Servants Of The Emperor
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The sound of heavy boots filled the Chapel. The gathered faces turned as one to follow the figure as he approached the Dias. He was armoured in black, his helmet was a death-mask, and his insignia showed him as a member of the Marines of Vengeance.
"Forgive my tardiness, but I was requested by the Master of Sanctity."
The silence suggested that all gathered understood the demands of the Chaplains.
He took his place on the dias, and began.
"Aya Toran was a devout servent of the Emperor. Born and raised upon our sacred vessel of Colossus, she had aspirations of joining the Sororitas Mission. However, this was not to be. This fact did not deter her, and she would often state how she believed the Emperor would guide her to the role she was best to fill.
"She began to work at Mess Hall BB/2, and did so for many years. At seventeen, she happened to meet Devern Toran, a member of the security detail of the Eighth Company. She requested to transfer with him, and found herself in service of the Company. She became a serf to Brother Mathias, who became Captain of the Company.
"Captain Mathias asked me to pass on that she performed her duties with commitment and patience."
The Chaplain paused, allowing her parents and husband to compose themselves.
"It was aboard the Strike CruserFortis Astartes that she met her untimely end, at the age of thirty-nine. Weapons fire from Ork agressors caused massive internal explosions, and despite the best efforts of the Ship Surgeons, she died of internal injuries. By the grace of the God-Emperor, we were able to bring her body back to Colossus, the place she knew as home."
The Chaplain nodded to his human aides, who carried the body out into the crematorium.
"Ashes to ashes, dust to dust..." Chaplain intoned as he stepped down. He rested his giant, armoured hand on the shoulder of Aya's mother, "her son has been informed. Unfortunately, his duties prevented him from attending."
She nodded, wiping her eyes, "Captain Mathias is a wise and... and noble officer. Aya would have been proud to have a child in the Astartes."
The Chaplain strode out of the chapel, letting his mind ponder on the day. He had performed thirty such services for fallen crew so far, and more awaited him tomorrow. Sometimes he was asked why he and his brethren spent so much time attending to the spiritual needs of the lesser crew, yet all knew that every member of the Chapter, from the lowliest Rating to the Chapter Master, was equally valued in the eyes of the Emperor. He returned to his quarters, and prepared for the evening prayers.