Warhammer: Vermintide

[CONTEST] – Can a Man Serve Two Masters?

warhammer 8 - [CONTEST] - Can a Man Serve Two Masters?
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For the contest, a short fic from the POV of our favorite bartender, with my own silly fan-theory. 🙂

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Can a man serve two masters?

I got to admit, it's a question I ask myself all too often. It ain't easy tryin' ta save the Empire, but sometimes that leads you down weird paths.

Now, not the Chaos kind, like you might be thinking. Honestly, that's almost trite in comparison to the reality.

Everyone knows I'm more than just a bartender at this point. Can't exactly hide that fact, can I? But even clever old Saltzpyre doesn't know just how much more.

Becoming one of the Emperor's Eyes was something I'd never planned on, but it seems I'm good at these sorts of things. Always was the sneaky type, clever type.

And I did that because I knew that if humankind were ever gonna survive in this world, we had to be prepared to sacrifice anything. It was a tough lot, but I was all-in.

But finding that weird amulet changed things up even more. I didn't hear the voice from it at first, but it drew me in. I thought it was some thing of Chaos and planned to give it to Father Kraussman – but then it spoke to me.

I knew it was from Lustria or the Southlands by the markings. Always struck me as odd that the lizard fellas down there had such fancy trinkets and art, but this thing was something else. I don't even know what those gems are in it, but they glow with a light of their own.

The voice that came out of it was the craziest thing I ever heard. There wasn't really a sound, it was all in me head. Now, hearing voices from sketchy amulets sounds like how half the stories of people falling to Chaos start, but this wasn't that.

Even I don't have the words for it, but the voice wasn't chaotic. It was alien, for sure, but it had this . . . order to it. Like a map of a city that's laid out in perfect blocks and lines.

Wasn't long before I realized it was a Slann. Never seen one of the things, but I'd heard stories from the adventurers who went to the jungle. Giant toady-lookin' fellas that controlled the more brutish lizard things. Never figured them to be that smart compared to us, but I was wrong.

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It spoke to me and told me exactly what it wanted. Didn't mince words, and by Sigmar – the truth of it was clear in everything it said. There's an order to the world – or at least there's supposed to be. The Dark Gods bungled that up right good, but there's still something – at least somewhat – in our corner.

When it spoke to me, it was like looking into a well that had no bottom. It hurts my damn head to even think about now. Ages of time, thousands of years. More knowledge than I could ever imagine. This thing had considered the flapping of a butterfly's wings and what effects it would have on the weather a hundred years later – then played the whole scenario out in its head. And that was just a passing thought!

It wanted to help. It knew about Sigmar, it said their interests weren't contrary, not on the big scale. We wanted to exist, and we fit into the plans of the Old Ones that it wanted to keep going. We were quickly becoming the front line against Chaos, so it wanted to have someone who had their finger on the pulse of things up here.

Took me awhile to trust it. It was Oleysa who came to me and told me I should. She'd started having dreams – being a wizard and all, she could hear it even when the amulet wasn't near. She knew a lot more, and she told me that we'd never defeat the Pactsworn alone. She just wasn't strong enough to do what we needed.

I never betrayed old Karl! I didn't give away any secrets, and it didn't care to know about us, anyway. I just told it about the movements of the Pactsworn, what I knew of their plans. And in return, well . . . It gave us some key information. Some of the biggest job I've sent the Ubersreik Five on came from that thing. And most of all, it lent some of its power to Oleysa. Did you really think she could do all that herself? She's strong, lads, but she ain't that strong.

But I do wonder, sometimes, if I did right in listening to that big toad. I suppose I can't know for sure that it's not some wheels-within-wheels trick of Chaos. I probably never will know, not til I'm dead.

Maybe all this has damned my soul. Maybe Sigmar would cast me out of his hall for all this, throw me to some pit of chaos.

I suppose I'd accept that fate if it meant we saved the world.

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