Canon worlds: An exerpt.
Hot smoke and ash blew downwind, the smell of charred flesh and burning forest rife in the air blocked Connor’s thoughts as much as it did his vision. Billowing clouds of smoke covered the woods in a thick veil of grey, and he worried if making a left turn would make him easy pickings for the field archers.
They were losing both this battle at the Black Waters they called home, along with the war against the Imperium; this much, he knew the morning Taylor could no longer look him in the eyes.
“Call the surrender,” Rosa’s voice begged under hushed tones, but every syllable grated at his heart as did his ears. “They will be merciful, brother, I swear it! Please, let no more blood be shed over a hopeless cause!”
Just so that worried voice tugged at his conscience no longer, he wished to stick his halberd right through her own gut; he choked at the thought of how she’d sound with blood in her throat, but what ripped Connor was the thought that he could no longer find any familiarity or trust in that voice.
“Merciful?” He almost laughed. “They will flay us alive, harvest our bones for weapons and use our blood for their magic. This is mercy, Rosa, this is the only fucking benevolence our kind will ever have!”
Haia would rather die fighting, even if it meant to gnash her fangs while an Imperialist tore at the flesh of her thick, muscular arms.
Better they quickly rip the vocal cords from Soreha’s throat, than have their time with the Caggra.
Taylor will remember their sacrifice, and batter the rest of their forces on stone walls.
A part of him knew Rosa had already forgotten how their mother screamed as Skinner parted the flesh of her forearm with a red-hot knife; God was kind enough to Connor for letting him hear that scream in his dreams. God help his sister; she would once nod and wear the pride of a half-breed on her heart. Though both their irises shone brilliant pink, like any of the Blackwater halflings, he could only see bewilderment in her eyes.
“What’s the difference between this hopeless mission and a mindless sacrifice? Brother, please”–
There was a weight in his heart, though it was one he had readily accepted; his sister’s soul was clearly dyed in the Empire’s white colours. He’d always feared this to happen the day she left to spy on the Emperor’s reign, though now he only felt disappointment.
“I curse you, stranger.” Connor hissed, turning his back. He saw the hills burn from the high cliff they perched on. Now was no time to barter with emotion. “Leave, and I hope you die like the animal you are– hrrk!”
As soon as he turned his back, something sharp lodged itself into the gaps of his armour, and into the lungs; a favourite technique of Rosa’s.
“Why?” he choked, feeling blood well up in his throat.
“Because for all your strength, you couldn’t do what was necessary.”
He felt a gentle push, and the world around him tumbled. The last Connor saw of the world was smoke and fire, then nothing else.