Author: The Lord J
By the time they got there, the local Arbites had arrived already, and were having a somewhat heated discussion with Betancore.
"What's the problem?" Eisenhorn butted into the argument.
ďA dead genestealer almost next door to my precinct is the problem." The Arbites commander growled. "And who the hell might you be?"
"Inquisitor Eisenhorn, Ordo Malleus. And you?" Eisenhorn growled, his eyes boring into the young commander.
"Commander Farl, Adeptus Arbites. Forgive me, I was not aware of an Inquisitorial presence in this part of town." His tone mellowed a little.
"And you still aren't." Eisenhorn enforced the command with his will. The Arbites commander blanked for a second, momentarily disorientated by the gentle psychic push. He turned and walked away.
Eisenhorn looked down at the blue and purple monstrosity that lay curled up in the road. Genestealers were just one of the many perils that mankind faced in the forty-first millennium. Part of the Tyranid race, their hunched bodies were a horror to behold; blue chitinous armour plates covered most of their flesh, and long, razor sharp claws sprouted from a second set of arms. Their purple heads were elongated and full of needle-like teeth. What made these beasts even more foul was the fact that they infiltrated the human populace, creating human-genestealer hybrids, that would form an underground cult that sought to protect and nurture more of their kind in secrecy, until like a growing sore the cult would explode upwards violently, causing mass carnage in the habitation above. It was the job of the Inquisition to deal with this threat, amongst others, in the most ruthless, efficient, uncompromising way it possibly could.
Gregor Eisenhorn had fast risen to prominence in the Inquisition; indeed, later in his life he would go on to become one of the most renowned Inquisitors ever to grace the Helican sub-sector. Equally, his staff were some of the best individuals in their field he had ever encountered.
Midas Betancore, pilot and long-standing friend, of Glavian descent, a hot-headed genius of a flyer, capable of pulling off manoeuvres most balked at without even thinking about it. He was also a hell of a shot with his Glavian needle pistols.
Willow Rosenberg, witch and top-rate markswoman, was the newest and youngest member of Eisenhorn's staff, and more often than not the contingency plan for most of the Inquisitor's assaults. Able to hit with pinpoint accuracy any target up to hundreds of meters away, she was a master of the sniper rifle, and a formidable witch; her spells had often evened out seemingly insurmountable odds.
Alizabeth Bequin, psychically untouchable, she was one of Eisenhorn's best weapons. Her mere presence during battle was often the Inquisitor's saving grace; the psychically-null field that she radiated brought most psykers down to near-useless levels. She was also physically beautiful, and a quick thinker.
Aemos, Eisenhorn's savant and longest serving staff member, also the oldest of the staff, though no-one cared to ask his full age. He was certainly well into three figures. He was also the victim of a brain-disease that caused him to compulsively record data - which made him an excellent savant, and a fountain of knowledge. His keen analytical mind could often pick out connections and solutions that even the most experienced investigator could not.
And finally, Godwin Fischig, ex-Adeptus Arbites Commander, he was a massive man, even more imposing in his armour; he was a puritan in his worship of the Emperor, and despised anything alien or heretical with a hatred that perhaps only the Space Marines of the Adeptus Astartes could match.
Eisenhorn's brow creased as he peered at the dead tyranid. Something wasn't quite right. Mutations were common amongst tyranids, but there was something...something vaguely familiar about this one. He kicked it over with his boot to see it's face.
Eisenhorn's brow raised.
"Emperor's throne!" Fischig's whispered voice broke the silence. "That's a new one on me."
"Dangerous, undoubtedly. Probably physically stronger as well." Eisenhorn agreed.
"An even stronger genestealer?" Rosenberg asked. "That's gotta be real fun to fight."
"Took me four shots." Betancore grumbled. "Fast, but not too smart I'd wager."
Aemos sidled up to them and started recording as much information as he could about the abomination. "Intriguing...combining a Tyranid exoskeleton with an Ork endoskeleton..." he mumbled.
Rosenberg swatted a stray strand of red hair off her face. "What are we gonna do with it?" She asked as Aemos continued his observations.
Under normal circumstances, a Genestealer corpse would quickly be incinerated byt the Inquisition - the chemicals left behind by a decaying Genestealer were both highly toxic and, worse, had been known to corrupt living tissue into a foul Tyranid-esque parody of what it had once been. Entire limbs could be turned into hideous clawed, armoured, twisted deformities just by contacting the substance. It was something to be avoided at all costs.
However, these were not normal circumstances. As far as Aemos was aware, there had never been a recorded case of an Ork/Tyranid hybrid. Normally Tyranids chose human DNA because it represented an easier target; Ork DNA, being derived from plants, was a much more difficult substance to manipulate. Bio-adepts also joked that the Ork race was simply too idiotic to be useable to the hive mind; it would simply grow tired of the petty bickering and crudeness of the greenskins and would leave them to their own devices - which almost invariably would result in them fighting each other, more than likely to the death.
This, however, was a bit different. The two 'Stealers they had encountered had seemed to be working as two independent organisms working together, rather than two embodiments of the single hive-mind consciousness that the Tyranid race was known for. The question they faced now was whether they made arrangements for shipping it back to Terra for further investigation by the Inquisition's bio-adepts.
But, this being Araganon V, getting anything off the planet's surface was difficult, let alone the corpse of a Genestealer/Ork hybrid. Araganon V was a haven for pirates and illegal shipping of every kind; and the planet's authorities were just starting to clamp down on it all. The planet had been lost to the Imperium until a few years ago when an Astartes ship had chanced upon it and managed to resurrect some semblance of order. A planetary governer had been appointed, and the extent of the illegal traffic was only then discovered. Now security was tighter than anywhere else in the Imperium; even Inquisitors were not above suspicion of smuggling.
Getting such a cargo off the planet without rumours being spread would be doubly difficult; this was not the sort of thing that the public needed to know about. The Emperor's loyal (but mostly dishonest) subjects could not be hurt by what they didn't know about. That was the theory. In practice, those that knew of such horrors rarely lasted long enough to tell others about them.
"Bring it back to the ship. We'll decide what to do with it later. I want to root out the rest of this scum." Eisenhorn gave it one last kick with the word 'scum' for good measure, and turned to start walking.
"Great, a damned Genestealer on my ship." Betancore grumbled, donning his gloves and lifting up one end of the dead horror that lay on the tarmac. Fischig grabbed the hybrid's head with his gauntlets and hefted it up.