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Tuesday, 03 January 2006
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The Best Laid Plans of Rats and Men
Page 2

The timbers of the trebuchet creaked under the strain of its load, its mighty stone weight carved with an image of the grail hung ominously above the heads of its motley crew of peasants. The men stood together in an uncomfortable silence as their liege lords were bowed in prayer.

Slowly as the knights rose the peasants began to relax, assured that their protectors were once again blessed by the Lady’s fey magiks in the defence of their lands.

As the general began to form his troops into ordered columns that would, in mid charge become the deadly lance formation, a cry went up from the crew of the mighty war machine.

Annoyed by the interruption to his battle plans the general looked in the direction the peasants were pointing, only to see a shadowy cluster of the rat men meld into the trees. At that very moment upon the rise the full force of the Skaven warhost began to assemble.

Now the general began to act quickly, ordering the knights of the quest to the wings of the line and the inexperienced knights errant to the centre, hoping the young knights would show some restraint under the stern gazes of The Ones Who Seek. Already the loose unit of peasant archers began to move up the right-hand side of the field to gain a better vantage to shoot at the foul ratmen.

Shaking his head at the thought of a man willingly wanting to use a ranged weapon instead of facing an opponent face to face brought a sour grimace to the general’s face. Still they were a valuable part of his battle plan.

The Bretonnian force was now completely mustered on the rocky slope facing the Skaven horde in loose formation on the other slope. The small river that split the two hills would run with blood before the day was out.

Raising his ancestral sword above his head he signalled the flight of the winged Pegasus knights, as the first glowing green traces that signalled rat snipers began to rend gaping holes in the armour of his core knights.

Dropping his glowing weapon the army began its slow advance down the muddy slope. As the force began to gain momentum the duke spied the small rat unit emerging from the forest and heading towards the trebuchet.

Breaking from his canter the general re directed his unit towards the small troupe of rats; they would make a fine warm up for the things to come. Spurring his roan stallion into a charge the duke reached up and closed his visor as the ground began to shake as his unit bore down upon the dark ratmen.

Sensing their attack had failed the cowardly gutterunners began to flee back towards the forest that they came from, despite the orders of the assassin in their ranks. The fleeing ratmen were trampled beneath the iron shod hooves of the charging knights.

Reeling his blood spattered stallion the general redirected his knights back towards his main force that by now had began to bear down on the main Skaven force.

In dismay the general watched as deadly green bullets tore into the front rank of knights, picking of his hand-selected champions. Nonetheless the remaining knights tore down the sloped towards the rats who appeared to be content in waiting in the foot of the valley.


Glancing up the duke noticed the rat snipers ready for another volley when suddenly half of the plateau they stood upon fragmented into a thousand stone fragments that tore apart half of their number.

No sooner had this happened, then the general felt the hairs upon the back of his neck stand up straight as the Goddess’s chosen grimaced and muttered strange incantations dissipation the evil magiks that would have obliterated the duke.

His zeal restored the duke raised his sword and repeated the cry ringing across the battle field “For the Lady and for our Lands!”

Last Updated ( Saturday, 07 January 2006 )
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