The Black Fathoms: have a name now

We’ve made it as far as the no. 2 engine sump. Visibility is zero except for the arc-lights and of course, there’s not much headroom down here. Still no crew to be found.

That creeping void frost that lined some of the pipes near maintenance access 21-3 is much thicker now. It lines the walls, floors & ceilings, making every step treacherous underfoot. Everywhere around us glistens & sparkles in the lamp-light and we know for sure now that we are heading toward the source of catastrophe, however beautiful it may be.

The work has not been forgotten. Samples have been taken at 100m intervals as we progress. We won’t know the full details until we get the vials back to Harkis at pathology, but an initial readout from Alia-238′s onboard collators told us the frost in no. 2 sump contains traces of blood, something called nitroguanidine (which apparently had some use in early bolter ammunition) and an unknown, unclassifiable algae. An attempt to clarify the nature of the latter caused the servitor to begin leaking (bleeding?) from aug-interface ports 7 through 14, followed by a fit of convulsions and mostly unintelligible speech. 

Mina managed to subdue the servitor and place it in a safe mode configuration – it seems obvious that a full shutdown will knock out its termperature-control functions and jeopardize all the samples collected thus far. We will endeavour to recover it and bring it back on our return leg. For now, Alia-238 idles in maintenance conduit 7, sub-deck 3, no. 2 engine sump, repeating its last, garbled words before being subdued.

“Black fathoms swallow you”

“Black fathoms swallow you” 

“Black fathoms swallow you” 

We press on.

4 thoughts on “The Black Fathoms: have a name now

  1. I like what you’ve done with these guys – the rusty brown is really nice, and the glossiness adds to it, as does the melted snow on the bases.

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    1. Thanks! Browns have always been under-used colours on space marines of all flavours, so it was fun to experiment a bit here and have it turn out so well.

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    1. I’m sorry I took ages to reply to you! I was blushing too much, probably. The shoulder insignia are all based on designs from some of the lesser-known pirate flags and they’re a bit of a pain to paint, but I like how they stand out in the midst of these deliberately messy paintjobs.

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