The Carcharodons books we have read so far mentioned Akia as an inspiring Reaper Prime. Bail Sharr often wonders if he is doing as good of a job as Akia did, but the reader never knew what it was like under Akia’s leadership. Enter Carcharodons: The Reaping Time by Robbie MacNiven. Find out for yourself how Akia handles the Red Tithe at a very familiar planet—Zartak. Yes, that Zartak.
But this Zartak isn’t the prison colony we saw with Bail Sharr. It’s a mining colony, and one that is less than pleased to see the Carcharodons. To be fair, most people aren’t happy to see the exiled Shark Marines. They’re scary looking, they don’t act like the Space Marines the Imperium has heard legends about, and they don’t say much. They’re also quite prone to rapid acts of violence.
Shark Marines do-doo do-doo-do-do
The miners are currently undergoing a rebellion, and the rebel peoples in charge do not want to pay the tithe to the Carcharodons. What’s really adorable is how they try to kill the Carcharodons to cover up the rebellion. Evidently they never dealt with Space Marines before, especially not this flavor.
The entire story is action-filled and slightly humorous in a morbid kind of way. Akia is exactly how MacNiven’s Carcharodons series depicts him to be: ruthless without any effs to give. Te Kahurangi is Akia’s conscience and giver of effs on his behalf. When Akia rages through, Te Kahurangi placates the minds of everyone around Akia so they don’t freak out or start a fight they certainly won’t finish. I’m sure most of these scenes weren’t meant to be humorous, but they made me snicker nonetheless.
However, nothing made me snicker more than the realization that the miners and Carcharodons were speaking of completely different tithes. Neither of them found it half as amusing as I did.
Carcharodons: The Reaping Time by Robbie MacNiven was originally published in the Black Library Advent Calendar in 2016. It’s now available in eBook for everyone to enjoy. And if you enjoy the Carcharodons at all, you will also enjoy this.