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Mark of the Xenos (2011), p122 — Plague Marines

Addendum by Codicier Taelon

Truly the deadly virulence of Plague Marines is perhaps the most insidious weapon in their arsenal. Consider this report culled from the log of the Rogue Trader Evar Worak, found when his vessel, the Summer Reign, was boarded after being found adrift.


As we passed outsystem from Heraklion, an unknown ship was spied on the augur scopes and I ordered full speed as a precaution. Sure enough the newcomer fell in with us and set an intercepting course. It was big, a renegade ship by her rig and certainly too large for us to fight. I altered course to slide past her before she could trap us insystem and we started to outstrip her. Seeing this, the renegades loosed a brace of torpedoes after us, seemingly a pointless gesture but as I altered course again to avoid their tracks, the weapons came about themselves and followed!

We fled before them, twisting and turning but the seemingly implacable devices relentlessly closed the distance. Seeing the inevitable conclusion to the race I brought us broadside and let fly at the things. Though the batteries shredded one torpedo, the other one bored on through the barrage and the close-in turret fire, to sink itself in the flank of my beautiful ship. A boarding torpedo of course, and we fought like devils to keep the enemy away from the engine rooms. We had to fight like devils because what came out of that torpedo was surely spawned by daemons. Monstrous, putrid things they were, shaped like Space Marines but filled with an indescribable foulness. Wherever their weapons struck, men fell shrieking, black veins of corruption spreading through their bodies before our very eyes.

Our weapons seemed to barely harm them, blasts and bolts sinking harmlessly into flesh and armour that had become a twisted amalgam of both. But we outnumbered them many times over and through bloodshed and sacrifice we dragged them down one by one, though each might cost us a hundred. We slew them all, burned the bodies and cast them out of the 'locks, but now I fear it was not enough.

We outran the renegade ship, but some taint has been placed upon our own. The crew are falling to disease, more of them by each hour and the chirurgeons are helpless to prevent it. Emperor protect us.