Warhammer 50,000

“Who are we facing, captain?” Nelson, a fresh recruit to the Raven Guard, struggled to remain professional, but Captain Danvers could see his genetically-enhanced muscles trembling with excitement. The rest of the squad sat around the hold of the ship, checking their gear one last time before the engagement.

“We’re up against Orks today,” Danvers answered. A collective groan from the others was silenced by a glance from the captain.

“Orks are strong but stupid, aren’t they?” Nelson asked. “We’re going to slaughter them.”

“Is his omophagea busted? Stick him in the front,” one of the squad members said, eliciting laughs. “I’d prefer Tyranids, even with the hive mind and the clicky noises,” another muttered. “As long as it isn’t those banshee Eldar types,” a third chimed in. “Damn psychic shrieks gave me migraines for a week.”

“The next man to complain gets front row,” Danvers snapped. Silence fell as heavily as a Warlord Titan’s footstep. “We use standard strategy,” he continued. “When the Orks charge in a group, we send one man over their heads to the back of the field while the rest of you scatter to flank them.”

“And when they have possession?” Nelson asked.

“We do what we can to keep the players apart, but if they’re already grouped, we don’t waste time trying to break their ranks because they’ll just trample us into the ground.”

Nelson frowned. “What, we’re just going to let them score? That’s absurd.”

Captain Danvers’ eyes narrowed, then widened again as he bared his teeth in a shark-like grin. “Looks like we have a volunteer to be the hooker, boys.”

Later, after Private Nelson had been revived from the suspended animation brought on by the reaction of his Sus-an membrane to extreme trauma, he would look back somewhat fondly on the day he learned the true meaning of the “WAAAGH!” But he would always be one of the worst space rugby players in the Legion.

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21 Responses to “Warhammer 50,000”

  1. Mesmerix says:

    As a 40k player, let me say that this was a great read first thing in the morning. 🙂

  2. Marisa Birns says:

    Don’t play myself but this is a terrific story! Loved the image of “…hive mind and the clicky noises.”

  3. Description of the opposing teams tickled me to death. Never played rugby or even watched, but this is a great read. I almost didn’t catch the sports angle until the end. Great work!

  4. ganymeder says:

    Space Rugby? Ha! And here I thought it was going to turn out to be they were playing D&D or something…

    Good one. Thanks for the smile!

  5. V.R. Leavitt says:

    I don’t play either, but I LOVE the setup. I was guessing till the very end and enjoyed the Space Rugby payoff. Nice!

  6. Jim Wisneski says:

    Wow… well done here. Space Rugby… I love it.


    Jim Bronyaur
    (http://twitter.com/jimbronyaur – follow me!)
    http://tinyurl.com/336mgf5 <– my #fridayflash if you care to read!

  7. I don’t know much about the game, but this was a fun read. The details in this really brought it to life. Love the reactions about the opponents and strategy by the players/warriors.

  8. You know, if he had only painted his armor red, he would have moved faster.

  9. Gracie says:

    You got me, Valerie. Never even suspected it was rugby. And space rugby, at that.

    Great banter between the players. And great story, too.

  10. @lil_monmon says:

    HEE-HEE. I miss the BloodBowl games. I’d love to see the half-time show. Good dialogue! Very funny.

  11. I was thinking it was a version of ‘Blood Bowl’ but with 40k.



  12. John Wiswell says:

    Was tickled by the title. Is Warhammer fiction good? A couple of retirees on the lake swear by it. The absurdity of things like the laser gun that works because Orks believe it should sound tremendous.

    I’d probably stink at Legion rugby, too. Want to form a team?

  13. Valerie says:

    Hey all, thanks for reading! Glad you liked it. The inspirations for this were my friend asking a question about fantasy football and then commenting about orcs in jerseys or something, and Terry Pratchett’s most recent Discworld novel. Highly recommend it.

    John, I’ve never read any Warhammer fiction, so I have no clue. But the Orks are truly a fun species; that gun thing you mention is due to their subconscious psychic abilities. As Khak said, red paint makes things go faster! We can form a team, but I’m sure to get clobbered. I’m not a fan of pain and I hear they only let you off the field if you’re bleeding. 😉

  14. Jason Warden says:

    Yea, surprisingly I missed the sports angle as well, but it was a great, fun read.

  15. Mari Juniper says:

    I’m not much of a rugby fan, but this match I’d watch willingly, heh.

  16. Maria Kelly says:

    So much fun reading this. Don’t know much about rugby, but I imagine it would be a lot of fun to see aliens play it, especially Orks. Great stuff! My favorite read so far this week! 🙂

  17. Ha – you got me with that one! I don’t watch rugby either, but it worked great anyway. I’d definitely watch space rugby!

  18. GP Ching says:

    Entertaining read with realistic dialog. Nice!

  19. Valerie says:

    I’m not a HUGE rugby fan, being an American and not having cable TV, but it is a sport that appeals to my baser urges. 😛

    Glad the twist worked and wasn’t too cumbersome. Maria, I’m honored, even if you’ve probably found a better story by now! As I’ve been told, my weakness is in my need to go for the joke ending. Thanks for indulging me.

  20. Aidan Fritz says:

    Interesting. Don’t know anything about Warhammer, but the dialogue was enjoyable. Looked up omophagea; sounds very zombie-esque to me.

  21. Dad says:

    there’s always a rookie…

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