My Little Warhammer 40,000: Penitence

Prologue

Lost in a twirling plunge into madness, the mortal was helpless against the onslaught that plagued his mind. Despite not having to breathe in this strange realm, the angel made flesh found himself drowning in the waves of emotion that swelled through the Sea of Souls. Although hate, despair, lust, and hope swirled and flowed around him, only confusion and incomprehension ran through his thoughts as his body, his consciousness, tumbled across the warped confines of a hostile dimension. What little that he saw and was able to understand haunted him with the images of the native denizens of what seemed to be his own private hell.

Lovely sirens beckoned to him, their lips moaning and eyes promising pleasure, but their claws only suggested pain. Misshapen horrors, their forms like melted candle wax, cackled at him with grotesquely gaping mouths. Blood red nightmares roared at him with bronze teeth and brandished shrieking fiery blades at him. Gangly green cyclopes stared dully at him as if they were wondering if he were worth the trouble of breaking their torpor.

They all reached for him as he flew by. Their claws, hands, tentacles, and other appendages raked against his armor. No mark was left by their touch, but the unwitting visitor felt them scratching through his second skin and scraping the edges of his soul. He recognized the foul presence that these monsters represented and steeled his will against them. This prey had been born on a world that had long borne the stain of corruption that leaked from this realm like blood from a wound. He focused his thoughts on sword-fighting routines, the names of those he looked up to, the history of his home world, anything that would give him an anchor to sanity. If he lost this battle here, it would be in every way the end of him.

The assault against his defenses intensified as more monstrosities turned their attention towards him. Despite his concentration, despite his will to deny them, the mortal found himself sorely tested by the relentless onslaught. Sensing his weakness, the tide of nightmares pressed him harder, frustrated by what should have been an easy meal. Quickly he was finding himself overwhelmed, watching in horror as a bellowing beast with bat wings and the head of a fanged bull reached for him and-

Blue sky and white cloud met his vision instead of a swirling madness of impossible colors. It had all been a few milliseconds, an eternity.

He fell.