Green Tide

Southern Dependencies, Void Wolf Sector, Planet Metfinda's World

Grummgrus Toofkilla

A vicious grin formed on his large lips as the dropship shook. The pilot did his best to avoid the anti-air fire from the planetside defenses. The aft section was full to the brim with the warriors of the half a ten War Teams that he did the honor of dropping with. Every last warrior was muscular with leathery green skin. Like any Urk worth his salt they were mountains of bulging muscles. They were as tall as Terrans but bulkier and angrier. Grummgrus' own two tusks were larger than the average Urkoid and with his fangs it allowed him to flash a vicious and intimidating grin.

He stood above the Urks with his taller and bulkier frame. Like many leaders of their kin he was a Charruk, who was a mightier breed of Urk – and in his opinion possessing of a greater intellect.

"Warcommander, we be a minute from dirtside," the pilot said over the small radio attached to the neck of his body armor.

"Good," he answered. "Get ready to drop boyz!" He barked.

The Urk warriors waved their weapons and fists in the air and roared. "Eternal Greenskin!"

He took his crude bolter off the strap and gripped it firmly in his large green hands. It wasn't one of those stupid Imp boltguns with a fancy plasma charge in the bolt, no, this was a proper bolter with an explosive charge and tiny shrapnel for additional damage for a more fun experience. For the shooter at least he supposed.

"Ten seconds," the pilot announced over the internal communication system.

Grummgrus took his place by the ramp. Any warcommander worth his muscles was among the first out in a drop. His yellow-colored metal boots clanked against the metal floor as he crossed the aft section. On his head was a helmet with a faceplate that had eye slits and side holes for his tusks. He had the low jutting forehead of all of his specie and he wore body armor of Aldinium and a pineapple-yellow long coat. Its purpose was to beam that he was a field commander of significant rank and prestige. The moment the ramp lowered he charged out with the warriors at his back. Further down the street was a poor four-man unit of Imp soldiers in green power armor, and Grummgrus fired two bolts to makes sure he was the first to spill enemy blood. One missed but the other pierced a soldier's armor in the chest and detonated – blowing a hole in his chest and sprayed a crimson liquid. He saw thousands of dropships descended upon this city from orbit.

Hundreds of thousands of Urruks were descending upon this world to restore it to its former glory before the Imps conquered it from some puny warlord to worthless to be remembered. Urruks was the common name used for all breeds of Urks, from Charruks to Urks and others.

He charged up the street with the warriors and linked up with hundreds and hundreds of warriors. They broke down doors to search and pillage houses. He heard shooting from every direction. Battle was everywhere around him and he had no doubt that this world would fall quickly. He would prefer in the warriors all waited to loot till later, but any field commander of intelligence understood that there would always be a momentary loss of troops for any battle due to the desire to loot.

"Rally on me!" He roared as he continued onward to his first objective. He reached for his radio and tuned it to the frequency of his subordinate commanders. "Oy, Battlecommanders report."

"Battlecommander Salguts groundside and killing. My boyz and I are should be east of your position, boss," one answered.

"Battlekommanda Greffin Spida-Eata 'ere, boss," the only Urk Battlecommander under him responded.

"This is Jochdeff, sir. I'm assembling my boyz as we speak," came a third voice.

The fourth voice was new and not one of his Battlecommanders. "Sir, this is First Shooter Ezhrub. Battlecommander's dropship got shot down. He didn't make it."

"You're the second in command?" Grummgrus inquired.

"Yes, Warcommander!"

"Ezhrub you'll be the new Battlecommander for your Battle Kompany if you survive the day. Listen up now you lot: I want Salguts and Greffin to link up with me. Ezhrub you flank the plaza from the west and Jochdeff you flank it from the east. Do not launch your assaults until my command. Is all that clear?"

"Yes, boss!" They all confirmed in unison.

If the First Shooter could prove himself skilled enough he'd promote him tomorrow. If he followed orders and fought well this day he would prove himself in his eyes. He smirked longingly as he dreamt of his own promotion. He had been a Warcommander for long enough as far as he was concerned. If his boyz were the first to assail the city's fort's walls and seize it he expected that to be a perfect start to shine here, shine bright enough for the warlord to recognize him.

