Karthos, IVth Legion Terminator, tossed aside his combi-bolter as the ammunition racks clacked, their rounds depleted. Stepping over the still fresh corpses of xenos dead, Karthos wrenched off his helmet, letting the acrid tang of the battlefield’s many scents play across his senses - the fyceline stink of bolter propellant, the earthen musk of the rain-sodden mud beneath his boots, and the rich coppery tang of fresh blood - of that, there was no shortage. Advancing with the tectonic gait of his Cataphractii-class plate, the veteran Terminator noticed several of his fellow Legionaries in the next trench - a Tactical squad by the looks of it. Dropping into the trench with neither grace nor subtlety, Karthos assessed the squad through his occulobe implants, data-feeds and legionary idents glowing faintly upon his iris.
“Belkor. Situation update.”
The tactical Sergeant didn’t question him, appraising the situation with admirable bluntness.
“Xenos defensive annex up on the ridge. Spiny little bastard. Artillery support’s occupied and the shrapnel bolts aren’t suppressing it. Orders?”
Karthos took in the squad’s appearance – drenched in mud, armour cratered with weapon impacts. Not a single anti-emplacement weapon amongst them outside of the Sergeant’s siege hammer, yet they’d got this far anyway. The Terminator’s respirator unit masked his smile – now these were troops whose stubbornness he could use.
“Tactical advance. I’m going to take that thing’s fire and you’re going to kill it once we’re close enough. They won’t be prepared for me, I wager.”
Belkor nodded. “And if it does manage to kill you?”
Karthos’ smile turned to a humourless grin as he re-donned his helmet, jerking a thumb towards the squad’s Apothecary – Tacitus, by his rune-ident.
“Then you bloody well make sure he recovers our gene-seed.”