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The Execution Short Story Essay

1395 words - 6 pages

Lucia Valorous, Inquisitor of the Adeptus Hereticus, was as brilliant as she was dedicated. And tonight, after nearly five years of dogged pursuit in which she had called on every asset in her considerable collection, both her brilliance and dedication had finally paid off.In ten seconds, the dread heretic Malchloros Vandius, whose machinations had created civil war on two worlds and brought a third to direct secession from the Imperium, would walk around that corner. He would be unarmed, and unsuspecting. He would be riven of his powers by the psi-suppressor that had cost two thirds of the covert wealth Lucia had amassed over half a century, through investments and front corporations and ...view middle of the document...

Never. Not unless someone.... Interrogator Lereth had seen to her weapons for the last year and a half. Could he have exchanged her purchase with bad ammunition, or removed the explosive primer from the bolts?But no; that was impossible. She had checked each shell herself, while painting the pentagrams onto their tips in silver ink. She had taken no chances. Not tonight.The heretic was rushing forward, trying to cross the dozen meters that separated them before she shot him dead. His woman was cowering in the corner; she would deal with that filth later. Perhaps the bimbo had been innocent before tonight, though Lucia doubted it, but at any rate she had been too close to Malchloros Vandius, and could be his pawn even without her knowledge.Vandius himself didn't stand a chance. Her bolter hadn't even hit the ground when Lucia reached the grip of her pistol, thumbing on the laser sight and tugging it from her pocket in one fluid motion.Still, Lucia hadn't survived seventy years of service to the Golden Throne by not thinking. Someone had set her up, and her bolter hadn't fired for reasons she still did not know. In the half moment between drawing and firing, her mind sped on:Lereth had purchased this batch of bolt shells from Carevon Custom Crafters, a very reputable establishment that provided top notch weaponry to those who could afford the very best. That would be a place to start investigating, after she had neutralized anyone who might have betrayed her. If only she knew why the weapon hadn't fired....The targeting laser flickered up the pavement and centered on Vandius’ center of mass. She pulled the trigger.Click!For a moment, Lucia was too surprised to move. Those bullets had never failed, and they were part of the shipment she had bought almost four years ago, before she had taken Lereth onto her team. She racked the slide to clear the chamber, certain that this time it was just a simple instance of bad luck. Vandius was four meters away, now. Lucia's heart pounded with sudden, irrational terror, but she forced her hands steady, aimed, and fired.Click!The almost inaudible hiss of the concealed suppressor mechanism, indistinguishable from traffic noise except to one who knew to listen for it, seemed suddenly very annoying. What she wouldn't give for an enemy she could kill without spending billions of Imperials on a psi-suppressor she would only...The psi-suppressor.The psi-suppressor field could interact with and neutralize Vaelone-Cordine Compound 4, an expensive explosive similar to the ones used in most firing caps. It was the only explanation.She dropped the gun, reaching in desperation for the dagger she kept in her jacket just for occasions like this. She was a knife...

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