Warm vapour hissed silently out into the night, expelled by environmentally secure vents. They created a foggy nimbus around the 4 armored figures huddled together around the cave's entrance, giving the giants the appearance of vengeful spirits of the night. Which, perhaps, they were after a fashion. Ancient by design, the powered armor suits were decorated in the dark colors of the Deathwatch. The pilots inside as battle hardened and reliable as the weapons they bore.
Lieutenant Barclemes leaned on the hilt of his chainsword as he peered into the darkness of the cave. Off to his right, Seargeant Jargus motioned ahead as his voice came over the commlink.
"Looks like this is the way in, sir," his gruff voice showing faint irritation at the command to halt the approach.
"Picking up several heat signatures on the ground," Lamarks chirped in. He scanned with his heavy bolter's thermal optics, traversing over the mouth of the entrance. "I'm guessing no older than 10... maybe fifteen minutes ago."
"By the Emperor's Throne, what are we waiting for then?" came the excited voice of Corporal Harris. He looked back at Barclemes with his bolter held in a cocky one-handed grip, resting against his shoulder.
"We wait because I ordered you to wait," Barclemes intoned, with serious purpose. "And because I value your life more than you apparently do. Do not mistake the flight of the Eldar for an undisciplined rout. They do not normally give up so easily. I sense a trap."
The four looked back towards the cave entrance before them and considered the warning of the squad commander. It was true, that the Eldar had fled the site of the artifact rather quickly upon the first engagement of the marines. Normally too proud to let the humans recover an artifact of their alien design, the retreat had come as a surprise. Barclemes and his squad had moved up to discover that the tracks appeared to lead them to this underground cave system that the techpriests had mapped out in their preliminary geographic scans.
Resolved to discover the depth of their retreat, Barclemes finally decided that they must follow their quarry wherever that may lead. Even into the bowels of the earth. Signalling forward, he barked out the order...
"Move forward and engage all threats with extreme prejudice. Stick together in there. We will see how many of these xenos can outrun the vengeance of the Deathwatch."