Grummgrus stopped to gather his strength before the assault on the plaza. It was a larger square that was perfect for defense and to land transports with vehicles and war beasts that were perfect for urban warfare. The Imps would be fools if they hadn't fortified it. At least a regiment would have to be stationed there to properly hold it. It commanded scout war teams sent out in the direction of the square. It was not long until Salguts and Greffin joined him with additional Urk forces. Salguts brought the First Shooter of a one-hundred-twenty warriors strong War Group made up of Charruks.

As the First Shooter crudely saluted him, Grummgrus grinned. He and his warriors wore full sets of crude and bulky power armor.

"Warcommander Toofkilla," he said, his gaze firmly locked with Grummgrus. "My War Group's dropships were shot down and came off course. My Battlecommander is somewhere across this city." After a good twenty seconds, he diverted his gaze to his boots. He had shown his worth by locking eyes with a superior but looked away before he did not too long to show that he was not challenging him.

"Have you contact your Battlecommander then I assume?"

"I have," he confirmed in his cruel and rough voice. "Warcommander Grummgrus Toofkilla, my warriors, and I request permission to go into battle under your command."

"I accept, First Shooter. We shall depart soon." Grummgrus gestured to Salguts. "My Battlecommander will inform you of our objective."

"Yes, sir!"

Salguts nodded obediently.

Grummgrus had no power-armored boyz under his command. They were a simple, regular Infantry Battle Gathering, divided up by four Battle Kompanies who were each commanded by a Battlecommander. His full Battle Gathering had a strength of seven-thousand two-hundred warriors. He expected at least two-hundred to have died when dropping planetside. Perfectly within the perimeters of acceptable losses. About then his scouts returned. They reported – as he'd suspected – a regiment of defenders, Imperial Army power armor, many dozens of heavy machinegun and bolter turrets and barricades of metal and sandbags that faced all four roads into the palace.

Finally, word came from Jochdeff and Ezhrub that their forces were in position. That formed a grim smile over his lips. He made sure that his powered-warhammer was firmly attached to his back before he raised his boltgun and roared. All warriors turned their eyes on him and when he pointed forward with his rifle and began to move, they broke into a charge up the street. They would quickly close the eight-block distance between them and the square and soon he saw the troopers looking up from behind cover and gunners on turrets. They poured rounds into the green tide that approached.

For now, Grummgrus hung back to fire from behind the cover of a hover car. He was flanked by two of the power-armored Charruks. One of them looked down the scope of a sniper rifle and carefully shot at tactical targets,

"Focus on the gunners and officers," Grummgrus told him.

"Yes, boss," they affirmed.

The tide of warriors charged the troopers' defenses firing weapons and wielding melee arms. Every second many dozen fell to heavy turret sprays and well-placed bursts from battle rifles. The street quickly turned green with Urk corpses and crimson with Urk blood. The sixty-meter gap was quickly closing by each second. When it was down to thirty-meters Grummgrus left the hover-car and charged ahead as well. It was at that moment that eight of the ten turrets capable of shooting in their direction had to reload. It led them to close the gap with far fewer casualties. Urks jumped over the barricade with axes swinging and bolters firing at close range. Many of them perished by Imp fire but the rest turned the fight into a brutal melee as Imp chainsaw bayonets faced Urk axes. Carnage followed as thousands of warriors pressed against those in front of them.

"The Imps are throwing most of their men into the fray," Salguts yelled over the radio to Grummgrus, trying to be heard over the lovely sounds of battle.

Of course, they are. Like he had intended. He opened a frequency over his radio to his western and eastern forces.

"Time's upon you. Charge!"

"Yes, Warcommander!" Jochdeff complied eagerly.

