I asked this question on SCIFI SE, but was informed that it might be better suited to here.

Basically, I recall a story that accompanied an RPG game in the late 90s. In the story, a human psychic was trying to study a gun they captured from some alien race. Both the gun and its bullets are sentient; the act of firing the gun results in killing the bullet.

In the story, the psychic somehow gets controlled by the gun and I think ends up shooting some of the other humans present.

Anyone know anything about this? I am looking for:

  • The game - wasn't a computer game from what I recall EDIT: Warhammer 40K
  • The race - uses biology instead of technology EDIT: Tyranids
  • The story - this will be the hardest part I think

EDIT: So I am pretty sure the gun involved is a Deathspitter.

I've found a fan-fic written by a pre-teen, which is reminiscent of the original story, but shorter and of less quality than I remember. While it has all the elements of the story I am looking for (perhaps the original story was used for inspiration?) I'm sure it is not the same one.

I've also found what may be a reference to the original story in this forum answer. I am looking for White Dwarf issue 130 now to see if I can find it.

  • 1
    \$\begingroup\$ +1. I seem to recall encountering this story, but can't remember anything of it aside from what you described here, and am now rather curious. :) \$\endgroup\$
    – OpaCitiZen
    Commented May 30, 2014 at 12:11
  • \$\begingroup\$ Don't the Dark Eldar use guns that fire souls of psychics? \$\endgroup\$
    – JohnP
    Commented May 30, 2014 at 15:23
  • \$\begingroup\$ @GMJoe I editted the question because I didn't have a complete answer. Also, while Warhammer and Tyranids came from other users, I researched myself to determine the type of gun. I wanted to clarify for others that I now had more information that would be useful for determining the origin of the story. Adding my own answer (that I wouldn't accept because it wasn't complete) wouldn't help, and just adding the type of gun might not help unless the users were familiar with Warhammer Tyranids. I thought the best way was to clarify the question. \$\endgroup\$
    – Trenin
    Commented Jun 5, 2014 at 13:33
  • \$\begingroup\$ @Trenin Ah, fair enough. \$\endgroup\$
    – GMJoe
    Commented Jun 6, 2014 at 2:22

2 Answers 2


This would be a Warhammer 40,000 story, and the psychic in question was an Astropath employed by a nosy Inquisitor of the Imperium of Man, studying a weapon taken from the Tyranids (think the xenomorphs from the Alien movies, but with living guns, and bound together by psychic power of sorts).

Because everything the Tyranids make is connected psychically to the Hive Mind, this meant that when the Astropath picked up the gun, and tried to psychically connect/control it, he got caught by the much stronger force of the Hive Mind. Bearing in mind that the Tyranids as a force are capable of spanning the entire galaxy, and use living flora/fauna to manufacture more of themselves (so literally eating a planet to create more tyranids increases the size of their force and thus their psychic strength), and bearing in mind that they're chasing their way into "our" galaxy, which means they probably already devoured the inhabitants of one or two others, and ours is just next on the menu, the Hive Mind is really powerful compared to a human psychic's mind. So in short, nosy psychic investigates living gun, and gets more than he bargained for when the Hive Mind invades his comparatively miniscule mind.

At the bottom there's a comment mentioning the story: http://www.belloflostsouls.net/2012/03/40k-flashback-2nd-edition-tyranids.html

Apparently Inquisitor Kryptmann employed an Astropath to take a look at one of the Tyranid bio-weapons (probably from a termagant).


Here's supporting information regarding White Dwarf 130, and the old story/fiction "Bit of fluff" hidden within.

Additional support here: http://wh40k.lexicanum.com/wiki/White_Dwarf_130_(UK)

  • 1
    \$\begingroup\$ @Trenin, that's the one, yes - Deathspitter sounds correct as the standard gun which fires living bullets (fleshborers) which eat through the target, literally. Have edited my own post to reflect additional info - nice find! \$\endgroup\$
    – mcjomar
    Commented Jun 2, 2014 at 14:26
  • 1
    \$\begingroup\$ Would you mind ironing those Edit sections into the actual post? In particular, the fact you've found the story makes the paragraph where you're not sure about the story kinda vestigial. Relevant meta discussion: Don't signal your edits in text \$\endgroup\$ Commented Jun 4, 2014 at 3:04
  • \$\begingroup\$ Updated source link: pdfcoffee.com/qdownload/what-dwarf-130-pdf-free.html \$\endgroup\$
    – Brondahl
    Commented Oct 23, 2022 at 10:34

The story is in White Dwarf 130. Here is an excerpt from the story:

Borshak swivelled the huge gun to bear on him. Kryptman threw himself to one side. The thing in Borshak's hands spasmed. There was a terrible tearing grinding sound. Kryptman remembered what Borshak had said about the grubs being chewed up and spat out. There was a sound like a man vomiting. A burst of mucus sprayed out. Something hard cracked the wall behind him. A stink, as of excrement mixed with bile, filled the air.



You must log in to answer this question.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged .