Squad Dauntless complete. It took a bit longer than I thought. I sat painting with Duncan Rhodes' sage advice echoing in my head like an Oracle: "Try to be as neat as you can, because it saves time later on". Duncan's Slaaneshi, imaginary twin was also whispering in the back of my mind somewhere, "Make his eyes look like Cookie Monster!" but I ignored him.
I'm conscious that I could probably have painted fifty normal marines by now, but I can't stop because I'm on a roll. Its all coming together. I can almost smell the unguents used by the Tech-Priest to bless the power armour. The chanted, monotone prayers and the addition of purity seals. The solemn declaration of the Oath of Moment. By Jiminy, I'm going to paint a Space Marine army!
I had my first game with them last week. Incredibly this was with my son who has not picked up a 40k model since I forced him into Games Workshop on his brother's 12th birthday and made them both build the Dark Vengeance starter set. He was less than enthused with the whole thing so I decided to fix it by buying him a new army. I then bought the older son a new army just in case he ever wanted to play. I may be a bad father.
You can lead a horse to water but you can't make him drink, as they say. Both my kids are video game junkies. They show a passing interest in the lore of 40k but thats about it. I occasionally join them in an inept display of online Overwatch. Mostly I am relegated to standing there as Reinhardt, holding my shield up or tethered to another Reinhardt like an oversized Tinkerbell playing as Mercy. I once rebelled and said I was going to play a DPS character. Switching to Genji nearly gave me an epileptic seizure and I blinked over cliffs constantly as Tracer. "How's that Tracer working out for you, Dad?" they asked me innocently.
So I was very surprised when my youngest actually asked me if he could try out a game using the new 8th ed rules. I built him a 1000(ish) pt list of Orks (his chosen army back when he was 9) being careful to put some nice toys in there to keep it interesting. A Big Mek with a Shokk Attack Gun, missing his left arm. An Ork truck with every single gun in the box glued onto it at bizarre angles. I remember him asking me what was the point of putting all those guns on the sprue if you weren't supposed to glue them all on. Flawless logic, but then he doesn't understand the power of the bitz box. He had some Killa Kans which he had actually gotten round to painting. Lots of Deffkoptas and Boyz. I decided to take it easy on him and only use the Primaris Marines in the new starter set. He tabled me in 4 turns. It might have been sooner if he'd gotten that first turn charge off.
My oldest son has also expressed an interest in tabling me with his Tau. I never knew that beating their father savagely into submission was the hook that was needed to grab their attention. I might need to buy some new toys for my Marines in order to salvage some pride and demand a rematch (my Nids tabled them in a practice game too). I can already see that this is turning into a sickening downward spiral of plastic crack addiction.