‘It is better to die for the Emperor than to live for yourself.’
The words came to my mind as I watched the foul horror butcher my men in this forsaken hellscape. I clung to that thought as I shouted orders and fired with futility at the winged monster. Its whole being screamed bloody murder. Its mere existence instilled an indescribable fear into the hearts of everyone who dared gaze upon it. We were dying here, I knew its axe would soon be at my throat, but we would stand until that moment came, as it was expected from us. Castille would stand against any foe until the last man or woman drew their final breath.
Then I saw her running towards me. No, not running, fleeing.
‘Are you seeing this Isaac?’ she said, a look of wonder in her eyes as we watched the planet from orbit.
We were gazing out of the ship as it moved away from the only place we’d known. She looked radiant and out of place in this cold place.
‘We have no time for sight-seeing Lara,’ I replied, trying to keep my own emotions in check. ‘Instructor Avelor is expecting us to learn everything we can about this vessel.’
‘It’s our first time out in the void.’
‘And we don’t want it to be our last,’ I said grimly. ‘Our marks have been below average as of late.’
‘We’ve been busy,’ she winked mischievously.
Our eyes locked as the grip on my Bolt Pistol hardened.
‘W-What do you mean you’re getting relocated?’ I stuttered.
‘I’m returning to Castille. I’ll be joining the garrison there as a Sergeant,’ she said while packing her entire life into one bag. Her room didn’t have much to pack anyway, none of us had anything more than a couple of books and data-slates. Still she had found a way for the place to look like a mess, nothing like the usual order she kept.
‘That can’t be, we’re bound to be more than this! To be Commissars!’ I said angrily. ‘To do more than just rot away in that backwater planet.’
‘You,’ she emphasized, her voice quivering a bit, ‘seem to be the one bound for more than that.’
‘I’ll talk to Avelor about this! They can’t just throw you away like this Lara,’ my anger flared even more, Emperor forbid I allowed this.
‘You won’t and they have, forget about it. I’m going home.’
I raised my gun and aimed at her, we both knew what my sworn duty was.
My heart skipped a beat upon reading the name. My Quarters on the Will of Lions seemed to freeze for a second, nothing mattered any more than this.
‘Sergeant Lara Amran,’ I muttered to myself.
‘Sir?’ replied Officer Smouls.
‘I need you to bring someone to me.’
My grip trembled. Her eyes couldn’t believe what they were seeing, and my hands couldn’t believe what I was doing.
The door opened as she came in.
‘You asked for me si…’ she stopped at once when she saw me.
We stood there, awe-struck for what seemed like an eternity. As always, I was the one that had the first tear rolling down his cheek. She was always the stronger one.
She looked different, but she also looked exactly the same. I could see new wrinkles on her face, but she had that same stare. Her hair had a little grey on it, but it still found a way to look so compelling. She then smiled with that same mischievous smile she always did.
There was no need for words, we were both smiling and sobbing now. This is where we were bound to be, back together, back in Castille.
In that split second, my mind was set. As always, I was the one that had the first tear rolling down his cheek.
I pulled the trigger.
About the Author
Eduardo Garcia is a software engineer from Venezuela, currently living in Buenos Aires. He’s been a big Warhammer fan for more than a decade now, finally getting into the hobby/tabletop a couple years ago.