Inquisitor Eschriel Inquisitor Fahren Psyker Acolyte Irdenham Sister Hospitalier Venschena
‘Sergeant Reis, pull the trigger.’ I can hear that phrase over and over in my head, coming from the mouth of Inquisitor Eschriel, putting a name to your unflinching face, to your cold eyes. For decades I thought you dead, imagined you as a broken corpse, rotting away in the mud of a distant world, your bones being bleached beneath the light of an alien sun. And yet… and yet I couldn’t cross your name off my list. Some part of me knew you were still drawing breath, polluting some world with the miasma of your being. The very thought hounded me like an enraged mastiff, kept me awake at night, kept me on edge, kept the flame of fury burning within me… but it won’t be long now. I will find my peace, and you will meet your justice.
A stray Militarum communique, snatched from the Warp by my Astropath, was all I needed to have my suspicions confirmed, to catch onto your scent once more. You are alive, your cowardice was rewarded with an extension of your life, your blind obedience was awarded with an apartment in Hive Persepolis. I am on your trail now. Every time I close my eyes I see your face, contorted in pain. I can hear your voice, begging for mercy with your last breath. I can almost feel your blood on my hands already.
The PDF lets my ship pass undisturbed. To them I am just another trader, bearing rare goods for the nobility. I stalk through the winding streets of your Hive. I find you; I see you; you exist in ignorant bliss. I see you and I remember her. Locked in that tiny black room, chains digging into her flesh, seals burned into her skin.
You go about your days, you eat, you drink, you laugh… I hear your laughter and I remember her cries. Glowing hot iron pushed against her body, stamping the emblem of the Inquisition upon her chest as she screams. Oh Emperor, she screams so loud. My blood boils and my hands curl into fists. It takes everything I have not to pounce on you here and now, but I must wait. I grab a bottle of Amasec, and I squeeze until the glass shatters, then I squeeze some more, until I draw blood, until the shards bury themselves into my palms. Anything to distract myself for a little more.
I follow you, I hide in the shadows, in the vapours emerging from the underhive. You return home, high up on the hab-block. I hide as you open the door and embrace your little girl. Her image flashes before me again. Holy Parchment stitched onto her face, blood trickling from the sutures. Blood and tears mixed together. She is so young… she doesn’t know what is happening to her. All she knows is pain and fear, and the impenetrable black. I don’t sleep that night. I wait for dawn to come once again; I wait for you to leave the apartment.
I see you leave for the day and my mouth fills with saliva. I am a predator with my haunches coiled. I can already taste blood, and it drives me crazy. My mind almost blanks, images of her, images of you, images of all the others: Eschriel, Fahren, Irdenham, Venschena, everyone that was in that room with her. It all blends together into one, and the tension is reaching a fever pitch. I swallow and regain control; my next moves need to be careful, precise.
I am in your house. All I had to do was show my fake Arbites badge to your wife, and she let me right in. I am waiting for you. We are all waiting for you. We’ve spent hours together, and every time I look at your daughter, I see her. I see her kicking and crying as Inquisitor Fahren pulls her away, to the Black Ship that waits for her in orbit. I hear the door open, and I know this will end soon.
My laspistol is trained at your wife’s temple and I toss you a pair of handcuffs. You love her, so you put them on. You are wishing this is all a nightmare, that you will wake up. That’s what I once wished too. I know better now. I know the nightmare never ends.
I remind you of what happened all those years ago. I tell you of the Black Ship. I tell you how a servo-skull recording of her time there ended up in my hands. I tell you how you held me back when I attempted to run after her. I was so little back then, and you were so big, all I could do was cry and thrash against your gloved arms as they took her away.
Now you cry too. You are on your knees, and you beg, your eyes bloodshot from all the tears.
She begged you every time you entered that tiny black room. She begged you to release her. She begged you to tell her what she did wrong. On the day that psyker, Irdenham, pronounced her ‘untrainable’. She begged you not to pull the trigger.
Now I pull the trigger too.
Your daughter’s body goes limp, and her smouldering skull hits the floor, brains and blood pouring out. Like hers did.
Screams from all around. I pull the trigger again, and your wife joins your daughter.
You just sit there. No screams now, nothing. Just shock as your world shatters around you. I decide to grant you a final mercy, and I pull the trigger a third time.
Now I am alone. I loosen my grip and my pistol drops with a thud. I reach for the pendant I’ve carried for so long around my neck. It feels lighter now. I open it. ‘It’s done, sister.’
About the Author
Angelos is a 25 year old hobbyist writer from Greece who got into WH40K a bit more than is advisable, and has now fallen in love with the lore.