin beneath. “Don’t push your luck, A******.”


The next moments happened in a series of flashes that happened in seconds.


The Stalker spun, drawing a fine line of blood across his own side and chest as he turned and scraped himself along the Ash’s wristblade, twisting free of both the threat of gun and blade.


 Acantha, freed of the hold she’d been under as her brother moved to confront the newest threat, wasted no time flipping over onto her back and then jumping to her feet despite the pain in her arm and shoulder. As she did so she saw the scythe, Hate, glint in the half- light as her brother brought it up to swing. To her horror she also saw the Ash who had come to her aid be too slow to move.


Weaponless, she threw herself at the monstrous form that was her only family and wrestled for a grip on his left arm. His sword arm. He pushed her back hard into the wall behind them, and turned to confront the other Tenno, but her distraction had been enough. This time the Ash was ready. However, Acantha felt a pit of dread open in her stomach when she got her first good look at him. He was armed with next to nothing. A Skana, a Lato, and a Braton. He would stand little chance with the Stalker now aware of him and able to nullify his powers, such as stealth, which were his greatest assets, and be lucky to be able to damage him at all.


She doubled over in a fit of coughing when she tried to rise from against the wall. Matteus had thrown her against it hard enough that is was now painful for her to so much as breathe. She feared she had cracked ribs or worse. Her warframe would be able to heal the damage in time, but she wouldn’t get that long. Things were still going badly.


She felt as if she were in her own personal hell as she watched the mismatched fight between her brother and the Ash. The Stalker was a study in brutal, efficient, and heavy attacks. He couldn’t, or wouldn’t deign to, match his opponent’s speed which was all that was keeping the Ash alive. But he didn’t need to. The fight was heavily weighted in Matteus’ favor and he knew it. All too soon the Ash stumbled and the Nova saw Matteus raise his Hate high in preparation to strike his target down with one blow. As the heavy blade fell with a sort of inexorable slowness, she threw herself in front of the wickedly sharp metal edge.


It felt cold when it pierced her shoulder, ripping a large gash in her already heavily damaged Warframe and her flesh beneath. Blood dripped from the wound as the weapon was pulled free, and she slumped to the floor, shock and pain stealing away her ability to move. She heard her brother scream.


What have you done?!” His voice was laced with anguish. “Look what you’ve made me do!”


He lashed messily and desperately out at the Ash, who danced backwards. With another cry of rage and pain, he dropped the scythe he held and threw kunai instead. The heavy knives hit his opponent first in the right shoulder, then the abdomen, and then finally in his upper left thigh sending him staggering backwards and to the floor. That that dealt with, Matteus hit his knees at his sister’s side where she lay belly down in a growing pool of her own blood, staring sightlessly again and the fallen carapace of her Djinn.


The Stalker rolled her over, tearing her eyes away from the sight, and pressed his hands against the wound. Her fresh blood staining his hands a garish shade of red.


“No, no, no. This wasn’t supposed to happen.” He muttered, senselessly. “Don’t worry, I’ll get you home, you’ll be okay. The Menders will see to you.”


She saw him stand as her vision began to fade. He held his right hand over her, and she saw his palm, dripping crimson, begin to glow orange. Digitation… she managed to think feebly as her ability to form coherent thoughts slipped away. Damn it all.


There were voices speaking urgently over her comms, but she could barely hear them. They sounded so far away. She wondered what had happened to the rest of her squad, but couldn’t raise any emotion about them. That lack of feeling felt vaguely wrong to her, but she couldn’t dredge up why. The metal underneath her felt more soft and warm with every passing second, and her eyes began to drift closed.


The last thing she remembered was a brief din, some gunfire, and then her brother’s scream. Of rage, pain, or triumph she didn’t know. As the scream echoed into silence her heartbeat slowed, and she went willingly into the dark.

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