Konrad Josef ran down the corridor of the Dictator Class Cruiser Divine Retribution, having just received word for a briefing for all Skybourne troops. The ship they were on housed the Phantine Air Corps, so naturally Phantine's sole infantry division, the Skybourne Drop Troopers, were also along for the mission. Several of his squad mates were right behind him as they sprinted down the corridor, dodging Servitors and menial labor as they ran towards the flight bay assigned for their Valkyries and Vulture gunships. A few Drop Sentinels were there as well, but those rarely saw deployment, and were more for the look then anything. They were in full combat gear, helmets clutched in one hand, Hellguns in the other, and were one of the first, oddly enough, to arrive. Their CO, Captain Georgy, was already there with some fresh faced Lieutenant. Great, some new guy probably assigned by Segmentum Command, in their infinite wisdom, to gain experience in all forms of combat used by the Guard. Georgy and the LT watched as the men poured in, chattering about the shift in direction the Retribution and her few support vessels had taken. They had felt the ship turn in a direction differing from their original bearing, some R&R on some Forge world as they refit the Cruiser with updated weaponry and picked up some slave crews that had been shipped there for them. The Captain stood on top of a ammo box, letting the Skybourne see who was speaking, and began the briefing. "Alright men, cut the chatter and listen up. As you most likely already know, The Divine Retribution and supporting ships have changed course. Destination is Cadia. Before you start gossiping, they don't need any assistance fighting of a Chaos attack yet. Reports are that an Ork Waagh has stormed the capitol city, and the 23rd Death Korps Siege Regiment has sent out a request for all able bodied and unengaged regiments to rally to beat said orks back to wherever they came from. That means us. Astropaths have already sent word that the Phantine Air Corp is on route, and its Drop Troops, the Skybourne, are also on route. We are also one of the closest groups, so were being reassigned there. The Emperor has blessed our Navigation, allowing them to find a flow in the Warp speeding our travel. We are about to hit the Warp, so our new Officer, Lieutenant Skald, will introduce himself and explain deployment plans. Lieutenant?"
Skald stepped onto the box, his uniform fresh pressed and far too clean to have seen any action. His face was also far too young to have seen anything more then recordings of battles. Why he had been sent to their unit, out of all the ones in the Imperium, was beyond Josef's rational. The man's voice was also young, and mutterings that it would crack brought quiet chuckles at the Lt. "Alright Skybourne, I am Lieutenant Skald, by order of Segmentum to be integrated with your unit. My last unit was destroyed in combat against the Tau Empire, and survivors are being distributed to units that could use extra manpower. As the Captain said, I will explain early deployment strategy. Due to the nature of this situation, only Veteran Drop Troopers will deploy initially, as we suspect that the ground will be too hot for most untried troops to head into initially. So, only three squads of twelve are going in initially, and once secure drop points are set up, the rest of your men will come down. I have a list of new set ups, who leads who, and what Valkyrie you will be in. I'm only saying this once, so pay attention. Trooper Josef, you are now Sergeant Josef, and will be leading the following men. Troopers Nash, Rush, Harper, Reeves, Lynn, Morrow, Glass, Barret, Mcclain, and Blevins. Specialist Walsh, a skilled Flamer operator as I have been told, will make up the last man in your team. You are on Valkyrie One, with Pilot Carver. Fall in and make sure you know Bloody well what your doing for once you hit the ground."
Josef snapped off a salute and walked over to the Valkyrie, snickering with the rest of them. They all had served on the same team before, just with more green troopers. Even Carver had flown them on multiple occasions, so they already knew what each other could do. They walked onto the Valkyrie, slapping each other on the back and sitting in each of their seats, double checking drop harnesses. Glass spoke up first, an amused tone in his voice. "So Sarge, first thoughts on the new LT? Either more then meets the eye or he's bullshitting us about the Tau. Bet it was a friendly fire accident that split up their unit." Josef smirked at the use of Sarge, something he would have to get used to, and gave his own assessment of this Lt. Skald. "Man seems no nonsense, although he probably won't get along with most of us outside the battlefield. Hopefully Captain will explain to this Skald that we don't work like standard units, or things will get unpleasant fast. Speaking of the Captain...." They shut up as the Captain walked up the boarding ramp of their Valkyrie, and they snapped off salutes to him, Georgy returning the salute and motioning for them to sit back down. "Alright men, your probably not too impressed with Skald, but he got some rejuv treatments as part of his recovery, he is almost as old as I am, so he does know a thing or two, even if it doesn't look like it. I've already gave him the accelerated course on how our Drops work, much to his chagrin, he has no authority to say otherwise. Doesn't like it, but he isn't stupid enough to make an issue out of it. Once your on the ground, The 23rd are in de facto command until me and the command staff hit the dirt, so your probably going to end up stuck in trenches until we can get you mobile again. You may get lucky and remain mobile on your Valkyries, but this is a Krieg were talking about, so I highly doubt it. No I can't give you any further intel until after were planetside, so your going in half blind. Not the best case scenario, but we'll make do. Get comfortable, your deploying as soon as we hit real space. Sentinels are also deploying via Grav chute to provide support until you get in touch and find formal postings. Good luck." Josef sighed as the rest of them groaned. Bloody Trenches, and knowing the Kreig, probably plenty of artillery and gas, means they couldn't even strip their rebreathers once they confirmed clean air. He got as comfortable as possible in the Valkyrie, as the rest of the men did the same, it was going to be a long trip either way.
James told me there's an old saying here on Earth: "May you be in Heaven half an hour before the devil knows you're dead."