Short-Handed Desperation

So, I made an army for the campaign that I am in, the one that I played Eldar for, then switched to Imperial Guard (or Astra Militarum as they are supposed to be called now) to facilitate extra people coming in as one was an Imperial Guard player and it made alliances easier. However, Eldar are where my true love lies, so this time around, I decided to spin a real story into why this army is being fielded. How I will deploy is with all of the Imperials on the table with all of the Eldar in reserve. I think that it will be awesome to see this beleaguered, poorly equipped and poorly trained force to be relieved by the sleek frames of Eldar vehicles offloading their Aspect Warriors into the heart of the enemy army. I do not know who I will be playing, hence I eluded details like that, but I had a lot of fun thinking up this army.

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As the enemies close on the capital Hive City and the Deredians are off on reconnaissance, Inquisitor Tyzell Chaylen of the Ordo Malleus requisitions command of the available Amarah Prime Planetary Defence Force to march alongisde the armoured column that was instrumental in liberating the city in the first place. Lady Raina Alerin and Lady Thessa Riobin, a pair of Deredian noblewomen and free agents of Chaylen’s retinue, as well as Inquisitor Robinson of the Ordo Xenos, all fear that it will not be sufficient as they prepare for battle, using their psychic gifts to give their meagre forces as much of a chance as possible.

Meanwhile, Farseer Lireia Narésiel of the Eldar Craftworld Ithyl-Loc has inner demons to confront and visions to guide her. Unfortunately, her visions lead to a divergent path that her remaining forces do not agree with.

—————————————————

“Take your men to scout the Tyranid infestation to the north, Lord General,” Tyzell Chaylen uttered into his vox-unit. He was a tall figure, imposing in crimson power armour including a helmet that obscured his face, a large blade sheathed at his waist.

“It will be done, Inquisitor,” Jecerl Alerin replied, his voice crackling over the tenuous vox link. Inquisitor Lord Chaylen ran his fingers over his bolt pistol before turning to look at his accomplice. Inquisitor Robertson sat in the centre of a ruined room, clad in alien mesh armour and a long great coat, a force halberd to her side. She was swiping through cards that sat on the floor in front of her, her eyes closed and her moves were deliberate. He did not wish to disturb her divinations. He turned to walk over to a window, looking out over the crater strewn streets. Minutes flowed into hours. Hours into days. The pair repeated their actions each day for about three days.

“We will not be able to hold this location,” Robinson’s voice cut into the eerie silence that had fallen over the pair. Chaylen blinked beneath his helmet.

“Why do you suddenly say that?” he inquired, raising an eyebrow at his former students.

“Enemies will converge on the city and we are under-manned with the Deredians scouting other parts of the planet,” she replied, gathering up her cards.

Damn it, Chaylen thought to himself, immediately getting on his vox unit. “Lord General Alerin, what is your status?”

There was silence, which meant that he was too far for short range communications. He switched his vox to another channel. “Are there any Deredian forces in the vicinity of the capital Hive City?” he asked again, talking over the Deredian’s frequency. Again, there was no response.

“If they are all out of range, then we should head for the communications array in the city. We should be able to reach them from there,” Robinson suggested, now standing with her halberd in hand.

“Then we make for the communications array,” he answered, immediately turning on his heel. If Robinson was right, they may not have long before the city itself was under attack.

—————————————————

Similarly, by an old webway gate, Farseer Lireia Narésiel, clad in her dark green rune armour stood still, surrounded by warlock bodyguards as blue orbs orbited her static form. Her long, brown hair was tied up, but stray threads whipped against her skin in the wind. Occasionally, she would pluck a blue orb from the air, interpreting the runes before recasting them. She did not like this planet and Thalinia had not returned from the Craftworld. She felt isolated and alone, but her duty was clear.

“The humans falter already,” she murmured as she gathered the runes up once again. “They push the forces of Chaos from the capital and already they are under threat of losing it.”

“Our concerns with the capital are naught, Farseer,” one of the warlocks interjected, causing Lireia to face the vocal member of her council.

“True though that may be, our operations here would be far easier with stable Imperial rule on the planet. I fear that fate may call us into more direct action once again.” She turned to face the other warlocks, sensing unease in the crowd. “You have opinions on the matter, please speak your minds,” she urged, placing the last of her runes into a small pouch.

