This subpage of Attero Dominatus covers the campaigns of the Tyranny in the Andromeda Galaxy against factions such as their blitzkrieg against the Andromedan Galactic Commonwealth, their war against their revolting slaves, and even their runin with the Dominion of the Xhodocto. This page is ordered chronologically, then spatially, meaning it is first divided into years, then into the theaters of war. Battles are delineated by the title of "The Battle of x" , while everything else is non combat. Different theaters have different names and different purposes, and some action in some theaters may also involve different theaters or subplots.
- GreatDestroyer12 (Participant, Administrator, Creator)
- Monet47 (Participant)
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- Xho (Participant)
See also: Scorched Earth Campaign
22nd Exahydron Edit
See also: The Supremehydron
Though the Dominatus were at the peak of their military power in late 2791, they had lost a substantial amount of their industrial power in the Revolts of December 21. Without hope for reinforcements or resupply, the Tyranny's numerous fleets were tasked with the quelling of the insurrection. In Andromeda, Gravius Gnissenkrassau had managed to reassert control over roughly half of the Tyranny's former colonies, securing for his armada of tens of thousands of Mark 2 ships a steady supply of fuel and other necessary resources.
Gravius' position was precarious, however: the Tyranny's lack of resources meant that he could not afford adequate protection for his supply lines. Gravius also had to keep a constant eye on what could, at any moment, become his front with the Andromedan Galactic Commonwealth.
People's Liberation Army Edit
Main article: People's Liberation Army
Ikeben's army had grown exponentially since its establishment in early 2792 on Quaran. It now contained hundreds of thousands of warships of varying shapes and sizes, built by repurposed Tyranny infrastructure made accessible by a program developed by the Draconid Imperium. Unlike the Tyranny's supply lines, the PLA's flowed well and were well guarded.
The PLA's ship designs had been bought from the Draconid Imperium, which meant that they were inferior in technology and size when compared to the Tyranny's vessels. However, the PLA did have one advantage: jump drives. It was costly, but Ikeben managed to procure for his ship faster-than-light drives that instantly transported a ship from point of space near a gravity well to another within a certain range. These had the added benefit of being immune to interdictors, and virtually untraceable. While extraordinarily useful from a tactical perspective, they were taxing on the ship's power systems, and had to be charged up before a jump could be executed, a task that could take minutes. After a jump was executed, the drive had to cool down before executing another jump or risk taring the ship apart. All of this meant that all but the smallest of spaceborne vessels were equipped with ancillary hyperdrives for long voyages.
This address was broadcasted by Gustavus Ikeben, Coalitionary General of the United Free Peoples Coalition as an attempt to get the Gigaquadrant's superpowers to support his attack on Dominatus territory.
"People of the First Gigaquadrant, lend me your ears.
I am Gustavus Ikeben, elected leader of the United Free Peoples Coalition. I represent hundreds of billions of freed slaves formerly held under the iron hand of the Drakodominatus Tyranny, and those trillions of souls that were not so fortunate.
It hasn’t been long since the failure of the Domintus’ control chips––an event that set us free and brought the Tyranny to its knees––and already the aggressor is on its way back up, preparing to counter attack.
In this moment, the Tyranny is weak. Our uprising has managed to cripple the Tyranny’s industry, to scatter its fleets and leave them stranded without the ability to refuel; but to say that it is permanently crippled is a grievous mistake. As I issue this message, thousands of Tyranny battleships are sweeping back over freed worlds like a black tide, drowning our brethren mercilessly as punishment for their defiance.
As things currently stand, it isn’t a question of if the Tyranny will regain its former colonies, but when. But, these questions are irrelevant. We stand at a crossroads, and the questions everyone should be asking themselves are these:
Will the whole of the First Gigaquadrant stand by and let the Tyranny recover?
Will it let this window of opportunity pass, thinking that the Tyranny will eventually cease its rampage? Does it think that the Tyranny can be contained, reasoned with?!
If the answer of any of these is yes, I will be the first to tell you that you are wrong.
The Tyranny will not stop, it will not cease to expand when it has defeated and annexed the whole universe, it will move on to others, and others still! It is an unstoppable war machine whose thirst for bodies and territory will never be quenched.
There is only one way to stop it, and that is to destroy it. Right now, right here, there is a golden opportunity, a golden window that is rapidly closing as the Tyranny moves to recover its lost assets.
I ask you to intervene.
I ask all of you to stop standing by as the Tyranny slaughters billions and enslaves trillions. I ask you to stop waiting until it is too late, and it’s your turn to defend yourself against an unrelenting aggressor that could have been struck down in a moment of weakness long ago, but you in your fear were unwilling to move a finger to take advantage of it.
With this message, I intend to be the first in a long line of nations to formally declare war on the Drakodominatus Tyranny. I intend to fight without reserve until the Tyrant lies prostrate at my feet, or until I die, cornered, helpless, and alone in some distant corner of the universe.
I hope you do not suffer the same fate."
The Way of GustavusEdit
The liberated slaves in Andromeda knew that to engage the Tyranny head-on was suicide. The fact that they outnumbered the Dominatus ships a hundred-to-one was of little comfort, for they knew of the sheer might the Tyranny could bring to bear in a single well-aimed broadside. If the Tyranny could pin their fleets down in a single location, they would be annihilated within instants.
Although the situation looked bleak, Gustavus Ikeben knew that he could still tear victory from the gaping maw of defeat, even when faced––especially when faced––with an opponent superior to him in every single conceivable way. The Tyranny believed that the only way to fight was in set-piece battles, where two belligerents stood toe-to-toe and the best of the two won. He knew that he could not fight the honest and simple way. Instead, he was to employ strategy dictated not by brute force and sheer numbers, but by fluidity, attrition, and deception. He knew that if they were going to survive this war, he would have to do things his own way.
Scorched EarthEditWritten by: GreatDestroyer12
After the encounter which could easily have led to the destruction of his invading fleet, Ikeben slowly heard that the Mark 2 fleet was forming a solid wave of ships in order to conquer the space of the FPC. He knew then, that the objective was although in the long term to preserve his infrastructure, that in the short term, it was imperative that he stymie the Tyranny's forces. He knew that the Tyranny expected him to engage his forces in static defense against the Tyranny fleets, something that would inevitably lead to calamity. However, he knew that the navy of the Tyranny was incredibly supply intensive, and he knew from intel reports that the rather incompetent Tyrant was still diverting some production, even at the point when their industrial capacity was weakened to their secret weapons projects rather than to having a good logistics train. Furthermore, spies had learned that the Tyranny was still broke from a project called Tiamat and was unable to expand their total production capability at a fast enough rate to accomodate their current needs.
The logical extension of this was a rather simple fact, it was that if he was able to successfully attack their outposts and harass their supply lines sufficiently, something that was rather easy given the fact that the Tyranny never expect supplies there, he would be able to starve the intimidating Mark 2 forces at the front. What this meant was that in order to win, his forces would not need to face Mark 2s at the apex of their firepower but instead attack them where it hurt, in the supply lines, and this would directly impact the main Tyranny forces. This meant that he would be able to attack the unfueled and unsupplied Mark 2s, and he knew that even the Tyranny's technology could not save them from the fact that having no supplies meant that he could not fight. He had a plan now, a plan to dethrone the Tyranny and to absolutely destroy their force, something which would help galvanize support for the FPC. It was time for battle, time for scorched earth.
As per the plan of the Dominatus, the Mark 2 fleet advanced through the space of the FPC, desperately seeking a pitched battle that would make the conquest of the remaining undefended worlds rather trivial. The other reason was that the strategic doctrine of the Tyranny meant that a fleet should always set out for a pitched set piece battle through which to fully defeat an enemy force. This was due to the he massive industrial losses of the Tyranny, the amount of funds thats had to be devoted to research and the extent of their empire, which entailed that a Tyranny fleet would want to end a war as quickly as possible lest they be brought down by logistic strain. The Tyranny tried to accomplish this, going after the armada of Ikeben, which had been split into numerous tactical taskforces that were able to wage fearsome guerrilla warfare on the Tyranny.
The Mark 2 Fleet penetrated deeper and deeper into FPC space, just as Ikeben wanted them to, in the search of a pitched battle. This led to the supply lines of the Mark 2 fleet being stretched even more and more, as guerilla detachments of FPC Marines went on suicide missions behind Tyranny lines and disrupted critical infrastructure. This asymmetrical nature of battle was something that the Tyranny could not adapt to, as they ended up fighting the shadows. This offensive continued however, as the increasingly fueled starved Tyranny ships surged more and more into FPC territory, stretching them to a breaking point.
Written by: GreatDestroyer12
As the Mark 2's equipment wore out without hope of supply and a pitched battle was not found, the FPC continued to get pushed back as per Gustavus' predictions. However, eventually, at the last remaining lines between the planets before dark space, the Tyranny ships could eventually not move nor fire. Their shields were down, not having the fuel to be able to protect the monsters anymore and where for all intents and purposes, floating hulks. At this point, they got the pitched battle they were looking for this entire time.
At this point, the smaller ships of Gustavus task force engaged the Tyranny in all across their planets as the defenseless Mark 2s sat at the rims of their last systems doing nothing. The vaunted Mark 2 fleet, once thought of as invulnerable and unbeatable was utterly destroyed in one of the most one sided battles of the war, as they were unable to fire on the enemy ships, unable to retreat, and unable to defend themselves. One by one, across the different systems, the Mark 2s started blowing up in massive fire balls as their critical systems were damaged, and the FPC soon claimed victory.
The Dominatus were shocked at this debacle, not for the military loss in particular but as a blow to their naval prestige. Mark 2's were the vanguard of the Tyranny, fleets that had engaged everything from the Grox to the DCP to Exodium and had come out on top. It was completely unexpected that rebels would be able to destroy the fleet that represented the power of the Tyranny and this sent shockwaves throughout the Tyranny, and showed a sign of weakness of the Tyranny to the Gigaquadrant, to whom the entire final battle was broadcasted to.
It was as in the saying Buchtdoshitzentyz, ahgzev daltzcrg ubischrtiz Letzen, drigen Dominatus, or "Impossible, they have beaten us, the Dominatus.
A Meeting of the LightEdit
After the Core incident, dissent was spread among the Commonwealth member states; how could the AGC, the same alliance that once defeated the mighty Grox, allow the very heart of the galaxy to be taken by the extragalactic invaders? Indeed, many lords of the Andromedan Light started to question whether the Commonwealth was truly able to lead Andromeda into a brighter future, and it was finally decided that the entire Andromedan light should be assembled to ensure that the Core Crisis would never repeat again. As per tradition, the AGC leaders assembled in the Seat of Light, and the discussion was started by one of the Highlords - this time, it was Iovera.
Iovera- Citizens of the unified Andromeda, the Core Crisis was a mistake, and we admit that this mistake was our fault. But, rest assured, that was a mistake we shall never repeat again! Never again shall we tolerate those who seek to claim the galaxy we have sworn to protect as their own. Never again.
Senator - And how can you make sure of this?
Uriel *turning to Iovera* - I recently came back from a diplomatic visit, I have a suggestion.
Iovera - I only use violence as a last resort, but in that case, it seems the for me that the Tyranny left us no choice. I believe that we have to consider an act of war.
Uriel - Recently a new empire has joined our commonwealth, and I believe they can give us an edge over the Dominatus.
Reminocles stared at Iovera.
Reminocles - And how are you going to do this, Highlord? The Tyranny is powerful, and to defeat them, the combined efforts of the entire Commonwealth would be needed. And the Dominatus aren't Grox.
Iovera - The Fordan Empire?
Uriel - I have faith in the Fordanta. I attended a state visit a week ago and was impressed with their skills in battle.
Fordan Councillor - Thank you, Hel'La'Ri. Although it is unclear how the contribution of a relatively small power such as our own can grant an edge in such a war, we shall strive to earn our place in this commonwealth.
Reminocles - Hmph... Impressive. But what can a single species do against the entire Dominatus warmachine?
Uriel - Remember that the commonwealth's power is not in the contribution of one particular species, but how multiple species work together, the whole is greater than the sum.
Iovera - The Commonwealth is built on unity. Remember that.
Reta'nyan - Your words make sense... but when should we strike? We must act fast, lest the Dominatus will prepare for our assault.
Uriel - The Tyranny is already busy with political troubles of its own. In fact if memory serves, we can gain more supporters in the form of slaves rising up against them.
Renus - Having worked in the Military Intelligence of the Tyranny, I still have the access codes to some of their files.
Renus - It appears that the slaves have repulsed them in Andromeda, a so called Free People's Coalition.
Renus - If there is a time to strike, it is now, lest they regain their strength.
Renus - I believe the first order of business would be to test the prowess of thsese "Fordanta"
Reta'nyan - A right decision. A warrior's prowess is tested only on the battlefield.
Renus - The only proof of theory lies in the crucible of reality.
As the course of action was decided, the discussion was over and members of the Light returned to their homes, preparing for the upcoming campaign against the Tyranny.
The Battle of SpirakEdit
The vanguard of the AGC fleet gathered over a rather desolate Tyranny world, a featureless desert where the power of the Fordanta could be tested. On that planet, the Tyranny had eschewed the use of vehicles for infantry because of the positioning of their infrastructure. In addition, it was a world where a fleet had just left for another world, and thus was only defended on the ground. The AGC forces gathered on a ship behind the moon of the planet to plot their military actions.
Renus - What are the plans for assault?
Larnus - Intelligence indicates this planet contains a moderate Tyranny garrison. They preferred using infantry due to the positioning of their infrastructure.
Larnus - However this time the tyranny's preference to building big has worked in our favour. It is possible we can fit smaller vehicles between structures, but the battlefield does show a preference for infantry.
Jahric - We could try to attack them from space first. I do not like to waste lives without need.
Larnus - A good plan. We can soften them up before we meet them on the ground.
Renus - Let fire rain from the heavens.
Larnus - Set priority on destroying the military bases. We can then have scouts sabotage outlying infrastructure.
Renus - I believe that the Tyranny would hide it's important infrastructure somewhere else, we may lose the element of surprise from a bombardment.
Renus - It is your decision however, Lord Admiral.
Larnus - Hmm, have our men prepare. As the bombardment dies down, we send in ground troops.
Larnus - Even if they do emerge from shelters, they will be met with our armies upon re-emergence.
The sensors all focused on a single bastion which stood in stark contrast to the massive desert which was the planet.
Renus - Fire on that bastion, it is obviously their center of control.
Larnus - All gunners to your positions. All ground soldiers prepare for assault.
Hel'Bre'K - If I may make a request, my Lord?
Larnus - Yes, blademaster?
Hel'Bre'K - Excuse the impertinence, but if this bastion is the enemy's centre of command, would it not be wiser to bombard their reserve forces, and seize the bastion intact?
Larnus - Perhaps. At the same time, decimating the bastion can send a message and boost the morale of the slaves.
Renus - During a slave revolt, my people would have done something to replace the slaves.
