Today was a special day.

Hostfede could sense it the moment he woke up from bed. As soon as he went out for breakfast, a letter bearing great news was delivered. After almost three centuries, the charge by the Departmento Munitorum against Hammeront IV which his great great great grandfather was a commander of had been revoked. A recent investigation found that The Hammeront IV was wiped out to a man fighting the tide of Warp-spawn on the accursed world of Fallax and thus, unable to heed the order to redeploy to Prassium. Their posthumous death sentence had been lifted. His great great great grandfather, though he would be in the belly of daemons right now, would definitely glad the Imperium stopped seeing him as worthless coward and saw him as the usual expandable meat instead.

The breakfast was the best he had for years. A group of musician played as he ate. The waitresses were pretty, no doubt servants of high ranking officials of this world. After two months in hellish captivity by the Greenskins, he felt he deserved every moment of this.

But that was not all that was amazing, today was the day Hostfede finally met the very person whom he had been admiring since his childhood, Lord Militant Francis Drake, decorated hero of the Imperium, bane of aliens, slayer of heretics, saver of planets, winner of every single thumb wrestling tournament. The Lord General had personally come here to congratulate Hostfede for his action during the previous successful campaign against the vile Orks which saw them systematically and mercilessly expunged from the entire system.

"How have you been, son?" asked Lord Drake. Despite being in his one hundred twenties, he looked as vigorous as any middle age person could, mostly thanks to the juvenile treatment he received.

"I am fine now, sir," Hostfede replied. To be honest, his back still ached from the whip of his captors, but he decided not to mention that. First good impression was always the key. "Ready to serve again in the name of the Emperor."

"Glad to hear that," Lord Drake chuckled cordially. "Now tell me about your little victory over the Orks. People said it was an epic tale. How could one man make such difference where entire armies cannot? How is this that the fate of no less than five worlds was changed by the action of a single person? I want to know."

"Well, the Warboss was the one driving them all along," said Hostfede, feeling a bit nervous. He was unaccustomed to being praised. The Imperial Guards had forbiddingly strict discipline, doing something wrong would result in brief punishment while doing something right would only allow one to stand a few inches away from the Commissar. "After he's dead, the whole thing just fell apart."

"Yes," Drake agreed. "But it was you who put an end to that foul beast, didn't you?"

"Not really, sir," Hostfede replied. "I just happened to think it would be a good idea to connect twenty four rockets to the trigger of his favorite gun. I was tasked with the polishing of it every day."

"And the Nobz, you are also responsible for their death?" asked Drake. "They told me you somehow convinced the Warboss to kill them off one by one until there was no successor left to takeover."

"Warboss Bigstompa wasn't very much a bright one," Hostfede admitted. "He was paranoid. I fed to that, filling his mind with constant thought of insecurity and an imminent overthrow. He did what I implanted him to."

"But still, it was you who masterminded it all along, am I right?" Drake insisted.

"Yes, sir," said Hostfede.

"Very well," said Drake, satisfied. "Then it is without any regret that I now pronounce you, Lord General Alfred Hostfede of the Astra Militarum. Congratulation, son. High Command sent me here to welcome you to the rank. Anything to say about this?"
Hostfede was in complete shock over what the Lord Militant just said. Regardless what his achievements were, regardless the heroism and devotion he displayed, climbing up the hierarchical ladder within the Imperial Guards was based on seniority, length of service and combat experience. He had none of that. He was twenty five and a Lieutenant. This was his first campaign since his graduation from Scholar Progenium. Such promotion was unheard of, if not nonsensical.

"There has got to be a mistake, sir," Hostfede stammered. "I…I…don't'…"

"Don't like that," said Drake cheerfully. "You are a Lord General now. Isn't that the dream of every person of the Imperial Guards, to finally have the power to lead an entire regiment of men into battle, to sit back and relax while others die in the Emperor's name on your order?"

"That is indeed my dream, sir," said Hostfede. "But I wished for it to happen within the next thirty years or so, not right now. I really can't do this. I am just too young."

