It’s kind of crazy that the last WH40k short story I read and wrote about was by Mike Brooks, only to follow it up with another short story by Mike Brooks, The Brightest and Best. When I saw he wrote a short story about the Alpha Legion, well, that was like my own personal bat-signal. I couldn’t purchase the eBook fast enough. And like his primarch novel Alpharius, Brooks delightfully posits the question of whose lies are truly worse.
Today I’ve been busy sorting other stuff out, and so I forgot that my Alpha Legion digital short story THE BRIGHTEST & BEST is on sale now! Go and get it if you want to learn what the Alpha Legion is up to in the 41st millennium (hint: shenanigans)!https://t.co/waCq9yssKH
— Mike Brooks (@MikeBrooks668) June 22, 2022
The Beatings Will Continue Until Morale Improves
Our story opens with two students in the middle of what can be called detention in the world of WH40k schola. They’re being punished for something we don’t learn until about halfway through the story, and it’s quite hilarious. But that’s hardly the main thing going on.
While these students prepare for their punishment of translating a tome about hydrofarming—like on Tatooine?—a Thunderhawk lands on the schola grounds and out pops a few Silver Lions. The Lions are here to gather all of the children to serve their chapter, since they know this particular schola produces the brightest and best for the Imperium. As they put it, most Chapters recruit on death worlds and the like, but that doesn’t always produce smart warriors. Seems legit, right?
But this is an Alpha Legion story, so you already know none of this is legit.
While the story is overall rather entertaining in that snazzy, Alpha Legion way, it also presents the fact that Imperium is far from sunshine and roses. They will take unthinkable measures to prevent the enemy from getting what they want. It’s both horrifying and yet unsurprising. They’ve always kind of operated on an “if we can’t have it, neither can you” mentality ever since the Horus Heresy.
Where’s the Lie?
I don’t want to spoil the actual quote, because you really should read this story, but the last line of dialogue in the story will stay with me forever. It’s something I’ve considered for awhile with the Imperium, especially when it comes to the Inquisition.
Yep, can’t say any more without spoiling this fast read. Mike Brooks is right in that the Alpha Legion is up to shenanigans, but I can’t help but think these shenanigans aren’t any worse than whatever the Imperium is up to. In fact, it’s very possible that these shenanigans are in the name of the Emperor.
It’s the Alpha Legion. Who knows!