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by NoPoet

[20K] The Man from Nowhere (2015 re-write)

10/09/2015 in 20K, Warhammer 40K

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This is the tale of the XMS Southern Cross, a pioneer ship of the Terran Navy. Captain Jacob Darnall and his crew had guided their Canyon-class cruiser through the perils of Solar Segment, besting pirates and alien raiders in fraught combat, exploring unknown anomalies in space and ensuring the survival of the fledgling Terran Empire.

The Southern Cross was nearing the end of a two-year tour of duty. Its crew were already looking forward to their return to Sol for refit, resupply and well-earned shore leave, when Master of Vox Lieutenant Lim detected a distress call. The communications specialist alerted her captain, and the Southern Cross moved to investigate.

The incident is provided in spoken form, reconstructed from recordings in the ship’s log and certain on-board sensor footage. What conclusions you draw from this information is your business; though you will surely experience some of the trepidation our brave Navy crews must feel as they venture out into the haunted darkness of space.

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by NoPoet

[20K] Revised 20K Timeline (updated April 2013)

17/03/2013 in 20K, Imp Lit News

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20K is the unofficial Warhammer 40,000 prequel series which I have been working on for a number of years. There are two “phases” to 20K and three “series” of stories.

PHASE ONE
The early stages of 20K, where humanity is emerging from its safe bases in Solar Segment and beginning to explore the galaxy, hoping to make contact with the fabled One Hundred Worlds. Human technology is limited and humanity begins to learn that alien races are generally hostile and untrustworthy.

PHASE TWO
A more confident and technically proficient

The following is a rough timeline including every 20K story that I am writing or plan to write. I have tried to remove as many spoilers as possible. Note that the timeline is subject to change and is undergoing constant revision.
This is “phase one” of 20K, a desperate time of derring-do. Phase 2, if I ever get that far, has a more mature and more adventurous tone with less of the grimness and grittiness of some of the earlier stories. Look for the crossovers and in-jokes as they appear. Fans of 40K as well as fans of general science fiction should find lots to be happy about.
Please ignore any repetitions or minor mistakes, this is the beta version and I already have the events right in my mind.
20K PHASE 1
40K’s mysterious and exciting history finally comes to life in tales of terror and adventure. Join the brave human pioneers of the Terran Empire as they begin their expansion into a galaxy where anything is possible.
KEY:
FRL = Fearless series
EW = Earthwatch series
SOL = Solstice series
Stories which do not have a series designation are independent stories (in TV parlance they would be “bottle shows”)
NOTE: Significant information is (deliberately) missing from the following timeline! Dates and events are subject to change.
===
20K Date Timeline
Pre-M21
Date Unknown – The Eldar race has become factionalised by hedonism and decadence. Illegal fighting contests and worship of the proscribed god Khaine slowly overtake the fabled city-state of Commoranth, the City of Souls.
Date Unknown – A Chinasian colony receives human visitors who claim to be from the future. These visitors, mighty warriors who say their home planet was destroyed in a cataclysmic war, lend their efforts to the colony’s Human Genhancement Project – with horrific results. (“Faithless”)-[NOTE: This story is currently in progress as of August 2013]
M21
975.M21 – Starships of the Alneran Republic, a hostile alien species whose territory lies within Solar Segment, encounter a mysterious alien being and take him prisoner. The strange hostage escapes when a Terran Navy ship attacks the Alnerans; the being will later turn up in Terran space, where his strange behaviour confounds his human rescuers. (“The Man Without A Past”)-[NOTE: This story is currently in progress as of March 2013]
978.M21 – XMS Southern Cross encounters R’Shan, a member of an unidentified alien species who has been conducting unknown warp experiments within Terran space. (“The Man From Nowhere”)
978.M21 – The Fireblade prototype fighter begins its initial tests, intended to replace the Saxon class fighter. While on combat manoeuvres, a squadron of Fireblades falls foul of a renegade Eldar space fighter. (“Flight of the Fireblade”)
985.M21 – The Centaur class light cruiser is commissioned, intended as a gradual replacement for the legendary Canyon class.
985.M21 – The Terran Empire discovers the first known Warp Gate within Solar Segment.
986.M21 – XMS Ontario and XMS Lexington are sent to investigate the Warp Gate. During the mission, a previously unknown problem with the Ontario’s Gellar Shield hurls the ship into a time-travelling, galaxy-spanning adventure, during which humanity makes first contact with followers of the daemon god Nurgle. (“Ghostwalkers”) [NOTE: This story is currently being revised as of March 2013]
986.M21 – An expedition team of the Pan-Pacific Treaty, a coalition of coporations and nation-states who wish to remain independent of the Terran Empire, discovers a world belonging to the long-vanished Chinasian Bloc. The world has long been abandoned, but the expedition discovers disturbing evidence that the colonists had been conducting genetic experiments influenced by men who claimed to have travelled from the distant future – a time of terrible civil war. (“Legacy of the Future”)
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Dreaming in Ceramite

