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Before Then, There Were Shards;Part One
Posted By: dom1<moberly6@pacbell.net>
Date: 29 June 2005, 4:29 am

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      Two enormas forms, crusty, orange, and doubled over from age. One mass, a group of behemoths, orange to match but still quite young. Two movements, one is forward, the other indirect, meant for nothing but idleness. One sound, the rythmic hum, almost so deep it could have hurt. One place, a cavernous temple meant for many to visit but one power to inhabit.Hundreds of thoughts, shared by the many, fill the void with all the more plenty. One time, before the time, when the Covenant was but one mind.

      Hurik'Kwol, a Hunter by title, stood chanting among a deep sea of many like him. He was young, and impatient. This was noticeably apparent to his fellows, since his chanting was quicker, disorderly, and even less thought of. More than once he was sent notice by others discomfort with his mannerism by means of slender spines.

      His closest friend stood next to him, nudging him slightly to sent a deeper message. He tried his best to calm himself, but he was growing tired of watching the feeble Eldars ascend the altar.

      Order be spurned, he thought to himself, if the Eldars knew how tedious it is waiting for them, they'd move faster for certain. After what seemed like an eternity of waiting, he watched the Eldars turn away from their seats and sit down.

      The older of the two raised its arms, saying in a withered but strong voice, "This gathering is now in session, what you say here, goes before the God of All." As he lowered his arms, the ocean of giants sat down on the floor with their legs crossed.

      The second, younger, Eldar stood up and raised his arms. "The time has come for the news of the few to become the news of the many. We shall now know what troubles or aids our great people. Suddenly, his movements and voice quickened. He pointed at the closest Hunter near the altar.

      "You! What news have you to tell?"

      The Hunter stood without a moments delay, then stated in a loud tone, "The rain comes plentiful! Our crops multiply by the hundreds!"

      The mass gathered roared in unison, "Oo-rah!"

      The Eldar moved on. "You! What have you to speak of!"

      Again, without hesitation the next Hunter in line stood. "We have finally amassed enough funds to properly venthilate this temple!"

      The crowd once again cried out, "Oo-rah!" The first Eldar spoke up. "It is about time. It gets very stuffy in here." The crowd roared at once, "Yes! It does!"

      The younger Eldar moved to the next, and final. "You! What does our Military have to report!"

      A Hunter clad in beaten armor stood. His response was slow. "Our border units have encountered another alien race." The spines on the back of the Eldars and the armor clad Hunter bristled as a clamor arose from the others gathered there. The younger Eldar quelled it by raising his arms. When the murmurs died down, he motioned for the armored Hunter to continue.

      He reluctantly went on. "They are almost as large as us, but they are covered with fur. They are rash, and are mainly firebrands. They seek very little order." Again the murmurs arose, but went silent before the were forced to.

      The first Eldar spoke. "Have they made known their intentions?"

      "Yes. They say they were sent here by a higher group to absorb us into a greater conglamorate, a Holy Covenant. They have stated that if we do not join peacefully, they will force us."

       A din rose from the crowd. This time it did not go quiet until long after the younger Eldar raised its arms.

      When it finally did, the first Eldar spoke."It is strange that these beings from the same culture as those that visited us before would attempt to do the same but with harsher methods. I would have thought that these creatures would have had the same polietness as those before."

      The younger Eldar spoke. "You must remember that these creatures are different than those that we encountered before. These have pelts that can be collected. The others had honor to protect. Their blue scaly skinned movements did not lie."

      The legion there roared a challenge at the Eldars last comment. The first Eldar spoke again. "Ah yes indeed." He turned towards the armored Hunter. "What is our current, status, with these new beings?"

      "We are currently fighting three open engagements with our new enemy." The multitude roared again in challenge.

      "I see. Well then we will simply have to prepare for a more prolonged fight. Calvadore?"

      The armored Hunter bowed, then moved behind a brick podium on the side of the altar. He opened a scroll and held it out before him, then began reading off a list of names.

20 human years later.

      The bulky transport ship set down with a light thud. It sat unperturbed in its rest after travel for not but a few moments. The rear and side panels opened up to reaveal a war-torn district of the Covenant city of High Charity. Out of the hatches lumbered twenty large and armor clad figures.

      One of these went by the name of Hurik'Kwol, one of the first warriors to be selected to engage the new threat to his races freedom.

      He looked up at the smoke scarred and explosion dotted 'cieling' of the satellite city. The smell of fires and the sound of death reached him. He wondered how he was going to make it out of this one alive...