Rebirth (Short Story)
|This article is about the short story by Chris Wraight; for the novel by Nick Kyme, see Salamanders: Rebirth (Novel)|
Captain Kalliston of the Thousand Sons, taken captive in the shattered ruins of his homeworld, is tortured and interrogated by an unseen foe. He is sure that he knows the nature of his captor, and plays a dangerous game to get him to reveal himself. But the truth is very different and far more dangerous than he thinks, and he is in more danger than he could possibly imagine...
Menes Kalliston, Captain of the Thousand Sons 4th Fellowship, returns to Prospero with his men after having been ordered away by his primarch shortly before the Space Wolves invasion, and against the advice of his second-in-command Revuel Arvida. Touching down in the ruins of Tizca Kalliston and his squad spread out to search for information and discover evidence of the Wolves before coming under attack by enemy Astartes glimpsed in the ruins. Kalliston orders a retreat back to the ship but falls into an ambush and is knocked unconscious by a missile detonation. Taken captive, he is interrogated by an unknown Space Marine he assumes is a Space Wolf, and the entire story is told in flashbacks as he answers questions and his damaged memory slowly recovers. His interrogator eventually reveals himself as Kharn of the World Eaters, shattering Kalliston's assumptions, and tells Kalliston he and his men were sent to Prospero to recover the Moon Wolf, a pendant from Horus's armour that Magnus used to contact his spirit during his fall to Chaos. His Athanaean powers returning, Kalliston sees into Kharn's soul and deduces that he came to Prospero for a second reason, and offers to heal the debilitating psychosis caused by the butcher's nails. For a single instant it seems that Kharn will be redeemed, but then he flies into a rage and beats Kalliston to death.
Meanwhile in Tizca, Revuel Arvida falls back to the ship only to find it taken by the World Eaters, and takes revenge by shooting their leader dead. Using his Corvidae powers to evade pursuit and learn that he will not die on Prospero, he utters the line 'knowledge is power' and goes into hiding, the final lines emphasising his similarity to the future Blood Ravens.
- Menes Kalliston - Captain, 4th Fellowship of the Thousand Sons Legion.
- Revuel Arvida - Sergeant, 4th Fellowship of the Thousand Sons.
- Orphide - Astartes, 4th Fellowsip
- Pharet - Astartes, 4th Fellowship.
- Khârn - Captain of the 8th Assault Company and Equerry to the Primarch, World Eaters Legion.