“We do not have the presence on this planet to wage war with primitives. For every one of us there are a thousand of them,” another warlock spoke out.

“Not to mention the incompetence of the Imperials,” another added. Lireia folded her arms and smiled.

“Our Rangers will keep eyes on the visitors from the Deredus system, both Imperial and followers of the Great Enemy,” Lireia started, causing one of the warlocks to angrily interject.

“The followers of the Great Enemy should be found and purged from this planet,” he answered, though Lireia just sent a cold look at him. She was inexperienced and she sometimes felt that others judged her on it.

“The Imperials will deal with them. If there is one thing that we can rely on primitives for it is their capacity for persecution. Unlike us, the forces of Chaos have proven far less subtle,” she started, facing the interjecting warlock. “It is also in our best interests to keep the humans who will not necessarily shoot us on sight in power here. As you said, for every one of us there are a thousand primitives out there. We need a distraction.” She turned again, walking over to the webway gate. She placed her hand on the wraithbone construct, running her fingers against the smooth surface. “The truth is, the Imperials will lose the capital without our intervention. I have tried to come up with a better solution, but fate, it seems, wishes to cast us into battle once more,” she continued after a brief silence, her eyes still set on the webway gate.

“I must object to this course of action,” the first warlock argued.

“I will not force any of you into this,” Lireia retorted, her eyes narrowing, “I will only take those warriors who wish to accompany me, but regardless I will be going.” She turned from her seer council and walked away.

Do my own warriors doubt me that much? Am I really that incompetent? A tear rolled down her cheek as she walked. She was alone. She did not wish to lead this force anyway. She was inexperienced. Whatever the outcome, she would march to the capital Hive alone if she had to. If fate had decreed that her time to die was now, then who was she to defy it?

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“I’m sorry, Inquisitor, we are already in the northern territories, it would take us about a day to get back to the capital.” Lord General Jecerl Alerin seemed apologetic over the vox. He was a lead-from-the-ground-level officer, so he regretted that he could not make his way back to the capital in time.

“Understood, Lord General. If that is the case, then your mission takes priority. The Emperor will guide us to victory.” The Inquisitor left the vox unit, shaking his head. “We will mobilise the local Planetary Defence Force regiment. We have the numbers,” he stated coldly, his helmeted head staring out from the communications array.

“But not the training, Chaylen,” Robinson interjected, a frown upon her face, “numbers mean nothing when you are outclassed in combat.”

“Do you not have faith in the God-Emperor? It is his will that we succeed here,” Chaylen answered, turning to face the younger Inquisitor. She felt his cold stare, even through the red helmet. It was unnerving.

“I have travelled lands where the Emperor’s will remains undone; entire planets tarnished by the presence of traitors. Incompetent ones at that,” her voice was less assertive than usual. Chaylen held the authority here, and she had to watch what she said around him. Whilst a radical, he was a faithful servant of the Emperor.

Chaylen turned from Robinson, making his way to the window, his hand to his personal vox unit. “Lady Alerin, I require your services once more,” he uttered quietly, his gaze out of the window.

“Inquisitor Chaylen, I would be honoured to serve the Emperor this day,” came a feminine voice over his vox unit, crackling slightly, “how may I serve Him?”

Chaylen smiled. He appreciated aristocrats who served the Emperor on the battlefield; none were above such service, however they may think. “I need you to bring Lady Riobin and yourself to the capital. Your assistance is required,” he replied with a calculating voice. He was deep in thought.

“As you say,” she replied, closing the vox link. With that, Chaylen turned without a word, walking out of the communications post. He had a battle to win.

—————————————————

“Farseer, we will not reach the capital before the enemy,” the Wave Serpent pilot relayed to Lireia. She was on edge already and the Dire Avengers accompanying her could see it. None of her seers had accompanied her on this mission, she felt like her strikeforce was abandoning her. Every single battle that the Eldar had won on this planet, which was not a small number, was down to the command of her older sibling, Autarch Thalinia Narésiel; a sister that was recovering from wounds suffered fighting Tyranids.

