The red and steel tide surged closer to the Spaceport, their desecrated armours and flags now visible though their roars and threats had filled the defenders' ears for hours.
'Enzho', thunder rumbled on his vox, and he, a son of storms, felt serene hearing his father.
'My Khan', Enzho replied, 'The traitors are in sight, they'll be within reach of the Spaceport defenses very soon, though that will make little difference. I count seventeen Land Raiders, Lord'.
'Hunt the beasts, my son. Force them to be in reach of as many weapons as we have and target the tanks first.', Jaghatai Khan answered, his attempt at a neutral tone betraying his will to be at every battlesite, fight every enemy and kill each traitor to the Emperor.
'It will be done. We will keep the infantry occupied while we destroy the tanks. Strike true, Lord'.
'Strike fast, Enzho'.
The vox silent, he turned to his brethren, each leaning in expectation against their his steed. They didn't need a word from their commander to know it was time to ride. Enzho commanded only four squads, two of Scimitar Jetbikes and two of Attack Bikes, and a single Tank, the Predator Smilodon. In terms of hierarchy, this put him somewhere between a Khan and a more conventional Sergeant, which was nothing new among the White Scars, who frequently organized into hunting bands rather than strict squads. Enzho's force organization, though, wesn't a matter of tactical convenience, like many others. This was a group that had lasted untouched for more than a century. Whole squads had been wiped, yet were quickly replaced, made up of those Legionnaires who offered the best chances to form an almost telekinetic link with their hunting mates.
'We're drawing the larger beasts into our line of fire. Infantry is overwhelming, so move in large arcs, throw them into disarray and trample any you can, but save your ammo for the Land Raiders', Enzho instructed while he climbed onto his Jetbike, Rampant. It had been a gift from the Blood Angels - which explained why it was completely red, but also the craftmanship, like the great obsidian stallion on the prow - for distinguished service during the five years he spent with the sons of Sanguinius.
Clicks of acknowledgement came from all of his brothers. The attack bikes took the front, Enzho and the other Jetbikes forming a wide phalanx right behind them. Smilodon was kept at the rear, its lascannon configuration unencumbered by distance.
It took the fast group only seconds to come face to face with the enemy forces, World Eaters and Iron Warriors. It wasn't a small group - at least not compared to the ceramite tide that was assaulting the Emperor's Palace - but these were clearly veterans, a sort of Elite selection to break the Spaceport's defenses as expertly as possible.
'Smoke curtain', Enzho cried. Every vehicle capable of launching smoke grenades did so, the effect immediate and dramatic. The party decelerated, all but the attack bikes, who took to the flanks. Enzho waited for five seconds before giving the order to attack.
'Mangudai', he roared, using the Chogorian word, and his forces moved in unison, every Marine knowing their exact part in the ancient ambushing manoeuvre that relied on light cavalry to attract the enemy's most dangerous units to the open. The Jetbikes and Predator advanced at full speed. He saw Space Marines and Land Raiders turning to face them. Instead of charging, the Jet engined craft stopped abruptly and the Attack Bikes converged on the enemy's centre, a storm of bullets, chainswords and the bikes themselves throwing the Chaos Marines in disarray. Those Jetbikes equipped with Plasma Cannons fired charged shots, dispersing enemy squads (and the Marines themselves) while Smilodon scored a direct Alpha Strike on an Iron Warriors Land Raider, causing the behemoth to explode.
Enzho and the Jetbike squads closed the distance, immediately going for the Land Raiders. While the Plasmas and Meltas targeted the tanks themselves, Heavy Bolters and Volkite Culverins struck down weapon sponsons as well as any infantry that tried to disembark.
In these close quarters, where speed came in short bursts, Enzho could make free use of his Chainsword, Colmillus. The strategy was working, the traitors were unable to come to the Land Raiders' aid and the tanks were being forced to deal with enemies too numerous and mobile.
Then, in a second, one of his Attack Bike squads was wiped, all of a sudden. Something was wrong with his sensors, how could ten bikes disappear at once? He looked and saw what the true threat was among the traitor forces: a sorceror. His mount resembled one of the Imperial Guard's genetically modified equines, but in shape only. It was the colour of bluish flesh, like a recent corpse, but its head was bovine, constantly bellowing and lashing with its long tongue, as if on the verge of frenzy. The sorceror riding it wasn't less disturbing. It bore the colours of the Sons of Horus, but it's mutations and signs of defilement resembled those of the depraved Emperor's Children. The psyker looked at him with eyes shining with blood-red light, and Enzho felt his skin crawling, his whole mind revolting at the wrongness of that being.
The only hope for the White Scars' forces and the whole Spaceport was for Enzhoto prevent the Sorceror from causing any more mass casualties among his men. Turning his Jetbike around, he charged at the heretic. The other responded in kind, its mount releasing a bolt of fuscia energy which forced Enzho to jink hard to avoid it. As he passed the Sorceror, he threw his Chainsword, which lodged into the beast's ribcage, eating whatever organs it had beneath. At the same time, the traitor psyker aimed his sword at Enzho and twisted it. The White Scar felt his Jetbike disappearing from under him, rolling in the air to land a few metres away. Enzho, in turn, was thrown to the ground, feeling his ribs and left leg break in the high-speed fall.
The Sorceror had been thrown off his mount, as well, but landed on his feet through some unbelievable feat of balance. He was carrying Enzho's Chainsword and, with a flick of his fingers, the weapon flew back to the White Scar. The traitor was right behind it, and Enzho barely had time to block the strike, but the purpose of the blow was different. As soon as their blades crossed, Enzho felt his muscles grow weak, as if a dormancy was taking hold of him. He saw every strike come, but was unable to block a single one. The next moment he was on the ground, bleeding profusely. His head weighted a ton, his spine felt like rubber, and his arms couldn't hold a cyber-cherub right now. Still, through the pain and cacophony of alerts from his armour, he managed to activate his bike's homing beacon. As he pressed the button on his vambrace, Enzho just wished there was anything left of his bike to return. As he lifted his head, he also wished the Sorceror's sword didn't pierce his skull before Rampant reached him.
It worked. Spectacularly. As he brought the blade down, the Sorceror was rammed by the obsidian prow figure of the Jetbike, his head little more than an indistinguishable mix of blood and bone once the traitor hit the ground.
Enzho climbed back onto the bike's seat, his muscle strength returning but his pride hurt. He'd have to find a challenge soon, else he'd leave this battlefield with his bike covered in greater glory than his, but the Khan would not forgive him for jeopardizing his force's cohesion for personal honour. The rest of his forces had managed to destroy most of the Land Raiders with little casualties. It was time to return. After this defeat, the traitors wouldn't try any other attack so soon, though, secretly, he wished they would. He was already making for the Spaceport's gates when his auspex showed him his wish had been granted.
Knightrider Enzho and twenty-four other White Scars were vital in the defense of the Lion's Gate Spaceport against an enemy force twenty thousand-strong, harassing the traitors with perfectly executed hit-and-run attacks. Three hours after contact was made with this second wave, Horus' forces entered the Spaceport, slaughtering the Imperial Forces until only Enzho lasted. In a furious duel with the Iron Warrior Cursat Raddor, Enzho lifted the enemy champion's head and, with a roar, sealed one of the most extraordinary acts of resistance during the Siege of the Emperor's Palace, right before he was shredded by massed bolter fire.
This one goes to [link]
, who put together a very comprehensive list of Mongolian Words translated to English - like 'Mangudai', for example. The list can be found here, it might come in handy for some of you [link]
Again, thank you very much, Randomeye. Cheers. Also to Forge World, for the awesome Scimitar Jetbikes.