Ezhrub responded with a war cry and as Grummgrus pressed through his men and jumped the first southern barricade. He hung his bolter battle rifle over his shoulder by its strap and brought forth his two-handed powered-warhammer. In the chaotic mess, he saw an Imp. It amused him that a regular Terran in power armor was no taller than him, or any other Charruk. The only reason the Imps had built such a vast empire was the super-metal-men. The powered-armor wearing Ultra Marines – or angels as he'd heard Terran slaves refer to them. He swung his warhammer at the Imp in sight and it hit the chest – crushing metal and bone and piercing flesh. An electric blast shook the body and made the flesh smolder. He finished the man by a swoop of his warhammer to crush the visor. It obliterated everything between it and the ground. The piercing edge became coated in a layer of blood.

A few Urks fell in around him and he pointed his warhammer toward the row of turrets that stood on a raised platform behind the second barricade.

"With me, take those turrets!" He needed them all offline. They couldn't fire into his forces without cutting down their own but they could focus them on the flanking forces.

He pressed forward through the chaotic butchery, stepping over Urk and Terran corpses on the way. He killed two Imps before he found a path out of the melee and then charged the silent turrets. Six Urks was with him. Two quickly saw their brains splattered by Imp-bullets. One of the Urruks behind him was a Charruk in power armor and since the Imp battle rifles fired regular bullets they all bounced off his armor. They needed far heavier things to break that armor. When he came into range he swung his axe so hard that he broke the bolter turret and broke both arms of the gunner that had tried to desperately turn it against him. He could only scream for a moment before Grummgrus killed him.

"Kill him! K-kill him!" A presumed officer cried in desperation.

The response came from the warhammer burying itself in his guts, and the second was the loud war cries of the flanking forces when they crashed into the defenders' west and eastern plaza defenses. He saw them easily break through the poorly defended flanks. The north road was quickly becoming cut off to prevent an Imp retreat. He laughed as he swung left and right and slew and maimed Imp after Imp. So many wounded Imps screamed in agony. No Urruks though, for Urruks did not scream in pain. It was not done. Soon only Urruks remained and he allowed himself to catch his breath. He looked around him to see thousands of corpses on the ground. In such a short time so many had died.

"The Eternal Greenskin would be proud," he mumbled proudly. He looked for Salguts. "Oy, call the fleet. Tell them we have secured the plaza and it's ready for use."

"Will do, sir," Salguts responded. "Oh, and sir?"

"Yeah?"

"That Ezhrub is dead."

Grummgrus chuckled. "Didn't make it eh?"

"Nope." Salguts had picked out a cloth and wiped down the edge of his axe. "Guess he had more bark than bite," he joked and walked away to carry out the order he had been given.

"And get me the casualty numbers!"

"Got it!"

The medics began to tend to the wounded Urks and the moaning of wounded Imps became rarer by the second as they were treated to mercy kills. It was the least they could do for their beaten foe. He sank down against the turret he had previously smashed and closed his eyes. The face of his beautiful mate appeared before him- clear as day – her magnificent thighs, her firm jawline, and her beautiful tusks. When I come home I'll be a warboss, he thought. Then I'll have a private Spawning Chamber. He imagined a future with hundreds of children running through the halls of his own personal fortress. Junthrûcia deserved no less. Lost in thought he wasn't sure how much time had passed when he heard Salguts's voice.

"Warcommander, Warcommander."

He forced his eyes open and stood up and returned his mind to the present. He paid no attention to the blood-drenched state of his lower body armor and trousers.

"Yes, Salguts?"

"Landing transports are heading down with war beasts and vehicles," Salguts began. "I also got the casualties." He smiled. "We lost just over three-thousand. Same as the regiment here."

Grummgrus was pleased. "Excellent. That is good news. Over half the War Gathering should be enough to initiate an assault on the fort."

"If everybody else does their job, it'll be a cakewalk."

"How's the power-armor boyz by the way?"

"Twenty-nine fatalities. Twelve injured."

"Hmm. Good." He reached out to place a firm hand on Salguts's shoulder. "The assault will be a thing of beauty." So much so that the warlord would have to notice him and throw him a promotion.

Salguts returned the gesture. "I know. It'll be grand. Don't forget me when you're a big bad warboss."

