This was my longest, gamiest, turn; already hard to express in narrative terms, it was further dogged by dice which were beginning to feel the chill somewhat, and by my tendency to become rather crabby and pedantic (or rather, more so) after about eight-thirty in the evening. Indeed, the Cryx participation in this round is best represented in terms of what the adversaries could do regardless… which is strange, because I’d been gearing up for at least one kill this turn. I knew we should have played Dominion instead. No dice in Dominion, see?
The Deathjack, out of control range, was forced to go after Haley with only the Skulls of Hate for company. Haley ducked and dived and weaved like a mad thing, I rolled a lot of fours and fives on two dice, and the net result is shown to the immediate left.
After some extremely cautious measuring, repositioning of the damn arc nodes which had been tied up, rendering them useless and blocking my charge lanes all game, this was the result; a wave of Mechanithrall charges that scrapped the Destroyer and punched a giant hole in Karchev, but didn’t quite kill him or lock down the Behemoth.
In desperation, I charged the brute with a Pistol Wraith (thank you Elevation + Incorporeal) who Death Chilled him from behind, very roughly. Another did so to the Behemoth from the front, but we couldn’t get a good photo of that.
The abominable helljack closed in again, but this time Haley was ready for it. As the first claw swept in, she planted her spear in its path, letting its strength and momentum do the work for her. The spear tip gouged a great rent; the claw shore in two around her, and the pieces tumbled, smoking, to the ground.
It swung again, at head height this time, but Haley was ready, spinning the spear and dodging under its grip, ramming the point home into the ball joint of its arm. The spear bit deep, metal shrieked, and the grimy bronze skull on the ‘jack’s shoulder flared bright green as something essential came loose beneath it.
Furnace roaring, metal snarling, it swept its horns around, striking Haley’s power field and raising a shower of blue sparks. When they cleared, Haley was still standing – goggles cracked, bleeding from a long cut, but still standing; yet no cheer came up from the Cygnaran lines, for Haley’s men had taken the fight onwards.
Leaping over and under the gouts of toxic filth spwering from the witch’s outstretched fingers, the Rangers of Bloodsmeath closed the distance on the ruined temple. Something moved among the pillars – something shadow-grey and gleaming white. Even as one tossed up a flare, the other raised his rifle and levelled it.
The bullet struck home, and something howled; something yet living. The flare lit up the night, and for a moment, the dark temple was illumed stark white.
Haley’s Charger raised its cannon and fired, two shots howling through the pure white moment. One went wild, but one struck home, punching through the iron ribs of the lich lord, spilling green light and hot metal to sizzle on the temple floor.
Even as the captain fought, and her Lancer stumbled beneath the tide of shadow-shrouded figures closing in, Gunner Barker did his part. A thing of armoured shadow powered out of the night toward them, axe in hand; this time, his hand closed around his knife by his own choosing, and this time, it struck true, between the clacking jaws of the thrall.
Rhupert continued to play his “ignore, ignore, ignore the nasty terrain!” song, the Flameguard moved up and assumed Shield Wall around the Revenger, and the Zealots took position and chucked some bombs at the Nightwretch that’d been parked between them and the Cygnarans for three turns, blowing its gun clean off.
Far more crucially, however, the Bastions, borne up by Rhupert’s merry marching tune, were sufficiently Pathfindery to enter the Temple!
One downside of Alex being but a wee lad is that, unlike the club members who are old enough to really have more important things to do than play with toy soldiers, he has a bedtime, which was rapidly approaching. He had time to play out a few more actions; though – so here’s Alex, checking his control area…
… remembering about Death Chill, and picking up the dice to have the Juggernaut smash the Brute engaging Karchev so that Karchev can Tow the Behemoth out and the Behemoth can do what Behemoths do best…
… and while he finished off the Bile Thralls and beat up a Deathripper a bit, here’s the result of his bombard shots. Just down there, underneath this poorly-aligned text.
|Nothing. Nada. Zip.|
The Lich was yet living, the Behemoth’s ammunition was spent, and Karchev’s fuel lines were oozing something important – there was a deep chill in his remaining bones, as if the grave were calling him back before his work was done. Wounded, with one warjack down and one surrounded by chattering, hungry undead, the machine man quit the field as true night fell on the Bloodsmeath. Calling the Behemoth back from the feet of the temple, Karchev fell back to the north-west, toward Ravensgard, while Reinholdt bolted southwards.