The sun rose and the sand began to heat for during the long cold night even the sand froze upon this dying earth. It was a new dawn and it began with bloodshed and horror and the dying.
The first of the colossi spied the Polytechnical Tower crossing the bridge and the sleek hunter saw it for the prey it was. Captain Ahab 8 would claim her prize and not man nor machine nor trollekin would be allowed to stand against her for this was the whale she had waited for.
The Nabucannezzer, silent hunter, stalked her prey harpoons at the ready and the cold dead stare in the eyes of her crew. They were whalers and they lived in the brief moment when the harpoons sung and whales of steel and flesh died.
Silent machines crossed the dried and broken earth without feeling the heartbeat of the sand. They were still alive but their mother Æros had fallen to the hunting dogs and been brought low. From her dying iron carcass they crawled out and with them came the monstrous being that had been their captain but was now reduced to nought but an incapacitated remnant of meat and pus and the sickness of the brain that psykers suffer from.
The mechanical children saw the repugnant whaler steer towards the bridge but the prize should be theirs and they would not be denied by such a primitive engine. The harpoons of the Nabucannezzer sang and the crew roared as oil spurted from the wounded Tower. Howling prayers to their strange gods the humans scaled aboard the Tower cutting cables and injecting scrapcoders into its mind. Tamed and docile the tower turned and climbing to its feet it followed the pirates that would scalp it and claim it for a trophy.
Blood boiled and fury rose and war called the children onward. The giant captain screamed inside his cage of flesh and spluttered out twisted code to make his warrior fight harder yet all his rage was spent and he too fell to those terrible harpoons.
Driven into technocratic rage the children boarded the whaler seeking revenge for their fallen lord. Claws of iron met soft flesh leaving deep crimson marks.
Aghast Ahab 8 stood and saw how awful technology is and in panicked glee she spurred the crew to take up their arms and fight.
Silently the humongous shadow of the Rotburg dwarfed the melee between the men and machines. Darkened eyes spied the thieving rats that would dare stand before the mighty cathedral. The cannons screamed in honest anger and the ground was torn by the broadside and still the Nabucannezzer and the battle on her remained.
Men whimpered and cried as they died and the machines died without a sound and death claimed both. Again the cannons fired and yet again. This was no longer a scrap for spoils, this was an armageddon for those terrified witnesses that still stood fast.
Up above the dust and the bones the Relic Captain mastered the colossus. A frantic mind filled up with coded devotion to the god of machinery and cogs.
The frigate could not hope to hold out against a foe as terrible as the Rotburg. Speed was her only chance of salvation but on the grey dunes there was no salvation to be found. Only destruction.
Rage beyond controlling held the souls of the Nabucannezzer crew and on the ground they stabbed and hacked and died. It didn’t really matter why they fought since their own colossi had fallen. They fought because that was what they knew and they fought seeking to reclaim some small figment of honour.
In the deep shadows they died. They all died.
Trollekin, mecha warriors and men and that called servitor. In mighty shadows they looked upon each other silently. The end was near.