The Lord Militant had a deep sigh. Hostfede was worried he might have offended him when Drake continued, "May I push this conversation a bit into less formal territory, if you are alright with, of course?"

"Go ahead, sir," Hostfede braced himself.

"Listen to what I have to say and listen carefully," said Drake, his voice all of a sudden somber. It made the hair on the back of Hostfede's neck raise. "We were eating shit back then. I wasn't there myself, but from the report I can draw the picture. The lines were stretched thin. Supplies were running low. Our asses got constantly kicked, one time after another. The Orks outnumbered us ten to one. They were victorious, and we were losing. But wait, there is still hope, for a company of Space Marines are on the way," Drake's tone changed to irony at this point. "Who could have the strength to save the planets from the clutch of the Orks other than the finest warriors of the Imperium, the Adeptus Astartes? And what will happen to all the men and women of the Imperial Guards who fought bravely there apart from some footnotes? That has happened countless time, and it would have happened here had you not intervene. For once, we managed to win in half the estimate time and at 60 percent lower casualties than expected. But most of all, we proved that we could stand on our own and still triumph without the aid of the superhuman Space Marines. Now, do you see?"

"I do, sir," Hostfede replied, realizing his promotion was on the ground of politics all along. With the way the Imperial Guards worked, it was impossible to refuse this one, less he angered a lot of people at the top which he really hoped he did not.

"You are a monumental man, Hostfede," Drake continued. "And monumental men cannot be wasted at the bottom. We need them at the top. No more question, you are to be a Lord General, like it or not. Got that?"

"Yes, sir," said Hostfede begrudgingly.

Drake nodded. "Very well. Your regiment has already been chosen. Due to…uhm, technical difficulties, we could not get their representative here. I will introduce you to them once we get abroad. Get ready yourself, we are moving out to Dorian 7th where a Necron Tomb has just been discovered. Other Guard regiments are also on the way. Wouldn't want to miss the fun, would you?"

Hostfede sighed. Another mission, another enemy, another war. All for the glory of the Imperium and He on Throne. The call of duty just never ceased. He was hero here, but in the next warzone, he might be dead man.

So much for a special day, he thought.

The boarding took place five days later, just enough for Hostfede to savior the luxury of life on the planet Taurok whose population was grateful for his contribution in repelling the Orkish invaders. As the ship took off, Lord Militant Francis Drake took him to the barrack where the new regiment was awaiting his leadership.

"This regiment was recently formed, by the order of the High Lords of Terra themselves," Drake explained. "They don't have an official name yet, so come up with something when you meet. Also, many of them have served the Imperium for a period, so you might find some important contact and advisers there."

The corridor leading to this particular barrack was empty and separated from the rest of the ship as though it had been abandoned by its crew for some reason. The floor was filthy. Some of the pipes were clearly leaking. Navy staff seemed to have rarely been here, probably even avoiding it, at least for the last few months.


"How are they like?" Hostfede asked. Little did he know he was going to regret himself for his curiosity.

"Well," said the Lord Militant as the two reached a massive door. "Why don't you find it out yourself?"

The door opened. Hostfede jerked a step back. He thought he was in some sort of nightmare. When pinching his own cheek did not help, he began to think this was a practical joke the general was playing on him, but a sober look on Drake canceled that. Hostfede watched in horror at sight laid before him. His face was green, but that was a far cry from the contents of that chamber.



More Orks.

Orks' vehicles.

Some Gretchin.

A banana bundle.

Hostfede loved banana. The only problem was, in order to get to his prize, he had to make his way through ranks of Greenskins without turning himself into food instead.

"Look uvva dere! Our new Boss!" shouted one of the Greenskins. Hostfede could not pinpoint who that was. There were thousands of them in the chamber, all looking the same, and more horrifyingly, all looking at him.

"Well, he ain't look so green," said another Ork. "Maybe he'z greena on da inside."

"Ohh, shut it ya gitz. Az long az dis Boss give me some good fight, maybe some good teef az well, I'll be with him.

