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Space Hulk  – Double Time

Space Hulk – Double Time

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Project Blog by m3kman

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About the Project

I've always enjoyed Space Hulk and the little boxes of fiction that would be included in the rules and missions booklets so I thought I'd try my hand at some of my own.

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Space Hulk - Double Time - a short story.

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Double Time.

They were going to have to double time it.

They’d been on the back foot since their boarding torpedo guidance system had malfunctioned. An almost catastrophic insertion, delivered them a full Imperial kilometre away from the main beachhead. With all the alien lifeforms in the way they might as well have been a galaxy away.

But what seemed like a disaster as far as support went was really a blessing from the Emperor. Their malfunction had effectively allowed them to outflank their Tyranid adversaries and placed them close to the engine room. One of the mission targets.

Their path to the engine room was clear, two levels down and 2 kilometres of winding gantries and corridors away. But it wouldn’t stay that way for long. They needed to press on.

Sarge: Master Librarian, anything?

Beneath the Terminator helmet the  Cranius’ brow furrowed as he reached out with his mind Nothing… not yet anyway.

Cranius: Nothing brother Sergeant!

Sarge: Thank the Emperor! – We’re moving men – let’s go!

Falling into their predetermined positions they marched through the claustrophobic confines of the Space Hulk. Aptly named the Abomination of Desolation had an oppressive air about it, one that Sarge knew was wearing upon the Master Librarian.

Unopposed for just over a kilometre Sarge suddenly felt the weight of the Master Librarians Power fist on his shoulder.

Brother Sergeant, something’s coming.

Checking his HUD (Heads up Display) a fresh contact registered on the suits sensors. Relaying the info immediately to the rest of the squad.

Sarge: Let’s meet that blip halfway – Double time it!

Sarge highlighted a choke point about one third of the way between the squad and the blip.

Setting off at a sprint (for a normal man at least) the terminators lumbered through the Hulk till they came to the Sarge’s designated choke point. Spreading out, with multiple overwatch fields overlapping, nothing was going to get more than a glimpse of their impending doom. And if the Emperor smiled upon them today… not even that.

Scant seconds after they had taken position the single blip on their suits rounded the corner revealing three ‘stealers heading right for them. Their unnatural bounding gait as they leapt from wall to floor and back to wall again would have caused a normal man to turn and run.  Their chittering and screeching would have turned that run into a panicked sprint.  But Terminators were not normal men and hadn’t been, in some cases, for hundreds of years. Years of practise, experience, hypno conditioning, surgical and genetic enhancement made them supermen. Their armour made them the Tip of the Emperor’s mighty spear.  They ran from nothing.

Four Storm bolters rattled out a battle cry of death and destruction to all of their enemies and then it was done.

Brother Sergeant we are discovered – The master Librarian voxed matter of factly.

Sarge: I thought as much. These were only scouts, but there’ll be more – double time it to here.

Sarge highlighted the next rally point. A large room two levels above the engine room. Other blips appeared at the extreme range of his suit sensors.

Sarge: we’re going to have company in three minutes – let’s make the most of them.

Once more the squad moved off in the direction of their next objective.  Scanners at maximum. More blips appearing as the Hive mind registered their presence.

Still the squad thundered towards their rally point. No one complained, no one worried. If this was to be the day they joined the Emperor then it was the day. Dedicated, purposeful, and powerful. They had a duty to perform and it would be performed.

Brother Sergeant – The Librarian voxed – Let us change our marching order.

Sarge knew better than to argue with Cranius – if he had a crazy idea he would sooner follow that that one of the Empires finest strategists.

Sarge: From your lips to my ears Master Librarian.

At the next junction they switched.  It’s not easy manoeuvring a half ton of man and armour in the confines of the space hulks.

Sure enough as they turn the following corner they were met with they blips that had been coming their way. And right in the middle of them was a Carnifex. Not one of the big ones but one of the much smaller – though no less lethal – screamer killers.

MINE! – the Master Librarian whispered. He began the rites of hatred and followed them with the rites of power as he seemingly suicidally charged the mass of teeth and really huge talons.

The rest of the squad – except for Clavius – began picking off their targets. Clavius had the Heavy flamer and couldn’t fire without possibly killing us all. Aliens screeching and dying in tune to the thunderous melody of the storm bolters.

Sarge had seen Cranius fight before but never anything this big. He heard the whispered rites.  He felt more than saw the psychic hood crackle with its’ otherworldly energies and saw those same energies beginning to build on the fearsome force sword the Master librarian always had about his person.

The Screamer killer met the charge of this foolish little creature. It knew they normally did not behave this way and paused as if deciding what to do.  The Hivemind realising something was different about this creature blasted a command at the little carnifex and it’s top, man sized talons closed defensively to block the incoming force weapon.

Cranius’ force sword cut through one of the talons and it dropped to the floor with a clang. The other talon blocked the downward swing of the force weapon above the librarians head.  The carnifex’s lower scything talons opened and extended to welcome the errant human in a deadly embrace. Sensing victory it didn’t even hurry, it was playing with it’s food.  Cranius knew full well what was coming.

