The journey to the Avalos system aboard the Imperial Sword Class Frigate Valiant was swift. During the voyage, the Kill-Team remained mostly apart from the rest of the crew, who in turn kept their distance, overawed to have not one, but several members of the legendary Adeptus Astartes aboard their ship. Their only real contact was with its commander, Captain Galrite Haltreme, as he gave you updates on the vessel’s progress and assurances that you would reach Avalos as quickly as his crew could manage. Kill-Team (Insert Name) went about it’s usual mission preparations. Librarian Adam took this time to read the Emperor’s Tarot to attempt to foresee any dangers to the ship. He could see only swarms of Tyranids, a known threat in the Orpheus Salient.
As the Valiant entered orbit above Avalos it came under fire. Almost immediately a swarm of Tyranid kraken emerged from behind the world’s primary moon, descending on the frigate and taking its crew by surprise. Even as the Valiant burned under a barrage of bio-plasma and pyro-spores, the Kill-Team managed to reach a drop pod and prep for launch. In a final act of duty, Captain Haltreme opened the hanger doors and fired your pod down toward the planet below. Moments later, the frigate’s hull buckled and broke under the jaws of the kraken.
The Kill-Team drop pod screamed down though Avalos’ atmosphere, leaving a trail of fire across the sky while inside you endured the brutal gravity as only your enhanced bodies are capable of. Still kilometres above the surface of the world your pod’s rudimentary guidance locked on to an Astartes transponder and in a brief burst of retro rockets changed direction to follow its pulsing signal. Scant seconds later it made planetfall, and with a deafening crack of thunder the pod slammed into the ground throwing dust and debris high into the air. Almost immediately the Kill-Team’s harnesses released and the pod’s doors were flung open. Emerging from the pod, it appears to have landed through the roof of an Imperial chapel, crashing down in the midst of pews, tiles, and statues. Through the hole made by the drop pod, the Kill-Team can see that it is a dark rainy night, water pouring down onto their armoured forms. Through shattered doors, they can see Lordsholm, an ancient and crumbling city, soaked in rain and ablaze with uncontrolled fires, stretching off in all directions. Nearby, the crack of weapons fire and thump of explosions announces a battle in progress.
Rushing outside the Kill-Team observes a battle in progress. A Captain of the local PDF is under heavy fire from a large contingent of rebels, easily in the thousands. He introduces himself as Captain Ascote of the 117th PDF and says, “Praise the Emperor you have arrived.” The PDF have set up a makeshift barricade around the chapel from fallen masonry, dead guardsmen, and even a burnt out Chimera, creating a fortified position about 200 metres across. Outside the barricade, the chapel’s graveyard and forecourt has been cleared into a killing ground some 50 metres wide; beyond this lurks the shadowy rain soaked ruins of Lordsholm and the rebel lines.
The battle is a massed bloody affair, fuelled by the alien hatred of the rebels and their vast numbers. The Kill-Team is able to disperse the rebel hordes in short order after killing their champion, but a second horde approaches, this one with riot sheilds and what appears to be demolition charges. They are stopped before any real harm can be done. Captain Ascote takes Brother Scipio aside and asks for a word. Those interested in what the Captain has to say file into the ruined Chapel while others stay on guard for more rebel activity.
Inside the Chapel Captain Ascote reveals he is actually a she, clearly a member of the Callidus Assassin Temple. She begins to explain the situation, “My lords, blessed be the Emperor you are not too late, it seems my mistress’s faith in the Deathwatch was well placed. Would that she were here to greet you herself, but I fear the xenos have her somewhere in the city, and for several days I have worn the guise of the PDF commander simply to hold these men together so that there might be a place for you to land. My name is Syndalla, at least that is what Kalistradi called me, other than this I will not waste words with pleasantries or formalities, for this city is about to fall. The Genestealers have infected much of the population and those that remain are badly demoralized and exist only within a few isolated parts of the city like this one. Added to this, I expect the vanguard of the Tyranid fleet to arrive within a matter of days. Our only hope is to send a message through the world’s astropath before the shadow falls using your Chapter cyphers and request reinforcements. This on its own, however, is not enough. Even with aid on the way, I think Lordsholm will fall before dawn. The only way to stop this is to find the Broodlord which spawned this infestation and kill it. I will give you what help I can but I also need to keep the PDF from completely collapsing. I have prepared some details to aid you in your task and will offer what knowledge I have.”
Syndalla outlines the goals she believes will aid in retaining control over the planet as well as updating the Kill-Teams map of the region with primary and secondary goals. Primary Objectives are to send an astropathic message for reinforcements, and to find and kill the dangerous Broodlord. Secondary objectives are to rescue Lord Governor Thorsholdt and aid the PDF in retaking the city. Syndalla explains the Governor and Astropath can be found in the Magistra District while there is a PDF Stronghold here in the Portica District. She has no idea where the Broodlord is. She answers any questions she is able and gives the Kill-Team access to her Vox link so they can contact her during the mission. Armed with new information Kill-Team (Insert Name) heads for the local PDF Stronghold to hopefully help turn the tide of battle in favor of the local forces.