The unceasing wind howled around the nameless warrior but he remained still as a statue. His outward appearance a deception as he scanned the horizon vigilantly for any threat that was foolish enough to show itself. It was his duty and he did not waver from it, for that way lay death.
They came to this planet 13 days ago after a distress beacon was picked up via the ship’s Astropath. The raving, disjointed messages made no sense but came with a Magenta level encryption and so the war host saw fit to investigate.
They arrived to nothing and no one. The planet appeared deserted, but signs of life persisted. A half drunk caff here, a cache of food here, but no people could be found. That was until the first night when the horde attacked. Mindless men, women and children interwoven with shadows. Their staggering charge no less dangerous for its slowness. The Librarian said they were tainted by the warp. Tainted or not, they died like any other enemy with bolt and blade. The morning came and the horde retreated to the wastes, shrouded by shadow and dust.
The warriors came upon the monoliths in the middle of the wastes and it was there they found the source of the madness. Shifting shadows drew out from the monoliths, twisting and striking. A claw here, a hand wielding a knife there. To look on them was madness, as several serfs found out. Like the horde, they were systematically terminated by the warriors in battle plate.
Full of dark energy, the monoliths towered over the war host. Each day brought changes to the seemingly immobile stone. A movement of hand here, a change of face there. Today one held a stone man wrapped in chains, a soundless scream frozen on his lips. Where yesterday they had faces of maidens, today they held menacing skulls.
But worse than the shadows were the unceasing whispers. Even the stalwart chosen of the Emperor were taken by them if they did not remain forever vigilant. The nameless warrior did not mourn his lost brothers, for they succumbed to weakness and that way lay destruction. And so his unwavering faith protected him and still he watched and waited for the night when they would come again.