He reached deep within himself, to that place where the Emperor had touched his soul two hundred and eighty years previously and released the well of power that lived there.

His armour glowed as the warp energies played over its’ ceramite surface. Cranius’ brows knitted as he allowed himself to become a living conduit if the Emperor’s will and power.

The Force sword hummed with the Emperor’s might and finished it’s downward journey. The remaining talon sheared off and fell smoking to the floor.  The Carnifex’s hardened carapace offered even less resistance.  If surprise ever graced the face of a carnifex, sarge was sure he saw it today.

Cranius turned to his battle brethren and the carnifex fell to the floor neatly bisected – the two smoking halves cauterised by the titanic energies that caused its’ demise. It twitched a few times and then lay still.

It’s time to go – Cranius intoned flatly – like he’d just ordered a synth caf.

Sarge: Let’s double time it men!

YES SIR! – They all replied and set off once more.

There were no more interruptions on the way to the rally point but they were coming. The number of Tyranid creatures that were now being assigned to them by the Hivemind had doubled. There was going to be trouble.

Sarge was barking orders as soon before they even entered.

Sarge: Lucius – secure the bulkhead on that door!

Lucius: Right away sarge!

A mighty powerfisted hand tore the control panel from the wall and threw it to the ground looking like a discarded tissue. A massive gauntleted finger almost tenderly flicked a  tiny switch and the bulkhead swung into place. It wouldn’t hold them for long but it would be long enough. Lucius activated the gauntlet’s power field and ancient circuits and metal fused together. No one would be opening that again.

Sarge: Clavius! Cover the corridor!

Clavius carried the heavy flamer and upon receiving instruction from the sarge he wheeled about and moved toward the bulkhead door.The suit’s sensors picked up the chittering of the foe and the scraping of their fearsome claws on the all but impenetrable bulkhead.

Clavius: Reading at least eighteen lifeforms, COVER ME!

Sarge: Tecton cover Clavius!

Tecton about faced and braced himself for the possibility that Clavius wouldn’t get them all. He aimed for Clavius’s back and prepared to fill the burning doorway with bolter shells should Clavius fall.

Sarge turned to Lucius the tech as soon as he had finished ordering Clavius.

Sarge: Lucius! Get us off this deck.

Lucius unhooked the Melta bomb from his suit.  It was large enough and heavy enough that he had no room for anything else. He set it on the floor.

Opening the comms panel in his powered glove he primed it and stepped back.

It hummed and with a flash of light and heat – barely registering on the terminator armour exterior, the targeted fusion weapon vapourised a new pathway to the level below.

And with that Clavius activated his chainfist and with two precise sweeps of his powered arm, demolished the barrier.

The creatures were taken by surprise and with alien speed, turned towards him with alien malice in their black, empty eyes.

But it was too late. Clavius pressed the activation rune on the heaver flamer and a gout of superheated, cleansing, promethium coated the eighteen ‘stealers , the floor and the walls. They squealed, they writhed  they burned… and they died.

Sarge: ROOKIE! , into the hole.

The rookie, eager to prove himself jumped down through the smoking lifeline. He might get blooded this mission after all. There was a crunching, thudding sound and exclamation of ‘EMPEROR!” and then silence.


Rookie: Hey Sarge – what’s big and red and if it fell on you  it would kill you?

Sarge: No idea Rookie – the sarge rolled his eyes and sighed.

Rookie: ME!

Sarge looked down the hole and saw the rookie standing up to his ankles in a ‘stealer that had been waiting to attack them from down below.

The rookie Blood Angel Terminator was blooded now.  The other squad members barked their curt laughs and then it was business again, as usual.

Sarge was going to have to remember the rookie’s real name now – Volkus – that was it.

The rest of the squad followed the rookie – Volkus – into the hole. They’d managed to outwit the Hivemind for now.  Only one more level to go.

Sarge: Clavius, give that scum something to remember us by.

Sarge made sure the squad got down the newly minted exit and checked his HUD.  Dozens of blips were already converging on his location.  He snapped off a shot and caught the first ‘stealer  square in the forehead. He stepped into the still warm hole just as the enraged aliens barrelled around the corner and into the now vacant room.. Twenty feet later with a resounding clang and a bit of a squelch he landed in the now completely unrecognizable remains of the ‘stealer that Volkus had surprised.

Even as he dropped to the lower level he was barking orders. -CLAVIUS! – cover fire.

Clavius: Right away sir!

Clavius waited till Sarge was clear and once more his flamer vomited out its’ lethal payload of superheated promethium. This time into the room above their heads  He was rewarded with the death squeal of the foul creatures and watched with satisfaction as the blips blinked out in his HUD. They were clear for hundreds of metres in every direction. But it wouldn’t stay that way for long.

Emperor be praised they’d lost no one ….. yet!

Sarge enjoyed the brief respite, then gathering his breath he voxed –

Let’s double time it men we’re not getting paid by the hour and we still have a ways to go.

Four deep ‘YES SIR”s came back through the com.

They moved off quickly and methodically, silent prayers to the Emperor for thanks, strength and protection on all of their lips.

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