The heat of the sun pounded down and insects buzzed about the rotten helmets of Lord Syphalia’s crew. Sergeant Bluto, the imperial guardsmen captured recently, shuffled mindlessly along Consumption ahead of the four plague marines. His eyes had milked over and a thin streamer of blood flecked drool pooled from his mouth as he held the boltgun limply in his hands.
Blotches and bruises had appeared over the man’s body, and a stink had befallen him as his teeth began falling from his mouth. The embrace of Papa Nurgle had begun.
Black Ghonorea chuckled, spitting a gob of blackened pus from his mouth which sat exposed from its corroded helm.
“The new recruit seems to be getting on just fine Syphalia. He seems to have the grit that we need!” Ghonorea roared with laughter as he chucked a rock at the shambling guardsman. The rock bounced off the man’s skull, yet he did nothing and responded not a bit.
The four plague marines laughed harder.
“There be a lake according to my sensors ahead, and it appears to have signatures consistent with those ancient blocks that we found naught but a few days ago.” Syphalia said as he walked, checking a rusted hand scanner which showed location points and crude numbers indicating height and other environmental readouts.
“Lakes be good for pissin in.” The gunner Varitas said, gyrating his hips. As he did so, flecks of orangish scum fell from his armor and sizzled on the ground, killing anything that it touched.
Laringatius pointed ahead, where sunlight glimmered off of pristine water.
“Its sickening isn’t it? Up ahead. Lets get these relics and get out. I cant’ stand how clean it is here.” The marine said, hefting his plasma gun up.
Unknown to the plague marines, Mr. Salty and his eldar were moving through the jungle toward the site as well. The resulting firefight that ensued was short-lived, but epic.
Taking cover amidst the trees, the scenario had five total objectives. Four of them were on the ground, two of which close to the plague marines, and two of which close to Mr. Salty’s eldar. The remaining relic was high up in a tree.
This game would be won by either claiming three of the five relics and getting within 8″ of the table edge, or forcing the other side to bottle out. To add to the mix, monsters in the jungle could emerge and take out fighters as well.
The battle opened up with one of those monsters coming out of the jungle and engaging Mr. Salty himself. The exarch turned and fired at the creature, shredding it, but Salty could do nothing else that turn. The remaining eldar would move forward in an attempt to capture the two closest objectives to them.
The disadvantage for Mr. Salty would be to overcome the fact that the plague marines had them out ranged with their bolters and red-dots which aided the entire plague marine squad and gave them a +1 to hit.
Lord Syphalia ran forward to the tree while a pox walker moved into the lake to grab one of the easier objectives. On the other side of the table, Ghonorea and the guardsman Sgt Bluto moved to take the objective in the forest.
Veritas held his position in the rear with the plasma gun and prepared to go on overwatch. The eldar were also sending a trooper to climb the tree as well. It appeared to be a race to see who get to the top of the tree first!
Plague marine fire tore into the jungle, dropping one of Mr Salty’s men that was attempting to pick up one of the relics!
Syphalia climbs the tree, determined to win the day for Papa Nurgle while his men trade fire with the eldar below.
Mr Salty attempts to rally his men, who are falling to the plague marine fire. A shriveled head comes soaring out of the treeline as Syphalia drops a blight grenade from above, knocking the missile platform gunner and anther eldar warrior at the base of the tree with the gross contents of the explosion.
The plague marines are sweeping to the other side of the battlefield, attempting to get into line of sight to shoot at the eldar. The eldar warrior is almost to the top of the tree to claim the relic!
Off the side, the pox walker is attacked by a monster, holding him up for a turn before he can shamble into effective range and push the eldar back off the table.
Mr. Salty runs forward and picks up the relic that his downed warrior was attempting to hold. Looking up at Syphalia, the eldar commander unleashed hell with his weapons. Shurikens embedded themselves in Syphalia’s diseased flesh, doing no real damage by themselves, but causing the plague marine to lose his grip from the tree and fall to the ground.
The high impact hit would stun the diseased disciple of Nurgle, and in the following turn succumb to his injuries and be removed from the table.
Would it be enough? The eldar had taken heavy casualties up to this point.
Mr. Salty was alone with one of his remaining warriors, when the plague marines rounded the tree completely. Varitas capped the remaining eldar warrior with his plasma gun, and Mr. Salty voluntarily chose to bottle out, giving the battle to the plague marines.
Fortunately for the followers of Nurgle, Syphalia recovered from his injuries. The plague marine Ghonorea gained the ability to fire his bolter while running. The warband recruited yet another pox walker, Consumption, to their band, arming it with a bolter and red dot.
Resupplying saw the procurement of enhanced visors to the helms of the warriors, letting them hit their enemies in cover even better.
With their numbers swelling, Syphalia’s group pulls into a tie for first place with five total relics claimed. Their lack of power armor, however, was also growing. The plague marines themselves had gotten lucky and no one had been lost yet, but Syphalia knew he would have to soon tap into a relic to recruit another plague marine to his cause. Pox walkers would only go so far…