"Da Boss iz 'ere to lead da Waaargh! Hurray!"

"Emperor's hairy ass!" Hostfede exclaimed.

"I can see you have a grasp on their language as well," Lord Drake remarked mockingly.

"What is this all about?" asked Hostfede, addressing Lord Drake with the most serious face he could muster. "Are you telling me my entire army consists of... aliens?"

"I don't see a problem here," said Drake. "You are the general. Your duty to the Emperor is to lead his warriors to battle. Who these warriors are is immaterial."

"Not immaterial anymore when they are all Orks," countered Hostfede. "As in, Orks, the greatest and most common enemy known to men."

"Fine, then," Drake conceded. "Humanity has been at war against the Orks long before the Imperium even existed. For the most part, we thought they were mindless beasts driven by basic needs to kill and destroy. We were wrong. The Third War of Armageddon taught us these creatures can think, and if they can think, then they can be reasoned with. We tried. We succeeded. Why continue fighting the green horde when you can have them as a tool to crush any enemy you want? But atlas, the skill to actually use this took is lacking within our organization."

"So that is why you chose me?" asked Hostfede. "Because I was captured by the Orks, and got away, killing their Warboss and Nobz in the process?"

"We chose you because you possess a skill not commonly seen," said Drake. " Negotiations with these savages often start well but end in a lot of backstabbing and unnecessary bloodshed. However, since you not only managed to communicate with but also make Warboss Bigstompa place more faith into you than any of his lieutenants, you have something we can work with. Also, you were captured by the Orks for more than two months. That should leave enough time for you to learn about their culture and how to blend in. Don't worry, a lot of the Bloody Axes here are veterans of the Imperial Guards. They will give you a piece of advice or two should you need."

"I can see your point in this," said Hostfede. "But should this not be an investment for longer term? Should we not have them tested before sending them into real combat?"

Drake could not help by laughed at his subordinate's naivety. "This is the Imperial Guards, son. Real combat is where all the experiments take place. Better get them battle ready. We will be arriving the warzone in a week."

With that, the Lord Militant departed, leaving his general alone with the aliens.

Hostfede looked back at the Orks. All of their eyes were directed towards him. Just the sight of it made him want to piss his pant. Some of the Orks carried Imperial equipment, even wore Imperial badges and uniforms; whether they were issued such or used force to acquire Hostfede was not certain. Then, he realized they were not filled with untamed brutality and desires for wanton destruction. That they did not charge at him immediately was a good sign. Savages as these Orks were, but that did not hide the fact all warriors of all races were animals at some point. Maybe there was not so much difference between humans and Orks after all. All he needed now was a common goal. The total annihilation of the Necron Tomb seemed plausible enough. The amount of loot would surely please these greedy Greenskins.

"I shall assume command from now on," Hostfede raised his voice above the wild chattering amongst the Orks. "The regiment shall be named Emperor's Greenest. If anyone asks why, put a boot into their gut." Some chuckled came from the Orks. Hostfede was glad he had got their attention now. "Let our background not make any difference. I am human, you are Orks, none of those matters anymore. We are all warriors of the Imperium, and our common goal is simple, we fight and we WIN! The time has come for the two races to come together, and push forward in the same direction. The inexhaustible might of the Orks, combined with the advance technology and warfare tactics of the Imperial Guards, who can stand between us and victory?

"Let our enemy beware. Let them tremble before our might. Let the head of those who doubt our strength be stomped twice beneath our boots.

"All Orks, follow me to glory! For the Emperor!"

An uproarous respond came from the crowd. "FER DA EMPRA!"

"And somebody grab me that banana bundle," said Hostfede. "I am hungry."

Author's note: I wrote this one because quite a few stories where the Orks being described as more than just mindless killers end in just one chapter. This story is inspired by Perkunas of GorkaMorka, but with some more serious thoughts on the Orks and how they can fight alongside the Imperium.

Anyway, hope you enjoy it. This will be another short story that will be finished after 3 chapters. Enjoy.