Shades of an Empire is a mini-arc contained within Tales from The Imperium and is a plot that revolves around Indigo Shade as the villain to both The Imperium and the High Empire as she strives to drive a wedge between them. Initially Ameryl Hypericum, Left Arm of The Imperium, joined with two princesses of the High Empire, Kleo the Summermaid and Astrid Kal'Vassemp in their search for Indigo Shade.
The Briggan System
In CatH Post 63, Indigo Shade was aboard Kalor Varkesh, a High Imperial warship, after it hunted her down in the Deep Void. The crew managed to blast her with a High Imperial Energy Canon[CatH 1] that she survived but was depleted of her strength and had to retreat from the ship. She watched from the depths of the void as Kalor Varkesh made light work of the flotilla she had assembled and vowed further vengeance. In the future, this would lead to a meeting of The Imperium and the High Empire aboard the starship The Lamb, controlled by the Left Arm of The Imperium; Ameryl Hypericum. She is met by two Daughters of Highemperor, Astrid Kal'Vassemp and Kleo the Summermaid, who represented the interests of the High Empire in capturing Indigo Shade. Kleo, as a hypericumite, was a firm supporter of Ameryl as the 'true queen' of Hypericum due to the 'great betrayal' of Imeryn Hypericum when she sacrificed the hypericumites to the brink of extinction in a failed attack upon the Stronghold of Powerplayers. The three women meet in the Conference Room of The Lamb and Ameryl stated that the three High Imperial ships were granted access to Imperium territory, but only if Ameryl and The Lamb accompany them. She insisted this was to avoid political turmoil should either princess be injured, or worse, trying to retrieve Indigo Shade[Tales 1]. Several Imperium ships join the three High Imperial ships as they jump to their destination in chase of Indigo Shade. Though The Lamb used its Astral Plane drive, which is faster than most faster-than-light technology, Kalor Varkesh used its Bagon-Noz Drive to slip through Tartarus and arrive several minute before Ameryl could. She warned Astrid that Indigo Shade may have prepared for their arrival before the other ships finally arrive and together they fly towards the planet Briggan. Ameryl is suuspicious of a trap since Indigo Shade seemed not to be hiding her presence on Briggan, but there were now no lifesigns in range. Soon enough, there was a sudden disturbance as a supermassive blackhole began to form in the system. One of the High Imperial ships attempted to jump, but the gravity of the blackhole split the ship in twain. Ameryl panicked as this supermassive blackhole would surely consume the entire Brontax Galaxy and the trillions people that lived there[Tales 2]. On the orders of Ameryl, Locrete Bastelle Andralain manned the tractors to lock onto the falling broken sections of the High Imperial craft to stop it plunging into the expanding blackhole. She likewise tractors Kalor Varkesh before it slipped from the group. They were forced to consider their options as the blackhole was expanding and no jumps could be done within its gravity well. The Imperium personnel could escape using their portals, but the High Imperial crews would be left behind to die. Astrid devised a plan wherein she would open a gate to Tartarus and stop Kalor Varkesh passing through the gate until all other ships had gone through first. Tartarus is beyond realspace, meaning they would not be affected by the supermassive blackhole once inside. It would, however, be difficult and a mage onboard the Kalor Varkesh had to open the gate wider than usual. Once open, ships went through the gate, but the aft section of the shattered High Imperial battlecruiser missed and slipped beyond into the blackhole. One of The Lamb's Greater Omega Reich vessels hit the rim of the gate and was sliced in half. The last two ships, The Lamb with Kalor Varkesh riding upon it's hull, are dragged out of alignment; the only option thus was to tractor onto the mysterious, demonic force within Tartarus to pull them inside[Tales 3].
Main article: Tales Post 16
Once within Tartarus, they were unable to track the other ships. Even when they detected one of the Greater Omega Reich ships slip deeper into Tartarus, they were unable to tractor it back because there is no space within Tartarus and the ship was claimed by the unfathomable demons. A screeching sound struck the crew of The Lamb and rendered them all unconscious, save Ameryl Hypericum who used the anti-power within her ring to negate all power pressed upon her. Memnoch, the ruler of Tartarus, appeared and used his full power upon her, but the anti-power negated it. Instead, she struck a deal with him. She offered to grant him infinite souls in return for ownership of a Hell for The Imperium. He agreed, though he doubted her, and allowed them to pass through Tartarus and back into realspace[Tales 4].
Post 17, Post 19
Clear and the Hopeless References
Tales from The Imperium References
- Tales Post 3, Tales Page 1, Shades of an Empire, Tales from The Imperium written by Britt the Writer.
- Tales Post 4, Tales Page 1, Shades of an Empire, Tales from The Imperium written by Britt the Writer.
- Tales Post 5, Tales Page 1, Shades of an Empire, Tales from The Imperium written by Britt the Writer.
- Tales Post 16, Tales Page 1, Shades of an Empire, Tales from The Imperium written by Britt the Writer.