by Chris Cook

"Impudent bitch," muttered Surahk as he searched the rubble for the Commissar’s head. He uncovered a lieutenant, who twitched slightly until the Dracon’s agoniser wrapped around his neck. The other warriors looked up at the scream. They knew to stay away from the Dracon when he was in this kind of mood. He had been Hierarch under the old Archon, and demotion was not sitting well with him. Surahk’s displeasure could easily result in the death of his subordinates.

"As if obeying that gorgon wasn’t enough," he continued to himself, throwing away the lifeless human, "I have to take orders from her lap-dog Hierarch. As if I’d never seen a hundred human marines die at the hands of my warriors!" Surahk became aware of a presence behind him, and swung his agoniser whip blindly, intending to remove the head of whoever it was.

"Well, aren’t we in a good mood?" said Nemesis in a lilting voice, yanking the whip from Surahk’s hand. The Dracon turned slowly, wondering how much she’d heard. If she’d heard too much, he would die. Then again, she might kill him anyway. Her unpredictable temper was becoming legendary among the Kabals. A hand reached out and closed around his neck, bringing him closer. She stopped when he could feel her breathing against his cheek. She whispered into his ear.

"Don’t worry, I need people like you. The others are afraid of me, but you hate me. You’d burn in your own fire just to see me die. That excites me," she finished, touching her lips to his ear. There was a second when she was still, then the Dracon felt a searing pain, and pulled his head away.

"Lay a hand on my Hierarch, and I’ll do more than taste," she hissed, licking the blood from her lips. She pushed Surahk away and turned back towards her Raider.

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