With every passing second the two lines drew closer, Artillery shells fell, much of it to the right flank in Support of Admiral Drax’ infantry.
The Deathkorps pushed forward from the bridge engaging the Orks there with Flamer, Lasgun and Bayonet - the fanatical and seemingly fearless Guardsmen drove the Orks backwards one step at a time.
Now the Leviathan spoke, and the ground itself heaved.
It was quickly joined by a fusillade of redcoated infantry and grey armoured tanks alike, green bodies and scraps of metal rained down but it could never be enough, storming through the smoke the lead Stompa emerged crashing into Gravis’ armoured squadrons headlong.
Like a giant ignorant of the destruction in wrought with each step its guns blazed destroying and cripping a complete squadron of Chimera transports as Ork boyz swarmed forwards through the wreckage of there dreadnoughts, though continued artillery fire from the rear kept these in check.
Gravis bellowed across the vox net,
"Co-ordinate all fire, bring it down!"
Lascannon barrels glowed hot, a Vendetta Gunship commenced a pop up attack, veteran infantry unit scrambled forwards meltaguns leaving rivers of molten metal running from the beasts carapace. Just as it seemed nothing could stop the beast from crashing into the Leviathans prow the battery of Rapiers which had been slowly grinding forwards on their track units commenced firing. The first merely scorched its paintwork, the second breached its armour. The third hit the same spot moments later.
It slowed to a crawl, smoke pouring from every vent and window before exploding spectacularly, taking a Russ and dozens of Guardsmen and Orks alike.
Across the battlefield, the first elements of the 4th Mechanised began to arrive, yet still to Gravis' annoyance no word had come from Winterbourne himself. Men were dieing in droves needlessly as the Orks pushed ever closer but for the want of a few more guns.
Drax similarly focused his fire upon the opposing Stompa, its fate was sealed when a group of Veteran Cadians rappelled from the back of a Valkyrie attached to Gravis' own force, their melta fire touching off something critical in the Ork war construct before it could get any closer.
Behind the Lines
The Artillery spoke again another salvo shrieking across the horizon, the lethal Deathstrike Missile rocketing skywards amongst it.
But now Caine realised he had been right to be cautious of those clouds of dust, shapes were resolving themselves into orkish warmachines...
How they had out flanked the Imperial lines so completely he had no idea, but now the meagre defence force protecting the Artillery had a major fight on its hands as the first slots slammed into the Imperial positions, both Manticores disappearing in blinding explosions.
The Krieg were surging forwards, seemingly feeling offense was the best defence.
Meanwhile Caine put his trust in the silent grey landship Dauntless, a Malcador Heavy Tank. Having been deemed to slow to keep up with the main body of the Praetorian 4th as they rushed to support Admiral Drax, it had been left behind.
In the Clouds
Lieutenant Pearson had his hands full, weaving his Vendetta amongst the falling debris of the exploding Stompa as he came around for another pass of the battlefield. Proximity klaxons suddenly blazed into life as the Thunderbolt flashed across far too close for comfort, its autocannons blazing as it strafed the advancing Orks turning green bodies to pulp.
There was a brief flash, and wail of terror on the vox, abruptly cut to silence, as it suddenly blossomed into fire and ploughed into the ground, an Ork Fighta screaming across at high level. It weaved through the wall of flak put up by the Hydras on the ground, seemingly untroubled by the fire.
Already hunting for its next kill.