Grummgrus laughed heartily and patted him on the shoulder. The walls of the fort were visible over the buildings a few kilometers away. As transports arrived they brought boyz to hold the square so that his bloodied War Gathering could advance. He assembled his forces and saw how the first transport unloaded thirty small buggies. Each was armed with a heavy machinegun and a gunner that stood in the back. Five Walkers marched off the ramp. Each of those impressive machines was twelve-meters tall and a pilot sat in each. He wondered how it was to sit in one of those steel sarcophagi. He imagined it both thrilling and unimaginably claustrophobic. He envied them equal as much as he didn't envy them. Urks cheered as the large Walkers walked out of the transport. Despite their size, these Knight-type Walkers were far from the largest of Walker types.

The Walkers and buggies made their way into the city to seek a glorious battle. When the second Landing Transport landed in unleashed ten beasts of war. The Siegebeasts crawled out on six spider-like legs. They had beige skin and their head and back were covered by the thick carapace, and atop the carapace, a large cannon was mounted. On it sat the gunner and rider that controlled the creature. Grummgrus saw how many of the younger warriors were in awe. They had never seen a war beast from their ancient homeworld before and he remembered fondly the first time he'd seen one in his youth. The Siegebeasts would raise their guns and fire bolts of electric plasma energy toward the fort.

As he felt his warriors combat fervor increase, he ordered them to advance on the fort. First, he would breach the outer wall, then the inner wall and finally the central keep. Greffin's vanguard skirmished with Imps, but those were the only fighting on their path. The sounds of battle, explosions, screams, and gunfire were loud in the distance as the battle raged throughout the city. He saw how the anti-air batteries of the fort were gunning down dropships and large Landing Transports that all crashed into the city causing further devastation. From the outer wall, Imps fired bursts down from battle rifles, sniper rifles, and machineguns.

Grummgrus was contacted by Greffin Spida-Eata. "Warkommanda, got word from scouts," the Urk notified him.

"What's the word, Greffin?"

"Boyz are sayin' a nearby gate's been destroyed by artillery."

He knew it'd be a kill zone his warriors would assault but he hadn't been presented with any other valuable alternatives. Besides, as any Urruk knew any great victory was a costly victory.

"We'll take the breach then. Grummgrus out."

He assembled his three living Battlecommanders and a First Shooter a kilometer from the fort behind the cover of buildings. He quickly declared the First Shooter a full Battlecommander. He only had one question for them.

"Who wants to be first through the breach?"

"I got it," Jochdeff said.

"No. I'm a better choice, boss," Greffin disagreed and argued his point. "I got a thousand boyz – he got a few hundred."

"My boy can do it no matter what the odds," Jochdeff declared in rising anger. He turned away from Greffin and to Grummgrus. "You know you can count on me."

"Greffin's boyz are going in first," he decided. Greffin grinned happily at the news. "The powered-armored boyz are going with you."

"Ye won't regret it. I promise that."

"I better not. You best get your boyz going. There's already fighting around the breach."

Other Urk forces were exchanging fire with the defenders. The number of corpses that laid among the gate rubble told Grummgrus that there had been two failed assaults this far. The wrecks of an Urk tank and two Walkers laid on the outside of it. When all this came into a few of the warcommander his vanguard was already charging ahead to close the one-hundred meters between them and the inside of the fort. Grummgrus jumped up on the closest downed Walker and roared as loudly as he could. It was the rallying cry for all Urks to eagerly join the assault. They took fire from the walls and the Imps that hid behind the gate rubble.

He jumped off the Walker and roared again. He fired at the top of the wall with his bolter. The defenders among the rubble quickly withdrew before the Urks rapid advance, firing as they did.

He turned his radio to an open frequency and declared, "This is Warcommander Grummgrus Toofkilla. We're pressing right through the south gate. Seize the moment and press to join me. Glory waits for no Urk." He then charged the breach himself, stepping over the fallen without a moment's thought spent on their lived cut short.

