One after another they came walking onto the marketplace. But they didn’t seem to be in any hurry. At first they were two then three and then it seemed like a Group of at least a dozen. Some of the roamed like a love drunken youngster after his first kiss. Not like they where at war. The wailing of the Feldwebel was gone. He seemed to have beard up against his pain and tried to press his tight with his bare hands to stop the bleeding. That seemed to displease the advancing squad of xenos. One of them, wearing an armor decorated with an absurd amount of spikes, raised some kind of pistol and fired another shard at the lying Feldwebel. It embedded itself in his right arm and he spasmd in pain. Unable to stop the bleeding of any of his wounds. Frankly that didn’t seem to satisfy the pistol wearer. He fired another shard at the Feldwebel’s head, and ended his life immediately. The pistol wearer then seemed to say, or vox something to his group and the hidden gun crew thought to hear laughter. A cruel and bitter xenos laughter.
Wesselsky had seen his share of brutality in his soldier’s life. He was young, only twenty-one standard years old, but has seen in his three years of service enough brutality from men against men. But these xenos were something completely different. They were way beyond cruelty. For them it seemed like a thing you even don’t think about. Like swatting a krikfly with your hand. With even no need to see if the insect has died by the strike or simply has been scared away.
Every part of Wesselsky’s life and upbringing urged him to kill these abominations. These were xenos, the enemies of mankind and its unquestioned rule of the galaxy. And if not that, they have killed one of his own this very moment like he was some stray dog. The Schütze hold the trigger string of the lascannon. But he had to wait. They haven’t come here by foot. There must be some transport, or emperor helps some kind of a tank. He hoped that the screams and the shouting had at least woken the Grenadier Trupp in the Schulz’s mansion. When the Trupp took control of the building they found the wine cellar barely touched. How their discipline has hold since then Wesselsky doesn’t know, but he couldn’t shake of the thoughts that the whole squad was lying and snorting in that building. Completely drunk after two days of feasting. With his anti tank cannon he had no chance against these killers.
The xenos group was advancing to the mansion. The marktplatz was still occupied by several empty wooden booths. And the enemy troopers did seem to be always in the near of one or another kind of cover, how swaggering their kind to walk looked. But the mansion had their attention as the emergency vox beacon was positioned under the roof of the building. From the outside, the mansion looked like it has two days ago. No sign of activity, fortification or anything else. This changed in an instant. Perfectly executed, the fire ambush sprung. Ten laser shots punched out of the windows of the building in unison. Two enemy soldiers went to the ground immediately. As their limbs lay they wouldn’t stand up on this side of the warp again. Three other xenos took also laser hits but their armor seems to shrug of the deadly effects. In a blink of an eye the surviving xenos where in cover and returning fire. Both sides tried to take potshots at the others but it was a stalemate. This seemed to change as on of the windows on the right side of the building was smashed open from the inside. The Grenadier Trupp brought their heavy stubber to bear. The belt feed machine gun began a second later to spit bullets towards the xenos. The Emperors-saw as it was named by the common soldiers was already hammering the xenos into defense and began to shred away several wooden covers like barrels and overturn market tables.
Still no one seemed to have taken notice of the covered anti tank team. The xenos where to occupied with the fight at their hands and Loader Ditter spoke his thoughts,
‘Let’s kill that scum and give them what they deserve.’
Wesselsky was spared an explanation as the firing position of the heavy stubber and a good part of the building on the left side erupted in an explosion of purple fire. His eyes could have been played a trick, but he thought he saw the upper half of a human body spit out of the mansions window. The transporter has arrived and taken its side in the firefight. It looked like a boat, more at home on some kind of peaceful river than the battlefield. Except that it was flying, painted in different shades of black and bustling with even more spikes and a big energy gun at its bow.
Wesselsky waited for that moment, but now as it was there he didn’t quite like it. The xenos transport was at the left side of their position, completely out of their guns fire arc. They had expected the enemy to attack from the north. Exactly where the xenos troopers where attacking, as this was the quickest way to their presumed base of operation. Their transport must have flanked the small city and attacked form the southwest, or they just decided to appear from thin air. So it will all been decided by one good shot, if we get out one at all the Schütze thought. He turned to the Loader Ditter who was shaking heavily again.
‘Listen boy, you know the drill. You grab the right stabilizer and I the left. Then we turn 90 degrees to the left. Klar!?’
Ditter waited a full second before answering and said then weakly,
Wesselsky grabbed with his left hand the wrist of the left stabilizer rail which went on the backside of the gun to hold the gun into position after each shot. As it was an energy based weapon it has usually no recoil. But this was a gun made on Baran. Produced in the machine cult sanctified factories of Kellersitz Primus they where made with the materials available. That meant inferior materials, thus a substandard focusing lens was used. Through the open focusing camber the very air in front was ignited by the firing laser beam. Resulting in some heavy recoil based on temperature and air moisture. And at this rainy weather it would kick out like a heavy grox bull.
Wesselsky risked a last view through the lens and the scene wasn’t a promising one. With the help of the transport the enemy had the Grenadiers in the house pinned and the transporter cleared on window after another with its bow mounted gun. Ditter grabbed the right stabilizing rail and hold with the other the cannons heavy battery.
Wesselsky began to count,
‘1, 2, 3 Go!’
To lift the two backside rails was difficult enough. The rain had made the earth soggy and it was more mud than earth else. They began to turn the gun to the left and began to sweat at that very moment. The wet ground smacked as they tried to move the tires of the gun carriage. They turned half the way when the barrel of the gun was caught in one of the bushes branches. They coughed and had almost dropped the gun but managed to hold on. The branch though was still there and preventing them from moving it further to the left.
’Fifteen centimeters back!’ Wesselsky ordered.
They pulled the gun back and then turned it further, but they were discovered already.
to be continued…