Renus - However, I was not involved with Installation 11, I don't know what they were up to with respect to servant races aside from the overseers.
Hel'Bre'K - As strong a message as the banner of the Commonwealth waving high above it? I admit, I am unfamiliar to the scale of war you know well, however there may be tactical information of value within the bastion.
Renus - This is but an outpost world, although it may facilitate a few fleet reports
Larnus - Blademaster you have a point. Renus, where would tactical information be held in such a structure?
Renus - At the very top of the structure, or the very bottom.
Larnus - If the information is at the bottom we can aford a few shots.
Renus - It is ultimately up to your jurisdiction, Lord Admiral.
Jahric - If the latter is correct, then we'll have to get our troops in there.
Hel'Bre'K - Is there any possibility of landing troops on top of the bastion?
Jahric - There is. The Divinarium teleportation technology is powerful.
Larnus - Also such a thing is a common imperial tactic.
Hel'Bre'K - Then perhaps, if your orbital artillery can absorb some of the Tyranny reinforcements, my Fordanta can stage a landing atop the bastion. Once those inside the tower are distracted, your own troops could be teleported inside the tower at the lower levels.
Larnus - A sound plan blademaster.
Jahric - ...This could work. But are you aware how powerful the Dominatus troppers are?
Renus - I do not believe Dominatus would have deployed their troops to an outpost.
Hel'Bre'K - The Dominatus warriors are clearly potent, and I admit I am concerned pitting my kin against them, however the ability to adapt is core to the way of the Warrior.
Hel’Bre’K - This Commonwealth will find a way to defeat them, and my kin are ready to sacrifice everything if needed. It is merely my duty to ensure that this is not necessary.
Renus - You have never seen a Dominatus in battle, Hel'.
Larnus - Your faith is inpirational, blademaster.
Renus - However, generally speaking, they administrate from the back.
Renus - Their population prohibits mass deployment of them.
Hel'Bre'K - *to Renus* You have not seen the Path of the Blademaster. Whatever these Dominatus are capable of, rest assured that I will not tire nor slow until the commonwealth succeeds.
Renus - I hope you can live up to that Hel', now however, we must commence the attack.
Hel'Bre'K - Agreed. By your command, my Lord. My Kin are ready.
Jahric - And so is the Dei'Ar. I shall stay on orbit, coordinating the bombardment.
On a Dominatus world, at the top of the bastion, two Prophet overseers stood watch over the planet. Life went along normally as biodrones operated the machinery which devoured the planet to make more ships for the Tyranny. The overseers, communicating telepathically played a game of wits to sharpen their mental faculty while going about their duty.All of a sudden however, the sky broke loose with bombardment from the AGC fleet. An encrypted transmission was sent to Tyranny high command telling of the AGC while the Tyranny troops began retreating into the bowels of the factories.
With a mix of coordination and skill, AGC troops were deployed amongst the shells and lasers of orbiting ships. A detachment of AGC forces were teleported onto the roof of the bastion. Prophets, who were posted to the top level started forming a vanguard, blasting the AGC troops with hellfire. This, however, could not stop the Divinarium troops, who teleported from place to place, dodging the Overseer psychic powers. Fordan dropships, who were already entering low orbit on the heels of the bombardment, swooped in low and fast, trying to get under the Dominatus' guns, dropping off troops along the way to seal the overseers inside the bastion. AGC troops darted for cover and fired on the Prophets.The Prophets directed Myrmidons to swarm against the AGC troops, showering them with inaccurate but massive amounts of fire.
Prophet overseers continued to blast hellfire and lightning from their staffs at the enemies as the rest of the overseers retreated deeper into the complex. The Prophets, knowing about teleportation's capabilities retreated deeper into the tower, hoping that the teleportation would be more useless there. Prophets were also confused by what they saw. Although their advanced sensors told them that the Fordanta were in certain locations, their senses told them not. Fordanta took advantage of this confusion to gang up on confused prophets and take the confused psychics out. Fordanta combat dropped, the small thrusters on their backs allowing them to safely descend from heights of ten to twenty metres, rolling as they landed to get into cover. All the while, mountains of destroyed Myrmidons were built by the AGC troops as their inaccurate and ineffective fire failed to do much damage.
AGC soldier – Hehe, someone remind me how these fools are such a threat?
The Prophets continued retreating into the cavernous confines of the base and soon the AGC had the entirety of the roof. The Commonwealth soldiers marched further into the base, watching the sunlight vanishing in the dark caverns. It appeared that the Tyranny architecture meant to horrify other races.
Fordanta - These forces are clearly a meat shield, intended to tire us before the true battle.
AGC Soldier - I see.
They journeyed deeper and deeper into the tower, as a massive amount of AGC troops entered the ruined bastion.
AGC Solder 1 - These aliens have "freakshow" written all over their psyche...
AGC Soldier 2 - Creepy...
The Fordanta steadily made their way to the vanguard of the force, where their short-ranged weaponry proved more useful. This also meant that they took the brunt of the wild fire from the Myrmidons. inside the tower however, sonic blasts created a massive cacophony, something the lead elements of the AGC force were familiar with. Even at the landing point at the room, astride their antigravity packs, Sons of Hedon started firing at the AGC from all angles. Inside the tower, they seemed to emerge from the walls themselves, in the endless corridors, ambushing AGC squads.
NTA Soldier - ...Draconis?
The NTA soldier's reply was a blast to the head from a sonic beam, which ripped him apart at the smallest level. Other AGC soldiers, not having seen action at Deep Core were also similarly confused. They also noticed that their enemy acted in perfect synchronicity, even though they did not emit any sounds from anything but their weapons. Reports broke out of attacks all across their flanks and positions.
Fordanta Soldier - I find that in these sorts of situations, the best course of action is to throw grenades at every corridor I do not intend to go down. *starts to do so*
Son of Hedon - THINGS SHOULD GET LOUD NOW!
AGC Soldiers - Ah crap, ah crap...
The Sons of Hedon began chanting insults so as to further intimidate the AGC forces.
ITN Marine - Melt these abominations!
Scattered AGC troops in some locations ran down corridors screaming only to be dragged away by Sons of Hedon. A sonic barrage was a form of warfare the Fordanta were unfamiliar with, however psychological warfare had little effect on them. Although they were disoriented, some started to climb the walls to get better shots at the Sons of Hedon, engaging in close combat if they were grabbed. It was there however, where the Fordanta began to witness the unnatural strength and melee capabilities of the Sons, whose template had been given Dominatus education. Without dedicated melee weaponry nor troops in the front lines, the Fordanta were beginning to be overpowered. At this, Hel'Bre'K immediately ordered a group of Knights to accompany him to the front, in a bid to turn the edge.
The Sons of Hedon continued firing at the Knights and AGC troops in coordination with the prophets. The main disadvantage of the Sons of Hedon however was their relative lack of experience, being clones. They did not know the Fordan ways of war, and although possessing advantage in raw natural power, they were beaten by the coordinated strikes of the knights. Some of the more psychologically stricken were the Draconis. To them, the sons reminded them of stories of certain kinds of demon from long ago. Furthermore, in the midst of battle, the abducted AGC troops were forced to listen to the sounds of torture of their own brethren who had lost in individual firefights against the Sons. Screams of agony permeated themselves across the battle and soon each blast of the Sons of Hedon sounded like a scream or plea for mercy from AGC troops.
The Knights at the frontline were beginning to push, however the Warriors behind them were beginning to be affected by the Sons' weapons. They were beginning to fight with more desperation, focusing more on the quantity of kills than the precision. One marine became panicked. He looked about as his chest pounded. He was immediately dragged away by a Son of Hedon as his agony became the sound of cannons. The Sons of hedon however, still continued to retreat deeper into the fortress.
Dei'Ar Hunter - Do these mutants scare you, Draconis? Hmph.
As they went deeper and deeper underground, the architecture grew more twisted.
Warrior - Steady... steady... remember your training. Wait a minute... why are they retreating when they have the advantage here?
Unbeknownst to them, the Sons of Hedon wanted to draw them deeper, to a place where they had absolutely no hope of escape. A place where they could all be destroyed, and be reduced to dust in the wind.
Dei'Ar Hunter - Usually, someone says "they have a plan" at that point and then all these creatures pop up and kill everyone.
Marine - They look so..abominable.
They delve deeper into the cavernous places until they come to a place where they see a massive plaza, far underground.
Fordan Warrior - This is bad. This is very, very bad.
There they see countless biodrones slaving away at eldritch machinery, cracking open the planet. At this point, they realize what happened to the slaves.
Marine - Drakon preserve us all....
Hunter - Now comes the "kill everyone" part.
Fordan Berserk - Monsters... they will suffer for this... Brothers! DESTROY THEM!
The slaves continue to operate their machinery as the AGc fores enter the endless plaza.
Marine - Deployable barriers, now!
The biodrones merely continue about working, in face of the AGC troops. They shamble towards rthe AGC troops, only to go to their next stations. Several Fordanta turned berserk, charging ahead of the main line. This disrupted the Fordan advance, and their morale. The Divinarium soldiers used their jetpacks to fly into the air, shooting the biodrones from the safest distance. The biodrones went down, their anguished souls being granted rest, but yet they continued to operate their machinery. The sheer number of them was overwhelming and the stench of their corpses filled the air.
By this time, the AGC detachment was full inside the plaza, still surrounded by biodrones. Much time went on as they got to the business of killing each and every one of them. Eventually, having lost the concept of day and night, light and darkness, and life and death, they finally finished killing the final biodrone. At this point however, the gates sealed themselves, plunging them into the night.
Hunter - Ew.
They were alone, in the center of the factory, surrounded by piles of the dead, and in total darkness.
Marine - Alternate vision modes, now.
Warrior - This is problematic. And by problematic, I mean scary.
Fresh biodrones came out from a biomechanical machine, filled with the organic matter of the destroyed ones as well as from other sources, and instead of working, shambled towards the AGC forces, completely silent. The biodrones grabbed at the AGC troops and began tearing off their armor, trying to grab at the flesh.
Warrior - This is... wrong. This is so wrong.
Marines and officers drew close combat weapons and attacked the drones while others shot approaching ones from a distance. Biodrones went down ,but they seemed to emerge from everywhere. Troopers who clung to walls were pulled inside them by groping hands, forever lost to the light. The Warriors were mostly trained to deflect blows to set up for close quarter shots. They could defeat the biodrones in hand-to-hand, but were slowly being overwhelmed. Even worse, their weapons began to deplete or overheat, some exploding violently as the casings failed. A sea of hands came from all directions at the invading troops and was joined by the screams of AGC troops being eviscerated by hand.
Marine - Remind we why this place has not been blasted to oblivion!?
Warrior - Because the Blademaster suggested that it might contain valuable information!
Divinarium soldiers flew higher, trying to burn the invading drones from the ground.
Marine - All we have found is a trap-room.
Soldier - Our comrades died horribley.. others are being eviscerated...
Hel'Bre'K - And yet you are still alive, and I see a weapon in your hands. Soldier - That didn't save the others.
A cluster of flares were thrown into the room as a group of Praetoria pushed their way in, with Hel'Bre'K leading them.
Hunter - Fordanta?
Hel'Bre'K - Sometimes, a warrior must make the greatest sacrifice so that others do not have to. You have seen what the enemy is capable of. Do not let them live to do this to those you left at home.
The room was illuminated as the biodrones were pushed back and their number began to thin. The Praetoria led a relief column from the rest of the Commonwealth forces, although they too had been attacked by the many Sons of Hedon within the bastion. The room lighted up once again as they then saw a giant golden door in front of them.
Soldier - Huh. Interesting.
Hel'Bre'K - A door of this size... a trap.
The Gate opened, inviting the AGC forces. The Imperial soldiers were hesitant.
Hel'Bre'K - Behind that door is death, no doubt. The forces on the surface could use reinforcement, should you decide that this assault is a waste of time and life.
Hunter - Why aren't we out of this hellhole yet? The complex is ours, we can bomb it now.
The door stood rigid in its open form, waiting for the AGC to enter it.
Soldier - Orders blademaster?
Hel'Bre'K - If what is behind this door is not worth the lives lost, there will be a reckoning for this. My Praetoria and I will lead the charge. Any who do not wish to follow us need not follow.
Hel'Bre'K started walking through the door, followed by his Praetoria and a solid chunk of his Warriors. Inside of the door, they saw what seemed to be interior of a palace, carved in gold and previous gemstones. It seemed to be supported by massive columns of the same material, and surrounded by a river of lava. The ITN soldiers who looked inside were awestruck by the room's appearance.
Marine - It's...beautiful.
Statues seemed to be guarding it, in a form that was somewhat familiar to the Fordanta. At the center of the room, sat a throne, on which there was what looked like a note.
Warrior - Those statues... have I seen this style somewhere?
Hel' walked up to the throne, and paused to read the note. What he saw was utterly intelligible, written in an unknown language. He looked at the note, pondering on the alien and complex design of it's characters.
Soldier - What is it, blademaster?
Hel'Bre'K *into comms* - I cannot read it. Is this language familiar to anyone?
Renus - Yes, it is familiar.
Renus - However, I will need it brought to me physically for an analysis of it.
The AGC forces turned to exit the gate, but suddenly the gate closed behind them in a similar way. But soon the statues came to life. arms split into 4 on each side. It was the Blademasters of Hag'Mar'Ah , the Fordanta overseers.
ITN - ...blademaster!
Hunter - Oh, good. They have their own Fordans now.
Hel'Bre'K rolled his shoulders, hefting his bastard sword.
Warrior - Blademaster...
The Blademasters, armed with their blades started wading into the ranks of the enemy forces. The 7 meter tall monsters ripped asunder those foolish enough to get into close combat range. Silent as can be, the overseers ripped into the AGC invasion force, and were supplemented by the Sons and Prophets as well. Blade combined with sonic weapons and hellfire to create a devastating battlefield. ITN marines backed away from the enemy. The abominations of nature, each sick parodies of each of the species of the AGC force pounded the enemy. The Dei'Ar hunters regrouped and teleported on the higher platforms of the plaza, targeting the corrupted Fordanta Overseers. Hel'Bre'K turned to the nearest Blademaster, and roared a challenge. The roar was picked up by dozens of other Fordanta across the Legion. Many let shoulder cloaks fall loose, bearing the Ce'So'Va rune.The Dei'Ar were met by Sons of Hedon, who flew up to meet them in aerial combat.
Hel'Bre'K - It is said, that if a God were to meet a Ce'So'Va in battle, then that God shall beg for mercy. I intend to prove this saying to be true.
The most senior of all the Fordanta Overseers, took up Hel's Challenge, silently moving towards Hel’ all 8 of his swords brandished. With that, Hel'Bre'K broke into a full charge, silent except for the sound of his footsteps. The Praetoria and Knights moved to intercept the other Blademasters, while Destroyers aimed heavier weaponry at them. The hunters simply turned off the sound on their helmets and shot the Sons from the platforms.
Hunter - This loudness offends Spode. Things should get quieter now.
Marine - Suppressive fire. Scatter pattern.
The Sons responded by modulating the frequencies of their weapons, so that they were not heard but still did damage. Blademasters began to charge at the Fordanta as well, building up impressive speed fro their bulk.
Hunter - ...Haal'thanai'denar.
Prophets blasted hellfire but were cut down by the blank Fordanta. Fordanta warriors however, had to adjust to an enemy that had 8 blades at once. The gusts of the wings of the Sons forced many a hunter to fall into the lava or onto their comrades. Losing balance, the Dei'Ar soldiers fell unto the ground, with many breaking their bones. Meanwhile, the battle between Hel' and the Blademaster leader continued to be the centerpiece of the battle. The sons however, were being cut down, weakened from previous battles. The Prophets were eventually eliminated, at dear cost to their attackers. Soon enough, it was only the Blademasters left.
Hel'Bre'K watched the other Blademasters fight, determining where their arms could not reach. He quickly settled into a plan, intending to evade the typical initial attacks of the Blademaster, rolling under its reach, then climbing around to its back to kill it. Seeing the damage was too severe, their commander ordered the hunters to be teleported away. The Blademasters were beginning to get overwhelmed, being the only overseers left. They fought in a way not made to secure victory but instead to inflict as many casualties as possible.
The Praetoria and Knights did what they could to slow down the Blademasters, giving their comrades a chance to bring them down. The blademasters continued to go down, at grevious cost to the AGC forces, killing Fordanta, Draconis and Radeon alike. ITN marines continued firing at critical points on the blademasters. But their numbers were thinning. With the other overseers dead, many marines took to the skies. The overseers decreased in number till only one fight remained, That between Hel' and the leader of the blademasters in the base. Knights and Warriors began to lead a push back to the surface, the Praetoria staying behind to ensure Hel' returned safely.
The leader of the Blademasters and Hel' engaged in a deadly duel, the genetically engineered monster versus the Blademaster himself. Hel' was able to counteract the attacks of the Blademaster, who had not spoken a single word. Using his smaller size and maneuverability, he was able to attack points otherwise impossible to attack. After countless slashes he was able to fully dismember the Blademaster.
Hel'Bre'K - I will know your name before you die, abomination.
Blademaster - I have no name, I am merely a blademaster.
Blademaster - A name is pointless, I am here merely to serve my masters.
Blademaster - I only serve those who sit upon the throne.
Hel'Bre'K - Then you are meaningless. You are nothing. And history will remember you, and your masters, as nothing. And you are no Blademaster.
Blademaster - You have not yet met my masters, you know nothing.
Hel'Bre'K - Your masters have not met me.
With that, Hel' walked away. The 'Blademaster' would succumb to its wounds, but Hel' did not count it worthy of dying by his hand.
Start of HostilitiesEdit
Little occurs in the universe that does not reach the ears of the Iron Systems Federation. Steadily, reports began to piece together the events unfolding around the Drakodominatus Tyranny. It quickly became apparent to the Magi of the Federation that the Tyranny represented not only a significant threat to local space - a negligible detail, mind you - but also a space power that had developed technology far beyond their means, and that would eventually cause significant damage to both itself and any other civilisations in reach. Magos Sabato, recently elevated within his order after the brilliant campaigns he had led against the Grox, and Moxix' undead horde, was placed in charge of the military forces being sent to eradicate the Tyranny.
Sabato was overseeing the construction of a new battlegroup of ships to launch a probing attack on the Tyranny. The group of seven ships was coming together rapidly, the Forgeworld's massive factories pumping out full plating, weaponry, and the more delicate systems. Initiates conducted the wiring and minutae of the construction, while originating programming was updated by the more senior Paladins to accommodate the new systems. Shipboard VI's were created and installed, while the organic AI datapool frameworks were set up. Each individual element of the ship came together seamlessly into sub-constructions, each of these constructions were then pieced together into the main hull. The massive scale of the construction meant that it could only possibly be completed with such speed by the sheer technological ability of the Federation.
The latest designs from Project Aegis were also being assembled and tested for the operation. Massive ACVs came off the production line, continually being refined and upgraded to suit the tastes of their operators. HazOp and Auxiliary suits, much smaller personnel suits, and the larger Heracles personnel combat suits. Furthermore, Cerberus VI combat mechs and Fury aerial assault drones poured out by the thousand. Massive ammunition racks, Q-G plasma generators, rows of torpedoes and banks of interceptor drones all allotted their space within the hull. Life support and cryo pods came next, as well as the necessary habitation facilities.
As soon as the primary systems were in place, the massive weapons systems were installed and networked. A massive weapon bank was situated on each of the aft flanks, seven gun decks each. Smaller batteries of three decks sat on the prow flanks, while a heavy cannon battery sat on the dorsal ridge. Lance clusters were positioned near the main cannon batteries, their high-energy weaponry perfect for piercing hulls as soon as the shields were brought down. A massive Q-G plasma caster ran much of the ship's length, sufficient to overwhelm most comparable vessels in a single shot. A weapon such as this had made the Final Word praised and feared across the entire Ko'Sa'Va galaxy for its destructive capacity.
Six torpedo tubes, able to load both ship-to-ship plasma charges, or boarding torpedos, pierced the armoured prow in a chevron formation, the massive charges known to be able to wipe out frigates with a single volley. Along the ventral ridge, interceptor drones were stowed in ranks, ready to be deployed onto launching rails. Orbital bombardment cannon and launching tubes for drop pods occupied the bulge on the aft end of the ridge, the former carrying both heavy rounds for structures and reactive rounds for wide-range destruction. ch bo The final component activated was the propulsion, a massive central engine surrounded by three smaller support thrusters. The highly efficient plasma drives were capable of propelling the ship fast enough to keep up with the much smaller cruisers and frigates, which would normally easily outpace the lumpen ship. Everything was connected in to six main reactors, and one stable Void rift generator. Between these generators, everything short of the main cannon could be activated at once.
As the reactors were fuelled, and the void rift sparked to life, the high-capacity energy shields protecting the hull flickered, and the dry-dock's bays opened up, releasing the new battlecruiser into the vacuum. The seven ships joined the line of cruisers and frigates assembling, a combined military force capable of fighting down almost any force in the universe.
Battle of TelekrizEdit
In a remote outpost of the Tyranny in the Andromeda Galaxy, a patrol fleet of 2 Mark 2 Tyrant Cruisers stood vigil over a world, protecting the interests of the tyranny as the colony improved upon itself at a rapid rate. The Mark 2's had very little to fear in the First Gigaquadrant, being able to stand their ground against other tier 1 ships of the same class, as was seen during multiple battles in the War of Hyperspace, however this day, they would meet an enemy that was able to match the Tyranny's Mark 2 cruisers ship for ship. An enemy called the Iron Systems Federation.
The two Tyrant Mark 2s hovered rather placidly around the world they were meant to stand sentry over until a flotilla of two ISF line cruisers supported by a barrier ship exited space over the planet. The Tyranny had not met the ISF before, the civilization having slipped under it's radar due to the fact that it was busy dealing with civilizations of a larger scale in planets, and traditionally speaking, of higher power. However, the ISF was rather anomalous in this, as though they laid claim to rather few systems, their technological prowess was in the same league of the Tyranny, with their most arcane lore being equivalent to the most prototype and untested of Tyranny technology.
A brief exchange followed in which the Tyranny AIs, not recognizing the ISF as friend or foe were trying to ascertain their alignment. However, after the ISF proceeded to remain in the area without any identification with reference to foreign relations databases. However, this was merely a charade for what both ships were doing, which was scanning the other ship for armor and weapon specifications. In addition to this, the Iron Systems Federation set up the barrier so as to protect their ships. What happened next was inevitable, as the two juggernauts knew what was coming.
The first shots were fired by the Dominatus, who fired aimed their starboard and port based Subatomic Disruptors, which lanced into the Barrier created by the Barrier ship, greatly damaging it with the initial vollies, however, the barrier held. During this time, the Dominatus also started aiming and charging the Gatling Hyperlasers at the ISF ships. The ISF ships responded by firing off their siege cannons against the planet while firing off their relativistic weapons and hyperlasers against the Dominatus while also firing torpedoes. This continued for quite a bit, and it seemed neither side could gain and advantage upon the other.
The ISF however, was computing the weak structural points of the Mark 2s in front of them and began recalibrating fire, focusing on the weaker points with their weaponry and causing hull damage at certain points. This was countered by the raw power of Gatling hyperlasers, which broke through the shielding of the barrier ship in places and began dealing damage to the line cruisers of the ISF themselves. The ISF siege projectiles also exploded upon the Dominatus settlement of the planet, creating a fireball which claimed the lives of those on the colony.
The battle continued in space as the torpedoes of the ISf also impacted upon the weak ponts of the Dominatus ships, causing large fireballs while the gatling hyperlasers of the Tyranny continued battering the ISF ships. The equilibrium of the two fleets however, was preventing the battle from being anything other than a total stalemate, as both fleets were too evenly matched for even computational adjustments to make a large difference.
However, even when both forces are equal, there is the problem of attrition, and the armor of both ships began getting stripped apart by the massive amount of fire present in the encounter. The plating of both ships began getting torn apart as fire continued impacting them. The scintillating flashes of fire from both sides continued claiming more and more of each ship as energy and kinetic weapons met both ships, dealing ludicrous amounts of damage that would have felled most other vessels.
The battle continued to drag on, with the end drawing increasingly near. However, the ISF commanders made the tactical decision to withdraw, having achieved the objectives of their mission in having razed the Dominatus settlement and coming up with an analysis for the ships of the enemy, and promptly retreated with 3 heavily damaged vessels. The Dominatus suffered similar losses, the two ships being barely space worthy and their colony now being a pile of ashes.
After the battle, both sides came to the conclusion that the other side was equivalent in power per ship to the other, at least for the cruisers. Although the Tyranny possessed a slight advantage in size, armor, and raw firepower, the ISF ships were more maneuverable, and possessed more advanced sensor and AI suites, which could acclimate to battle faster, as well as more reliable weaponry, thus putting both ships at equilibrium, a portent for a long hard war ahead of both sides.
A New ProblemEdit
The forces of the Drakodominatus Tyranny presented a new and unprecedented threat to the Iron Systems Federation. In the Tyranny, the Magi and Paladins had found an enemy that could match them, ship for ship, in pitched battle, and had displayed shipbuilding power orders of magnitude beyond what the Magi had initially predicted. As such, a new approach to this enemy had to be developed.
Aboard Forgeship 13, the great repertoire of arcane sciences and technological marvels was held in safekeeping, in waiting for the dire circumstances that would require their use. The weapons and technologies stored here were so great and so potent, that were it not so necessary to keep such a collection of knowledge, many Magi would have outright demanded its destruction. The Forgeship also housed the many millions of great weaponsmiths that dominated the War in Cyberspace, now stored as streams of self-editing data held within virtual realities, their programming altered to allow the Paladins to speak with them, and access their knowledge freely. One such meeting between living being and computer code was being held even as the datapool assessed the direct threat of the Tyranny’s cruisers.
Paladin – Identify yourselves, for the records.
??? – My name is Grand Technocrat Eris of the Iron Systems Federation.
??? – I am Mage-artificer Varin of the True Order.
Paladin – And your specialities?
Eris – I deal primarily in high-energy weaponry and generators.
Varin – I remain the primary mind in the field of large-scale shipbuilding.
Paladin – The Federation has come to war with a foreign power capable of building combat-practical battleships of lengths greater than twenty thousand metres. I have made tactical readouts of their hull structure and weapons systems. I require the two of you to develop a method of combating these ships.
The two rogue Paladins absorbed the information into their knowledge banks, fully familiarizing themselves with the data in minutes.
Eris – I believe there is potential for the application of graviton weaponry.
Paladin – Elaborate.
Eris – I created a concept for a graviton cannon, a weapon designed to create an intense point of gravity at the target location. This would cause nearby ships to be thrown off course, or potentially even warp the hulls of larger vessels, causing significant structural damage. The idea was eventually scrapped because of the energy requirements, making a vessel large enough to carry the weapon and its generators impractical.
Paladin – How large a vessel are you referring to?
Eris – Approximately ten kilometers in length at least, capable of outputting a net energy discharge of several times higher than even my most advanced conventional energy weapons.
Paladin – Varin, can a ship of this size be created, to Eris’ specifications? Varin – Although these readouts are incomplete, it may be possible to implement some of their structural advances in our own cruiser patterns, allowing us to create vessels of such size.
Eris – If given enough space to work with, I could certainly develop energy systems to power the weapon.
Paladin – Very well. Begin development of this graviton cannon, and its carrier ship, immediately. Maintain resource efficiency wherever possible, however net cost to materials is irrelevant. Eris, you may depart.
With that, Eris was disconnected from the conversation. His programming was overwritten to make development of a working graviton cannon his highest priority, and with the unimaginable processing power at his disposal, he set to work.
Paladin – Varin, is it possible that we could manufacture ships of the same size as our enemy? A twenty kilometer vessel, perhaps larger?
Varin – It is within our enemy’s potential, and your information indicates we are of a higher net development point, so with more complete schematics and readouts of the ships in question, it is highly likely that the Federation would be capable of constructing such a vessel. For what purpose would it be used?
Paladin – To make our mighty Forgeworlds move.
Battle for Grivenis PrimeEdit
A massive ISF battlfleet entered Tyranny space, ready to visit ruination on one of the research stations of the Dominatus. The research station was completely automated and was constantly making calculations on high energy physics for Dominatus weaponry, and was an ideal system for the ISF to attack. The ISF Battlefleet, the largest assembled to date merely encountered a Dominatus patrol fleet, and although they were generally comparable one on one, the numerical superiority of the ISF, as well as the sophistication of their sensors and their coordination, allowed them to take out the patrol fleet in a quick manner with no casualties. It seemed as if everything was going to plan as the ships neared the research station.
The Magi cheered at this on their ships, expecting a victory to come quickly and to meet all their objectives. However, as they neared the station, they seemed to notice spacetime warp around them, as Dominatus Kraken Class Dreadnaughts materialized in front of them, barring them for the research station and began blasting at them. The Krakens were of a considerable number, and began decimating the ISF fleet through the force of raw power. The 30km long vessels smashed asunder everything that faced them as the Magi scrambled for a solution in order to defeat the monstrosities that lay ahead of them.
The first cruiser exploded in a magnificent fireball as their fleet's fire dissipated on the shields of the Tyranny dreadnoughts, and the Magi eventually saw that they were facing an enemy that even their vaunted battlecruisers could not deal with. While the battlecruisers were comparable in power to the capital ships of the Tyranny, they were facing an enemy one class more powerful than that, the Dreadnaughts. They were heavily damaged in vollies from the Kraken's powerful hyperlasers, which lanced through their otherwise powerful armor and shielding. Eventually, outclassed by the Tyranny vessels, the Magi ordered a general retreat to preserve the valuable battlecruisers.
The defeat of the Federation’s great battlecruisers threw the Grand Magi into uncertainty. The datapool blazed through trails of information, studying the minutae of the battle, yearning for any weakness they could exploit. As the study continued, cracks in the armour began to show. The ships’ construction was unstable, possibly even untested before the beginning of this war. Their weapons, while fearsome in number and magnitude, were similarly crude compared to the Federation’s designs. And as the damage the Federation’s own weaponry caused was analyzed, flaws in the construction process showed their presence. The Grand Magi had found the weakness they sought, and they had the weapon to exploit it. Now, they simply required the schematics to, or an intact specimen of, a Tyranny cruiser, and the flood gates would be blown wide open to the exploitation of the Iron Order.
Done with petty investigations and testing strikes, the Grand Magi issued a new order: A full assault, including cruisers, barrier ships, carriers and upgraded and refined battlecruisers refitted purely to deal with the Tyranny would commence a lightning strike, their objective to recover a complete vessel, or to obtain a copy of the schematics. Their target was a slave world, upon which was rumoured to be an intact Tyranny foundry, which suggested the possibility of the enemy’s schematics being held within. Although reports indicated that freed slaves now occupied the world, the Federation had its goal in sight, and would not be swayed from it.
Away from the virtual clutter and noise of the datapool, the once-great Paladin Eris tinkered away with his designs, simulating their effects and power requirements. He had designed the weapon’s physical form, and had begun testing its effective fire. Though his initial results were promising, the energy cost of generating such a large gravity event was staggering. Delving into his old research, he began to ponder as yet unused devices which could power his great gun. Varin, on the other hand, struggled to finalize his designs. With the data sourced from the battles, he had begun to understand the Tyranny’s construction method, however the advancements which granted the ships their structural strength eluded him. He attempted dozens of simulations, none of which returned a viable result. If he was to succeed, he needed the schematics as quickly as possible.
Battle for the WormholeEdit
Start of HostilitiesEdit
Battle for Tharif PrimeEdit
As the Sun Sets on Tharif PrimeEdit
Gravius fleet was in hyperspace on route to the world of Tharif Prime, the first world that served as a way for them to access the gateway system of the Imperium, which would carry them on for the entirety of the campaign and ameliorate their fuel issues. This was essential for the massive fleet, lead by the 1st Zettastrategon, otherwise known as "The Fleet of Subjugation", which although not the largest military formation of the Tyranny, was one of the most elite. It was a descendant of the first flotilla that subjugated the first extrasolar world of the Tyranny, and was rather well equipped, having a greater portion of Titan and Gargantuan class vessels compared to other units of comparable size. This was a formation made for taking out most civilizations, and going toe to toe with almost all ones with a fighting chance. Arrayed against it was Tharif Prime, a frontier world of the Draconid Imperium and an outer node of the wormhole network, protected by a patrol fleet along with a large array of weapons. It was supposed to have received transmissions from it's sister worlds, but the Dominatus had intercepted that and cut it out with fake transmissions, so they their offensive could go according to plan, something they needed at this point. Soon enough, Gravius received the signal that they were about to exit hyperspace ... the sun was about to set on Tharif Prime.
Dominatus Military Intelligence knew that the control keys for the wormhole were located within the formidable Draconis Battlestation that stood sentinel over the planet, and that taking control of that installation was the primary objective. The planet meant nothing strategically but could function as a possible supply point and thus the planetary invasion of Tharif Prime was set as a secondary objective, to be executed in tandem with the attack on the Battlestation. This started off with a massive exit out of hyperspace all around the battlestation and the world. The Tyranny fleet of Mark 2s engaged the Draconid fleet in orbit over the world while simultaneously bombarding the shielding of the battlestation, while blanketing the world with chemical and biological bombs, who's lethal gases were not stopped by the powerful shield generators of the planet. Planetary invasion was a secondary objective, and thus the Dominatus merely used their AI forces in order to swarm the planet, as tanks, walkers, and swarms of robots advanced onto the outnumbered AGC forces. Draconid ships, both outnumbered and outgunned by their Tyranny counterparts were blown up as the shields weakened. Whenever the Dominauts lost a ship due to AGC firepower, a new one replaced it, further overwhelming the Draconis. Eventually, as the fighting took it's toll, after each coruscating flash of fire from the Dominatus hyperlasers, the shielding fell and an entrance to the interior of the ship was open.
The Dominatus noticed that the ceilings had a particular vertical clearance and that they could neither send the bigger overseers nor themselves, and thus were forced to send the Beholders of Oculon, Kraw overseers. These overseers, specializing in reconnaissance were not as physically powerful as the other overseers, although supersoldiers by practically every standard, and they ripped through the surprised Draconis forces, who were actually outnumbered by the Kraw overseers. In spite of the valiant resistance that the Draconis put up, in face of the azure monsters charging at them, they were overpowered throughout the station, much like how Tyranny forces on the ground were savaging Draconis resistance. Once lush and beautiful forests rotted under the power of Dominatus biological weaponry, paralleling the necrotization and contortion of the Draconis's noble forms.
Draconis marines looked to the blast doors of the control room while charges were set by the Beholders of Oculon outside. The explosives, primed, blew up in a spectacular fashion as the door blew up, covering the room entirely in smoke. The commander coughed as he secured a breath mask, marines fired into the doorway in an attempt to pick off the assaulters. Rapid Laser fire from the Beholders soon entered the room, striking the ITN marines who were outnumbered and outmatched. The Kraw Overseers were able to pick out their targets and take them out at a rapid pace, flooding the room with lasers. After some time, the dust had settled, and the base commander was left alone, surrounded by Kraw overseers. Acting on Gravius orders, the Overseers shot out each of the limbs of the commander, leaving him a still living stump. To the surprise of the commander, the overseers still had not spoken. The commander fell on the floor and looked up at his opponent.
Commander - Going to kill me are you?
For the first time, he heard the overseer speak. It sounded warped and different, but he could swear he heard something like it from the Kraw Galaxy.
Overseer - Yes.
The commander snarled as he lay on the floor.
Commander - No honour, just like your worm-like masters!
Overseer - Honor is not concern of master, only efficiency.
Commander - I hate him already, not giving me the dignity of a fighting chance.
Overseer - Dignity is overrated, the point of war is to take an opponent's fighting chance away.
Commander - *growling* You're lucky you blasted my arms off or they'd be around your scrawny neck!
The overseer leader disengaged for the first time, and with his right hand, picked the stump of the base commander up by the neck. The door opened, as another overseer entered the room, carrying what seemed to be a flat organic looking creature
Commander - Urk.. you got some muscles on you...
It was then the overseer, with his left hand, took the creature up, and it semeed to morph to fit the shape of the Commander's face. The commander looked at the creature with both confusion and horror, as the overseer disengaged his helmet, and started the Commander right in the eye. There, the commander noticed that there was nothing reminiscent of a Kraw in the eyes of the Overseer, only solid malice.vThe Overseer gradually brought the creature closer, as appendages broke out of it, conforming to the features of the face of the Base Commander. The commander struggled, not wanting the creature on his face.
Commander - Get that piece of shit away from me!
The overseer leader, not relenting, pressed it onto the commander's face, as it invaded the Commander in order to search for his memories.Only screams remained as the creature worked itself into the leader's most forbidden locations, and then they faded into silence.It worked, and the creature leaped onto a device of the Kraw Overseer, displaying the memories of the Base Commander.Deep in his memories were the verification codes to open the wormhole. The Kraw overseer walked up to the control pannel and entered the code, then pressed the button. A portal opened in front of the Dominatus fleet, and it was then, that their masterplan truly began.
Standard Operating ProcedureEdit
The first thing that was sensed by the defenders on Tharif Prime where the biomchemical weapons that the Dominatus seeded the atmosphere of the planet with. Missiles exploded in the atmosphere as nanobot based virii carried themselves out through the ecosystem. Whatever organic material was touched was turned into sludge, decayed at a fast rate. Plants withered and died, and unshielded civilians went through rapid and excruciating necrosis. Garrisons wearing enclosed armor hurried who they could into crisis bunkers in populated areas, screening people for infection as they went.
Legionnaire - Get as many as we...oh shit!
Legionnaire - This is no normal virus!
The next waves of bombardment were energy based, as plasma fell upon the world from above, not enough to glass it, but to start burning up the sludge, which had released rather large amounts of methane. Garrison commanders watched the footage with grim expressions, it felt like an extermination. While this happened, massive landers full of Myrmidons descended onto the planet, supported by hordes of Gambit Class Fighters needed to gain air superiority. Not only this, but also Tyranny Steelhammer Main Battle Tanks were deployed in droves to support this offensive. Steelhammer tanks met Dragon MBTs while gambit fighters met ITN fighter drones in the skies.
They advanced towards the cities of the Imperium while more waves of troops were readied, either in more dropships, or merely teleportation arrays. For a moment, the forces deployed where evenly matched, as the equipment used by both sides was comparable, however the Dominatus began deploying hyperspecialized Predator interceptors to begin turning the tide, as well as Reaper Class Gunships in order to attack the Dragon Tanks on the ground. As soldiers approached, the open-plan cities became mazes as forcefield generators powered up, barricading several roads. The Dominatus also began deploying combat harvesters to the ground, many an ITN tank crew fell as the mining lasers on the tentacles of the harvesters ripped open the tops of their tanks, and pried them from their armored cockpits.
Commander - What is the word from the field?
Officer - We're getting torn apart sir. We're getting reports that tanks are being torn open to get at crews inside.
Crews were dragged out of their tanks by the towering monstrosities and turned into Tyranny troops as their life force was drained by the machinery inside of them, as their pain was emanated as a sonic weapon from the nexus of the metallic beasts.
Soldier - Fuck... We're supposed to fight these things?
As Tyranny troops marched into the cities, combat drones flew along rooftops and sniped at passing Myrmidons. Myrmidons fell by incredible amounts, not being able to fight well in a city, and were instead withdrawn to the outskirts. Walls of myrmidons built up around the cities as it seemed the forces had reached a deadlock in the urban environment.
In the Bowels of Tharif PrimeEdit
It was a temporary moment of relief for the ITN troops on the ground, although the Dominatus had deployed Titans of Corpulus to the sewers below the city from the outside, away from the forcefields. Ground legions kept inside buildings in order to protect themselves and fire on advancing Tyranny troops. Plasma cannons were used against tanks. Titans quickly came across forcefields within the sewers, backed up by heavy metal gates. The Tyranny's non overseer troops stopped advancing and formed a cordon around the city, as they waited for the overseers to penetrate. A Dominatus Sorcerer from Occult Operations was then teleported to the front of the overseer advance, one trained well in the arts of decay.
Some soldiers had been deployed in the seweres. Their full-body combat hardsuits protected them from the smell and rot within the sewers. The Dominatus was enshrouded in a cloud of flies, masking all of his armor, and was teleported to the gate which had as of now stopped the overseers. With all his might, he began to concentrate the forces of entropy and decay towards the gate, as his monstrous powers began to take effect. A squad of Sankana soldiers spotted something wrong with one of the gates, they used the walls of a junction ot take cover and readied their weapons. They noticed the gates seemed to be breaking down, but not from force of blows, but by force of age and decay from the other side as they heard the buzzing of essence flies.
Sankana - It rotting. Enemies using nanotech?
Sankana - Probably. Prepare fire.
The wall finally broke apart as the Dominatus unleashed the decay on the Sankana Troops while the Titans advanced. Sankana were shocked to see that numerous body parts were jutting from the Titans of Corpulus, arms, mouths, eyes, everything.
Sankana - They disgusting!
The Sankana soldiers set their viewsets to provide a 'simplified' appearence, one that did not disgust them and they fired back. Furthermore, they noticed that their comrades near to death did not die as they should, but were somehow subsumed into the Titans, as their body parts and appendages appeared on them. The foul magic of the sorcerer quickly eroded at the armor of the Sankana, at a much faster rate than at the gate as they noticed their faceplates steadily be consumed as the flies entered them and consumed them from inside out.
Sankana - Command. Enemies in sewers! Containment protocols failing, prepare for--
The only other sound that was heard was buzzing. The forces of the Dominatus continued to advance towards the forcefield generator through the sewers, so as to disable it. The Dominatus forces continued approaching the emitters, so as to be able to allow thier forces on the surface to continue attacking. The Dominatus figured out the emitters were buried under the rock, and thus that they needed to blow up the tunnels themselves in order to get to them. Quickly, they began to beam down powerful antimatter explosives to the locations where the forcefield did not reach and positioned those explosives throughout the tunnels. At every step the garrison ambushed them, knowing the tunnels better than the dominatus, they fired back, hoping to stop them.
Although the valiant efforts of the garrison stalled the Dominatus troops, the Titans of Corpulus who now roamed the sewers eventually overpowered them. However, they had bought the other defenders some time. They exfiltrated from the blast radius and blew them up as the tunnels collapsed on them, and the forcefields in some areas were shattered. As the shields started flickering, heavy Dominatus ground artillery commenced firing at the city with a heavy kinetic weaponry. In the bunkers, the surviving civillians could feel the ground shale and the rumble as the city above was gradually destroyed. Reaper LCass Gunships commenced fire on the foundations of structures so as to destroy the urban environment and turn it into a land more conducive to the Dominatus. The massive fusilade of cannonry all pinpointed and falling down at once caused a deafening noise that could be heard for miles, and started a small earthquake. Although the city itself was reduced to dust, the bunkers underground remained perfectly intact, while the service tunnels were merely weakened. The Dominatus looked over the ruined ashes of what was once a city and demanded a 3D scan of the area, where he found what semeed to be elevators going deep underground. There msut have been dozens of elevators, but there was one in the centre that connected to all the others.
Don't You Worry ChildEdit
The Dominatus strategists did not know how to approach the problem that lay before them, it seemed impossible to reach the bunkers. However, soon, they received a transmission from Honor Guard Meshuggah Metallicus, advocating the use of The Anathemae of Xenomortis. After a short review of their capabilities, the go signal was given for their deployment on the ground. The overseers, around 5,5 meters in length for their average variety, prowled the streets, looking for any survivors.
The Overseers found what appeared to be a small Draconis boy, still wandering across the wasteland, seemingly unscathed by the carnage around him. From intelligence, the Dominatus knew that they needed the biometric scan of a PDF soldier to access the bunkers. They needed a way to pry one of them out of the tunnels, to use them to open up the elevator.
The boy panted, frightened at the carnage. During the evacuation he had gotten lost. The child was eventually surrounded by the Anathemae, who after giving him a moment to scream, unleashed tentacles from their midsection, which unfurled into facehugging apparatus that sent a parasite into the boy's nervous system. Using the Dalek brain inside of them, one of the overseers was able to telepathically control the attached parasite, and therefore the boy, who they ordered to go to the elevator shaft. Once the boy entered the room, he started talking into the PA.
Boy - Daddy, can you come get me? It's cold outside.
PD soldier - Who is this?
Boy - It's me, don't you recognize me?
PD- Hold on, tell me your name and I will see what I can do.
Boy - Alius Vortimion.
Terenus, a soldier stationed at the security station stood up as he heard the conversation.
Terenus - ...Alius?
Alius - It's me Dad, help me!
The boy silently began crying.
Terenus - Alius stay calm. Someone send an elevator up.
PD soldier - Are you mad, the surfacei crawling with Tyranny troops!
Terenus - My son is out there! Now let him in!
The sobbing grows louder and louder.
PD soldier - You know protocol. Once the doors shut we cannot allow anyone in or out until the all-clear signal is given.
Alius - Don't let them get me, please don't!
Terenus - If we don't do something my son will die!
PD soldier - I will risk it. We are charged with protecting thousands down here I will not open the doors to save one person.
Terenus - I won't leave him out there!
Terenus pushed the soldier aside and entered into the console to open the doors. As he input the final sequence, the soldier shot him in the leg.
After some time, the doors eventually opened, with the boy alone by himself, walking out. The boy ran to his father, and gave him a hug.
PD soldier - Someone get this boy into quarantine now. You too Terenus.
Terenus embraced his son and held him tightly. As they turned back to put the boy in captivity , the Anathemae began to emerge from the lift, sprinting at full speed towards the Draconis.
PD soldier - OPEN FIRE!
The boy, under control, hit the switch so that it could be controlled from the surface as well.
Terenus - Alius what are you doing!
Alius - It was so lonely, so very lonely!
Turrets, sentries and droids fired on the Anathamae as they emerged out. At that, Alius attacked Terenus.
Terenus - *tried to fight off his son* Those are monsters Alius!
The Anathemae, at such a close range and in such close quarters were at a slight advantage, as their enemy had never fought them before, and the fighting was reduced to melee combat. Alius merely moaned in response to his father’s pleas.
Terenus - Alius?
From the Overseers bellies sprang tentacles which attacked the faces of the Draconis, turning them into mindless slaves as well, while they pummeled others with more conventional attacks. The elevator shuttled back to the surface as well, continuing to bring in more Anathemae each trip.
Commander - Seal off the entire entry level NOW!
They crawled across walls, attacking, striking, covering the refuge of Draconis with the blood and ichor of those who were supposed to be saved. The entry level was eventually overrun, but was soon quarantined by the competent commander. There was now a line, however thin, between his people's lives and death. The Draconis waited behind their gates, hoping that it would prevent the enemy from entering.
Commander - Damn these Dominatus. Damn the mall to the blackest and most empty reaches of the void!
In order to counteract this, the Dominatus began sending concussion demolition charges down the mineshaft, which were placed at the gate. After size scans were made, the Dominatus sent down Reaper Class Gunships and Grox Overseers in order to break down the fearsome barricade. The Gunships, which fit in the cavernous spaces, soon began opening fire on the gate with all manner of rocketry and cannon. While they did this, the Grox Overseers primed their siege drills and prepared to change against the wall.
Commander - We're losing containment. Gas the quarantine chamber now!
On his command, the quarantine zone was flooded with nanotechnology that chewed up any vehicle or overseer it did not recognize. The remaining overseers began retreating up the elevators while the gas took effect. They watched as before their eyes they were devoured by the gas. The commander smiled as they retreated. As the gas was swept in to the soldiers, the nanites attacked the parasites.
Dominatus 1 - These fucks have countermeasures for everything.
Dominatus 2 - Destroy the elevator, then EMP the whole complex.
Dominatus 1 - That will prevent our equipment from functioning as well.
Dominatus 2 - I don't care, do it.
Fade Into DarknessEdit
The Draconis heard the sound of the elevator exploding, then suddenly, all the lights went out.
Commander - What? Activate the backup generators, quickly.
Soldier - EMP sir, everything that was working is dead.
Commander - So we can resort a power supply but we can't run anything that was on when the EMP hit? Perfect.
The Anathemae crawled down the wreck that was once the elevator shaft, down to the base, back to the gates, and began spewing acid at it.A single Dominatus was sent down as well, but to no ones surprise, his equipment stopped working as well.
Dominatus 3 - Hmph.
Much time passed as the acid of the Anathemae wore away at the gates of the quarantine zone. The Draconis there were shrouded in Darkness, but some at the gate were noticing something changing.
Soldier - Erm... I think that gate is going to blow.
The gate soon eventually crumbled, and the line between the two darkness’s was gone. Anathemae began rushing into the once safeguarded zone, where everyone was reduced to melee combat. The soldiers had to go into battle without faceplates as the EMP had disabled their HUDs. The soldiers found out that there guns did not work, and were forced to draw melee implements. The Overseers tentacles attacked the now unprotected faces of the soldiers and began the unpleasant process of implanting the parasite.
Commander - Damn them all, we're done for.
Acid wore away at flesh and bone and the muscle of the overseers tore through wings. The screams of agony were silenced by the implanatation of the parasites. The Anathemae continued pouring in, and so did death, in a place that was meant to preserve life.
Commander - Someone send a courier to ANY nearby bunker. Any one that still has an energy supply. We need to let the Imperium know!
On his word, a courier ran for one of the trams that led to another bunker in the hop of sending a transmission.
Fast and FuriousEdit
The World of Morpheus was once an industrialized but verdant Draconis world that supplied consumer goods to the Draconid Imperium. However, with the Dominatus invasion and the accompanying virus bombs, it had been turned into a desert wasteland where the only sounds made was the clanking of Dominatus machinery, the sounds of loading equipment, and the march of the Myrmidons. It served as an important supply point in the Dominatus's Andromedan Invasion and was accorded what Dominatus planners deemed an adequate garrison. In direct defense of the central citadel stood a guard of 50,000 myrmidons, 10,000 chiliarchs and 1,000 overseers as well as a minor armored force as well as a few surprises the Dominatus had in store for the Draconis. Nightmare spires stretched from the bowels of the planet to the sky and served as the Dominatus' administrative center on the planet, where the planetary administrator and his AIs handled the logistics of the campaign. Surrounding the Citadel were two concentric rings of defensive emplacements, bunkers and trenchworks , the inner ring elevated over the outer ring. The inner ring had both stationary artillery and anti aircraft while the outer ring consisted of direct fire weapons. Each ring was manned by Chiliarchs and Myrmidons, with Overseers close to the Citadel ready to be deployed as a strategic reserve. The Dominatus thought that this point was safe from enemy attack and that it could safely refuel their massive fleets. Little did they know that Hel'brek , the Blademaster himself, was coming to shatter this illusion.
The first indication the world had it was under attack was an otherwise unassuming atmospheric disturbance. Air pressure and humidity dropped in scattered pockets, temperatures rose and wind speeds picked up. Without warning, these disturbances erupted into shimmering gateways, from which poured a bombardment of concussive and anti-armour artillery. The accurate fire rammed into the trenchworks, creating damage where the precise barrages hit. The Tyranny's forces, according to their protocols and algorithms as well as the leadership of the overseers began firing counterbattery fire at the portals. The Fordanta had predicted this outcome based on prior experience; fire on the portals was useless as they were one-way openings. Instead they were a lure for the Tyranny's fire, while the true invasion swept in from above.
Waves of landing craft, specially designed to evade most known detection measures, fell in vertical strike vectors, disgorging their troops as they fell. Turning close to the ground and deploying concussion mines ahead of the landing troops, they sped off into the firing arcs of the AI gunners, distracting their fire further. One particularly perceptive overseer whose insight would not survive this battle directed that the Anti-air weapons refocus their fire on the dropping Fordan troops. However, the weapons, accustomed to attacking larger craft, were less useful against the Fordan infantry.The Tyranny's troops began firing upwards at the descending Fordanta and they began angling their defensive turrets inwards in order to make the dropzones killzones. As the Fordan Legions descended, they kicked in their jetpacks to stabilise themselves. Elite Warriors and more specialised troops primed their heavier weapons, targeting defensive turrets and clusters of troops. Clutches of Fordanta were shot from the sky by chance fire, but of the twenty thousand Fordanta committed to the landing, only a scant thousand failed to make planetfall.
In the midst of the enemy lines, the Fordanta immediately found themselves embattled on all sides. Working quickly and methodically to clear their landing areas and form fighting circles with their brethren, the weaker and less experienced quickly took wounds and casualties, but the experience and lethality of their leaders quickly turned the battle in their favour. The Dominatus Administrator decided to deploy the overseer strategic reserve. However, having been recently appointed and consigned to a rather unglamorous position, he lacked the insight to concentrate his forces on any one part. Instead, he divided his 1000 Horsemen of Destiny overseers, the entire overseer force into 10 groups of 100 and sent them to charge at the forming Fordan circles. Meanwhile, Chiliarchs and Myrmidons fought losing battles against the Fordans, as artillery fire and Fordan infantry destroyed them and their defensive emplacements.
Tactical reports had indicated a strong presence of Horsemen at the site, and the Fordanta had drawn their plans accordingly. Artisans launched clusters of grav-mines into the air at head height, while elite Knights drew spears and readied the Warriors around them to receive the coming charges. Wasting no time, the Warriors fired rapid streams of plasma at the mounts' level, aiming to cut the riders down and force them to fight on foot. This spectacle, however, was just that. While the obliteration of this planet's defence forces was certainly a worthy battle for the fresh soldiers sent into the fray, but the true task at hand was to acquire the administrative centre's databanks and any other relevant tactical data. For all the arms and armor of the overseer charge, it's piecemeal nature as well as the massive precautions taken against it meant that it did not achieve anything close to what was needed for victory. Overseers who were knocked to the ground when concentrated fire knocked out their mounts were sitting ducks as they tried to get to their feet, and momentum worked agaisnt them as they charged into spears where not even the toughness of the overseers could withstand the spears used against them. While where they did inflict damage when they charged into Fordanta not wielding spears, the charge was, after some tedious fighting defeated, and the planetary defense force was emasculated.
To this end, a Legion of highly trained Infiltrators had secretly deployed into the facility itself, picking apart its internals and data clusters. The infiltrators, who entered through the nooks and crannies were Dominatus did not think anyone could infiltrate through, rapidly set about getting a map of the premises, collecting data, as well as other acts of espionage. After going through the unencrypted yet abstruse systems of the Dominatus databanks, they determined that the central controls of the spire where in the main room, where the Dominatus administrator probably lurked. Hel' and a few dozen his most elite Praetorians entered and navigated quickly but cautiously until they reached the door to the control center, where the Dominatus inside had dispatched a call for reinforcements after finally determining that the situation was bad enough to warrant them.
Hel'Bre'K's chosen warriors ably proved him wrong; a breaching charge vaporised the door, and before the smoke cleared a Hunter had put five inch-thick high explosive slugs into the Administrator's, creating massive holes in the Dominatus in a way similar to a firecracker in a hand clenched around it. As a personal touch Hel' decapitated the Dominatus with an offhand swing, making sure that the facility's communications system caught and broadcast the act. The vaunted regeneration abilities and toughness of the Dominatus was made useless by the pragmatism of Hel' as well and the administrator's stupidity. The purging of the biological abomination by the Praetorian's fire also made sure that the Dominatus was surely dead. An artisan went to the console, where the Dominatus was still logged in with his credentials.
The artisan found and downloaded all the information that the Adminsitrator had access too. The artisan found the Dominatus battle plans in the area, their local fleet deployments as well as other minutiae. However, other information such as the creation of overseers, the galaxy wide Dominatus deployments, the table of organization and equipment of Dominatus among others were still classified as beyond the needed scope of knowledge for the Administrator. As a parting gift, the Artisan entered some commands into the system which still thought him a Dominatus and screwed up the local Dominatus logistics network. With a small treasure trove of data, he nodded to Hel' and told him the mission was complete.
All across Segmentum Draco, well supplied fleets of Dominatus craft raced throughout Imperial Territory. While operationally and tactically, the Dominatus were achieving their objectives due to their fearsome biological constructs, monstrous war machines and overwhelming naval firepower, strategically, the Dominatus were not in command of the situation. Their supply lines, not even able to fully supply their fleets for extended periods of time were incessantly attacked by AGC forces. Recently conquered planets which served as vital resupply nodes were constantly harassed by elite Fordanta troops, who successfully sabotaged the logistics train. While Gravius was able to outwit his numerous ITN enemies on the tactical and operational level, and scored a multitude of victories, the strategic balance of power gradually slipped from beneath him. While Draconis ground positions were almost certainly overrun by the monstrosities thrown forth by the Dominatus, the Imperial Talon Navy did not fret as the Dominatus drew themselves into a more precarious position with each attack.
After many months, the Dominatus offensive was losing steam. Gravius looked at the war-room boards and saw that his forces were getting ever closer to his objective. However, he saw that he was getting farther and farther away from his main supply base. He also saw that the Dominatus had stopped expanding along certain fronts. As opposed to the all conquering wave that had first characterized the invasion force, it was now something resembling an arrow as less supplied elements fell behind and were unable to complete their objectives. He got complaints from Dominatus commanders everywhere requesting more supplies and materiel in order to continue their objectives and to repel their AGC adversaries. Gravius worried as even the industrial centers erected on the planets were sabotaged and thus couldn't provide for the fleets in need of ordnance. The attacks had completely stalled in most parts due to the pressure the AGC had been putting on the logistics train as well as the inability of the Dominatus to push any further . While overall, he was still gaining land, his forces were so overextended keeping ground that the AGC was now confiscating tracts of land from his forces. Undersupplied Mark 2s tried to defend positions against Draconis attackers and were inevitably destroyed, taking their Dominatus commanders with them. In a reversal of previous events, on some planets, the garrisons left behind were now being overrun by Draconis forces who had control over orbit. Even more troubling at this, the AGC was focusing effort on the parts closest to home, meaning that if it continued at the present rate, he would be cut off from supplies.
However, he knew that if he went back, then all of the territories he conquered would be for naught. He would have to give up his gains as his remaining mobile forces raced back to reinforce the border. And even if they did reinforce the border, they would not be in sufficient enough quality of power to defeat concentrated AGC attacks at any one point. Faced with this dilemma, he crossed the Rubicon and directed his remaining fleets towards the objective. His rational pragmatism was replaced by an irrational hope that the AGC was merely guessing at his weakpoints instead of drawing him to his doom, as it really was. He decided that he still could clutch victory and with the elite spearhead of his fleet, a powerful formation which saw it's roots in the Dominatus initial expansion through the Acheron Region, set off to conquer more land.
Segmentum Adnihilo - EastEdit
Start of HostilitiesEdit
Battle for an Unnamed PlanetEdit
Aside from the main taskforces that were dedicated to the practice of going through the wormhole network of the Draconid Imperium in order to strike at their core worlds, there was also a separate task force, which was working to use prototype Rivshadelman drives in order to navigate their ships. While in a laboratory with experimental conditions this may have worked out perfectly, in real time use, much like the Dominatus were going to find out, the drives failed terribly, causing them to pop up not on a Draconis world, but on that of the feared Xhodocto Dominion, an empire the Tyranny had been trying to avoid for it's omnipotent military for the longest time. However, as soon as they were yanked from their previous area in timespace to another, they knew that they could not handle it with petty speeches and resolutions, but if they were to save themselves, they would have to use blood and iron. As the battle would later tell however, it is not necessarily the smartest of endeavors to go into a contest of brute strength with the god's themselves.
The first thing that the Tyranny saw was a fleet orbiting the world, composed of surreal ships composed of colors that could not logically exist, but were made possible by the macgicks of Xhodocto engineering. Even more unnerving, the size scans of the ships of the Dominion of the Xhodocto had just recently come back, showing that the monsters were at the smallest, 40km. This partially unnerved the Dominatus, who had not only made the Mark 2s big to accomodate the lack of miniaturization in their weaponry, but also to intimidate the foe. The fact that even the smallest of the Dominion ships dwarfed the Tyrant Mark 2s sent chills down the biomass of some of the Dominatus. The first ships to attack the Dominion where the Tyrant Cruiser Mark 2s, some of the most feared and numerous ships in the First Gigaquadrant, who opened up with their banks of subatomic disruptors and Gatling Hyperlasers.
They were less than happy with the returns they got, as even though they knew they were doing damage to the ships of the Dominion, the sheer size of the monstrosities meant that the Dominatus had to blow up more and more in order to just destroy one of them. However, the Dominatus suddenly got return fire from the monsters that they faced, as pure energy lanced out from the surreal Dominion ships, which instantly overwhelmed the shields of some of the smaller Dominatus Cruisers due to their better technology and increased size. Such an event had never happened in Dominatus naval history before, except during the battle with Exodium, but to see this coming from an enemy ship was an unnerving sight. The two navies continued to exchange fire for a prolonged period of time as each took a toll on another. Massively powerful fire from both sides, each salvo enough to flay a planet was fired at the opposing ship, engulfing it in raw power. The Dominatus however, had the advantage of numbers, and soon had destroyed the Dominion ships, but at great cost to themselves, having lost around a dozen Tyrant Mark 2s for each of the 40 km monstrosities that they destroyed. This was instantly relayed to high command, and although high command was rather intimidated by the capabilities of the Dominion, they decided to press on with a land invasion so as to test the capabilities of the ground forces.
Invictus was the capital of the Tyranny's operations within the galaxy, it was the heart of their Andromedan tendril and the base for their invasions, one of which was pushing deep into the Draconid Imperium. But after months of toil on multiple fronts, Angrus Mortarius was finding it harder to protect this important planet. But on this day, he witnessed another worry.
Arriving in orbit, a combined fleet of forces from the Divinarium, Fordan Empire and Draconid Imperium as well as a dozen smaller nations who sought glory in this bloody campaign. Invictus' lines were stretched and buckling as out in the frontier Hel'bre'K's ambushes had been picking off the Tyranny's ships. Angrus watched from within the palace at the heart of the planet's capital, a colossal and twisted hive of towers and tunnels the size of a city. Indeed, the palace itself was a city for giants, watched by Overseers of several creeds, a shard of nightmares rising from the city below as much a titan as them onsters that inhabited it and considered themselves this planet's - perhaps the galaxy's - rightful masters.
Heading the fleet was the TNSS Dominax, the flagship and greatest pride of the Imperial Talon Navy. A twenty-kilometre behemoth starship with the energy output of a G-type star. As they arrived in orbit, Larnus Vontarion sat within the throne-like chair that had been placed at the back of the vessel's grand command chamber. As the Imperial Flagship, this room was as glorious in scope as any throne room granted to royalty. Fitting, for the Lord Admiral was a man charged with the organisation of over a quadrillion soldiers, starship crews, engineers and tacticians. He stood up and held his arms over his stmach, clasping his hands together and strolled down as the ship's projectors began transforming the room into a view of the surface of Invictus from orbit. As he walked, Uriel was standing in a similar posture, staring with a stern expression at the planet below. He experienced Larnus approaching and slowly turned his head. Flanking each side of him, standing far enough apart to let Larnus through were Fordan Praetorians, a gift from this campaign's architect, standing statuesque and clad head-to-toe in armour of the finest make and armed with glaives that glinted from the lights of the palatial command chamber. Both of them were a full head taller than their charge, while making Uriel appear smaller than he really was, presented themselves as terrifying guardians should he be threatened.
Uriel was not expecting a ground battle, the fleet they had brought was more than enough for the garrison that remained in orbit over this hellish world. Rather than his signature armour, he had adorned himself in a brilliantly decorated military uniform, a long navy-blue coat and tunic embroidered with gold and silver thread, with a crimson collar that reached up to his jawline. Over his shoulders, decorated brass epaulettes with gold-thread tassels hanging gracefully from their rims. Over his chest, he war an impressively gilded breastplate, set within the chest was a replica of Drakon's Eye and the necklace in which it was set. This was still a battlefield, not a place for one of the greatest royal heritage treasures. Strapped to his waist however was a beautifully-decorated longsword nestled inside a scabbard of lush red leather edged with silver. The handle was etched with numerous decorative carvings of dragons and warriors that met a red-leather handle.
As Larnus approached, Uriel turned to look at his close friend with a sigh before looking back out towards the planet. he saw the grim landscape of the hellish world that it was even with orbit, it affirmed a superstition that darkness grew over everything the Dominatus touched, a visible corruption that spread like a plague. This was not without reason however, the Dominatus were industrialists, this is how they developed their worlds. These spheres of rock, that luminous orb of plasma, all resources to feed their war machines, expanding in the pursuit of domination. It sickened them both, men who had grown up to respect the universe the laws of reality had crafted, random chance had given way to sublime beauty, it disgusted the two Draconis that the Dominatus would do such a thing. In his eloquent and disciplined baritone, Larnus spoke out. Uriel turned his head, contemplation of the grim task ahead clearly evident upon his features. These ships were here for one purpose, the final piece in a grand scheme.
Larnus - Are you ready for this, Uriel.
Uriel - We give them one chance. He can either retreat from this doomed front, or die here.
Larnus - A waste of time Uriel, dominatus intelligent but is confident. I predict they will want warrior's deaths.
Uriel scoffed, curling his lips before turning his full attention to Larnus.
Uriel - Warriors are men of an art, Angrus - although inteligent - is still a butcher. No matter how skilled with rifle or blade he may be.
Larnus - Are you still sore from what he did to you around the core?
Uriel - No. I have not.
Larnus - This should be interesting then. Deliver your ultimatum, my Parag'avatus, the fleet will await the outcome.
Uriel nodded calmly. Larnus nodded back and turned around, walking back towards his throne while Uriel and his protectors dematerialised like sand against the wind. They were not really on the command deck, Uriel wanted to see the action from a special chamber installed by his late brother within the heart of the Dominax, a smaller throne room to act as a personal place for formal communications and meeting dignitaries. For that was what he was about to do.
Angrus was in a command centre deep beneath his palace. He had been anticipating an eventual attack and while the combined fleet were on their way he had time to move. He was a butcher, a killer, he lived for the thrill of battle, but this was a storming of the bastion, he thought, the best place he could be was in the command centre and given the chance he would make a stand here. He had been cut off from more advanced communications by the fleet above, reinforcements would have been days away if there were any, the best they could do was either repel the invaders or wait them out.
As he barked orders, the bunker's comm system indicated a visual transmission directed at them. Angrus had anticipated some form of parley, a cowardly tactic as such things could be interpreted as attempts for the sender to worm their way out of battle, a strange thing for the war-hardened paragon to do. Regardless he accepted the message and there he saw it. Flanked by Fordan Praetorians, elite Blood Dragons and even a Krann at his feet. Uriel sat in his decorated throne, a firm and cold demeanor, those with knowledge could tell he wanted this over with, he did not like doing this and there was perhaps no other way. The near-surroundings were of the elegant decadence the Draconis were known for; this was Uriel's message no question, despite the fact it was a combined military action. Uriel's face quivered and attempted to regain its composure, somehow surprised that Angrus was still alive after he saw the man cleaved in front of his own eyes.
Angrus - So the worm king seeks my approval once again. How quaint of you.
Uriel - Angrus...I do not care how you survived your execution, but I give you once chance for the Tyranny to leave this galaxy and swear never to set engines within it ever again. Your forces are scattered, your defenses compromised and reinforcements will arrive long after the conclusion of the choices you make here today.
Angrus - You know how this will go, i am afraid I cannot surrender to you. I do not fear death or pain.
Uriel - Yes yes I understood the last time. The Commonwealth has more appropriate punishments available and if you agree to retreat, we will not bring our forces to bear on you.
Angrus - So the worm king gives us the choice to either flee from a galaxy not rightfully his, or die within it. You underestimate my strength of character, Uriel, and once this is done I will tear you apart.
Uriel - You are outgunned Angrus. Surrender and you can take what remains of your lives back to your Tyranny.
Angrus - And what of numbers?
Uriel - Inconsequential. Now, your choice.
Angrus was silent for a few moments, playfully weighing up his options, but in truth he did not need to as on another console he waited for the right signal; a flashing light on the panel. When it finally appeared, he gave his answer.
Angrus - My apologies, worm king, but I will not surrender. You however...the option exists.
Uriel - Excuse me?
Angrus gave a tooth-filled and disturbed smile before cutting off the communication at his end. As Uriel thought for a moment, an alert siren blared across the ship, forcing Uriel from his seat. Slowly pacing towards the hallways' doors he heard disturbed screams outside as well as a hellish din. He beckoned for his guards to follow and they opened the door to peer outside. The seam let the horror play at full volume; crewman and marines screamed in a horrific melody as their bodies were torn apart by cacophonic soundwaves, pulsing from ornate rifles carried by Draconis alsmost twice as alrge as him, their decorated helmets almost scraping the ceiling of the corridor. Their armour of an almost hypnotic beauty in its craft, shifted and twisted to fit their forms as they moved, each of them bellowed out laughing, adding to the twisted sounds.
Uriel could not take it for more than a few seconds and slammed the door. Two Praetorians stood at its entrance as Uriel walked back to his throne, holding his longsword's hilt tightly but not pulling it from its sheath. The din from outside grew louder, Uriel was an important target, was this Angrus' plan all along? Uriel needed to be ready for battle and intructed for servants attending hi min the chamber to help him into his armour while his protectors kept watch. The servants complied, and walked with Uriel to the personal armoury nearby, under escort in case of ambush.
Pleasure in PainEdit
Uriel walked under escort though the halls of the area of the Dominax dedicated for his, and to an extent his family's, personal residence aboard ship. he walked with concern, his eyes darting everywhere, constantly concerned for any ambushes. The Draconis he saw scarred his mind, he remembered the events of the Deep Core Blitzkrieg still fresh, the spark that ignited this campaign. The "Sons of Hedon" he remembered, twisted sociopathic shells mutated and conditioned by the Dminatus as supersoldiers and lieutenants to maintain their empire. Their hideous forms were swelled and strengthened by a serum only the Dominatus were twisted enough to create.
There was a thumping near a corridor wall as the escort walked past, the wall shattered a few metres forward of their position and tearing through it was an even larger Draconis aberrant, clad in etched golden armour shaped to define a naked, muscular form and bulked to give him a more imposing figure. He turned his figure, dwarfing everyone before him. Wrapped in his golden hand was a pistol, the muzzle was surrounded by what looked like a contorted and vicious-looking mouth. Feeling threatened, two Blood Dragons charged towards the aberrant. This attacker however, was none other than Hedon himself, the disturbed progenitor of the Sons.
In seeing the two charging soldiers, Hedon lifted the pistol and with a deafening wine, propelled a concentrated blast of compressed air that threw one of the Dragons backwards, screeching as it travelled and met with the twisted and contorted screams of pain the Dragon endured. Drawing a fine sabre, he fired a few more times, crushing the ceramics in blasts of air so compressed it was akin to slamming the Dragon with a concrete wall. As the other Dragon came charging, Hedon lifted the sword and the two blades clashed with great inertia, sending the Dragon backwards, gyrating the blade in its hand as if the weapon were a baton. He clashed again and again before swinging its tail into the Dragon who was slammed into a wall by the tip. In one swift stroke, the blade came travelling and sliced though the Dragon's armour, severing him at the waist. Hdon, in some twisted pleasure, left the blade in place for a few moments before slowly lifting it away, gyrating the sword with his wrist before turning to Uriel. The creature took a few pounding steps forward, a vocoder set into his helmet distorted his voice into something twisted and otherworldly.
Hedon - So Master Mortarion's estimation proved true, for a man of such renown you are incredibly easy to predict
Uriel stepped back a few paces and pulled his sword form his scabbard, As his hand passed over the grip, the sword began to glow a luminescent blue as he held it out. Hedon chuckled and swung his sword down after gyrating it upwards, a deafening and fizzling clang as the two blades clashed. The Draconis laughed again and swung upwards, Uriel parried, he parried another blow. Uriel staggered back, worried by the immense strength of his attacker.
Hedon laughed out of some twisted sense of joy, as Uriel tried to retaliate, the aberrant lord stepped back and goaded the Paragon. After catching his breath he charged only for Hedon to sidestep and swing his word to cut off Uriel's left wing, causing the paragon to roar in pain as he turned around.
Hedon - The little worm-king, slayer of gods, afraid of a minor injury?
Uriel - That was not "minor"
Hedon - How quaint such excuses are, I thought you were a killer.
Uriel radied himself, this time swinging his blade to strike at Hedon's legs. To spare himself from damage, Hedon sent his sword downwards to block the strike before twisting the blade upwards to cut at uriel's head, narrowly missing and causing a nick in Uriel's jawline, sending him back a step. Heson sent his sword down again after more gyrations, Uriel found himself frantically blocking these monstrous blows, one such strike he parried on his left side but Hedon merely twisted the blade and hacked off his other wing. The pressure and the pain from his wing sent him onto one of his knees.
As Uriel panted Hedon sent a large armoured foot into uriel's stomach, sending him backwards to collapse onto the floor. Laying on the floor in pain, his garb stained a dark crimson from the blood from his wings. Satisfied at his victory, Hedon's helmet split and cascaded to fold up behind his head, revealing his patterned scales of amber and his monstrous reddened eyes, his large, intricately carved horns and his long, braided jet-black dreadlocks. He gracefully stepped towards Uriel, one foot in front of the other in a motion that exemplified his grace and the sliding movement of the golden plates on his muscle-shaped armour, all the while a disturbing cackle escapes from his vicious tooth-filled jaws, stepping close enough that he cast his head directly down, meaning in order to see his face Uriel had to look past his chiselled golden armour.
Hedon - Oh how the proud fall...Lady Medusa is going to enjoy my gift to her!
Uriel - You think you can win?
Hedon lowered himself and spread his hand over Uriel's torso to press him into the floor, Uriel began to struggle for air as Hedon lowered his had to Uriel's face. That horrific smile occupied most of Uriel's vision as he descended, as he reached out to claw Hedon the Draconid colossus caught sight and wrapped his hand around Uriel's arm, pushing it back down as he shook his head.
Hedon - Naughty naughty. Struggle all you like, because quite frankly, I could do with watcinh you squirm after all the pain you caused my lady Medusa.
Uriel - She...she can...die in a pi--
Hedon moved his arm, applying pressure to Uriel's chest with his elbow as he reached his hand to clamp Uriel's jaws shut, triggering a reactionary response for Uriel to struggle about like a tied-down animal. The spectacle only exited Hedon more as he leaned to the side of Uriel's head and whispered into his ear.
Hedon - When I return you to her, Ohoho she will be pleased... Such energy, such power. Perhaps...I'm sure she won't mind.
Uriel's eyes widened and he struggled harder to escape, met with increasing pressure from Hedon's elbow, now panicking with his head kept firmly in place by Hedon's iron grip, the broader his horrific smile became before it transformed into a sinister laugh. He let go of Uriel's jaw and passed his hand over the cuirass Uriel was wearing, digging his claws into the metal and warping it before tearing it off with fearsome brute strength and throwing it aside. As he leaned in closer however, Uriel took his oppertunity and launched his head forward, clamping his jaws around Hedon's cheek, causing the aberrant lord to strangely cry out in both euphoria and pain before jolting backwards, sending Uriel flying over his head and to the other side of the corridor.
As Uriel slammed into the metalwork, Hedon stood up and pressed his hand to the injury with a twisted smile. He took several steps forward, within a few steps however, he began slowing down, he tried to move his hand from his injury with a little difficulty but he felt it in his palm; saliva. Uriel's bite had stained his face with his fluids but as he found it increasingly difficult to move his face twisted stiffly into a snarl. Uriel meanwhile attempted to get to his feet as Hedon lurched towards him, struggling against the crippling poison now flowing throughout his bloodstream. It was not burning pain however, but numbness, Hedon was slowly losing all feeling within his twisted body as she shambled ,attempting to reach out and grab Uriel in anger. Now recovered from his battle with asphyxiation, Uriel stood up with some weariness and reached to grab a glaive that was once wielded by a Blood Dragon.
Uriel posed as Hedon plodded forwards, the poision working its way though, by all accounts Hedon should have been paralysed, slipping into unconsciousness and death by now, instead he continued to lurch, growing angry from the growing realisation that Uriel had crippled him, a fate for a perfectionist like him as something worse than death.
Uriel charged and with all his strength, drove the glaive into Hedon's naval, spraying his modified blood across Uriel's face and front as he drive the glaive inwards, baring his teeth with incredible pressure one could have crushed bone between them. Driven in far enough, Uriel shifted the glaive about, destroying Hedon's innards before summoning all his strength to force Hedon over, sending the aberrant warlord crashing onto his side. In doing so, Uriel shifted the glaive up but left it into the body as he panted, taking a few steps back.
Dark But Undeniable TruthsEdit
Uriel looked out over the carnage, the gigantic golden corpse dwarfing his former bodyguards, whos' remains lay sprayed across the room. As he observed and contemplated what had just happened, his comm device alerted him. Activating it, Larnus' voice was on the other end. The reassuring tone of his friend calmed Uriel as relief washed over him that despite the attack, Larnus was still alive.
Larnus - Uriel? Uriel can you respond.
Uriel - I am here Larnus, what is your situation on the command deck?
Larnus - A few Sons tried to breach us, caught sight of a few other species as well, we lost many good men and women from this and I think one of them almost gutted me were it not for entharis Tarmia helping me out.
Uriel - Be sure to award the entharis a commendation for her efforts in service under you.
Larnus - That...might not be possible, she risked her life Uriel.
Uriel's features dropped in horror, swallowing his relief in the process. After a few seconds, sorrow became frustration, transforming finally into outright anger as his features sharpened viciously, subconsciously clenching his fists in the process as he lowered his head.
Uriel - They will pay..Admiral, prapre to fire the free neutron bomb.
On the command deck Larnus was suddenly shocked and turned to look at several crew-members, suddenly becoming apprehensive as he paced around assessing the damage, shaking his head in disbelief.
Larnus - My paragavatus, are you certain of this? A rather excessive retribution for their transactions.
Uriel - Larnus, I am giving you an order. Load a free neutron bomb and fire.
Larnus - Uriel-- Uriel listen to me. We can glass the planet, wipe out all trace, we do not have to--
Uriel - Angrus survived his previous execution, I will not let him escape another!
Larnus ran his fingers down the ridges of his snout and took a deep breath. In regaining his composure, he turned to look towards his communicator.
Larnus - I will have a warhead prepared, paragavatus. For the record however, I do not advocate its common use.
Uriel - Noted.
As Uriel was about to sign off he heard a sinister laugh coming from behind him. Disturbed, he slowly turned around to see Hedon performing a mixture of coughing and chuckling. He moved his head as best he could to look directly into Uriel's eyes.
Hedon - Master Angrus was correct...all-- along.
Uriel took a few steps closer, he picked up his sword and walked cautiously towards Hedon.
Uriel - ...E-excuse me?
Hedon - "A worm that-- that exhibits our traits." You think you are superior, that you could not-- possibly sink to their level. You're a butcher Uriel...A killer, a destroyer of worlds. I see it in your eyes; how many aliens, be they innocent or guilty, civillian or soldier, have died because they got in your way. Your hands are stained vividly with their blood...It does not bother you does it--
Uriel - Kranndung!
Hedon - NO! He-- He was right. You...deny it. But...your mind is Dominatus.
Uriel - I am nothing like your masters, I would never commit the kind of genocide or nightmarish horrors that they did!
Hedon - They did it-- to survive...and...thrive. No weakness, no mercy, no backing down. Sound-- familiar?
Uriel's face twisted and contorted with horror as he rested his hand on the shaft of the glaive protruding viscerally from Hedon's naval he held it tightly, not wanting to accept the truth, even turning away as Hedon smiled devilishly.
Hedon - Lord Angrus admired...you. Lady Medusa...feared you. You exhibit their traits, your only crime is...you...you are not Dominatus in body.
Uriel - I have heard enough
Hedon suddenly lurched out and grabbed Uriel's arm, pulling him towards him with what strength remained.
Hedon - Do not...deny it.
Uriel - Unhand me, me monster!
Hedon slammed his hand into the right side of Uriel's head, extending a claw, uriel felt a wet sensation as Hedon's claw dug into the flesh around his eye, with precision he carved an affectation around the eye ridge, a symbol personal to Hedon himself, only just finishing before Uriel swung the sword and sliced though the hand, severing the connection and spraying himself with blood. Hedon looked on with glee as Uriel took the glaive and pulled it upwards, tearing into Hedon's upper chest.
The momentum caused Uriel to take a couple of steps back as he clenched the sword firly in his hands and stared at Hedon with furious eyes.
Hedon, still entranced by the ecstasy of the sensations he was feeling laughed and taunted Uriel as his regenerative forces struggled against the poison which inhibited it and the plasma which seared whatever flesh tried to form around it. Aware of his own mortality and his inevitable end, he laughed and laughed, taunting Uriel and driving the Paragon into the darkest recesses of his mind. Hedon, the golden giant incapacitated and barely able to move was unleashing a weapon more potent than any sword given to him by his masters - words which spoke of the realities the Paragon had tried to avoid in his idealism.
Hedon - Is The Dominatus-Paragon still too weak too strike the final blow?
Uriel clenched the sword tighter, bearing his teeth before raising the blade and thrusting it downwards, panting as he did so. The word's plasma field barely singed the flesh of Hedon's neck as Uriel drove the sword into the marble stonework, the blade barely missing the giant's neck. Hedon watched as the sword's edge barely nicked the flesh of his neck, and he laughed, opening his mouth slighly due to being mindful of the superhot razor edge inches below his jaw.
Hedon - Weakling! Even with all the power you could ask for you are still weak!
Uriel stood with the hilt firmly in his hand, looking to Hedon and panting heavily as he clenched both of his fists, glaring at the monster. He lowered his head and scowled, looking away form his opponent's head. He whispered to himself, a muttered tone but still enough for Hedon's modified ears to pick up, a solemn and sinister word.
Hedon tilted his head slightly, curious but also relieved.
Hedon - No? Admission of your defeat Uriel? Would your daughter approve of your decision, after all we've been through?
Uriel - Is it weakness to resist instinct?
Hedon's superconductor based brain, and enhanced postsapient intelligence, improved by his Dominatus education was at a loss for an answer. He had never thought of the concept of restraint and the introduction of the concept was rather foreign. So he replied with the only answer he could think of.
Hedon - Yes...
Uriel - My blood screams. It screams for your demise. My mind demands your blood be spilled. It demands I submit to that which makes me no more than an animal. And yet I do not, do you understand why?
Hedon had no taunt left, no witty riposte, and lay down, listening to Uriel intently. For the sake of his pride, he refused to answer his opponent's question with "no". Uriel lifted his sword from the damage he made and moved closer to Hedon's ear.
Uriel - Proof, Hedon. Proof that I can do something your masters show no sign of. I am mindful, monster.
Hedon - What would that be?
Uriel began to pace around Hedon's resting head, observing him with a scowl as he sheathed his blade and looked the monster over, pacing around the mouth and towards his crown.
Uriel - Because no matter how much I despise your visage, how your very existence is an insult to my kind or how you serve only an animal. I refuse to submit to it.
Hedon was now seething with frustration, becoming sick of Uriel's mind games. Bearing those teeth of his, sharp as a scalpel's edge and harder than any diamondoid material, he simply lay there as Uriel knelt down and looked straight into The behemoth's left eye, who was unable to strike the Paragon because of the poison in his veins and could do naught but listen.
Uriel - Because that is what elevates me from a mindless scavenger on the plains. --- Hedon snapped in an instant, now at his wits end and all pretence of culture and hedonism broke down into an unrestrained rage. Flailing and shrieking, despite the poison Hedon breathed fire through the implants given to the Sons by the Dominatus in a manner which tarnished and scorched what it could but did not hurt Uriel, a jet of flame roaring from his mouth, burning all it touched. Though coincidence or some design, the fames failed to touch him. Hedon tried desperately to attack Uriel with his burning breath but the convulsions and his emotional state rendered him unable to do anything except flail around like a dead fish.
Uriel backed away with surprise and watched as the giant writhed in the middle of his observation room. Then, there was a flash from the observation window. Invictus, the planet below, began to dissolve and break apart, the window itself being right in front of Hedon's view. The white hot fire being breathed was supplemented and cooled by the tears that Hedon had as he began to sob at the sight of Invictus destroyed.
As they had talked, Larnus had given the signal, the two in the observation room watched as the ship's targeting systems registered a successful impact. He watched with a sneer as the planet began to dissolve within a few minutes. Continents became ashen no matter the biome, fractured, then liquefied before turning into vapour within the space of minutes. Cracks in the surface spewed jets of vapour as the planet dissolved into gas and then dissipated into nothing. The molecular bonds and the atoms themselves that made up every single thing on the planet breaking down before the atoms themselves are shattered by free neutrons colliding like the wrecking balls that they were, a cascade reaction that rendered the planet into nothingness.
Obliteration had met the residents of Invictus, and all Uriel and Hedon could do was watch as the planet became one with the vacuum. Using hijacked satellites he focused the viewscreen on Angrus' palace. He watched with a twisted satisfaction as the palace's structure fractured and dissolved into the air, biodrones, Overseers and Dominatus alike were caught in this unstoppable horror, their bodies becoming vapour in seconds. Standing at the steps and looking up was Angrus as his body gradually dissipated. Uriel could not help but smirk, Angrus was not as bad as medusa, in fact he recalled the warlord had in some cases admired Uriel, but an enemy was an enemy.
Finally, everything became vapour, the city, the landscape, the crust, the core, the Dominatus, Angrus, not a single trace of the planet was left from the detonation that crept up though the core like a rising malevolence. The fleet's work was complete.
As he watched the fleet move away, he suddenly realised the gravity of what had transpired. An entire planet had been obliterated by his own hand, sentencing millions to a silent death. It made him think, watching the monster flail about before him that perhaps Hedon was right, that all that separated him from the Dominatus was his biology. He tried his best to dismiss these words, hoping that Hedon was merely toying with him.
Most of Invictus' overseer force was composed of the Sons of Hedon, and with the destruction of Invictus, their father saw countless numbers of his Sons perish.
Uriel meanwhile waited, watching as Hedon was reduced to an enormous gold-plated child child, flailing every part of his body as his world crumbled around him. He lowered his head solemnly and drew his sword, this time not activating the blade's plasma field and instead he rested the tip on the marble floor. Everything that he had held precious disappeared in that instant and he eventually stopped convulsing and lay on the floor. Despite the horror of this cataclysm - the end of this world, his masters and everything he knew, his tormentor stood as calm as a statue, his brow furrowed and his head low.
Hedon - So what is there left ... finish me.
Uriel - No. I will not send you to the void.
Hedon attempted to stand, though mostly regenerated was too much in shock to do anything except fall to his knees in front of Uriel as he tried to stand up. He looked at Uriel with a face that none had perhaps seen in the monster since his first years of existence - A feeling of vulnerability.
Hedon - So what do you want?
Uriel - I demand nothing, but offer repentance.
Hedon - Repentance for doing what I have known my whole life? Repentance for pursuing my purpose?
Uriel - As...As much as I may despise what you are and what you have done. You...you only obeyed.
Uriel began to pace in front of Hedon, looking up into his eyes despite how intently such an act disturbed his psyche. He cleared his throat and replied.
Uriel - "Forgive those who live only to follow, for they are instruments. And an instrument cannot be blamed for how it is used."
Hedon - So what is the purpose of my life now? What is my use?
Uriel - That is your choosing. As...as is the right of all Drakon's....children.
Hedon slumped his head and looked at his reflection in the pool of his blood spilled on the floor. He looked at his reflection pondering his existence, For if Invictus had fallen, the rest of the DOminatus in Andromeda could not fight and all of them would be destroyed. He knew Medusa would never surrender and that the fate of the Tyranny's forces were sealed, including all of the Sons deployed to Andromeda, for at the end of the Andromedan Campaign around 90% of the Sons would surely be dead. Uriel lifted his sword and walked to Hedon's side, muttering into his ear.
Uriel - I offer you a chance to redeem yourself.
Hedon - How?
Uriel - Join your kind. Where you belong.
Hedon - How am I to join, I am a pariah who cannot hide himself.
Uriel - Then demonstrate your desire.
Hedon - I am the Draconis embodiment of a Dominatus. Do you think it is possible for me to change?
Uriel - You and Angrus used such words to describe me.
Hedon - Fitting words they are. Though you seem to demonstrate something you have pointed out my masters do not have - Wisdom. Perhaps, if it is possible, you are not just Dominatus, you are something above.
Uriel - Then you accept my offer?
Hedon - I accept.
Hedon was still shaken, but he attempted his best to stand up despite his remaining injuries, his body still stiff from the neurotoxin that coarsed though his veins and down his nervous system. He gave a solemn and grateful nod to Uriel and attempted his best to leave the observation room, his footsteps leaving strange footprints from the blood that collected around him and stained his boots, leaving Uriel to watch as the fabric of Hyperspace rushed towards them and passed them as the TNSS Dominax proceeded with the mop-up operation the Commonwealth had started.