As he gazed over the horde of warriors he saw that the vanguard faced a half-circle of defenders that poured hails of bullets into them. Like he had known they had formed a kill zone for anyone brave enough to charge the breach. Unfortunately for them, he had the one thing that could break their kill zone. Urks, Urks, and Urks. A gaze behind showed him that thousands of Urks were joining the charge. He saw Battlecommanders and fellow Warcommanders both amongst them. Finally, he stepped over Imp corpses as well as Urk corpses as he officially set foot inside the fort. Lines of Urks were storming up the stairs to the wall and in toward the structures that laid in the area between the outer and inner wall. He paused for a moment when he recognized Jochdeff's corpse on the ground. He'd had half his skull blasted off. The damage was clearly that of a bolt – no doubt about it. The ground was coated in a layer of blood and gore in a glorious display of brutality. The simple act of walking left his yellow armored boots covered in it. He bends down over the body.

There was no doubt about it. The wound was partially cauterized. Something is known to occur with Imp bolters because of the plasma charge inside each bolt. Whoever killed him had apparently looted an Imp bolter at some point from an Ultra Marine. He then got up and stepped over his subordinate's body. Urks killing each other in battle was neither new nor surprising. It was a good way to advance up the ranks after all.

Warriors were dividing between firing at the inner wall, assaulting up the outer wall to clear it, and clearing out the various buildings; barracks, armories, storages, and so forth. Many of those were held by Imp troopers. In all honesty, Grummgrus looked with approval at how they had chosen to make those buildings their final stand. They would give no more ground. They would fight and die. He chose to stand back as the green tide cleared the fort building by building and for Siegebeasts to be brought up to pummel the inner wall. The inner wall was twenty-meters tall, a full ten-meters lesser than the height of the outer wall. The Siegebeasts climbed up the side to sit upon the outer wall by use of their insect legs. Their combined fire was slowly tearing the inner wall apart as they focused their hail on one section of it. Soon the section exploded open and the way forward was clear. Grummgrus pushed on through the mass of Urks. He needed to work his way to be the first into the keep. Some two-thousand Urks made the final charge through the breach. Thousands more laid dead around him, with reinforcements slowly pouring in as more arrived. He wondered how many of his warriors yet lived. Grummgrus had to run across thousands of dead Urks to simply reach the breach. He pushed Urks aside and stopped. The dual doors of the keep laid thirty-meters before him. They reached up to eighteen-meters in height, massive things. The keep was a large structure constructed from black and grey stone.

He reached for his radio. "All warriors to me!" He called for his War Gathering to assemble for the charge into the keep itself. It needed to be him, it had to be him that took it. He was displeased to see that a mere hundred joined his march to the doors. No more than one-hundred. Was that all that remained of his War Gathering? None of his Battlecommanders were among them. He snorted. They had all gotten themselves killed then. "Forward to glory!"

They charged the last fifteen-meters to the stairs and the massive doors. They were forced open and he charged into the entrance hall of the keep. A red gilded carpet stretched from the dual doors and to the corridor at the other end. White pillars lined the hall and a staircase went up to a second-floor balcony on both sides of the corridor. The balcony connected them to the center. Tapestries and mosaics covered the walls. They depicted warriors in green armor with arms and pauldrons a dark brown color – as was the helmet. They had a golden sword insignia across their chests. This was one of the Imps Legions, he realized. It was probably the Legion that had taken Metfinda's World in the first place. What had the Imps renamed it? Gaevalon, wasn't it?

"Spread out, clear this place out," he commanded. Terrans were hiding in here somewhere.

He walked with twenty warriors down the corridor ahead of them. Twice they blasted locked metal doors open. He intended to find a command center in the center of the keep, but when his warriors forced the final door open he stepped into a large circular chamber. The ceiling was painted with strange symbols and figures and across the chamber stood a religious altar and behind it stood a thirty-meter tall statue of a golden woman. Was that their Empress? His warriors filed into the chamber with bolters raised, for they were not alone. The statue was not the most interesting thing in the room. No. That honor went to the five Ultra Marines. Their armor was the same as depicted in the tapestries and mosaic in the first hall.

"Well, well. So there are some good opponents here after all," he said, grinning viciously. His fingers ached to fight these warriors of the Terrans God-Empress. He had to deal with it before the other Warcommanders and the Warboss made their way there.

The central warrior raised his hands to remove his helmet. Grummgrus was surprised, his eyes wide when the warrior turned out to be a female. Her face was thin and round, her cheekbones high and adorable amber eyes staring back at him like icy daggers. Her skin was fair and her umber hair was formed into a high-set ponytail that looked quite good for having to be squashed into a helmet.

"Hear me, Urk scum. I am Captain Rei Warhowl of the Second Company, and Lady of Amor," she declared adamantly.

He assumed that was the name given was the keep he was about to cleanse. He snorted. He'd heard the claims of female super-soldiers but thought it no more then gossip to discredit any noble Urk that had lost a battle to the Imperium. Clearly he was wrong on both accounts. What 'superior' folk forced their women to war? Urk women were too busy running society bringing forth the next generation to go to war. Further, he did not appreciate being referred to as a simple Urk.

The female continued. "You defile a stronghold of the Daughters of Mara with your vile stench. I must defend these hallowed grounds and this world from all foes of the Imperium."

"I'll honor you by making you the first Daughter of Mara whose meat my tusks will taste," he said.

"You will never feel the taste of our blood. Your invasion stops here."

He laughed at that claim. "With a company?" He took his warhammer off his back. He was perfectly happy to find out.

She returned her helmet to her head and gripped her bolter battle rifle. "That's all I'll need."

As he was to unleash his war cry voices came over the radio.

"Boss, we be ambushed!"

"Metal-men out of nowhere!" Another reported and he heard boltgun weapons fire in the background.

Anger overtook him and he roared and rushed at the female warrior with his powered-warhammer raised and ready to crush her chestplate. As he crossed the chamber she fired four rounds from other bolter and each was followed by a scream or the noise of bolts piercing flesh and detonating inside. Thrice he swung at her and thrice she dodged. On the fourth, she blocked him with the chainsaw bayonet of her boltgun. Around him, his warriors attacked the other four Daughters of Mara.

Their arms clashed and he pushed his face close to hers. "You know why they call me Toofkilla girlie?" He had a grim smirk on his face. "Cus I bloody my tusks on my foe's flesh." She pushed with surprising strength that staggered him for a few seconds. Those were enough for her to press her chainsaw bayonet to saw off his right hand. He roared in pain and rage.

With a single hand, he swung the warhammer in a long horizontal strike that she dodged. His next swing was blocked and each time his arm touched hers there was a spark of electric energy. Then he caught her by surprise by charging into her and pushing her back, almost causing her to fall over. His warhammer struck her hard and send her to the ground hard. Imp power-armor was tougher then he'd thought, however. Far tougher than the Imp troopers' suits for certain. It had buckled and showed a small crack, but it had not fully crumbled or reached her skin. The time he took to see this and strike again allowed her enough time to roll aside and stand up. Before he could recover from his strike the female closed the gap between them and delivered a painful cut to his right side. His rage boiled ever more by this wound.

He heard a voice over his radio, a commanding voice. It was the Warboss that led the attack on the city.

"Warcommander Grummgrus, report your status. I'm in the keep and I order you to leave the enemy commander to me by right of command."

Did he command him to spare this Terran whore? He roared in rage and when the Warboss spoke again he leaned the warhammer's long handle against himself and ripped off the radio and crushed it in his hand. He narrowed his eyes on the female and swung again and closed the distance between them quickly.

"You can't win! Urruks are eternal!"

She dodged his strike and rose between him and the warhammer's edge and her chainsaw bayonet ripped into his neck and opened a stream of crimson liquid that sprayed her. His raging roars came down to petty gurgling and he staggered back, fell to his knees, and grasped at the blood gushing out in vain. Darkness closed in around his mind and his vision blurred. Then he fell forward, the darkness to claim him. He died at her feet as the other four Daughters of Mara dealt with the last of his warriors in the chamber.