She had not proven herself to them. Every engagement that she had led, the Eldar had come away empty handed. They had avoided casualties; to her credit, she did not commit Eldar life without care, though they had been overwhelmed and forced back in every battle.

She took a rune from her pouch, it was one of the three that had been personally forged for her, allowing it to orbit her forearm. The Rune of the Everwarden. It drew upon her rune armour to facilitate her concentration when manifesting psychic powers, but the drawback was that it left her vulnerable to damage as the psychic shielding of her rune armour was left drained. It was truly a risk.

At this point, she needed to take risks. If she was going to take risks, she would risk herself as opposed to the warriors under her command.

“Farseer?” came the voice of the Wave Serpent pilot again. She looked at the rune once more, still allowing it to orbit her wrist.

“The loss of primitive life does not concern me,” she answered, plucking the rune from the air and replacing it in her rune pouch, “We will move up as one. I will not trade the lives of my warriors for their’s in a rush to get to our objective.”

“As you say, Farseer.”

The Eldar would turn up at their own convenience, not that of a primitive Mon-keigh.

—————————————————

“These soldiers barely deserve the title…” Lady Raina Alerin muttered quietly to Lady Thessa Riobin, the pair of noblewomen clad in loose, but expensive looking white coats with their hair elaborately styled; the way the two dressed themselves, the small tubes that ran into the back of their heads were barely visible. Lady Alerin rested her weight on an elaborate force staff that crackled quietly in the wind.

“This battle will be a waste of human life,” Lady Riobin responded. She appeared unarmed, though beneath her coat was a laspistol in a holster and a delicate sword at her hip.

Chaylen and Robinson continued to instruct the Planetary Defence Force into key places in the city. Fortunately, the armoured column that was instrumental in taking the city was still around, the tank commander and commissar helping to direct the Guardsmen from the hatches on their vehicles. The captain of the Planetary Defence Force made his way to the alley where the pair of noblewomen remained, raising an eyebrow.

“I’m sorry ladies, but civilians are required to leave this area,” he told them, a pre-learned response. This captain had obviously never seen any real combat. Lady Alerin grinned, shaking her head. She admitted that the two of them looked out of place, but the situation was humorous to her.

“Captain, we have seen more combat than you have, and perhaps ever will,” Lady Alerin replied, switching to Low Gothic with her staff now crackling noticeably. The captain backed up, colliding with a member of his command squad. He straightened himself up once more and frowned, Lady Riobin giggling behind her hand.

“Knock it off,” came the voice of Inquisitor Robinson, the pair of Inquisitors approaching from the other direction.

“Inquisitor Robinson, it is good to see you,” Lady Alerin greeted with a nod of the head. Inquisitor Robinson replied with nothing but the narrowing of her eyes; Lady Alerin had known Robinson for years harking back to before her days as a medic within the Deredian regiments.

“Lady Riobin, climb the building and get eyes on the surrounding areas,” Chaylen instructed, his tone completely neutral. He was incredibly focussed and Lady Riobin did not dare question him at this point.

She started to clamber up the rubble of the building with agility that surprised the PDF’s captain. Every Deredian was a light infantryman, since they did not have the convenience of a booming population any more. She eventually made her way over the edge, clambering over the wall and getting to her feet atop the building. In the distance she could see an approaching force. One that made their standing force look rather puny. Chaylen was right, they had the numbers, but these soldiers were poorly equipped and poorly trained.

“Inquisitor… They’re close. Really close.” Lady Riobin’s face dropped. She was afraid.

“As expected,” Chaylen replied over his vox unit, though he was interrupted as the top level of the building was engulfed by projectiles. The figure of Lady Riobin appeared as she threw herself over the wall, reversing as she went over the edge and grabbing a pipe that jutted from the side. Chaylen smiled beneath his helmet, his former acolyte was still as quick as ever.

“We have a problem,” she called down to them as she clung to the pipe. She reached up and shimmied back to the building, climbing down with the same agility as she had gone up. The others looked at her expectantly, apart from the captain who seemed awestruck. “The enemy force is close and large,” she started, turning to the Inquisitor. “With respect, Inquisitor, I do not believe that we can hold this position with our standing forces,” she continued, though Chaylen raised his hand and shook his head.