On Gravius's massive prototype flagship, "Castigator", the Supreme Admiral experienced an emotion he hadn't felt for centuries - fear. Whenever he tried to come out with a way out of the uncertainty that clouded his mind, he fell into a pit of uncertainty and denial.However, no matter how far he ran away from the truth or tried to rationalize, the facts remained - he was cut off. He was the first one to hear of Invictus's fall. However, he was too far away to react, and the Draconis reaction had been so devastating and so quick that he couldn't have made a difference. He did not think that the Draconis, though capable, would wipe an entire world off the face of the Andromeda Galaxy.Invictus and Angrus were not captured or invaded, they were forever gone, meaning that his exhausted juggernaut of an army would receive no more reinforcements. It appeared the the other Dominatus admirals who had experience in the Unification Wars or the initial expansion of the Tyranny recognized the direness of the situation, the other ones never having been exposed to the concept of anything else other than pure victory. The calm and composed demeanor that marked the Dominatus was replaced by panic and confusion. He knew now that the situation was untenable - for all of their operational and tactical superiority, the Dominatus had already lost strategically in Andromeda. With the lives of his crew in his hands, he hailed Medusa.
Gravius - My lady, as you know, Invictus has been snuffed out.
Medusa - Yes ... I know, the Worm-King has taken life from the one nearest to me and taken away my Andromedan palace.
Gravius - Yes, I offer my condolences for the Archon's loss, however, I humbly request that we conclude the Andromedan campaign.
Gravius - My experience the Wars of Unification and the Tyranny's expansion tell me that the situation is untenable. We have lost and should recuperate in -
Medusa - I will not have this insolence! When did such a defeatist spirit overwhelm you.
Gravius - My Tyrant, while on this front we consistently win the battles, we have lost the -
Medusa - Impudent worm, you are no better a warrior than the foes you face now!
Medusa - I give you the ships and weapons to do my bidding and you fail like this?
Gravius - The ships are useless without supplies! The ships are too high maintenance and often fail.
Medusa - See to it that you conclude your campaign at Araveene, the final objective. Any step back will result in the liquidation of you, and those close to you.
With that the comms ended and Gravius set forth to communicating his final orders to the other Dominatus. Shortly after Medusa had finished her conversation with Gravius, the comm system flashed again - someone was contacting her and although the communication was being masked by the source, it was coming from Andromeda. Hesitant at first, Medusa made sure to encrypt the link and accepted the comms request. An image materialised of a grand throne of gold and platinum, sitting squarely within it was a Draconis she knew all too well, clad in his armour of white and amber gold, dancing patterns covering every surface and marking his eye was an elaborate scar, from the detail it had been recently carved. The figure she knew frighteningly well sat with legs open, hands clamped on the armrests and a commanding scowl across his brow.
Medusa - You, murderer! Why do you ask for my presence. Are you ready to surrender?
The scowl became a smile, and then a confident, audiable laugh. that echoed between the two places.
Uriel - Only a madman of the grandest proportions concedes when he is winning.
Medusa - The fleet of the Tyranny is still in Andromeda, racing towards its goal and sweeping all before it!
Medusa - It is you who are mad!
Medusa - Do you think that the mere fall of one world will signal our demise?
Uriel - It depends. But I have done more than annihilate your greatest general and the planet he commanded in a single stroke.
Medusa - Cease speaking in riddles and unveil your twisted perversions of the truth
Uriel lifted his hand and made a gesture, walking in from the side was a Blood Dragon who presented an impossibly intricately decorated sword, large enough to function as a greatsword by the Draconis, but the design itself indicated it was more of a sabre.
Uriel - Do you know the owner of this blade, my lady?
Medusa then knew that the digital signal that Hedon had gone out was not an error.
Medusa - Rascal, you killed the progenitor of the Draconis that the Tyranny had so generously brought into it's fold
Uriel - A twisted and depraved one at that, but take comfort in that I was not ocmpletely untouched before his demise.
Medusa - Be honored that he imparted you a gift for your mishandling of one the Tyranny has so lovingly nurtured and cultured.
Uriel pointed at the scar that curled around his right eye, shaped by claw into something symbolic.
Medusa - Hmph, what could you have possibly done to have earned such a high sigil?
Uriel - I am no expert on your culture and I would be honoured if you could impart the symbolism this sigil represents.
Medusa - It is the symbol of the ideals of the Tyranny. It is our tenets and principles given birth in this realm.
Medusa - It is the abstract consciousness of the Tyranny given physical form.
Uriel - Those with the mark...are Dominatus?
Medusa - It is given to each Dominatus once they finish their education. Even the overseers are only given the incomplete version of it.
Uriel stared at Medusa for a few moments as he slouched forward in thought, closing hie eyes and letting out a sigh before he sat up again.
Medusa - How you possessed him to etch such a symbol upon your twisted flesh escapes even my mind.
Uriel - Your progenitor had apparently been listening to your consort.
Medusa *fuming with anger and indignation* - WHAT?!
Uriel - You do not believe me?
Medusa - Why would I believe the toxic filth which emanates from your mouth?
Uriel tapped a holographic console and his image was replaced with a security recording, Hedon bleeding on the floor with Uriel standing over him, Hedon announced everything he had done in his dying moments. Disbelief strangled the Tyrant as she tried to say something that would give her dominance in the conversation. Alas there did not exist a tongue so talented as to achieve that feat.
Medusa - Impossible.
Medusa - Lies.
Medusa - He was the one I chose.
Uriel - I do not believe I could be like your kind myself, Lady Medusa. Somehow, Angrus saw it.
Medusa *screaming* - YOU ARE NOT DOMINATUS! YOU DO NOT SHARE MY BLOOD!
Medusa completely lost her cool, giving off a screech that reverberated throughout the palace.
Uriel - I will offer you a mercy; I will agree to spare those of your species, yourself included, so long as you agree to surrender when your palace is surrpunded. If not, then Invictus is but a demonstration.
Medusa looked around the palace room, noting the statues of her and the Tyranny's glory, but most importantly, the edifice of her father.
Medusa - I will not bow down to you worm-king! On my pride as a Dominatus and my bond to my father, I fully reject your offer. Talk now, for it is you will be begging as soon as Gravius is done with his work.
Medusa - I would not have my father's work completely undone by the utterance of a single word.
Uriel - Your confidence is admirable, Lady Medusa. But if you would prefer a warrior's death then so be it, for this was your choice.
Medusa - The next time we meet, one of us will be in chains beneath the other. We know who that one is.
Uriel - Remember that the fleet you send after me has no supplies, no reinforcements and can receive no respite.
Uriel - But what you have done is your choice, farewell my lady, we shall see how fate plays out.
Medusa, in denial, could only turn to the learnings she had in her education.
Medusa - The Tyranny Will Conquer!
Medusa - Take pride in your temporary victory Uriel, it will be your last!
Uriel smirked and disabled the connection, leaving Medusa alone in the room.
Gravius looked at what remained of his once mighty fleet - while they had not suffered very significant losses in ships, for the most part they were emasculated as a fighting force. Only a small fraction of the force, the fleet immediately around Gravius was able to mount operations, and even then, it was just one last jump. They weren't even able to navigate star systems, only hyperspace, due to their lack of fuel for the non-hyperdrive engines. Gravius knew that the only way to possibly complete his objective of conquering Araveene was to use the Draconis hyperlanes and hope that they landed directly over Araveene. However, through centuries of military experience, he knew that only a miracle of miracles would ensure that there was a semblance of success in this operation. He looked at those before him and knew that he had in his hands the lives of an unprecedented amount of Dominatus, mostly in the contingents which were unsupplied. His only hope was to hold Araveene hostage and ask for a ceasefire which would allow the Dominatus to return to Mirus. However, recent events told him that miracles didn't happen, only cataclysms. He knew that while he would win in a pitched battle, especially with his monstrous flagship, that the war was pretty much lost.
Gravius - Fellow Dominatus, I come to speak to you now not as your Supreme Admiral, but as a fellow Dominatus. Some of you have known me and the Tyranny ever since the Wars of Unification, more of you are familiar with our expansion through the Acheron Region. Some of you have only know the Tyranny as a power not bound by the gravity of a planet. Others among you know us as a power which has always had more than a galaxy. Many of you have been here ever since the Drakodominatus-Fraege War, others in our wars of conquest, others in the War of Hyperspace. You know the predicament we face now. The fate of the Tyranny is to be decided by all of us in this single battle, we are at the crossroads of our nation's history, where we either see the Tyranny soar into the heavens or fall into the crevasse of ruin. You have already done more than I had expected at the start of this campaign, with far less than should have been given to you at the start, and for that I am proud. But my pride does not guarantee the wellbeing of the Tyranny and today I ask just one last effort, one of the conquest of Araveene. The enemy may think he has won just because he has temporarily conquered Invictus, but you know that the Dominatus have superiority or the martial plain! You know that our skill and power will guarantee us a victory as it has in situations like this in the past. Our encounters with him have been victories thus far, we have carved a bloody swath into his territory and now there is but one last obstacle in our way. I ask you, not just for our dreams of territory, but on your pride as Dominatus, for Abaddon, for Demogorgon Prime, for every Dominatus living, dead and unborn to pool your efforts in one last battle. That is all I ask of you, and the last I will ask. On the strength of our arms, the power of our ships and the glory of the Tyranny, to Araveene.
With that, with his remaining ships yet capable of hyperspace, led by his utterly massive flagship "Castigator", they set sail for Araveene. Nearing the outskirts of the system, the fleet was about tolet loose on the unsuspecting planet. However, their eagerness was interrupted when a sudden gravity well had to force their ships out of hyperspace, left to sit in the void, orbiting the distant star. Gravius was distraught, as the planet was on the outskirts of sensor range and completely out of weapons range. Furthermore, his shields were depleted as the energy needed for the hyperspace jump drained them.His ships were also out of fuel, and could do naught but wait. He could not even bring himself to speak to the Dominatus to inspire them. Even in the protective embrace of his ship Castigator, at 666km long, the largest non-Tiamat warship yet produced by the Tyranny, Gravius could not shrug off the feeling of his mortality. As the ships approached the clouds of ice and dust that surrounded the system's edge, after several hours of drifting, new signals emerged, lurking in the ice.
The signals were hot ,they were large ,and they were slowly approaching. Gravius tallied his fleets's supplies and knew that it did not have enough for a complete engagement.
Gravius - Prepare for imminent battle!
The shapes came closer into range, with little aiming, hyperlaser volleys screamed though the void towards the fleet, some of them impacting the smaller ships. The ships affected, without their shields, could only rely on their armor as the tried to angle their guns against the Draconis with what little power they still had left. Gravius ordered the ships to fire back at the Draconis ships as the ships which had them in their gun's trajectories retaliated with brutal volleys. Some shots strayed from full-body hits, aiming for the engines of the Tyranny's vessels. The engines, relatively unprotected and fragile parts, were easily wrecked and destroyed as the scintillating Draconis volleys created massive explosions that completely immobilized the Dominatus ships. While the ships still had other power plants powering them, they were literally sitting ducks with their back compartments exposed.
Gravius recognized the direness of the situation. There was no retreat, no surrender, no miracle to come, no reinforcements. Soaring though like spacebound dogs let off the leash, smaller warships began firing volleys, although the shots from them were considerably weaker, they ere far more numerous. Some of these shots hit the posterior of the Dominatus ships, unarmored and exposed due to the destruction of the engines. The powerful armor they had did no good as the ships, from cruisers to dreadnaughts were consumed. With the escort crippled, the Draconid fleet turned its attention to the Castigator, the hound-ships firing away as their trajectories brought them gradually closer. Castigator, the first of the Overlord Class Dominator line of Dominatus ships intended for interuniversal conquest absorbed the blows with its outside layer of prototype Quarkonnium armor. However, it could only lunge at seperate ships, its massive armaments not well suited to taking down hordes of craft. Gravius cursed at what he knew to be his ignominious end. While he was not dead yet, he could not hope to win or even stalemate.
Gravius heard reports all over Andromeda of unsupplied and straved Dominatus fleets being cut off, crippled and destroyed. The fire outside reminded him that such a fate would come to him sooner rather than later. As the warships continued to bite at the Castigator's armour there was another signature. Much, much larger than any before it, delivering the energy signature of an entire star within its frame.
Gravius - Hmph ... Larnus.
Gravius saw that all of his weapons were out of energy. Furthermore, his prototype quarkonium armor and shielding were useless without energy. He only knew that there was one reserved energy storage which could only be used for the ship's main bow-weapon.
Gravius - Prepare the Oblivion Projector.
Grand Admiral 1 - Gravius, are you sure, we will perish, we don't have the power for guidance.
Gravius - We are but dead men walking.
Gravius - Let us be remembered by the Tyranny as men who went down with a fight.
With that, a massive anomalous discontinuity in spacetime began forming at the monster's prow. Readings showed that a displaced pocket universe was being formed by the Castigator. The Dominax, the warship of the Lord-Admiral and pride of the Imperial Talon navy charged up its main gun, firing a charge though hyperspace which materialised inside the Castigator, detonating once it passed though the aperture.
The fusion of the power of a star and the creation of a pocket universe primed for immediate destruction created a cataclysmic reaction. The mathematics behind the design of the weapon as well the laws of the universe did not have a provision for such an event, though Gravius knew what was to follow. The power of a star and the displaced pocket universe momentarily stopped spacetime in the Castigator and allowed Gravius to fully come to terms with what had transpired.
Gravius - The golden apple tree with its roots soaked deep in blood.
Gravius - I have failed, forgive me.
Gravius - Ferra -.
Before he could complete his wife's name, the apocalyptic reaction between the two superweapons occurred.
Larnus watched and was suddenly alarmed by the unstable reaction.
Larnus - Crew...Raise shields and retreat to a safe distance, inform all in-system colonies to charge planetary shielding up to full power, now!!
A helmsman nodded and sent out the signal before the fleet began to flee from the cataclysm unfolding.
For the first time, the prototype weaponry of the Tyranny did what it was supposed to. The density parameter of the created pocket universe worked as it should and asymptomatically approached absolute infinity. This meant that the volume of the pocket universe expanded to infinity as well - The Big Bang. Then, a single planck instant later, it all coalesced into a cosmically destructive event centered in the ship akin to a Big Crunch. The resulting destruction completely destroyed all matter in a radius that extended from just beyond the Araveene system's outermost rim to the prow of the once proud flagship. The resulting gamma ray burst then flashed for a much longer distance, only just warded off by Araveene's planetary shield. The Dominatus fleet and it's brightest naval mind had been erased from existence.
Larnus looked at the blast and lowered his head in relief.
Larnus - Calculate the trajectory of that GRB and inform all colonies on its path of the incoming danger. On the positive, we scored an immense victory this day.