The Codex Astartes is the holy tome of these loyal Battle Brothers. The wisdom of the ancients is both scripture and the unbending rod by which they are measured. In war they are as fierce and as steadfast as those of old who stood beside the Emperor and broke the Legions of Horus. In faith and valour they are unmatched. The torches of their chapels burn bright with flames whose holy fire has shown upon an unchanging brotherhood for a hundred centuries. In their lives and in war the Codex Astartes is their guide.
No one, not even one such as I, can anticipate every possible outcome of battle. My words are not some holy writ that must be obeyed. There must always be room for personal initiative on the battlefield. You and I both know how one spark of heroism can turn the tide of battle. That knowledge and personal experience can only be earned in blood, and the leader in the field must always be the ultimate arbiter of what course of action should be followed.
pointed to the three trails. "According to the Steel Princess's Field Guide to Tactics of the Purple Dragon
, that's the standard riding formation for a company with a heavy complement of war wizards. Warriors shielding sorcerers."
"You read that?" Alusair
replied, lifting a brow. "I doubt half the lionars in the army have cracked the cover."
"Perhaps because your style was stiff," said Tanalasta.
"I'll be happy to help you liven it up in a revision."
Alusair's tone grew as terse as her syntax. "There isn't going to be a revision—there's going to be an order." She pointed at the boot print. "I suppose you've read my little book on tracking as well?"
It is always useful to face an enemy who is prepared to die for his country. This means that both he and you have exactly the same aim in mind.
"Don't bother your head about all them things, my lad. There's only one principle of war, and that's this. Hit the other fellow, as quick as you can, and as hard as you can, where it hurts him most, when he ain't lookin'!"
A sergeant-major upon finding the future Field Marshal Bill Slim reading a Big Book Of War