The capture of the freshly renamed Fallen Hand marked more than a victory over the Fel Dynasty, it also awarded the Hos Dynasty a wealth of information about the workings of Calligos Winterscale, and offered an opportunity to potentially eliminate Winterscale in a pre-emptive strike. Astropath Eckhart and Arch-Militant Caine were both in favour of taking their cruiser, passing themselves off as Hadarak Fel and getting to the Emperor’s Vow, eliminating it in one fell swoop.
Before any plans could be firmly established, Lord-Admiral Bastille VII entered the Svard system, intent on uncovering the truth behind the Rak’Gol world the Dynasty claimed to have discovered, and eliminating it in the name of the Imperium. Though Captain Hos debated joining this single fleet in a PR move against Winterscale’s aggression, the Lord-Admiral resisted such overtures, claiming that a fleet needed only one leader. Thus surprisingly everyone involved, Captian Hos signed over his fleet at Hemelshot to command under Bastille, with the exception of the Under Wry Beginnings. Bastille was insistent that he would not raise arms against a fellow Imperial, even one as distasteful as Winterscale, but nonetheless Hos gave orders for his fleet to rendez-vous at Hemelshot, and then proceed to the Rak’Gol colony world.
The Fallen Hand made way for Foulstone and to rendez-vous with the Fallen Hand there, before heading on to Lucin’s Breath for their execution strike. Though the Fallen Hand made good time to Foulstone, other vessels did not have Navigator Pazzano guiding their vessel. The days ticked on, and though Captain Hos and Seneschal Sarvus made good work decrypting Hadarak Fel’s private notes, the days ticked on without the transport arriving.
Finally rather than waiting, a decision was made to abandon this plan and instead head to Maleziel as Fel’s notes indicated that there was a prize of great renown there. Arriving and managing to pass themselves off as Hadarak Fel was simple, and reconnaisance and investigation didn’t take long to realise that the prize was the scattered remnants of the Ventan Iron Hounds, the institution they had so recently crushed and had declared renegade by the Inquisition in Port Wander. Identifying the warehouse where the items were being processed, the Dynasty used their brand new Teleportarium to sneak into the building.
Though a number of challenges faced them, the infiltration went well, and along with convincing a scientist to join them rather than die at Winterscale’s hands, they managed to recover a large number of cryogenic pods that the Hounds were keeping for leverage over various figures inside the Imperium. Apart from some nobles whose debauchery exceeded the norm, a few renegade psykers tagged as “Emergency weapons”, and several Navigators including one from the “lost” house Nostromo, they most importantly found the pod containing the sister of Aspyce Chorda that they had recovered so many years ago from Grace. Making off in their teleportarium, the Fallen Hand broke orbit, and responded to requests to return for a security investigation with a Warp-enhanced boost of speed to clear the range of their orbital defenses.
Chorda’s sister was left in stasis for the time being, and the Dynasty made for the edge of the system in order to return to Svard and regroup. Moments before the Navigator made for warp, proximity alarms blared as a Grand Cruiser had emerged from the Warp, literally directly in the path of their Cruiser. Navigator Pazzano recognised this as the vessel belonging to the heretical renegade Navigator Ember Nostromo, who ordered the Dynasty to surrender or be destroyed.
Naturally responding this with their usual defiance, the Fallen Hand opened up on the Grand Cruiser, and the Dynasty led a team with the Death Bastards over to the Monarch’s bridge, where they were confronted with Chaos iconography and yet another raging lunatic on the command throne with an axe Their blasphemy proved no match for the Hos Dynasty, but even with their death the vessel continued on unabated, apparently unconcerned with the loss of their senior crew. Planting the demolition charges and awaiting a beamout from their vessel, the group was confronted by foul, sorcerous tongues issuing from the speakers that seemed to burn their very soul.
Destroying all internal communications, their next intrusion came from Nostromo herself asking them to open the bridge so that she and her friends could communicate. Sarvus attempted to set a bomb that would kill the Navigator when the doors opened, but before the trap could be sprung, the bridge’s sealed doors opened revealing the Navigator, and a sextet of summoned daemons at her side. A fierce battle raged, with Eckhart confronting the Navigatrix personally while the remainder of the Dynasty fought the daemons’ mind control powers and managed to send them back into the Warp. Their teleportarium finally whisked them back to the Fallen Hand where they witnessed the “destruction” of the enemy bridge.
Although the battle was far from over, instead of a furious countervolley from the Monarch of Whispers, communications were again issued from Nostromo indicating that she had recognised Eckhart, and that she wished to talk of an alliance against their mutual enemy. Information that Eckhart could not corroborate, or even make sense of…