“Not an option, Lady Riobin. It is the Emperor’s will that we hold this city so we will do our duty or die here,” he retorted, causing Robinson to frown slightly; his callous nature often caused friction between him and any Deredian.

Another blast echoed from the nearby building.

“At the very least, we need to re-locate,” Lady Alerin broke the awkward pause in conversation. Shots were starting to patter against the walls of the nearby building, though now the tank company had opened fire in return. The PDF littered the streets in relative disarray.

“Lady Riobin, Lady Alerin, take command of a squad each. Inquisitor Robinson, take command of the new recruits to the right, I will take the ones on the left. Ensure they do the Emperor’s work today and do not quit the field,” Chaylen called out as he ran off down the left, his power armoured boots thumping against the floor.

“What about me?” the PDF captain asked, looking at the three women. Robinson frowned at him as she started to make her way to the right. She walked past him and his squad, stopping to his right for a moment.

“You need to relay Inquisitor Chaylen’s orders to the troops. Keep your vox open and do not disappoint.” She then continued to run down the street, lighter on her feet than Chaylen, though that was perhaps due to the fact that her armour was a lot lighter. The captain looked over to the two noblewomen, but they were also long gone.

The three Deredians hoped that Inquisitor Chaylen had a plan.

—————————————————

2000pts Amarah Prime PDF + Craftworld Ithyl-Loc Reinforcements

Amarah Prime PDF

HQ

General Carsi’s Command – 60pts

Company Command Squad – 60pts

HQ (No Slot)

Deredian Advisors – 150pts

Lady Raina Alerin – 75pts

Primaris Psyker – 50pts

Mastery Level 2 – 25pts

Lady Thessa Riobin – 75pts

Primaris Psyker – 50pts

Mastery Level 2 – 25pts

Elites

Troops

First Platoon – 190pts

Platoon Command Squad – 30pts

Infantry Squad One – 50pts

Infantry Squad Two – 50pts

Conscript Squad – 60pts

Second Platoon – 190pts

Platoon Command Squad – 30pts

Infantry Squad One – 50pts

Infantry Squad Two – 50pts

Conscript Squad – 60pts

Fast Attack

Heavy Support

Total – 590pts

Inquisitorial Overseers

HQ

Inquisitor Lord Tyzell Chaylen – 72pts

Ordo Malleus Inquisitor – 25pts

Power armour – 8pts

Servo-skull – 3pts

Servo-skull – 3pts

Servo-skull – 3pts

Psyker – 30pts

Force weapon – 0pts

Inquisitor Alyssa Robertson – 61pts

Ordo Xenos Inquisitor – 25pts

Servo-skull – 3pts

Servo-skull – 3pts

Psyker – 30pts

Force weapon – 0pts

Elites

Total – 133pts

Craftworld Ithyl-Loc Strikeforce

HQ

Farseer Lireia Narésiel – 145pts

Farseer – 100pts

Singing spear – 5pts

Runes of warding – 10pts

Runes of witnessing – 15pts

Rune of the Everwarden – 15pts (Counts as: The Spirit Stone of Anath’lan)

Elites

Flames of the Ancestors – 245pts

5 Fire Dragons – 110pts

Wave Serpent – 115pts

Twin-linked bright lances – 5pts

Holo-fields – 15pts

Troops

Storm of Blades – 262pts

9 Dire Avengers – 117pts

Wave Serpent – 115pts

Twin-linked scatter lasers – 5pts

Shuriken cannon – 10pts

Holo-fields – 15pts

Disciples of Asurmen – 262pts

9 Dire Avengers – 117pts

Wave Serpent – 115pts

Twin-linked scatter lasers – 5pts

Shuriken cannon – 10pts

Holo-fields – 15pts

Fast Attack

Sentinels of the Infinity Circuit – 152pts

8 Warp Spiders – 152pts

Heavy Support

Murehketh Bein Hekhita – 210pts

War Walker – 60pts

Scatter laser – 5pts

Scatter laser – 5pts

War Walker – 60pts

Scatter laser – 5pts

Scatter laser – 5pts

War Walker – 60pts

Scatter laser – 5pts

Scatter laser – 5pts

Total – 1276pts

Grand Total – 1999pts

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