10/06/2012 in Warhammer 40K

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Countless gas lanterns high in the rockrete and plasteel rafters flickered lazily and heavy incense burners thumped into life as they gave out thick plumes of rich smoke into the hall of bay 13. The great bell thundered in its wooden housing deep within the ships cavity to mark the passing of six standard solar months. The metallic clang rolled around the massive chamber causing imperceptible stirring amongst the ancient occupants.

In the silence that marked the bell’s passing, static crackled and expanding metal ticked. Great constructs of machine fused with ancient men on the fringe of a great abyss bobbed gently as they fell once more into sleep. Save for one.

Battle Brother Drusillus strode through the bay, his black carapace gleaming as it caught the occasional light of the lanterns he passed. His bare feet patted on the cold floor as he passed acres of ordnance lying dormant: belts of bolter rounds stacked high were carefully inscribed with the blessings of ignition, flight and penetration, power vials trembled with dormant plasma, promethium canisters lay in tanks of viscous retardant and finally, behind a stasis shield reaching high into the dark, stood a venerable delivery system from millennia ago. Inside it, suspended, a strain of world eater virus slept.
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by NoPoet

[20K] Ghostwalkers

16/11/2009 in 20K

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“Mission log, XMS Ontario, triple-zero-double-oh-six, M20. We are approaching the hyper-gate and are preparing for translation. While our Mechanica contingent are excited about the upcoming journey, I can’t help but wonder whether the Ontario will make the translation intact. This is the first time a manned Navy ship will travel through the hyper-gate and there is no way to know for sure what will happen while we are under way.”

Captain Thorpe sat back in her chair, looking around the familiar space of her command cabin. These new cruisers were so cramped. She’d been pushing for her own ship and now she had finally received one – now the shipbuilding project was able to supply vessels for all Navy captains – she wished she’d been assigned one of the older types, perhaps the legendary Canyon class.

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by NoPoet

[20K] The Man From Nowhere

21/09/2009 in 20K

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This is the tale of the XMS Southern Cross, a pioneer ship of the Terran Navy. Captain Jacob Darnall and his crew had guided their Canyon-class cruiser through the perils of Solar Segment, besting pirates and alien raiders in fraught combat, exploring unknown anomalies in space and ensuring the survival of the fledgling Terran Empire.

The Southern Cross was nearing the end of a two-year tour of duty. Its crew were already looking forward to their return to Sol for refit, resupply and well-earned shore leave, when Master of Vox Lieutenant Lim detected a distress call. The communications specialist alerted her captain, and the Southern Cross moved to investigate.

The incident is provided in narrative form, reconstructed from recordings in the ship’s log and certain on-board sensor footage. What conclusions you draw from this information is your business; though you will surely experience some of the trepidation our brave Navy crews must feel as they venture out into the haunted darkness of space.

Read the rest of this entry →

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by Dae

It Happened at Three Islands

16/08/2009 in Warhammer 40K

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The rockets climbed towards the sky with a high-pitched whine, leaving behind them a trail of fire. They exploded high in the night, huge flowers of fire that lit up the darkness and the sea for a short instant, and one second later the sound came rolling over the sea, washing over the shore like a giant wave. Watching from the levee on the coast, with the water calmly swaying at the base of the rockrete, the crowd gasped in amazement as more flowers of gold, blue and green bloomed and wilted above their heads. Some children, startled by the noise, began to cry, hugging their parents tightly.

His broad shoulders looking slightly out of place in his civilian clothes, a man was sitting on one of the small flight of stairs that led down to the sea, one unopened bottle of amasec and two cups at his feet. Between two detonations, the sound of steps behind him made him look behind, and he smiled, waving at the tall and wiry man who was making his way towards him to come and sit next to him.

“Thought I’d find you here, Scy,” said the second man with a sincere smile as he sat down.

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by Dae

The General and the Lady

07/05/2009 in Warhammer 40K

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“General Holsworth? Someone here to see you.”

Lightning illuminated the large, wood-paneled room, and at the same time thunder drowned out Holsworth’s response. The guard shifted uneasily.

“Sir?”

“I asked you,” repeated Holsworth impatiently, “who it was, Wade.”

“She gave the name Lady De Vries, sir.”

Holsworth’s voice, when he answered, betrayed no emotion at all.

“Send her in.”

“Yes, Sir.”

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