Aspirants-no-longer, I welcome you to the Emperor’s finest Chapter.
You are proud of your accomplishments up to this point. And rightfully so. Any accolades you have earned are rightfully yours. You are the best and brightest of Ultramar’s finest.
And yet, that means nothing, now.
For the journey you are embarking upon will be built on the bones of a corrupt Universe; the heretic, the psycher, the alien and the most dangerous of them all, the corrupted. Those who were once like you, believers in the righteous cause of the Emperor.
It is against this Heresy I counsel you most.
Not your strength of arms, for you are Ultramarines, that goes without saying. Not your willingness to die in battle, for that has been tested before you ever raised an arm in the Emperor’s service. Survival in our Universe is no guarantee and you were chosen from survivors, each a child of War, weaned on the milk of struggle.
Where you need guidance is understanding the legacy of our Chapter. Our adherence to tradition. We don’t just adhere to our holy tradition.
We created this tradition!
We are the standard by which all other Adeptus Astartes measure their faith, their fealty, their ambition, and their excellence in service. You are now Ultramarines, incorruptible, unstoppable and waging a life-time campaign against a heretical Universe. A campaign we can never lose as long as we have faith in the Emperor.
Believe! Fight! Win! He is always with us!
ABOUT THE WORK: A piece of flash fiction for a freelance writing position whose specific limit was 250 words, yet had to relay enough information that readers of the product line could recognize familiarity with the existing works. In this case, the requirement was to have a leader give a rousing speech to new recruits before their first mission.
Thaddeus Howze is a popular and recently awarded Top Writer, 2016 recipient on the Q&A site Quora.com. He is also a moderator and contributor to the Science Fiction and Fantasy Stack Exchange with over fourteen hundred articles in a four year period.
His speculative fiction has appeared online at Medium, Scifiideas.com, and the Au Courant Press Journal. He has appeared in twelve different anthologies in the United States, the United Kingdom and Australia. A list of his published work appears on his website, Hub City Blues.